Permit Issues – June 28, 2013

June and cubsJune and cubsToday, we received a letter from DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr that ends our special permit for research and education on July 31, 2013.  The reasons given in Landwehr’s letter for ending our permit (lack of publications, public safety, our behavior with research bears) are unfounded and appear to be written to sway the public.  These are not the real reasons for his ending our research. 

In 2011, the DNR expressed deep anger over the number of letters we asked you to send in support of protection for radio-collared bears and over comments on Facebook against hunters following the death of Hope. We have been aware for some time now that the DNR has been trying to build a case, any case, to stop our research.  

The permit and Commissioner Landwehr’s cover letter are available online at Amended Permit and Cover Letter.

Family works log for ant pupaeWhole family works log for ant pupaeWe spent the winter and much of the spring writing a response to the unfounded allegations they have been throwing at us since the letter-writing campaign in 2011.  At 82 pages, our response is long.  The first four and a half pages of it give some idea of the situation.  The “In Closing” statement, one and a quarter pages, (page 28) sums it up.  Our response, Permit Perspectives June 2013, was sent to Commissioner Landwehr a week ago and is now available online.

We appreciate the strong support from the thousands of Lily Fans who have followed our research and helped make possible one of the biggest educational outreach efforts ever done for bears.  

We have greatly enjoyed having Charlie Russell with us this week.  Tonight we shared him with an attentive and appreciative audience at Vermillion Community College.  He received a standing ovation at the end of his compelling talk.

Thank you for all you do.

—Lynn Rogers and Sue Mansfield, Biologists, Wildlife Research Institute and North American Bear Center

All photos taken today unless otherwise noted.

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