A First Nation community 20 kilometres north of Williams Lake is the latest to give its support to the Cow Moose Sign Project.
Visible by motorists travelling Highway 97, the sign was installed at Soda Creek Indian Band’s (SCIB) Deep Creek (Cmetem) Reserve on Wednesday, Sept. 2.
Kukpi7 (Chief) Sheri Sellars said they are proud to support the project.
“Xat’sull-Cmetem strongly oppose the recent increases in moose hunting, especially the antlerless moose hunt,” Sellars said in a news release.
“Declining moose populations affect our traditional rights. Revitalizing moose populations is crucial for current and future generations.”
This year’s increase of moose tags by the B.C. Government, especially antlerless, is opposed by the Northern Shuswap Tribal Council and Northern Secwepemc te Qelmucw (NStQ), which SCIB is a part of.
The Cow Moose Sign Project was started in 2014 by Williams Lake resident Dan Simmons to stop the harvesting of antlerless moose in B.C.. Since then, more than 30 First Nations communities have joined the campaign, including the Tsilhqot’in National Government, who sounded the alarm in 2015 over too much access created by logging, as well as poaching and selling the meat.
Sellars hopes the increased signage and pressure from First Nations will lead to better moose management.
“Some of our communities have made the difficult decision to restrict our own citizens’ rights to hunt by placing bans on the cow moose hunt and any additions to the antlerless moose limited entry hunt will put us in conflict and make it more difficult to uphold our own policies,” she said.
SCIB donated the billboard structure and the costs to rent it.