The country’s most influential newspaper has weighed in on the mixed message of the wolf delisting.  Mixed News for Wolves

 
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About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University with specialties in natural resource politics, public opinion, interest groups, political parties, voting and elections. Aside from academic publications, he is author or co-author of three hiking/backpacking guides, and he is President of the Western Watersheds Project.

16 Responses to New York Times editorial: Mixed News for Wolves

  1. avatar Mark Hendershott says:

    Here’s an international slant on the wolf reintroduction issue:

    http://environment.guardian.co.uk/conservation/story/0,,2002471,00.html

  2. avatar kt says:

    It’s great to see this voice of sanity and reason interjected into the Wolf saga.

    When a national newspaper pays attention, it shows that the number of wolves in Idaho -and their impending slaughter – is much more than an issue to be slugged out in a few backwards states in the West.

    It is instead an American public lands and wildlife issue that affects 300 million people.

    The Idaho Fish and Game Press Conference on Monday made clear that it was ranchers that were driving intolerance for wolves in the areas where they were to be “knocked down”, with areas specifically named with livestock “conflicts” being McCall, Cascade, East of Boise, Danskins, Smokies, Copper Basin.

    There is, no matter how you cut it, an overwhelming BLM and Forest Service public land nexus in any management decisions or planning affecting wolves in Idaho.

    Yet, at the Fish and Game news conference, when a question was asked about why they weren’t considering reducing conflicts on public lands, no consideration was given to removing publicly subsidized livestock from these conflict areas – only of tinkering with turnout times, working with “operators”, etc.

    Bottom line: Fish and Game is going to use hunters to kill wolves for – what – a hundred or so mostly large public lands livestock permittees? And THAT is why the follow-up IDFG Press Release yesterday is so offensive, and shows there is no hope of this process, if de-listing occurs, not being poisoned in Idaho by the livestock industry. The Press Release speaks of IDFG planing to work with SELECT groups to develop a plan that is to be based largely on the old deeply flawed 100 wolf plan that was developed by the the same SELECT cattle and sheep interests that will poison any spin-off.

    See http://wolves.wordpress.com/2007/01/29/wolf-recovery-should-not-be-over/#comments

    And the Wolf Plan PDF and list of industry preparers being discussed here over the past several days. Hoffman, Noh, Wheeler, etc.

    And, of course, this all will play out accompanied by the Karl Rove playbook ploy of the escalating whine of the “sportsmen” -for-hate-type groups.

  3. avatar Rick Hammel says:

    This is a start. The Denver Post ran an article yesterday, based off the press release. unlike the Post the Times showed some of the negative aspects of delisting in the NRM DPS. Now we have to see to it that the rest of the Nation knows and understands the negativity of delisting at this time.

    Defenders just started a campaign aimed at Sec. Kempthorne. The target is 25000 responses. At the time i sent in my response, there were 18000+. Will it work? For sure it will clog up Interior’s system a bit.

    It looks as though the national conservation groups are moving forward, trying to get comments generated. I am going to wait for a couple of weeks and see what more issues arise that I have not thought about.

  4. avatar Kim says:

    it did clog up there data base i think last night, i sent mine in and got a non deliverable due to what sounded like the data space was full,, there were only 8-9 thousand at that time,,guess i will givie it another go,,,

  5. avatar Andy T says:

    So Copper Basin is a point of great conflict?

    I think that’s true. There is far too much livestock abuse in Copper Basin.

    The number of cattle need to be reduced ASAP, and it’s time conservation interests make it an issue that there’s an exotic animal running amuck there — the cow.

    I was there a couple years ago in late August. Some bow hunters drove up at to check things out (Burnt Creek I think). It was a week before the bow hunt started. They looked around in disgust at all the cow shit and churned mud, and drove away swearing.

  6. avatar GW says:

    I agree that Copper Basin is completely over ran by cattle. They have trashed the land in that basin, and even above on some of the peaks such as big black dome they roam up to about 10,000 feet. It’s gotten to the point where the Idaho Fish and Game need to start allowing permits to hunt them. They are out of control, and their numbers are too high. Same with sheep. We need permits to hunt sheep. I don’t care if ranchers “own” them or not. They are on public land, so let the hunting begin. I think a limit of 10 per day is reasonable.

  7. avatar Rob-S says:

    Like you GW, I can not wait until we can hunt wolves.

  8. avatar Warren says:

    Eh, GW was talking about hunting livestock Rob.

  9. avatar GW says:

    Well, what can you expect from an anti-wolf, tame-the-wilderness-because-i’m-a-coward nitwit? They usually have low reading comprehension skills.

  10. avatar Jordan says:

    Rob S – so what’s in killing a wolf that you so crave? Will it make up for the disappointment when you didn’t get to star as one of the three little pigs in 1st grade (with apologies to pigs who are intelligent creatures)? Just curious on what motivates a wolf killer to be like yourself.

  11. avatar Jordan says:

    Rick & Kim – I sent in a response to Dirk today as well. Unfortunately, I doubt it will help because he wouldn’t know a badger from a wolf and could care less about anything except preening in the mirror.

  12. avatar Rob-S says:

    Jordan – Where did I say anything about me killing a wolf. I do not crave killing. I comment on these threads because I have worked on livestock ranches and have supported the livestock industry. In case you have not noticed, all the wolf advocates can do is bad mouth the livestock industry practices instead of going out and making a real impact. They let their emotions drive them and get in the way of the economics of supporting businesses that can bring jobs to small rural communities at the saving of the wolf. They are use this as their political agenda to keep the wolves from being killed because of livestock and wolf conflicts.

  13. avatar GW says:

    The livestock industry is a sham, and it needs seriously toned down in central Idaho. Is that all Idaho should be about? Catering to a bunch of welfare ranchers? Hundreds of thousands of sheep have free range throughout the smoky, pioneer and boulder mountains every year. The impact they do to the land is fairly bad. They are nothing more than land maggots, and the devastation that the thousands of these sheep cause to areas is quite extensive. They run through an area and tear up all the sage brush, crap every foot on the land, and then completely ruin water sources from their fecal matter being everywhere. Just so people can have wool socks? The sheep are reason enough to have 10,000 wolves roaming these mountains.

  14. avatar Rob-S says:

    Good luck on your 10000 wolves GW. You need to be a politician to get things changed. Speak to your senator or congressman. Heck! Why not the President of the U.S. I hear you but cannot do anything for you. All I hear is folks like you complaining and not doing anything about it.

  15. avatar Slow Elk Poacher says:

    You don’t always have to be a politician to get jobs done, Rob. Usually that is ineffective, and it’s fairly hard to have an ear on our side with we got Butchy as gov, and our old useless gov kempthorne as secretary of interior.

    It might get to the point where we might have to start lynching slow elk off our public landscape, 100 at a time..

  16. avatar Rick Hammel says:

    Rob…I did a stream reclaimation project on a ranch in NW Colorado a few years back. When I started, there were few willows, cutbanks and a wide, shallow stream. I kept the cows off the stram with electric fencing.

    After 3 years, the project was complete. willow had regenerated and grass was growing back into the stream. the channel had narroed by at least 33%. The stream was well on its way to being healthy again.

    Today, the stream is back to where it was when I first started the project; an unhealthy stream. And $7000 and 3 summers waisted. So don’t tell me that ranchers, for the most part, care about the land. All they care about is the bottom line… the bank loan that never gets paid off.

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‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey

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