Stop Hunters From Killing Off Yellowstone’s Mountain Lions

Target: Mark Anselmi, Wyoming Fish and Game Commissioner

Goal: Protect mountain lions living in the Greater Yellowstone region by enforcing stricter hunting restrictions.

Yellowstone’s mountain lions are in danger. A new study shows that while wolves have made a significant rebound in numbers in Yellowstone National Park since the 1990s, the same cannot be said for the mountain lions who also reside in the area. The report shows that as the wolves’ numbers have grown, increased competition for prey combined with pressure from hunters have made it difficult for the wild cats to survive.

Researchers have concluded that mountain lions are dying off in the Greater Yellowstone region, largely due to hunters who target them directly or who take down hundreds of elk and other herbivores that the cats rely on for food. In fact, hunting was shown to be the single leading cause of death for adult cats in the years since 2002, when the study began.

Wyoming Fish and Game must intervene to ensure that wolves and mountain lions can coexist side by side as they have for thousands of years. Sign this petition to urge officials to do more to protect mountain lions within the park and statewide.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Commissioner Anselmi,

Wyoming Fish and Game has made enormous strides to help ensure the successful reintroduction of wolves in the Greater Yellowstone region. While these measures have resulted in increasing numbers of wolf packs throughout the state, mountain lions have struggled as hunters continue to target them in large numbers, along with the prey animals they depend upon. The Jackson Elk Herd in particular has been shown to be an important source of food for these cats, and must be more carefully managed so that both wolves and mountain lions have enough to eat year-round.

For the good of all wildlife living in Yellowstone National Park and throughout Wyoming, we urge you to enforce stricter hunting limits on both elk and mountain lions. Please do not allow hunters to greedily take more than can support these predators or target this declining cat population. Mountain lions need our help, and we are counting on you to do what you can to help support their long-term survival.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: National Park Service

Do Not Allow Yellowstone Bison to be Slaughtered

Target: Ryan Zinke, United States Secretary of the Interior

Goal: Do not give in to demands from ranchers to kill herds of bison living in Yellowstone National Park.

Ranchers in Montana and Wyoming have pressured the federal government for years, urging them to kill off wild bison in nearby Yellowstone National Park due to overblown fears of the spread of certain diseases, including Brucellosis. Despite the fact that bison are a native species on the rebound after nearly becoming extinct over a century ago, this fear mongering has led Secretary Ryan Zinke, the head of the U.S. Department of the Interior, to call for the mass slaughter of these creatures.

Yellowstone National Park’s current superintendent, Dan Wenk, claims he is being forced to retire from his position because of his disagreements with Zinke, a Trump-appointed official with a long track record of opposing wildlife conservation. Wenk stands by research conducted by park biologists that suggests that the land can easily support the 4,000 estimated bison currently living there, and that the bison are not causing overgrazing, as Zinke and his staff have claimed.

The case for killing Yellowstone’s bison rests on bad science and a desire to put profits over conservation and the environment. Sign this petition to tell Zinke that the bison in Yellowstone have every right to remain and thrive on this protected land.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Secretary Zinke,

I’m writing to inform you that the National Park Service is not a livestock management program, and should not be treated as such. The 4,000 estimated bison that live in Yellowstone National Park are a part of the natural ecosystem, and should not be removed to satisfy local ranchers.

Your demands that Yellowstone officials, including superintendent Dan Wenk, cull at least 1,000 bison may satisfy the livestock industry, but it is bad for the environment and for the many tourists that visit the park with the hopes of seeing these majestic creatures. If these animals are killed, the only people who will benefit are a handful of ranchers whose operations extend to near the park’s boundaries. We urge you to look at the scientific research for yourself and to not call for this senseless killing of Yellowstone’s bison.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Daniel Mayer

Don’t Hunt Grizzly Bears

Target: Mark Anselmi, President of the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission

Goal: Reverse decision to allow hunting of grizzly bears.

The Wyoming Game and Fish Commission unanimously voted to reinstate the hunting of grizzly bears, allowing as many as 22 bears to be killed in the Yellowstone area. The state of Wyoming considers the grizzly bear population to be recovered enough to take the animals off the endangered species list, along with allowing trophy hunting of the precious bears. The Sierra Club issued a statement calling the vote a “misguided proposal” that will undoubtedly reverse 40 years of population restoration efforts.

Populations of grizzlies were restored enough in 2016 that the US Fish and Wildlife Service declared they were ready to be taken off the endangered list, but many conservation groups said the move was premature. In 2017, just a year later, 11% of the grizzlies in Yellowstone died. Sign the petition below to send the message that we can’t afford to lose any more grizzlies.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mr. Anselmi,

The state of Wyoming should be ashamed of how it has treated wildlife on a legislative level. Why is it that the first response to taking an animal off the endangered species is to allow trophy hunting of that same animal? There is no reason we should be opening up hunting season on a recently endangered species.

Grizzly populations are vital to keeping our ecosystem balanced, and without them, Wyoming and the United States wouldn’t have the same wildlife that makes these areas so uniquely important.We need to protect our animals, not hang them from our walls. We implore you to reverse the decision to reinstate hunting of grizzlies.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Matthias Breiter

Save One of Yellowstone’s Most Popular Animals from Hunters

Target: Scott Talbott, Director at Wyoming Game and Fish Department

Goal: Do not sanction the killing of Yellowstone grizzly bears.

Yellowstone National Park just became the latest example of what dangers loom when an animal is prematurely removed from the federal endangered species list. Despite a court’s earlier contention that states should not be given free reign over their grizzly bear populations, the United States Interior Department recently gave the three states collectively housing Yellowstone National Park permission to hunt and kill the park’s vulnerable grizzly population at will.

The announcement comes as the department rescinded federal Yellowstone grizzly protections that first began in 1975. As a result of these protections, Yellowstone’s grizzly population had increased by seven times its number before protections were put in place. Now, this progress may well be lost as the still-struggling grizzlies, who already only cover less than five percent of their natural habitats, now face hunting threats compounded by more habitat loss due to climate change.

Two states, Wyoming and Idaho, quickly seized upon this outrageous reversal by proposing grizzly bear hunts as soon as this fall. Under Wyoming’s proposed new guidelines, hunters could claim the lives of up to 24 grizzlies.

Sign this petition and demand the Wyoming Game and Fish Department veto a proposal that threatens the livelihood of some of its state’s most awe-inspiring living beings.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Mr. Talbott,

About 50,000 grizzly bears once spanned this country, many of them calling your state home. Relentless hunting of these animals plummeted their numbers to genocidal levels and drove them to the federal endangered species list.

Now, when the grizzly is finally recovering from its near-extinction, it has been stripped of the very shields that protected it and preserved it for the enjoyment of generations of Yellowstone National Park’s visitors.

Just as the gray wolf received special consideration and protection because of its value to the environment and to your state’s history, the state’s grizzly bear population deserves the same respect. Do not take advantage of the Interior Department’s decision and put these vulnerable animals in the crosshairs of hunters.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: US Fish and Wildlife Service

Don’t Let Hunters Slaughter Grizzly Bears

Target: Keith Culver, President of the Game and Fish Commission, Wyoming

Goal: Do not allow the hunting of grizzly bears in Wyoming following the Trump administration’s removal of their endangered species protections.

Wyoming is pushing for grizzly bear hunts to begin this fall after Yellowstone grizzly bears were stripped of their endangered species protections. Although the bears are still protected within Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks, they will be at risk of being killed when they roam outside those borders. As a senior attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity stated, “Wyoming’s reckless hunt ignores the fact that grizzly bears remain endangered in Yellowstone and across the West. It’s tragic that these imperiled animals will be shot and killed so trophy hunters can stick heads on their walls.”

Unlike Wyoming, Montana—which also contains land in these national parks—has recommended that grizzly hunting not be allowed. The bears are still at risk as a species because of isolation from other grizzly populations, the loss of vital food sources, and deaths caused by humans via hunting and other activities. Yellowstone’s bears in particular are so isolated that the government must truck bears into the area regularly. They also face the collapse of food sources in their ecosystem, like white bark pine and cutthroat trout. These threats will only increase with droughts and climate change. Currently, grizzly bears occupy under 4% of the land that they once did in the United States. Sign below to protect the iconic grizzly bear and demand that Wyoming put a stop to grizzly hunts.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear President Culver,

Allowing grizzly bear hunts in Wyoming is dangerous and irresponsible. Despite their removal from the endangered species list, Yellowstone grizzlies still face serious threats. Isolation, the loss of their food sources, and human-caused deaths from hunting are major risks that could threaten the species with extinction once again. To allow these animals to be hunted when they roam off the lands of the national parks is unacceptable.

Montana has made moves against grizzly hunting this year, for good reason. Apart from conservation alone, Yellowstone grizzlies are famous—they provide a major tourist attraction for your state. As Andrea Santarsiere of the Center for Biological Diversity says, “Yellowstone’s amazing grizzly bears are loved by people around the world and they deserve a real shot at survival. It’s horrific that Wyoming doesn’t see the intrinsic value that these bears bring to the state’s landscape.” I urge you to follow Montana’s lead in protecting these iconic and innocent animals. Please do not allow the hunting of grizzly bears.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: I-Ting Chiang