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Letter to Gov. McGreevey about New Jersey Bears


Wildlife Watch Inc.
PO BOX 562, NEW PALTZ, NY 12561
Voice:(845) 256-1400; Fax:(845) 845-622-7999
e-mail: wildwatch@verizon.net

November 16, 32003

Governor Jim McGreevey
PO Box 001
Trenton, New Jersey 08625-0001

Dear Governor Jim McGreevy:

Native Americans have long considered bears to be the spirits of the forest -- and during the early years of their stewardship our environment was diverse and healthy. Environmentalists also consider bears to be an integral part of a healthy ecosystem. Yet on December 8th, unless you stop them, 6,000 armed men, women, and children will be invading New Jersey to slaughter 500 bears -- risking the loss forever of these glorious creatures. In truth, regulated hunting during the years 1958 to 1970 has decimated the bear population. According to black bear experts, the bears are still recovering. Don't let them go the way of the short-tailed albatross, the whooping crane, the passenger pigeon and other species that were driven to extinction by self-serving human meddling.

Bears don't threaten humans, but in fact they will run up trees to escape danger. Actually, so-called "nuisance complaints" have risen in states where black bears are hunted, proving that hunting does not allay human fears or help the situation.

As perhaps the most developed state in the nation, New Jersey has been mocked as being a desert of giant billboards, factories and strip malls. Despite this, bears have managed to find a way to live in peace with us. Please do not let the selfish desire for trophies, misplaced fear, and hubris prove New Jersey's critics to be correct.

Remember the true motives of the Division of Fish and game and the Fish and Game Council, which is preserving their power and funds through hunting licenses and taxes on ammunition to maintain their agencies.

Humankind has a history of wrecking delicate ecosystems. Please preserve these last few wildlife treasures of the East Coast by calling a halt to the killing.

Constance Young

Public Affairs Director,
Wildlife Watch, Inc.

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