As winter cold sets in, time is running out for iconic wild bison that are supposed to be protected by U.S. federal law.
Each winter, members of the last wild, genetically pure Yellowstone bison herd wander from the park in search of food. Although it’s nothing more than hunger that drives them from the protective confines of Yellowstone, their lives are in danger the second they step over the invisible line.
Defenders of Wildlife writes:
“Because of an unsubstantiated fear that bison will transmit a disease called brucellosis to domestic cattle, bison face a grim fate: Harassed back into the park where food is scarce; shot on sight; or shipped off to slaughter.
“There have been no credible reports of brucellosis ever being transmitted from wild bison to livestock. However, in the past five winters, thousands of wild bison have been killed and harassed in a terrible and out-dated policy that needs to end.”
Why is this sensless slaughter allowed to occur? Because livestock special interests are calling the shots on how these bison are treated.
When America was a young country, ranchers and pioneers slaughtered thousands of these majestic animals without realizing they were driving the species to extinction, but today’s cattle farmers know exactly what they’re doing.
Your voice can make a difference for some of America’s last wild bison — descendants of those that survived the horrific slaughter of the 1800s.
Sign this petition to prevent the hazing and killing of Yellowstone’s wild bison, and urge Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to allow these iconic animals to roam more freely on the public lands outside Yellowstone National Park.
Image Credit: Flickr - sociotard