19 organizations call for full protection of Algonquin wolves
TORONTO, Aug. 16 2016 /CNW/ - On Friday July 22nd, the Ontario government announced plans that will allow hunters and trappers to kill at-risk Algonquin wolves across the majority of their range. The plan requires an erosion of the automatic protection that was said to be afforded by the Endangered Species Act (ESA) following the wolves' up-listing to Threatened status on June 15th 2016. The plans are open to the public for commenting until August 22nd.
As few as 154 mature animals, or 65% of the global population, inhabit Ontario. The proposals will limit protection to 3 small areas in addition to the existing protection in and around Algonquin Provincial Park. Beyond these areas, hunters and trappers will be permitted to kill the rare wolves.
A large coalition of organizations has gathered together to call for range-wide protection of Algonquin wolves, as well as eastern coyotes and their hybrids, neither of which can be visually differentiated from the at-risk wolves.
"Ontario is transparently prioritizing a minority of people who profit from the slaughter of wolves and coyotes over the recovery of a species at risk," says Hannah Barron, Director of Wildlife Conservation Campaigns for Earthroots. "It is appalling that the government would continue to ignore their own research showing that without more extensive protection from hunting and trapping, the Algonquin wolf population will not recover."
Photos of Algonquin wolves will be made available upon request.
For further information: Hannah Barron, Director of Wildlife Conservation Campaigns, Earthroots, (647) 567-8337, [email protected]