The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Wildlife Services is a horribly misnamed agency. It doesn't provide services for wildlife, it kills them. Needlessly. Expensively. Wastefully. And not just wildlife: family pets also.
Recently the McCurtain family in Gresham, Oregon suffered the heartrending loss of their dog, Maggie. Wildlife Services killed Maggie. Probably illegally (the family is suing Wildlife Services). Definitely incompetently.
Predator Defense tells the sorry tale.
Imagine a federal wildlife agency setting deadly "instant-kill" traps within 45 feet of your suburban back yard where your children play. Imagine that one of those government-set traps kills your beloved dog and no one returns for the trap, or to even say they're sorry.
This sounds like the kind of government abuse and secrecy one would see exposed on "60 Minutes," and it should be. However, that is not the case in Gresham, Oregon, a suburb of Portland, where the government has made every effort to intentionally hide such a tragedy.
The agency responsible? Wildlife Services, a division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Animal, Plant, and Health Inspection Services.
Wild Earth Guardians has exposed Wildlife Services for the incompetent, dangerous, environmentally clueless animal killing machine that this government agency is. Read "War on Wildlife," or at least the two page executive summary.
There's also a good overview of what Wildlife Services does wrong on the Predator Defense web site.
But why read? Watch a You Tube video.
Doug and Denise McCurtain movingly describe how their beloved family dog, Maggie, was killed in their own back yard by Wildlife Services. Lots of statistics can be cited about how Wildlife Services recklessly kills birds, coyotes, and other animals (including pets) for no good reason. Those facts are important.
The McCurtain's experience, though, cuts through the abstractions. Here's the down to earth truth about how cruel Wildlife Services is: "Maggie's Story."
Watch it, then do what Predator Defense suggests: email "60 Minutes" at firstname.lastname@example.org and ask them to do a story on Maggie's killing and Wildlife Services. If we can cast enough light on Wildlife Services, hopefully it will be defunded as a useless agency.