Tags: bison | slaughter | yellowstone | culling

Bison Slaughter at Yellowstone: Culling of Hundreds Begins

Image: Bison Slaughter at Yellowstone: Culling of Hundreds Begins
American Bison (also known as Buffalo) join the morning commute on Highway 89 at Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming on June 1, 2011. (Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 17 Feb 2016 02:30 PM

The bison slaughter at Yellowstone began this week as officials work to reduce the herd at the national park.

Hunters have taken more than 300 bison so far, but that number falls short of the 600 to 900 animals that bison managers agreed to remove from the herd, the Bozeman Daily Chronicle reported.

Park officials are expected to trap between 300 and 600 bison and send them to slaughter or set them aside for research, the newspaper said.

An agreement to reduce the herd to a total of 3,000 animals was reached in 2000 as part of the settlement of a lawsuit in Montana filed against Yellowstone National Park over bison migrating across state lines into Montana. The herd includes roughly 5,000 bison, according to the most recent estimates.

Activists, including the group Buffalo Field Campaign, are planning to protest the controversial operation with rallies and a candlelight vigil, the Bozeman Daily Chronicle said.

"You never hear anyone talking about surplus elk or other wildlife species. We really want to see bison treated like elk and other wildlife," Dan Brister, executive director of the Buffalo Field Campaign, said, according to The Associated Press.

Some Montana ranchers consider the bison a threat because of competition for grazing and the risk of spreading the disease brucellosis, the wire agency said.

Journalists have been limited from accessing the roundup “for the safety of the public and staff,” New York Times op-ed contributor Christopher Ketcham said. Ketcham, a fellow at M.I.T.’s Knight Science Journalism Program, filed a lawsuit along with Buffalo Field Campaign for public access to the event.

“In response, the park service has agreed to allow us to observe the activities on four days of the service’s choosing. But this is wholly inadequate for a culling operation that takes place over several weeks,” said Ketcham, adding that herd management should be accomplished through seasonal hunting.

Twitter users expressed opposition to the news.






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The bison slaughter at Yellowstone began this week as officials work to reduce the herd at the national park.
bison, slaughter, yellowstone, culling
394
2016-30-17
Wednesday, 17 Feb 2016 02:30 PM
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