Protect Wildlife in Wilderness Areas - URGENT

8.10.2006

*OK, not this wolf exactly but hundreds of others who are just as cute.

The U.S. Forest Service wants to use an array of poisons, traps and shooting -- including aerial gunning to wipe out wolves and other carnivores in designated wilderness areas.

Under the proposal, federal agents could chase down and kill bears or other carnivores using planes, helicopters, and all-terrain vehicles -- invading areas once safe for these creatures with loud, intrusive machines. The proposal also allows for the use of the controversial pesticide sodium cyanide. Baited devices could be used to shoot the highly toxic gas into a wolf's mouth, causing a horrible death.

Wildlife Services, the agency that would be put in charge, has a grim track record. In 2004 alone, their agents killed more than 37,000 animals -- coyotes, wolves, foxes, and bobcats -- from the air.

Wilderness areas were meant to be wild and free. According to the 1964 Wilderness Act, these special places should be preserved in their natural conditions with little or no human influence. But the Forest Service's plan could fundamentally alter these largely untouched areas, allowing low-flying airplanes, trucks and all-terrain vehicles to hunt down populations of wolves, bears and other carnivores.

Help force the U.S. Forest Service to withdraw this ill-advised proposal by encouraging your friends to submit their personalized comments before September 6!

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