Thursday, August 25, 2016

More data, maps reveal Wisconsin bear hunting cruelty

Of the 23 bear hounds killed in Wisconsin this year when their owners unleashed them into conflicts with wolves, ten of the deceased dogs were Walker hounds like this one,
one was a Walker mix and three additional Walkers were injured by wolves, according to data and maps posted online by the Wisconsin DNR.

Note also that hound owners in Wisconsin are eligible for a $2,500 per killed hound - - details about the payments and other licensed hunting/training methods which have cruelty written all over them, here - - even if the hound died in a known wolf activity area which the DNR posts for all to see.

Take a look at just one in a long list of maps the DNR has posted this year which show the location wolf-hound encounters which have led to eight dead hounds during bear hunt training this month in Bayfield County alone...

8/13/2016Bayfield2 dogs killed (Black and tan, female, 2.5 years; Bluetick, female, 2.5 years)Bayfield depredation siteBayfield depredation location map [PDF]
and decide whether hounders are consulting the DNR maps and if they are putting their dogs' survival first.

The bear hunting season begins September 7th and ends October 11th, preceded by the training/running periods.

Wisconsin ranks at or near the top in the number of bears killed in what the DNR and bear hunting lobbies call "a quality" experience - - though hardly for bears, wolves, dogs, other  Wisconsin wildlife which is all owed by the public, by the way, and people's peace of mind in the north woods.

One organization, Wolves of Wisconsin Douglas County, is pursuing a legislative ban on bear hounding. Details,here:

The sport of bear hounding  is not part of “fair chase” used in ethical hunting practices.  
That’s why; Wolves of Douglas County Wisconsin is beginning a campaign to legislatively end bear hounding in the north woods of Wisconsin.  
When this sport of pursing bear with dogs began in 1963 there were no wolves present in Wisconsin. Conflicts arise between bear hunters and wolves because bear hunters run dogs through rendezvous sites where wolves keep pups. Bear hunters are reimbursed $2,500.00 per dead dog killed by wolves forced to defend their pups from free ranging dogs in pursuit of bear. 
Consult this 2015 post on The Political Environment for additional details about the situation in Wisconsin, including:
Various DNR webpages reference the "thrill" of bear hunting or its "quality experience," and the agency's large carnivore expert told the Wisconsin Bear Hunter's Association in a pre-hunting season missive that the state provides a "high quality bear hunting experience." 
For an adult, the license costs $49. 
Speaking of bear hunting and dogs, another DNR webpage discloses that in the last few weeks, nine dogs training against bears have been killed by wolves; under a program unique to Wisconsin, the DNR will reimburse each hunter up to $2,500 per wolf-depredated dog. 
Payments may go to repeat claimants, and scofflaws; by January, 2014, the amount paid out for bear hunting dogs lost to wolves was nearing $400,000, a comprehensive report had shown.

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