Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Bear hunting needs change


Recently, a professionally guided Tennessee "hunter" shot and killed a grizzly bear over bait in a remote road-free area on the Clearwater National Forest.

Neither shooting a carnivore attracted to smelly bear bait, nor shooting a frightened bear that has been treed by hounds, has anything to do with the sport of hunting and matching wits with an animal during a fair chase.

Clearly, the reason the grizzly was killed is because the Idaho Department of Fish and Game refuses to prohibit the archaic practices of bear-baiting and hound-hunting that so many other states stopped years ago.

For decades, it has been well known that the conservative state Legislature of Idaho opposes the reintroduction or general wellbeing of any rare animal (including the grizzly) anywhere in the state. Why? To keep animals from becoming extinct. The Endangered Species Act of 1973 imposes restrictions on development within a listed species' critical habitat.

The Idaho Legislature cares much more for maintaining development opportunities than it does the extinction of a magnificent animal like the grizzly bear ... and Fish and Game maintains the regulations to please the legislature.

Dick Artley

Grangeville




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