The problem of unregulated hunting in wildlife refuges causes a significant harm to the environment and leads to the extinction of numerous species. The problem is aggravated by the fact that unregulated hunting often leads to illegal hunting activities in wildlife refuges, thus creating an even more depressing situation. Furthermore, the existing regulations regarding hunting in wildlife refuges could require more concrete wording and the introduction of specific boundaries. At present, 85% of its saltwater marshes are used for agricultural purposes (San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge 2018).
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By allowing wildlife hunting as the means of controlling animal population and thus maintaining balance in the selected ecosystem, one will create a sustainable environment in which endangered species will be preserved, while the ones that are in excess are controlled.
To analyze the problem of wildlife hunting in depth, one will need to view it from the perspective of the economic theory. To identify and study the implications of the existing regulations and the possibilities of improving them, the case of the San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge (SBP) in Northern California (NC) will be considered. Specifically, the program of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) and the economic factors that affect their implementation will be observed. It is expected that the outcomes of the analysis will inform the further choices in managing the issue of wildlife hunting in NC.
The SBP is located in the San Francisco Estuaryand consists of eight units, most of which are owned and controlled by the CDFW. However, some of its parts belong to private owners. Herein lies the primary problem of the SPB, which requires that both parties to whom the area belongs should supervise the process of managing wildlife hunting (San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge Climate Adaptation Plan 2016). Therefore, the further negotiation and agreement between the owners of the area will have to be conducted.
At present, the problem of illegal and unregulated hunting in wildlife refuges has gained particularly great significance due to the implications that it has on the environment and the economy of the state. Specifically, the lack of consistency in the existing guidelines for managing wildlife population affects both the species that inhabit the SPB and the people that live in the vicinity. The existing programs seem to address only one side of the argument, not to mention the lack of any other perspective apart from the environmental one. As a result, the general statement appears to be rather one-sided and lacking the needed perspective.
In addition, the lack of regulations and the prohibition of hunting in wildlife refuges in its entirety has led to the overpopulation of certain species and the introduction of imbalance to the ecosystem, with the ensuing threat to the rest of the NC wildlife. Particularly, options for hunting will need to be opened, with the possibility of controlling wildlife species and reducing the detrimental effects that invasive ones have on the development of the habitat and the ecosystem of SPB, in general.
Without the analysis of economic factors that affect the quality of animal care and the restoration of unique habitats, one will not be able to improve the existing situation. However, by considering some of the economic and financial constraints, as well as the cultural issues that contribute to the aggravation of the issue, one will be able to restore the park. Specifically, the damages that wild animals cause to the agriculture need to be taken into consideration when handling the issue and revisiting the key factors affecting the park.
In addition, the significance of agriculture, in general, as well as the detrimental effects that increased populations of some species have on it will be taken into consideration. It is critical for SPB owners to realize that the location has to be governed based on the principles of sustainability, which includes restricting the negative impacts of some of the SPB’s inhabitants.
History and Legal Framework
In retrospect, the unlimited opportunities for hunting and the absence of a relevant legislation have affected the North American wildlife disastrously, causing several species to become extinct and endangering a wide array of others (Serenari and Peterson 2018). For instance, the grey wolf, which is an endemic to the NC environment, requires a specific conservation strategy that prevents it from going extinct (California Department of Fish and Wildlife). The unceasing hunting that had been taking place in the BC environment has affected the local habitats and species, especially those endemic to the area, in a most deplorable way, causing many of them to go extinct, while others appeared to be on the verge of extinction (Peterson and Nelson 2017).
The SP area is not an exception to the specified phenomenon, wildlife preservation has been the issue of the critical concern in the designated area over the years of its existence. Specifically, the influence of people’s activities on SPB has been profound and quite harmful, with contamination rates rising consistently (Serenari and Peterson 2018). Furthermore, the process of conversing wildlife habitats to agricultural facilities has had its toll on the endemic species of the area, causing numerous instances of wildlife species extinction. Therefore, the current state of the SPB area can be described as critical.
It would be wrong to declare that no actions have been taken to address the specified concern. Quite the contrary, several regulations prohibiting hunting wildlife have been issued over the past few decades, including the restriction of hunting in the SPB area, have been issued. The identified regulations have set very rigid and firm boundaries in regard to the preservation of wildlife and were clearly designed in good faith. However, the implications of the specified standards were not contemplated properly, which led to the development of issues associated with invasive species and the changes in the natural habitat (Southern Highlands Reserve 2018). Therefore, the existing approach toward sustaining the SPB needs to be redesigned toward a more sensible framework that would allow a positive shift.
However, the specified measures coexist with the current approach toward permitting hunting in wildlife refuges at specific hours. For instance, the hunting regulations that are currently enacted in the SPB area ensure that hunting ducks is allowed on the territory of the refuge for the people that have a California hunting license, a Federal Duck Stamp, a Harvest Information Program (HIP) Validation, and an identification card (San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge 2018). Therefore, it would not be an understatement to claim that the recent regulations in regard to hunting have been rather inconsistent at SPB.
Economic Analysis: Exploring the Problem
In order to disentangle the existing set of problems at SPB, one will need to study not only environmental but also economic factors that have affected the situation. Furthermore, the financial and political aspects of the problem will have to be addressed as well. Specifically, the concern of managing and allocating resources properly should be given attention along with the focus on changing the existing policies concerning hunting. Moreover, the specified process should start with a sociocultural perspective and a change in people’s perception of wildlife preservation. For instance, one will need to introduce the people that are interested in hunting wildlife to the concepts of
From the economic perspective, it would be erroneous to label all actions that have been taken to change the SPB environment as strictly detrimental to the wildlife. For instance, farming activities that have been taking place in the SPB setting and revolving around the preservation of the wetland area have had a positive effect. Particularly, some of the unique habitats of the SPB environment have been preserved successfully, including the wetlands mentioned above and native grasslands (San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge 2018). Therefore, supporting some of the initiatives that have been undertaken in the SOB context by the CN state authorities is necessary since it will allow restoring the wildlife of the area.
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Moreover, one will need to keep in mind that the effects of hunting invasive species in wildlife refuges contribute to a rapid boost in the economic growth rates. Specifically, the introduction of a regulation that will enable people to hunt pervasive species will lead to the creation of numerous job openings in the specified setting. The introduction of additional job opportunities, in turn, will lead to a gradual rise in the economic performance of local organizations, as well as household income rates of the area residents (Dinets 2015). As a result, additional financial resources for protecting the wildlife that faces the threat of extinction in SPB will be built.
Therefore, the issue under analysis is a graphic example of the tragedy of the commons. Although the current regulations regarding wildlife hunting could be seen as sensible at first glance, they appear to be completely detrimental to the environment upon closer scrutiny. The tragedy of the commons manifests itself in the lack of a sustainable approach toward the existing hunting regulations and the propensity toward allowing hunting without any regard for the species that it affects. While the general rule of thumb used at SPB seems legitimate and serves to identify the activities that are downright harmful to the habitat and the species that live in it, one should also consider the economic factors that shape the specified setting.
Nonetheless, even with the current approach toward managing the instances of wildlife hunting, the NC authorities misinterpret the specifics of the area and the context in which these regulations are taken. Particularly, it is critical to ensure that the populations of species that have a vastly negative effect on the rest of the SPB endemics and its habitat should be controlled respectively. The specified change can be taken by reconsidering the existing legal framework and shaping the focus of the economic strategy adopted by the local authorities (Schaul 2014).
In addition, the fact that the proposed solution will contribute to the creation of new job opportunities shows that it will maximize the potential of SPB and the utility of its current resources, thus contributing to a gradual economic growth and providing additional opportunities for changing the existing situation.
It should be borne in mind that abolishing hunting wildlife in the SBP setting will lead to a massive surge in job losses and the following economic downfall. Creating job opportunities that will create premises for monitoring the current status of wildlife, the number of species within each population, and other factors that determine hunting-related decisions, in turn, is a much more valid solution. In addition, it is critical to reconsider the current approach toward resource management. Since the mismanagement of the available assets lies at the core of the tragedy of commons, the rearrangement of the approaches toward using natural resources should be seen as the crucial step toward improving the existing situation.
Moreover, when considering a change in the current approach toward the hunting policies in the SPB setting, one should keep in mind the economic value of hunting. With the financial benefits that it will produce, the alteration to the existing regulations may assist in building a support system for the entire SPB. Furthermore, the application of the proposed strategy will entail a gradual change in the attitudes toward the idea of using natural resources and changing the existing habitats. It is expected that the suggested change will produce tangible results due to the focus on economic growth as one of the critical constituents of change. By encouraging economic improvements, one will receive financial income that can be used to manage the wildlife refuge more efficiently.
Policy Criticism and Recommendations
The policy adopted presently to be the SPB authorities could use a revision. As stressed above, the lack of understanding regarding the effects that hunting has on the changes in the target environment should be deemed as one of the key contributors to the development of the problem. While the existing framework is aimed at environmentalism and the relevant objectives, local authorities seem to overlook some of the effects that hunting wildlife has on the SPB environment. Specifically, it is important to take notice of the species that may affect the development of other inhabitants of the area negatively.
With the uncontrolled rise in the population of one of the species, significant difficulties are expected. Hunting, in turn, allows keeping the number of dominant species under control, thus producing the setting in which other species can thrive, and in which the SPB environment will remain sustainable.
The existing policy is clearly geared toward environmentalism and the preservation of species, which is an admittedly noble cause to pursue. However, in their endeavors at shielding the SPB environment from harm, the local authorities forget about the positive outcomes of wildlife hunting. Specifically, the fact that the identified activity also allows restricting the negative impact of dominant species on the rest of the wildlife remains neglected. The specified omission should not be left unattended; instead, one will have to recognize the economic and environmental advantages of the specified phenomenon, thus introducing changes to the existing regulation and offering wildlife hunting opportunities to limit the impact of the invasive species on the SPB setting.
When considering the possible changes that could be made to the current situation at SOB, one should mention alterations in the hunting policies with regard to economic factors. The hunting regulations that have been in existence over the past few years have only recently suffered serious changes geared toward environmentalism and preservation of species. However, they have been lacking the economic constituent that would help put the problem into a perspective and allow addressing it as a complex issue that requires an appropriate solution.
The introduction of hunting opportunities as the method of leveraging the existing natural resources, particularly, the species that can be deemed as either excessive and thus harmful or invasive and therefore affecting the SPB setting negatively. Since hunting contributes to the economy of California and particularly NC significantly, the specified activity needs to be encouraged in order to sustain the SOB, the species that inhabit it, and the local wildlife, in general (Kays et al. 2017). Therefore, a change toward providing additional opportunities for hunters and encouraging them to assist SOB in managing its wildlife will be needed.
Furthermore, in terms of the economic potential of SPB, one must mention that it can be used as an agricultural area, which is likely to produce a significant economic profit. A part of the financial resources that will be obtained in the course of managing the SPB lands will be used to sustain the wildlife and create the setting in which endangered species will be protected ad unique habitats will be restored and kept intact. Moreover, as previous examples have shown, economic activities in the SPB setting have proven to produce a positive impact on the environment, in general. Moreover, the arrangement of climate-related events and these of social media to build awareness among NC residents should be seen as critical steps toward the management of the current situation.
Among the key problems of the current policies, one should also address the concern regarding the promotion of sustainable use of resources. On the one hand, the present-day environmental trends in the policy toward environmentalism can be regarded as sympathetic toward the problems of resource allocation. Indeed, the problem of poaching and hunting wildlife has been the reason for continuous concern are SPB, and the current policies are aimed directly at presenting the specified issue. However, scrutinizing the issue closer, one will realize that local authorities overlook some of the economic implications of their choices.
Specifically, the fact that wildlife hunting will not only provide the tools for controlling wildlife population but also introduce an opportunity for numerous job options in the area is also overlooked at present. Indeed, with the change in the current regulations and the provision of opportunities for controlling the population of invasive species by offering people hunting options, one will make a significant difference in the economic situation. Particularly, job opportunities associated with consultations regarding hunting and the associated services will be provided.
Therefore, it is highly recommended to shape the current policies regarding hunting in the SPB wildlife setting so that hunters could assist in controlling the population of invasive species in the identified setting. The proposed steps will help retain the target environment sustainable and self-sufficient. It should be noted that the proposed changes will not imply the refutation of the current code of conduct in the SPB.
For instance, hunters will have to remain respectful toward the SPB code of conduct and ensure that they do not harm the environment in any way. Specifically, the people that will be given the permission to hunt invasive species in the area of SPB will be encouraged not to litter or smoke, as well as to reduce their impact on the well-being of the habitat and the species that live in it.
Despite years of endeavors at addressing the problem of habitat change and wildlife extinction, SOB is facing the same threat of its numerous species going extinct. While a range of environmental programs have been designed to help to sustain the existing environmental setting and support the species that are facing the threat of extinction, SPB remains under a critical threat. Therefore, the reconsideration of the existing policies toward hunting wildlife will need to occur with the following changes to the existing policies. Specifically, hunters will have to be instructed about targeting particular species that affect the SPB environment negatively due to the abnormal rise in their population.
Thus, species control will be introduced into the specified setting with the following improvement in the environmentalism levels and the overall positive change in the current situation regarding wildlife poaching and species extinction. The regulations that allow hunting a selected set of species based on the current status of wildlife in the SPB environment will require admittedly challenging changes. However, by fostering the concept of sustainability, environmental friendliness, and a critical analysis as the basis for decision-making, one will encourage a positive change.
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