Thursday, July 07, 2022

Consequences for wildlife we cherish

by Debo Powers
| January 12, 2022 1:00 AM

I love living on the edge of Glacier National Park. Every time that I see a grizzly bear or a lynx and every time that I hear wolves howling or elk bugling, I feel like I am the luckiest person in the world to be able to live here. Wildlife is what makes Montana a very special place.

So, it was with a great deal of dismay that I read that Governor Gianforte is asking the federal government to end the protection of grizzly bears and return the management to the state.

As a result of the draconian anti-wildlife bills that passed in the 2021 Montana Legislature which were signed into law by Gianforte, it is obvious that the state of Montana is not capable of managing grizzly bears responsibly. Wildlife management decisions should be made by professional wildlife experts based on science rather than by politicians who have no experience in management issues.

Breaking with our long Montana tradition of bipartisan wildlife protection, Republican lawmakers voted to harm many wild species like wolves, grizzly bears, black bears, and bison in the last legislative session.

Montanans have always valued “fair chase” rules in hunting, but using snares, baiting, lights at night, and hounds violates these values and taints the sport.

People who care about Montana’s wildlife need to stop voting Republican without considering the dire consequences for the wildlife that we cherish.

Debo Powers, Polebridge

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