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Stop the Plan to Kill of Double-Crested Cormorants in Ohio

Stop the Plan to Kill of Double-Crested Cormorants in Ohio

This alert is no longer active, but here for reference. Cormorants still need your help.

The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has put forward a formal call for comments before it implements a plan to kill many members of the double-crested cormorant population in Ohio. The double-crested cormorant population in Ohio is extremely small, and would be at grave risk should this terrible massacre take place. Please join us in urging officials to cancel the killing of these innocent birds this year, and permanently. 

The double-crested cormorant is a popular bird in Ohio, due to the species’ colorful markings, expert diving skills, and graceful wingspan. They are extremely beautiful and brilliant birds. 

Regardless of how popular they are with Ohio birders and those who appreciate wild animals, however, they are equally as unpopular among the state's self-centered fishing industry and other monied interest groups. 

According to the Department's own assessment, Ohio’s total breeding population of cormorants has been fluctuating between only 2,400 to 4,300 pairs in the last several years. We are in the midst of the sixth mass extinction event partially fueled by governments and industries that wage war on small local populations of wild animals. Double-crested cormorants numbers are incredibly low, and wildlife scientists are raising the alarm that this barbaric slaughter could see population declines on the state or even regional level. 

The most common method of killing cormorants is shooting. Permits are issued, after which birds are hunted on water, in the air, and even at their breeding sites. Double-breasted cormorants are monogamous and some will suffer the devastating loss of their partners. Others who are maimed but not killed outright face a long, agonizing death.

Scientists are also speaking out that the science is not rigorous enough to demonstrate that cormorants are having a significant impact on particular resources, and certainly not enough to justify a mass killing. 

Instead, as noted, this hysteria for killing is being drummed up by a handful of moneyed interests. If they want to “manage the problem,” they could begin with nonlethal methods, such as netting or other nondestructive deterrents. But they would rather not be bothered, and simply outsource the killing free of charge, having US taxpayers foot the bill. 

Do you want your taxes to go toward killing small groups of helpless animals who are being unfairly targeted?

There is no definitive evidence Ohio’s double-crested cormorants are a problem at all. Instead, they are an innocent (and small) population of birds going about their bird business. All they ask of us is to be left alone. We should grant them that much. 

This alert is no longer active, but here for reference. Cormorants still need your help.

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