STATE SENATE News:
SANTA FE — The New Mexico Senate has passed Senate Bill 268, sponsored by Sen. Jeff Steinborn (D-Las Cruces) and Sen. Mark Moores (R-Albuquerque), to ban coyote killing contests by a 26-15 vote.
“Our wildlife is part of what makes the Land of Enchantment special, and the fact that these thrill-killing contests continue to be held in New Mexico is unacceptable,” Sen. Steinborn said.
Senate Bill 268 previously passed the Senate Conservation Committee by a 6-3 vote, the Senate Judiciary Committee 7-2, and after yesterday’s Senate floor vote now heads to the House, giving New Mexico a chance to be the first state in the country to pass a law banning this brutal practice.
“The significant majority of New Mexican voters, more than a two-to-one margin, find coyote killing contests abhorrent. These contest do nothing to attract business or tourism to the state, and are proven to be counterproductive to preventing livestock depredation,” said Jessica Johnson, Chief Legislative Officer for Animal Protection Voters.
The bill would ban coyote killing competitions in which participants compete for entertainment, cash, guns and other prizes by attempting to kill the most, largest, and smallest coyotes over a short period of time.
Killing contests happen frequently across private and public lands in New Mexico, violating fair-chase hunting values and the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation, and damaging our rural economy by spurring compensatory breeding after coyote populations are decimated. Scientific studies have proven that mass indiscriminate killing disrupts pack structures, leading to increased breeding and larger litters, making coyotes more likely to attack livestock to feed their young.
According to a December 2016 poll conducted by Third Eye Strategies, a majority of New Mexican voters oppose coyote killing contests, in both rural and urban areas of the state.