LANSING (WWJ) – A campaign to protect Michigan’s wolf population has gained some star power.
Michigan-native “godfather of punk rock” Iggy Pop has written a letter to Gov. Rick Snyder asking him to stop the state’s first ever managed wolf hunt before it begins on Friday.
In the letter, dated Nov. 12, 2013, Pop writes: “As a Michigan native and someone who has cared about animals, both wild and domestic, for as long as I can remember, I was dismayed…that a bill you signed last May (S.B. 288/P.A. 21) gave Michigan’s Natural Resources Commission the authority to decide which animals can be hunted…which resulted in the first authorized wolf hunt since wolves underwent state protection in 1965.”
“To further compound the issue Mlive.com just unveiled several investigative reports that reveal the state used ‘half-truths’ and ‘falsehoods’ to support authorizing a hunting season on wolves in Michigan. The reports make clear that the decision to approve wolf hunting was based on fraudulent information and not sound science,” said Pop.
“I am asking all of my fans in Michigan to sign up and help gather signatures to reverse this decision and protect the wolf from future hunts,” Pop continues. “The senseless killing of these majestic animals for sport is a disappointment to the people of Michigan and a stain on its government.”
Pop called on Gov. Snyder to “do the right thing by staying the hunt and allowing the people’s voice to be heard” on the issue.
Jill Fritz, local director of the Humane Society of the United States, said there’s been response so far from the governor.
While state officials say the hunt is needed to rein in wolves that threaten livestock and humans, Fritz told WWJ Newsradio 950 it’s nothing more than a “trophy hunt.”
“Two of the premier wolf scientists in the world are at Michigan Tech and have stated repeatedly that a random public harvest of wolves will do nothing to effect wolf depredation on livestock or wolf problems with people or with dogs,” Fritz said.
Hunt opponents plan a candle vigil with Native American tribe leaders Thursday evening in Saginaw.
Meantime, Fritz says there are two proposals headed for the ballot next year that would overturn the wolf hunt law.
A total of 1,200 people licensed to participate in the hunting season, which runs through December — unless the maximum kill of 43 wolves is reached before then.
Michigan is the sixth state to authorize wolf hunting following the removal of federal protections in recent years.
An estimated 658 wolves roam Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.