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Mountain Lion Hunting Halted

December 11, 1987

A San Francisco Superior Court judge has called a halt to the first mountain lion season in 16 years (Part I, Nov. 24), saying that state Fish and Game Commission hadn't properly considered the consequences of the hunt.

The judge's action has a welcome side effect. Judge Lucy McCabe's ruling means that, in the future, California Fish and Game will have to do a better job of analyzing the impact of hunting on all game animals. Provided, of course, the decision withstands an appeal.

Now some hunters are going to moan and groan about not being able to shoot a cougar. Others will continue to argue that without mountain lion hunting, livestock and deer heards will be in increasing jeopardy.

But there's a larger issue at stake. Like oil, land or water, wildlife is a precious, limited resource. It should be treated as such. All too often, it is not.

The California emblem is the grizzly bear. The last time anyone saw a grizzly in California was in 1924. That was a time when hunters decided which animals would live and die.

McCabe's decision is the stuff of the future. We should all support it.


Van Nuys

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