April 27, 2010
The proposed deterrence guidelines include 2 levels:
(1) Passive deterrence measures these are measures intended to prevent polar bears from gaining access to property or people. They include:
(2) Preventive deterrence measures these are measures intended to dissuade a polar bear from initiating an interaction with property or people. These are:
In proposing these guidelines the Service notes that it is mindful of the inherent risks to humans associated with the act of deterring a large carnivore such as the polar bear, as well the MMPA's intent that acceptable acts of deterrence are those that safely deter but do not result in death or serious injury. Therefore, these guidelines are benign in nature. While some parties may believe they do not go far enough, we do not believe more active deterrence measures are appropriate for these guidelines.
Independent of these proposed deterrence guidelines, and under a separate provision of the Marine Mammal Protection Act, the Service does authorize active hazing measures that may be taken to stop bear activity patterns or to remove an individual animal from areas of human populations or work environs. In addition, the lethal taking of a polar bear in defense of life (but not property) is an exempted action under the MMPA.
The proposed deterrence guidelines would serve to complement such authorized activities and not supersede them.
The Federal Register notice detailing these proposed guidelines will be published on April 26. We will consider comments on the proposed guidelines that are received on or before May 26, 2010. You may submit comments by one of the following methods:
Comments will be posted on http://www.regulations.gov. This generally means that any personal information you provide will be posted.
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