Lethal wildlife management occurs when entire populations of wild animals are targeted for reduction and systematically “controlled” by legal hunting, culling, poisoning, or other means to bring down population size. Despite claims that they are “science-based,” such practices are highly controversial.
Conflicts with wildlife can range from concerns about deer affecting forest biodiversity to sea lions eating salmon that people want for themselves.
Lethal control raises some of the most challenging ethical questions we can ask about our relationship with the natural world.
Is it "right" to round up and kill geese because they defecate on lawns? Should we kill mountain lions because they eat deer people want to hunt? Is it right to poison ground squirrels because they dig burrows in our parks?
There was a time when such questions would not even have been asked. But today it's time to not only ask the right questions, but find the right solutions.
News & Events
October 7, 2015
According to a new nationwide poll, by a two-to-one margin, U.S. voters said they oppose trophy hunting.
September 24, 2015
The Humane Society of the United States Awards $20,000 Grant to Local Group for Deer Fertility Control Research Project
The Humane Society of the United States awarded a grant of $20,000 to CliftonDeer.org in support of its non-lethal deer sterilization program.
September 18, 2015
Cougar Advocates File Appeal to Reverse Undemocratic, Arbitrary Quota Increase by Wildlife Commission
In response to dramatic increases in cougar hunting quotas, eight organizations and a wildlife research scientist have submitted an administrative appeal to Gov. Jay Inslee to return cougar hunting quotas to scientifically justifiable levels. The petitioners include The Humane Society of the United States, Center for Biological Diversity, Mountain Lion Foundation, Wolf Haven International, The Cougar Fund, The Lands Council, Predator Defense, Kettle Range Conservation Group and Gary Koehler, Ph.D., a former research scientist with the WA Dept. of Fish and Game.
September 17, 2015
An audit of the controversial Wildlife Services predator control program failed to provide any recommendations to address a series of documented problems regarding the program’s lack of transparency, overutilization of lethal methods and wasteful spending. Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Ore., former Rep. John Campbell, R-Calif., and Sen. (then-Rep.) Gary Peters, D-Mich., had questioned the program’s wildlife damage management activities and requested that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Office of Inspector General investigate.