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Judge stops night coyote hunting in 5 North Carolina counties

  • Blog Post by: Dennis Anderson
  • November 26, 2012 - 12:00 PM

Night hunting for wildlife is in the news in places other than Wisconsin, where the Department of Natural Resources and the Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission (GLIFWC) are tussling over after-hours hunting of wolves and deer.

According to Wisconsin DNR rules, wolf hunting is allowed in Wisconsin beginning today with the aid of a light "at the point of kill.''

Disagreeing with that allowance, GLIFWC last week voted to allow Chippewa tribes to hunt deer at night using a light "at the point of kill'' in the northern part of Wisconsin.

The DNR argues the Chippewa lack authority to hunt deer at night, arguing that its — the DNR's — night wolf ruling is in line with allowances it grants night coyote hunters in Wisconsin.

In North Carolina, meanwhile, coyote hunting at night with an artificial light is suspended in five counties pending the outcome of a lawsuit filed by environmental groups, including the Southern Environmental Law Center, whose suit was filed on behalf of the Red Wolf Coalition, Defenders of Wildlife and the Animal Welfare Institute, according to the Outdoor Wire.

"While we accept the judge's decision, it is important to note that this is a decision on a preliminary injunction only. It is not a decision on the lawsuit," said Wildlife Commission Executive Director Gordon Myers. "We remain confident of our position and its merits."

According to the Outdoor Wire report:

The Wildlife Commission passed temporary rules in July allowing the taking of coyotes and feral swine by hunting on private lands at night with a light. Night hunting is one means of controlling localized populations of coyotes and feral swine, both of which are non-native to North Carolina, destructive to the landscape, and potential disease carriers. Coyotes also pose predatory threats to pets and livestock.

The preliminary injunction issued  by the Superior Court only applies to hunting coyotes at night in Washington, Beaufort, Tyrrell, Hyde and Dare counties The order does not prevent taking of wildlife, including coyotes and red wolves, while in the act of depredation. It does not affect hunting feral swine at night with the aid of a light.

The preliminary injunction will remain in effect pending the final ruling by the Superior Court on this issue.


 

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