Target: Gina McCarthy, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator
Goal: Allow coyotes found in cities to be relocated instead of killed.
Coyotes have lately become a problem for many California residents, as the drought has forced them to wander farther in search of water. This has unfortunately led to some conflict with humans and many coyotes being killed out of fear.
Trapping and releasing coyotes, a more humane alternative to shooting them, is actually illegal in California though killing them is not. This leads to many residents shooting the animals instead of relocating them. This is in part because coyotes are a potential vector for rabies, though they very rarely have the disease. This small point of the law leads to many coyotes being killed annually.
The issue is further complicated by the fact that wolves are often mistaken for coyotes and shot. Wolves, in contrast to coyotes, are threatened and populations are only very recently beginning to recover. However, these few wolves are sometimes killed when mistaken for coyotes due to their similar appearances. Allowing trapping and release would save at least a few wolves that wander into and near residential areas along with the coyotes, protecting the fragile population.
Please sign the petition below to rescind the ban on coyote and wolf relocation in order to save these majestic creatures from being shot.
Dear Administrator McCarthy,
Coyotes in California and along the West Coast pose problems for residents, who are afraid of the animals or for the safety of their pets. The coyotes migrate more in search of water due to the persistent droughts, and often end up in residential districts, posing risks to both humans and animals.
Currently it is illegal to trap and relocate coyotes, due in part to the fact that coyotes are a species potentially at risk for rabies, though they rarely contract the disease. Killing coyotes, however, is perfectly legal in California. This leads to many coyotes being shot on sight because the alternative of trapping them and releasing them away from residential regions is illegal.
The threatened wolf population is also at risk from this law because wolves are often mistaken for coyotes and shot by both hunters and residents. Trapping and releasing could protect the recovering wolf population as well as prevent the deaths of so many wandering coyotes.
I am writing to you to encourage changing this law which results in so many needless deaths and puts the threatened wolf population at an elevated risk. Give California residents the more humane alternative of releasing the animals legally.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Christopher Bruno