Controversial wolf hunt over, Sweden now wants to import wolves

Purpose of import is not due to excessive wolf mortality during the hunt. It is lack of genetic diversity-

Sweden wants to import 20 genetically diverse wolves over the next five years.  Although the Swedish Parliament wants to limit the wolf population to about 200 wolves, and so had their first wolf hunt this year, apparently the population is based on too few founding wolves and suffers from inbreeding.

The ill effects of inbreeding do not go away when a population based on just a few animals grows in size. Therefore, the importation of new wolves and the hunt are not related. Regardless of one’s opinion about the wolf hunt, bringing in unrelated wolves will benefit the health of the 200 or so Swedish wolves.

The official number of wolves killed in the recent wolf hunt was 27.

Sweden to import wolves
. UPI.com

There is a lesson here for all those people who prefer a “natural” (unassisted recovery) of any animal — unless there is a large in-migration, the renewed population is not likely to be genetically healthy even if it becomes fairly large.

Fur flies over first Swedish wolf hunt

Wolves fall quickly in first Swedish wolf hunt in a half century-

Hunters kill 20 wolves in first Swedish hunt in 45 years. AFP.

Twenty out of the 27 wolf quota were killed the first day. There were 182 – 217 wolves. The Swedish Parliament limited the population to 210.

Sweden allows first wolf hunt in 45 years

Killing wolves will build public support says Swedish environmental protection agency-

Sweden allows first wolf hunt in 45 years. Times of the Internet
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Peter Kiermeir called this hunt to our attention. He wrote:  “More or less unnoticed by the rest of the world another controversial wolf hunt is planned for 2010 in Sweden. After nearly half a century of full protection Sweden is going to hunt 20-40 wolves (out of a population of around 200, recovered from “almost zero” 30 years ago, to put the numbers into the right perspective). Sweden intends to limit overall wolf numbers to max 210 despite a statement of scientists that at least 500 would be needed for a healthy population. Officials say that this hunt is intended to raise the “acceptance of wolves in the public” and to “cut down the many poaching incidents”. Its remains questionable if it is wise to surrender to criminality (always assuming that this the true reason behind), but they pretend that a similar hunting scheme for bears cut poaching of bears to nearly zero. Another question not answered is how the handful of wolves that in a mathematical manipulation are “shared” with Norway count here. Latest news from Finland is today, that the Swedes intend to import wolves from Finland at a price of about 48000 Euros each, because they need to boost the population a little bit. In other words: They admit, they do not even have that 210 wolves. At least they get a little fresh blood into packs they have. I think the whole thing could be called “management”. What a crazy world….or does this sound all too familiar?”

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Yes. It sounds all too familiar. Ralph Maughan