Date: 27th April 2016
Ask yourself: Does it make sense to destroy an entire ecosystem in the name of single species recovery? A recently proposed experimental plan put forward by the Alberta government would have us think so. While we fully endorse protecting caribou and habitat, widespread killing programs and fenced enclosures do NOT align with the purpose of conservation.
Will YOU help spread the word that Alberta’s newly released draft plan for fencing off caribou suggests killing wolves for up to the next 50 years? Other species will be killed under the guise of caribou recovery as well.
On June 8th 2016, the Alberta government announced a new draft plan for caribou recovery in North and Central Alberta. According to the federal Species At Risk Act and its 2012 Recovery Strategy for the Woodland Caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou), Boreal population, in Canada, Alberta’s official plan for caribou recovery is due by 2017.
The plan proposed by Alberta for the recovery of the the A La Peche and Little Smokey caribou herds suggests creating a bloodbath so that industry can continue. The province is proposing to fence off a large area for caribou and then kill wolves, deer, elk, and moose…while continuing to convert habitat through industry into land that supports the very animals targeted for killing. This is basically DIRTY OIL and the world needs to know about it!
Read our joint media statement in collaboration with scientists and NGO’s across Canada, “Alberta’s draft caribou protection plan criticized for protecting industrial development at the expense of wildlife”
This plan is yet another case of politics and industry trumping ecology and ethics. Note that AB has killed more than one thousand wolves in this area over the past 11 years with no significant increase in caribou numbers! Wolves were killed in strangling snares, gunned down from helicopters and poisoned using elk and moose killed and laced with strychnine. Being indiscriminate weapons, snares killed 676 other animals, including 2 caribou.
Numerous scientists and conservation organizations vehemently oppose the idea of predator kill programs, yet their expertise and input continues to go ignored. YOUR voice is needed now more than ever! According to SARA’s 2012 Recovery Strategy for Caribou, the Little Smokey caribou herd already has had 95% of its habitat disturbed by oil and gas infrastructure.
Congratulations is certainly due to the province on its announcement to place future efforts on restoration and protection of habitat. This is an essential step in helping to recover and maintain caribou as a self-sustaining species. However, if caribou are indeed the priority, WHY is industry allowed to continue within essential habitat?
Misguided media coverage has provided a notion that fencing off caribou will help the Alberta government wean itself off of killing wolves and using poison. These are some sweet-sounding promises and suggestions, but let’s not kid ourselves…predator killing is slated to continue for the next 5 decades according to the draft plan. Stopping the use of the wide-reaching and horrific poisons Strychnine and Compound 1080 is something that should have happened decades ago, and although this is a welcome announcement that needs to be carried out throughout the province, it does not justify the fencing experiment.
From a conservation perspective, management should be FOR wildlife rather than OF wildlife. Widespread killing programs do not align with conservation. As a society, we need to address both moral and conservation dilemmas – specifically the question of doing harm to do good. Will you comment on Alberta’s proposal for another 50 years of predator control programs in areas humans continue to impoverish the future of these small and isolated sub-populations of Woodland caribou through industrial activity and recreation? Tell #Alberta #abpoli that #Caribou need #ForestsNotFences and #NoWolfCull
Public feedback on the proposal will be accepted until August 5th
We have prepared some background information and an outline of our major concerns. Please consider using this as a tool to learn as much as you can so that comments are informed and cannot go ignored.
Join our Thunderclap Campaign to spread the word about what is happening and to encourage public participation.
The Honourable Rachel Notley, Premier
Phone: 780 427-2251
The Honourable Shannon Phillips
Minister of Environment and Parks
Phone: 780 427-2391
Deputy Minister Bill Werry
Environment and Sustainable Resource Development
Phone: (780) 427-1799
Executive Director Fish and Wildlife Policy Branch Environment and Parks
Phone: 780 427-7763
Sue Cotterill ,Section Head
Species at Risk, Non-Game and Wildlife Disease Policy Environment and Parks
Phone: 780 422-9535
Contacting your local MLA and asking them to raise the issue at the provincial level is one of the best ways to provoke change. Consider including your local editor and/or other newspapers too.
Posted in: Alert