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Alaska wildlife group digs into reason for Denali Park decision

[large thumbnail url=”alaska-wildlife-group-digs-into-reason-for-denali-park-decision” filename=”news” year=”2010″ month=”03″ day=”16″] [thumbnail icon url=”alaska-wildlife-group-digs-into-reason-for-denali-park-decision” filename=”news” year=”2010″ month=”03″ day=”16″] An Alaska Wildlife Alliance memo reveals a lot of interesting information regarding the Alaska Board of Game that voted to remove the buffer zone for wolves which surrounded Denali National Park.

 

Help Remove Al Barrette from Alaska’s Board of Game and help save our remaining wolves.

Wolves are under tremendous pressure in Alaska from hunters, trappers and anti-predator decision-makers. Yet wolves are vital components of a healthy ecosystem.

The Problem:

On March 5, 2010, the Alaska Board of Game voted 4-3 to eliminate all buffer zones around Denali National Park. These zones, established in 2000, were intended to protect members of the park’s wolf packs whose ranges go slightly outside the park.

The Board of Game’s seven members all hunt. Several are also trappers. The present board is strongly anti-predator as is evident in many recent decisions.

The net effect of this buffer zone decision is that now trappers can set their snares, leghold or body traps right up to the park boundaries, boundaries which wildlife do not understand.

Who is Al Barrette?

Mr. Barrette is the most recent appointment to the Board of Game. His was one of the 4 votes eliminating the buffer zones.

With this vote he ignored the wishes of over 100,000 park visitors and Alaskans to favor 3 or 4 recreational trappers.

Because Al Barrette has not yet been approved by the Legislature, he is vulnerable to being removed from the Board when the Joint Legislative Session is held at which appointments are acted upon.

Some points of consideration about Mr. Barrette and the BOG are:

* The BOG creates all aerial hunting regulations.
* Mr. Barrette is proud his was the first such permit.
* The BOG creates all trapping regulations.
* Mr. Barrette has patented and manufactures a wolf trap.
* Mr. Barrette owns a fur tannery in Fairbanks.
* Mr. Barrette is yet another hunter on a board meant to represent all Alaskans, not just the hunter/trapper residents.
* Mr. Barrette’s perspective on wildlife management does not use the wealth of scientific data and methods available (see Shannyn Moore’s article Skinning the Truth for Mr. Barrette’s perspective on how “original sin” and wildlife management are connected).

What Can You Do?

If you are a resident of Alaska, using the above talking points (as well as others you might derive from your own views) you should:

Contact your district state representative
Contact your state senator
Contact Governor Parnell (or call him at 907.465.3500)

Additional useful contacts include:

The Tourism Board
The Boards and Commissions Office (boards@alaska.gov) (and/or call 907.465.3934)

If you are not a resident of Alaska, you should contact Governor Parnell and the Tourism Board. Tourism is Alaska’s second largest revenue source and many businesses in Alaska depend on it.

Do not underestimate the power of your email or phone call!

The Legislature usually receives little public input on appointments so you may have more effect than you realize.

REMEMBER – Little Red Riding Hood Lied!

As professional wildlife photographers who have spent 15 years working with the Toklat wolves of Denali National Park,Dorothy Keeler and her husband Leo have been — and have seen others — within 10 feet of wild wolves literally hundreds of times and have documented their reactions to humans… none of which were in the least bit menacing or threatening.

Please see these photos of how these wild wolves naturally behave around humans when they discover that they won’t be harmed or fed.

Then share these links with people who think otherwise.

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” — Edmund Burke

For more information, check out the web site of the Alaska Wildlife Alliance.

Original story: Alaska’s Denali wolves lose protective buffer

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