Lansing, Michigan - -(Ammoland.com)- The impending showdown over Michigan’s wolf management looms large, as we head into the current election cycle.
On one end of the spectrum is the largest anti-hunting organization in the nation – the Washington-based Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), while opposition comes from Citizens for Professional Wildlife Management (CPWM).
Over 5 ½ years ago, then Deputy Secretary of the Interior, Lynn Scarlett, announced the removal of the western Great Lakes wolf population and portions of the northern Rocky Mountain population of gray wolves from protection under the Endangered Species Act.
“Wolves have recovered in the Great Lakes and the northern Rocky Mountains because of the hard work, cooperation and flexibility shown by states, tribes, conservation groups, federal agencies and citizens of both regions,” said Scarlett. “We can all be proud of our various roles in saving this icon of the American wilderness.”
Well, almost all of us.
HSUS has already sent its lobbyists to Lansing and has threatened even more lawsuits. Science has been discarded in lieu of robo calls designed to pressure legislators to ignore the collective voice of some 297,051 registered Michigan voters’ signatures in support of the Scientific Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act.
One thing is certain, and it’s a simple formula that can be applied to any circumstance involving hunting, as far as the animal rights campaign is concerned: they are against it.
But, what have we as a nation learned from this raging battle? Apparently not a thing.
During its annual year-end population survey, the Mexican Wolf Interagency Field Team (IFT) counted a minimum of 83 Mexican wolves in the wild in Arizona and New Mexico at the end of 2013. This number demonstrates a 10 percent increase in the known population of Mexican wolves in the wild compared to the 2012 minimum population count of 75 wolves.
“With a minimum of 83 wolves in the wild, the Mexican wolf population has nearly doubled in the past four years,” said Benjamin Tuggle, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Southwest Regional Director. “I’m proud of the remarkable progress that the Mexican Wolf Recovery Program and its partners have achieved in bringing the Mexican wolf back from the brink of extinction.”
So, we spend tax dollars to raise and plant wolves and continue to set “realistic recovery goals that anti-hunting groups will never agree on, then spend more tax dollars on more lawsuits and call it progress. And, on top of all this, in states such as Oregon, wolf depredation tax credits are allowed up to $37,500 per year based on the current market value of livestock killed. Have you checked the price of beef lately?
Insanity? You bet!
Your real voice to your state representative can trump computer calls by indicating that you support the Scientific Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act. If our representatives fail to vote for science-based wildlife management this month, it’ll be us conservationists against them in November.
About Glen WunderlichCharter Member Professional Outdoor Media Association (POMA). Outdoor writer and columnist for The Argus-Press (www.argus-press.com) and blog site at www.thinkingafield.org Member National Rifle Association (NRA), Michigan United Conservation Clubs (MUCC), member U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance (USSA), Quality Deer Management Association (QDMA), Commemorative Bucks of Michigan (CBM). Adjutant of Perry, Michigan Sons of Amvets Post 4064 and Chairman Perry (MI) Youth Hunt Extravaganza, a sanctioned event of Perry Sons of Amvets held the third weekend of September each year.