IFAW: Two new ways to help polar bears

March 20th, 2007 10:54 am by Kelly Garbato

Via the International Fund for Animal Welfare:

Two new ways to help polar bears

Numerous studies have shown the effects of warming temperatures on declining polar bear populations and ice habitats — from drowning and starvation to reports of cannibalism among bears. But did you know these amazing animals are also facing threats from American trophy hunters?

Here’s how you can help.

Sport hunters are not allowed to kill polar bears in the US. But thanks to a loophole in US law they can apply for a permit to kill a polar bear in Canada and bring their “trophy”— a polar bear’s head or hide — into the US.

At the same time, the US government is beginning to recognize the plight of the bears and their possible fate due to climate change. The US Fish and Wildlife Service is now calling for the public to submit comments on whether or not the polar bear should be listed as threatened on the endangered species list. If polar bears are listed, the species will be protected and “managed” for recovery, an excellent first step toward long term survival for the bears.

However, even if polar bears are listed on the endangered species list, it does not mean that the trophy hunting loophole will be closed. In fact, the US Fish and Wildlife Service has stated on its website that even if the species is listed as threatened, the Service would work with the Marine Mammal Commission, Congress, and all interested parties to consider a special rule allowing the continued import of trophies from healthy bear populations!

Your Help Is Needed Now to Save The Polar Bears — Here Is What You Can Do:

1. Contact your Representative and Senators and urge them to cosponsor and strongly support The Polar Bear Protection Act. Ask them to close the loophole that allows sport hunters to kill polar bears in Canada and bring their “trophies” back into the US.

2. Write to the Fish and Wildlife Service of the Interior Department (at Polar_Bear_Finding [at] fws.gov) before April 9th and urge them to list polar bears as a threatened species. Let them know these species deserve a break from climate change as well as trophy hunters.

Then please pass this alert on to everyone you know and urge them to save the polar bears before it’s too late.



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One Response to “IFAW: Two new ways to help polar bears”

  1. polar queen Says:

    No legislation has been introduced in the current Congress to address this situation. The Polar Bear Protection Act doesn’t exist.

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