Sunday, February 22, 2009

Call for end to USDA's wildlife killing agency

That's the title of an AP article I just found.
This is good news for wildlife and all of us who are sick and tired of the Department of Livestock slaughtering native species!

The article is from last week and states that "115 environmental groups signed onto a recent letter to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack urging him to abolish the U.S. Agriculture Department's Wildlife Services."

Currently tax payers are subsidizing a "$100 million program that kills more than 1 million wild animals annually, a program ranchers and farmers have defended for nearly a century as critical to protecting their livestock from predators."

Who oversees Wildlife Services? APHIS (surprise surprise)

What are some stats from this program? In 2007 121,524 carnivores were killed at the request of ranchers. As well as, "Hundreds of thousands of other animals, including ravens and raccoons, also are killed through the program." Black bears and endangered gray wolves are also among these according to the article.

Carol Bannerman, a spokeswoman for the USDA says that when they are given a request they review each individual project "and move ahead only if there would be no long-term negative impact on the environment." What does this mean? Like they haven't had a "long-term negative impact on the environment." The whole industry is a negative impact. They've been killing buffalo and wolves for 200 years to get land for their livestock.

As stated in 1874 by U.S. Representative Conger,
"They (buffalo) eat the grass. They trample upon the plains upon which our settlers desire to herd their cattle and their sheep. They range over the very pastures where the settlers keep their herds of cattle. They destroy the pasture."

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