The USDA’s “Wildlife Services” Killed Two Million Animals in Fiscal 2013
One would think the USDA’s “Wildlife Services” was involved with ah, oh, I don’t know, serving wildlife or their interests, right?
Nope. Not in this corporatocracy. This is what they’re doing with our tax dollars:
Wildlife Services, the highly secretive arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), has released new data showing that the agency killed more than 2 million native animals during the last fiscal year.
The new numbers reveal a 29 percent increase in the program’s killing, up almost a half-million animals since fiscal year 2012, despite an increase in public awareness.
Wildlife Services target animals deemed as pests by powerful special interests groups from the agribusiness, hunting and livestock sectors, according to Center for Biological Diversity.
“Wildlife Services has long been out of step with the values of Americans, and the new figures make clear it has no interest in changing,” said Amy Atwood, a senior attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity, which petitioned to reform the program last December. “These appalling new numbers show that Wildlife Services is simply thumbing its nose at the growing number of Americans demanding an end to business as usual at Wildlife Services.”
The covert killings—which includes aerial gunning, traps and exploding poison caps—has gone on for decades with little oversight and according the Center for Biological Diversity, the agency has killed more than 26 million native animals since 1996.
Here’s a list of the dead (2013):
- more than 320 gray wolves
- 75,326 coyotes
- 419 black bears
- 866 bobcats
- 528 river otters
- 3,706 foxes
- 12,186 black-tailed prairie dogs (as well as destroyed more than 30,000 dens)
- 3 golden eagles