Is "Trophy Hunting" Causing Decline in BC Mountain Lion Population?

From this story in the Vancouver Sun:
_Trophy hunting and habitat loss are putting B.C.'s cougar population at risk and provincial policies do not adequately protect the big cats, says a new report by three scientists from the Raincoast Conservation Foundation. The study was released Wednesday in anticipation of the province shortly publishing its first cougar management plan, which is under internal review. For now, the province has no central planning document for cougars and relies on hunting regulations to safeguard populations, the study says.

__"...Cougar trophy hunts continue to be held on Vancouver Island. Hunts are usually held with hounds that tree the cougar. Radio collars then send a message to the waiting hunter, who shoots the cougar out of the tree. "Conservation and management of B.C. cougars ought to consider commonly held ethical values of British Columbians regarding biodiversity conservation and the welfare of individual cougars," said Corinna Wainwright, one of the authors of the report. Report author Paul Paquet, Raincoast senior scientist and a mammalian carnivore expert, said research and education should form the basis of conservation plans. Instead, the province manages populations to meet pressure from lobby groups such as the trophy hunting industry and public safety concerns, he said. "I don't think any species should be hunted if we don't know the numbers," he said._

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