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Coastal First Nations declare ban on trophy hunting in Central and North Coast

Date: 
September 12, 2012

(Klemtu, BC, September 12, 2012) First Nations on BC’s North and Central Coast have declared a ban on the trophy bear hunt in their traditional territories. "We will protect bears from cruel and unsustainable trophy hunts by any and all means,” said Kitasoo/Xaixais First Nation Chief Doug Neasloss.

The trophy bear hunt is an issue that has been brewing in First Nations communities for several years, said Neasloss. "Despite years of effort by the Coastal First Nations to find a resolution to this issue with the Province this senseless and brutal trophy hunt continues.”

It’s not unreasonable to expect that in the Great Bear Rainforest all bears would flourish, he said. “Unfortunately, trophy hunting continues to be permitted in the majority of Great Bear Rainforest, including its protected areas and conservancies.”

Jessie Housty, a councillor with the Heiltsuk Nation, said bears are often gunned down by trophy hunters near shorelines as they forage for food. “It’s not a part of our culture to kill an animal for sport and hang them on a wall. When we go hunting it’s for sustenance purposes not trophy hunting. ”

Only a total ban on trophy hunting will ensure that bear populations can support the tourism opportunities that add valuable income to our communities, said Housty. “Trophy hunting is a threat to the lucrative ecotourism industry that we are creating. Tourists often come back year after year to watch the same bears and their young grow.”

Because the Province is negligent in their responsibility to monitor the trophy hunt the Coastal First Nations will now assume responsibility for bear management on the Coast, Neasloss said. "We will now assume the authority to monitor and enforce a closure of this senseless trophy hunt.”

The Coastal First Nations are an alliance of First Nations that includes the Wuikinuxv Nation, Heiltsuk, Kitasoo/Xaixais, Nuxalk, Gitga’at, Haisla, Metlakatla, Old Massett, Skidegate, and Council of the Haida Nation working together to create a sustainable economy on British Columbia’s North and Central Coast and Haida Gwaii.

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For more information contact:

Chief Doug Neasloss, (604) 354-5989

 

Jessie Housty, (250) 957-8175

Councillor, Heiltsuk Nation

 

Comments

When I moved to B.C. from Ontario 10 years ago the Liberals had just lifted a moratorium on grizzly bear hunting. Insist that it be re-imposed by the NDP as a condition of our vote in the next election, as well as your stated ban on trophy bear hunting. When political parties need our support we can make gains. I am with you on the Enbridge pipe-line opposition 100%.
Without treaties your rights were never ceded or diminished!

Well done! I was delighted to read that you've taken a stand on trophy hunting. It's not sport, it's inhumane hunting and murder. It doesn't matter the revenue when it's wrong. I support your nation (s) 100% and wish you well in your struggle.

I'm so impressed and absolutely in support of this ban! Good for you for taking a stand for the voiceless when others won't.

Thank you for taking a stand against Trophy hunting. Your majestic bears bring me to the Great Bear Rainforest every year. It gives me great pleasure to know I have a chance to view the same bears, next year too, because they have not been hunted.
I am also 100% against the Northern Gateway pipeline..

Thank you f

Very good to hear! Thank you to the First Nations for taking responsibility. The trophy hunt is unacceptable and should be stopped by the Province, but we appreciate your effort.

When, oh when, are we as a people going to become adult about preserving our heretage must bears go the same way as Buffallo?
We are a pack of slow learner
HELP get this across-Everyone!

I read about your efforts to stop bear hunting (in the newspaper) and support you and believe in your efforts completely. Those people who think that it is cool to kill a bear (for any reason) are not right in their heads and are not in sync with nature. It would be one thing if hunters were eating them, but hunters are not killing them for food. Thank you for fighting the fight. People are so busy with their own lives and too busy sometimes to get involved but most would agree... LEAVE THE BEARS ALONE!

I am in New Zealand and supporting your efforts in spirit. I wish the Coastal First Nations much success in ending the trophy hunting on the central and north coast. You are right in making a stand on this significant issue. I am aware the BC government has been ignoring it for far too long. It is up to all of us, including First Nations, to protect that which we love... the land, the sea, the trees, the animals. Long live the Haida Gwaii Black Bear.

We respect and support the decisions of the First Nations re hunting and fishing. Thank you for protecting the land and the animals, all of which are gifts from the Creator. What a joy it is to see bears thriving in their natural environment. When we traveled up North for the first time it was amazing to see beautiful grizzlies sitting and eating the spring grasses alongside the Cassiar Highway.

Well done! I'm delighted to see that someone is standing against this cruel, inhumane and senseless "trophy" hunting. I'm so impressed. Thankyou very much! Lynne Cracknell.

Has there been any scientific data complied by multiple professionals ( who don't stand to gain from this ) in the field to justify one way or the other whether or not this hunting is sustainable?
Otherwise these comments are all based on emotion and frankly most people do not like hunting but that is no reason to terminate the hunt. Wildlife hunting is a human tradition and doesn't every First Nation Band partake?
BTW buffalo still roam wild in this province. People should really get out into the woods and see the beauty that is BC, it is awe-inspiring.

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