I am writing as a concerned nonresident who is very
dismayed by reports of Alaska's wolf management policy. It
now appears to be the policy of the state to significantly
reduce the number of natural predators through aerial hunting
and increased taking quota. For what it's worth, I find such
historical record of harsh treatment of wolves in the United
States is a sad legacy. Many Americans are tired of their
natural resources being controlled, hijacked or otherwise
abused for the benefit of narrow interests -- in this case,
for those who prefer Alaska's forests be filled with artificially
high numbers of moose and elk. The experience gained from
the return of wolves to Yellowstone Park, for example, should
have taught us that apex predators like wolves have sustaining
effects on many other species, including plants and other
mammal species not directly consumed by wolves.
Americans are proud to know that in at least one state these
animals run free in significant numbers. Alaskans seem to
agree: these policies have been rejected by voting majorities
not once, but twice. Perhaps the current governor should consider
the virtues of democracy. Those counting on increased tourist
revenues from hunting should also be aware that these cruel
policies will do little to attract me or like-minded citizens
to spend tourist dollars in Alaska.
Nicastro / Ithaca, N.Y.