Will Coloradans Ban Mountain Lion Hunting at the Ballot Box This Fall?

Field and Stream 

Back in December, Colorado Parks & Wildlife (CPW) released five gray wolves on public land west of Denver. The widely-publicized release took place amid heavy opposition from hunters and conservation groups because it had been mandated by a narrowly-passed ballot initiative four years earlier. Now, Colorado’s voting public is on the cusp of considering yet another controversial wildlife-related ballot referendum.

The ballot initiative that led to December’s wolf release, known as Proposition 114, was a shining example of what conservation-minded hunters often decry as “ballot box biology.” It put a critical wildlife management decision—something typically hashed out through rigorous scientific procedures by state and federal biologists—into the hands of everyday voters. Now that the initiative is law, CPW must release up to 50 wolves onto the state’s West Slope over the next 3 to 5 years.