Target: John Bullard, Northeast Regional Administrator NOAA Fisheries
Goal: Protect New England grey seals from controlled hunts
In 1972 grey seals were placed on the endangered species list and came close to disappearing from the East Coast. Through ongoing conservation efforts the grey seal has rebounded, but a sector of local New England businessmen are calling for a controlled hunt of this marine mammal.
The Seal Abatement Coalition is trying to get the Marine Mammal Protection Act amended to allow controlled hunts of the grey seals currently making Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard their home. This group argues that the seals are taking up too much room on the beach and fears that the appetite of the seals will endanger the fish population, thereby affecting local sport and commercial fishing.
In reality, local fisheries don’t see the seals as a threat since they don’t compete for the same catch. The presence of the seals may actually help the ecosystem. Seals eat fish, and through the process of digestion, add plankton stimulating material to their habitat. Since plankton serves as fish food, logic dictates that this environment will actually attract fish.
Considering it was overzealous hunters who originally caused the endangered plight of these seals, under no circumstances should these men receive the legal ability to hunt this creature. Such action would decimate the strongest members of a population just now beginning to thrive. Sign the petition to ensure New England grey seals protected from hunting.
Dear Mr. Bullard,
Please take every action possible to thwart the Seal Abatement Coalition and their attempt to amend the Marine Mammal Protection Act, which would allow a controlled hunt of grey seals in East Coast waters. The Seal Abatement Coalition has implied that the seals have threatened the traditional life on the coast without taking into consideration that the true tradition of the coast inherently includes seals surviving in their natural habitat.
Please keep the Marine Mammal Protection Act intact and stop the efforts of short-sighted businessmen from making rash decisions on an ecosystem they clearly do not understand.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Ian Paterson via geography Creative Commons