Two organizations dedicated to the rights of wildlife are asking for a judicial review of the B.C. government’s annual wolf cull.
The province started the controversial cull in January of 2015 for the South Peace and South Selkirk areas. They say it’s in an effort to recover the endangered mountain caribou populations, but Pacific Wild and Valhalla Wilderness Society find that claim dubious.
“To date, the province has neglected to protect and restore sufficient habitat for endangered caribou,” said Ian McAllister, executive director of Pacific Wild in a statement.
“We are asking the court to review whether, in the absence of sufficient, enforced habitat protection, culling wolves constitutes ‘proper wildlife management’.”
Pacific Wild claims around 500 wolves will be culled at a cost to taxpayers of $2.2 million. The organization thinks the government’s wolf cull efforts are based on protecting industry rather than endangered caribou populations.
“The B.C. government is pandering to industrial interests, endangering the few remaining mountain caribou, and sacrificing wolves in the process,” said Gabriel Wildgen, campaign manager at Humane Society International/Canada, another organization backing Pacific Wild in their lawsuit.
“We hope the court will rule in favour of B.C.’s wildlife and, in doing so, encourage the province to enact and enforce the habitat protections the caribou really need.”
Celebrities like Miley Cyrus and Pamela Anderson have spoken out against the wolf cull in the past. Cyrus and her brother Braison joined conservationists from Pacific Wild for a research excursion to Klemtu this past September.
Christy Clark responded to Cyrus’s outspoken opinion on the wolf cull, saying she should stick to twerking instead of government policy.
More than 211,000 people have signed a petition calling for the end of the provincial wolf cull.