Columbia Falls man cited for poaching two wolves-

Although it is wolf hunting season in Montana, one NW Montanan couldn’t wait. He shot two wolves along Whale Creek Road in the North Fork Flathead drainage on Oct. 9.  He plead guilty and paid a large fine for a wolf violation, a $1,135 fine.  A third wolf has been shot and left in the general North Fork Flathead area. That was in the Red Top Meadow area. Montana FWP is looking for info.

It isn’t clear if these poached wolves will be added to the quota of 75.

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Someone sent me the photo below. This appears to be in the Lolo area NW of Missoula.

 

LoloMontanaRanch

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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.

241 Responses to MT man poaches 2 wolves; pays $1135

  1. avatar jdubya says:

    Did he lose his hunting and fishing license or the next decade?

  2. avatar Cris Waller says:

    The quota in the North Fork Flathead is 2 wolves; if 3 were poached there, the area should be closed to hunting!

  3. avatar Mike says:

    He lost his fishing and hunting license for life, right?

  4. avatar April Clauson says:

    The fine is not large enough, maybe 5,000.00 each kill would really make someone think twice before shooting a wolf, 1,135.00 is nothing to some folks. And I agree with other, he should loose hunting rights for life.

  5. avatar Save bears says:

    It is amazing how ignorant some are on this issue..

  6. avatar April Clauson says:

    And how are we ignorant? he poached, should be fined more, loose his license. What are your thoughts Save Bears?? Do you know something we do not on this issue? Or are you just being you, mr. know it all????

  7. avatar Sal_N says:

    April

    SB is probably trying to say that the fines for killing the wolves before the season opened were set at the time the tag prices were set. This guy was handed the same fine as if he had shot an elk, deer or any other game animal prior to the season opening.

    He may have lost his hunting rights for a bit, but that will not change his behaviour.

    Frankly I am surprised that he paid that much.

    What he did was wrong in the eyes of the state and horrible in the eyes of all who support wolf reintroduction and want the wolves relisted under ESA. What I wonder is why the good people of Missoula, Flathead Lake and all the “transplant” people who are most likely against wolf hunting in MT have not spoken against this infraction and others.

    But that is my 1cent on this issue, I will let SB respond to your questions.

  8. avatar April Clauson says:

    Thanks Sal, I really think he put that up for my benefit, but you could be right, but he could at least explain what he meant, not just post what he did without some explanation. I still think that the fine is not enough, like I have said before, our wild life sure goes cheap! The transplants are more than likely afraid to speak up out there, from what I hear if you are pro wolf in some parts out west your life is made very difficult by the locals.

  9. avatar josh sutherland says:

    I would imagine he would lose his hunting rights for 5-10 years. Thats about what he would get in UT.

  10. avatar jerryB says:

    Just received an answer from Montana FWP director about the quota………..

    No. Just like all other incidents of this nature, we do not reduce quota because of poaching problems. However, if we see a surge of this behaviour we’ll need to re-evaluate.

  11. avatar nabeki says:

    I live close to the North Fork and I’m sad to hear this. These could be Glacier wolves because of the park’s proximity.

    http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com

  12. avatar nabeki says:

    jerryB
    This is just wrong. They should lower the quota for each wolf poached, otherwise what’s the incentive to stop poaching? These guys will willingly pay the fine.

    http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com

  13. avatar jerryB says:

    SAL_N…
    “What I wonder is why the good people of Missoula, Flathead Lake and all the “transplant” people who are most likely against wolf hunting in MT have not spoken against this infraction and others.”

    WOW!! That statement lacks any facts or knowledge of what us “transplants”are doing, and have done, to bring this type of behavior public. I don’t even have the time to enumerate the issues that we’re fighting every day relating to the mis-management of wildlife in Montana by MFWP. It goes on day after day, whether it’s wolves, lions, bears, coyotes etc.
    Course we can always use your help should you decide to volunteer some of your time. That way you’ll get some idea of what we’re up against.

  14. avatar Wilderness Muse says:

    JerryB’s report from MT FWP (if accurate, and I believe it is) certainly gives an indication of where they are going with this. Strategically and legally speaking, with respect to support the delisting arguments, one would think they would deduct these three wolves from the quota for that management unit (WMU 2 and/or the Northfork subunit).

    It would be conservative, consistent with the approach ID has taken on illegal kills, and it would convey the impression they were sincerely managing for a take of no more than 75 for the entire state.

    Plaintiffs to the suit pending before Malloy can use this as evidence of not following their agreed plan and harvest quota. MT is even dumber than I thought.

  15. avatar Sal_N says:

    JerryB

    Great to hear some people are active.

    As for using a helping hand, I have been helping as much as I possibly can. Mostly been working with the YNP area and defenders.

    I know very well what I am up against Jerry. I have also had my share of running battles with a few people in Park county. I have taken business away from people who purchased wolf tags recently and that was in September. Well I could name names and go on and on but that may not be the forum for it.

  16. avatar gline says:

    why in the heck wouldnt poached wolves be added to the quota? that really goes beyond it now

  17. avatar gline says:

    I think I’m done with this type of stuff.. I will be making some serious noise now with FWP
    “we do not reduce quota because of poaching problems. However, if we see a surge of this behaviour we’ll need to re-evaluate.”
    and how much of a “surge” would this be? The beginning of poaching is a surge to me.

  18. avatar gline says:

    MT is just as bad as ID right now- for some reason, I thought MT would be better- more conservative of a number for the quota, etc. The comments I’ve heard in the community are not conservative. The blogs on the Missoulian are just as bad as the ID newspapers. Now it is in my backyard and the FWP head reaction is so lackidasical-(sp)

    I’ve stopped writing or calling FWP because it results in no change. they just stall but say they are open to hearing my comments. The only choice I have is to keep writing, calling and keep talking. I am so frustrated and truly saddened every day.

  19. avatar jerryB says:

    Here’s the email from Joe Maurier, director of MFWP. I only deleted my email and phone #.

    No. Just like all other incidents of this nature, we do not reduce quota because of poaching problems. However, if we see a surge of this behaviour we’ll need to re-evaluate.

    Thanks.

    Joe
    —–Original Message—–

    Sent: Tuesday, October 27, 2009 5:09 PM
    To: Sime, Carolyn; Maurier, Joe
    Subject: Wolves Poached in N.Fork Flathead area

    Ms Sime and Mr Maurier,

    Do the wolves that were poached in the N Fork Flathead area count toward the quota?
    Jerry Black

    “WOLF HUNTING… .. “THE KILLING OF BEAUTY BY THOSE IGNORANT OF IT”

    “WOLF HUNTING… .. “THE KILLING OF BEAUTY BY THOSE IGNORANT OF IT”

  20. avatar william huard says:

    I spoke to caroyln sime about wolves. It is unfortunate that people like her make wildlife decisions. The attitude and culture of hunting first and wildlife last is an all too familiar western model that hasn’t changed much over the years. The coward that poached these wolves should lose his license for life, the wolf losses should be taken from the quota, and the USFWS should be at the landowners door asking questions about his stupid sign.

  21. avatar Elk275 says:

    For those that do not like the way the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks manages the wildlife in the State of Montana please do it democratically. Go to the state legislator and introduce a bill, pass it and it will be the people. I grew up in this state and my family came here in 1886. The state has done a wonderful job managing wildlife since that time.

    There are a number of people who move here including hunting and guides and radical environmentalist immediately want to change things to there way of thinking.

  22. avatar jerryB says:

    gline……a suggestion for better response.
    Send all comments to the governor with a cc to Joe Maurier (director) and a cc to Caroline Sime.
    It will go to the governor’s office and be assigned a number. Then it will be sent to Maurier or Sime, back to the governor, then to you. Usualy works, but be ready for a load of BS.
    governor@mt.gov
    Jmaurier@mt.gov
    casime@mt.gov

    Good Luck!!

  23. avatar Cris Waller says:

    Ridiculous.

    The quota for the NF subunit is *2 wolves.* 150% of that number have been killed by *known* poachers… they don’t consider that serious?

  24. avatar Elk275 says:

    william huard

    “and the USFWS should be at the landowners door asking questions about his stupid sign”

    What right does the USFWS have asking the landowner about his. This is a wolf season in Montana and that is the way it is — get use to it.

  25. avatar jerryB says:

    elk275………now how far do you think one would get in a legislature that is controlled by the livestock industry. Just look at the latest session and the horse slaughter and puppy mill bill.
    Footloose Montana tried to get legislative support to change a few trapping regulations and finally had to go the initiative route.
    And how can you say the state has done a great job managing wolverine, fisher and otter…2 of which are up for listing because FWP has done such a poor job of managing them. Also the hound hunters are screaming about too many female lions being killed. These guys know lions better than FWP.
    What about managing other non-game animals….think they do a good job?
    Have you taken the time to read Minnesota’s wolf management plan? Read it and tell us how great Montanas wolf plan is.

  26. avatar william huard says:

    elk 275 if i am not mistaken montana manages the wolf hunt, but the usfws oversees the delisting of an endangered species. The landowner based on his sign may have already broken the law by allowing wolf hunting without proper permits and licenses -usually called poaching.

  27. avatar william huard says:

    jerryb We cannot forget about the illustrious dept of livestock and their “management” of the bison population in Montana- what a joke!

  28. avatar Carl says:

    Ralph,
    Is there a printed story that gives more information about this poaching incident? Did this guy even have a license to hunt wolves? In most states when harvest numbers are set for a species illegal take is considered prior to setting the allowable harvest. From what I’ve read in the comments it sounds like Montana did not consider illegal taking before it set the quota. Is this correct?

    Carl,

    There was a printed story no longer than mine. I added my own information and took some info from the story. Maybe you can find more. Here is the link Ralph Maughan

  29. avatar Carl says:

    William Huard,

    Once a species is removed from the Endangered Species list the USFWS no longer has juridiction over that species. It becomes the responsibility of the state. There are exceptions to this if for example it is considered a migratory bird.

  30. avatar Elk275 says:

    william huard

    If a Block Management Area has a green sign that says hunters are welcome is that breaking the law. What if one shoots a wolf in that Block Management Area are they breaking the law. Yes, if the season is closed, yes, if the season is open and the hunter does not have license, no, if the season is open and the hunter has a license.

  31. avatar jerryB says:

    william huard… You’re right……forgot about the bison disaster and the grizzly management hasn’t gone very well either especially in the greater Yellowstone ecosystem.
    But then,I don’t know about you, but I’m not a 5th generation Montanan which automatically makes me stupid or a radical wacko.

  32. avatar Elk275 says:

    Jerry B

    “elk275………now how far do you think one would get in a legislature that is controlled by the livestock industry. Just look at the latest session and the horse slaughter and puppy mill bill.”

    The legislature is the will of the people and the will of the people is democracy. This is what America is founded on. We may not like it but that is the way it is. I not a fan of the livestock industry either.

    I do not know anything about the puppy mill bill, but the horse slaughter bill was a very good bill. I am not a horseman, but have a horse. In the 70’s to the mid 80’s my family had between 25 to 50 very good quality quarter horses and draft horses, all of them were well taken care of. Horses get old and get older, then die. What is better to let them die and have the rendering plant come out and remove them or sell them to a horse slaughter plant and get some money or pay the rendering plant to pick them up. I saw some horse that I loved leave for the slaughtering plant — it was hard, but it was the best course of action.

    Currently, my horse is 20 to 22 years old and has never been a good horse for my purposes. He was a good horse in the dude string. I have had him 3 years. I have ridden many miles on horseback and know a good horse from a poor horse. I made a poor purchase late one night. I wished that Montana had a horse slaughter plant open today because this where he would be going.

    Currently, Colter, my horse is in the mountains on private land, I could shoot him, but no I do not want to do that.

    Well I have eaten 2 artichokes and drank a half of a six pack of Henry Weinhard’s Private Reserve. time to stop writing.

  33. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    I think the fine should be much higher and he should not be allowed to purchase a hunting license for life. There is no excuse for poaching any species.

  34. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    Elk275. where do they want to put a horse slaughterhouse?

  35. When people get mad about hunting or non-hunting issues, backwards thinking, paying to use the land when others get to for a mere token, failure to appreciate all wildlife, and sometimes even to appreciate elk and deer in the legislature, I almost always point to the livestock industry.

    This overblown, Hollywoodized, arrogant bunch of cowflop, welfare aristocracy, is the major public lands problem in the West.

    It needs to be said again and again

  36. avatar Elk275 says:

    ProWolf

    I have not paid much attention to the details except that they passed the bill.

  37. avatar jerryB says:

    ELK275
    Sounds like a better meal than I had….not sure about the Henry’s though. Not dark enough for me.

    ProWolf in Wy

    The Montana legislature passed a bill this year that allows for horse slaughter plants, but nobody wants it in their city.

  38. avatar Elk275 says:

    Jerry B

    I like New Beligum 1554 better, but I spaced it out tonight. The next 6 pack will be 1554.

  39. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    The old NIMBY thing, huh jerryB?

    Ralph, you are right that the livestock industry is the root of most of the problems that are blogged about on this site.

  40. avatar nabeki says:

    jerryB:

    You seriously believe Montana has done a stellar job throughout the years managing wildlife? Ummmm, the wolf was eradicated from the state with the help of the feds for ranching and hunting interests. Montana even introduced mange into the wolf population to help get rid of them. I guess hunters and ranchers love the job the state is doing since all the wildlife is managed for them. So s’cuse me if I beg to differ.

    I don’t think writing the governor is going to do any good, he’s the one that said if Molloy stopped the hunts he’d go looking for another judge!!

    http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com

  41. avatar nabeki says:

    Ooopps I meant to address the above post to Elk275 not you JerryB….sorry.

  42. avatar nabeki says:

    Ralph says:
    “This overblown, Hollywoodized, arrogant bunch of cowflop, welfare aristocracy, is the major public lands problem in the West.

    It needs to be said again and again”

    And again and again!!!!!

  43. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    Nabeki, I have also read that about mange being introduced to wolves. Probably one of the few animals to actually have biological warfare used on it. As far as the governor, I don’t think the state has had any that have been real kind to wolves (or buffalo). I’m not sure if this one is better than the two before him (I didn’t live in Montana long before Racicot was elected so can’t say much about the ones before him).

  44. avatar Save bears says:

    April,

    I didn’t say anyone here was ignorant, now did I Miss Know it All! I said it is amazing how ignorant some people are, which means the dumb shit that poached the wolves!!!

  45. avatar Elk275 says:

    nabeki

    “Ummmm, the wolf was eradicated from the state with the help of the feds for ranching and hunting interests. Montana even introduced mange into the wolf population to help get rid of them. ”

    From what I have read the wolves were eradicated in the end of the 30’s, that was a different time and place. We did not live in the Depression years or suffer the hardships of those years. It was a different era.

    If you know Montana history well, then it was the Anaconda Mining Company that control the state of Montana in those years and control it with an iron hand. The only major newspaper in the state tha was not control by the Anaconda Mining Company was the Miles City Star. The livestock interest was well behind the influance of the AMC. What does this have to do with wolves, not a lot but it is still the history of Montana.

  46. avatar Elk275 says:

    “I said it is amazing how ignorant some people”

    No one is ignorant, some people do not know Montana history. How many people know what the great shut down in 1905 was about or even know what it was.

    It was one of the most important historical events in the state and we live with the outcome for many years.

  47. avatar Save bears says:

    Just to add, I don’t condone any type of poaching of any big game animal and I don’t give the wolf anymore or anyless weight than any other big game animal, which is what it currently is in the state of Montana, when you breach a line and poach, you are no longer a hunter, you are a criminal.

    Unfortunately, I knew this type of behavior was going to happen and no matter what the rulings coming down the road are, I am sure it will continue to happen. As far as them being “Glacier Wolves” I don’t think that comes into the equation, they are naturally occurring wolves that got there by migration and self establishment.

    But my only point was the guy that poached them was ignorant and I think he should be punished, but I am not of the opinion that he should be punished for poaching wolves anymore than if he poached another big game species. USFWS has no authority in this issue, they however are monitoring the situation as a whole, but they don’t have any authority to act when something of this nature happens.

  48. avatar Save bears says:

    Elk,

    I happen to think there are quite a few ignorant people in the state of Montana, I am not native Montana, but my wife and her family is, they came here in 1878 and still currently own their homestead property, so I am pretty knowledgeable about Montana and the issues that face the state. I also worked for the agency that manages wildlife in the state, so I do have some insight into the agency and management policies.

  49. Elk275,

    You’re very correct to bring up how the people of Montana had to struggle against Anaconda Mining (and Montana Power too). It’s important that folks remember.

    The problem with livestock may have not been number one, but it has grown. At one time it was supposed that public land ranching would disappear and the public domain was settled and turned to crops, but there wasn’t enough water to take these lands, so livestock drifted all year long and nearly destroyed them.

    Efforts to rehabilitate them by creating the Grazing Service, grazing allotments, and finally the BLM have not been very effective because in the meantime, this minor economic activity (I’m talking public lands here, not private or CAFOs) became the unlikely hero of “The Western.”

    The is pretty damn odd because the entire point of public lands livestock ranching has been to make the West as tame as a fenced pasture in central Ohio.

  50. avatar Mike says:

    Doesn’t surprise me that this happened in the Noth Fork. It seems there is a much larger ratio of idiots in that area, and I’m not talking just about poachers, but also about people who felt the need to build second homes in one of the most astonishing places in the world. In the end, as bad as it is, the poacher is less offensive than those people.

  51. avatar Ken Cole says:

    Elk275,

    “I grew up in this state and my family came here in 1886. The state has done a wonderful job managing wildlife since that time.

    There are a number of people who move here including hunting and guides and radical environmentalist immediately want to change things to there way of thinking.”

    Guess what, that’s the way it is.

    I don’t fully know what you were meaning by this statement but I’m going to address one thing that comes to mind.

    I often hear people say that “those damned **insert stereotypical identifier here** need to quit telling us what to do.” This is said as though the opinions of “those people” doesn’t matter or that “they just don’t understand or know what they are talking about”. The fact of the matter is that, yes, it does matter and no matter how much one tries to disenfranchise these people they will continue to speak up.

    I’ve been accused of being in any number of groups that I’m not just because I disagree with someone’s feelings about environmental issues. People figure I must be a transplant or that I have never been around wolves or some other bullshit like that and I just have to laugh. The other thing is that they don’t seem to have any regard for Native Americans or their values.

    My family came to Idaho in 1888. That’s 5 generations in Idaho. I don’t feel that I have a greater say over someone who came from out of state last week or 10,000 years ago. It’s not about that, it’s about the ideas and their merit.

    Maybe people from the East Coast do have some perspective. They don’t take for granted what we have here in the West and don’t want to see us make the same stupid mistakes they did. Are Westerners so stupid that we can’t learn from other people’s mistakes? I think we are.

  52. avatar Layton says:

    Ken,

    The “stereotypical identifiers” come in bunches — from BOTH sides.

    I get so damned tired of being classed as some sort of an idiot redneck because I live (proudly) in Idaho that I can’t see straight!

    “My family came to Idaho in 1888. That’s 5 generations in Idaho. I don’t feel that I have a greater say over someone who came from out of state last week or 10,000 years ago. It’s not about that, it’s about the ideas and their merit.”

    Part of your statement here is absolutely on the mark, part of it misses by a large margin.

    Normally speaking, people that live in and around a problem area have a greater awareness of what is REALLY going on than people that do NOT live in close proximity.

    That is not to say that someone that has an INFORMED idea should not have that idea fairly evaluated, but emotional, uniformed, naive schemes submitted by people that have ABSOLUTELY no idea about the subject should be immediately disregarded and not have time spent even arguing about them.

  53. avatar Pronghorn says:

    Minor correction: Lolo is south of Missoula at US93 & US12. Grave Creek (mentioned on landowner’s sign) is west on US12, probably closer to Lolo Pass (MT/ID border) than to the town of Lolo. Roughly 32 miles from Lolo the town to Lolo the pass. Just FYI.

  54. avatar April Clauson says:

    Hey SB,
    Sorry for the error, I took it as you were siding with the man that killed the wolf, you usually take the hunters side on these types of matters, so happy that you do not like Poachers!

  55. avatar Save bears says:

    April,

    I will always take a legal hunters side on hunting issues, but this guy is not a hunter, he is a criminal, and I will always talk out against criminals…breaking the law is breaking the law…and I don’t condone breaking the law in any way shape or form…

  56. avatar Elk275 says:

    Kne Cole

    “I often hear people say that “those damned **insert stereotypical identifier here** need to quit telling us what to do.” This is said as though the opinions of “those people” doesn’t matter or that “they just don’t understand or know what they are talking about”. The fact of the matter is that, yes, it does matter and no matter how much one tries to disenfranchise these people they will continue to speak up.”

    Maybe it is values, one values someting different than the other. Some of the most effective people in the conservation movement were from out of state: Dan Baily (Livingston, Mt) and Smoke Eliser (Missoula, Montana). Dan save the Yellowstone from being damned and Smoke was very involved with the expandson of the Bob Marshall complex.

  57. avatar Chris H says:

    Ken Cole, -an excellent point regarding “the way it is”. It seems disingenuous to say my family came to Montana in 1886, as if that implies legitimacy, and then to say that in the 1930’s it was a different time and place and that it has no bearing on events today. Lacks consistency.

  58. avatar nabeki says:

    Elk275 Says:
    “I grew up in this state and my family came here in 1886. The state has done a wonderful job managing wildlife since that time.”

    I was referring to the above statement you made. I don’t believe Montana has done a wonderful job of managing wildlife in this state. They directly participated in helping exterminate gray wolves from Montana in league with the feds.:

    “The Park Service and {probably the Forest Service)” …..initiated poisoning in Glacier National Park in Northwestern Montana in 1918″ (excerpt from “Predatory Bureaucracy.”)

    The state of Montana specifically introduced mange iinto the gray wolf population for the sole purpose of eradicationg them. I call that bad wildlife management.

    Also it’s no secret the state “manages” wildlife for ranching and hunting interests. So if you’re a rancher or a hunter I’m sure you’ll be very happy with the state’s management policies. I’m neither. I prefer to view wildlife when they’re alive and I resent deeply Wildlife Service’s killing so much of America’s animals.

    When wolves die in this state it’s FWP that gives Wildlife Services their killing orders to take out wolves they deem to be preying on livestock. Wolves kill a very small percentage of cattle. You can cheek the USDA numbers, yet ranchers are constantly screaming bloody murder about all the damage wolves do. And yes, I know about the sheep attack in Dillon but that was a highly unusual event.

    http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com

  59. avatar Wilderness Muse says:

    nabeki,

    Your statement: “The state of Montana specifically introduced mange iinto the gray wolf population for the sole purpose of eradicationg them.”

    Is there any verifiable proof of this, and can you get us closer to an authoritative source? Don’t the Yellowstone wolves have it too, and do we know what that source is?
    Seems if there is proof it would have or would be added as a claim by Defenders in the current suit as an indication of their insincerity in assuming management responsibility.

  60. avatar nabeki says:

    Wilderness Muse
    I should have been clearer about this. This was done in the 19th century by Montana when the West was on it’s wolf killing mission, sorry for the mix up.

    I’m aware that some of the Yellowstone wolves have mange. I think one of the pups recently died from it. But I have no proof about the recent bout of mange among Yellowstone wolves and how it was introduced. Although maybe that’s something to look into?

    http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com

  61. avatar nabeki says:

    Wilderness Muse:

    I found this on Ralph’s Wolf Report from 2003:

    “Mange is not a native infestation, in 1905, Montana state veterinarians introduced sarcoptic mange into the local wolf population to try to weaken and kill it. Wildlife still suffers today from their crude biological warfare. One might also speculate that weak wolves are more likely to go after easy stuff like sheep and cow calves.”
    http://www.forwolves.org/ralph/absaroka-pack-mange.htm

  62. avatar ID_Paul says:

    I have to agree with Layton’s post Oct. 28 10:46 – A lot of the problem comes from the pervading attitude from the non-Westerners that we locals are ignorant and backwards. Maybe if we were treated with more respect we would be more open to the changes so many outsiders want to force upon our home areas.

    Ken Cole – If you feel a newcomer has equal rights to a native in how things are done, then we’ll just have to disagree on that point. I think it is quite disrespectful for anyone to move in anywhere, in any social or cultural context, and immediately demand the locals now do things their way – especially when that demand is accompanied by an attitude of disrespect and superiority toward that person’s new neighbors.

  63. ID-Paul,

    The problem doesn’t come from non-Westerners. I don’t think it is newscomers either.

    There has always been disagreement in the West about these issues. It is probably more of a rural/urban disagreement that has gone for a long time inside the West. Ken and his family and me and my family have lived in the West, forever, but we often take a position that runs counter to the dominant view in rural Idaho, MT, etc.

  64. avatar Wilderness Muse says:

    Nabeki,

    Thanks for the clarification. Discovering the source for current mange, wherever it occurs is more problematic.

  65. avatar JB says:

    Ralph has the right of it here. Urban people are very used to tight regulation of their behavior. IMO such regulation is required to exist in high population densities. Rural folk (especially Westerners), on the other hand; have grown accustomed to doing whatever they want with their land. Resentment comes when urban people want what they see as “common sense” policy, which, translated to rural-speak equals “big brother”.

  66. avatar ID_Paul says:

    Ralph, can’t disagree with the fact that urban vs rural is definitely a big issue, maybe even more than West vs East. It just seems that there are more urbanites from outside the West than inside, which is expected given the demographics of the regions.

    It still boils down to some common decency and respect – and that needs to go both ways.

  67. avatar Save bears says:

    JB,

    Urban “common sense” is far different than rural “common sense”

  68. avatar ProWolf in WY says:

    Also it’s no secret the state “manages” wildlife for ranching and hunting interests.

    That’s pretty much every western state,

  69. avatar April Clauson says:

    ID_Paul Says:
    October 28, 2009 at 2:43 PM

    I have to agree with Layton’s post Oct. 28 10:46 – A lot of the problem comes from the pervading attitude from the non-Westerners that we locals are ignorant and backwards. Maybe if we were treated with more respect we would be more open to the changes so many outsiders want to force upon our home areas.

    Ken Cole – If you feel a newcomer has equal rights to a native in how things are done, then we’ll just have to disagree on that point. I think it is quite disrespectful for anyone to move in anywhere, in any social or cultural context, and immediately demand the locals now do things their way – especially when that demand is accompanied by an attitude of disrespect and superiority toward that person’s new neighbors.

    So I have to ask, you move to California lets say, your new neighbor is beating the wife, raping the kids, and killing the pets, are you going to ignore it, or do something about it? Just because the “good old folks” have been robbing and raping our, yes our lands does not mean it is right, just that they feel they are better than everyone else!

  70. avatar Maska says:

    ” Rural folk (especially Westerners), on the other hand; have grown accustomed to doing whatever they want with their land.”

    The problem is that they’re also accustomed to doing whatever they want with OUR (i.e. public) land, usually with the tacit approval of the land management agencies.

    One other note: the West is probably as urbanized as any region of the country in terms of percentage of the population living in urban metropolitan areas. Here are some urban population percentages for comparison:

    Arizona: 87.5% urban
    Arkansas: 53.5%
    Maine: 44.6%
    Nevada: 88.3%
    New York: 84.3%

    You can see the entire list of states, with urban percentages, at

    http://www.allcountries.org/uscensus/37_urban_and_rural_population_and_by.html

    This is a page from the U. S. Census Bureau website. The figures are from the 1990 census. Today, the urban percentages would probably be even higher.

  71. avatar Dawn says:

    Why is anyone surprised about this ? But give them props for spelling every word right on the sign !

  72. avatar Save bears says:

    “But give them props for spelling every word right on the sign !”

    And there in lies the deepest problem we have in this country over wildlife and wild lands.. The continuous putdowns..

  73. avatar Layton says:

    April,

    “So I have to ask, you move to California lets say, your new neighbor is beating the wife, raping the kids, and killing the pets, are you going to ignore it, or do something about it?”

    Are you REALLY trying to equate this kind of thing with “the locals doing it their way”?? Give me a large break!! Talk about apples and oranges.

    Actually, if I were to have the problem(s) you reference, I think maybe the rural westerner would be the new neighbor I would want. Odds are he might have a gun and be both willing to use it AND knowledgeable about the how.

  74. avatar ID_Paul says:

    April,

    Incomparable hyperbole. How did we get from wolf poaching to “raping our lands?”

  75. avatar Save bears says:

    First of all

    I would not move to California! and if by some chance I did, and saw what your describing, you can bet, my aim would be DEAD on because of my life I have lived in Montana, ID and Wyoming!

  76. avatar ID_Paul says:

    April, I took more time to think about your post and it became clearer to me that this is a prime example of what I am talking about – the superior attitude and broad-brush condemnation of the natives. Dawn’s apparent sarcasm about the spelling on the sign appears to be in the same vein.

    To answer your question directly, of course I would report such a slime to the authorities to be prosecuted.

    Do you truly think that anyone that lives in the simpler and traditional style of the rural West is deserving of being compared to a criminally abusive child rapist? That’s quite the insult.

    Your post also reminds me how deep the emotionalism runs on wildlife issues, and how small a portion the animals themselves seem to be in the motivations of those that claim to “advocate” for them.

  77. Save Bears,

    I wouldn’t move to California either. I spent my entire career in Idaho and sacrificed money to be here, but I love the big outdoors!

    Nevertheless, I’m not quite sure what’s the anger about here.

    SB and ID-Paul- comments or answers?

  78. avatar Save bears says:

    Ralph,

    I am not angry about anything, sorry if I portrayed that.

  79. avatar Save bears says:

    I do have to say, it gets very tiresome to have the continued message posted about how stupid those that live in these areas are…were not stupid and we are not rednecks, but we do have a different perspective, than those that live in the urban environment.

    Every single incident that happens, gets national media, unfortunately, the good stories never get published, 99% of the hunters do it the right way, but we always hear about those that do it the wrong way, I went hunting this last weekend and spent 3 hours watching a pack of wolves, I didn’t shoot any of them, had no desire to shoot any of them, it was a pack of 12, and they were just being wolves…

    But dumb shit in the North Fork of the Flathead shoots two, because he is ignorant and frankly a criminal and it is national headlines, I know for a fact, the majority of hunters are like me and not the dope in the North Fork..

  80. avatar Cris Waller says:

    Well, from the other side of the fence…

    I live in California. I often resent the assumption that, because this is true, I must live in a city and be an urbanite that has never experienced wildlife.

    Not so. I live in rural San Diego County. Up until the recent economic mess, I raised Nigerian Dwarf goats. I see and hear coyotes on a daily basis, bobcats sometimes, and we do get mountain lions although I’ve never seen one. I’ve had rattlesnakes in the house, in the swimming pool, in the driveway, on the front porch- scorpions in the laundry, tarantulas in the bedroom, and black widows under the toaster. One night a while back I had to catch an errant barn owl that flew in the bedroom window and toss him back outside.

    So they stereotyping goes both ways!

  81. avatar Save bears says:

    Cris,

    Sounds like we live a pretty similar life!

  82. avatar JB says:

    “Urban “common sense” is far different than rural “common sense””

    Of course it is! The difference is a the function of growing up in two, very different environments. I grew up in rural Michigan and we never locked the door (to the house or the car). I’ve also lived in Oakland, CA where my car was broken into multiple times and the landlord’s car was stolen out of our driveway in broad daylight. I used to walk through the Tenderloin district of San Francisco and saw drug deals on a weekly basis.

    If people took more time to understand one another rather than insult them for the backwardness, we might find a lot more traction on these issues.

  83. avatar Mike says:

    I don’t think it has anything to do with where someone lives, but rather the level of self awareness an individual has to the environment, which is something that can be obtained anywhere, a “realization” if you will.

    But when we go down that road, isn’t the best conservationist one who lives in the city, walks to work, walks to the grocery store, walks to see family and friends or takes public transportation while having a very small apartment or a tiny piece of land in a crowded neighborhood? Also, by not moving to the national forest(as many conservationsits seem to do), aren’t these city dwellers by default doing less harm to wildlands and linkage zones for endangered animals? They are not contributing to rural sprawl.

    I look at some of the people that live in rural areas, and I just wonder how they do it. Many of them have these $30,000 extended cab pickups that get about 14 MPG on a good day. They live a half hour from the local store. They commute over a hundred miles to work in some cases. When gas prices hit another peak, these people are done, period. They will have to move to the city(Billings, Missoula, etc).

    On the flipside, I look at the traffic around me, the massive congestion and air pollution and wonder how I do it. Living in a crowded place is not for everyone. For example, my county is 337 square miles and has 930,000 people in it.

    That said, I would rather see this place developed and sprawled than the areas next to national forests (beartooth front, Bitteroot Valley, U.S. 93 in Montana, Idaho, etc) because those places still have a vital, intact ecosystem with big rare animals. There’s no public land out here, and even the rare parkland gets sold for development when the pressure gets put on. There’s no mechanism in place to prevent this.

  84. avatar Mike says:

    To further expand, I’ve met people who grew up in rural and urban areas who are light years apart in “common sense” in terms of nature. Ever year while camping, I encounter locals who do some of the dumbest things I’ve ever seen. Two years ago I was at campground in the Gallatin National Forest, when some “adults” pulled up with a extended cab Dodge and two 4 wheelers on a trailer. The entire area was Stage II fire restricitons, but these guys decided to bring their house grill in the back of the pickup (it was strapped up in the bed). They proceeded to back the truck down the wooded hill offroad and drop the grill off at their campsite, which was illegal. Alsom, the campground did not allow trailers. They proceeded to build a giant fire, even though no fires were allowed and it was windy. They set up a large spotlight which lit up the entire campground with a fierce light, blocking the view of the night sky. To top it off, they had coolers and meat laying everywhere, with junk and wrappers blowing in the woods behind their site. I had enough so I called law enforcment at about 1 AM, and they were subsequently fined.

    Conversely, I’ve seen people form the cities who camp there create small fires, not litter, pull up in fuel effecient vehicles, not play loud music, not break fire restriction rules and generaly show a level of self awarness and understanding.

    Like I said, it has nothing to do with where you live, but rather your level of self awareness which can be developed in any environment.

  85. avatar Ken Cole says:

    ID_Paul ,

    “If you feel a newcomer has equal rights to a native in how things are done, then we’ll just have to disagree on that point.”

    By that reasoning you would have to admit that Native Americans should be making all of the decisions. It’s only logical……..

    At what point does one become a local?

  86. avatar ID_Paul says:

    Ralph, no anger here either, just frustration. Save bears’ October 28, 2009 at 10:53 PM post covers my thoughts well.

    Ken, (first – I like the nuthatch photo in your profile) Read my whole post, esp. the last sentence: “… is accompanied by an attitude of disrespect and superiority toward that person’s new neighbors.” That is the main key to this issue as I see it.

    To address your point, the way the Native Americans were treated historically and up to the present (based on my limited knowledge on the subject) has been poor at best. Possibly, it serves as a rather extreme example of what I am talking about. They _were_ here first, and should be given consideration.

    As to when a person becomes a “local”… that’s not something that can be given a black & white definition. Some newcomers can gain the respect and integrate faster than others. I have some good friends that moved to Idaho in the past few years.

    The problem arises, IMHO, when the new guy walks in, insults the status quo and through words or actions states “I’m here now, I’m smarter and now you’re all going to do things my way.”

    As Layton said in his October 28, 2009 at 10:46 AM post, someone with an informed idea deserves to have that idea evaluated. To me, that would include newcomers, as sometimes a different perspective could be beneficial. Again, it all comes down to attitude.

    OK, I’m rambling. Time for breakfast so I can think clearly before posting more.

  87. avatar April Clauson says:

    Morning, well, I did not get the response I was looking for, at first. All I meant is to put a comparison up of the statement “If you feel a newcomer has equal rights to a native in how things are done, then we’ll just have to disagree on that point.” And I see that if ya moved to CA and had that neighbor you would do something about it, so why can not a new comer to your area’s have the same right. To me, anyway, what I described is how I some times feel certain people and legislators are doing to our wild life, and our PUBLIC lands, which is everyone’s, not just the state, sometimes you guys take things too literally….LOL

  88. avatar April Clauson says:

    http://www.bozemandailychronicle.com/articles/2009/10/29/news/000hunt.txt

    Please read this article, it is not poaching, but I just can not accept the way this hunter on Sunday killed this collard wolf, some rules should be made I feel in regards to how you can kill a wolf, can you run an elk down in an ATV while hunting?

  89. avatar catbestland says:

    Thanks for posting that link April. I agree, rules should be set. I found this statement particularly irksom.

    “After stalking him for eight miles in the snowy foothills of the Beartooth Mountains, onto a wide and grassy plateau. . .” “Stalking” on a four wheeler??? Please!!! Shouldn’t that say “After running him down for eight miles. . . “

  90. avatar gline says:

    I remember an incident a couple of years ago about a wolf being run down by an ATV. The driver on the ATV that was on top of the wolf said the wolf was biting his leg, he feared for his life, so he had to shoot it!

    I cannot wait for this lawsuit to begin.

  91. avatar gline says:

    *incident was in Ennis, MT -ranch

  92. avatar gline says:

    I dont want to distract from your post April, just a sideline…and that thoroughly disgusts me. Would anyone run down an Elk from an atv?

  93. avatar Jay says:

    How about the mention of a “lethal shot to the rear”? You hear so much about the cruelty of wolves when they kill, but to take 4 shots and miss, and than kill this wolf with an ass shot shows how little this guy gives a shit about a “humane” (oxymoron, if you ask me) kill.

  94. avatar gline says:

    *the information in you link disgust me. sorry I cant write today. these stories are getting worse too

  95. avatar gline says:

    The shot to the rear type of hunting tactic happened last time wolves lost their needed protection. I remember seeing Lynne Stone’s photos of it. It’s retalitory hunting. This is not an ethical hunt at all.

  96. Don’t you think this guy was just like a primitive human stalking his prey on his ATV?

  97. avatar Mike says:

    UPDATE:

    The Big Timber guy who followed the wolf for 8 miles on ATV and then missed four times, hitting the rear end in a fifth shot will be under investigation for illegal activities while wolf hunting:

    http://www.wilderness-sportsman.com/wsblog/

    A simple call to the directors office of FWP with a link to this story got the ball rolling this afternoon.

    You cannot hunt wolves with motor vehicles in Montana.

  98. avatar April Clauson says:

    Wow, thanks for the update and link Mike, so glad to hear it!!!

  99. avatar Cindy says:

    Thank You! to the beautiful and wild black haired Wolf that sacrificed his life on Sunday. The true colors of wolf hunting will be actualized and I honor this special Wolf for giving us the information we need to blow the cover off these inhumane humans. Don’t be fooled stupid wolf hunters, the Wolf always wins… If you don’t kill these animals with the reverence and respect they and us demand, you will get your just rewards, guaranteed. It’s how nature works. (Sorry about the stupid comment but it fits my feelings right now).

  100. avatar Save bears says:

    The longer this goes, the worse it is going to get, the pro wolf people have tried to tear every single legal wolf kill apart and the people with the tags have tried to justify every single kill made, some have been made illegal and I am glad they are prosecuting, but as I said almost a year ago, I am not surprised, and you will see an increasing number of wolves killed, legally or illegally, with the way things are going, I think most of them are going to be illegally…

  101. avatar josh sutherland says:

    Guys hate to blow a hole in your claims, if you read the article he states “He stalked the wolf for 8 miles…” He never said he stalked it on his 4 wheeler. Also it is possible to hunt wolves from a motor vehicle you just cannot shoot from the vehicle or within a certain distance of the road.

  102. avatar Save bears says:

    100% right Josh,

    As a past employee of the same agency investigation this, there is nothing in the rules that you can’t follow any big game animal from a motor vehicle, only that you can’t shoot from the vehicle, and you can shoot from a maintained road

  103. avatar timz says:

    ya, like he kept up with a wolf on foot for 8 miles. maybe he’s the reincarnation of Daniel Boone.

  104. avatar Save bears says:

    that was “can’t shoot from a maintained road” based on what I have read, I don’t see where he shot from the vehicle and I don’t see where he shot from a road..

  105. A person that does not know that it is illegal to shoot an animal after stalking it for 8 miles with an ATV has no right to hunt period. The idiot even had his trophy picture with the wolf draped over the ATV!!!I hope the authorities confiscate the wolf and suspend his hunting priveledges. So much for hunter education.

  106. avatar Save bears says:

    William,

    There is nothing illegal about following a big game animal on a vehicle as long as you don’t shoot from the vehicle and you don’t shoot from the road…

  107. avatar timz says:

    “There is nothing illegal about following a big game animal on a vehicle”

    Real sporting, hope he’s proud of himself.

  108. avatar josh sutherland says:

    William how do you know he killed it off of his ATV? What does it matter if he followed the wolf pack on his 4-wheeler, nothing illegal about that. He just cannot SHOOT from the ATV or from the road. Is it illegal to take a picture of a wolf that you killed on your 4-wheeler? In regards to the article this hunter did nothing wrong. Everything here is just speculation.

  109. avatar Save bears says:

    Tim,

    I have made not statement about ethics or morals, I have simply said, in the rules and regulations, it is not illegal to follow a big game animal with a vehicle as long as he didn’t shoot it from the vehicle and he didn’t shoot it from a state recognized maintained road. that is NOT saying I approve or disapprove, that is saying, after working for the same agency, I know the laws that govern this situation…ethics and morals are a personal choice..what you would do, what I would do, what he did comes down to your beliefs…

  110. avatar josh sutherland says:

    timz,

    It happens all the time, you can drive around and spot animals from the road on a very consistent basis. Then you plan a stalk and go after the animal. Nothing illegal or unethical at all about what this hunter did.

  111. avatar Layton says:

    William,

    “I hope the authorities confiscate the wolf and suspend his hunting privileges. So much for hunter education.”

    Is the fact that he took the wolf’s picture on an ATV sufficient grounds to confiscate the wolf and suspend his hunting privileges?

    Please enlighten me on just what he did that was illegal.

    Oh, and by the way, what does hunter ed have to do with this?? Do they have a section on where and when you can take a picture??

  112. avatar Mike says:

    Josh – you might want to speak with the top of the rung at MFWP. They are upset about this in a big way.

  113. avatar josh sutherland says:

    But regardless of how he killed it would not change anyones opinion of wolf hunting on this blog. He could of chased it down in a loin clothe and killed it with a spear and I highly doubt you guys would be singing his praises. 🙂

  114. avatar Mike says:

    Not really. This is just trashy.

  115. avatar Mike says:

    ++It happens all the time, you can drive around and spot animals from the road on a very consistent basis. ++

    That’s some good huntin’ there.

  116. avatar Cindy says:

    Layton,
    I think his quote about stalking the animals for 8 miles is a clue that this was not an ethical hunt. Then, the fact it took
    him 4 or 5 shots to bring down the animal seems like an appropriate reason to get this person some education in something. Maybe math?

  117. avatar josh sutherland says:

    Mike I assume they would be, if from your conversation that you had with them you obviously inferred that he chased the wolf down on his ATV and gunned it down. Obviously illegal, but just speculation on your part. So if I was MFWP I would be angry also, but then I would realize that your accusations have no evidence and it will disappear as fast as it came. There is nothing illegal about being a bad shot, though it is unethical, also a hind end shot is common in some areas, commonly referred to as a “texas heart shot”. Though I feel that shot should never be taken on purpose.

    But if it does turn out that the hunter DID do as you all are accussing him then I would agree 100 percent with the comments.

  118. avatar timz says:

    “Nothing illegal or unethical at all about what this hunter did.”

    I suppose not in the minds of you hillbilly hunters.

  119. avatar josh sutherland says:

    Cindy I have stalked animals for more distance than that. You are in one basin, you see them in next basin, get on your wheeler, drive around and there you go. Stalked them for quite a few miles.

    Mike locating the animals is the easy part, killing them with a bow at a distance under 50 yards is the hard part. So yes in areas where you can see for miles, like antelope country , it is VERY effective to cover LOTS of miles off of an ATV till you locate an animal. Then you attempt to sneak in close. We can always meet up for an antelope hunt in WY and you can head off on foot chasin em across the desert if you would like, I will choose a more effective way.

  120. avatar josh sutherland says:

    timz,

    Please explain to me from the article what this hunter did that was illegal or unethcial? Using the information from the article only and not your tin foil hat conspiracy’s……..

  121. avatar Save bears says:

    Tim

    good name calling, but don’t worry it happens all the time…if he shot from his vehicle, then throw the book, if he shot from a recognized maintained road, throw the book, but if he followed and then legally shot this big game animal, that is between him and what ever he believes is right.

    I would love to see you call some of these people hillbilly hunters to their face.

  122. avatar timz says:

    Well save bears I wasn’t talking to you but if the shoe fits I’ll be more than happy to meet you anywhere you like and discuss it.

  123. avatar Mike says:

    ++Mike I assume they would be, if from your conversation that you had with them you obviously inferred that he chased the wolf down on his ATV and gunned it down. Obviously illegal, but just speculation on your part. So if I was MFWP I would be angry also, but then I would realize that your accusations have no evidence and it will disappear as fast as it came.++

    His comments were from reading the article, not any of my assertions. The guy was pissed off.

    ++commonly referred to as a “texas heart shot”. Though I feel that shot should never be taken on purpose.++

    It’s sad when you think about just how unethical this was. He missed the wolf four times, the wolf probably ran and he nailed it in the behind. I bet death was not quick.

    That would be an understandable result if this was some form of sustenance hunting. Instead, a wolf is killed for some guy to show off as a trophy.

    Childish.

  124. avatar April Clauson says:

    I read between lines, took 4 shots, missed, I say he was riding the atv while shooting those 4 shots, maybe he got off his ass for the final kill shot, in the back no less. And if he killed it in lion cloth and bow, if it was collared, I still do not like he killed it. No collared wolves should be shot, period.

  125. avatar Cindy says:

    Oh, I thought when you go out to hunt you go as an equal to the animals, and let the best man win. But since I live in zone something or another for prime Elk hunting here in Wyoming, I know that isn’t the case.

  126. avatar Mike says:

    Save Bears – What’s the difference between shooting the animal from your ATV and stopping your ATV, standing up and shooting the animal?

  127. avatar Mike says:

    April – this guy was mad that FWP took the collar. He wanted it for a “trophy”.

  128. avatar April Clauson says:

    I would love to see you call some of these people hillbilly hunters to their face.

    I would no problem!!! and will have a few witness with me with a camera too!

  129. avatar timz says:

    Careful April, they’ll run you down with their ATV’s then shoot you in the ass after missing four times.

  130. avatar Save bears says:

    Timz, I will be glad to meet you anywhere at anytime, but some how I don’t think you would want to discuss anything..

    Currently I am back in Idaho, in two weeks I will be in Washington to do some consulting work on Elk herds and after the first of the year I will be at the National Bison Range working with USFWS, FWP and the Tribal Authority, where would you like to meet up and discuss…

  131. avatar April Clauson says:

    Mike, yes I saw that, he must not have read the rules that all collars have to be turned in, so I wonder how much hunting rules he really is aware of? and his wolf is bigger than any of the ones his friends shot to!!! He should be so proud, but since he posed for the picture I bet he will be getting backlash from it….

  132. avatar April Clauson says:

    timz Says:
    October 29, 2009 at 4:07 PM

    Careful April, they’ll run you down with their ATV’s then shoot you in the ass after missing four times.

    LOL!!!!!!

  133. avatar Mike says:

    ++ I will be at the National Bison Range ++

    Love that place.

  134. avatar Save bears says:

    Timz?

    What does missing 4 times really have to do with this?

  135. avatar timz says:

    “Timz, I will be glad to meet you anywhere at anytime”

    So is this an admission that the shoe in fact does fit?

  136. avatar Save bears says:

    I will have to concede, the collar part of this is disturbing, I have hunted in several states as well as Canada and all of them make you aware, if you take an animal that has a collar that it has to be turned in…

  137. avatar Save bears says:

    Timz,

    have you always been an asshole to those who have a different opinion than you? You said, you would be happy to discuss it face to face, I told you my schedule for the next three months and you come back with this?

  138. avatar Save bears says:

    I didn’t make any statements about ethics or morals, I simply stated what the law is in the state of Montana, period end of story, in my opinion there was nothing illegal, as far as what my ethics say, that is my business..

  139. avatar timz says:

    “have you always been an asshole”
    The short answer is yes.

  140. avatar Save bears says:

    Good then we are on an even keel…

  141. avatar Wilderness Muse says:

    While this guy may be in idiot in the eyes of most of us, he still may not have broken any law – as long has he had a tag, was in the right unit, and did not “hunt” (shoot?) from the ATV. We surely do not know the facts and there are some ambiguous terms here.

    From the 2009 MT hunting regs:

    • Hunters may not use a motorized vehicle (including OHVs)
    or aircraft to concentrate, drive, rally, stir-up, corral, or harass
    game animals. On public lands it is illegal to operate a motorized
    wheeled vehicle off legal routes (including game retrieval).

    and,

    Prohibited Methods of Taking: It is illegal for anyone to hunt
    or attempt to hunt any game animal or game bird:
    • from any self propelled (that is, motorized) or drawn vehicle.
    Even if the vehicle is not moving, hunters must be off or out
    of the vehicle

    So, we will have to wait to see if, in his pursuit, the investigaors determine the hunter did any of the above things in violation of the regs., which here are only paraphrased, but are quoted as they appear in the hunting regulation pamphlet.

    Query – does “hunt” mean something different from “shoot,” AND what if he used the ATV as a rifle rest?

    And to cap it off, he kills the wolf with what some people call a “California head shot” after missing it four times. What a marksman.

  142. avatar Save bears says:

    WM,

    You hit the nail on the head, there is a big difference between illegal and immoral..

  143. No, of course, he didn’t break the law.

    I was interested to see he was going to “stick” his trophy “out at the ranch.”

  144. avatar Save bears says:

    Ralph,

    Unfortunately knowing as many ranchers as I do, I m sure he will, if found to be a legal kill, it will give him bragging rights for years to come!

  145. avatar josh sutherland says:

    Mike actually a hind end shot with a 300 RUM would kill a wolf quickly. As I am sure you know, the femerol artery runs through the hind end, and taking a hit from a 300 RUM would quite surely rupture that artery and the wolf would be dead in seconds. Unfortunetly I hit my very first deer in the hind end with my bow when I was 15. It went 20 feet.

    April and Cindy your comments make no sense sometimes.

  146. avatar Rita K.Sharpe says:

    There are decent respectable hunters out there,lets not forget. Their character whould be apparent even if they were not hunting.I myself do not care for the sss crowd or poachers.

  147. The events of the last week have left me very frustrated. In the minds of many very little has changed between the events of 1905 when Montana biologists introduced sarcoptic mange to wolves and the attitude that prevails today. Wolves being poached, landowners with signs saying shoot on sight- will work out details later- am I the only person that sees this as really ugly hatred of a predator?

  148. avatar timz says:

    “am I the only person that sees this as really ugly hatred of a predator?”

    NO

  149. avatar Save bears says:

    Rita,

    I agree 100%, but the whole argument is pitting morals against legality, and there is a line between the two, of course I also have to wonder how much was ad lib in the reporters story…..the law in the state of Montana is pretty clear, and I have not seen any indication what he did was illegal, immoral? that is a whole different set of rules, unfortunately or fortunately, we can’t prosecute someone based on their morals, depending on which side of the issue you are on..

  150. avatar Wilderness Muse says:

    He’ll probably want to put the wolf mount right next to the jackalope he got when just a ‘lil tike.

  151. avatar Save bears says:

    William,

    Nope, not at all

  152. avatar Rita K.Sharpe says:

    William Huard, you are not alone.

  153. avatar Cindy says:

    Let me clarify Josh-
    I think hunting by way of a motorized vehicle is laughable. Thinking that the “match is even” when motors are used is just plain ridiculous. And frankly, I’m having trouble restraining myself on this subject right now, so my polite tippy toeing is making my thoughts seem fragmented. Killing for a thrill turns my stomach especially when hunters have been telling me for years, “oh we need the meat, we need to feed our families, we need this and that”. We need a trophy Wolf at the entrance to our cow palace. Modern hunting needs to be seriously revamped, just like managing wildlife. And you can’t tell me these macho guys showing off their kills like this one in the article, isn’t a bit creepy?

  154. avatar April Clauson says:

    josh sutherland Says:
    October 29, 2009 at 4:27 PM

    Mike actually a hind end shot with a 300 RUM would kill a wolf quickly. As I am sure you know, the femerol artery runs through the hind end, and taking a hit from a 300 RUM would quite surely rupture that artery and the wolf would be dead in seconds. Unfortunetly I hit my very first deer in the hind end with my bow when I was 15. It went 20 feet.

    April and Cindy your comments make no sense sometimes.

    Well Josh, you do not make sense to me either sometimes. Looks like your a pretty good hunter yourself from the above statement. kids should not be hunting in my opinion either. hope your shot has gotten better with age, hate to know that all the animals you happily kill are suffering due to your lousy shots….LOL

  155. avatar Save bears says:

    Hatred of wolves is just as prevalent today as it was 100 years ago, that is what people were and continue to be taught, until such time as people are taught not to hate, they will continue to hate, hate is not born, it is taught, and to try and change hundreds of years of teaching in less than 20 years, is not going to be successful, this has to start at the root, and that is with the upcoming generations, there will never be any solution at this time, it will continue to go back and forth in the courts and every single person that illegally shoots a wolf, will continue to think they are right….until such time as we can teach the next generations, that wolves are a valuable part of nature..

  156. avatar Jay says:

    Wow Josh, for one admonishing speculation, that’s a pretty big leap of speculation there. Maybe he did hit it in the femoral artery, or maybe he clipped the spine or pelvis, causing disability and pain until this guy decided to motor up and maybe, maybe not, put it out of its misery. An animal can take a huge amount of trauma before dying, much of it spent in great pain. I doubt very much this guy was concerned about the humane death of a wolf, judging by the fact it took 5 shots before he hit it. Legality aside, I have yet to see a hunters ed program teach “shoot ’til it drops”. I don’t care what species you’re hunting, you shouldn’t be allowed to shoot at an animal unless you do your absolute best to kill it quickly and humanely.

  157. avatar Wilderness Muse says:

    Jay,
    Jay,

    Sooooooooo…… pain and suffering apply to human taking of wildlife, and should be avoided. I agree completely.

    Now what do you have to say about wolves slowly killing an elk (cow, sheep or horse) – and eating it while it is still alive and kicking, or maybe just abandoning it before death, even though the wolves have eaten maybe twenty pounds of flesh.

    I know it is a just a predator doing what it was designed in nature to do, but do you also see why some people may be compelled to fell as William says above……”am I the only person that sees this as really ugly hatred of a predator?”

  158. avatar Cindy says:

    I want to invite you all to join me in a meditation on Sunday, November 15, 2009. I will be doing it from my home here in a rich Wyoming forest, a few miles from Yellowstone. I believe it will be called “Honoring the Hunted..a quiet mediation for Wolf”. I’ve chosen the day before the new Moon as that is when the night is darkest. The intention is to honor the Wolf as it deserves and to move toward the light of the full moon on December 2. This is for those that want to lift up the spirit of all Wolves, this is not a time of bashing the other side. Ralph can provide my email if you are interested. I’ll be asking for your participation through spirit. And please, I’m only using the forum right now because I see many folks that care deeply about Wolves as I do and are feeling the need to be a part of a group that shares those same feelings. There are more details available. Again, not an event to “go to” but you can certainly be there (forget it Josh ,no explanation).

  159. avatar Mike says:

    ++• Hunters may not use a motorized vehicle (including OHVs)
    or aircraft to concentrate, drive, rally, stir-up, corral, or harass
    game animals. On public lands it is illegal to operate a motorized
    wheeled vehicle off legal routes (including game retrieval++

    Trust me when I tell you that this is what the Deputy Chief of MFWP was concerned about this afternoon. He was in disbelief at the article.

    ++There are decent respectable hunters out there,lets not forget. Their character whould be apparent even if they were not hunting.I myself do not care for the sss crowd or poachers.++

    Yes of course. The problem is they are the minority.

  160. avatar Jay says:

    Muse–when wolves develop thumbs and the intellect to use rifles to dispatch their prey, and get jobs to buy their new WSM 300’s, I will hold them to the same standards as people. But for now, they are limited to killing by running down and grabbing with teeth, which is a messy job. Go eat a plate of spagetti without using your hands, and you’ll get the picture.

  161. avatar Elk275 says:

    April

    “I read between lines, took 4 shots, missed, I say he was riding the atv while shooting those 4 shots, maybe he got off his ass for the final kill shot, in the back no less. And if he killed it in lion cloth and bow, if it was collared, I still do not like he killed it. No collared wolves should be shot, period.”

    I have been gone two hours trying to collect some professional fees owned me, look at what I have missed. Miss informed little boys and girls at play.

    April the above statement is one on the most uninformed that I have ever read. “I say he was riding the atv while shooting those 4 shots” The hunter was using a 300 Remington Ultra mag. If he was using a 165 grain bullet at 3300 feet per second which is the ballistics on this rifle, then rifle was generating 4100 foot pounds of energy. (Nosler reloading guide No. 6). It would not mpossible to shoot from a ATV with with foreward motion but…………….. The scope would slice through his brow blood everywhere and I doubt that he could hold the gun after firing. A rifle with that velocity and foot pounds of energy needs to be held very firm in either the standing, knelling, siting or prone postition. Yes, I have shot a 300 Remington Ultra Mag and they are a bit unpleasant to shot. It is a 30 caliber rifle that is over bored for the caliber. There is no way I or any body would shoot a gun in this position. April, I realize that you live in CA, but, I have several rifles that produce this type of energy a 338 Win Mag and a 375 H & H you are welcome to try to do what you said he did.

    I do not have time to write at the moment but DID THE REPORTER get the story correct. After, I read this article in the coffee shop this morning a friend of mind who has relatives adjaent to the historical ranch where the grizzly mauling occured on opening day, he had talk with them early this morning and told me there were a nunber of factual errors in that story.

    Do not believe everything that you read, April. I could not wait to see what I would be reading on this forum when I got home. It smoldered for the morning and early afternoon and now has become a crown fire.

  162. avatar JEFF E says:

    Montana code.
    So he may or may not have broken the law depending on several factors.
    87-3-125. Restrictions on use of motor vehicles while hunting. (1) Except as provided in 87-2-803(4)(a)(iii), a person, while hunting game animals or game birds, may not use a motor-driven vehicle other than on an established road or trail unless the person has reduced a big game animal to possession and cannot easily retrieve the big game animal. In that case a motor-driven vehicle may be used to retrieve the big game animal, except in areas where more restrictive regulations apply or where the landowner has not granted permission. After the retrieval, the motor-driven vehicle is to be returned to an established road or trail by the shortest possible route. For purposes of safety and allowing normal travel, a motor-driven vehicle may be parked on the roadside or directly adjacent to a road or trail.
    (2) A person, while hunting game animals or game birds, may not drive or attempt to drive, run or attempt to run, molest or attempt to molest, flush or attempt to flush, or harass or attempt to harass a game animal or game bird with the use or aid of any motor-driven vehicle.
    (3) A person, while hunting game animals or game birds, may not drive through any retired cropland, brush area, slough area, timber area, open prairie, or unharvested or harvested cropland, except upon an established road or trail, unless written permission has been given by the landowner and is in possession of the hunter.
    (4) A person may not use a self-propelled vehicle to intentionally concentrate, drive, rally, stir up, or harass wildlife, except predators of this state. This subsection does not apply to landowners and their authorized agents engaged in the immediate protection of that landowner’s property.
    (5) The restrictions in subsections (1) through (3) on motor-driven vehicle use off an established road or trail apply only to hunting on state or private land, not to hunting on federal land unless the federal agency specifically requests or approves state enforcement.

  163. avatar josh sutherland says:

    April it was the very first time I have ever hunted big game, and he did not suffer at all, but I find it ironic that you put LOL after you stated me shooting that deer, he was not wounded because hence he died.. Kind of odd…. ?

    Cindy I like deer meat. I dont need you to tell me what to eat and what not to eat.. 🙂

  164. avatar Cindy says:

    Josh – I don’t like you to hunt and you can’t tell me what to like or not like. See my friend, this line of thinking gets us nowhere. Plus it’s a wee bit childish. But it does enlighten me to know you hunt for the kill not for survival, because that lame ass excuse has seen better days.

  165. avatar Save bears says:

    Mike

    Let me get this straight, you are saying ethical hunters are in the minority?

  166. avatar Mike says:

    Save Bears –

    That’s correct.

  167. avatar Save bears says:

    Mike,

    Then I will say, you are incorrect….based on my on ground experience and working with the agency..

  168. avatar Save bears says:

    Now if you think you are correct, please provide some statistics to prove your point, there are tens of thousands of hunters that take to the field every year in Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, and we read how many stories of things being done wrong? How many are prosecuted each year, how many cases are actually found to be illegal hunting?

  169. avatar April Clauson says:

    Josh, LOL was meant for you the mighty hunter!

    Cindy, I will be there with the night in spirit, wish I could be there in person. I love all wild life but the wolf is most precious to me. When you hold a wolf at 1 month old, feed it, help it poo, and listen to it’s first howl with the pack, it is just so magical, all the world is good in that moment….and yes before anyone ask, I have…..a good friend of mine, Tanya Littlewolf runs wolf mountain sanctuary, in California. Once you learn of the wolf from a true indian, you may understand a bit more than some…

  170. avatar Cindy says:

    April – We need to talk on our personal emails, how do we do that?
    Cindy

  171. avatar josh sutherland says:

    Mike I would have to disagree with you, along with a couple million other hunters.

  172. avatar April Clauson says:

    Save bears Says:
    October 29, 2009 at 5:21 PM

    Now if you think you are correct, please provide some statistics to prove your point, there are tens of thousands of hunters that take to the field every year in Montana, Wyoming, Idaho, Washington, Oregon, and we read how many stories of things being done wrong? How many are prosecuted each year, how many cases are actually found to be illegal hunting?

    _____________

    And how many do hunt illegal and never get caught, can not tell me that does not happen. In AZ when I was in the area last month with bow hunters for elk, I was there 4 days and never once saw any rangers, cops, nada, just like the whole summer, in the back country there is no one to see and report these incidents. I guarantee there is a lot more illegal hunting that is never prosocuted, SSS…

  173. avatar April Clauson says:

    Cindy, I am on face book just plug my name in and ask to be invited, I may take a day or two to get back with you. Would be nice to discuss wild life matters with someone in agreement. But nice to hear the other side to, gives a real outlook on what goes on in the west…

  174. avatar jerryB says:

    SB and Mike…..
    I’d say it’s a 50/50 split.
    I no longer hunt, but I’m in hunting areas all year and I see the damage, vandalism or whatever that is caused by hunters.
    There is so much poaching going on that FWP, with limited enforcement, won’t even respond to “piles of fresh deer and elk parts in the summertime.”
    I could go on and on with incidents .
    Maybe we need a poll here on Ralph’s site..
    Question: What % of hunters do you consider ethical?

  175. avatar April Clauson says:

    Cindy, plug in wolf mountain sanctuary in lucerne valley, ca and go to their site, you will enjoy it, it is kinda out dated on up to date info, but that is due to Tanya and her daughter being so busy with the wolves!

  176. avatar Save bears says:

    April,

    How many of those camo clad macho hunters were actually Law Enforcement? I didn’t say it does not happen, I said, it is not the majority as Mike has alluded to, I know for a fact, there are several hundreds of agents in the hunting areas every single day during hunting season, I know for a fact that states devote over 50% of their law enforcement to undercover activities during hunting season, now of course the number is quite a bit higher in Oregon as all State Patrol officers are also game wardens.

    Does SSS happen,….Yes it does

    Does Poaching happen….Yes it does

    Is it the Majority…..No, it is not

  177. avatar Cindy says:

    Great April – I’ll do it.
    I am always trying my hardest to be able to “get to the table” when it comes to wildlife issues. I’ve had a couple of opportunities to talk to our Governor Dave here in Wyoming, and it’s so helpful to understand his prospective first. Not that his mind will be changed on the wolf issue. I’ve learned from pros like Nathan Varley, Doug Smith and the Western Wolf Coalition, that you must be able to meet in the middle to solve these problems. But darn it, macho hunters drooling over dead wolves still gets my blood boiling, and the worst part is – they know it. But, then I stop and breath and remember, the grand design is so much bigger than me, the hunter, or the wolf.

  178. avatar Save bears says:

    Jerry,

    As much as I respect your opinion, I am going to disagree with you, because I know better..

  179. avatar April Clauson says:

    Well All, it has been fun, boss just said I can go home, so I am. I am going to try to put all this killing of wild life, and all other rotten new’s in the world away for a few days…Blessing to all….

    WOLVES, GRIZZLIES AND BISON WILL PREVAIL IN THE LONG RUN IF WE WRITE OUR POWERS TO BE, BOYCOTT SHOPS AND STORES AND RANCH’S THAT KILL WOLVES, WRITE WLS, F&G, WHEN YOU SEE THEM TALK TO THEM ABOUT YOUR CONCERNS!!!! MAKE THIS STUFF KNOW TO OTHER STATES, LET US GET MOVING ON OUR VOICES TO BE HEARD, NOT JUST RANCHERS, OUTFITTERS AND HUNTERS!

  180. avatar Elk275 says:

    April

    “And how many do hunt illegal and never get caught, can not tell me that does not happen. In AZ when I was in the area last month with bow hunters for elk, I was there 4 days and never once saw any rangers, cops, nada, just like the whole summer, in the back country there is no one to see and report these incidents. I guarantee there is a lot more illegal hunting that is never prosocuted, SSS…

    How many speed and never get caught, how many drive over the limit and never get caught, how many smoke pot and never get caught. How many of us have had something stolen and never had the thief caught, there are those who have been murder and the killer has never been caught. I have been checked in the field but not often. It is other hunters who turn in law breakers. If you never saw a ranger or game warden well there are just so many. Do you want to be in the wood, mountains, desert or on a river and have the same law enforcement as a city? If so then stay in the city.

  181. avatar Layton says:

    Interesting,

    Some guy shoots a wolf — talks to a reporter and a story gets printed.

    Green necks come out of the woodwork in droves — exercising furiously in their normal fashion, mainly jumping to conclusions!!

    Other folks try to point out that data is possibly incomplete and inaccurate — maybe we should wait and see before we schedule the hanging.

    New acronym coined for hunters — changed from normal “rednecked Cabela’s Queens” to “hillbilly hunters” — someone notes that they are not ALL that way, but ethical ones are in the minority.

    Timz acts like he grew a set, challenges Save Bears to meet “any place” to discuss the “hillbilly hunters” moniker. Later he just backs down and wants to know about the fitting of a shoe.

    April wants to pick up where Timz left off — but she wants to bring cameras and a cast of extras…… maybe to make a documentary?? Maybe the documentary should be about “How to shoot a WSM from the back of a moving ATV.

    All this because somebody shot a dog?? In a LEGAL season.

    Maybe I should go meditate with Cindy.

  182. avatar Mike says:

    ++Does SSS happen,….Yes it does

    Does Poaching happen….Yes it does

    Is it the Majority…..No, it is not
    ++

    Your definition of “ethical” is a bit too narrow. I consider using a vehicle to spot animals before shooting them as unethical unless the hunter is disabled. I consider baiting and trapping completely unethical on all levels. I consider animal calls to be unethical in some situations. I consider the use of multiple dogs to tree bears and cats to be unethical.

    These are all things that IMHO are greatly antiquated in a modern society with advanced weaponry/technology and a gigantic population when compared to areas where big game animals can live.

    Those things were not antiquated when this country’s inhabitants needed food and fur to survive 100 years back and more. We did them for a reason. We caused suffering on other creatures because we had to.

    Now? Now it’s just a sick kick.

  183. avatar Layton says:

    “Those things were not antiquated when this country’s inhabitants needed food and fur to survive 100 years back and more. We did them for a reason. We caused suffering on other creatures because we had to.”

    So Mike — you’re a vegetarian (vegan?) that uses no meat, leather, or wool?? And of course you don’t fish — right??

  184. avatar Save bears says:

    Mike,

    well beings I am disabled, I am glad to hear your position on ATV’s now of course the rest of your post is pure and simple opinion concerning ethics, and of course we all know that ethics are nothing more than opinions and everybody has an opinion…what you or I feel is ethical,, is not what another feels is ethical and to say that it is just a sick kick, is your opinion, now me of course as I have not bought beef for a long time now and depend on being able to take an animal to feed my family, I guess we are just going to have to disagree..

  185. avatar josh sutherland says:

    Mike you make some valid points but some of your points are so far in the night it is laughable. So someone driving down a dirt road towards their camp sees some elk on a distant ridge, stops and glasses them, sees a great bull. Exits his vehicle and stalks closer the elk and kills it is now an “unethical” hunter. That is almost laughable.

    And all these “hunters” you guys talk about that break laws and poach animals are NOT hunters they are CRIMINALS…. A huge difference, and all hunters I know would turn anyone guilty of these crimes over to law enforcement as quickly as possible.

  186. avatar Mike says:

    ++Mike you make some valid points but some of your points are so far in the night it is laughable. So someone driving down a dirt road towards their camp sees some elk on a distant ridge, stops and glasses them, sees a great bull. Exits his vehicle and stalks closer the elk and kills it is now an “unethical” hunter. That is almost laughable. ++

    Yes it is. Spotting elk from your car to hunt is lazy unless you are disabled for some reason.

    ++
    And all these “hunters” you guys talk about that break laws and poach animals are NOT hunters they are CRIMINALS…. A huge difference, and all hunters I know would turn anyone guilty of these crimes over to law enforcement as quickly as possible.
    ++

    I know those guys are out there, but they aren’t the majority.

  187. avatar Mike says:

    ++well beings I am disabled, I am glad to hear your position on ATV’s now of course the rest of your post is pure and simple opinion concerning ethics, and of course we all know that ethics are nothing more than opinions and everybody has an opinion…what you or I feel is ethical,, is not what another feels is ethical and to say that it is just a sick kick, is your opinion, now me of course as I have not bought beef for a long time now and depend on being able to take an animal to feed my family, I guess we are just going to have to disagree..++

    I don’t see much disagreement. I prefer hunting wild game ethically to beef. There’s a big difference between hunting for dinner and blood sport, which is what this guy did with the ATV and his Scarface impression.

  188. avatar jerryB says:

    SB…..depends on “what” is considered ethical. I know you wouldn’t consider stepping out of the truck and shooting as being ethical. Some would say that’s OK. Some consider it ethical to use any caliber weapon . I think you know that lots of deer are found that were wounded with a .22 and died later…When I hunted, New Mexico had a “minimum caliber” requirement for big game…don’t know if those laws still exist.
    I don’t consider those that leave trash strewn to be ethical.
    Shooting cats out of trees…is that ethical?
    Too many interpretations of what’s ethical!
    I’ll stick to my 50/50 and believe me, I’d like to be proven wrong.

  189. avatar Save bears says:

    100% on the money Josh, poaching is a crime and when a criminal takes an animal, it is a crime, and criminals don’t hunt…when people finally understand a poacher is not a hunter, the world will be far better off!

  190. avatar Wilderness Muse says:

    Jay,

    I understand what you say, but you miss the finer point of the comment. Wolves don’t always clean up their plates, and sometimes may not be picky about the selection of the meal (they are opportunists and don’t know what not to eat because ownership) or the number (surplus killing). Rather it is the fate of their partially eaten, and maybe still living, and in pain, meal, which some people find distasteful (forgive the pun).

    Some segment of the public, for reasons we have discussed before, doesn’t like the waste, or the prolonged death, that sometimes ocurrs to accomodate the presence of wolves. Carrying the point further, there are those who want to control the numbers and it has ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with desire to get a trophy wolf, or hunt an elk or deer.

  191. avatar Mike says:

    Save Bears that’s an awful glossy and flowery view of the situation.

  192. avatar Save bears says:

    Mike again, please provide some statistics to prove your claim, they are in the minority, the Montana tip line processes over 100,000 calls a year about violations and ethics concerns.

  193. avatar Mike says:

    The bottom line is that people in the woods with guns poach animals. And who usually is carrying a rifle in the woods? It isn’t hikers or bird watchers.

  194. avatar Save bears says:

    Working in the field for 14 years allowed me to see past the bullshit printed in the news and the propaganda posted on the conservation websites Mike, call it what you will..

  195. avatar Save bears says:

    So what Mike, all three activities are legal, and believe me, I have run into plenty of hikers and bird watchers carrying guns..

  196. avatar josh sutherland says:

    So Mike if I see a buck feeding on a hillside, I should keep driving because it would be unethical to pursue that animal? I can honestly say that is the first time I have ever heard that statement… LOL So do you take off on foot from the hotel room?? Thats a long walk to the hunting grounds.. I guess keep your eyes directly on the road in front of you cause you dont want to be tempted.. So Mike then I would assume you feel it is unethical to bring your animal home in a vehicle, because those before us did not have that luxury… Or do you believe in buffet style ethics??

  197. avatar Save bears says:

    Anyway, it is round and round we go, another day, and no situations solved, I am sure it will be the same tomorrow as it was the same yesterday, nobody has changed their mind…

  198. avatar Elk275 says:

    Mike you live in Chicago, why don’t come out west and go along with someone hunting. Do not express your opinions but just observe, it does not come easy or cheap or fast. Enjoy and learn. Maybe, Maybe you will emerge from your darkest. If you do not want to do it fine, but let others make there choice.

    I have found that people who have been removed from hunting for a number of generations, one of those people has a curiously about the sport and will want to try it and then he/she becomes hook. What I have found in the last 10 years it is not men but women.

    Two weeks ago, I go I went hunting with my 85 year old father for the last time. We had handicapped stickers on truck. We were driving down a dirt road on a Block Management Area in Western Montana and drove into 7 or 8 antelope and 3 bucks. It took time. Time for him to get out of the truck, time for him to chamber a round and for me to range the antelope at 297 yards. He shot once and missed and shot again and missed. He got back in the truck and and said “well I missed”, he is old and slow and after 50 years of hunting together this will be his last time. Those are years and trips that will be with me to the end and with to the end.

    If he would have missed two more times he would have been in the same situations as the “wolf killer”. Were we illegal or unethical, no. But, if that what you or others want to call it so be it.

  199. avatar Mike says:

    ++Mike you live in Chicago, why don’t come out west and go along with someone hunting. Do not express your opinions but just observe, it does not come easy or cheap or fast. Enjoy and learn. Maybe, Maybe you will emerge from your darkest. If you do not want to do it fine, but let others make there choice.++

    Elk – I grew up in the nothwoods, and hunting was a big part of that. Please do not think that because someone disagrees with you means they lack experience in hunting.

    ++Two weeks ago, I go I went hunting with my 85 year old father for the last time. We had handicapped stickers on truck. We were driving down a dirt road on a Block Management Area in Western Montana and drove into 7 or 8 antelope and 3 bucks. It took time. Time for him to get out of the truck, time for him to chamber a round and for me to range the antelope at 297 yards. He shot once and missed and shot again and missed. He got back in the truck and and said “well I missed”, he is old and slow and after 50 years of hunting together this will be his last time. Those are years and trips that will be with me to the end and with to the end. ++

    Sorry to hear about that, elk. But you don’t have to kill something to bond, right? A simple drive through the woods, maybe a cup of coffee by the campfire, enjoying nature just to enjoy nature.
    I hope you and your dad get to experience the outdoors together again.

  200. avatar Mike says:

    ++Working in the field for 14 years allowed me to see past the bullshit printed in the news and the propaganda posted on the conservation websites Mike, call it what you will..++

    So hunters don’t poach? STrange. Most of the big poaching cases have been outfitters, clients, etc. All hunters.

  201. avatar Mike says:

    ++So Mike if I see a buck feeding on a hillside, I should keep driving because it would be unethical to pursue that animal? I can honestly say that is the first time I have ever heard that statement… ++

    Yes, that is road hunting, and that’s what slobs do when they are fortunate enough not to be disabled.

  202. avatar Elk275 says:

    Mike

    “Sorry to hear about that, elk. But you don’t have to kill something to bond, right? A simple drive through the woods, maybe a cup of coffee by the campfire, enjoying nature just to enjoy nature.
    I hope you and your dad get to experience the outdoors together again.”

    Mike, know we do not have to kill something to have a good time but we went hunting and the object to kill and antelope. But that is what we wanted to do, it is our culture and our way of life. We were legally licensed and you are free to do what you want. If everyone when hunting then it would take a lifetime to draw a license. That is the way it is.

  203. avatar josh sutherland says:

    Mike your comical… Your sense of ethics are slightly screwy, you have no problem condemning the large majority of hunters being slob etc, yet you unethically condemn those hunters without any evidence, which shows a lack of character, but you can have your opinion. Like I said, you must enjoy the buffet style of ethics… Pick and choose what you like, ignore the rest..

  204. avatar Mike says:

    Josh, do you consider trapping ethical?

  205. avatar josh sutherland says:

    Mike, just one quick question just to humor me. Following your line of thinking all areas that are within eye sight of a road then should be closed to hunting if we are to promote an ethical way of hunting. That would pretty much shut down the large majority of all hunting areas, specifically antelope country since you can see for miles… Another humor question, say I park my truck and I am just glassing a distant hill side off to theside of the truck, the truck is not running but is turned off.. Can I ethically pursue an elk or deer at this point? Mike these scenarios could go on forever.. 🙂 Keep hunting in the midwest where all you need is a 40 acre woodlot behind 7-eleven to hunt the local whitetail buck.

  206. avatar josh sutherland says:

    No I dont because it causes undo suffering for an animal for hours on end intentionally…

  207. avatar catbestland says:

    Wildernes Muse said,

    “Now what do you have to say about wolves slowly killing an elk (cow, sheep or horse) – and eating it while it is still alive and kicking, or maybe just abandoning it before death, even though the wolves have eaten maybe twenty pounds of flesh.”

    I would say that wolves are doing what they are designed to do- kill, and by doing so they make a very important contribution to the ecosystems. Humans on the other hand are supposed to be an animal of higher intelligence. Intelligent enough to know that the barbaric killing of animals out of hatred is not only immoral, a poor example of manhood but stupid as well. It can only have bad consequences on so many levels, including the health of the planet which compromises the health of mankind. Are they less intelligent than the “beasts” they seek to destroy?

  208. avatar Dawn says:

    To Save Bears,
    Yes it was a putdown because to see a sign like that in the year 2009 is sad . Can we say redneck ?? Out here in Wyoming some trucks have save a elk kill a wolf, gotta love the narrow minds that are driving that ride. I will never understand killing a animal just for hide or haterd, typical human nature and control .

  209. avatar Mike says:

    Dawn the people with those bumper stickers feel that way because they are lost and confused.

  210. avatar Mike says:

    Josh –

    How is it a challenge to shoot “antelope”(they are called pronghorn, BTW and are unique to America) with high powered rifles and 100% visibility?

  211. avatar Ryan says:

    JerryB,

    Take that poll, Take a roll of TP.. See which is more benefical in the long run.

    Mike,

    Its pretty obivious that your anti hunting, yet you try to use some justification to make your position palletable. Don’t bullshit yourself, because your not bullshitting anyone here. Call a spade a spade, its makes you a tad more believiable.

    Cat, Dawn, others..

    The wolf season/limited poaching isn’t going to make the GYE/rocky mountain wolf population go extinct. It may be unpalletable to ya’ll, but if we as a group hunters and non hunters focus on real issues that threaten the enviroment actual progress can be made. Instead we all fight each other over trivial shit while the big corporations rape and pillage our lands.

  212. avatar josh sutherland says:

    Mike,

    We refer to them as “speed goats” and other names also.. It is quite hard actually, have you ever done it? At times its hard to get within 700-800 yards, if you wanna meet up in WY we can go give it a whirl if you like… 🙂

  213. avatar Jay says:

    Muse, I guarantee you that on averate, wolves utilize their kills far in excess of what humans do…ever hear of a hunter cracking the femur to eat the marrow, or eating noses, rib bones, ears, etc.? I see the point you’re trying to make, but every criticism people make of wolves (cruel, wasteful, etc.), we are much worse at. We are the planets biggest hypocrites.

  214. avatar Mike says:

    Ryan – I’ve stated before here that as the population and sprawl has increased over the years along with technology, it has forced me to rethink the place of hunting in a crowded, modern society. I’ve also said sustenance hunting definitely has a place. As we crowd in and chew up habitat, I see it as less and less important or necessary. Also, calling something a “past time” doesn’t mean you are doing the right thing.

    If you like to eat deer meat, go for it. It’s certainly better than beef and no doubt better for the environment if you are using lead-free shot. But lets not pretend that it’s some divine right, and that because people did something 200 years ago that it still applies today and 500 years from now just by default. If mankind does not question it’s behaviour, it will never evolve, wether hunting, health care reform or what we drive and eat. If we can’t make adjustments after careful analysis, we won’t improve as a race.

  215. avatar gline says:

    No william huard you are not the only one.

  216. avatar Wyo Native says:

    Mike said,

    “How is it a challenge to shoot “antelope”(they are called pronghorn, BTW and are unique to America)”

    Technically you are correct, but Pronghorn are colloquially referred to as “Antelope”, “Pronghorn”, or even “Pronghorn Antelope”.

    Many people even use slang names, such as “Goat” or “Speed Goat”.

  217. avatar Elk275 says:

    Mike

    “I’ve also said sustenance hunting definitely has a place”

    There is only isolated cases of sustenance hunting. I just went to the store and bought some food. In the reduced meat section hamburger was $1.49 a pound. The cow elk that I have shot and had processed, yielded approximately 135 pounds of finished meat. When one has a processing plant do the cutting approximately 75% of the meat is hamburger and the rest roasts and steak. I can buy steak at the reduce section for $2.99 a pound.

    Let’s do the math, 75% of 135 pounds at $1.49 a pound is $150 for the hamburger and 25% of the 135 pounds at $2.99 pounds is $100. The value of an buthered elk is $250. It cost me over that much for gas, food, licenses and lodging for 4 or 5 days. Elk hunting does not pay; it is what I like to do; it is what I find enjoyment in. Elk meat is superior to beef but protein is protein.

    You love coming west for your vacation wouldn’t it be cheaper for you not to come or maybe drive an hour or two from home and stay in a B & B. By only going a short distance from home you would be saving carbon emissions.

  218. avatar Mike says:

    Glad you enjoy it, Elk275. That does not mean that others won’t find your idea of “enjoyment” unpleasant.

  219. avatar Dawn says:

    Ryan I think you are right, lot more issues about this then hunters . Alot of people have moved to the West from the East Coast and I am one of them, this is a problem ! Way too many people not enough land for wildlife . They just bulit another golf course, like we need more golf courses that can only be used 2 mths out of the year ! Coming from the East Coast I have spoke to ranchers and hunters because they are born and raised here in the West . Gotta listen to all views . Hunting will always be part of the West,maybe views have changed in the past 20 yrs but from talking to people it is part of thier lives and truthfully I would rather eat elk them get meat at a grocey store anyday . And if this guy took 3 or 4 or 10 shots the bottom line is if he broke the law then he will hopefully get his, if he didn’t then he got his trophy , hate that word !

  220. Dawn and Mike,

    Have you read George Wuerthner’s ideas about an overpopulated West and the idea that we can’t have very much wildlife? Subdivisions speading, etc.?

    He doesn’t believe it, and all you have to do to understand him is to compare the amount of wildlife in “overpopulated” California to that in empty North Dakota. North Dakota is just full all kinds of large wild mammals, right?

  221. avatar Wilderness Muse says:

    Ralph,

    Do you have an article or online writing that you could refer us to for details of Wuertherner’s ideas on this?

  222. avatar Cordell says:

    Ralph,

    What data are you using to make your claim for the relative wildlife populations of CA and ND? I’m not aware of any shortage of wildlife in ND. When was the last time you were there?
    To answer your question, Yes, ND is “full of large wild animals” relative to it’s size and available habitat. Here’s a short list for you – whitetail and mule deer, pronghorn, bighorn sheep, moose, elk, black bear, coyote, bobcat, cougar. I grew up in ND, still have family there. My hometown, on the western Missouri Breaks, has had moose and black bear ambling through and a number of cougar sightings nearby.

  223. Wilderness Muse,

    I’m sure it’s out there. I’ll ask George to send me something. I came by the idea directly from him. About 15 years ago he took me up on the hill above Livingston, MT, where he lived, and showed me how little of the country was really occupied by houses, including second homes, compared with the total land area. He also showed me how much of what was not developed was way below its potential for wildlife due to one thing — cattle.

    I’ve thought about it ever since, and general waste it is to subsidize most ranches to preserve wildlife habitat because there would more wildlife habitat if the ranch disappeared.

  224. Cordell,

    I’m not talking about a game shortage in North Dakota. I know all these animals are present and some abundant.

    I am not at all familiar with the state on the ground, however.

    My point is not about North Dakota, however. I do know that North Dakota doesn’t have 10 or 20 times the wildlife density of California per square mile, but that’s what you’d expect if population density of people was as big a factor as a lot of folks claim it is.

  225. avatar Wyo Native says:

    Ralph,

    I completely disagree with the concept that sprawl doesn’t hurt wildlife because houses take up little of the overall landscape or habitat.

    If this were the case how would housing be any different than oil and gas drilling? The wells on the Anticline and Jonah field only take up a small percentage of the total land in the area.

    Both scenarios push wildlife into marginal habitat especially on winter ranges. Both scenarios put more stress on wintering wildlife via traffic, humans, dogs, etc.

  226. avatar Mike says:

    Ralph –

    Ralph – I respect George and like his work. But I disgaree with him on this. Take it from someone who lives in an area where sprawl completely removed habitat. This is why I often say that ranches are better than sprawl, even though it’s controversial and most ranchers are anti-wildlife. You have to look at sprawl as not just a clump of hosues, but rather with each house having a “satellite” effect and a series of concentric rings. There’s the “pet impact” ring – dogs chasing wildlife, cats eating birds etc. If there’s a garage, there’s going to be a big 4×4 or an ATV which will be used on the trails(or illegally). On top of that you put in air pollution from increased traffic, increased CO2 emissions, toxic lawn care products which drain into the local waterways, etc. And these houses need stores. Lots of them. This is where the strip malls come in, parked on 50 acre slabs of asphault.

    Sprawl cannot be undone. It blocks wildlife and any real chance of restoring habitat. Yes, ranching is bad and most ranchers are anti-wildlife, but their land can be bought and preserved.

    When I make the transition form midwest to open range, even despite th ranches the amount of wildlife I see compared to here is shocking – even the arid ranchlands of western North Dakota. It’s teeming with wildlife with mule deer, raptors and coyote everywhere. The amount of dead animals on the side of the road jumps about 20x even though there’s less cars in that part of the country.

    Condos aren’t good wildlife habitat.

    I don’t eat beef and I don’t support ranching. I’d love to see the ranches bought out. But Ican tell you that once sprawl comes in, that’s it. It’s over.

  227. WyoNative

    I’m not in favor of sprawl. You’ve no doubt read my long tirade on the blog on the draining of the desert aquifers to feed Las Vegas sprawl.

    However, if you have to make a choice, a house takes up a small area, cattle take up and eat the grass on every square foot of the land they can negotiate.

    This is also a false choice — houses vs. ranches — in most cases.

  228. avatar Cordell says:

    Ralph,

    You said -“I do know that North Dakota doesn’t have 10 or 20 times the wildlife density of California per square mile, but that’s what you’d expect if population density of people was as big a factor as a lot of folks claim it is.”

    I’d expect wildlife density to coincide with the amount of useable habitat.

  229. avatar Save bears says:

    Mike,

    You sure like that word “Most” Now you have said “Most” hunters are unethical and “Most” ranchers are anti-wildlife

    So tell me, do you know “Most” ranchers and “Most” hunters?

  230. avatar Richie,NJ says:

    About slaughter houses:
    Somebody mention slaughter houses for horses, in my opinion it would be best to shoot an old horse or bring in a vet to put the horse down. My reason is,do you know how scared an animal gets when it is taken away from the only environment the animal knows ? They have senses and feelings, they can sense something is wrong. Then in the slaughter house , the horse is terrified what is going on, I do not think anybody would want to go through with that. Then nobody wants these slaughter houses in their back yard,can you guess why? I think their is a very simple answer to that one. As for the wolves that got killed, Ralph is correct more about the rancher than anything else, plus the money the tags brought in.When their is less than a million people in MT, they need money and what a perfact way but to sell tags to hunt wolves,kills two birds with one stone. Such a sad story, well defenders is putting an little clip in times square on thanksgiving. Very good now all the families and their children will see first hand what is going on in the rockies,now will get a political outcry. Happy Thanksgiving .

  231. Cordell,

    You’re right. My argument is that there is a lot more usable wildlife habitat in California than most people think.

    I don’t know, but there might be less in North Dakota (could be wrong on this).

  232. avatar Mike says:

    ++However, if you have to make a choice, a house takes up a small area, cattle take up and eat the grass on every square foot of the land they can negotiate.++

    Ralph, look at the places with the least houses and less people, then look at the places with more houses and more people. Than tell me where you would rather go wildlife watching.

  233. avatar Jay says:

    Gotta disagree Ralph–I’m not defending cattle or ranching, but having cows around does not preclude having wildlife. Lots of ranches also provide refuge for deer, elk, etc., whereas how often do you see elk herds in subdivisions? They may not be the majority, but there are ranchers out there that are happy and willing to share their land with the native critters.

  234. avatar Elk275 says:

    I am working for once and will go hunting tomorrow, maybe mountain sheep depends if I feel like climbing up hills.

    But,

    If a rancher owns the land and most ranches in Montana the rancher does own the land with a very small portiion leased either from the federal or state goverment, there are some exceptions in certain places. Then what they do on there property is there business. There are exceptions one can not grow hemp or elk to shoot, thank god.

    Trying to remove cattle from private land is not going to happen.

  235. Wilderness Muse, Mike and all,

    George Wuerthner just sent me a copy of his essay, “Cows or Condos.”

    I put it up as a new post.
    http://wolves.wordpress.com/2009/10/31/condos-or-cows-neither/

  236. avatar catbestland says:

    I live next to an exclusive development near Telluride Colorado. It is almost 7000 acres, most of which is kept green and designated as wildlife habitat. It is surrounded by National Forest. Formerly, it was a cattle ranch. Even old timers agree that there is much more deer and elk in the area now since the cattle have left. The developers immediately took down hundreds of miles of barb-wire, which was a boost to the wildlife. The homes are clustered around the golf course. The very few (and with the economy there may not be any more) residents and guests apparently don’t mind the herds of deer and elk on their golf course.

    The only problem they seem to have (aside from the fact that they may go broke) is that cattle from the neighboring national forest grazing allotments continue to break down the fences and help themselves to the smooth fairways and sand wallows they seem to think exists for them. I am trying to convince the naturalist that it would be better for them to lease the allotments themselves instead of having to pay to repair the fences and damage to the golf course so often. We are right on top of the Uncompahgre Plateau and it is also a perfect habitat for wolves if we can get the cattle out of there. So in this case I believe development is better for wildlife than cows.

  237. avatar Mike says:

    Cat – the only reason that development stops is because of public land. Out here there is no public land so the development continues for dozens of miles in all directions.

  238. avatar Dawn says:

    Thanks Ralph for the imput I will look into that, cattle major problem . HUGE ! But I know nobody cares but my Yanks are beating the Phils OH YEAH !

  239. avatar Dawn says:

    Just read the article Ralph that you posted and makes sense . Thank you for the infor and this is why I come back here to learn so thanks ! By the way the Yanks are still winning .

  240. avatar Wilderness Muse says:

    [I had intended to post this comment on this thread yesterday, but had the one open with George’s article at the same time, so inadvertently posted there. here it is with slight amendment and update]

    As presented in his article, George, for the most part, makes a very compelling case. Cows and condos are both bad for the environment (plants and wildlife) of the rural West. Both need to be controlled as much as possible. The only element missing from the discussion is the economics of both – jobs, income and stability for those who wish to live here, or thos who have lived here for generations. Therein lies the rub.

    Co-existence of increasing human footprints, in whatever form they take, overlaid on what was previously virgin ground has its problems. The West is big, with considerable federal ownership. BUT alot of it is very high elevation, rough topograpy, high salt soils, seasonally lacking water and essential vegetation for good forage. It is hostile to most of the species we as humans think are nice to have around. In short, a considerable portion of this land in federal ownership is not the kind of stuff that is inhabitable or useful for either humans or “desireable wildlife.” Is it beautiful to the eye? Yes. Is it full of natural resources we as humans think we need? Maybe, if it has oil shale, gas, possibly minerals, and that will result in its possible destruction if not in some federal protected status (NP, monuments, wilderness).

    The places people and cows like to live are often the same as are essential to wildlife for survial on a seasonal basis – critical winter habitat and unfettered migration corridors. In addition to those pesky federal grazing allotments that suck up wildlife forage, cause soil erosion and destroy vegetation, the fences, houses (the family dog running free), roads and other aspects of urban/recreational development sprawl mean annihilation for critical habitat and death for migrating animals, especially in really bad winters!

    As a young graduate student I, and several other students, mapped critical wildlife habitat and migration corridors for the Roaring Fork Valley (Aspen) and two other drainages in Pitkin County, CO. Lower elevation (snow free longer), flat ground with some vegetation and cover along riparian zones, with adjacent moderate slope hillsides with cover for protection from winter storms are what is needed for deer and elk to survive the winter months. These are the same habitat requirements for cost-effective road beds and desirable for building condos, golf courses, and ski area parking lots. In other areas federal grazing allotments take up much of this habitat for cattle which destroy it from overuse in the summer months. Lax oversight of permittees results in drastic, and even permanant destruction of wildlife habitat as Ralph and the folks at Western Watershed Project remind us.

    As a consultant and/or employee of local and federal government early in my career I saw this pattern repeated over and over again through many Western states. In Colorado it was Aspen (altough they have done a better job of land use than most because of the uber-rich), Steamboat Springs, Estes Park, Vail Valley, Avon, and even out in Sequim, Washington. Most National Parks in the West suffer the same consequences at their borders where service communities have sprung up over the last 70 years.

    Catbestland reminded us of what is happening in Telluride (note: that’s what happens you have internationally successful jazz concert venue, beautiful scenery and an enhanced air transport system that gives Texan an easy vacation in relatively cheap Southern Colorado).

    Jackson Hole is not much different than the areas described above. Here the uber-rich have even gone so far as to have Polo grounds for their new part-year residents and retiree residents, much to the disappointment of locals (this conflict began in the late 1990’s if I recall correctly). The salvation for elk is the nearby nearby wildlife refuge. Further to the west are elk feed lots in Idaho along the state line shared with WY, in the parts of Star Valley (between the Greys and Salt River ranges) not occupied by condos and luxury homes, where moose also roam the subdivisions getting in trouble with dogs.

    And then there are the cities and towns where most of us live, acres of wildlife habitat being sucked up to accomodate growing human populations. Same issue as described above. We want to live on the low elevation, flat land with rivers, where we locate our roads, water and sewer plants, and build houses, condos and golf courses. I almost forgot NASCAR race tracks that consume thousands of acres of prime wildlife habitat, and they want to expand to the West.

    Is it fatal to all wildlife? Not always, as George apparently communicated to Ralph. It does, however, increase the opportunities for human-wildlife conflict, and we all know who loses those battles, whatever the species.

    One last war story. Some of the best mule deer specimens I have seen live within the city limits of Boulder, CO, (or at NCAR, the National Center for Atmospheric Research on the hills above) where they are prohibited from being hunted. Dogs are regularly gored by nice 5 point bucks or thumped by does protecting newborn fawns. And then, there are the racoons who will take on anything. The populations expands beyond carrying limits then they have to be “controlled” by wildlife agents.

  241. avatar Richie,NJ says:

    Comment on beef.
    Do you know it cost less to buy a double cheeseburger than a loaf of bread. Ranchers are making beef very cheap, more cows cheaper beef . Yes I believe Ralph is correct in many ways ranchers are a big problem. BLM will always side with ranchers,they have a big lobby in Washington.We who love wildlife do not have the money the ranchers have to lobby with. As for people moving in to the wilderness you must consider who will have the biggest carbon footprint. Take into account the waste products of the cows,grazing etc. People, the garbage, the water usage, the children,pets,energy per house etc.

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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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