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Is Common Sense Dead?

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Every person has a point where they just shake their head in disbelief because no sense can be made of a situation no matter how it’s spun. Case in point is the Rocky Mountain goat at Dinosaur National Monument (“DNM”). Typically when you hear about a story that just doesn’t sound right, you can find a little bit of rationale or common sense if you dig hard enough. But the National Park Service’s plan to “remove” by “lethal means” a billy from DNM defies logic and the states of Colorado and Utah are not practicing what they preach when it comes to game management.

The story first broke when two folks were traveling through DNM and noticed an odd, white animal climbing through some rocks. They photographed and show it to DNM park officials. After doing a bit of investigation it is presumed that he wandered about 50 miles from his Utah herd to take up residence in DNM. Now there is a proposal to kill him because “mountain goats are exotic species” and federal policy bars the introduction of exotic species into the DNM ecosystem. The National Park Service is being so strict in their policies that they would rather have him dead than living in the area. But there is a problem—if an animal makes its way to DNM on its own is it really “introduced”? It’s understandable that park officials may want to keep plants and animals from being purposely placed but that is not the case here.

To make matters worse, neither Colorado nor Utah will take him over disease concerns. Relocation has been discussed and there are plenty of conservation organizations such as the Rocky Mountain Goat Alliance that will assist in the relocation efforts. The hollow reasoning by the states involved (DNM straddles the Utah-Colorado border) is easily remedied quarantining the animal for a short period of time, wiping his nose with a swab and testing him for disease. If neither state is willing to take him knowing he will be killed as a result, shouldn’t they be concerned about what happens to him afterward? Each state has wanton waste laws that preclude taking a game animal.

The National Park Service has set up a comment period through March 9, 2016. Many folks are providing their input. Some opine that he should stay while others advocate relocation. If he is to be “removed by lethal means”, some suggest that a tag should be auctioned (which probably won’t happen because there is no hunting in DNM) while others are requesting that his hide and horns be donated for educational purposes to a conservation organization like the Rocky Mountain Goat Alliance. Whether he is shot or not, all sportsmen and conservationists agree that he shouldn’t go to waste. Follow the link below to learn more and offer comments:

http://parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?parkID=50&projectID=55971

Additional background and information can be found here:

http://www.sltrib.com/home/3514002-155/national-park-officials-plan-to-shoot

http://www.denverpost.com/news/ci_29491263/dinosaur-national-monument-plans-remove-rocky-mountain-goats


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About Jason Peak

Jason Peak
Jason Peak is a practicing attorney licensed in Nevada and California. He specializes in civil litigation and holds the highest distinction as a Martindale-Hubbell AV-rated attorney. After receiving a B.A. from the University of Nevada in Criminal Justice and Juris Doctor from Willamette University in Salem, Oregon, he grew his practice into one of the largest Nevada-only civil litigation firms in the state. Jason uses his legal background to help hunters maneuver the legal maze of hunting regulations and rules. He is always willing to help hunters with any questions they may have. Jason loves bowhunting and chases trophy big game from California to Wyoming with the occasional stint in Kansas hunting whitetails.

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5 comments

  1. Well said, Jason Peak! This goat must not be wasted!

  2. This is just another example of man playing god. It’s a goat which lives in the mountains, what’s going to stop another goat from following the same routes. The animal should be welcomed as it is part of the mountain Eco system far more than man is. This relocation, removal thought process is wrong. Out of anyplace that a mountain goat should be welcomed it should be a national park. The park is missing the point, people will come to visit the park more with the chance to see the wandering goat than to see no goat at all.

    We are supposed to be stewards of the land in parks, not destroyers!

  3. I cannot believe this conversation is taking place, if it did relocate itself then what the hell is the problem, animals DO NOT know borders. I live in Wisconsin and we put up with the wolves that DO NOT know borders either, of course what we do in Wisconsin is just the opposite of what they want to do in Utah and Colorado…we just let them mate like rabbits.

  4. There is no common sense in Colorado. Early this year I found a bull elk with a broken leg, bone sticking through the skin. I called to inform them of the animal and nothing was done. I was told that his leg would either heal or fall off, and that the DOW was not going to put the elk down. This pissed me off cuz I have done this in the passed and the DOW officer asked if I could take care of it and use the meat then do so. This time they would not let do so and would not send an office to take care of it. Colorado= no common sense

  5. Are they going to kill wolves which have been “introduced” if they show up there as well? I doubt it.

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