Let CPW manage Colorado’s wildlife | TheFencePost.com

Let CPW manage Colorado’s wildlife

Since when is it up to regular citizens in Colorado to decide issues that should be in the purview of Colorado Parks and Wildlife Commission?

Do we go to the citizenry to decide how many elk, moose, turkey or other game licenses to release each year? Do we go to regular people to determine how the state should deal with chronic wasting disease that has affected members of the deer family in the state?

Yes, the CPW does ask for public comment from time to time but that comment is limited to people who actually hunt or fish in the state as they are familiar with the CPW, its goals and rules.

So why is it that the citizenry, who are not familiar with wildlife management, are making decisions about how many wolves should be in Colorado and that lions should be a protected species in the state.

When the CPW makes decisions about animals such as wolves and lions they need to consider danger to the general public, other wildlife, livestock and, at times, federally protected animal species.

They are educated professionals who do this for a living and are paid to do this, so let’s let them do their jobs and stay out of their way.

As many of you who have been reading The Fence Post regularly and following activities of the CPW, wolves have been killing and injuring livestock in the state even before the introduction of more wolves into Colorado in accordance with Proposition 114.

As I have said before, I have no ill will toward wolves but if wolves want to be in Colorado they will come here on their own. In fact, they have migrated to the state from nearby Wyoming. These are the wolves that have been identified with the livestock depredation in the state. Even after the CPW tried to tell people there were already wolves in the state so that none had to be introduced here, people still voted to bring more wolves into Colorado.

Another serious issue to consider is how much money hunters and fishermen bring into the state because, and make no doubt about it, more wolves and protected lions will mean less big game to hunt and less hunters. According to the Colorado Wildlife Council, “In addition to contributing over $3.25 billion annually, hunting and fishing also help support more than 25,000 jobs across the state.”

We also need to look at the amount of money agriculture generates in the state because ranchers are not going to continue to raise livestock in Colorado if those animals are just being used to feed wolves and lions.

The agriculture industry, according to Colorado Agriculture 2021 and the Colorado Department of Agriculture, contributes $47 billion annually to the state, employs 195,000 people and accounts for $2 billion in exports every year. Cattle and calves represent about 66 percent of the annual contribution.

People in Colorado need to be aware that the seasonal skiing and snowboarding industries and manufacturing are not going to be able to make up the shortfall left when the hunting and livestock businesses are chased out of this state. And at a time when the population is rising steeply there will be fewer dollars available to take care of the growing population and services offered by state and local governments will be severely scaled back.


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