The BC Wildlife Federation fully supports the request by a group of eight retired senior provincial wildlife biologists for an independent review of the Cariboo-Chilcotin mule deer and moose management practices.
We are urging the Ministry of Environment to reconsider its recently implemented mule deer hunting regulations in the Cariboo-Chilcotin (Region 5). These combined with the continuing use of full Limited Entry Hunting regulations for moose, will significantly limit deer and moose harvest levels and appears inconsistent with stated wildlife policies and objectives. The new regulations impose substantial restrictions on residents for the harvesting of deer and moose in this area and according to BCWF are founded on inadequate research methods in the assessment of antlered and antlerless mule deer populations that are at or near an all time high in the region. The Ministry?s recent regulatory decision regarding wildlife management and conservation has been criticized by conservationists and wildlife biologists, many who anticipate numerous adverse impacts on the carrying capacity of the habitat and sustainability of wildlife in this region.
BC Wildlife President Mel Arnold states, ?Having personally witnessed the frustration of area cattlemen and ranchers with over abundant deer populations consuming thousands of dollars worth of crops, it makes one wonder just what criteria are being used to manage wildlife in the Cariboo-Chilcotin.?
BC Wildlife Federation strongly encourages the Ministry of Environment to utilize scientifically-sound research and transparent consultation with conservation experts and affected stakeholders, including hunters who are responsible stewards of the environment and whose primary interests remain the sustainability of wildlife and habitat in British Columbia, when making wildlife management decisions.