Friday, April 18, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
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My turn: ‘Good news’ is bad news on mountain lions

By
From page A4 | October 02, 2013 | 3 Comments

The California Department of Fish and Wildllfe has sent out a news release touting the “success” of DFW Director Charlton Bonham’s new policy to be kindler and gentler to mountain lions threatening people, pets and livestock. What would you expect?

They say that they have seen “a significant reduction” in mountain lions killed as a result of the policy,” but go on to say “without a risk to public safety.” How can that be? If there are mountain lions killing stock or pets, or in close association with humans, how can not eliminating them be “without risk?” The new policy does what the animal-rights organizations have been wanting — using non-lethal options — and Bonham listened and acted.

“I’m pleased that we have struck the balance and are witnessing fewer mountain lions killed without sacrificing any wildlife officer’s authority to make the correct public safety call for each situation,” said Bonham. But that’s not what those wildlife officers are saying behind the scene. The ones we spoke with have said unequivocally that “their hands are tied” by the new policy, and they are concerned about lions that have lost their fear of man still living and killing in inhabited areas.

“Sometimes you can find a mountain lion or bear in an unusual location otherwise behaving normally,” said CDFW Law Enforcement Chief Mike Carion. “It isn’t always a threat to public safety. Every situation is unique. We are pleased that this policy allows us to evaluate each situation carefully and to choose a solution which allows a co-existence between humans and wildlife while allowing discretion to act when there is a public safety issue.”

Meanwhile, while the in-field officers are “evaluating each decision,” and communicating with those who ultimately make the decision, the lions and bears are long gone, or temporarily scared away, leaving the threat unsecured and still in existence.

Combine this new policy with it now being illegal to hunt bears with dogs, and with the ever-increasing population of predators in this state continuing to grow and kill — and there will be far more encounters of the dangerous kind in the future, thanks to Mr. Bonham’s bowing, once again, to the animal-rights extremists.

Bill Karr is Northern California editor of Western Outdoor News.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 3 comments

  • 1036-FrankOctober 02, 2013 - 10:57 am

    The liberals will do as good a job managing wildlife as they have done with the forests and they will create the same type of dangers from their preservationist ideas. Nature has always been managed by natural forces which keeps populations in balance, if natural balance population control is removed it makes everything out of balance. Predators will increase unchecked under the liberal system and seek out new habitat and prey, which will lead to trouble. Maybe a load of freshly trapped lions and bears let go at the capitol would get the message out as to what is really going on outside of their guarded and gated urban homes.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • rodOctober 02, 2013 - 11:15 am

    Sooner, rather than later, someone's child, wife, sister or dad will be killed by a lion that has lost its fear of humans. Locally, we are getting closer to that day, not because it has happened several times in the past, but because we don't chase them with dogs and shoot them when they get too close. CDFW took over that role when prop 117 was VOTED (?) into reality... and now they are squirming out of that responsibility for 'enviroligion ethics'. We must scrutinize and hold responsible CDFW for repercussions of poor wildlife management by popular vote, and caving to opinion versus sound management policy. Your best defense is 'Jog with a dog', the lion most often will attack the dog first, allowing you to fire your small concealed sidearm scaring it away...if your lucky. Jogging is one of the most healthful, cost effective things we can do. The woodlands, trails, streams, and meadows are OUR NATURAL HABITAT TOO. Good letter Mr. Karr!

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • cookie65October 02, 2013 - 2:15 pm

    You can't reason with emotions. Emotions don't learn, emotions don't think. The logic of the treehuggers brings to mind a quote from Winston Churchill, "An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last."

    Reply | Report abusive comment
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