Study: Wolf hunt does not increase wolf acceptance

According to a study[1] at the University of Wisconsin, hunting wolves does not increase the acceptance for the carnivores.

The study group summarizes[2]

"Focus group discussions and an anonymous survey before and after a suite of changes in wolf policy and management in the state – including the removal of gray wolves from the federal endangered species list in 2012 and, soon thereafter, the approval of Wisconsin’s first legalized wolf-harvest season – revealed that majorities of respondents held negative attitudes toward wolves with no decrease in inclination to poach. 

The researchers conclude that lethal-control measures including government culling and regulated hunting may be ineffective for increasing tolerance in the short term. The findings could help inform future interventions designed to increase tolerance of wolves and other controversial species."

At the recent International Wolf Conference in Germany, Prof. Adrian Treves of the Carnivore Coexistence Lab, University of Wisconsin-Madison stated[3] additionally

"Intolerant people may be less angry at the agency if it kills wolves – but tolerance for wolves themselves did not improve after Montana’s wolf hunt"

and that scientific studies and thorough information have shown to be much more effective in raising acceptance.

Also, the Saxony Ministry of the Environment, when asked to allow wolf hunting to reduce poaching, publicly stated[4], this would be like "legalizing theft to stop illegal theft".

These results stand in gross contradiction to the proposal of Dr. Mari Pohja-Mykrä based on which the Finnish government allowed wolf hunts "to raise acceptance for wolves".


  1. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0006320714004959
  2. http://nelson.wisc.edu/news/story.php?story=2284
  3. http://www.nabu.de/wolfskonferenz
  4. http://www.sz-online.de/nachrichten/wolfskiller-schlugen-wieder-zu-3159555.html

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