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Born Free USA's Expertise: A Resource for Legislators

Human/Wildlife Conflicts

Conflicts between humans and wildlife are increasing as urban sprawl escalates and native habitat is destroyed. Not every state regulates persons hired to deal with wildlife conflicts (commonly referred to as "Wildlife Control Operators," or WCOs). Oftentimes this industry is left with no oversight or any mechanism to ensure the efficient, safe, and humane resolution of human/wildlife conflicts. Legislation is necessary in order to provide adequate oversight of this industry and humane treatment of animals. We have worked on legislation regulating wildlife control operators in California and has worked with several state agencies to improve regulations governing this issue.

Communities in various regions of the U.S. are experiencing an increase in sightings of and encounters with coyotes. While the presence of coyotes sparks a variety of reactions among members of these communities, it is important to note that coyotes can play an invaluable role in maintaining the health of native ecosystems. For example, in the northeastern U.S., researchers speculate that coyotes help control overabundant white-tailed deer populations in suburban areas, thereby reducing the deer's impact on native vegetation and birds. The removal of a keystone species such as coyotes can lead to the unraveling of these landscapes.

We have taken a leading role in assisting states and communities with coyote conflicts. We advocate a multi-faceted approach to conflicts, including education, outreach, and legislation, in order to resolve coyote conflicts with practical, humane, and effective solutions. In addition, we have worked with state and local lawmakers on humane ways to coexist with coyotes.


Additional Issues

We also have expertise in a variety of other issues that may be of concern in your state. We would be happy to assist you with legislation in any of the following areas:

  • Regulating roadside zoos and menageries
  • Other animal-related issues

Please contact our Legal and Government Affairs Department by emailing legislation@bornfreeusa.org.

Legislation
Legislation