This morning, opponents of the upcoming wolf hunting season rallied outside the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources to voice their concerns and to file a petition to stop the hunt.
After 40 years on the federal endangered species list, the Minnesota Gray Wolf was taken off the list and put under the state management of the Minnesota DNR. The Minnesota DNR made a commitment to wait five years before proposing a wolf hunting and trapping season, however they bypassed this law and now the season is set to begin on November 3, 2012.
The season which the DNR claims has been created to ensure the survival and monitor the wolf population, while protecting livestock and domestic animals from depredation will allow for the ‘harvest’ of 400 wolves. The DNR is selling 6000 licenses for the two-part hunting and trapping season this winter.
This morning Maureen Hackett, MD, President and Founder of Howling for Wolves delivered a petition to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources asking them to put an end to the hunt. The petition states
"The DNR has no data to show that randomly hunting non-problem wolves provides a solution to livestock depredation problems. Instead, the DNR is recklessly risking the health of the Minnesota wolf population to satisfy special interest groups."
The petition also argues that the original Wolf Management Plan was not followed, public opinion has been ignored, and we do not know the detrimental effects that random hunting will have on the populations and Minnesota’s ecology.