James Hetfield, a nine Grammy award winner, and lead vocalist for the heavy metal band Metallica, will be the narrator for the eight-episode series “The Hunt” – a documentary on bear hunts on Kodiak Island.
Although Hetfield seems like an unlikely choice in the role as narrator for a hunting documentary, it actually suits him. The musician describes himself as an enthusiastic outdoorsman with a passion for hunting.
The Kodiak bear, also known as the Kodiak brown bear, or the Alaskan grizzly bear, occupies the islands of the Kodiak Archipelago in South-Western Alaska. They are the largest subspecies of brown bear and one of the two largest members of the bear family, the other being the polar bear.
Bear hunting enthusiasts are drawn to Alaska’s Kodiak Island, because it is home to some of the world’s largest brown bears. The challenge of conquering and killing such powerful creatures brings these hunters pride in their accomplishments.
According to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, hunters harvest about one hundred and eighty bears every year, with over seventy percent being males. They claim that by killing many of the males, they are controlling the bear population and are playing a vital role in preserving the ecological balance on the island.
It seems that the Alaska Department of Fish and Game does not think that nature can keep the ecological system in balance on its own, therefore, it is necessary to kill the fathers of baby cubs and use them for food and trophies.
“While getting a bear is no easy task, most hunters still value time-honored traditions by hunting with bow-and-arrow, black powder single-shot rifles, and/or use the minimum amount of technology possible,” History stated in its press release. “Honoring the animal is paramount and taught to all hunters who come to the island. Hunters have an ethical and legal responsibility to strive for clean kills that is taken very seriously. There are pages of stringent regulations they must follow that ensure respect for the animal and the land.”
If killing someone is honouring and respecting them, and destroying creatures that have as much right to freedom, justice and life as humans is considered humane and ethical, it is no wonder there is so much violence in this world.
Kodiak bears spend a lot less time and energy trying to capture and kill prey, than do their human adversaries. In fact, they avoid it as much as possible. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game explains in their fact sheet that “Kodiak bears are often touted as the world’s largest land carnivore (meat eaters), they are really omnivores (using a variety of foods). They actually spend more time eating grass, plants and berries than meat. Fish are an important part of their diets, but few Kodiak bears expend the time or effort necessary to chase and kill mammals.”
If anyone is interested in watching these magnificent bears being shot and killed by hunters, while cameras capture and exploit their deaths for entertainment, then you can watch the premiere of “The Hunt” on History on Sunday, June 8 at 10 p.m. WT/PT.
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