Russia`s Far East natives may kill 5 deer per each wolf skin
Wolf and deer hunting has become a popular sport among residents of Russia`s easternmost region of Chukotka near Alaska, a state wildlife inspector said on Thursday.
Yegor Vereshchagin said for each wolf skin brought into the wildlife reserve organization, each hunter will receive a license to kill five wild deer.
The inspector said such measures were necessary because the populations of wolf and wild deer have begun to threaten the domestic deer herding, which is extremely important for the natives of the Chukotka Peninsula.
"Since the beginning of fall, 290 licenses have been issued for hunting the wild animals and the number of hunters is increasing," Vershchagin said. He said that the number will grow because not everyone has turned in their wolf skins yet.
The peninsula is mainly populated by the Chukchi, relatives of the Eskimos.
According to the wildlife inspector, the approved hunt "kills two birds with one stone" because both wild deer and wolves damage the domestic deer industry on an equal basis, especially grazing pastures and the domestic deer population. Last year, some 1,500 domestic deer were lost.
Though any domestic deer farmer may shoot a wolf on sight, the region`s wildlife management organization hopes to cull both populations. Vershchagen said this would give the native Chukchi the chance to stock up on venison, which is an important part of their diet.