Letter: DNR puts the wolf’s future in jeopardy
The hunting season imposed on wolves so soon after they were removed from the endangered species list has caused great controversy and misunderstanding of the role of the wolf in our ecology.
When I attended last week’s DNR meeting held with deer hunters, I witnessed why the DNR made a grave error for the wolf’s future in Minnesota, by rushing to hunt and trap wolves in 2012.
At one point it became a roomful of deer hunters talking about killing wolves. One man even advocated for using the poison strychnine to kill wolves. The discussion indicated an alarming lack of knowledge about basic ecology.
But the DNR had predicted this. But instead of implementing the Wolf Management Plan, the DNR rushed to a wolf hunt with the newly appointed commissioner Tom Landwehr at the helm.
The wolf hunt seems to have confused many in the public into believing that the wolf hunt serves a purpose or is necessary. It’s hard for many people to believe that the DNR would simply offer public “recreational” wolf hunting, trapping and snaring season on wolves. But there is another darker segment of people and views that came to the DNR’s meeting last week. This was the view that all wolves should be killed. For the wolf, the recreational hunt appears to have encouraged anti-wolf sentiment and even more wolf killing all year ’round
Senate Bill 2256 to temporarily suspend the wolf hunt has passed the house in February 2014 with a majority vote. This is a common sense law that meets many requirements for all involved. It requires information on the outcome of the hunt on the wolf population, a wolf census (some think fewer than 2,000), best practices for farmers, and tribal concerns. If the indiscriminate killing of wolves continues, they will go back on the endangered species list.
Now is the time to take action if you want the wolf hunt suspended. Please don’t hesitate to call Gov. Mark Dayton and let him know how you feel. You also may call Speaker of the House Paul Thissen or Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk, or your personal representatives in the Legislature.