House passes coyote legislation
By Jackelyn Severin
A bill allowing landowners to shoot coyotes from snowmobiles has passed the House of Representatives. Representative Mike Verchio of Hill City says predators have become a problem for ranchers and landowners. He says Senate Bill 55 helps ranchers protect their livestock and control a growing coyote population.
“The estimated number of cattle and calves lost to coyotes in South Dakota in 2005 was 1,900 head. The estimated value of these cattle and calves lost to all predators in 2005 was 1.29 million dollars,” says Verchio.
Representative Ed Iron Cloud of Porcupine spoke against the bill. He says this bill doesn’t address the bigger problem of shrinking habitat for wildlife and coyotes.
“There’s basically no place out there left for them. All the fields, all the habitat, you know, is all farmed up. Everything’s taken. They’ve, they’re only doing what they’ve been doing for millions of years is surviving like everybody else but now they’re in the way,” says Iron Cloud.
The bill passed by a vote of 47 to 21 and now goes to the Governor.
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