May 14th marked the end of this year’s persecution of Double-crested Cormorants by Parks Canada’s Point Pelee National Park division.
Let’s make this the very last day of the very last year of this ridiculous cull.
We ask you to email the Minister who oversees Parks Canada to urge an end to this nonsense at last. Too many tax-payer dollars have been wasted. Too many birds have suffered and died.
On May 14th, Parks Canada staff travelled by boat to Middle Island in Lake Erie to shoot Double-crested Cormorants. They found the foliage on the trees is now so abundant they could not get clear view of the birds, so they packed up and left without firing a shot. They had one day of shooting this year, far less than in most previous years.
Thankfully, the nesting birds are now left in peace on an island that they have every right to use as their nursery – a wildlife nursery that should be celebrated and protected by federally-funded employees, not violently invaded.
We are relieved that another year of shooting is now over, and that the kill-days were far fewer – only one – yet we are angry too. We are angry that an organization that is paid by us to protect our parks and wildlife sanctuaries, instead behaves in such brutal ways.
We are angry, too, at the arrogance that Parks Canada managers demonstrated this year by their stubborn insistence to engage in the cull during Ontario’s Covid 19 lock-down order. It’s our opinion that putting 7 people in one boat, where physical distancing is impossible, for a journey taking more than one hour, was contrary to Ontario’s lockdown orders. Yet, the managers at Point Pelee National Park were willing to show this disrespect for the health of local citizens. For the first time we did not send our own staff to monitor the cull out of respect for the provincial directive. Instead, we hired a local resident to monitor the activity while alone in his own boat. Animal Alliance of Canada respected the provincial health directive, while a tax-payer funded agency did not.
Let’s do all we can to make this the last year that Cormorants, Herons, Egrets and now American White Pelicans are affected during their critical nesting season. All of these birds make use of Middle Island and all are disturbed and distressed by shooters killing cormorants, often in nests close to their own.
Please email Canada’s Minister of Environment and Climate Change, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson.
Ask him to end this misguided project and to make this the last year it takes place.
It’s best to use your own words, but here are suggested talking points:
– In 2020, Ontario’s provincial government declared war on Double-crested Cormorants by wrongly classifying them as a “game bird”, and opening up a hunting season that has the potential to wipe out Ontario’s cormorant population in just one season. This hunt has no scientific basis and appears to be in response to a minority of citizens who simply dislike this species of bird. Now more than ever, it’s time for tax-supported Parks Canada to end this money-wasting campaign against cormorants.
– By any standard, the entire population of birds on Middle Island has been sadly reduced since the killing program has been in place. It’s time for the island to be left in peace and for Parks Canada to let the natural world recover and allow for ecological succession without human interference.
The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson
Minister of Environment and Climate Change
Please DONATE today so we can continue to do all we can to protect cormorants.
Because of the kindness of our donors, we’ve been able to monitor every day of killing on Middle Island since the culling first began. For safety, we must hire an experienced boat captain to take us over Lake Erie to anchor off Middle Island. We’ve experienced bad weather and rely on a skilled boat captain to keep us safe. We’ve sent our staff to gather photos and to witness the shooting every year except this one. Even this year, we did not leave Parks Canada free to kill birds without being monitored. We hired a local captain to monitor the cull on our behalf. This is an expensive project, but an essential one. When birds are being killed, it’s important that advocates witness and document the activities.
Please donate today so we can continue our fight to protect wild animals from those ideologically driven to persecute them.
Parks Canada uses our own tax dollars to kill cormorants. We rely on kind people like you to help us stand for the birds and against those who wish to harm them.