Lansing, Michigan – -(Ammoland.com)- How thoughtful of The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) to send me a free gift.
In the mail this week came a 2015-2016 pocket planner with a signed letter from President and Chief Executive Officer, Wayne Pacelle, exclusively for me. Imagine that. CEO Pacelle says he needs friends like me – and, of course, my gift in any amount I can share.
In the letter, the Humane Society of the United States claimed that donations help the organization “investigate and expose brutal industries” including “internet hunting.” Never mind that nobody has ever “hunted over the internet” and that not one single website offers it.
Oddly, there is no mention of its petition which sought to list gray wolves in the United States as “threatened,” under the Endangered Species Act in its list of good deeds. Maybe that’s because that battle has just been lost.
Michigan United Conservation Clubs (MUCC) indicates the petition was filed by the Humane Society of the United States and other anti-hunting organizations including the Center for Biological Diversity, the Fund for Animals, the Detroit Zoological Society, National Wolfwatcher Coalition and the Detroit Audubon Society. It requested that gray wolves in the conterminous United States, except for the Mexican Gray Wolf, be listed as “threatened,” which would preclude any state from holding a hunting season for them for any reason. The USFWS ruled that the petition lacked “substantial scientific or commercial information” necessary to consider it any further.
“This decision by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologists confirms that wolves are biologically recovered in the western Great Lakes and that state management plans, like Michigan’s, are sufficient to sustain the wolf population and are the appropriate way to manage wolves in the region,” said Amy Trotter, deputy director for Michigan United Conservation Clubs and a member of the Michigan Wolf Forum.
Among its findings, the USFWS stated that wolves in the conterminous U.S., which are made up of multiple distinct population segments of gray wolf, are not likely to become an endangered species within the foreseeable future due to any of the five listing factors, and that HSUS’s claim that they have to be present in all unoccupied suitable habitat to be considered recovered is “based on a misinterpretation of the Act.”
The USFWS further stated that state management plans are sufficient to sustain wolf populations in recovered areas, including where hunting and trapping is allowed.
“The existing state plans regulating take of wolves only allow take above certain population thresholds, such that if the other causes of mortality increased above certain levels, hunting and trapping would be reduced to prevent the population from dipping below those thresholds.”
“We are disappointed in the FWS’ decision not to consider this middle-ground approach to wolf management. A threatened listing is a reasonable compromise to this contentious issue…”says Michael Markarian, chief program and policy officer of HSUS.
But, a “threatened listing” would mean no hunting – the only reasonable means to keep wolf numbers in check.
Wolves in the western Great Lakes were delisted in 2011, only to be relisted by a lone federal judge in December 2014, who also claimed that wolves must be present in all unoccupied suitable habitat to be considered recovered – a decision currently being appealed.
Now, where’s that neat little planner, because I have some important dates to enter: small game opener September 15th, archery deer October 1st, firearms deer November 15th…
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).