Yesterday morning we ate breakfast with a group of wolf hunters.
I shan’t tell you who they are.
Michigan sports a new law: it’s game now to hunt wolves in the Upper Peninsula. Cost? $100 for residents. $500 for non-residents. Twelve hundred hunters have been licensed this season.
How many wolves shall be culled?
The Department of Natural Resources says 43 in three areas of our fair peninsula.
It’s the biggest controversy, as you might imagine.
Many of the local folks insist the wolves should be hunted and controlled.
Others decry this practice as barbaric.
Letters to the Editor abound in local newspapers.
Writers fuss, fight, fume!
One of my friends spotted a beautiful black wolf in her property. She almost fell to her knees in delight. She couldn’t breathe this sighting to anyone–except me. She didn’t want the wolf to be killed. She snarls at the thought of wolf hunters.
Another friend snarls at the thought of wolves. She’s seen photos of beagles, local pets, gnawed to pieces by wolves. She supports the hunt with a passion.
Each side continues to be vilified in the press, local bars and blogs. Each side calls each other extremists: one group is touted as evil killers; the other as dreamy idealists.
Here is an article written last year while Michigan debated whether to conduct the hunt.
I enjoyed the best breakfast with wolf hunters this morning. Oh, the lovely scrambled eggs and hash browns and whole wheat toast and delightful conversation!
The woods lie thick with deer and wolf hunters for two weeks in November, hiding in shacks and behind trees. While deer hunters roam the entire peninsula, wolf hunters must hunt in specified zones created because of larger numbers of identified wolf packs. Gun shots sound randomly through the day at this time of year. This morning’s snow aids the hunters in tracking their prey.
So far, six wolves have been shot. When the number reaches 43, the wolf hunt ends for this year.
Would I hunt a wolf? No.
Do I judge the hunters? No.
As so often happens, I stand between opinions, deeply loving wolves and yet recognizing that sometimes a herd must be controlled.
Have you an opinion about this controversial subject?