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The goal of this website is to expose the incorrect statements, false claims, and outright lies made by animal rights groups like Project Coyote, the Humane Society of the U.S. its members, and some of its supporters. Wherever possible we will provide backup documentation on each of our statements. Its our first priority to provide you with the facts.
The urban coyote debate has been complicated by animal rights groups opposed to any lethal control. These groups often intentionally confuse the public by putting out false and misleading information about coyote behavior and biology, wildlife management, hunting and the role predators play in our environment.
Project Coyote Founder and Executive Director, Camilla Fox is a dedicated animal rights activist. Ms Fox has been giving a voice to the voiceless for decades; shouldn’t that voice reflect sincerity and integrity? I would say yes, especially if you're claiming the activity of those you disagree with as: “ethically repugnant, morally bankrupt, and ecologically indefensible.”
Ms. Fox' father Michael Fox was a former Vice President of the Humane Society of the U.S. and shares an extreme view on animal welfare HERE. These same extreme views seem to be shared by Camilla. Animal Rights Activist Marc Bekoff who wrote "The Encyclopedia of Animal Rights and Animal Welfare" who was mentored by Michael Fox also babysat Camilla Fox, sent an email commenting on how Camilla Fox said "don't eat animals, don't eat animals." at the age of three.
Children are naive, trusting, impressionable and are easily manipulated. On top of that children are naturally attracted to animals. So its no surprise Fox has made it an important part of her strategy to include children as part of her activism to emotionally manipulate the public.. HERE and HERE
Ms. Fox may have learned her extreme views on animal activism from her father but more importantly, Fox does NOT have a background in science. Fox graduated Magna Cum Laude from Boston University where she earned a Bachelor of Arts majoring in English with a minor in Women's Studies HERE. Fox's Masters degree in Environmental Studies and Sustainability from Prescott College in Arizona has little to do with science and more to do with learning to start a non profit activist group. Just as interesting, Fox's Masters degree is a 36 unit online degree. SOURCE
Considering her lack of scientific background and her extreme views on animal activism, municipalities and policy makers should be aware of the unintended consequences that come with taking advice from those with ideologies opposed to wildlife management.
The Marin Livestock Protection Plan is a prime example of the unintended consequences of listening to groups like Project Coyote.
The most recent study reviewing the Marin Livestock Protection Program after 15 years of implementation concluded: "the Livestock Protection Program has led to changes that are detrimental to both ranchers and wildlife of Marin County." Hardly "A non lethal model for coexistence" as claimed by Project Coyote Executive Director Camilla Fox.
More coyotes die, more ranchers are forced out of the sheep industry. Hardly the "model of coexistence" as claimed.
Although the Marin program has been claimed a model plan for coexistence, multiple biologists have pointed out several issues with the plan. Dr. Stephanie Larson, UC Cooperative Extension, Sonoma County Director points out some of these issues VIDEO
The Marin County Non Lethal Livestock Protection program removed USDA's Wildlife Services. No longer having professional wildlife specialists to focus on removing offending animals, ranchers were left no other options for predator control leading to the indiscriminate killing of coyotes by ranchers to protect their livestock. Dr. Stephanie Larson has estimated coyote deaths increased 100%
The Marin program does not have the participation of all sheep ranchers and does not track livestock lost to predators by ranchers who are not enrolled in the program. This creates an incomplete data set giving the false impression livestock predation by coyotes has decreased.
The number of sheep producers in Marin County have decreased due to excessive sheep loss.
Initially the indemnification program (reimbursements for livestock loss) only reimbursed up to 5% of verified loss. Livestock losses increased beyond Marin County's ability to pay forcing the county to discontinue the indemnification program within three years (2012). The program has since received funding and may resume again starting July 31,2017. LETTER
After ballot initiative Proposition 4 passed in 1998, Fox formed the Marin Coalition for California Wildlife with the goal of ending Marin counties contract with USDA’s Wildlife Services in favor of a “county operated predator management program” which advocated to “include all the lethal control techniques available to ranchers." HERE. That's right! Fox and the Marin Coalition for Wildlife advocated Marin County to operate its own lethal predator control program.
In order to manipulate the public and gain support to remove the USDA from conducting predator control in Marin County, Fox wrote an opinion article in the Marin Independent Journal. Without any proof, Fox claimed Marin County hired a trapper who employed illegal methods of animal control:"conibear kill traps and deadly poisons." These methods were made illegal by the passage of prop 4 months before this letter was written. LINK Fox already knew these methods were illegal; Fox was employed by the Animal Protection Institute, the same organization who financially backed the voter initiative banning body gripping traps and poisons. HERE Marin County Agricultural Commissioner Stacey Carlson wrote a letter to the Marin County Board of Supervisors July 20, 1999 writing "the program in Marin has been much maligned by animal activists without cause. USDA does not use kill traps, poisons, leg hold traps nor do they perform denning as activists have portrayed." "The animal protection representatives have taken the non-consensus approach supplying misinformation to the public" "Statistics verify that very few animals are taken in West Marin per year, certainly much less than are killed by vehicles on roads in the urban corridor, and insignificant compared to the domestic animals euthanized by the Humane Society." SOURCE
However, the fact is Mary Paglieri, Founder and Director of the Little Blue Society, was the author responsible for Marin’s non lethal plan. Mary's plan called for the use of “Guardian Sheppard” dogs,” improved fencing” and “public outreach.” Camilla Fox and the Marin Coalition for California Wildlife falsely take credit for this project even to the point of claiming it as THEIR "pilot project." You can find the truth HERE SOURCE (page 10, paragraph 3)
Need further proof Mary Paglieri was the originator of the Marin County Non-lethal Program?
In an email from Marin County Agriculture Commissioner Stacy Carlsen to Mary Paglieri:
From: "Carlsen, Stacy" <SCarlsen@marincounty.org>
Date: Sunday, May 6, 2012 at 10:30 PM
To: Mary Paglieri <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: MODEL NONLETHAL PREDATOR MANAGEMENT PROGRAM
Mary: I will never forget your systematic calm approach and progressive attitude about a balanced approach to agricultural conflicts. In the heat of conflict it was difficult to narrow in recognition for support. You were in front of all and gracious. In retrospect you did not receive the recognition deserving for the effort; I apologize. You were ahead of your time, in fact and wisdom. I am only hoping we could discuss how to make efforts better for others stuggling with the difficult transition. If only I knew!
I am availble to assist you, with a clear awareness of where we both started.
Let me know how I can help- speaking to you our your support team would be my pleasure- do they have a sense of humor?
Sent from my iPhone
On Earth Day, 2015, Fox shamelessly accepted the Conservationist of the Year award from the John Muir Association based on several false claims including the “Marin County Livestock & Wildlife Protection Program.” HERE
Fox takes credit for a non lethal program she did not create while calling those who disagree with her “morally bankrupt?”
It is time for Camilla Fox to be held accountable for her dishonesty and her slandering of hard working, honest members of the community who support conservation based on science, not lies.
In 2006, Fox was awarded the Christine Stevens Wildlife award which "supported the development of non-lethal solutions to wildlife managemnt" At one pont, Fox took credit for creating the coalition that created the Marin County Non Lethal Livestock Protection Plan HERE HERE HERE
There are two problems with this; 1) Mary Paglieri of The Little Blue Society created the original non lethal plan for Marin County which included keeping USDA Wildlife Specialists and 2) Fox is no longer taking credit for the Marin plan after Dr. Stephanie Larson, the County Director of Livestock Range Management found serious deficiencies in the plan, indicating the plan is not likely the model for coexistence as Fox continues to claim.
The Marin County Livestock Protection Plan is severely flawed. The plan has not solved any problems and has only made life worse for ranchers, taxpayers and coyotes.
The data Marin County records for sheep loss does not include sheep producers who are not participating in the plan. One producer tells of having lost approximately 150 lambs annually, primarily to coyotes, in FY 2003/04 and FY 2004/05. Thus, this one producer’s unreported losses appear be equivalent to the total losses of all reporting program participants combined.
There are fewer sheep producers resulting in more poultry and beef/dairy producers.
Producers are dissatisfied with the program
Costs do not cover expenses of non lethal tools
Producers want Wildlife Specialists from the USDA back.
More coyotes are taken and non target takes is unknown after
removing USDA Wildlife Specialists SOURCE
The well meaning conservation organization John Muir Association was misled regarding the accomplishments of Ms. Fox and were advised of the truth prior to their award presentation in 2016. Unfortunately, the John Muir Association decided to give Camilla Fox the Conservationist of The Year award in part for her role in the Marin County Livestock Protection Plan despite the fact more coyotes die as a result of removing USDA trappers that focused their efforts on offending animals. VIDEO
Camilla Fox claims to have "closed the loophole" in predator hunting contests. A letter from the California Department of Fish & Wildlife explained their decision a simple “clarifying” of the Fish & Game Code. LETTER
Project Coyote claimed they were a 501(c)3 non profit organization in court documents. Project Coyote is actually a "project" of Earth Island Institute. Court Docs A simple search of the IRS Exempt Organization website will verify this HERE. Earth Island Institute provides vital infrastructure which includes payroll and and grant writing. This relationship also provides a way for Project Coyote to conceal their income and expenses from the public.
One does not have to look far to find examples of the anti-hunting, animal rights views of Camilla Fox. In a letter, Fox allegedly penned for North American Hunter magazine titled "The Case Against Sport Hunting." HERE Fox is critical of hunting while providing no source information to support her claims. We have reached out to North American Hunter magazine to confirm this but have not received a response.
Prop 4, the California ban on leghold trapping and use of compound 1080. In a mailing to voters, animal welfare proponents of Proposition 4 argued that sodium fluoroacetate caused "cruel, unnecessary deaths" and "immense suffering in its victims," and called padded leghold traps and poisons "indiscriminate and cruel." However, a recent study from Australia, where sodium fluoroacetate is widely used to control introduced mammal pests, concluded that pain is not associated with fluoroacetate poisoning (Gregory 1996); furthermore, USDA and UC Berkeley research conducted at Hopland Research and Extension Center during the 1990s found that in more than 150 coyote captures with leg-hold traps, the incidence of injury and death was less than 5%. HERE