Monday, 4 March 2013

A measure of success?

Our local MD has a bounty on wolves in our area.
$300 per dead wolf.
This bounty was initiated by ranchers who were suffering enormous losses due to the wolves; they were being “overrun” by wolves.
The MD heard their pleas and decided to initiate a bounty program.
According to the MD this bounty is working,
356 wolves have been handed in for bounty money.

However, what is a “measure of success”?
Is it:
  • The total number of dead wolves handed in?
  • Or, that no cattle are been eaten by wolves ?
  • Or is it the ecological devastation it causes?
  • How about the complacency it creates in ranchers?
  • Or the wasteful spending of (my) tax payers dollars?
  • The short sightedness of the program?
  • The lack of long term sustainable solutions?
  • Co-existance?
  • The environmental aftermath of such a program?
  • The expansive growth of ungulate populations and other predators?
  • How about the number of illegal and fraudulent claims?

Cost of this program?
One hundred and six thousand, eight hundred dollars,
(for those who like to see numbers:$106.800,-)
The program is still running.
Over a 12 year average [2000-2011], Stats from Alberta Wildlife Predator Compensation Program, the average number of cattle predated (by wolves) was 8.75 head of cattle in the High Prairie region, per year.

(These were the ONLY stats available to the general public, documenting predation numbers. I do accept they might not be accurate, let’s assume that these figures are not even close to correct, even if we triple the number, it just does not add up..)
I will let you figure out the Math yourself,
whether the payout is  proportional to the number of cattle being predated on.
That money, could have been  (better) spent on education and finding more effective and sustainable ways to help ranchers who do suffer the most from predation.
Oh, and despite this program,
calves are still being predated on..
how do you measure success?

It is a perversely human perception that animals in their native habitat are running wild.
~Robert Brault

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