Congressmen Applauded for Taking Action to Protect Captive Wildlife

On October 8, The Fund for Animals and The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) praised Congressmen Sam Farr (D-CA), Christopher Shays (R-CT), and 20 other Representatives for introducing H.R.5242, the Captive Mammal Protection Act of 2004, a bill that will crack down on the inhumane and unsporting practice of killing animals in "canned hunts."

The bipartisan legislation would ban the interstate transport of captive mammals for the purpose of shooting them in canned hunts. A canned hunt is one of the most egregiously cruel forms of hunting, because wild animals are confined in fenced enclosures, often raised by hand and artificially fed, then offered up to high paying customers to shoot for trophies. The practice is so unethical that the majority of rank-and-file hunters do not support it.

"Canned hunts are something even most hunters oppose, and we thank Congressmen Farr and Shays for introducing this legislation,"said Jeff Leitner, public policy coordinator for The Fund for Animals. "We are extremely grateful to them for their bipartisan leadership in opposing these cruel hunts, and for their commitment to carry this fight into the next Congress."

"Regardless of one's attitude toward hunting, all of us can agree that shooting a helpless animal in an enclosed space doesn't amount to fair chase and is no more than slaughter,"said Wayne Pacelle, president of The HSUS.

Canned hunts, which are at least partially banned in 19 states, foster an increased risk of disease transmission, including Chronic Wasting Disease and tuberculosis, given the enclosed conditions in which these mammals are kept. The coalition of groups opposed to canned hunts is diverse, including animal protection, hunting, environmental, zoological, and conservation organizations, as well as many state wildlife agencies.

The Fund for Animals offers a comprehensive report, Canned Hunts: Unfair At Any Price,"which analyzes the statutes and regulations governing canned hunts in all 50 states. More information is available on The Fund for Animals' web site dedicated to this issue, ",”

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