Please comment today.
This proposal relies on a study indicating that the rooting of free-roaming pigs in California reduces the number and size of oak tree seedlings. So does human land development ““ and much more so. Why is the pressure against the pigs?
To send comments about the project:
California resident and everyone can comment. You can send your comments to the U.S. Forest Service by mailing them before June 26 to Pete Gomben, environmental coordinator, Cleveland National Forest, 10845 Rancho Bernardo Road, Suite 200, San Diego, CA 92127. Comments may be made by phone at 858-674-2901 or fax at 858-673-6192. Comments may also be emailed in a Word (.doc) rich text format (.rtf), portable document format (.pdf) or text format to Pete Gomben.
The pigs – there are 200 to 300 feral pigs in San Diego County – are already subjected to hunting. Starting this year, the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management, together with the USDA Wildlife Services and possibly contract companies, are planning to use cage traps, corral traps, federal hunters with guns and dogs and even aerial hunting to kill all the pigs they can.
It will cost taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars, and, as these bloodbaths usually are, it will be futile. It will also have unintended ecological consequences.
The present scoping period in which the public may comment on the project extends to June 26. A draft environmental assessment will be drawn up, and the public will have another 30 days to comment on that draft document.
The more we comment, the better for the pigs. Point out (in your own words) that:
A. This plan is ethically reprehensible.
B. It is an unnecessary waste of resources.
C. Once feral (reportedly turned loose for hunting purposes), the pigs now fit into the ecosystem: they are naturalized in it. They eat acorns and other seeds, grass and water plants. They also benefit the oak tree population by burying acorns into the ground with their hooves, and they in turn are a food source for mountain lions.