The BC government has prepared more than 50 proposed changes to provincial hunting and trapping regulations and you have an opportunity to respond to them. While The Fur-Bearers encourages all British Columbia residents to review and comment on as many proposed regulatory changes as they feel necessary, there are a few we believe to be of importance and relevance to our specific mandate:
Pursuit Only Seasons (2020-04-01)
We support this proposal (remove pursuit only from regulations).
Allowing hunters and their hounds to actively “pursue” cougars once the license holder has reached their bag limit is the current policy. This equates to wildlife harassment in our view, an activity that is or should be illegal in most jurisdictions. If hunters want to keep their dogs exercised there are many options available to them, such as lure coursing or other agility-based dog sports that don’t require native animals to be chased by a group of predators.
Close Wolverine Trapping Season in Kootenay Region (2020-04-07)
We support this proposal
According to the AHTE website a recent study found that, “high harvest is likely driving a population decline, and the current wolverine population size may be markedly lower than the landscape’s capacity.” In addition to the impacts of climate change on this species, which is categorized under special concern by COSEWIC, trapping in this region is demonstrably impacting healthy populations of wolverine. Closing trapping for wolverine in the Kootenay Region is a reasonable step.
Compulsory Inspection for Trapped Wolverine (2020-03-01)
We support this proposal but protest ongoing trapping (Add Region 3 to the list of regions subject to Compulsory Inspection for trapped wolverine.)
Compulsory Inspection for trapped wolverines will increase the available data to provincial wildlife authorities, which is currently lacking in all regions. We support this change. However, with a changing environment (through development, other human activity and climate change), the categorization of wolverine as a species of special concern in the area and most of the rest of their traditional range, and a study showing concerns about trapping impacting populations negatively, it is reasonable to close wolverine trapping seasons.
Black Bear Hunting in Coastal Bear Viewing Areas (2020-05-10)
We support this proposal (closure/reduction of bear hunting season in Kitasoo/Xai’xais Nation)
“The proposed closures are proposed to maintain effective bear viewing in important areas, reduce potential human-wildlife conflict and reduce overlap, spatially and temporally, with bear viewing operations.”
How to comment
We encourage all British Columbia residents to participate in the commenting period on these regulations, which ends on January 19, 2020.