FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – North Peace MLA Dan Davies took to social media Thursday to encourage residents to provide feedback to members of the provincial government regarding the province’s proposed hunting regulations for the Peace region.
The proposed regulations would see the closure of all licensed caribou hunts in the Peace and put moose hunts in the region on the limited entry hunting draw system, intending to decrease the number of moose taken by licensed hunters by 50 percent while also decreasing the number of licensed moose hunters by the same percentage.
Davies penned a letter to the Minister of Forests, Katrine Conroy, calling on the government for more transparency regarding its decision-making process.
The province says the proposed regulations aim to address the ability of Treaty 8 First Nations to continue their way of life. It also looks to address impacts from industrial development highlighted in the Supreme Court of B.C.’s ruling in favour of Blueberry River First Nation last year.
“The Treaty infringement requires a reset. Looking ahead, rebalancing and aligning objectives, investments, and monitoring systems to a new standard will require a new way of working together,” the province said.
The province says the proposed hunting regulations are an interim measure and only one part of a broader package of actions specific to improving wildlife stewardship, upholding Treaty rights, habitat conservation, and the future of resource management.
“Sustainable Caribou and Moose hunting in the Peace-Liard currently supports 5,957 resident hunters and their families, who spend a combined 56,000 days enjoying Supernatural B.C.,” the federation said.
The federation added that British Columbians also put more than $18.4 million in hunting-related expenditures.
According to the federation, some expected impacts of the deal include:
“Ordinary British Columbians who hunt for food are being traded-off in favour of resource extraction,” said Zeman.
“The BCWF is concerned that this is the tip of the iceberg and that these kinds of deals are coming to parks, campsites, streams and lakes in British Columbia. After two years of this pandemic, the province should be encouraging British Columbians to get outside and enjoy nature; instead, it’s telling them they’re not welcome in the Peace, and they should stay at home.”
The federation added that they fully support the rights of First Nations to hunt and fish in their traditional territories for food, social and ceremonial purposes and that commitment to conservation and habitat restoration is shared between First Nations and non-First Nations.
Residents have until March 23rd to provide their feedback.
For more information on how to provide feedback, click here.
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