"Efforts To Investigate Wildlife Services' Methods Continue"

"Two recent documents are drawing renewed attention to the federal government's wildlife damage control program."

"One is a bipartisan letter from four members of the U.S. House of Representatives requesting a congressional investigation of Wildlife Services, a U.S. Department of Agriculture agency that specializes in killing birds and mammals considered a threat to livestock, the public and the environment.

The other is a 'notice of violation' this month fining an employee of the agency $2,400 for placing a spring-loaded sodium cyanide ejector near a family's home in Texas, which killed their dog. Earlier this year, a bill was introduced in Congress that would ban the devices, which have killed more than 3,400 non-offending animals by mistake since 2006, including 250 dogs, records show.

'Why would they put something out that would target animals that are no danger to anything?' said J.D. Walker, a car dealership manager whose dog was killed by the agency's poison southeast of Abilene last year. 'It makes absolutely no sense.'"

Tom Knudson reports for the Sacramento Bee June 25, 2012.

Source: Sacramento Bee, 06/26/2012