Every year, millions of people from all around the world travel to Montana to see its majestic wildlife. This could soon be over, as Montana’s lawmakers have passed nine bills that are likely to destroy the state’s wild species.
- SB 314 establishes that wolf trapping and hunting seasons aim to reduce the state’s wolf population to 15 breeding pairs.
Individuals are currently allowed to kill five wolves, but the new bill allows them to kill an unlimited number.
Moreover, it allows the hunting of wolves on private lands during the night — with artificial light or night vision scopes. Finally, SB 314 also allows trophy hunters to use smelly baits that would lure wolves and make them easier to kill.
- SB 267 allows reimbursement for wolf trapping and hunting.
- HB 224 allows the use of snares that trap wolves and kill them by slowly strangling them. More often than not, other animals and pets get caught in these snares (including federally protected eagles). Moreover, they can kill thousands of animals a day.
- HB 225 allows the wolf trapping season to be extended by 30 days. This will raise the number of killed wolves and other animals that might get caught, such as grizzly bears and pets.
- SB 98 allows killing grizzly bears if they are seen threatening livestock. This is a rather subjective extension of the current law, which makes killing grizzly bears illegal unless the bear is found in the act of killing livestock.
- SB 337 prohibits Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks from relocating grizzly bears that are causing trouble outside the federal recovery zone.
- SJ 18 asks the state to remove federal protections for grizzly bears under the Endangered Species Act. Grizzly bears are recovering, but their numbers are far from ideal.
- HB 468 allows hunters to use packs of hounds with GPS collars to chase and corner black bears for an easier kill.
- HB 367 adds trapping and the use of “customary and current means and methods” to Montana’s constitution to codify cruelty.
These bills are an outright attack on nature, and we can’t let the lawmakers ignore science.
If you live in Montana, you can contact the Governor and lawmakers and let them know that you don’t support these bills that will destroy Montana’s wildlife, nature, tourism, and economy.