The U.P. Wolf Hunt is set to begin in less than ten days, but one coalition is urging Governor Snyder to put an end to it before it even starts.
Keep Michigan Wolves Protected wants the Governor to restore accountability to voters and let them decide whether or not there should be a hunt during the 2014 election season. The conservation group has been voicing concerns over the issue since Public Act 520 was first signed into law in December of 2012. The statute designated wolves as a game species and gave the Natural Resources Commission the authority to establish an open season on the once endangered species.
“The legislature changed the law [Public Act 21], and of course, the Governor signed that into law. Now, we are working on a new effort to repeal Public Act 21 of 2013. That, if we succeed, would put the question on the ballot, ‘Are we willing to let a politically-appointed board make those decisions, to decide what animals can be hunted?'” asked Jackie Winkowski, a volunteer for Keep Michigan Wolves Protected. “U.P. residents, all Michiganders, have been active in contacting their legislature. It just doesn’t seem that they listened.”
Winkowski presented those same issues to the Natural Resources Commission at their public input meeting last month, but it hasn’t appeared to affect the decision regarding next week’s hunt.
A recent study emboldened the coalition’s concerns, indicating that that 60 percent of the wolf-livestock incidents occurred on one farm. The farm in question has a reported history of poor animal care, including leaving dead carcasses out for wolves to feast on.