Nevada Wildlife Alliance started its life as Nevadans for Responsible Wildlife in August, 2014. The founders, Mark E. Smith and Don Molde, wanted a platform to inform the public about a lawsuit they just filed against the Nevada Board of Wildlife Commissioners regarding failure of the commission to protect non-target species from accidental injury and death by private fur trappers. In addition to a new Facebook group of that name, a website, http://www.nrwm.org was created.
A year later, we now find a need to change our name and expand our mission to accommodate the rapidly increasing public awareness and interest in wildlife management and other animal issues. Other wildlife and wild horse advocacy groups have shown an interest in collaborating together and finding common ground to pursue our various missions. Nevada Wildlife Alliance hopes to provide the platform to make that happen.
Nevada Wildlife Alliance is a registered non-profit organization with the Nevada Secretary of State.
We are dedicated to the idea that wildlife management in Nevada must become more democratic in structure and practice. The current arrangement as prescribed by Nevada law gives sportsmen, ranchers and farmers seven of nine votes on the Nevada Board of Wildlife Commissioners Because of this obvious imbalance of representation (resident hunters, trappers and fishermen number about 5% of Nevada’s population), proper democratic stewardship of the public’s wildlife heritage cannot be exercised without bias.
We dedicate ourselves to providing education about wildlife matters to the public and to decision makers who influence laws and regulations which affect wildlife, to facilitating the purpose and mission of other wildlife and animal advocacy groups, to provide commentary where it is needed, to interact with the Nevada Board of Wildlife Commissioners and the Nevada Department of Wildlife to further our aims, and to advise the press and social media of our concerns.
- LAWSUIT: Our lawsuit against the Nevada Board of Wildlife Commissioners is scheduled for trial starting May 9, 2015. Our amended complaint, filed in December of last year, details our concerns which we hope to present in court in May, 2016.
- WILDLIFE SERVICES: We continue to support the 2012 lawsuit brought by WildEarthGuardians against Nevada Wildlife Services which alleges that Wildlife Services is operating with outdated scientific information. A recent 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decision confirmed that WildEarthGuardians does have standing to pursue the case on its merits. One of us (DM) is the Nevada plaintiff in the case.
- BLACK BEAR HUNT: Nevada’s black bear hunt, established by the Nevada Board of Wildlife Commissioners in 2010 after 80 years of not doing so, has been and continues to be very unpopular with the general public. We will continue to oppose this unnecessary “boutique” (quota is 20 bears/year of an estimated few hundred bears total) event and seek its termination. Visit No Bear Hunt Nevada (nobearhuntnv.org) for more information.
- TRAPPING: Trapping reform is desperately needed in Nevada. We support TrailSafe Nevada and all others who seek needed changes such as shortened trap visitation interval (now 96 hours), trap registration, quotas, protection for non-target species (including domestic pets) and continued vigilance by law enforcement to detect violators.
- WILD HORSE/BURROS: We support wild horse advocacy groups such as Hidden Valley Wild Horse Protection Fund (hiddenvalleyhorses.com) which pursue better treatment and handling of all wild horses, whether they are animals protected by the Wild Horse and Burro Act of 1971 or regarded as “feral” and subject to management by the Nevada Department of Agriculture. (Note: We are unconcerned about whether wild horses can/should be regarded as wildlife. What is clear is that the horse evolved on this continent, left and returned. It is an icon of the West. We support its existence, the need for decent and sensible management of the animal, and the promotion of the iconic status of the animal as something which enhances the State of Nevada.)
- CARNIVORES/OMNIVORES: The management of omnivores and carnivores in Nevada….coyotes, mountain lions, bobcats, ravens, reptiles and other non-ungulate species….must be improved. Nevada Wildlife Alliance embraces all wildlife species but focuses much of its concern on those species which, typically, receive short shrift from wildlife management agencies. In our view, these species are generally regarded highly by the general public and must be given the respect they deserve and that the public expects.
- ABUSES OF THE PUBLIC TRUST DOCTRINE: Gross misuse/abuse of wildlife species that are included in the Public Trust Doctrine (which says all wildlife is a public heritage) must be opposed. Coyote killing contests are a current example. Mountain lion management in Nevada…..year-round hunting season/24-hour per day/unlimited hounding… is another example. Waterfowl hunting in Nevada continues without adjustment from federal maximum guidelines despite severe drought conditions in hunting areas. Nevada is the only Western state that allows commercial reptile collection (15,000/year).
- SJR 11 OPPOSITION: We will oppose passage of SJR 11 during the 2017 Nevada Legislature, a resolution which would memorialize a constitutional right to hunt, fish and trap in the Nevada Constitution if passed as a ballot measure.
- SUPPORT OTHERS: While we prefer to focus on wildlife and animal issues other than domestic animals, we support the Nevada Humane Society, the Nevada SPCA and other domestic animal groups on certain issues such as the feral cat Trap/Neuter/Return program which is of interest to our members and which appears to offer a long term benefit.
A Word About Membership
For now, Nevada Wildlife Alliance does not have formal membership. The closest thing to membership would be to “Like” our Facebook page of the same name. For those who are not on Facebook, we welcome your interest. Provide us your email address on our Contact page. We will keep post periodically regarding events and significant developments. Donations are welcome to help us help Nevada’s wildlife. Donate buttons are located at the bottom of this page and elsewhere on our web site
Wildlife Advocacy in Nevada
A Brief Summary Since 1975 Sportsmen have been organized for some time. For example, Nevada Waterfowl Association, Nevada Bighorns Unlimited, Nevada Trappers Association and other groups have had a presence for many years. Sportsmen have been energetic in promoting their self-serving interests. They have also been successful in providing a PR image to the general public, legislators and others that many of us regard as misleading, particularly in this day and age. Read More…history of advocacy in Nevada