Square Peg: Manitoba Hunters Romanticized Champions of Environment

27. Dec. 2017

© Debbie Wall / OgFOMK ArTS -- 2018 All Rights Reserved. - Square Peg - Manitoba Hunters Romanticized Champions of Environment
Manitoba Hunters Romanticized Champions of Environment

Hunters are always trying to romanticize themselves as the champions of the environment, but they are the only ones who equate killing with conservation.  Their focus is on sustainable yield rather than balanced ecosystems and certainly not on the well-being of the individual animals who are victims of their so-called "sport".  None of the profits of the hunting industry are directed towards the wildlife rescues and rehabilitation organizations who deal with the resulting injured and orphaned.
True predators play an integral role in maintaining the health of prey species by selecting the weak and diseased.  Human hunters, on the other hand, target the biggest and most robust.  I suppose a sickly animal does not provide a good photo op.
While the killing of females during the spring black bear "hunt" may be illegal, that certainly doesn't mean it doesn't happen.  Mother bears will cache their babies in trees for their safety while feeding is especially true when they are competing with hungry males at bait stations.  Determining the sex of a large, dark, hairy animal from the safety of tree stands is virtually impossible and lactating females are inevitably shot.  Hunters may hesitate to inform authorities as to their mistake and/or locate the cubs who are doomed to die a slow lingering death.
The hunting of polar bears may or may not be legal in Manitoba, but that doesn't mean it, too, doesn't happen.  How many conservation officers are available to enforce this law in our vast arctic?  Also, polar bears travel hundreds of kilometers and don't recognize lines on a map.  Mother bears could be killed in other provinces/territories and the resulting orphans could make their way into Manitoba.
It is illegal for the public to feed wildlife to help reduce conflict, but bear baiters are allowed to use food to lure their victims to their deaths.  Just because an activity is legal does not mean it is ethical and there are many, hunters included, who find killing animals for trophies in a manner akin to shooting fish in a barrel to be anything but.

Deb & The Gang of Fur -- Debbie Wall
Deb & The Gang of Fur

On December 22 the Freep printed a letter from a hunter who took issue with my orphaned bear letter.   I was surprised they printed it so long after the fact since my letter had appeared Dec. 8th.  No doubt aforementioned hunter must have been stewing the whole time to get a rebuttal.  This is my response to what they said.  Hope you had a good X-Moose!  Deb & The Gang of Fur

© Debbie Wall / OgFOMK ArTS -- 2018 All Rights Reserved. - Square Peg - Manitoba Hunters Romanticized Champions of Environment

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