I was not going to publish these Letter I received from the Mayor and his fellow councilors but in light of resent request to bow-hunt deer and wolves I have decided I will post them. The letter I sent to our mayor can be found at the bottom.
Herb Pond our mayor
Thanks for sharing your thoughts and your experience. I’ve copied this to Council and to key staff.
At this time Council has given no thought to a wolf cull, or to bow hunting. The presentation from COS was for information only, and as you rightly point out, while a wolf cull was included as an option in the report, it was not spoken of very favourably. They did seem to speak more positively about reducing all food sources on the island including deer.
My sense is that the presentation from COS reduced support for a wolf cull and increased interest in attempting solutions more along the lines that you describe.
Thanks, again. H
Gord; Sounds like we have a resident expert who could be a great help to staff in formulating any program. H
From Tony Briglio
Thank you for the added knowledge you bring to us. There is no truth in council suggesting a wolf hunt take place. I would agree that this would only be a temporary solution and as such does not resolve anything.
Thanks again for the time you took to educate us further.
From Kathy Bedard
Thanks for your input, David. I do not believe that we must kill wolves for doing what they do naturally. It’s the humans that we must re-educate.
From Sheila Gordon-Payne
Thanks for your letter Mr Watson,
I found it very informative and wish that this type of information was in the paper for the benefit of all.
The options put forward at our meeting were not at our request but just to let us know the possibilities.
I agree with the Mayor that there are many options far less drastic that we could do to manage wolf issues, most notably, more public education etc.
Dear mayor and counselors
My name is David Watson; my family since 2006 has been tracking the wolves of Kaien Island; some of you may have even seen our website kaien island wolves.com. In 2007 we worked with The Raincoast Conservation Foundation, collecting wolf scat for parasite testing.
The Raincoast Conservation Foundation is a non-profit research and public education organization. Who work with scientists, First Nations, government and non-governmental organizations to build support for decisions that protect marine and rainforest habitat on BC’s central and north coast.
We read in Thursday Jan 31,2008 Daily News about the possible killing of the local wolf pack. This wolf pack consists of 7 to 9 individuals I know since we have been watching them that the numbers have not changed even when pups have been born over the last 3 years, the death rate is high among the wolves that live on the island, vehicle hits have taken the lives of more than one wolf, Also one wolf succumbed to his injuries from an encounter with a porcupine this past summer. We understand that a few wolves from the pack have become conditioned to humans through behaviors from some residents living in the Prince Rupert area.
Some of the behaviors are directly having a negative impact on the perception that wolves are at fault when it’s the actions of some individuals that have led to the reactions from some of the wolves from the pack.
There are people in the community who have been hand feeding wild wolves. Thinking their doing that animal a favor; “a fed wolf is a dead wolf”.
The illegal dumping of animal carcasses on Wontage road, I have seen and photographed deer, moose and elk carcasses, I also documented bags of dumped whole crabs, and salmon. These bring in scavengers such as wolves and bear’s. Which in turn bring them closer in to town?
And of course we have the deer, the main diet of the coastal wolf, and we all know that we have too many deer.
Some facts on the coastal wolf, the coastal wolf is genetically different then the wolves from the interior of BC, the coastal wolves may even be older then the gray wolf that is found in BC, and Alaska. The coastal wolf has a varied diet; it consists of deer, salmon, shell fish, berries, mice and other types of sea foods. On some of the furthest island wolves have thriven and adapted to an all seafood diet.
There are 5 packs of wolves in a 25 mile radius of Kaien Island, one pack on Digby Island, a pack near the salt lakes, one pack on the other side of port ED and a pack near Kloaya Bay. It would be only a matter of time before another pack moves in.
We don’t think that a wolf cull is the solution to the problem we are having. Many communities have problems with wild life and have been able to deal with the problem in a pro active way and sparing the life of a wild animal. As the CO has informed you, that a wolf cull is only a short time fix, the deer population needs to be seriously look at, the illegal dumping on Wantage road and as well keeping the gates closed to the dump during winter months, all of which draw wolves and other wild life into city limits, And in to conflicts with human population.
Chris Darimont is a world renowned wolf biologist who has spent many years studying the coastal wolves of BC I would hope that the city would be in contact with someone like Chris who lives on the coast and has great knowledge of the wolves. Chris and Heather Bryan have been very helpful with our endeavor of bringing wolf awareness to Prince Rupert and the world through our stories, photos and videos.
The proposal of opening up hunting to bow hunters on the island is frightening more so then a few problem wolves. I know there will be far more wolves shot with an arrow that will die a slow, frightening and painful death on account of poor marksmanship, than would be the case if shooting were allowed.
Please feel free to contacts to discuss solutions that are more pro active then bow hunting on the island.
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