Disagreements were sparked earlier this week between conservationists and animal protection groups over Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Lin Tai-hua’s (林岱樺) proposed amendments to the Wildlife Conservation Act (野生動物保育法) to deal with the growing number of stray dogs in national parks.
Conservationists said strays should be removed from parks instead of being cared for by staff, saying that they pose a threat to indigenous animals, while animal protection groups criticized the solution as illogical and said it would not solve the issue.
Animal rights advocate Huang Tai-shan (黃泰山) said parks should set aside fenced-in land for the strays, calling on parks to neuter and feed the dogs as the only humane solution.
Strays damage the environment significantly less than humans who are also foreign to parks, he said.
“If we follow the conservationists’ logic that foreign animals should be removed from parks, then we should start with people,” Huang said.
It would also be impossible to remove strays, since there would be no place to take them, he said, adding that starving dogs would trigger their instinct to hunt, thereby making them a threat to wildlife.
“We [animal rights advocates] want strays to show up in national parks even less than conservationists do,” Huang said, adding that providing dogs with an adequately large space of their own would keep wildlife safe and prevent the dogs from attacking each other.
Huang said only minimal fixtures would need to be installed so they could have shelter from strong wind and rain.
“If the dogs are fed regularly, then they can continue to live as strays and would eventually die of natural causes,” he said.
Huang said the parks are definitely able to provide sufficient land for this purpose, adding that it is up to park authorities to decide whether they are willing to do so.
Taipei City Councilor Wang Hao (王浩) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Monday called for security improvements to the MRT, as fare evasion has increased more than 13-fold on the metropolitan railway system over the past five years. Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) has spoken out against fare evasion and other contraventions of MRT regulations, but since he took office in 2015 the number of contraventions has more than doubled, Wang said, adding that there were 537 cases in 2015 compared with 959 last year. A video was posted to YouTube in June showing people how to evade paying a fare,
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Yuchi Township (魚池) fishers have appealed to the Nantou County Government for help in dealing with an invasive fish species in Sun Moon Lake (日月潭), where it has devastated the local ecosystem. Fishers at Sun Moon Lake have been using electrofishing in an attempt to eliminate the giant snakehead fish — found in Africa and Southeast Asia — but they have struggled to keep up with the growing population of the species, which breeds during September and October, the county government said on Monday. The county has contacted researchers at National Tsing Hua University, saying it hoped they could come up