New York—State Senator Liz Krueger today pressed Majority Leader Joe Bruno to bring (S.784/A.2612) to the floor of the Senate for debate and a full vote. The legislation, which would ban canned hunts in New York, remains stalled in committee with just 4 days left in session.
"Canned hunts are cruel," Krueger said. "These are animals that have not just been taken out of their element and placed in cages from which they can't escape, but often they have been trained to trust humans and are brutalized and victimized as a result. Many are bound or sedated in order to further inhibit their survival abilities. This practice is not even considered hunting by the vast majority of hunters, it is torture and cowardice."
"Fair chase" a philosophy central to gamesmen and women, does not exist in canned hunts, violating the ethical code of hunting. A 2003 survey of hunters by Field & Stream Magazine found that just 12% of hunters nationwide endorsed hunting in this manner.
The bill specifically prohibits non-native big game animals from being hunted in a fenced-in area from which there is no means for their escape. Federal and state laws currently offer protections for endangered, threatened and many indigenous animals. But a lack of specific prohibitions allows a wide range of animals, including certain species of bear, llama, zebra and ram to be killed in this manner.
"The support is there in both the Senate and the Assembly, and both houses have passed it in previous sessions. However, inexplicably, former Governor George Pataki vetoed it. This year we have a new Governor, who I believe will support this legislation and finally get this horrific practice outlawed. The Assembly has already done their part, now it is my hope that Senator Bruno again this year moves the bill out of committee and brings it to the floor of the Senate for a full vote before this session ends," Krueger explained.
"This is a bill that lifelong hunters and animal rights activists agree upon because canned hunts are cruel and unsportsmanlike. Nearly 20 states have already banned this disturbing practice—New York can be next," Krueger concluded.