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Save Wolves from Being Shot on National Forests

Save Wolves from Being Shot on National Forests

Defenders of Wildlife has an online petition with tens of thousands of signatures collected so far, to stop a plan in Wyoming allowing wolves to be shot on sight in national forests. Yes, you read that correctly, shot on sight in national forests. Where else would wolves be? Strip malls? The petition needs 75,000 signatures and they are about half way to that goal.

The people who have proposed this very dubious, if not outrageous plan must be very unaware wolves contribute about $35 million dollars a year to the  Yellowstone economy due to the very large numbers of tourists who visit each year for the chance to see the besieged animals. A University of Montana study generated that large figure, most likely because such research hadn’t been conducted, indicating that many people don’t see wolves as having any value. To the contrary, many ranchers see only as damaging their livestock and therefore a drain on the regional economy, but this view is very far from true.

Wolves provide an additional value to the smaller meat-eating animals in their habitat as well. A different study showed they tend to not finish eating their prey at times, which leaves free meat for coyotes, golden eagles, and other small creatures, and the distribution of the food occurs somewhat evenly throughout the year, which means there is a fairly steady supply of left over food for the smaller animals. Of course, they also contribute to ecosystems by reducing the numbers of herbivores, such as deer and elk. When predators are killed off, these populations can grow unchecked and create problems for the human communities.

The controversy around how the wild wolves should be protected from human society is especially remarkable because it is obscuring the fact that the reintroduction of wild wolves to Yellowstone and the whole region has been a very successful venture.

Image Credit: dobak

Related Links

Wolves Worth about $35 Million a Year in Yellowstone
85% of Wolves Could be Killed in Idaho

[You can also take action at Care2: see Protect Wolves from Shoot-on-Sight "Management" and Stop the Killing of Idaho Wolves]

Read more: Pets, Nature & Wildlife, Wildlife

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104 comments

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12:33PM PST on Jan 11, 2012

signed and posted to Facebook

2:07PM PST on Jan 10, 2012

I can't sign but I wish I could. I'm not American.

8:02AM PST on Jan 10, 2012

The real big bad wolf is man!!!

7:44PM PST on Dec 28, 2011

Petition signed. Ok so I had to add a zero to my postcode as it is only 4 digits, but it was worth it to help save the wolves! Thanks.

7:30PM PST on Dec 23, 2011

I just can't figure out this hatred toward wolves... dogs come from them!

9:09PM PST on Dec 22, 2011

I love wolves! How dare they shoot nature from a helicopter! First of all, the wolves don't do anything to you, so why shall you shoot them? Second of all, helicopters seriousy? Come on! It's not like you can go in a helicopter whenever you want and shoot at trees randomly and just go straight to rapidfire! Why do you want to shoot them? Think of 17 good reasons why you should kill any animal before you do it. If you are one of the people that don't want animals to die then spread around stuff to stop this crisus and at least try to help animals, people and the environment not get hurt. I think it is wrong to let animals get hurt. Please read this and take care. Too many animals are being killed. Would if someone shot you? How would you feel?

11:26AM PST on Dec 21, 2011

Noted , sorry can't sign US only....Thankyou....

9:29AM PST on Nov 13, 2011

briannna martin. Wolves are my favorite animals.

9:29AM PST on Nov 13, 2011

briannna martin. Wolves are my favorite animals.

9:33AM PDT on Oct 20, 2011

Maryann M - when you find the "ban 'sport' hunting" petition let me know. I don't even see how it can be called 'sport'.

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