The hunting for “meat” loophole is finally closed.
Monday, December 18, 2017 — Government announces a full and total ban on the grizzly bear trophy hunt.
For over two decades, Pacific Wild and countless others have worked to stop the grizzly bear trophy hunt in British Columbia.
“This is a major victory for B.C. grizzly bears. Because you took the time to voice your support for a total and complete ban on the grizzly bear trophy hunt, the B.C. government listened and has now banned it effective immediately,” says Ian McAllister, Executive Director at Pacific Wild. “We can now enter 2018 knowing that the grizzly bear trophy hunt has been entered into our history books.”
This announcement comes four months after the NDP government announced the new ban on trophy hunting on August 14th, that still allowed bears in British Columbia to be hunted via a loophole that authorized hunters to claim them as food. It also comes after the 2017 fall hunt, claiming the lives of hundreds of bears. The combined pressure of hunting, habitat fragmentation, urbanization and other human-caused disturbance has already removed grizzly bears from considerable portions of their traditional habitat in British Columbia.
Natural Resources Minister Doug Donaldson, MLA for Stikine, said the recent month-long consultation process on the hunt, between October 3rd to November 2nd of this year, involved First Nations throughout the province. Around 4,200 written responses were received, including the 1,726 letters that were sent in via Pacific Wild’s website that asked the government to close the loophole that still allowed bears in British Columbia to be hunted via a loophole for hunters to claim grizzly bears as food.
“Through the consultation process with First Nations, stakeholder groups and the public, 78% of respondents recommended the hunt be stopped entirely,” states the B.C. government news release.
The majority of First Nations, B.C. residents and tourists have long made their opinions clear – they would rather see bear populations thrive, and have people shoot them with cameras rather than guns. The case against hunting grizzly bears has been strong and the movement has finally been won.