TAKE ACTION TODAY! Tell the State of Montana Not to Reinstate Grizzly Bear Trophy Hunting!
Photo credit: Terry Tollefsbol/USFWS
April 8, 2020
Grizzly bears remain federally protected under the Endangered Species Act despite the Trump administration’s attempts to delist the species. However, the Trump administration is persistent and is still pushing to delist the grizzly bear. Now, Montana is debating whether it will allow trophy hunting if the species is delisted. On April 9, Governor Bullock’s Grizzly Bear Advisory Council (GBAC) is meeting electronically to discuss this possibility.
Grizzly bear sport hunting is not a viable way to manage the population, and may have the opposite effect by leading grizzly bears to quickly return to the Endangered Species list. Please take a moment to tell Governor Bullock’s GBAC that you oppose the sport hunting of grizzly bears by submitting your comments here. We encourage you to submit comments in your own words using the below talking points for guidance.
Population experts say that it will take 5,000 bears in a reconnected Northern Rockies (encompassing the Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem (NCDE) – Yellowstone – Selway Bitterroot – Cabinet-Yaak – Selkirks ecosystems) to sustain a grizzly bear population long term.
Grizzly bears in the NCDE are already struggling with the expanding human population, and opening up a hunting season will be an obstacle to establishing a healthy, connected population.
Grizzly bears have an incredibly slow reproductive rate, and it can take 10 years for a female grizzly bear to replace herself in the wild.
Pregnant bears would likely be shot during a fall hunting season, potentially leading to the removal of 4 or 5 bears rather than just one.
Seeing grizzly bears in the wild is a leading attraction for tourists from all over the world.
Rushing forward with a hunting season before a connected grizzly bear population is established could substantially reduce grizzly bear numbers, squandering all the time and money spent on grizzly bear recovery.
Sport hunting will not change bear behavior as bears are solitary animals and cannot “learn” anything from the demise of other grizzly bears in distant areas.
For long term persistence of grizzly bears management focus should be on establishing a large, metapopulation in a connected NCDE – Yellowstone – Selway Bitterroot – Cabinet-Yaak- Selkirk ecosystem.
“Management” should not necessarily mean “hunting.”