Released on September 11, 2014
Starting next week, the Ministry of Environment will begin piloting the use of licensed hunters to reduce wolf populations in an area of the province where a high number of livestock kills have been attributed to wolves.
The wolf hunt will run from September 15, 2014 to March 31, 2015, and be restricted to wildlife management zone (WMZ) 49, which runs south along the forest from Carrot River to Greenwater Lake Provincial Park, then east along the forest to Hudson Bay.
“Saskatchewan Crop Insurance has reported an unusually high number of livestock predation claims in the Weekes area, and wolves are suspected as the cause in most cases,” Environment Minister Scott Moe said. “Although the ministry supports licensed trapping as the primary control method for managing wolf populations, we hope the wolf hunt pilot will help address and alleviate the problem in this specific area.”
There will be 100 licences available at Ministry of Environment offices in Nipawin, Hudson Bay and Greenwater Lake Provincial Park.
Licences will be available on a first come basis and must be picked up in person. One licence will be available per person until January 1, 2015; a second licence may be purchased until March 31, if unsold licences remain. Licences are restricted to Saskatchewan residents only.
“The Saskatchewan Trappers Association supports the decision to use a licensed wolf hunt to reduce wolves in this specific area,” Saskatchewan Trappers Association President Don Gordon said. “The season dates should provide the opportunity to hunt a wolf when the pelt is prime, and will still allow northern trappers to use their skills and knowledge to trap wolves within the forest.”
As a condition of their permit, licence holders will be provided with a reporting sheet and required to report hunting results to the Ministry of Environment. Over the coming months, the ministry will be working with Saskatchewan Crop Insurance Corporation, Saskatchewan Trappers Association, landowners and municipalities to evaluate the success of the pilot and to determine a path forward.
Hunters are reminded that for the purposes of this pilot, wolves are considered a big game species so that all regulations around weapon type, clothing requirements and baiting that pertain to big game apply for this hunt.
The Ministry of Environment provides science-based solutions, compliance and mitigation measures aimed at protecting the environment, safeguarding communities and helping to ensure a better quality of life for all Saskatchewan residents.
For more information, contact:
Saskatchewan Trappers Association