Hunting Snippets – Global.


Lone wolf shot

At the beginning of Nov, a lone female grey wolf made international headlines after she was spotted in the Kaibab National Forest north of the Grand Canyon National Park, marking the first time one has been seen in Arizona in 70 years.

She was wearing a radio collar, and DNA testing confirmed that she had travelled all the way from the Northern Rockies, nearly 450 miles away. Later named Echo in an online naming contest, her presence raised hope that this iconic species could continue to disperse and establish desperately needed new territories essential for wolf recovery in the Southwest.

Sadly, her life and the hope that came with her are believed to have been cut tragically short by a coyote hunter in Utah who is confirmed to have killed a collared grey wolf.

According to the Utah’s Division of Wildlife Resources (DWR), the unnamed hunter shot the wolf in question a few miles away from Beaver near the Tushar Mountains. He called the DWR to report the kill after finding the collar and realizing she wasn’t a coyote. The DWR then contacted the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which confirmed the wolf was a young female who was collared in Cody, Wyo. Echo’s advocates are still waiting for confirmation via DNA testing that it was her, but they fear the worst.  Wolves still have federal protection in most of Utah, but the anti-predator crowd has made it clear that they and coyotes are unwelcome.

In 2012, Utah started offering a $50 bounty to encourage killing coyotes under the guise of a predator control programme even though coyotes could already be killed year round in unlimited numbers. Last year, Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife successfully convinced politicians to fork over $300,000 from the state’s general fund to lobby against wolves, who don’t even exist in the state, while the DWR wants them stripped of any and all protection.

Wanton killing of coyotes and cases of mistaken identity have also threatened red wolf recovery in N. Carolina and Mexican grey wolf recovery in Arizona and New Mexico. The issue also raises serious concerns about the cruel, misguided and unregulated targeting of coyotes who are also a vital part of healthy ecosystems – yet have been continuously left out in the cold with no protection, despite the fact that they also suffer as a result of hunting and trapping.

Culling wolves doesn’t save the lives of the sheep and cattle they feed on, according to new research which found that the more wolves that are killed the greater the risk to local livestock of being eaten.

Washington State University researchers discovered that it is counterproductive to shoot and trap wolves because losses in their numbers change the animals’ social behaviour, and encourages them to eat more sheep and cattle.

While an intact breeding pair of wolves will keep young offspring from mating, disruption can set more sexually mature wolves free to breed, leading to an increase in breeding pairs.  An increase in pups means they become bound to one location and can’t roam more widely to hunt deer and elk as freely – so they turn to livestock.

SAV Comment – we have always used a very similar defence (to that above) for foxes against hunts and the issue of hunting.  Normally only the Alpha female (vixen) will have young; all other females in the pack do not; instead they teach the young newborns how to grow up and be secure.  If the hunt kill the Alpha vixen during one of their ego trips; then all the other females suddenly compete and all become pregnant to attempt a higher ranking to Alpha vixen.  With the one original Alpha; she may have say 4 or 5 cubs.  If the hunt kill her and 3 or 4 other females in the pack then all try to become Alpha; you end up with say 16-20 new cubs in the pack rather than the controlled and limited 4 or 5.  Lots more foxes; lots more hunting for food.  And the hunts claim that they control fox populations by hunting them ? !! – don’t think so; they encourage MORE foxes to be born rather than less.  But then the real story is that they do not cut numbers, they breed more = more to hunt.. Hunts do not control wildlife numbers !!



Whaling curtailed in Iceland

On 16th Dec. representatives of all 6 parties with delegates in Reykjavik council introduced a resolution urging the minister of fisheries to enlarge the whale sanctuary in Faxaflói Bay, just outside Reykjavik.  Since whaling resumed in Iceland in 2003, after a pause of 13 years, almost all of the minke whaling has been taking place in Faxaflói and 80% of it at the very border of the whale watching area, resulting in clashes between Reykjavík whale watching operators and the small but influential group of active whaling supporters.  In the spring of 2013 the former minister of fisheries, decided to enlarge the whale watching area by a relatively small amount, to which the whalers responded by saying it would mean the end of minke whaling.  The current minister, sympathetic to the whalers’ cause, made it one of his first tasks to put the whale watching area back where it was before.  Traditionally the centre/right Progressive Party and the right wing Independence Party have been more supportive of the whaling but now that has changed, at least in Reykjavík.  All parties, across political lines, voted last week in favour of the resolution calling for the whale sanctuary to be enlarged, and therefore in fact for whaling to leave Faxaflói Bay.  Only one council member abstained, but nobody voted against. This is very good news for whales and for IFAW, which has campaigned to end the cruel and unnecessary whaling in Iceland for more than 11 years.  This positive result has been brought about by close cooperation between different stakeholders within Iceland, mainly the Icelandic Tourism Association and Icewhale (the organisation of whale watch operators) as well as open-minded politicians.  More than 100,000 tourists go whale watching from Reykjavík alone, making it the single biggest organised tourism activity in the city.  This cannot be ignored anymore. The strong partnership between IFAW and Icewhale, resulting in the Meet Us Don´t Eat Us project, Whale Friendly Restaurants and much more has opened the eyes of people within Iceland for the need for change and informed foreign tourists about the importance of choosing responsible whale watching rather than a cruel hunting activity that has no place in the 21st Century.


Norway’s parliament has voted to scrap a controversial subsidy for seal hunting, potentially spelling the end of the much-criticised activity, a lawmaker told AFP


Botswana intends to ban canned hunting – in a statement made last week the Ministry of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism said it “does not tolerate cruelty to our wildlife in any form.” The move follows the implementation of bans on both trophy hunting and the export of wildlife (excluding pets) in January of this year.


Pine Martens

A leaked plan by the hunting lobby to remove pine martens from ­Scottish ­woodlands has sparked fierce opposition from wildlife groups which suspect landowners of planning a cull to protect their lucrative grouse stocks.

The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT), a charity funded by landowners, farmers and sporting interests, wants to launch a trial next year to trap and relocate pine martens, which are protected under law as an endangered species.  But the plan has been condemned as “deeply flawed” by experts who fear it could open the door to the widespread killing of pine martens. It has also been rejected by the RSPB, which owns 2 of the woodlands where the trial had been proposed.  3 of the forests – Rothiemurchus, Glenmore and Inshriach are owned by the Forestry Commission and one – Kinveachy – by the 13th Earl of Seafield.

The purpose of the trial is to test whether martens are harming the prospects of another endangered species, capercaillie, by eating their eggs and chicks. These birds have declined from 20,000 in 1970 to about 1200, many of which share ­Strathspey woodlands with martens.  But conservationists suspect ­ulterior motives. They point out that landowners and gamekeepers have been increasingly pushing for the right to cull pine martens in order to protect red grouse so they can be shot for sport.

The Mammal ­Society, which promotes science- based conservation, has written to the Government’s wildlife agency, Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH), expressing “deep concern” about the proposed trial. Evidence in support of it was poor, the society said, and there were no organisations willing to take any relocated martens.  “If this trial were to go ahead it is very likely to generate immense negative publicity both for SNH and the Scottish Government, not just within the UK but internationally,” the society concluded. “This will be particularly vociferous if the fate of the removed pine martens is to be culled. It will also greatly damage the reputation of Scotland as a destination for wildlife tourism.”

One of letter’s authors was the chairman of the Mammal Society and a leading pine marten specialist, Dr Johnny Birks. “Instead of pursuing a flawed scheme to remove it, we should be celebrating the marten’s return to Speyside,” he said.  “Unlike our Victorian ancestors, thankfully we now understand that predation is a natural component of healthy ecosystems. Pine martens have coexisted in a stable predator-prey balance with capercaillie in forests across northern Europe for thousands of years.”

Gamekeeper jailed

A gamekeeper found guilty of killing a rare bird and setting traps illegally to capture 2 others on an Aberdeenshire estate has been sentenced to 4 months in prison. George Mutch, of Kildrummy, was accused of recklessly killing or injuring a goshawk and illegally taking away another goshawk and a buzzard in 2012.

Mutch was found guilty of 4 charges at Aberdeen Sheriff Court in Dec. Sheriff Noel McPartlin said he would consider a custodial sentence.  It is one of the first times in Scotland that hidden camera footage, obtained by the RSPB, had been used in a case of this kind.

For more info on gamekeepers jailed or fined (there are lots) go to:

Serbia: Charge Made Against Subotica City Council For Non Compliance With Serbian Animal Welfare Legislation.

Serbian  Flag


Serbian campaigners have been busy – above is their charge against Subotica City Council because it still has no legal shelter within the City.

It would seem that the republic veterinary inspector had a ban in place for the catching of street dogs and cats; and also demanded a new contract be established within the next 60 days with a new shelter – because JAZIP Vrbas  city had deleted its existing contract with Subotica city because it appears they were exporting dogs to other facilities from the shelter at Subotica.

A criminal charge has been brought against JAZIP because the firm does not have enough places for Vrbas’s city dogs; a city which needs 300-400 new places every year.  JAZIP only has the capacity for 200 dogs and Subotica city is taking in 800-900 new stray dogs and cats every year.

It appears that the technical director (who you can see on the video link given in the above attachment) has declared that the (Subotica)  city will catch, sterilise and then throw out onto the streets many of the animals – which is forbidden by Serbian animal welfare laws.

This is also proof that now in 2015, Subotica city still has no legal shelter facility and that by throwing animals back onto the streets, it is also acting illegally here.  Animal welfare legislation has existed since 2009 and Subotica City does still not implement the correct Serbian animal welfare legislation.