Coalition of Scientists Condemn “Georgia Coyote Challenge” State Sanctioned Coyote Slaughter Commenced March 1

ATLANTA, Georgia – In a letter to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (DNR), eighteen scientists with Project Coyote condemned the state agency-sanctioned “Georgia Coyote Challenge,” stating, “This purported management tool is nothing more than a wildlife killing contest (WKC), tempting participants to kill coyotes for a chance to win a lifetime hunting license.”

The Georgia Coyote Challenge (GCC) started yesterday, and has already come under intense public criticism and scientific scrutiny. Project Coyote’s letter, written by some of the most preeminent wild canid ecologists in the country, states, “The Georgia DNR argues that the Georgia Coyote Challenge is important for achieving management objectives for other species, especially game species. There is no credible evidence that indiscriminate killing of coyotes or other predators effectively serves any genuine interest in managing other species.”

“For a state agency whose mission is to ‘sustain, enhance, protect and conserve Georgia’s natural, historic and cultural resources’ to sponsor such a program is reprehensible,” states Dr. Chris Mowry, Project Coyote Science Advisory Board member, founder of the Atlanta Coyote Project, and co-author of the letter. He adds, “The Georgia Coyote Challenge is both inhumane and unwise.”

Project Coyote scientists also point to the DNR’s contradictory position on organized coyote killing programs, citing the Georgia Deer Management Plan (2015-2024), which was prepared by the DNR and states: “Coyote bounties [are] viewed as an ineffective tool. … [Wildlife Resources Division] and [the Georgia State] General Assembly oppose coyote bounty programs.”

“Project Coyote’s science advisory board has exposed the DNR in a shameful contradiction,” stated Camilla Fox, Project Coyote Founder and Executive Director. “The DNR’s own research clearly shows that indiscriminate coyote killing is ‘ineffective’ and yet here they are promoting a statewide incentivized coyote kill fest that has no legitimate wildlife management purpose whatsoever.”

“We are also very concerned about the public safety threat the Georgia Coyote Challenge poses to people and pets,” Mowry stated. “Encouraging thousands of Georgians to shoot as many coyotes as they can—sometimes right outside of city limits—is a recipe for disaster.”

“Aside from the ecological insanity and public safety concerns of the Georgia Coyote Challenge, it is ethically indefensible,” stated Fox. “Coyote pups born this spring will be orphaned and left to die a slow and painful death when their parents are shot. This kill fest should be halted immediately.”

Project Coyote led a successful effort to end the killing of coyotes, bobcats, foxes and other animals for prizes and other inducements in California in 2014. The non-profit organization is part of a coalition in New Mexico currently pushing legislation through the state legislature that would ban coyote killing contests statewide.


WATCH PROJECT COYOTE’S FILM TRAILER “Unfair Game: Ending Wildlife Killing Contests” here

WATCH a video about coyotes in Georgia with Project Coyote Science Advisory Board member Chris Mowry here.


Project Coyote is a national non-profit organization, comprised of a coalition of scientists, educators, ranchers and citizen leaders promoting compassionate conservation and coexistence between people and wildlife through education, science and advocacy. We work to change laws and policies to protect native carnivores from abuse and mismanagement, advocating coexistence instead of killing. We seek to change negative attitudes toward coyotes, wolves and other misunderstood predators by replacing ignorance and fear with understanding, respect and appreciation.

Copyright © 2017 Project Coyote, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
P.O. Box 5007, Larkspur, CA 94977


5 thoughts on “Coalition of Scientists Condemn “Georgia Coyote Challenge” State Sanctioned Coyote Slaughter Commenced March 1

  1. Of course it is a wildlife killing contest, and you can bet the good old boys will love it.

    If we go back far enough, the good old boys are a non-native, intrusive and harmful species. Maybe another killing contest is in order:)

  2. What we are experiencing is the the clash between ignorant, red-neck rural “cultures” and those who are not: The most opposition to such hunts is found in non-rural areas, among those better educated and concerned about cruelty issues.
    These prejudiced folks not only exist in the south, but in literally every state in this country, certainly in The West. Even states like Maine, Vermont, have such contests, and they are gainly popularity. Coyote-killing contests are growing, as human hatred, ignorance and prejudice grows across this country; whether it be against animals that are perceived as “devils” or humans who have darker skin or other languages, especially if they are Mexican or Muslim–or look as if they are.
    What we see as the “good ol’boy (or cowboy) mentality, is spreading to states even on the East and West Coasts, glorifying the good ol’ days, promoting hunting/trapping, and supporting the livestock mentality. Rodeos and other “western culture” activities of cruelty are seen in most states these days.
    Native Americans, as well, are very often involved in Rodeo, trapping and hunting, and they also do their share, unfortunately, of coyote killing. Mountain lion trophy hunting guide trips are now promoted by at least one Apache Tribe group in NM. Navajos feature regular Rodeos as well, and they are very popular.
    As this country becomes more fearful & less tolerant of “others” whether fellow humans or animals, things will get more violent.

  3. The F&G’s (DNR’s) state that their quotas and seasons are backed up by current science, yet they snub the actual scientific community when the scientists say it is wrong.

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