Our View: What are the alternatives?

It seems the BC government has never heard the aphorism “Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”

It seems the BC government has never heard the aphorism “Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”

If provincial leaders ever heard George Santayana’s famous words, they didn’t seem to have made much of an impact. Otherwise, we wouldn’t be discussing a provincial wolf cull again.

The idea of culling wolves was tried in the 1980s, to great public opposition. From 1982 to 1986, 798 wolves were killed, according to the Northern Lights Wildlife Wolf Centre.

Yet caribou populations didn’t rebound and here we are again, with the province once again suggesting that the best way to help those dwindling caribou herds is to get up in a helicopter and kill wolves. The helicopter, presumably, makes it easier to cover more ground and get more of those dastardly wolves in a single outing.

It’s not even supported by government experts. According to a report prepared by Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, a cull would need to kill at least 80 per cent of the wolf population and keep it up for more than five years.

Even then, the report said a cull is only a short-term solution, since wolf populations quickly recover and the long-term effects on the ecology could bring worse problems.

But whether or not a wolf cull would be effective isn’t really the best question to be asking.

Culls only offer a solution to the immediate problem. Killing wolves prevents them from eating caribou, but the real problem starts with human encroachment on their habitat.

That isn’t going to be solved by a few less, or even a lot less, wolves.

What we, as a society, need to be asking is what are the alternatives to killing these animals, rather than going to a cull as a first solution.

 

Just Posted

Castlegar council meetings will soon be online

Council chambers will be getting new microphones and cameras.

Slocan Valley to be ‘lit up’ with high-speed internet in 12 months

125 kilometres of fibre-optic cable to be laid from Nakusp to Playmor Junction

Vigil re-affirms belief in peace, acceptance in wake of New Zealand massacre

Nearly 100 show up for solemn event at Mir Centre for Peace

Police bust drug operation in Castlegar

Man charged, will go to court in August

Zoning mix-up nixes Shoreacres property sale

Man says the RDCK’s listings online don’t match his property’s official zoning

Edmonton judge rules Omar Khadr’s sentence has expired

Eight-year sentence imposed in 2010 would have ended last October had Khadr remained in custody

Father-son duo at B.C. Children’s Hospital helps new dads fight depression

The pair teamed up to introduce the only known research-based mindfulness workshop for new dads

Mexican restaurant in B.C. told to take down Mexican flag

General manager of Primo’s Mexican Grill in White Rock: ‘I’ve never heard of anything like this’

B.C. NDP moves to provide tax credits, tax cut for LNG Canada

Provincial sales tax break of $596 million repayable after construction

COLUMN: Smart phone too powerful a tool to yank from students’ hands

Rather than ban them from schools, let’s teach kids to harness their phone’s power and use it properly

B.C. river cleanup crew finds bag of discarded sex toys

Chilliwack volunteers stumble on unexpected find while removing 600 lbs of trash from riverway

Trudeau sells housing plan in visit to hot real estate market in B.C.

Trudeau said the budget contains measures to help first-time buyers

Norway opens probe into why cruise ship ventured into storm

The Viking Sky was headed for southern Norway when it had engine problems on Saturday afternoon

Fired B.C. farmland commission chair backs NDP rule changes

Richard Bullock agrees with Lana Popham, ALC records don’t

Most Read