Wolf Killing is an Unfair and Destructive Subsidy

The killing of a wolf pup near Corral Creek outside Sun Valley, Idaho was done to protect John Peavy’s business, Flat Top Sheep Company. Once again this raises the question of why public wildlife should be killed to increase the profitability of private enterprises operating on our public lands.

It is especially disconcerting that Peavy did not implement minimum measures to protect his own sheep, instead, used a taxpayer-funded “hired gun,” i.e., USDA Wildlife Services to kill our wolves.

Grazing on public lands is a privilege, not a right. Why should Peavy sheep, and his business interests be allowed to jeopardize, harass and kill public wildlife? If I were to harass his sheep when I discovered them polluting our streams or otherwise damaging our public lands, I would be arrested.

It’s important to note that Peavy’s sheep (and all other livestock on our public lands) are creating ecological damage to our property. His sheep pollute the water. Many studies have documented that sheep grazing can change vegetation favoring some grazing tolerant species at the cost of others sensitive to grazing pressure. Sheep also promote the spread of weeds and alien plants like cheatgrass.

The presence of domestic sheep can transmit diseases to wild bighorn sheep. And this is the primary reason bighorn sheep are absence in many mountain ranges that once inhabited.

Domestic sheep also trample and compact soil, reducing water infiltration.

The forage going into Peavy’s…

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