I’m just sad about this —
To be clear, I’m not against hunting in general. I don’t do it, but I understand why it’s necessary and beneficial, so if someone else wants to kill it, I’ll eat it :). From what I know, wolves aren’t good eating — they taste too much like dog.
So — since eating the hunted animal is the main reason it’s acceptable to me, how about the other reason — culture. There are a lot of families that hunt together every year. They plan the hunt, go out together, later they divide up the meat and all along enjoying the company. It’s tradition — and I’m good with that. The thing is, there is NO wolf hunting tradition — you can’t have a “tradition” after one season, at least not a very strong one… so, that’s out.
Besides that — the thing about wolves is that they’re predators — so they serve to keep the white-tailed deer population in check — in fact, the reason deer need to be hunted is that we spent a lot of effort to kill off the wolves. Once there were no wolves, the deer population increased. The implications of this are seen across the ecosystem.. you can go look them up if you want.. So, just when the wolf population is growing enough to begin to be the natural balancing force, we decide it’s a good idea to kill them. yea… right.
The more persuasive reason as to why shooting wolves is wrong came from my friend Mike. He argues that wolves have a complex pack structure — (deer do not) and if someone kills the alpha instead of letting the alpha die of old age.., the rest of the pack may well dissolve and possibly die. so, kill one wolf and lots more are likely to die — sure, good idea.
Why in the heck don’t we just leave them alone. Maybe create a new category for them — semi-protected or something… so that they can be killed IFF (logic for if and only if) they are a direct threat to cattle operations AND other methods of control haven’t worked. Setting up a schedule to hunt them, issuing wolf hunting licenses etc — just sends the message that there’s another “cool” thing to hunt — and it makes me ill. I wonder if I’ll live long enough to see the implications of this stupid-ass move? I hope so, because this post and the others like it will be the ignored warning, and while I’d rather they just not kill wolves, it will be good to be right.