Friday, September 07, 2007

Puma unethically killed by Arizona Game and Fish

AZ Game and Fish Dept. used GPS collar to track and kill rare Yuma Puma

LA PAZ COUNTY AZ -- Southwest PEER has just obtained this photo of the male puma with GPS collar that was tracked and killed by the Arizona Game and Fish Dept. (AGFD) on BLM public lands just north of the Kofa National Wildlife Refuge earlier this summer.

Who's responsible? AGFD director Duane Shroufe, second from left holding decoy

Why was this puma killed? AGFD, a part of Gov. Napolitano's administration, says he ate some bighorn sheep.

What's a hungry lion to do? Pumas and bighorn have always co-existed within a healthy web-of-life.

Even in the Lower Colorado River region of the Sonoran Desert, where there are maybe five pumas around the huge Kofa NWR (know locally as the Yuma Puma due to the distinct low desert population) AGFD under Yuma region supervisor Larry Voyles prefers to kill pumas and try to force single-species bighorn 'game farm' management on the Kofa NWR.

To hell with the ecosystem, just grow more bighorn to translocate and shoot, says AGFD.

Bighorn hunt permits can sell for a lot of money, sometimes over $100,000.

The Bush/Cheney US Fish and Wildlife (dis)Service, which is responsible for the Kofa NWR has been happy to let AGFD run roughshod over ecosystem management.

AGFD wants to collar more pumas in and around the Kofa NWR, but conservation groups are saying 'no way'.

These GPS collars aren't being used by AGFD for research or good science, they are used as tracking devices so pumas can be easily found and killed. Under the current unethical management of AGFD and FWS, putting a collar on a Yuma Puma is a death sentence.

As a true conservation-minded traditional hunter, I am outraged at the immoral killing of this puma by AGFD, and you should be too.

Shame on Arizona Game and Fish on this issue.


AZW88 said...

Killing a Puma for being a Puma. Folks like Cheney were probably ticked that this creature could actually go out and HUNT for his prey, as opposed to stomping around brush waiting for someone to open a cage to set birds free.

They probably didn't even bother to get out of their helicopter to shoot the poor animal. Just tracked him with the GPS, moved in, hovered, shot, and left.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Hovatter, the spokesperson for Region IV AGFD in Yuma, AZ, stated the following quote taken from a recent cougar update. If lions are so hard to catch and collar why did they kill this lion after just about 3 months of research data?

"Given how hard it is to catch lions here, collaring of sheep has proven to be a good way to get data on lion predation (it’s worked for us on the Cabeza Prieta and in the Black Mountains) and other sources of mortality, i.e., we get a mortality signal and go to the site to determine cause of death. Barring rain, if the animal killed was an adult, we can make a predation determination weeks afterward . . .can still see drag marks, remains still cached, scat, tracks, etc.." {End Quote}

If the AGFD and KNWR staffs collar bighorn to track predation, then they can indiscriminately kill all the lions because it would be impossible to determine the "offending lion".....

Ron Kearns

Anonymous said...

I agree with you. No sportsmenship involved here...just outright murder of an animal. Radio collars should be banned, by law, for use like this.

Don Molde
Reno, Nevada

shrimplate said...

Disgusting. I hate these people.

C. Atrox said...

Thanks for posting an article and photo that more people should see. What has Arizona become?