The Board of Game plans to debate a proposal at its Bethel meeting this week that would reauthorize a program allowing the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to eliminate all the wolves on a part of the lower Kenai Peninsula.
The area in question, the Predation Control Area of Unit 15C, consists of all lands within the unit north of Kachemak Bay up to Tustumena Lake, including the Fox River Flats and a number of federal, state and private lands. If the Board of Game votes to approve the proposal (Proposal 155) at its upcoming meeting scheduled for Jan. 4–7 in Bethel, the department could allow the public to hunt and trap wolves, both from the ground and from the air, and would be allowed to conduct its own aerial hunts.
By eliminating wolves, the department aims to raise the moose harvest in the area. “Annual harvests of moose in the area have been consistently lower than the target of 200–350 animals and the population is lower than the target,” according to the proposal. Because the Predation Control Area does not cover the entirety of Unit 15C, the department is recommending eliminating all the wolves from the area because “sufficient population sources can be found within adjacent areas once control efforts cease.”
The deadline for receiving comments was December 22nd, 2016 for this regional meeting. However, submission of written comments after the deadlines will be accepted but are limited to ten single-sided or five double-sided pages in length from any one individual or group and will be provided to the board members at the beginning of the meeting and must be faxed to 907-465-6094 (or submit them in person) by January 7th.
Wolf Conservation Center offers a petition which I ask that you please sign immediately, here.
Had we been on time you would have been able comment on the proposed regulation by submitting written comments to the Alaska Board of Game, Boards Support Section at: P.O. Box 115526, Juneau, AK 99811-5526. Online at: ADF&G Game Board , by email to firstname.lastname@example.org (PDF format only), as well as by fax to (907) 465-6094.
Again, at this point your comment will only be accepted by fax which must be sent before January 7th, 2017.
The Interior Department stood strongly against this sort of Intensive Predator Management on Kenai notifying ADF&G (file) that Refuge Lands must be excluded or the Service would make use of its own regulatory authorities to ensure adherence with legal mandates, regulations and policies.
My apologies for the inexcusably late notice. Please take action today.
Feature image, with permission, by Chris Montano Jr.
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