The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) has released a statement regarding this year’s proposal to cull 1,000 bison through hunting and trapping.
Matt Skoglund, director of the Northern Rockies Office at the NRDC, staunchly opposes the cull called for under the Interagency Bison Management Plan, which was recently announced. Here is his statement in full:
“It’s time to stop shipping bison to slaughter and give them access to year-round habitat in Montana. This proposal reinforces the need for the Governor to make a final decision and put into place the plan to expand wild bison habitat in Montana. This would be a huge step in the right direction, as it would allow bison to access important habitat outside the Park and improve the ability for bison to be managed like other wildlife in Montana.”
Montana Governor Steve Bullock has opined he would like to see bison roam year-round west of Yellowstone, but added the Yellowstone herd would have to be no more than 3,500. As it stands, there are an estimated 5,000 bison in the Yellowstone herd.
Currently, federal, state, and tribal partners under the IBMP are meeting in Montana to discuss this year’s proposal. Reportedly, most of the 1,000 bison targeted would be calves and females.