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UPDATE: Wolf Control Program Back Up

March 28, 2008 | Wolves

Alaska Newsreader / Anchorage Daily News / March 25, 2008

Dead olf
Hunter retrieves the body of a wolf shot from a plane. (Photo courtesy Wolf)

Down for a week after a judge's ruling, the state's predator-control program is back at "full throttle," according to a Fairbanks Daily News-Miner story. The Board of Game met in an emergency session to look at legal problems cited in the judge's decision and made adjustments, according to the story.

Pilot-gunner teams have reported killing 81 wolves in five control areas this winter, according to the story. The decision to go ahead with the program drew quick criticism from critics, including this from Priscilla Feral, executive director of Friends of Animals, which sued to stop the program:

"The (Game Board) and their apologists in the bureaucracy have a reputation as a nursery for nitwit schemes. When the courts have ruled that the state's aerial wolf-shooting schemes are breaking the law, within days, the Board of Game concocts new rules. Clearly, they make stuff up, their process is a sham and they just want to shoot wolves everywhere in Alaska. This is an abuse of power."

Alaska Judge Upholds Aerial Wolf Killing But Limits Extent

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (Environmental News Service) March 18, 2008- A federal judge on Friday invalidated the aerial gunning of wolves in several areas of Alaska in a case brought by four conservation groups challenging the state's wolf control program.

At the same time, Superior Court Judge William Morse upheld the practice of shooting wolves from planes and helicopters.

"¦In his decision, Judge Morse examined the entire history of Alaska's wolf control programs. His ruling upholds the aerial gunning program as a whole, while banning the practice in four areas covering up to 15,000 of the total of about 60,000 square miles covered by the program.

The areas where the judge banned aerial gunning are the areas into which the Game Board extended it in 2006, notably covering the entire Forty Mile caribou herd near Tok and also in an area across Cook Inlet from Anchorage.

"¦From her office in Darien, Connecticut, Priscilla Feral, president of Friends of Animals, said, "Our efforts in the lawsuit stopped aerial wolf control in 12,000 - 15,000 square miles of Alaska - that's four regions into which the state had expanded their reckless killing schemes in 2006. They've opened 60,000 square miles to aircraft and helicopter-assisted shooting as the bureaucracy is hell bent on killing wolves all across the state."

"These ghastly forays must be halted by public publicy, a majority of voters on a ballot initiative in August, and through other reforms and legal challenges," said Feral. "Alaska's mean-spirited predator control programs are a blight on the continent. Friends of Animals is committed to holding the Board of Game's feet to the fire; their process is a sham."

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Comments

this is horrible!! i may be only 14 but jeez! i hunt and i would never do this to an animal especially the wolf. they are beautiful creatures that shouldnt be killed. Unless of course the population of them is getting out of hand then their hide and their meat should be used to its full potential. this is the only reason why i hunt. To keep one species from killing off another. Please if anyone knows how to help these animals let me know. I would love to save them!!

if they wanted their livestock so bad move to Nebraska or Wyoming or something like that, there are hardly any wolves left as it is and now they're shooting them so they can go hunt for caribou, it's just not right, no one, animal or human should be slaughtered for their fur, or THEIR food source.

I don't get it. Why kill them? If they're causing a problem in one place, why not relocate them instead? Here in America, wolves are very much endangered. Why not simply bring them down here where they can still live happily? Alaskan hunters can still have their "game" and the innocent wolves don't get killed by a bunch of selfish humans. [Blog editors' note: Actually, the behavior problem belongs to hunters, not wolves. Let's leave the wolves to Alska's vast wilderness and send the hunters to outer space. ]

My brother Alex who passed away in a car accident last spring was nick named "Wolf" for his love of wolves that ran so deep. When he passed away leaving two young boys and a new wife I had a wolf tattooed to my back high near my neck so whenever someone asks, which they do almost every day, I tell them who it's for, my brother and his wolves. Alex Watts worked in Montana with a wolf program and reintroduction program years ago. He also went up to Canada once a year to take home and take care of mixed breeds with wolf in them that once a year in some towns are shot or taken away. I promise my brother and the wolves I will do all in my power to stop this madness. Killing these creatures should be a crime. And we, those who choose to kill them in cold blood, are the criminals. It's as simple as that.

RJ and Karen i understand your boycott of alaska, although i believe it to be ineffective. i am curious as to what montana, idaho and wyoming done to invoke your anger? please pardon my ignorance on such things. i, like many alaskans, tend to ignore most of what happens "outside". [Blog editor's note: The states of Wyoming, Montana and Idaho are primed to advance wolf trophy hunts this fall since the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service removed wolf protections under the Endangered Species Act by delisting wolves, and throwing their fates to three states wedded to ranching interests. Lawsuits are expected, but meanwhile, Wyoming officials announced trophy hunt permits will cost residents $15.00, or $150 for nonresidents. Tourists can see Yellowstone this summer without having to spend a dime in Wyoming, Montana or Idaho. Sounds like a plan.

The hunters are murdering beautiful wild animals who have no chance to fight back or even to flee just so they can feel like 'macho men'. The politicians only care about being in power and lining their pockets. This is not just Alaska's business...murder and environmental destruction is everyone's business! Too much harm has already been done to our environment and it must be stopped! The wild creatures have just as much right to life as we do...if not more,since it is we,not the animals,who are destroying everything beautiful on earth. In this time of the earth's history when most people are desperately trying to find ways to save our environment so we,ourselves, can survive,this is nothing less than wanton destruction to please a select few. I hope everyone will join me in boycotting everything of,by and for Alaska,Idaho,Wyoming,Montana and anyone else who cannot or will not understand that. This Must Stop!

I have been a strong advocate to save the wolves for a long time. I recently sent an e-mail to the Alaska Governor Sarah Palin. This Governor says she will only be able to reply to Alaska letters. Fine, but I hope she takes to heart all of the messages she gets from concerned individuals, no matter where they live. These beautiful animals need our help and support to protect them from these thoughtless killers. How cruel are their actions and what does this tell us about what kind of people they really are!

I am outraged that this is happening! I agree, these places should be avoided as vacation destinations. I know my family will never set foot in a state that has condoned this or promoted it. Obviously, the people in office don't understand and/or don't care how nature works. READ, ASK, LEARN! How primitive their actions are and repulsive -- to say it politely! It looks to me like there are way too many WRONG people in offices that they don't deserve!

i had the plesure to spend some time with wolfs last fall, they are shy of humans,some even looked like my dogs, this is probably why people get ticked off when these brain dead nitwits kill wolfs. they look at them as dogs and think,if these idiots will kill a wolf, what's to stop them from killing someones dog. i have seen pitbulls and other dogs that would make a wolf look like a mouse. and as far as the game board is concerned, they need to get in planes and go out and look for these animals to kill them. real threat,its not like there knocking at there door to come in.the game board is so full of it, it's to late to save the shoes, better role up the pants.somebody should tell these boneheads, little red ridding hood was a fairy tale. maybe we should send all our crack heads and junkies up there to live, let them exspirence some car jacking and home invasions. this way when there woken up in the middle of the night with a gun in there face being held by someone who doesn't know what planet they're on. the game board and the idiots that support wolf killing will realize the difference between a threat and a animal just living its life.

It's absolutely disguisting what they're doing. Thanks to the killing of 81 wolves, a tight knit family has been broken up. Perhaps a mother has possibly been taken from her cubs, all in the name of sport and those just itching to shot such a lovely animal for bragging rights and a pelt on the wall. Is that all that matters anymore? The thrill of shooting an animal that is naturally skiddish and shy of humans? Where's the glory of killing an animal that makes it a point to leave people alone? What can you possibly say to defend the argument that killing wolves is ok? Besides that old argument that they are a danger to livestock. Well guess what folks, you moved into THEIR world, not the other way around. You chose to raise livestock in their ancient homelands. You say they threaten your way of life? Well you threaten theirs as well. Because you're human, does that give you the right to impose your will on the other creatures that inhabit the same home as us? We fought so hard for years to bring the wolf back from the edge...only to have them once again be deemed as game. Those who can proudly say they shot a wolf, has shamed us in general.

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