Hogs replacing hogs are still hogs

  Dear HCN,


Re: "Fun-hogs to replace cows in a Utah monument" (HCN, 2/1/99), give us a break. Give us the real story. The Escalante, a lone remnant of Glen Canyon, is a sensitive and disastrously disturbed river system. It is a central riparian corridor for wildlife, but at present it is barely alive. It flows through national forest lands, the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, and the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, so it is an "interagency problem." This river has been battered nearly to death over the last 150 years, and nobody knows exactly what it was like before the most recent human disturbances. But it can be something better.


A "conservation deal" trading out grazing allotments is fine, and the Grand Canyon Trust should be praised. Moving the cows out may be a good first step toward restoration of the river system, but one wonders what is being protected if this is the only management decision. If the public lets it only become a first step to filling the canyons with recreational fun-hogs, the river loses.





Michael Cohen


Cedar City, Utah


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