Park Service is Wrong on Predator Control

Response to Sept 4, 2014 Alaska Dispatch News Article: “Park service moves to block predator control on federal land in Alaska

When will these meddling outsiders get it through their heads, in most of Alaska “hunting” does not mean going out in the woods with a couple buddies and a few cases of beer to shoot animals as something to do when there are no sports of TV. This is how people eat, its about survival. All you self-proclaimed “environmentalists” are so worried about carbon emissions, think about what it takes to farm raise beef, process, freeze, then fly by jet to the grocery stores here in remote Alaska; and compare that to sustainable local harvest of delicious and nutritious wildlife.

The National Parks Service controls an area of Alaska that is about the same size as Massachusetts,Vermont, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware, Rhode Island, Maryland, and West Virginia combined. If it was up to me, Alaska would completely take over ownership and management of all federal lands in the state except for military reservations and small areas around national monuments.

The locals know when there are too many predators. Local traditional knowledge, combined with modern tagging, tracking, and other assessment methods tell us how to manage wildlife to the maximum benefit of the people. And if locals decide that tourists looking at wolves is more important than eating moose, then the wolves will find their way to that area. If the locals want the helicopter gunships to come back and take care of the exploding wolf and bear populations, then let them. Predator control is not about sportsmanship, it’s about survival.

I trust local people to govern over their own lives, they are the most responsive to changing situations and needs, they are the ones that must live with the consequences.