Thursday, November 30, 2006

To save salmon, states want to kill sea lions

To save salmon, states want to kill sea lionsTHE ASSOCIATED PRESSGRANTS PASS, Ore. -- The states of Oregon, Washington and Idaho asked thefederal government Monday for permission to kill sea lions eating salmon andsteelhead at Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River.Fish and wildlife agencies from the three states joined to formally seekpermission to use lethal force under terms of the Marine Mammal ProtectionAct. The request does not include Steller's sea lions, which are protectedby the Endangered Species Act. The request will be considered by a taskforce of state and federal agencies, tribes, scientists, conservation andfishing groups in a review process that could take several years.A bill is pending in Congress to quickly give permits to kill problem sealions to the states and Indian tribes.While waiting for a decision, Oregon and Washington fish and wildlife crewswill increase hazing efforts to seven days a week during the peak of thespring chinook return next March. Techniques include throwing firecrackersat the sea lions, playing loud noises and chasing them with boats.
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