They even killed a bald eagle.
The US Wildlife Services, a department inside the Department of Agriculture, killed an astonishing 200 animals every hour in 2021, according to a new report from the Guardian.
"It’s stomach-turning to see this barbaric federal program wiping out hundreds of thousands of native animals," Collette Adkins, carnivore conservation director at the Center for Biological Diversity, told the paper. "Killing carnivores like wolves and coyotes to supposedly benefit the livestock industry just leads to more conflicts and more killing. This is a truly vicious cycle, and we’ll continue to demand change from Wildlife Services."
The department says the mass culling is necessary to protect human life, agriculture and threatened species. The kicker? Among the 1.75 million animals killed, they shot a moose and and bald eagle. Which, by the way, is only recently recovering from being severely endangered. They also killed more than one million European Starling birds.
The Wildlife Service's death toll included, per the Guardian, "alligators, armadillos, doves, owls, otters, porcupines, snakes and turtles." It also seemingly does other things, with its "Operational Activities" page listing such activities as "Beaver Damage Management."
Seriously, who the heck is calling the US government for help with what the agency literally calls "beaver-related conflicts"?
Experts aren't pleased, and Adkins isn't the only one to complain. Animal and environmental historian Kenny Linden sharply criticized the policies on Twitter.
"These policies and strategies are similar to those I read and write about in socialist Mongolia," Linden said today.
Federal wildlife extermination policies are devastating. Sometimes animals need to be killed when people or environment are threatened. But not like this. These policies and strategies are similar to those I read and write about in socialist Mongolia.https://t.co/2mDFj9FF9y
— Kenny Linden (@Kenny_Linden) March 25, 2022
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