government is not about to stop the province’s annual grizzly-bear hunt,
despite criticism from environmentalists and dissent from one of its own
senior habitat biologist with the BC Ministry of Environment said hunting
as administered by the province “has the potential to drive grizzly bear
populations dangerously close to extinct. There is no ecological,
biological or social justification for continuing to hunt grizzly bears,” Dionys de Leeuw wrote in a private paper widely distributed to wildlife
officials within the ministry April.
Mr. De Leeuw argued that the system for issuing licenses for bear hunting “is
based on unconfirmed population estimates for grizzly bears” that
“substantially overestimate bear abundance.”
Mr. De Leeuw’s paper, copies of which were (confiscated) by ministry officials,
was leaked yesterday by the WCWC.
Canadian authorities list the grizzly as a vulnerable species and we
should not allow it to cross the line and become endangered. We think it
is quite close right now,” Anthony Marr said.
Mr. De Leeuw described as “an injustice in the extreme” the situation where the
interest of “an infinitesimally small” number of trophy hunters continue
to be protected by the government while those who oppose the activity are
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