By Corey Allen, UBC Public Affairs
Living in a place lauded for its natural beauty and vast wildlife, British Columbians take great pride in their great outdoors. So when it comes to protecting and preserving the wild animals that live in B.C., passions can leave people divided.
Take the debate over the cull of wolves – conservationists argue killing wolves helps preserve moose populations, supporting the sustainable killing of wildlife as a tool that promotes biodiversity. Animal welfare scientists rail against this position, focusing instead on the suffering of individual animals and the method of killing.
But the debate over the human threat to wildlife doesn’t have to be polarizing, suggests new research from the University of British Columbia.
Using an anonymous online survey, more than 350 B.C. residents – including government officials, biologists, conservationists, animal welfare scientists and the general public – were asked to rate the level of harm caused by a variety of human activities that impact wildlife.
The results surprised Sara Dubois, who conducted the survey as part of her doctoral studies in UBC’s animal welfare program. [read more]