Ontario government revisits unscientific and unethical wolf hunting plans

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Wolf and coyote hunting to be deregulated in Northern Ontario to placate moose hunters

As thousands of people are disappointed to learn that 2019’s last possible Public Wolf Howl will not go forward this evening in Algonquin Park, the Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) is revisiting a proposal to liberalize hunting of wolves and coyotes across 750,000km2 of northern Ontario.

A similar proposal was announced and subsequently abandoned by the previous provincial government in 2016 after hearing from over 10,000 Ontario residents concerned about its lack of ethical and scientific rationale to boost dwindling moose populations. Comments on the current proposal are open until September 26th, 2019.

The regulation changes will allow any small game hunter to kill as many eastern coyotes as they want between September 1st and June 15th – a period that incorporates the coyote pupping season – as well as up to two wolves/year between September 15th and March 31st in this area of the north. Hunters will no longer need to purchase special game seals or report to MNRF about how many wolves and coyotes they are killing each year.

MNRF’s own website “Factors that affect moose survival” explains how wolf hunting will do nothing or very little to boost moose numbers because hunting reduces wolf pack size, and smaller wolf packs do not kill significantly fewer moose than larger packs.

“Getting rid of reporting requirements makes it glaringly obvious that the Ministry isn’t even planning on studying whether such an unethical and unscientific regulation change will benefit moose. Hunters could wind up killing hundreds or even thousands of wolves and coyotes each year and we’d have no idea,” notes Hannah Barron, Director of Wildlife Conservation Campaigns for Earthroots.

“Eastern coyotes are not major predators of moose, they are generalists able to survive on rodents and other small mammals. Under the guise of moose conservation, this proposal was designed to appease those who persecute wolves and coyotes. The removal of bag limits, game seals, reporting requirements and closed seasons all encourage mass predator killing, which already happens in southern Ontario,” said Lesley Sampson, Executive Director of Coyote Watch Canada.

“I’m worried about what this mismanagement could mean for our wolves and coyotes, but also how it distracts from dealing with moose declines directly. The Ministry should phase out calf hunting and manage habitat at the ecosystem level to increase resiliency as the changing climate results in wildlife range shifts, increased parasite loads and altered vegetation and wildfire patterns,” notes Barron.


  1. It always amazes me how many people get excited about the killing of wildlife ie deer, moose, foxes, wolves, coyotes,etc. But the same people support the killing of humans ie the abortion of babies. You stop killing babies and I will vote for not killing coyotes and wolves

  2. If you keep killing off Wolves more and more Coyotes and hybrids will move in. Let Mother Nature balance her self. Cut back on tags and increase ministry officers to stop all the poaching. Do you no someone who poached?

    • I thought that the reason why coyotes moved in was because of an earlier wolf cull. No, I don’t need to have a degree to observe things like that. A memory is a pretty good tool. I also observe that humans feel entitled to what they want and are generally a pretty unfair species. Maybe we need a human cull even if only to keep them out of nature.

  3. Sooo…MNRF who has on staff scientists should be taking their advice from citizens who aren’t scientists and are basing their opinion on emotion – not on science? Sure! If I follow this logic I should ask my dentist to fix the brakes on my car!

  4. In a society where we are “supposedly” more intelligent than our primates, we prove otherwise by killing off our wildlife 😔💔 only to create an imbalance in our ecosystem. The term wildlife refers to animals living in nature; wild animals. The strong killing the weak; it is only nature playing it’s role; something called survival. True, I’m not a scientist but a mere human reaching out to you asking simply for you to show some humanity. These are beautiful creatures and God put them on this Earth the same way he did humans and I believe they have just as much right to live in this world as we do. Please stop the massacre of these majestic souls. 😔💔

  5. Leave the coyotes and wolves alone please. There are other options that can boost moose population and I believe by revisiting this issue, you will agree

  6. Please leave the wolves and coyote alone. No need for this. Mother nature takes care of her own. Why kill for the sake of killing, makes us no better than some of the States. They are here for a purpose,so don’t screw around with Mother nature. !!

  7. Thank you ON government for revisiting this issuing and listening to the facts. Please allow these majestic beings their rightful place in our natural environment.

  8. live in NE on and have witness many species cross my rear property without incident – they seem to know exactly where they are going, only looking straight ahead – so no to wolf killing especially to pacify moose hunters – this is not the answer – stop encroaching on the land with building, clear cutting and mining – this makes me sick because it is all in the name of money while you are destroying a beautiful northern land – perhaps our last hope for human and wildlife survival – I challenge all to think and care!

  9. There is no scientific basis for this deregulation. There should be restrictions on moose hunting to encourage an increase in population.

  10. Killing wolves and coyotes will NOT protect Moose. How about not hunting moose for a few years? Especially calves and cows? I’m always amazed whenever there is a perceived threat to wildlife the first thing the government wants to do is kill something else. Leave the wolves and coyotes alone! Nature has a way of fixing itself if man would just mind their own damn business and stay out of it.

  11. The moose problem has 2 distinct areas of concern. The first is poaching and getting a handle on those people. The second is encroachment by industry into moose territory. We need to be more careful where we build infrastructure to make sure we are not cutting off migratory paths and if we do have to go there then build overpasses for the wildlife.

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