The provincial government has proposed lengthening the wolf trapping season on Vancouver Island by an additional 51 days, in an ill-informed attempt to protect deer populations.
They are seeking public feedback on the proposal, with a deadline of Friday, Jan.19th, 2018 for submissions.
WDL is opposed to this proposal to lengthen the wolf trapping season - see our submission below for more information.
Please take a moment to advocate for wolves by submitting feedback on this proposal before the Friday deadline. Feel free to use our submission below as a guideline, but be sure to personalize your letter.
You can also send your comments directly to the Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations & Rural Development, Doug Donaldson - FLNR.Minister@gov.bc.ca
Feedback on Reg. # 2018-1-10 to lengthen wolf trapping season
Please accept this submission as part of the consultation for the proposal to lengthen the wolf trapping season on Vancouver Island.
We strongly oppose this proposal for a number of reasons - it is based on anecdotal reports that wolf numbers seem to be increasing, but there is no recent reliable, science-based population count of wolves on the island (the last population estimate is from 1994), nor any measurable data to suggest the population is in fact increasing. Even if wolf populations are confirmed scientifically to have increased, that alone does not justify lengthening the trapping season. Similarly, there is no reliable evidence to suggest that any decline in ungulates is necessarily due to wolf populations - any decline in ungulates must be researched in-depth.
We also oppose lengthening the trapping season due to the increased risk of non-target species being caught in these traps, not to mention the safety issues facing the public and domestic animals.
The provincial government has stated that they will be moving forward with a broader consultation process for a renewed wildlife management strategy for the province in 2018, but this one-off policy fails to align with the government’s acknowledgements that a renewed strategy is needed. Instead, it seems more in-line with the previous government’s tendency to scapegoat predators. In addition, the lack of reliable, measurable data surrounding this proposal is incredibly worrisome and dangerous.
For these reasons, we are calling on the provincial government to reject this proposal to lengthen the wolf trapping season and instead move forward with the process of updating the province's wildlife management strategy so that it is science-based, conservation-focused and aligned with the values of the vast majority of British Columbians.