Written by PETA
In a case of literal overkill, Sweden is turning more than 6,700 hunters loose on just 20 wolves. In case you don't have a calculator handy, that breaks down to about 335 armed-and-dangerous folks per animal—in a country with only about 200 wolves. And Sweden claims that this is being done to increase the country's wolf population. Wow, if that's how they handle reproductive problems, I'd hate to visit a Swedish fertility clinic!
The European Union (EU) is calling Sweden out on its bull … er, wolf droppings, warning the country that the hunt violates EU directives. EU Environment Commissioner Janez Potocnik has proposed formal proceedings against Sweden for breaching EU regulations. But the action will be too late for the wolves—at least 16 have already died, and during a previous wolf slaughter, hunters went over their quota.
Wolves mate for life and live in close-knit family units that work together to care for their young and hunt. They rarely have internal disputes with other pack members—something we humans could learn from. Hunting can devastate entire communities of these intelligent, social animals.
Not mentioning anyone by name (*cough* Sarah Palin *cough*), but some in the U.S. also have wolf blood on their hands. You can do something about it here.
Written by Jeff Mackey
While 6,700 hunters for 20 wolves is definite overkill, I have to agree with Ben 100% on this one. As a hunter, I know how it all works. The population is kept track of. For every game animal(we will use Mule Deer as an example), there is an ideal population for each area. The land can only support a certain amount of Mulies effectively before they all begin to suffer. Every year, there is a certain amount of Mule Deer tags raffled off to hunters for designated areas. Not every hunter gets one. Say 30 tags are distributed because there are 100 Mulies and the area can only effectively support 70. Not all 30 of those tags will be used. Not every hunt is successful. There is a limit on hunt lengths. These animals definitely know how to evade hunters. Once the hunt is over, those who shot their buck or doe bring it back to Fish and Game or whoever is in charge in the area and the required information brought back by the hunters helps the wildlife service get an insight into what the condition of the individuals that make up the population is. The year goes by and the population is left to grow a bit. The younger animals replace the elderly ones who have died and the process starts all over again.
@ ocean17: Exactly how is it cruel? Is it less cruel to allow the animals to suffer by starving to death over the course of several months or to quickly put an end to their suffering (and helping save the rest of the population from the same fate) by killing them quickly (usually in less than five minutes, often in less than one) and relatively painlessly? While I agree that sending 6000 hunters after 20 wolves is beyond overkill, hunting is a key population check, not only for the benefit of the wolves, but for humans and other species (such as the wolves' prey) as well. If you can think of a more humane way, I'm all ears though.
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