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ARCHIVE - Coyote Solution - Kill Them All?

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Mr. Steven Koblik, President
The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens

1151 Oxford Road
San Marino, CA 91108
ph: 626-405-2100

The Huntington Board of Trustees

Stewart R. Smith, Chair:
Peter K. Barker:
Paul G. Haaga, Jr.:
Anne F. Rothenberg:
Geneva H. Thornton:

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Dear Mr. Koblik,

I am dismayed to learn the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens has one solution for coyotes on its property: Kill them. I respectfully ask you implement enduring and nonviolent means to coexist with wildlife. Visitor education and humane deterrents would certainly enhance your image more than neck snares and death.

Wiping out indigenous wildlife commonly triggers more problems than it resolves. Coyotes are integral to Los Angeles basin ecosystems. Killing them offsets natural cycles. For example, coyotes and foxes prey on rodents; when coyote numbers drop, rodent and smaller carnivore populations rise. Ultimately, coyotes offset the decline by reproducing more quickly and boosting their numbers to pre-slaughter levels or higher.

Moreover, snaring is ruthless. The steel-cable loop designed to strangle an animal within minutes usually fails. Necropsies of snared coyotes reveal that 63% suffer hemorrhaging (evidenced by grossly swollen heads), bloodied eyes, and broken teeth from trying to gnaw through the snare. Some animals break their own limbs to escape the pain.

A trap-and-kill approach to coyote conflicts is never ecologically or ethically defensible. Please stop Huntington's current "coyote abatement program."

I encourage you to partner with wildlife organizations that can help devise site-specific solutions for humane coexistence instead of extermination.

Thank you,

cc: Stewart R. Smith, Chair
Peter K. Barker
Paul G. Haaga, Jr.
Anne F. Rothenberg
Geneva H. Thornton
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source of information & references
VIDEO of neck-snared coyote (Warning: graphic content)
Project Coyote
Animal Welfare Institute
Humane Society of the United States

"The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens in San Marino, California, has been trapping and killing coyotes with cruel neck snares. Despite stating that it knows of "no instances in which coyotes...have acted aggressively toward Huntington visitors or staff," The Huntington maintains a "coyote abatement program" to pay a private trapper to snare and kill coyotes on its property... This winter a security guard was allegedly fired after attempting to free a coyote trapped in a snare. He was so disturbed by the coyote's suffering that he filmed it. There have been additional reports that at least one coyote has been left in a neck snare to die a slow, painful death." Camilla Fox, Project Coyote Director
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