The Department of the Interior recently announced that it would be rolling back a series of protections for bears, wolves, coyotes, and caribou on Alaska’s national parks and preserves. These protections, passed in 2015 after numerous hearings and over 70,000 public comments, banned inhumane hunting practices on Alaska’s parks and preserves. Such hunting practices included killing bears, wolves, and coyotes in dens, baiting bears, killing swimming caribou, and using dogs to hunt bears.
In seeming light of these announced rollbacks, the DOI has opened the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge to previously banned hunting practices such as brown bear baiting, killing wolves, coyotes, and lynx within the Skilak Wildlife Recreation Area, discharging firearms along the Kenai and Russian Rivers, and using dogs to hunt big game (except black bear) in the Kenai Refuge.
Public comments on these rollbacks in the Kenai Refuge are open until August 10. Check out the full regulation here, and submit your comment. Let’s keep Alaska’s wildlife refuges as just that.. refuges.