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Commentaries and editorials

Make 'River Lions' Fair Game

by Kerry Crandall
Letter to Editor, The Oregonian, May 9, 2005

Oh, how times have changed! In the late 1960s I was a member of a U.S. Forest Service surveying crew working in Port Orford. Upon arrival in town, several of us went to the local sheriff and asked what we could do in the line of recreational shooting, fishing and so on.

We were told that we could go out on the jetty to fish, and while waiting for fish, feel free to shoot any sea lions we saw. We took advantage of that option, to the great enjoyment of local fishermen, who treated us to a free libation or two at the local watering hole.

I am very gratified to see that the Indian tribes are asking for that same option to protect the dwindling salmon runs. Any time that an apex predator is allowed to multiply unchecked, something has to be done to fix the problem.

For too long, game management policies have been decided by feel-good liberal voters, and it is high time that those policies are returned to the hands of competent professionals.

Whether it be problem bears, cougars or sea lions, these predators can no longer be allowed to multiply unchecked. In this case the Marine Mammal Protection Act must be modified to allow killing sea lions. Once they leave the sea, they should become targets. After all, they're not called California River Lions.

Kerry Crandall, Hillsboro
Make 'River Lions' Fair Game
The Oregonian, May 9, 2005

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