This letter was written by a man everyone in Tofino reveres, Adrian Dorst – well-known photographer and artist.
We admire his courage in speaking out when so many of us have remained silent.
It was address to the editor of a local paper The Westerly.
If the information I have is correct, a total of four wolves were shot dead in Tofino recently, not just the two found in the dumpster.
How could this happen in a village that attracts people from around the world for nature and wildlife viewing? Old prejudices and old mindsets, it appears, are still with us.
Why do tourists come to Tofino to view wildlife? Because in most of the rest of the world, in places where bears and wolves used to live, they were long ago shot into extinction by people with this same mindset.
On a number of occasions I have personally had the pleasure of providing visitors to our fair coast their first glimpse of a wolf, and to say that these people were thrilled is an understatement. It was the highlight of the trip for all of them.
So, I find it exceedingly ironic that, as I understand it, two of the wolves were shot by a Tofino tour operator who makes a living transporting tourists to view bears and wolves. Talk about shortsighted.
Yes, I understand, wolves had killed the family pet some days earlier, but this could have been prevented by keeping the dog safely indoors at night where all small dogs belong.
And was the slaying of the wolves, days after the event, really necessary or was it purely an act of revenge?
Living as we do, on the edge of the wilderness, I can understand there may be rare occasions when such drastic action as shooting a bear, wolf, or cougar is necessary, but far too often these animals are shot due to our own negligence or because someone with an old prejudice and an itchy trigger finger is ready to do the deed.
To point out the obvious, eradicating wildlife is not compatible with wildlife viewing.
Adrian Dorst, Tofino