Romania Bans Trophy Hunting of Brown Bears, Wolves, Lynx and Wildcats
With the largest populations for these species in all of Europe, Romania has shocked (in the very best of ways) the animal welfare and conservation communities by outlawing all trophy hunting of brown bears, wolves, and other carnivores. It’s especially remarkable given the stories of former Romanian communist president Nicolae Ceaușescu treating the country as a sort of royal hunting ground and slaughtering perhaps 400 bears during his 25-year reign.
In the United States, in contrast, our governments – federal and state – are, unfortunately, pushing in the opposite direction, seeking to liberalize hunting of grizzly bears and wolves at a time when we recognize that they have far greater economic and ecological value alive than dead.
Through our litigation and public policy strategy, we’ve forestalled the federal government’s delisting plans for wolves in four of six states (Wyoming, and also Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin), preventing the slaughter of more than 1,000 wolves in the last two years. Later this month, HSUS attorneys will argue before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to defend this animal protection victory. Now we’re asking the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) not to delist grizzly bears of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (GYE) and not to turn management of the animals over to the three states.
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Photo by John Swallow