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Animal Justice Fights in Court to Stop Coyote Killing Contest

Yesterday, Animal Justice took the Ontario government to court to fight an illegal hunting contest, along with our colleagues at The Fur-Bearers and Coyote Watch Canada. We made the case that the government must comply with the law, and stop allowing an unlawful hunting contest that offers thousands of dollars in cash and prizes as a reward for killing coyotes.

The coyote hunting contest is put on each year by Chesher’s, a hunt shop near Belleville, Ontario. The shop offers rewards for the top heaviest coyotes who are killed as well as random “hidden weight prizes” for animals whose weights are closest to a secret number chosen by the store. Coyote hunting contests are clearly cruel and irresponsible. But it’s also illegal in Ontario to hunt for gain or bounty—unless a person or company receives a written permission from the province, which did not take place in this case. Our lawyers highlighted this point to the three judges who were on the case, and we expect to get a decision in the coming months.

The government has long turned a blind eye to illegal hunting contests. Chesher’s is even going so far as to host another contest right now, offering prizes to people who gun down innocent buck deers. Concerned citizens and animal protection and environmental groups have been pushing for years for these killing contests to stop, and for officials to crack down on them. Animal Justice and our partner organizations sent the message in court that no one is above the law! Please join us by sending a message to the Minister today, calling for the government to take action on illegal hunting contests!