Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission to Vote on Contest Regulations

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife staff recently made recommendations to the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission to accept proposed language that would prohibit wildlife contests for any species that do not have a bag limit. The wildlife commissioners are now expected to vote on whether or not to move forward with staff recommendations, which directly undermine their own established seasons and bag limits at the Sept. 11 commission meeting.

Take Action Today! Washington members should email the commissioners listed below and urge them to vote NO on the proposed wildlife contest regulations.

Chair Larry Carpenter   larrycdfwcomm@yahoo.com

Donald McIssac  Donald.McIsaac@dfw.wa.gov

Jim Anderson       James.Anderson@dfw.wa.gov

Molly Linville       Molly.Linville@dfw.wa.gov

Robert Kehoe      Robert.Kehoe@dfw.wa.gov

Kim Thornburn   Kim.Thorburn@dfw.wa.gov

Barbara Baker     Barbara.Baker@dfw.wa.gov

David Graybill      David.Graybill@dfw.wa.gov

Bradley Smith       Bradley.Smith@dfw.wa.gov

Current Washington law allows for wildlife contests to legally take place in the state. Furthermore, these contests are heavily regulated as a permit is required to hold such an event. Based on the proposed language, if a family foundation traditionally held an annual contest for any species that has no bag limit and awarded cash to an individual that harvested just a single animal, it would be unlawful and not permitted by the department.

According to the USDA, coyotes account for 63 percent of all calves lost to predators in Washington. By proposing regulations that protect plentiful coyote populations, the WDFW is clearly demonstrating a lack of interest in safeguarding the livelihoods of Washington’s livestock producers. What’s more, even invasive species, such as nutria and feral pigs, would be protected.

“It is a major concern for Washington sportsmen that the WDFW staff would recommend wildlife contest regulations that are in direct opposition to the departments own season and bag limits,” said Jacob Hupp associate director of state services at the Sportsmen’s Alliance. “Seasons and bag limits were established by the department for a reason and as such sportsmen expect them to be strictly enforced rather than undermined in an effort to pander to animal-rights groups.”

About the Sportsmen’s Alliance: The Sportsmen’s Alliance protects and defends America’s wildlife conservation programs and the pursuits – hunting, fishing and trapping – that generate the money to pay for them. Sportsmen’s Alliance Foundation is responsible for public education, legal defense and research.  Its mission is accomplished through several distinct programs coordinated to provide the most complete defense capability possible. Stay connected to Sportsmen’s Alliance: OnlineFacebookTwitter and Instagram.