WHEREAS, the military organizations of the United States introduced and left nonnative mammals, specifically, reindeer on St. Matthew Island and rats on Amchitka and Adak Islands, and abandoned thousands of structures and pieces of equipment on Amchitka, Attu, and other islands within the Aleutian National Wildlife Refuge during operations that began with World War II; and
WHEREAS, the introduced mammals, either as predators or as destroyers of vegetation, are harmful to native wildlife; and
WHEREAS, the military structures and material destroy the natural beauty and wilderness values and interfere with natural ecology of the islands; and
WHEREAS, the Department of Defense has accepted conservation responsibility by its statement: "Stewardship. The DOD, as an important occupier of Federal Lands, has an obligation to the American People to act responsibly and effectively in conservation management including the duty to restore, improve, . . . lands and waters under military control." (P. 2, heading III GENERAL POLICIES, paragraph A. Responsibility for: in Department of Defense Directive Number 5500.5, ASD (M), Subject: Natural Resources -Conservation and Management, (9 pages) dated 24 May 1965.); and
WHEREAS, the military organization has made no effort to remove the nonnative mammals or the debris;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the American Society of Mammalogists requests the Secretary of Defense to instruct the responsible authorities now and in the future to implement the appropriate parts of DOD Directive Number 5500.5 and to consult with and cooperate with the responsible National Wildlife Refuge officials of the U.S. Department of Interior prior to any future ingress to island refuges.