Alberta’s attempt to boost caribou numbers by killing wolves is an inhumane approach that fails to target the root of the problem—the extractivist industries—says a group of scientists.

Explaining how the wolves came to be seen as the problem, Kaleigh Rogers writes at Vice:

Controversy erupted in November following the publication of an analysis in the Canadian Journal of Zoology, which, as CBC News reported at the time, assessed

The wolf killing managed to keep the caribou population stable, but was just buying time for the caribou, the study found. As Emma Marris wrote in the journal Nature, the caribou population did not show an increase. “Such an increase would require placing new limits on industrial development in Alberta, a conclusion that adds fuel to an ongoing debate about the ecological consequences of human activity in the boreal forest,” she wrote of the study.

Scientists from the Raincoast Conservation Foundation and the Universities of Saskatchewan and Victoria say the study puts the spotlight on wolf-killing methods considered inhumane by the Canadian Council of Animal Care (CCAC).