Keywords:Wildlife Act – ss. 48, 51, 60(1); guide outfitter licence; quota; bull moose; resident and non-resident hunter allocation; unfairness; cow/calf ratio and projected population
Robert Fontana appealed the decision of the Regional Manager to issue him a quota of four bull moose for 2003 and a three-year allocation of six bull moose; he sought an increase in his three-year allocation to nine bull moose.
The share of bull moose allocated to non-resident hunters in the Kootenay region had increased in the current three-year allocation -from 85% resident/15% non-resident to an 80/20 split. Mr. Fontana submitted that the allocation to his guide outfitter operation should be increased proportionately, given an abundance of moose in his area. Mr. Fontana further argued that the Ministry generally operates in a manner that is not fair, equitable or timely with regard to quota allocation for guide outfitters.
The Board considered Mr. Fontana’s submission that his quota should be increased because of the change in the resident/non-resident ratio and the size of the moose population in his area compared to other guide areas. The Board also considered the Ministry’s testimony that, while there may be a healthy moose population in that Management Unit, the current cow/calf ratio indicates a likely decrease in the moose population. The Board found that an increase in quota and allocation for this Management Unit would be detrimental to the moose population.
The Board also found that the distribution of allocation and quota requested by Mr. Fontana would result in a number of other guide outfitters having their allocation reduced to zero, which would be harmful to the guiding industry as a whole.
The Board was not provided with any evidence of unfairness on the part of the Ministry and made no findings with regard to this allegation by Mr. Fontana.
The Board confirmed the decision of the Regional Manager and dismissed the appeal.