2 Bills Propose Zero Tolerance for Bison
Original story at NYTimes.com• 3 mentions • 10 months ago
NYTimes.com 10 months ago
Two new bills introduced in the Montana legislature would usher in a zero-tolerance policy for wild bison, potentially opening the way for a return to the shoot-on-sight practices of years past.Under a proposed bill in the state Senate, Department of Livestock officials would have the leeway to exterminate all wild bison. And a bill in the state House of Representatives would allow landowners to kill any bison that sets foot on private property. The legislation pits farmers angered by the huge bison’s foraging against a consortium of wildlife advocates, Native Americans and hunters who had hoped that rules banning the bison were easing.“Why do you want to spread this creeping cancer, these wooly tanks, around the state of Montana? We’ve got zero tolerance left in our bones,” said John Brenden, a state senator from Scobey, Mont., who is chairman of the Senate Fish and Game Committee and authored that chamber’s bill.Over the last three decades, around 7,000 bison from Yellowstone National Park, descendants of the less than two dozen free-range bison in America known to have survived the great slaughter of the 1870s and ’80s, were killed for migrating from federal parkland into the states of Montana, Idaho and Wyoming.