A complaint has been submitted to the British Columbia Ministry of Land, Water and Resource Stewardship over its monitoring of the province’s 2021-2022 wolf cull.
The Fur-Bearers, a non-partisan wildlife charity founded in 1953, submitted a freedom of information request for 2021-2022 reporting documentation for the Itcha-Ilgachuz and Tweedsmuir-Entiako areas of the wolf cull, including photographs of wolf kills that contractors are required to submit to the provincial wildlife veterinarian. The Ministry did not provide any photographs, stating they are finalizing standards of practice for the removal of wolves.
Under a 2021 provincial procedure established for the wolf cull, the province has a responsibility to ensure methods of wolf reduction are humane and standards are being followed. The omission of photographs in response to this FOI request raises questions about how the wolf cull is being monitored.
“The province has a responsibility to monitor the activities of contractors hired to kill wolves and ensure they are complying with guidelines and standards,” says Aaron Hofman, Director of Policy and Advocacy for The Fur-Bearers. “But if contractors aren’t sending the provincial wildlife veterinarian photographs of their wolf kills, how is the province able to evaluate what is happening to wolves in BC’s remote wilderness?”
The Fur-Bearers has submitted a complaint to the Ministry, calling for an immediate moratorium for the wolf cull to take effect prior to the 2022-2023 program. The organization is also calling for an audit regarding the Ministry’s monitoring of the 2021-2022 wolf cull and the contractors’ adherence to guidelines and standards.
“We recently learned that wolf pups were being collared, tracked, and killed by contractors in the winter of 2021-2022,” says Hofman. “What else don’t we know about the wolf cull? Without effective oversight and monitoring, there’s a possibility that animal cruelty might be occurring under a taxpayer-funded program. It’s time to put the brakes on the wolf cull and conduct an evaluation into its operations.”
The Fur-Bearers encourages residents to visit TheFurBearers.com/BCWolfCull to learn more and contact their MLA to take action.