trophy hunting

Coalition seeks to stop wildlife killing contests in British Columbia

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WDL joins a coalition of 54 environmental and animal protection groups, conservationists and scientists in calling on the government of British Columbia to put a stop to wildlife-killing contests, after learning about three such events currently taking place in the province.

In an open letter addressed to the Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, Doug Donaldson, the signatories expressed significant concern about the existence of contests throughout the province that are encouraging the indiscriminate killing of animals including wolves, coyotes, cougars and racoons.

In some cases, participants receive points for the type of animal killed and are competing for a cash prize. The coalition is currently aware of three separate contests, the first is a “wolf-whacking contest” hosted by Chilcotin Guns in Williams Lake; the second is a “predator tournament” hosted by the Creston Valley Rod and Gun Club; and the third is a wolf bounty being offered by the West Kootenay Outdoorsmen Club.

The coalition opposes these contests and argues they are not supported by science, nor are they ethical. While contest organizers claim their efforts are a “fun” way to protect ungulate populations by reducing predator populations, research shows that predator killing contests are ineffective and fail to address any root causes of decline. Instead, wildlife professionals suggest efforts should be invested in habitat protection and restoration.

The coalition also points to the widespread public support surrounding the ban on the grizzly bear trophy hunt, as well as the growing opposition to the province’s wolf cull program to suggest that the vast majority of British Columbians would also not support these predator killing contests.

These contests not only teach disrespect for wildlife through the indiscriminate killing of as many predators as possible for fun, but they also disregard the value of individual animals, both intrinsically and as a part of the larger ecosystem to which they belong.

The Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources said in a statement that it doesn’t condone or encourage wildlife-killing contests but noted there are no rules that prevent them from being held so long as hunters are properly licensed and follow the laws. It’s our position that the government has the authority and responsibility to handle wildlife management and they permit what they condone and ban what they don’t. If they truly don’t condone these events then they should ban them.

We’re encouraging our supporters to contact the appropriate government officials and respectfully ask that predator-killing contests be banned. Contact information can be found below. You can also find contact information for your MLA and include them in your ask.

Hon. Doug Donaldson - Minster of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations & Rural Development

Email: FLNR.Minister@gov.bc.ca

Telephone: (250) 387-6240

Hon. George Heyman - Minister of Environment & Climate Change Strategy

E-mail: ENV.Minister@gov.bc.ca

Telephone: (250) 387-1187

Fish and Wildlife - Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations & Rural Development

Email: FishandWildlife@gov.bc.ca

Telephone: 1-877-855-3222

Strong majority of British Columbians support legislation that would ban trophy hunting

A new nationwide Insights West poll reveals a strong majority of Canadians support legislative action to ban trophy hunting. In the online survey of a representative sample of Canadians, 80% support such legislation and in British Columbia support reaches 90%.

The results of this poll are timely. British Columbia's provincial election, set for May 9th, 2017, is fast approaching and it's more important now than ever to push for a provincial ban on the highly controversial grizzly bear hunt. 

We’ve put together a toolkit intended to empower the vast majority of British Columbians opposed to the hunt in making it an election issue. We'll help you organize a local screening of Lush Cosmetics' short documentary, "Trophy"; host a letter/email-writing night; hand out leaflets at events or in public gathering places; and utilize our template letters to contact election candidates and call for their support for a ban on the hunt. 

We’re here to provide logistical support and help you connect with others in your community who want to see the hunt banned, so check out our TrophyFreeBC toolkit and contact us to get started! Not from British Columbia but still want to take action? Get in touch with us! You can also donate to help us organize outreach efforts in the lead up to the election.

Together we can put BC's grizzly bear hunt where it belongs - in the past!