In March of this year, Lobo Marley, an association “Citizens for Wolf and the Rural World”, participated anonymously in the auction to acquire Iberian wolf hunting licenses in the Sierra de la Culebra, in order to bid for the lives of these wolves, the association asked its followers on their social networks to make financial contributions through a crowdfunding platform, which included a total of 769 people and over $ 10,000 was raised in just one month.

Following this historic action, the association paid the cost and acquired the hunting rights, however the mood in the region was very heated, beginning with evasive actions and followed by arrogance, including denial of the receipt of documents and finally a flat refusal from José Angel Arranz, Director for the Environment for the Council, to allow Lobo Marley to receive the hunting rights that they had acquired and with it any hopes of safe guarding any future execution of these two Iberian wolf.  According to Luis Miguel Domínguez, the president of Lobo Marley ¨the most important thing this situation highlights is that the Council closes the door to a solution and denies the sentiment and wish of a portion of Spanish society that wants the Iberian Wolf in Zamora and all of Spain, alive and not just a hunting trophy.”

The Council has lost a historic opportunity to make things evolve in a different direction and they have gone back to the inertia and unintellectual state that put the wolf against the sword and on the wall and it has put them at odds with the philosophy and interests of those who see a prosperous future of ecotourism in the region.
Lobo Marley wants to promote the wolf and its image as a socioeconomic resource that promotes rural development, sponsor scientific research on the biology, ecology and behavior of the wolf and public outreach.

Today, Lobo Marley has a open Change.org with nearly 120,000 signatures to prevent the Council of Castilla y León as well as Asturias from ending the lives of more than 190 wolves (change.org/190lobos) which represents approximately 10% of  the Iberian wolf population. These actions are part of the long-term aim of the association is putting conservation at the heart of improving the quality of life for everybody.

 

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Karin Eckhard is an international sustainable tourism expert based in Madrid, Spain

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