|1957 and NOW! This alpha female had nine pups inside of her ready to be born but she got no sympathy from Alaska's aerial hunters. Already shot at least twice, she was finished off by a third gunman as she struggled to stand in the snow.
Governor Murkowskis reinstatement of aerial wolf hunting in Alaska means heightened slaughter in a state that is already a hell hole for wolves. Hunting and trapping have already annihilated more than 7,000 wolves between 1996 and 2002 - and possibly even twice that number if unreported harvests are accounted for. Nearly 7,500 wolves have been killed in just the past five years!
Land and shoot hunting, when hunters in airplanes chase wolves to the point of exhaustion and then shoot them when they are too tired to escape, threatens wolves even more. It is unconscionable that Alaskas government has assured the senseless and easy murder of perhaps thousands more wolves.
Land and shoot laws are an obvious move to mollify disgruntled hunting interests which claim wolves are reducing moose and caribou herds. Never mind the facts, that larger prey species elude wolves up to 97 per cent of the time and that wolves, by removing the sick, weak, inferior and old members of their prey species, actually strengthen those gene pools.
This new, heightened slaughter of wolves via aerial methods is a sickening return to the senseless, barbaric practices begun in Alaska prior to statehood and continued thereafter, this time with Governor Murkowskis blessing. It is time for the governor to do the right thing - stop the slaughter. UPDATE BELOW
Dear Governor Murkowski,
Your recent reinstatement of aerial wolf hunting in Alaska is shocking, given the already horrific situation of wolves in your state. Between 1996 and 2002 alone, more than 7,000 wolves were killed, possibly even twice that number according to the Alaska Department of Fish and Games "harvest" summary. Excessive hunting and trapping in your state have resulted in the deaths of nearly 7,500 wolves in just the past five years. With wolf killing already rampant in Alaska, with Endangered Species Act protections being lessened or obliterated throughout the lower 48 states, and with wolves being highly endangered throughout much of the world, it is unconscionable that Alaska, home to the largest remaining population of Gray Wolves in the United States, would condone and even encourage such activity.
Land and shoot, or just shoot, are transparent laws, an obvious move to mollify disgruntled hunting interests which claim wolves are reducing "their" moose and caribou herds. Never mind the facts, that larger prey species elude wolves up to 97 per cent of the time. Never mind that wolves actually help control the delicate balance of nature via the "sanitation effect," removing the sick, weak, inferior and old members of their prey species, thus strengthening those gene pools. Even if the hunters, trappers and others who make their living from the deaths of innocent creatures are correct in stating that wolves have reduced ungulate herds to dangerously low levels, nature will right itself, as it has before, time and time again, without the intervention of man.
Wolves, predators with a purpose, put human hunters, predators without just cause, to shame. Moose and caribou, an intricate part of the food chain and natures natural order, at least die with dignity via the fangs of the wolf. Wolves, natures most maligned and misunderstood animals, do not die with the same dignity and respect via the airplanes and guns of blood-thirsty sporting "enthusiasts." This new, heightened slaughter of wolves via aerial methods is a sickening return to the senseless, barbaric practices begun in Alaska prior to statehood and continued thereafter, this time, with your blessing.
Last season 147 wolves were brutally gunned down. The Alaska Board of Game's expansion of land and shoot this season targets 400 wolves in two new hunting areas. In total, Alaska's six aerial wolf killing programs assure the death of nearly 900 wolves this season. These massacres, together with fully legal hunting and trapping, will result in the anihilation of about 2,500 wolves -- one third of Alaska's estimated wolf population.
Governor Murkowski, we will not be travelling to Alaska until your aerial wolf "control" program is cancelled.
Governor Murkowski, we are asking you to do the right thing - to stop the slaughter.