Yellowstone National Park has rejected the adoption of new methods to vaccinate bison from Brucellosis.
Brucellosis is a disease that can cause bison and other large animals to abort their calves. Yellowstone currently hand-vaccinates just a few bison, and only when they leave the park. But nearly a decade ago, there were legal disputes over bison management, and the park agreed to look into vaccinating bison in the wild, using air guns.
The National Park Service does not wish to start using air guns to vaccinate Yellowstone bison for Brucellosis.
Brucellosis is a disease that can cause bison and other large animals to abort their calves. Currently, the park only vaccinates bison when they leave the park, and even then, only a few animals are vaccinated. But Park Spokesman Al Nash says after some legal disputes regarding bison management over a decade ago, Yellowstone agreed to look into new options.
The State Legislature passed a bill that would allow hunters to try and thin wild bison herds in northwest Wyoming. But an amendment added in the Senate led to a lot of debate in the House.
The Senate amendment would give $250,000 to the Wyoming Attorney General’s office to defend the second amendment rights of Wyoming citizens “to possess and use any firearm” that is useful in hunting bison. Many saw this as a way to add a gun rights law to a bill that deals with bison hunting.
Some environmental groups say they support a plan to alter bison hunting rules. The proposal by Rep. Keith Gingery of Jackson would end the once-in-a-lifetime limit on hunting cow bison and would drastically reduce the cost of nonresident licenses.
The goal is to get the bison population down to about 500, from a high of 12-hundred.
Lloyd Dorsey with the Greater Yellowstone Coalition likes the idea.
Government officials plan haze a large herd of migrating bison back into Yellowstone National Park this week - an annual event that is again drawing opposition from wildlife advocates and American Indian groups.
Montana state veterinarian Marty Zaluski says an estimated 400 bison are outside the park in the West Yellowstone area. Government workers could start driving the animals back into Yellowstone using a helicopter as early as Wednesday.
Hundreds of bison leave the park annually during winter to graze at lower elevations.