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Commentaries and editorials

Court Puts a Stop to Killing
Sea Lions at Bonneville Dam

by Rob Manning
Oregon Public Broadcasting, November 23, 2010

(DEAN RUTZ) Only male sea lions -- California and Steller's -- are found at the dam. Both species may be hazed, but the Steller's are considered endangered and aren't euthanized. State and federal agencies can't go on killing sea lions at Bonneville Dam, after an appeals court decision Tuesday.

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals basically agreed with the Humane Society of the United States - the lead group that sued over a joint state and federal program to remove and kill sea lions.

The Humane Society's Sharon Young lays out the basic legal problem the court found with the sea lion program.

Sharon Young: "The agency did not do an adequate job of considering the variety of other impacts it was allowing that were having a much greater effect on salmon than the sea lions."

In blocking any further sea lion killings, the ruling questions how the feds could say that losing 17 percent of imperiled salmon to fishing wasn't a problem, when losing 4 percent to sea lions was.

The decision reverses a lower court decision from two years ago and sends the policy back to the federal fisheries' agency.

The feds could appeal, or adjust the policy and try again.

Related Pages:
Study: Fewer Salmon Being Eaten by Sea Lions at Bonneville by Rob Manning, Oregon Public Broadcasting,10/27/10
Season of Sea Lion Trapping Ends; NOAA to Evaluate Program by Staff, Columbia Basin Bulletin, 6/4/10
Sea Lions Continue to Munch Salmon, Despite Hazing by Scott Learn, The Oregonian, 5/13/10
Listen Sea Lion Buffet at Bonneville Dam Gets Messy by Tom Banse, Oregon Public Broadcasting, 5/3/10
Tribes Help Haze Sea Lions to Save Salmon on Columbia by Erik Lacitis, Seattle Times, 4/11/10
Chinook Salmon: Dams are Real Threat Not Sea Lions by Jean Williams, The Examiner, 4/2/10
Anger Mounts as Sea Lions Killed for Eating Endangered Fish by Staff, Daily Finance, 4/2/10
State Euthanizes Five More Sea Lions at Bonneville Dam by Staff, The Columbian, 3/11/10


Rob Manning
Court Puts a Stop to Killing Sea Lions at Bonneville Dam
Oregon Public Broadcasting, November 23, 2010

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