I feel compelled to comment on new political signs I noticed recently. They tell you, “Trust your wildlife biologist,” and then encourage us to vote no on the upcoming bear baiting referendum.

I haven’t trusted our state wildlife biologists since one told me that a moose calf has no problem surviving its first winter without its mother. We’re talking about a 6-month-old animal that has never seen snow and does not yard up like a deer.

I agree with Don Loprieno’s letter on Sept. 10, “Conflict of interest for state wildlife officials.” I suspect that our wildlife biologists are not free to give their real opinion about the bear population and baiting, but instead are told what their public opinion will be. If they value their job, they will say what they are told to say. And it is a conflict of interest.

I don’t believe we have too many bears or that they cause an unusual number of problems. The media make any incident involving a bear into big news. A bear ripping down a bird feeder is not worthy of TV coverage. Get rid of the food source, and the bear will leave. I’ve lived in two areas of the state with large bear populations, had livestock both places, and have never had a problem.

It is wrong to coax an animal to a site with sugary junk food and then shoot it. We don’t allow our deer or moose hunters to bait. Bear cubs stay with their mother for about 18 months. They may only be 7 months old when their mother is killed, and they will starve to death without her.

I am voting to outlaw cruel and unfair bear hunting. I hope others will use common sense, fair play and humanity when they vote.

Donna J. Runnels


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