U.S Wildlife Service sued over plans to kill lions and bears.

A lawsuit has been filed in order to stop the U.S Fish and Wildlife Service from killing a number of wild animals.

Three separate conservation organisations have acted against the government body over the killer plan.

The U.S Fish and Wildlife Service have planned to kill a number of mountain lions and black bears in the Piceance Basin and Upper Arkansas River in Colorado.

The plan was intended to boost deer populations in the area that have been depleted due to oil and gas drilling.

But conservationists have argued that as well as the plan being totally humane, it has not been thought through.

From an ecological point of view, to kill large numbers of animal in any eco-system can drastically damage the environment. The delicate nature of the food chain and living environments mean that animals numbers are naturally carefully balanced. Human intervention to change this could cause catastrophic problems for the wildlife in the whole area.

The decision was met with public opposition when it was announced.

The U.S. District Court of Colorado has noted the lawsuit, filed by the Center for Biological Diversity, The Humane Society of the United States and WildEarth Guardians.

Andrea Santarsiere, a senior attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity has said:

“It’s appalling that the Fish and Wildlife Service bankrolled this killing without bothering to truly examine the environmental risks,”

“Reckless oil and gas drilling has destroyed mule deer habitat, and outdated predator-control techniques can’t fix that. Slaughtering bears and mountain lions will only further damage these ecosystems.”

The plan outlines the killing of 75 black bears and 45 cougars over a three year period, and if it goes ahead, will cost $645,000. A large percent of the fee will be payed for with taxpayers dollars.

Stuart Wilcox, staff attorney for WildEarth Guardians noted:

“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service authorizing the use of millions of public dollars meant to promote wildlife restoration to kill Colorado’s bears and mountain lions is outrageous,”

“Scapegoating species key to ensuring Colorado’s ecosystems remain resilient—because the state wants to ignore the true impacts of the filthy fossil fuel industry—adds insult to injury.”

It may seem ironic that an organisation that exists to protect wildlife has admitted plans to kill a number of animals. While the company insists that it is necessary for the area, opposers say that the decision has not bee though through properly.

Anna Frostic, managing attorney for wildlife and animal research at The Humane Society said:

“The Fish and Wildlife Service has an obligation under federal law to evaluate the environmental implications of its actions, relying on the best available science, and to allow the public to review that analysis,”

“The agency has failed to comply with these statutory duties, ignoring potentially devastating impacts on black bears and mountain lions.”

H/T Eco Watch