Wednesday, 10 September 2008 08:41

Predators Take a Heavy Toll

Written by Hunters Alert
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Reprinted from Fur-Fish-Game magazine
Volume 105, Issue No. 9


The article Judd Cooney wrote for the June issue tells a politically painful truth exactly the way it is. Predation is, indeed, one of the largest problems that big-game animals face in the West, and state wildlife agencies keep their heads buried in the sand and do very little to actually control predator populations, only lots of studies and feel-good science. It is interesting that so many states have the same problem.

The Nevada mountain lion population is estimated at 2,000, which means lions eat 100,000 deer and sheep each year. As if we didn't have enough of a problem with our own predators, the influx of lions from California amounts to an invasion by an invisible, deer-eatin' army.

Nevada's deer population is near its lowest point in 40 years. In 2007, hunters only harvested 8,919. We have seen the largest herd of desert bighorn sheep in the world nearly extirpated by lions.

We do have a year-round lion season with two tags allowed for each hunter, but this sport hunting is not taking nearly enough lions to control their predation. Send every lion and coyote hunter you know to Nevada-before we completely run out of big game.

Scott Raine
Nevada Board of Wildlife Commissioners

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