Following the delisting of grizzly bears in the Yellowstone region and subsequently approved hunt in Wyoming, more than 7,000 individuals entered for the first grizzly bear hunt in the state since the bears being placed on the Endangered Species list in the 1970’s.
In a report done by the Washington Post, it appears that one of those individuals, wildlife photographer Tom Mangelsen, drew the coveted tag and opportunity but plans to forego a hunt altogether. Instead, he’s choosing to “shoot” the bears with a camera, claiming “Bears do not belong to the hunters. They do not belong to the bear watchers. They belong to themselves and the landscape.”
The Post does a good job of covering multiple sides of the story, including a quote from Wyoming Game and Fish Department:
“We think we should all be grateful that over the last four decades hunters and anglers spent nearly $50 million to recover grizzly bears to ensure there is an opportunity for people to see and photograph grizzly bears in northwest Wyoming,” Renny MacKay, a spokesman for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, said in an email before the permit draw. “It is important to consider the fact that they did this during a time when those folks were using the resource by taking pictures of bears, not by hunting them.”
Hunters provide the majority share of conservation dollars in the United States and RMEF maintains that all wildlife should be managed according to the North American Wildlife Conservation Model.
To read the article in its entirety, go here.