August 10, 2012
Environmental and animal rights’ groups filed a lawsuit Aug. 8 to
try and stop Wisconsin’s new wolf-hunting season from starting in
The Midwest Environmental Advocates said the state DNR
and its regulating board set up the season without the restrictions
needed to stop what it called “deadly animal fighting.” Attorney Jodi
Habush Sinykin said there’s strong agreement among hunters, landowners,
ecologists, trackers, and humane societies that the rules for the season
are inadequate. She called it “state-sanctioned” animal fighting and a
violation of Wisconsin’s animal-cruelty laws.
The DNR is allowing
the use of hunting dogs for the wolf season – and opponents say that is
the impetus behind the lawsuit filed in Dane County Circuit court with
several humane and environmental groups as co-plaintiffs.
say there is irrefutable evidence that wolves will get into
confrontations with the hunting dogs, injuring and killing those dogs.
Spokesman Bill Cosh said Aug. 9 the DNR is disappointed in the lawsuit
and that the agency is in the process reviewing the complaint.
the season is proving to be extremely popular with those seeking
hunting licenses. Over 8,400 people have applied for just 2,000 permits –
and applications are being taken until the end of August.
Meyer of the Wisconsin Wildlife Federation, a former DNR secretary,
said he was not surprised the suit was filed. He said it’s interesting
that it focuses on the wolf hunt – and not the removal of the grey
wolves from the federal endangered species list. That was the reasoning
behind previous lawsuits regarding wolf hunts.