The animal rights movement largely focuses on protecting species whose suffering is most visible to humans, such as pets, livestock, and captive mammals. Yet, we do not observe how unsustainable land development and fishing practices are harming many species of wildlife and sea creatures. Fish and wildlife populations have recently suffered staggering losses, and they stand to lose far more. This Article proposes a new legal approach to protect these currently overlooked creatures. I suggest extending property rights to animals, which would allow them to own land, water, and natural resources. Human trustees would manage animal-owned trusts managed at the ecosystem level-a structure that fits within existing legal institutions. Although admittedly radical, an animal property rights regime would create tremendous gains for imperiled species with relatively few costs to humans.
Animal Property Rights,
U. Colo. L. Rev.
Available at: https://scholar.law.colorado.edu/lawreview/vol89/iss3/3