In what has to be the one of the most bloodthirsty post-Christmas festivities yet, Idaho's announced a wolf and coyote slaughter contest for all the family. And it really does mean “all the family” – children as young as ten can enter the competition being held on the weekend of 28-29 December.
In this celebration of tastelessness and death, prizes will be awarded for such “achievements” as most female coyotes killed, biggest wolf and so on.
Both wolves and coyotes play essential roles in the ecosystem – they are not pests. Wolves actually need increased protection. Even if numbers did need to be reduced, which they don’t, shooting these beautiful animals should only ever be done by professionals. Treating it as family entertainment is ridiculous.
Tell Idaho that the true meaning of Christmas is not, in fact, barbarity.
We the undersigned ask that you stop the “wolf and coyote derby” planned in Salmon for the weekend of 28-29 December, which sends out completely the wrong messages.
Although wolves and coyotes can pose a threat to livestock, this should be dealt with by protecting the livestock and accepting the occasionally loss as inevitable. As top predators, wolves and coyotes play an essential part in Idaho’s ecosystems, notably in keeping deer, rabbit and rodent numbers under control, and should be respected; not treated as vermin to be slaughtered in a tasteless contest.
Wolves actually need more protection as numbers are decreasing. On the few occasions when there is no choice but to kill coyotes, the job should be carried out discreetly by professionals. It is not family entertainment, and this sort of event makes the state look like it’s stuck in the 18th century. Shooting animals for food is one thing, but killing as entertainment desensitizes children to the sanctity of life, not to mention being crass in the extreme.
Please take the opportunity to show that Idaho does have class and a sense of environmental responsibility by seeing that this event is cancelled
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