Editorial: Game and Fish Should Wait For Full Wolf EIS
One letter from you can reach thousands of people and will also likely be read by decision-makers. Tips and talking points are below, but please write in your own words, from your own experience. Don’t try to include all the talking points in your letter.
- Start by thanking the paper for this article.
- The USFWS should move forward now with allowing new wolves to be released throughout the Blue Range Wolf Recovery Area. The Mexican gray wolf is the most endangered mammal in the U.S. with only about 83 in the wild. Additional populations of Mexican wolves are necessary to their recovery and genetic health, as is the ability for wolves to move between populations. Numerous wolves are in captive breeding facilities around the country, prepared for, and awaiting, release.
- The actions of AZ Game and Fish show why wolves need federal protections. Scientists have said that far more wolves are needed for the Mexican gray wolf to achieve recovery. AZ Game and Fish’s proposal would keep the number artificially low, and allow endangered wolves to be killed for a much broader range of reasons than is currently allowed.
- Wolves need freedom from boundaries. Given room to roam, the wolves will establish themselves in suitable areas with adequate game. The USFWS proposal and the AZ Game and Fish alternative do not allow wolves to establish new packs and populations in additional areas that are essential to their recovery. Capturing and moving wolves because they roam beyond an artificial boundary is always a risky business that can result in death or trauma to the wolf.
- Wolves once lived throughout Arizona and New Mexico and played a critical role in keeping the balance of nature in place. We need to restore this important animal that has been missing for too long. Wildlife biologists believe that Mexican wolves will improve the overall health of the Southwest and its rivers and streams – just as the return of gray wolves to Yellowstone has helped restore balance to its lands and waters.
- The USFWS should designate Mexican gray wolves as essential. The 83 wolves in the wild have up to four generations of experience in establishing packs and raising pups and are over 22% of all of the Mexican wolves in the world. The fourth generation wild lobos are not expendable and are essential to recovering this unique subspecies of wolf. By labeling all of the wild wolves as “nonessential” the USFWS ignores science and the reality of 16 years of experience with reintroducing wolves.
- The USFWS needs to quit stalling and complete a comprehensive recovery plan. USFWS admits that their 1982 recovery plan is not scientifically sound and does not meet current legal requirements – yet in its proposed rule USFWS continues to emphasize a woefully inadequate population of only 100 wolves in the wild.
- Arizona Game and Fish is once again trying to obstruct Mexican wolf recovery with this “alternative". AZ Game and Fish should honor its responsibility to all of Arizona’s wildlife and citizens by supporting rule changes that promote Mexican wolf recovery instead of hindering it.
- Polls show 83% of Arizona voters and 80% of New Mexico voters support Mexican wolf recovery. Polls also show overwhelming support – 81% in Arizona and 73% in New Mexico – for restoring wolves in the Grand Canyon region and northern New Mexico, areas of suitable habitat that scientists say are vital for the wolves in order to recover.
- People who care about wolf recovery and want to help can find more information at mexicanwolves.org.
- Thank the paper for publishing this article.
- Include something about who you are and why you care: E.g. “I am mother, outdoors person, teacher, business owner, scientific, religious, etc.)
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