Michigan Technological University professor emeritus and noted wolf researcher Rolf Peterson has joined a group of scientists who have signed a letter opposing the new Michigan law that will allow wolf hunting recently signed by Gov. Rick Snyder.While the letter focuses on the possibility of a wolf hunt, the bill also mandates fisheries to consider sound science, including a $1 million appropriation to fight against aquatic invasive species like Asian carp.Scientists, including Peterson, state in the letter, “The reasons advanced for wolf hunting have been protection of human safety and livestock. There is no question about the importance of human safety and livestock. However, sound science clearly indicates that wolves are not a threat to human safety and that wolf hunting is not a sensible means of protecting either human safety or livestock, especially given the small number of livestock that are actually killed in a typical year in Michigan. Moreover, the best-available science indicates that alternative methods are effective for protecting livestock.”
LANSING, MI — Gov. Rick Snyder on Thursday signed into law a bill that would put Michigan in a position to allow wolf hunting if the federal government ever dropped federal protection of the species.Specifically, the bill would empower the Natural Resources Commission to designate a hunting season on gray wolves, should they be delisted as an endangered species. The commission was empowered to do this under a previous law, but that law was struck down by the Michigan Court of Appeals.Sen. Tom Casperson, R-Escanaba, introduced the new version of the bill. He’s been behind previous bills to allow wolf hunts in Michigan as well.The new version passed the Senate 27-10 and the House 69-39. It includes a $1 million appropriation, meaning citizens could not overturn the law through a referendum. Read the legislation here.
Lansing — Michigan’s Republican-led Senate on Thursday fired the latest shot in the battle over wolf hunting, approving a bill that would allow a commission to designate wolves as a game species if they are ever removed from the federal endangered species list.The legislation echoes a 2014 wolf law struck down last month by the Michigan Court of Appeals, which ruled the petition-initiated measure violated the state constitution’s “title-object clause” by also requiring free hunting licenses for military veterans.“We’re removing that. We’re dealing with that issue with the courts,” said Sen. Tom Casperson, R-Escanaba.Casperson sponsored two earlier wolf hunting laws that voters overturned in 2014 after petition drives and campaigns funded primarily by the anti-hunting Humane Society of the United States. The new measure, like the law struck down last month, includes an appropriation making it immune from referendum.