Here is another open tread . “Have you heard any new wildlife news?” (begin Jan. 11, 2012)” 

So many wildlife comments are coming in and a lot of them are well thought out, but it is getting hard to find your way in the mass. I am now creating a new “Have you heard any interesting wildlife news” now, after about just eleven days!

Share your comments below.

Arches National Park, Utah © Ken Cole

Arches National Park, Utah © Ken Cole

 

 
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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.

598 Responses to Have you come across any interesting wildlife news? Second January thread

  1. avatar David says:

    Here’s some reporting on OR 7. He’s in good habitat, probably the best in CA.In general, the reporting in state has been positive.

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/01/11/MNPR1ML09K.DTL

  2. avatar David says:

    And here’s one about Snow Geese “over-population”. I’ve been reading reports like this for fifteen years and am skeptical of them. I don’t know if we have any idea of the primordial condition of their winter or summer grounds — what these areas were like before the wholesale slaughter of waterfowl in the 17th and 18th Centuries, or whether their presence in large numbers will restore habitat in ways that we can’t see right now. And, then, of course, there’s the problem of predators. I doubt that California’s Bald Eagles, which are still recovering from indiscriminate hunting and DDT, think there are too many Snow Geese.

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2012/01/08/MNR31MJAS5.DTL

    • avatar David says:

      Just for a little more background, the flooding of rice fields for waterfowl is about a twenty year old practice. It was spearheaded by Ducks Unlimited. Cooperation from rice growers (which are huge, highly profitable, agro-businesses)has been voluntary, and in part, designed to deflect criticism of water-intensive rice farming in a state with over-extended water resources. The program has been largely successful.

      • avatar CodyCoyote says:

        David- when I travelled extensively in Southeast Asia and Indonesia, I got intrigued by rice farming. it’s a staple obviously , and they have been doing it a very long time. I observed that many rice paddy operations were divided into four fields, or ” pools” , and water – rice plants etc rotated between them continually…flood-grow-harvest-dry – and begin all over again. What was interesting was allowing geese and ducks , Water Buffalo, and especially Carp and other fish to use the water or mudholes at particular times in the cycle. It was very holistic , all those species sustaining the rice ecosystem and water/nutrients being so efficiently used , reused, and conserved yearround.

    • avatar mad says:

      had the occasion to work with Dr Rockwell for a few field seasons up in Hudson Bay, near Churchill, Manitoba with the snow geese; banding,habitat samples, etc. great guy. he’s also working on a polar bear project in the area with a student. LOTS of polar bears in the area. trust me, they won’t all disappear by 2050 as the media and most people have been led to believe

      • avatar Frank Renn says:

        Does having a concentration of Polar bears at Churchill indicate that the world wide population is in good shape? I don`t know that much about them, just asking. Check out

        cbc ca history 2012 01 mb star in polar bears manitoba

  3. avatar Tetonbadger says:

    Looks like the pinnacle peak Pack of wolves was in Jackson on Sunday, see the Jackson hole news and guide web page for the story (sorry can’t link to it I am on my cell phone) they don’t say it was lower gros ventre just say it was 3 wolves but that sure looks like old white the collared wolf from pinnacle peak to me. I will post the link when I get a chance but it’s probably easy to google.

  4. avatar Cindy says:

    I’m late in getting in here, just posted link to other “news” thread. But I’ll repeat myself, to all pro wolf Jackson residents, let’s get in front of this news with our response to certain friends and neighbors who in my case, are starting to act a little crazy already.

  5. avatar Salle says:

    Snowy Owls Migration: Birds Moving From Arctic To Central U.S. In Search Of Food

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/11/snowy-owls-migration-central-us_n_1198043.html?ref=green

    “…many of the birds are also suffering, he said. They have come south because their favorite food – small rodents called lemmings – are in short supply in the Arctic, Robbins said.
    That comes on the heels of a year when they were abundant, which resulted a healthy population of snowy owls. They are searching for food, mostly rodents and small birds, Robbins said. He said climate change did not seem to be a factor in the migration.
    Some of the visiting owls are a third of their normal weight, Robbins said. Others, he said, have been killed by cars or overhead power lines – uncommon obstacles in the Arctic.”

    • avatar Daniel Berg says:

      Someone snapped a photograph of one on a roof in Ballard (Seattle area) the other day.

      It’s weird to watch the videos of them in the arctic tundra, then hear about one hanging out on the roof of someone’s rambler here in town.

  6. avatar Cindy says:

    WM – I’m a well known pro wolf advocate locally and I have good relationships with folks on both sides of the issue. So far the comments have been shared in a teasing manner “told you so, what you going to do now, wolves are doomed”, etc. I’ve received 4 phone calls this morning.I personally know of two people who WILL BE quoted in the headlines tomorrow saying, “we need to control these wolves down to the minimum numbers now that they are in town, hide your children, tie up the dog, etc” (some of it good reminders actually). Of course we live with the other predators close by and now we need to spend our time educating folks about this one. I’ve heard the collared white wolf was incredibly beautiful:)

    • avatar Mike says:

      Yep. So far people are acting as if China is flying gunship helicopters over the town.

      The anti-wolf propaganda spread by hunters and ranchers has infected the Northern Rockies and the reactions now just aren’t reasonable on any level.

  7. avatar Jon Way says:

    Story of “Canadian” eagles used to restock populations in the US. Interesting how there is no conversation of those “non-native” Canadian eagles…

    http://www.montrealgazette.com/technology/Canadian+transplants+bring+bald+eagle+back+from+brink/5946375/story.html

  8. avatar Salle says:

    Protesters aim to halt southwestern Alberta logging plan

    http://www.calgaryherald.com/news/alberta/Protesters+halt+southwestern+Alberta+logging+plan/5981399/story.html

    “This should be the Serengeti of Alberta and yet, it’s highly degraded for many years by logging and industrial activity. Protection is long overdue. So why we are still standing out there demanding this is just a complete mystery,” said Peter Sherrington, area resident and member of the Castle Crown Coalition, adding the area has the highest biodiversity in the province.

    “What more has to happen before it’s made into a park or protected in some meaningful way and restored?”

    Environmental groups have argued that the logging will have a negative impact on the 51 grizzly bears — an already threatened species — who call the area home, as well as on other species such as the elk, wolves and black bears, all populations that have seen diminished numbers over the years.”

    • avatar Daniel Berg says:

      It has taken decades to try and convince the right people that it’s not necessarily a good idea to log everything below the commercial timberline. It’s interesting how well-entrenched the idea is that “A healthy forest is a logged forest”.

      I just read a book called “Memoirs of a Logger” by Alfred Moltke. he was a logger who grew up in Kent in the teens, helped log out the area over by Peshastin, Leavenworth, Cashmere, etc., then was one of the founders of the Pilot Rock Lumber Company down in Oregon. He referred to old growth timber multipe times as unhealthy. He pushed hard to clear-cut, because he felt like forest service mandates to leave certain trees standing was the wrong thing to do from a conservation standpoint. To him, just logging for sustained yeild was a milestone in conservation.

  9. avatar Jeff N. says:

    Montana bison relocation hits another snag.

    Not sure if Montana has open range laws but here in AZ if a sacred cow tramples someones fence or eats their shrubbery the private property owner has no recourse to handle the situation.

    Ranchers sure do piss and moan, and god forbid if they are not catered to.

    http://missoulian.com/news/state-and-regional/bison-relocation-plan-challenged-in-montana-court/article_e698b348-3cbf-11e1-b58e-0019bb2963f4.html

  10. avatar Nancy says:

    “Open Range” might of made some sort of sense to the cattle barons 100 years ago, even 20 years ago – out here in the west – but times have changed and its really time to recognize that fact.

  11. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Animal experts save drowning wolf by giving it heart massage (but they steer clear of mouth-to-mouth): http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2085722/Animal-experts-save-drowning-wolf-giving-heart-massage-steer-clear-mouth-mouth.html#ixzz1jLWtnClD

  12. avatar TC says:

    This is short-sighted, infuriating, and a really bad idea from a disease perspective.

    http://k2radio.com/bill-would-allow-baiting-of-deer-other-big-game/

  13. avatar SEAK Mossback says:

    Critter-cam segments showing a day in the life of a brown bear (700 lb. male) in late May in the Copper River Basin. He has a pretty full day, mating with two different females and partaking of a pile of fish (presumably winter kill from a shallow lake) and a moose carcass.
    http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=wildlifenews.view_article&articles_id=540

  14. avatar mad says:

    Frank, there are currently 19 subpopulations of PBs in the world. The southern Hudson Bay population is the most continuosly studied and monitored population of all. Of the 19, there is insufficient data on 6 of the populations, 8 have some levels of decline and 5 are stable or increasing. Obviously, there are local variables for each populations that will greatly impact the survival rate for each specific population, as well as the species as a whole.

    but I will say this having been close to Rovkwell’s projects for 5 years now and personally witnessing the PB research – the claim that 2/3 of PBs will be extinct by 2050 is based on erroneous assumptions and bad statistical analysis and population estimation. This claim was out out by the “polar bear club” which is a good ‘ol boys group of Ian Stirling, Andy Derocher, Steve Amstrup and Nick Lunn. The basis for their claim is founded on the belief that PBs have little or no inherent plasticity in their behavior, and therefore will perish due to inevitable climate change.

    During the last 10 years there have been quite a few scientific papers disproving this belief and actually show how PBs are presently altering their diet due to prey availability. For example, one of Rockwell’s papers show how over the last 40 years (how long he’s worked in the Hudson Bay area), because of the explosion of snow geese, the shifting of nesting periods due to climate change, and the breakup of the ice on Hudson Bay, that the PBs are coming ashore now during breeding season of the geese when the geese can’t fly (they’ve dropped their flight feathers), and the PBs depredate the nests of eggs and whatever birds they can catch. PBs are omnivorous just like their cousins, the brown bear. Additionally, this alteration of diet and food source has been witnessed in Svalbard and in other populations around the world.

    • avatar Frank Renn says:

      Mad. well you are right about one thing, there are a lot of conflicting views concerning polar bear populations. In short I have not formed an opinion one way or another.

    • avatar SEAK Mossback says:

      mad –

      I agree (and hope) that, although polar bears appear pretty specialized, they may prove adaptable at exploiting more opportunities as you describe. However, while I am not sure about inter-species competition in Churchill area, in the one Arctic coastal area where I have spent some time (Barter Island north of ANWR), they will have a great deal of competition for any terrestrial opportunities from a substantial, resourceful grizzly bear population that appears to be doing very well in recent years (for reasons that I would speculate may be related to increasing lushness of north slope vegetation with climate change, as determined from satellite imagery). A major food source for polar bears there is carcasses from the local bowhead whale hunt and that may continue to be important in sustaining them for a long time, as long as the ice changes don’t affect the availability of whales. However, grizzlies are becoming pretty abundant along the coast and have moved onto Barter Island part of the year, and have on occasion even driven polar bears off the whale carcasses. They have even been seen out on the ice hunting seals. It is certainly possible that in areas with lots of grizzlies that inter-breeding will also occur (as has been seen further east) if polar bears spend more time on the coast, and they may be somewhat absorbed in with the grizzly population.

      I could be wrong, but I don’t foresee polar bears moving inland there and going after the same food sources that grizzlies use, although they have on occasion gone on long inland walkabouts – with one even reaching Fort Yukon, 250 air miles across the Brooks Range from the coast:
      http://alaskareport.com/news31/z51147_bear_yukon.htm

      http://www.adn.com/2008/05/03/394761/polar-bear-wasnt-only-strange.html

      Sorry, I couldn’t resist posting the second related link about another strange animal that was spotted about the same time around its old haunt at Fort Yukon . . . some may remember a recent incident in which a vociferous mustelid attacked a college professor, who in the end got the best of it.

      • avatar JB says:

        Excellent points, Seak. Of course Mad is right about the behavioral plasticity of polar bears (all Ursids?); however, their use of arctic ice allows them to fill an unoccupied niche. As you’ve pointed out, moving on to land points them in direct competition with other carnivores (grizzlies). Perhaps more importantly, it will put them in greater contact with people (especially on the coast), increasing the risks to those individuals dramatically.

        I don’t know about the statistical analyses that claim 2/3s of PBs will be gone by 2050, but I have seen the climate predictions. There is little question that PBs habitat (in the form of sea ice) will be dramatically reduced by 2050. That alone should give us pause when making optimistic forecasts about this species’ future.

        • avatar JB says:

          To be clear. Their use of sea ice allows polar bears essentially exclusive access to a food source (i.e., no/little competition with other carnivores). Loss of sea ice means higher bear densities, competition with other carnivores, and proximity to people; all of which point to a decline in populations.

          P.S. Boy would I be happy to be wrong about this one.

  15. avatar jon says:

    Remember Corey Rossi, Sarah Palin’s good friend who she helped get a job at The Alaska division of wildlife conservation, he resigned from his job because he has been involved in illegally killing bears. This should be of no shock to anyone. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out Mr. Rossi.

    http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/rossi-resignation-resonates-alaska-wildlife-biologists

    • avatar Mike says:

      That says it all. The respect for wildlife is almost nill in many of these state organizations.

      There are some very, very bad apples in the “professional” wildlife field.

  16. avatar DT says:

    SEAK Mossback

    On another thread, you had made a statement and I was wondering what you meant by that statement. I think it may have gotten lost in the barrage of postings, it was a very popular thread with a lot of information.

    *Wolves are everywhere, but they usually regulate their numbers around the density of moose, a primary prey,*

    What do you mean by this statement? How do they regulate their numbers?

    • avatar Immer Treue says:

      DT

      I’m sure Seak will provide a much more in depth explanation, and probably weave an interesting story around it, but any of a number of things could happen: some of the wolves might disperse into another area; low prey, lower pup survival rate; inter-pack rivalry for territory, with wolves killing other wolves; wolves are opportunistic hunters, and will take moose of any age given the right circumstances, but wolves are generally much more successful with moose less than two years of age, and with older moose, when moose get into double digit years. Severe winters will affect moose in a negative way, benefitting wolves in the short term…

      Wolf numbers are fairly dynamic in any given area, meaning the population number will bounce up or down based on any number of different environmental influences.

      • DT –
        I think Immer hit most of the points. I should mention that I work in fisheries, so my interest in predator-prey relationships is personal, not professional. My statement was very general because there can be a lot of variation and some exceptions. Here is a quote from the abstract of a paper (Fuller 1989) that reviews a number of studies (unfortunately I did not find a link to the entire paper):

        “A review of North American studies indicates that wolf numbers are directly related to ungulate biomass. Where deer are primary prey, territory size is related to deer density. Per capita biomass availability likely affects pup survival, the major factor in wolf population growth.”
        http://www.jstor.org/pss/3830614

        There are some basic ways that wolves can regulate their numbers in response to prey availability, generally through territoriality and intra-specific aggression (wolves killing wolves). The example above indicates that territory size is often larger where prey is scarce (fewer wolves in more area). One classic example of wolves responding to their prey has been Yellowstone where they were introduced into an extremely rich prey environment without much competition. They increased at rates that I don’t think had ever been seen, with some packs having 2 or 3 litters where more than one is rare, and packs got quite large with one briefly reaching 37 wolves I think. As the range became fully occupied, reproduction rates decreased and there was a lot of territorial strife that stopped their increase and if you look at the Yellowstone wolf annual reports you will see that a high percentage of the wolves that die were killed by other wolves. After their main prey (elk) declined substantially recently, the number of wolves in Yellowstone decreased by about 60% from 2007 to 2009 and 2010 (although I understand they have increased some in 2011). Similarly, in interior Alaska, wolves are known to be most abundant in units of high moose density around Fairbanks, despite much heavier trapping effort there. As I said, while there is an underlying relationship between available food for wolves and their numbers (as with most species), it is not always evident in all areas if there are other major factors involved — an example being perhaps Isle Royale in recent years.

        By saying “wolves are everywhere”, I did not mean to imply super-abundance, but ability to quickly move about and take advantage of opportunities, because young wolves (about age 2) are constantly recruiting out of packs and traveling in search of opportunity to join or start a pack. In one example I can think of, two wolves in a well-known pack in Denali National Park were accidentally killed by a drug over-dose while collaring, including I think the alpha male. Very shortly thereafter, a young wolf that had been tagged about 200 miles away took up one of the positions in the pack. If it had shown up earlier in the pack’s territory, it may well have been killed. However, while interior Alaska has tremendous habitat connectivity for wolves, allowing young dispersing animals to seek opportunity in almost any direction, most other states have major urban areas and agricultural areas (or in some cases expanses of habitat without sufficient prey) that restrict wolves from quickly occupying or moving about all suitable habitat.

        • avatar DT says:

          Alright. Still mulling some of those things over. A few questions.

          I have read in areas of Idaho, there is a decline in elk numbers, for whatever reasons, be it wolves or loss of habitat or disease, I’m not going to take a stand on that just yet. My question is, when the prey runs out, is it logical to think that wolves will get bold enough to get closer to towns, possibly putting pets and people in danger in search of a food supply? Or is it more reasonable that they will follow what both you and Immer Treue have explained?

          Ha. Ok that was really only one question but when more come to mind, I’ll post them.

          Thank you for the information.

          • avatar SEAK Mossback says:

            I should probably let somebody like Ma”ingnan respond who has studied wolves in populated areas and related some of types of observations. Wolves at times come in around northern towns like Whitehorse, Fairbanks, Ketchikan, Prince Rupert and villages and kill dogs (attacks on people have been exceedingly rare). I don’t know what that dynamics are. In some cases like Prince Rupert and Petersburg (both on the coast), it has been suggested by friends who live there that the deer are more abundant in around town (possibly partly in response the presence of wolves) which brings the wolves toward abundance, not scarcity, and they then take dogs opportunistically or perhaps for territorial reasons. I can’t think of any cases right now where it was suggested they showed up because of scarcity of prey outside town, but it is certainly possible. I seem to remember one flurry of incidents in around Fairbanks back in the late-70s or early 80s during a period when moose were scarce. These incidents usually happen for relatively short periods, because if the wolves don’t move off fairly quickly after other opportunities, they are usually dealt with. I remember picking up a paper in the Ketchikan airport a few years ago with a color photo on the front of a local trapper posing proudly beside a set snare, with the article loaded with praise for how he was providing community service by cleaning out a pack around town that was quite bold and killing people’s dogs. You would not see that on the front page, or anywhere in the paper, in Juneau where there is usually a lot less wolf activity and considerably more public enthusiasm for wolves.

          • avatar DT says:

            From the sounds of it, you must be from Alaska. I have heard Alaska is a beautiful place but also not for everyone and that includes the more populated cities.

            You say that attacks on people are rare. I’ve seen more stories lately of people that have attacked both fatally and simple harassment. Admittedly, not a lot of them, but more than say ten years ago. Why do you think that is?

            I have a healthy respect for any wild animal. I’ve heard more stories of deer goring hunters than I have wolves. Testosterone, wonderful thing.

            Another question, you mentioned that some packs had several litters. I thought that only an alpha male and alpha female mated in a pack? I’ve also read that there is a new thought that perhaps its really the alpha female that takes charge more than the male.

            There are so many sources of information out there it’s difficult to sort through it all. For every pro-wolf thing I’ve read, I’ve read an equally amount of things from those who want to see wolves gone. How did Minnesota and Alaska deal with wolves for so long?

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            DT,

            I’m in Superior National Forest, just outside the BWCA area in Northern MN. Wolves are literally right outside the door. I’ve seen them pass ~50 feet from the cabin and wolf scat in the driveway is not uncommon. Here we have an abundant deer population so wolf density is high. It’s not wise to let one’s dog wander or chase wildlife(plus, ethically, it’s just wrong). Wolves are one of the few wildlife constituents that will fight back. Dogs are not really part of the wolf diet, and wolves probably look upon dogs as competition, as they do coyotes, and will dispose of them if the can, as they will wolves that trespass in their territory.

            One of my friends has a horse. She keeps it in a large field with 4 or 5 other horses. Wolves to this point have never bothered them, nor does my friend have any real concern.

            Every experience I have had with wolves, one just recently on a lake with three wolves and a deer they just killed (I had my dog with me), the wolves have not made any move of aggression, toward me. To be honest, they have not even shown any real curiosity other than looking my way.

            I’ve said this often before, but here in Minnesota, there are thousands of people each year that venture into the BWCA, all four seasons, and I have not heard of a negative wolf encounter. As few times as people observe wolves, how often are people observed by wolves and are none the wiser for it?

            All that said, wolves are wild animals and must be respected as such. I have more concern for my dog from wolves than I do for myself, therefore, though not on a lead, he is always close, and I mean close.

          • avatar DT says:

            Why is there such a disparity between wolves in Minnesota and wolves in places like Idaho and Wyoming? Are they different types of wolves?

            If one were to fully believe what some people in Idaho are saying, best to stay in your homes with your gun handy because it’s just a matter of time before the wolves show up at your doorstep, looking to rip your throat out. But the picture you paint is vastly different.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            DT,

            You’ve got to ask yourself, is it only anti-wolf folks who live in the woods? I think not. All the folks who have been in the BWCA, Isle Royale, back packed out west, those who have studied wolves… How come none of these people feel threatened? Gosh, but I was strapped into a sled and had a whole pack come towards me on the ice one Winter. They stopped and disappeared around a peninsula, made a kill that night and dispersed two days later within 50 yards of my camp.

            In Minnesota, from the 1970’s wolves came back naturally to a fairly static population of ~3,000. A ***minimum*** population of 1600 was agreed upon by a roundtable.

            Out West, the wolves were brought in by the feds. Hunters and outfitters who benefit from a “robust” game population, ranchers, and anti-government people did not want them. Yet, they maintain there was a remnant native population of wolves in the West, with a whole different set of traits, characteristics, and prey base. Most likely these wolves were natural dispersers from Canada, who more often than not met their demise through the three S’s, and it was not until the area was put under the federal microscope with the reintroduction in 95/96 that wolves had a chance.

          • avatar DT says:

            Wow. A lot of wolves in Minnesota but no cries to control or manage them though I know there is a move to delist them. Well, perhaps there are cries for management but they aren’t as loud as they are from the west. Looks to me like the big difference is in the hunting opportunities out west vs. Minnesota and the size of the ranches vs. farms. Is that an accurate observation?

          • avatar Savebears says:

            DT,

            It depends on who you talk to, there are actually quite a few that are calling for management of the wolves in that area, and they are pushing hard for delisting.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            DT,

            After recent wolf delisting in MN. I would challenge you to compare/contrast this possible philosophy toward wolf management with the NRM states

            http://news.dnr.state.mn.us/2012/01/06/limited-wolf-season-possible-in-2012/

          • avatar jon says:

            immer, what are your thoughts on Mark Johnson’s comment about the wolf hunting season? He seems to want 750 wolves killed in Minnesota. Minnesota is doing it right, so I commend them for that.

          • avatar jon says:

            “The number of licenses and limit on the number killed should be determined by what’s best for the wolf population, Stark said. That will take time and research to determine for Minnesota, but in Canada and Alaska, where wolves have never been endangered, populations can survive a 20 percent to 30 percent annual mortality rate, he said. And, he said, the population in Minnesota has easily withstood the loss of 200 animals a year through sanctioned trapping by federal wildlife officials who target wolves that predate livestock and pets.

            Wolf conservation advocates supported the scope of the DNR’s outline.

            “I’m proud of Minnesota,” said Nancy Gibson, co-founder of the International Wolf Center in Ely.

            But the debate has just begun. The Minnesota Deer Hunters Association has already proposed a more aggressive plan that includes an annual harvest of 750 wolves, and over-the-counter license sales for a season that would coincide with deer hunting.”

          • avatar DT says:

            Immer Treue

            It’s so complicated isn’t it. While there is an abundance of wolves in Minnesota, and they no longer need to be ‘listed’, still, I can see some taking this over the top. I think, could be wrong but I think the population where you live is pretty safe? Out west it seems a bit more scary if you’re a wolf though.

            I’ve tried to think this through, since I don’t have anything to compare this with. I feel thrilled when I see a deer in our yard, or foxes as they come through. Even a coyote is a cool experience, as long as they aren’t eating our cats! I try to imagine what it would be like to see a wolf or cougar in my back yard and I wonder if I would feel that wonder and excitement or would I be fearful?

  17. avatar Jeff N. says:

    Good news for Mexican Gray Wolves. I’d like to think the efforts of the people who contacted the AZF&G Commission and USF&WS (myself, and many others)were at least partly responsible for this positive change of direction.

    http://www.therepublic.com/view/story/b1e061ae89a54445bd87af74749a23e9/AZ–Endangered-Wolves/

  18. avatar jon says:

    Governor candidates debate in Billings

    http://www.kpax.com/news/governor-candidates-debate-in-billings/

    “One of the questions, since Montana’s wolf hunt has failed to achieve its harvest quotas, would the candidates support putting helicopters in the air in an effort to eliminate wolves from the Montana landscape ?

    First to respond was Larry Jent. “No, I’m not going to put a fleet of helicopters in the air, because to kill wolves you hvae to kill them smart – and that’s not smart. The Defenders of Wildlife will be camped out in the Governor’s office the next morning with a lawsuit in hand,” said Jent.

    Republican Jeff Essmann told the crowd he agrees with Jent. “Any new program you set up to do that, has a price tag attached to it. The question is always in terms of interest as a whole, where is that money going to come from, how is it appropriate to raise that money, and what’s the benefit to the entire state from the expense of that money,” Essmann said.

    Former Billings state senator Corey Stapleton disagreed. “I just don’t see a whole lot of need or use for wolves anywhere in our state. I think it’s a state’s right issue. So as Governor, I’ll look forward to legislation that we would monitor that hunt, and help us get back to the numbers that are near zero,” explained Stapleton.”

  19. avatar Nancy says:

    An FYI for everyone when things seem alittle strange come the 18th:

    https://blog.avast.com/2012/01/13/internet-blackout-scheduled-in-protest-of-sopa/

  20. avatar mad says:

    first, I wholeheartedly agree that what the future holds for many species, polar bears included is pretty much unknown. forecasting doom & gloom is always risky and dicey at best, especially when dealing with animals that are omnivorous.

    second, a distinction must be drawn between 2 very different things, adaptation & plasticity. When adaption is mentioned, biologists are referring to a physiological, Darwinian, evolutionary change in the animal due to external forces. If an animal simply alters or changes it’s behavior in a way so that it may survive, but is still consistent with current possesed behavioral traits, then the animal possesses a high level of inherent plasticity (so if I live solely on McDonalds burgers and McDonalds closes, will I die, or will I just go to Burger King or Wendy’s?

    PBs have NOT adapted to life in the Arctic, they have just optimized their behavior due to available prey. if that prey source disappears, they will seek food elsewhere or from other sources because they have plasticity and are omnivorous. Grizzlies are already encroaching on PB territory all over the Arctic. Rockwell published a paper a few years ago detailing grizzly sightings in Northern Manitoba – http://research.amnh.org/~rfr/rockwelletal09.pdf I was in the chopper when we spotted & photographed the grizzly for the cover of the article in the link

    PBs have in the past and will in the future interbreed with grizzlies, as was seen by the hybrid shot by the American hunter a couple of years ago. Is it possible that some of the populations of PBs will shrink or disappear because of local conditions, sure, it’s definitely possible. But will 2/3 disappear in the next 40 yrs, highly unlikely. they are too smart, too resourceful and have already been seen to change their behaviors in response to climate change, environmental factors and other animals

    • mad,

      I don’t know the degree to which to you are correct, but I have hypothesized similarly.

      Polar bears might well survive, although in a somewhat altered form. Their extinction is not necessarily all but guaranteed as many have suggested though that is possible.

  21. avatar CodyCoyote says:

    Hunters around Butte Montana to MT-FWP that their allegedly poor elk hunting this past season was due to FWP not eliminating more wolves, cougars, and black bears.

    http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/butte-hunters-meeting-turns-into-venting-session/article_0839ee47-cbc1-5f9d-91cf-de9f2f63bdf3.html

    ( The Butte paper, the Montana Standard, might have more to say about this venting session ).

    Rugged outdoorsy humans blaming poor big game hunting results on those darn apex predators. Where have we heard THAT before ? Where’s that elk I bought and paid for ?

    • avatar Mike says:

      They really need some cheese with their whine over there.

      Wittle babies.

      • avatar Elk275 says:

        If you read the article it is Jack Atcheson Sr. who was quoted. Jack Atcheson Sr. is considered by several editors of major sporting magazines to be the finest public lands elk hunter in the nation. He can find elk when there are no elk to be found. When Jack can not find elk there are no elk.

        It is Jack Sr and Jack Jones who forced the State of Montana to allow public access to state lands, at one time the grazing lease holder had exclusive rights to public lands and could bar all trespass. Because of them we the general public are allowed to hunt, fish, hike, view wildlife and take pictures on 5 million acres of public state land.

        I know Jack Sr and am very good friends with his son Jack Jr. Jack Jr is one of the very best mountain sheep hunters in the world and is currently the chairman of the wild sheep foundation. When the state biologists can not find wildlife these are the people they call. These people have done as much for wildlife in the State of Montana as anybody. BTW, they are enjoy Scotch not wine.

        • avatar JEFF E says:

          Ralph, Brian, Ron.

          How long is this fine blog going to be subjected to the continuous anti-hunting cesspool??

        • avatar CodyCoyote says:

          I appreciate your characterization of Jack and Jack , and it sounds like they have been good for public hunting, which is laudable. The state lands being landlocked by the leaseholder is a recurring thorny issue in Wyoming, with mixed results.

          But what evidence do they present to back up their claims about predators being the big reason behind an apparent shortage of huntable elk ? How did they arrive at that conclusion ? Where do they hunt , and what’s the situation in those specific elk hunt areas ? Second sources of attribution ? Outside biologists weigh in ?

          I just spun thru a Cabela’s catalog. Didn’t see any 7 League Boots offered in the men’s footwear section , that would allow a sportsman to leap to a far conclusion.

          I guess I’m expressing my frustration at wolves always getting morphed into scapegoats…

          • avatar WM says:

            Cody,

            You know this “wolf as scapegoat” sure gets alot of play. If there were not tangible impacts from wolves in the settlement of the West there would not have been efforts at the territory/state and national levels to irradicate them.

            The creation of a provisional government in the Willamette Valley of Oregon was predicated on a need to deal with wolves affecting livestock in the early 1840’s. No doubt there were similar stories throughout the US wherever wolves and an expanding human population created an uneasy interface, otherwise there would not have been the momentum to address the perceived/real problems in organized campaigns of bounties, professional hunter/trappers and an array of poisoning efforts, even at the national level.

            We can surely disagree about how to treat wolves now based on science and changing values, but nearly a hundred fifty years ago there was a perceived need. So, the “wolf as scapegoat” is another one of those convenient handles that has limited basis in truth. In other words, Cody, it’s bullshit!

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            WM,

            Not to argue the point that livestock are subject to wolf depredation, because they are.

            “If there were not tangible impacts from wolves in the settlement of the West there would not have been efforts at the territory/state and national levels to irradicate them.”

            The big question is why the past efforts to eradicate them. Does it have anything to do with their natural prey base was all but eradicated first, ie bison and market hunting, that left nothing for wolves save livestock?

            Things are different now. Wolves have been delisted and are being”managed”. There is a prey base that has taken a hit in some regions, and it will take some time for humans to reach a certain degree of serendipity.

            The wolf has become a convenient target for +++anything+++ that impacts ranching and hunter success rates. Even in Wisconsin, the wolf gets the blame for deer harvests rates when Ma’iingan states that the biggest impact on deer are severe Winters and bear.

            I’m not saying the wolf is a saint, but it certainly is not the devil that some make it to be, and it appears, at least in the western states the wolf naysayers are louder, thus the regressive (in my opinion) state management programs.

          • avatar JB says:

            “So, the “wolf as scapegoat” is another one of those convenient handles that has limited basis in truth. In other words, Cody, it’s bullshit!”

            C’mon, WM. You don’t really believe that. Wolves are consistently blamed for all sorts of problems in the West with incredibly hyperbolas claims straight out of the mouth of government officials. For example, I recall that last year the director for the DNR compared the wolf restoration to a resurrection of the T. Rex. Idaho’s commissioner McDermott called wolves a “stone cold killers” that are being used to “achieve a major goal of eliminating hunters and our hunting heritage”; he went on to assert that “the damage that these killing machines are inflicting on Idaho’s wildlife is unacceptable, unsustainable and must stop.” The state of Utah–lacking any verifiable wolf population–passed SB36 in an attempt to prevent wolf packs from forming in the state. They justified the law with the following:

            “The wolf is a predator and its presence in the state threatens the state’s wildlife and ungulate populations…it is the policy of the state that the wolf shall be destroyed or removed from the state”.

            Even before they were reintroduced, some Montanans carried signs calling wolves “The Saddam Hussein” of the animal world.

            Bullshit, indeed.

          • avatar CodyCoyote says:

            Sorry. Not B.S.
            Where I live in Cody Wyoming, wolves are most definitely scapegoated. Big Time.

            Livestock losses in Wyoming due to wolves are negligible, and largely preventable. Wolves never were ” managed” only eradicated with prejudice , originating as much from a thousand years of superstitious beliefs as any other wellspring.

            Today , in the 21st century , we know better. or at least some of us do…

          • avatar Mark Gamblin (IDFG) says:

            JB –
            I agree with you that hyperbolic rhetoric seems to surround the wolf management conundrum. Yes, there are over-zealous assertions of wolf impacts and threats – because wolves do in fact have negative consequences for important economic resources and highly valued traditions in every state they are found. The challenge for everyone, is to find reasonable and balanced management objectives to reasonably accomodate the needs and desires of the residents of those states. The need for balance and reasonable, middle ground resolutions is not helped by the strident extremists on both sides – including those who doggedly maintain that wolves have no significant impact on prey populations or that the livestock losses they cause are either the sole responsibility of the livestock owner or are so trivial that the owner should just buck-up and accept those property losses as the cost of doing business. Wolves do affect highly valued hunting opportunity, profitability of farming/ranching operations, and personal security of rural residents who deeply care about the welfare of their livestock and pets. Each of those social costs imposes real and relevant costs to society at the individual, family and community level. Balanced against those costs are values and benefits that are important to other members of our society.
            WM made an important point, too often denied or glossed over in these threads: there are reasons for the passion and gridlock that surrounds this seemingly intractable controversy. Those reasons include real costs to people for having wolves in the country we live in. Stubborn insistence that wolves are the victims of irrational scapegoating contributes nothing, in ultimately counter-productive to a productive resolution of these conflicts.

          • avatar Mark Gamblin (IDFG) says:

            Thanks to Cody Coyote for illustrating my point.

          • avatar WM says:

            So, since ESA listing, and the institutionalized control of the numbers of wolves in the WGL and NRM, how many problem wolves have been dispatched lethally? Thousands? I don’t know the numbers (I am sure they are available with some research effort), but MN alone killed 203 problem wolves last year (against a total of roughly 3,000) and they are deliberately moving toward a hunting season to control numbers as quickly as they can, as are WI and MI, which is over 10 years behind the projected delisting date, delayed by litigation.

            In the NRM the number of problem wolves killed from the reintroduction of the initial 66 in Yellowstone and Central ID to present by WS or state wildlife agencies, has to be at least a thousand.

            And, of course, the standard for removal is a fairly high one. It is greater than a “more probable than not” standard. Furthermore, the depredation incident must be confirmed as wolf caused, AND the depredation must be linked to a specific pack, or wolf/wolves (and yes we can argue whether it is consistently applied, but I think the case is rare when it may not be).

            I am not trying to villianize wolves.
            I understand they are doing what they are genetially programmed to do, for their own individual survival and collectively for the survival and propagation of the species. I want them on the landscape in many places, but I want their numbers controlled.

            I have considerable difficulty with the term “scapegoat” that gets thrown around so liberally, in the face of evidence that strongly suggests they can be, in specific locations and under specific conditions, troublesome animals.

            World history is full of objective evidence and instances where wolves have interacted with humnans in ways that create the inherent dislike for them by some people, for centuries.

            JB, you and I have both made reference to studies outside the US where wolves are perceived differently by people who have to deal with them on a daily basis or those who have business assets at risk because of wolves, as compared to people who want to see them for the first time (often urbanites), or who champion their role in ecosystems out of balance.

            I just get tired of the oversimplification and convenient labels like “scapegoat” so much of the time when it is not applicable.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            WM,
            “but MN alone killed 203 problem wolves last year (against a total of roughly 3,000) and they are deliberately moving toward a hunting season to control numbers as quickly as they can…”

            ***Minnesota has an estimated 3,000 wolves. Wolf numbers and their distribution have remained stable for the past 10 years.***

            This from the abstract for a possible MN wolf season. Perhaps it’s splitting hairs, but MN appears to have a stable population over the past ten years. Stable for ten years does not resonate as if numbers need to be controlled as quickly as they can. Whether one believes a wolf season is needed or not in MN, the philosophy in MN is much, much different than in the West. The wolf in MN is looked upon as a valuable fur bearing animal.

          • avatar WM says:

            Immer,

            You are right. I mis-wrote. I banged out that sentence out too quickly – Two different ideas in one poorly written sentence. Let me rephrase.

            “…but MN alone killed 203 problem wolves last year (against a total of roughly 3,000) and they are deliberately moving toward a hunting season to control numbers as quickly as they can…”

            should read ++ … but MN alone killed 205 problem wolves last year (against a total of roughly 3,000, which has been static for the last 10 years). They are aggressively moving toward a hunting season (after a prolonged delisting fight, which has been delayed by 10 years due to litigation). And, adjacent WI and MI are doing so as well so THEY can control numbers as quickly as they can.”

            The point here was, in an increasingly human occupied landscape their numbers will always require managing their numbers.

            Viewing wolves as a valuable fur-bearing animal (presumably a harvestable one) in this age is also a slippery slope.

            I agree the attitude of MN is much different than the NRM, and apparently the Southwest where things seem even worse. There are also lots of factors which make the people, economy, and geography view wolves differently in the NRM, SW, and maybe the NW which is just now getting its first wolves and the bitter-sweet taste of trying to manage them to minimize conflicts with stakeholders touting different needs/values.

          • avatar JB says:

            Mark, WM:

            Certainly wolves negatively impact some people through their activities. And I agree that these impacts are often underestimated or downplayed by people who regularly post here. However, I don’t agree with meeting hyperbolas claims with the same degree of exaggeration.

            You both mentioned the costs associated with wolf predation on livestock, which are important and need consideration, but are often substantially overstated (again, see my quotes above). What evidence do I have that such quotes are hyperbole? How about a recent (2009) publication by three USDA/WS employees (hardly friendly to wolves) published in the Proceedings of the 13th Wildlife Damage Management Conference (hardly a favorable venue). These researchers analyzed data on verified and unverified sheep losses due to predation by wolves and coyotes from 1995-2007 to determine the correlation between wolf population growth and predation due to wolves and coyotes. They noted that there was a perceived decrease in coyote predation that happened concurrent with an increasing wolf population–which may have been caused by coyote population reduction due to wolves that has been noticed elsewhere in the West (e.g., YNP).

            What did they find? A strong negative relationship (r = -0.64) between wolf population size and predation losses due to coyotes; and not surprisingly, a strong positive relationship (r = 0.9) between wolf population size and wolf depredations. But what is really interesting isn’t mentioned in the results at all, but reserved for the discussion:

            “An analysis of statewide sheep inventory and mortality data collected annually in Idaho…suggested there has been a slight decrease in the annual percent predation loss for the sheep industry.”

            Of course, the authors note that the decrease in coyote depredation could also be due to increased vigilance on the part of producers to prevent wolf depredation. Great observation; but alas, there is no way of escaping the conclusion that since wolves were reintroduced in Idaho, sheep depredations have actually declined.

            Yet, according to Idaho’s legislature:

            “…it is apparent that successful re-introduction of wolves has re-established a negative economic impact for farmers, ranchers, and small rural communities that are agriculturally based. The ravaging of domestic livestock and Idaho wildlife will increase…” (Idaho House Joint Memorial 5, 2000).

            Similarly, Tony McDermott’s rhetoric speaks of the elimination of hunting and unsustainable “damage” done by wolves; yet, despite the long term drought in the West, and the presence of wolves, Elk populations have generally been stable to increasing throughout most of the West, including many places where wolves reside.

            Upon some reflection, I agree with Commissioner McDermott on one point: wolves are being used as a “tool”, but not just by animal rights activists. They are being used as a tool by politicians who seek to gain the favor of the powerful hunting and livestock lobbies in the West, and the fearful, ill-informed people whom they represent.

          • avatar JB says:

            Forgot my citation:

            Galle, A., M. Collinge, and R. Engeman. 2009. Trends in Summer Coyote and Wolf Predation on Sheep in Idaho During a Period of Wolf Recovery (Paper 13). Proceedings of the 13th Wildlife Damage Management Conference:184-190.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            WM,

            You will get no argument from me…

            +++The point here was, in an increasingly human occupied landscape their numbers will always require managing their numbers.+++

            Where my neck hairs rise is the how the why’s and the how longs in terms of a wolf season.

          • avatar WM says:

            JB,

            I am not sure what to make of the paper you cite. Coyote populations were not monitored, for the period of the study, so there was quite a bit of speculation as to why the reduction, which consumes the majority of the discussion portion of the paper.

            Importantly the authors state one reason for reduced depredation by coyotes has to do with the fact that more sheep operations were using more guard dogs, apparently an effective deterrent against coyotes as well as wolves. So, I think you are playing a little fast and loose with the conclusions of that study (which I find uncharacteristic of your usual careful analysis and representations).

            And here is the concluding paragraph of the study.

            ++If wolf populations continue to increase in Idaho, depredation on livestock also would be expected to increase. Over the last 20 years, wolf populations have been expanding in the Great Lakes region resulting in range expansion and colonization of previously unoccupied areas (Mech 1998, 2001; Berg and Benson 1999; Fuller et al. 1992). During this same period, livestock depredations by wolves increased (Fritz 1982, Fritz et al. 1992). A similar scenario to the Great Lakes region is apparently occurring in Idaho. When wolves were reintroduced into central Idaho they occupied a relatively small area in the Salmon River drainage. As the population has grown, wolf range has expanded into the lower elevation, privately-owned lands and depredations on livestock have increased. Whether or not this trend continues will likely depend largely on whether Idaho is successful in reducing the state’s wolf population through regulated public hunting of delisted wolves.++

            {The study is available at digital commons, but the link is very long – just Google JB’s cite and it should come up as a PDF.}

          • avatar JB says:

            WM:

            Apparently you missed this in my original post:

            “Of course, the authors note that the decrease in coyote depredation could also be due to increased vigilance on the part of producers to prevent wolf depredation.”

            No worries, it happens to everybody.

            Regarding the last paragraph… I thought about citing it directly as evidence of author bias, but didn’t feel the need to make the point. Since you bring it up, the authors’ data indicate that increased wolf populations are associated with decreased coyote depredations and a decreased depredations overall, yet they predict that increased wolf populations will lead to increased depredations overall. Huh? This conclusion is not supported by the author’s data, nor any evidence they cite. Moreover, they go on to suggest that the only way to avoid increased depredation is to reduce the wolf population. And who will receive the contract to reduce that population? And who will be contracted to inspect carcasses of animals killed? None other than the employer of the three authors.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            WM,

            In regard to a MN season and how at least the MNDNR views wolves,

            ++“Without a history of regulated wolf seasons, we don’t know what kind of hunter and trapper interest and success rate to expect,” said Dan Stark, DNR large carnivore specialist. For these reasons, he said, ***it is necessary to be conservative during initial seasons***.
            Stark said the DNR proposal would manage wolves as a prized and high-value fur species by setting the season when pelts are prime, limiting the take through a lottery and requiring animals be registered.++

            Yes, a different place than the NRM states, but an initial philosophy that is 180 degrees from the NRMS. If the politicians can only stay out of it, and concentrate on areas of more importance.

            http://news.dnr.state.mn.us/2012/01/06/limited-wolf-season-possible-in-2012/

          • avatar SEAK Mossback says:

            I guess after learning of the full extent of the anti-bald eagle campaign in Alaska including bounties up until 1953, I would not take the fact that there was a bounty on wolves or that the government hired and sent out agents with poison to be proof that real problems existed. I believe there probably were some real problems for ranchers, but cannot take the campaign against wolves as proof. Bald eagles are scavengers, for crying out loud. It would be like putting a bounty on vultures to cut down on livestock depredation, but it happened. Yes, I have once seen a bald eagle jump on a bright sockeye in the Chignik River and nearly get drowned for it. They tend to set up in trees well below the spawning area and catch the spawned-out drifters. The other fish I’ve seen them mostly catch are pollock, herring and flounders — not likely to break the fishing industry. They occasionally nail a gull or a sea duck but the rest of the time, they are mostly eating dead stuff. Yet, they were considered an economic scourge and there was a bounty on them for 39 years, and something in the neigborhood of 100,000 were shot for their feet to get the bounty that was put up by a less-than-flush territorial government. I’ll leave it to you to say what the bounty proved, but it did not prove the existence of a real economic impact by eagles on the fishing industry.

  22. avatar CodyCoyote says:

    An intriguing story about Yellowstone’s largest wolf pack, the 2o-member Mollies , a pack which also contain the physically largest wolves in the Park owing to their propensity to take down Bison in winter , the only pack that regularly preys on the big beasts . Except this year their is little snow in interior Yellowstone , so far , and that apparently makes it harder to for wolves to bring down a Bison. Thus the Mollie’s have set out for new territory in search of prey , challenging other wolfpacks along the way.

    http://missoulian.com/news/state-and-regional/lack-of-snow-sends-yellowstone-wolf-pack-wandering/article_a726467a-3a77-11e1-9fbb-0019bb2963f4.html

    First published a week ago in the various Lee Newspapers of Montana , I somehow missed this story , so I apologize if it is a re-post.

  23. avatar CodyCoyote says:

    An article at The Atlantic expounding on the amazing video of a Crow that uses a jar lid as a saucer sled to slide down a snowy steel roof. Then it carries the lid back up to the roofline, finds a new luge path , and sets off again . Whee !

    http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2012/01/science-can-neither-explain-nor-deny-the-awesomeness-of-this-sledding-crow/251395/

    Animals like to have fun . We already knew that . But I for one appreciate how smart the members of the Raven-Crow family ( and Wyoming Magpies) can be. This Crow is a good example. Like that Raven in Finland who was raiding the ice fisherman’s pond sets.

    http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/episodes/ravens/video-raven-intelligence/1549/

    • avatar Nancy says:

      Saw that on the news CC. Loved it!!

      Reminded me of a barn swallow last year I watched flying up in the air, dropping a feather and then catching the feather in flight… it dropped and caught the feather numerous times before getting bored with the game.

      • avatar Barb Rupers says:

        Back when pillows had feathers in them I used to stand on the upper deck and let them fly in a light breeze. It would draw in about a dozen tree swallows. Also, barn swallows bring feathers to line their nests and I can coax them off the nest to catch a feather mid air.

    • avatar SEAK Mossback says:

      I also enjoy watching crows and ravens here. I haven’t seen anything really ingenious but the crows are always picking up mussels at the tideline and flying over a hard surface (usually a sidewalk or roadway) and dropping them from height to break them open. Ravens are very attuned to rifle shots and I usually hear wing beats coming through the forest within minutes, sometimes seconds, of shooting a deer. Now if I could only get them to go out and scout deer for me! (who knows, maybe they are but I just haven’t figured out their communications yet). A guy who has long studied crows and ravens gave a talk in town about a year ago that was really enlightening in understanding them. One of the funnier things he’s done is shown that they are very good at telling people apart. His research group wore different masks while capturing and handling crows on the University of Washington campus and found that the crows responded loudly and agressively to the same masks, but not others, for months when they walked the trails around campus — they got really lathered up at the George W. Bush mask. Some of the corvids can talk like parrots — we had friends out of McCall Idaho who had a magpie that talked a blue streak, commonly yelling at the dog “Here lady! (and whistling)”.

  24. avatar jon says:

    http://canislupus101.blogspot.com/2012/01/wy-gov-backs-off-wolf-comments.html

    LARAMIE — Gov. Matt Mead backed away from a statement he made Friday saying he supported a wolf-management plan that allowed hunters to target the animals in Grand Teton National Park.

    Maps in a management plan slated to go before legislators show wolf hunting will be allowed in Grand Teton National Park, the John D. Rockefeller Memorial Parkway and the National Elk Refuge. The plan, forged in a deal between Mead and the federal government, excludes Yel-lowstone National Park and the Wind River Indian Reservation from hunt areas.

    Not good.

  25. avatar IDhiker says:

    Speaking of birds, my wife and I went up to Polson, Montana, today to see if we could spot any of the Snowy owls reportedly in the area. Getting a lead from another bird-watcher, we drove to the hill on the south side of town where the telecommunications towers are. At the top, we saw five owls, all within 100 yards of where we parked, one only about thirty yards away. Some were yearlings, and the others adults. Two were sitting on the roof of a residence.

  26. avatar Ryan says:

    http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2017113840_eatingsquirrels29m.html

    2 birds with one stone, invasive species down and positive enviromental impact.

  27. avatar CodyCoyote says:

    I hope this is not a harbinger:
    http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2012/01/new-animal-virus/

    (quote) ” Scientists in northern Europe are scrambling to learn more about a new virus that causes fetal malformations and stillbirths in cattle, sheep, and goats. For now, they don’t have a clue about the virus’s origins or why it’s suddenly causing an outbreak” ( endquote )

    If the same viral agent affects domestic cattle domestic sheep, and domestic goats, then there is a better than even chance the same virus would affect Bison , Bighorns, and perhaps Rocky Mountain goats and/or Pronghorn. And other ungulates such as Elk , Deer, Moose ?

  28. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Another bad year for the rhino?
    Eight rhino carcasses found in Kruger Park http://www.sanparks.org/about/news/default.php?id=1789
    The war is on! Another news release says “Two suspected poachers fatally wounded in Kruger”.

  29. avatar timz says:

    A story of over-zealous DNR and police. I know these folks, they are neighbors of my brother and sister in-law.
    http://www.twincities.com/ci_19752411?source=most_viewed

    • avatar Paul says:

      What is wrong with these people? Kill, kill, kill that is their answer for everything. There was a similar situation here in Wisconsin not too long ago where the WI DNR wanted to kill an orphaned deer that a man had raised. The county prosecutor actually went so far as to charge him with “unauthorized taking of deer from wild.” Scott Walker actually did the only good thing of his governorship and issued a “pardon” for the deer.

      http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/walker-pardons-charlotte-the-deer/article_ba874436-2784-11e1-bbbb-001871e3ce6c.html

      I wonder if a poacher would have faced the same penalty that this man had. Any wonder why there is so much distrust of fish and game departments in this country? Do these people have a conscience?

    • avatar Ryan says:

      Look at the other side, Deer illnesses and parasite outbreaks have been going through the roof as of late. The way these people were exposing the wild population of deer using themselves as a vector to transfer bugs and viruses from houses, dogs, livestock feed, travel, etc to the wild population wasn’t a real genious move IMHO. They could have dispatched the deer in a better way, but maybe this will serve as a leson to those who feel keeping 1st generation wild animals as a pet is a good idea.

  30. avatar timz says:

    Frankly it’s what I would expect from Gamblin and his bunch, not the MN DNR.

  31. avatar timz says:

    Here is the original email I recieved, may differ from the story in the paper. Ralph, etal, I have his permission to post it.
    “An outrageous unnecessary ending to a great wildlife story. After 7-1/2 months the two orphaned twin fawns we have grown to love named Abbie & Pinkie were brutally gunned down in our own yard around 7 AM this morning. (1/14/12) As I was working in our home office I was startled by the blast of a shotgun just outside of the garage. It was pretty cold last night and I was thinking the frost possible made the concrete crack. Then a few minutes later BANG from our deck area. Now I am flying out the patio door to see who the hell is shooting a shotgun in my yard at 7 AM. I am shocked when I see a Forest Lake cop standing there 10′ away from our precious Abbie laying in a pool of blood. I was stunned, furious and livid (and will be for a long time) calling him every name I could think of and many more. What the #* %# are you doing on my property and why did you kill this inocent fawn? Did you shoot the other one to or did you miss her from 10′ away? He would not reply so I started again with even a higher level of profanity and volume until he finally said “the DNR told me to shoot them as they may be diseased”

    Are you a complete idiot? Could you not knock on the door or call us first before you decide to start blowing away innocent fawns with a shot gun in our yard at 7 AM? The cop had no reply, I ask again did you shoot the other fawn? He refused to reply. After I walking around to the front yard it didn’t take long to find our other gift from mother nature Pinkie also laying in a huge pool of blood. By now I know I need to get away from this S.O.B. before I do something I would regret later. About 5 minutes later a second cop shows up and then after another thirty minutes a pick-up truck shows up. So here are your tax dollars at work with 3 of our areas finest dragging two blood trails through our yard. They threw the two fawns that fought so hard to survive in the wild from the day they lost their mother. They survived a hunting season and natural preditors but could not survive a trigger happy cop with a shotgun at 10′.

    I will never forget the day two very brave abandon baby fawns found their way to our home on 10 acres to and become part of our family. They were always free to come and go as they wished as well as interact with other deer that roamed the wooded areas around us. They enjoyed playing with our dogs and interacting with us whenever they came to visit.”

    • avatar WM says:

      One act of stupidity begets yet another. These folks sealed the fate of the two fawns when they claimed them as “part of their family,” and put the pink collars on them so they could tell them apart.

      It still does not excuse the incredibly poor judgment and practice of the local police department when asked to deal with what the DNR perceived as potentially diseased problem wildlife.

      Maybe there is a lesson here for everyone.

  32. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Montana reaches 60% of wolf harvest
    http://www.examiner.com/hunting-in-national/montana-reaches-60-of-wolf-harvest
    Added Bonus, you get some subtle anti-wolf propaganda with the article for free: “….reality dictates that the wolf populations must be maintained not only for the survival of other species, but for the protection of humans…….”

  33. avatar JEFF E says:

    morgan Peter.
    Wie gehts du?

  34. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    They call it “intensive management”!
    Feds won´t enforce Alaska predator control decision targeting wolves.
    +Unable to set a fire, the state wants to open fire+
    http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/feds-wont-enforce-alaska-predator-control-decision-targeting-wolves

  35. avatar DT says:

    Hi, just another question. I’m sure there are plenty more in me but if you could help me with this one…

    How would I protect my dairy cows and if we raised them, sheep and cattle from wolves and coyotes? I tried that thing were you tie stuff to the fence, flandry? It didn’t work, not with the coyotes anyway. Poison and trapping is kinda out since we have dogs. I’ve noticed more and more coyote problems lately which is why I am asking. And since I was asking, I thought I’d add in about wolves too, not that we have any here in Iowa. That I know of ….

  36. avatar jon says:

    http://www.alaskadispatch.com/article/feds-wont-enforce-alaska-predator-control-decision-targeting-wolves

    Alaska wants to kill wolves on federal lands to provide more hunting opportunities for hunters, but feds say no. Good news. Way to go feds!

  37. avatar CodyCoyote says:

    This will be all over the news shortly. Obama has decided to not approve the Keystone XL pipeline and has ordered the State Department to put a hold on the projects.

    Obama decided this not because of any overriding environmental or energy productions concerns, but simply because congress forced his hand a mandated a 2-month deadline to decide. He decided. He says there are too many questions and unresolved issues about the Keystone XL tar sands pipe to allow it to go forward at this time.

    The moral of the story : Be careful what you ask for, Congress.

    The oil industry will of course go ballistic.

    • avatar CodyCoyote says:

      Sorry. Forgot to put in the link to the official State Department press release. It was State that made Obama’s decision for him to not fast track the Keystone XL pipeline. He merely concurred with it.

      http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2012/01/181473.htm

      • avatar Salle says:

        Well, I read, somewhere about a week ago, that they have already started working a proposal for an alternate route through the Dakotas or something. I’ll have to hunt that story down.I think it’s a good thing for the pres. to do something other than a rubber-stamp action…finally. Wonder of he’ll oppose any of the alternate routes when they come into the public eye.

        • avatar CodyCoyote says:

          Salle- this new Keystone XL pipeline is actually the second with that name. Keystone 1 already exists and has been operating for many years. It runs parallel to the US-Canada border for a few hundred miles — all the way to Winnipeg —before crossing it and heading due south to Lincoln NE. The planned route for the new Keystone XL ( = 2) cuts down diagonally across northeast MT and the Dakota and straight thru the Sand Hills of Nebraska , the contentious area. The two Keystones intersect south of Lincoln NE on the Kansas border on their way to the Gulf oil refinery complexes. XL’s route was designed to cover the distance in the shortest possible traverse. I don’t think it’s much of a coincidence that it passes near the giant Bakken Field development of eastern Montana and the western Dakotas , now booming like nothing that’s been seen in this country since Texas gusher days.

          There are actually well over 100,000 bulk transport pipelines in the US already , totalling well north of a million miles of pipe. Keystone XL was the penultimate. What distinguishes Keystone XL is of course its size, but more importantly the politics. The real issues with XL have been utterly masked behind the jobs and ” end our dependence on foreign oil” argument , both of which are specious.

          Obama made the right decision , for now. It will cost him dearly for thje forseeable ( it’s already started if you’ve heard any media sound bites this morning ) .

          Keystone XL will be built…somewhere, just a couple years later than planned. It does nothing to advance this nation’s dire need to develop an energy policy that shows the Hyrdrocarbon Hegemony to the door

          • avatar Salle says:

            I agree. I know about a number of the piping systems in the region and elsewhere, was involved in the oil industry in another life. I also agree about the politics being the main driver of this debacle… everything from the tar sands being decimated to the absolutely offensive mega-load fiasco. What the public wants is of no concern to these mega-millionaires thus, it should not be a concern to “we the little people” (as one speaker of the house called us early in the assault on our democracy).

            Just sit down, shut up and do what we tell you.

  38. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Nice wildlife educational video said to be shot by a wildlife management official makes the news this morning. Of course everything is legal in this video – just a bit “unpleasing to the eye”. I will not comment further in order to not provoke a reply from Mr. Gamblin.
    http://www.care2.com/causes/wildlife-official-shocks-board-with-trapped-bobcat-video.html

    • avatar william huard says:

      Do trappers have blood in their veins? I wonder. There are a few things that are obvious- trappers are callous, heartless, moneygrubbers who would sell their grandmother to make a buck.

    • avatar Immer Treue says:

      After watching the video:

      1. Appalled at needless torment of the trapped bobcat
      2. Equally appalled at the racket made by the dog. Only serves to make one dislike the presence of dogs in the woods, and this from a dog owner.

      The only dog barking I great with open arms is sled dogs in their excitement to pull. Thing is, once they begin to pull, they shut-up.

      That said, and I have no real ill will toward dogs, if bear and cougar dogs make this sort of racket, the presence of wolves is natures way for these so-called sporting dogs to STFU.

      • avatar william huard says:

        Nevada has a “humane” 96 hour trap check policy. When these dirtbag trappers call people “antis”….We are anti cruelty? anti dirtbag? What does anti mean?
        Whenever people try to make reasonable changes to trapping laws ie make traps farther away from trails etc- they frame it as anti-trapping law legislation, an assault on the heritage of trapping…..

        • avatar Salle says:

          In those cases it’s always the best strategy to assume the victim position first… n’est ce pas?

          • avatar william huard says:

            We need a FED trapping law that includes a mandatory 24 hour trap check policy. If it’s too “inconvenient” for these slob part time hobby trappers- tough sh&^…….Find another way to make income- sell stuff on ebay

    • avatar DT says:

      Too bad that chain didn’t snap to give the bobcat a fighting chance. That was a sucky video.

  39. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Ravalli County releases draft proposal of wolf-hunting rules
    Read more: http://missoulian.com/news/state-and-regional/ravalli-county-releases-draft-proposal-of-wolf-hunting-rules/article_f6c12d80-4251-11e1-8178-001871e3ce6c.html#ixzz1jtZNuvtA
    This is the outcome when they are granted the opportunity to set the standards (or better, bend the rules?): Nearly unlimited/unrestricted hunting opportunities. Of course,. it is not meant anti-wolf (nor anti-bear, nor cougar). To me these rules strongly resemble these old time hunting habits mentioned here on a different thread and said to be no longer prevalent in today´s society. Could it be that, when you let people loose, they very quickly revert to the old time habits?

  40. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Finally, news from the fanclub of the wolf tapeworm. Here we go again….
    http://voices.idahostatesman.com/2012/01/18/rockybarker/pearce_plans_hearings_wolf_parasite_and_lochsa_land_exchange

  41. avatar Salle says:

    A fine collection of the past year’s street art… because it’s cool.

    http://www.streetartutopia.com/?p=5982

  42. avatar Salle says:

    Fire destroys 3,500-year-old tree, arson suspected

    http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2012/01/16/fire-destroys-3500-year-old-tree-arson-suspected/

    What a drag.

    • avatar Doryfun says:

      Salle,

      Wow, this is ironic for me, as I just released a post on my own blog about old trees just this morning. I knew trees lived to be ancient, but not that ancient. Astounding.

      What a sad story, though, as it is simply unfathomable to me how any human would want to burn something that old??

      If only there was some sort of cosmic thumb that could come down on those type of people to make them one with the tree.

      • avatar Salle says:

        I don’t have citations handy but this is not the first time, in the last couple decades, that there has been an attack on an ancient tree. I don’t get what that’s all about.

      • avatar skyrim says:

        “Cosmic Thumb” When anyone identifies the existence of such a useful appendage, please let me know. I have a list of egregious offenders to start working on. ^..^

  43. avatar Salle says:

    Commission releases draft predator control policy

    http://www.ravallirepublic.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/article_d6d08aa0-424e-11e1-9938-001871e3ce6c.html

    “Home / Ravalli Republic || News / Local / Government and Politics / Government and Politics
    Commission releases draft predator control policy

    * Story
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    Commission releases draft predator control policy

    By WHITNEY BERMES – Ravalli Republic RavalliRepublic.com | Posted: Wednesday, January 18, 2012 8:34 pm | (1) Comments

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    Ravalli County commissioners released the first draft of their predator control policy on Tuesday, one that calls for no quota, longer hunting seasons and trapping for wolves in the Ravalli County.

    Commission Chairman Matt Kanenwisher emphasized that the purpose of the policy is to bring a proposal on predator management policies to Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks. It is to “give people of Ravalli County a voice,” he said.

    “Ravalli County has never asserted that the county has the ability to manage wolves,” Kanenwisher said. “We don’t have the authority to do that.”

    Commissioner Greg Chilcott said the policy is often mischaracterized.

    “This policy is not anti-wolf,” Chilcott said. “This policy should be recognized as advocacy for humans, for ungulate populations and for livestock.”

    For wolf hunting in the Bitterroot, the policy suggests no quota, a general season running Aug. 30-June 30, trapping permitted Nov. 15-March 15, snaring, a non-resident fee of $31.75, over-the-counter tags available at any time, electronic calls, a deer or elk tag can be used on a wolf during general season, five tags per year including trapping, no hunter orange requirement and no baiting for wolves. However, wolves may be taken incidentally over a bear bait.”

    “While gathering public comment, commissioners heard concerns from residents who oppose increased wolf hunting. However, the draft said, their reasons aren’t enough to keep the county from moving forward with this policy.

    “While some citizens within Ravalli County highly prize the existence of the wolf, there is no acceptable argument that this admiration of the wolf which simply values the sighting of this species supersedes or trumps the long heritage of hunting and family-based activity within the Bitterroot,” the draft reads.

    Now that the draft is released, a two-week public comment period will follow. The draft will be posted on the county’s website. There are also hard copies available in the commissioners’ office.”

    • avatar CodyCoyote says:

      The news from Absurdia, Montana.

    • avatar william huard says:

      The policy isn’t anti-wolf? Well- we’re not allowing take with hand grenades, bazookas, or biological warfare….Now, if we were really anti-wolf don’t you think we would allow those methods as well…..What- are you people ignerint?

  44. avatar CodyCoyote says:

    A shallow, mostly unattributed editorial in the Wallowa County Chieftain newspaper from Enterprise, Orgeon , saying that research supporting wolves is ‘ lacking rigor ‘ . Just as this editorial lacks rigor, I suppose…but it does quote Ronald Reagan.

    http://wallowa.com/opinion/regional_opinions/commentarty-wolf-supporting-research-lacks-rigor/article_63934d2e-41ff-11e1-bf0b-0019bb2963f4.html

  45. avatar WM says:

    ID will be adding another dog kill by wolves to their 2012 stats.

    http://www.cdapress.com/news/local_news/article_76515192-01af-54e9-936a-70acc11ab9d8.html

    So, who pays for this woman’s dog killed on private property? I can already see the rationalization – “It shouldn’t have been chained up.” Not everyone wants an indoor dog.

    Suppose this might have been a contributing reason settlers didn’t like wolves and sought their elimination. Facts not so different than the incident on Vancouver Island a couple of weeks ago, except this dog was killed. That one just lost its tail and had a bunch of costly surgeries.

    • avatar skyrim says:

      I hit a Mulie on I-15 near Beaver Utah early Monday morning. Who pays for the damage to my car? Wildlife Services, maybe?
      There’s a certain amount of risk in living/driving in proximity to wild things. I say we wipe out all the Deer. Who’s with me?

      • avatar william huard says:

        I think it’s the HSUS fault. Make them pay.

        • avatar william huard says:

          Maybe if the “avid sportsmen” wasn’t out trying to kill wolves that morning, they wouldn’t have killed the dog. Payback is a bit%^. What type of a person leaves a dog outside on a chain in 10 degree weather?

      • avatar WM says:

        ++I hit a Mulie on I-15 near Beaver Utah++

        Or, you could ask who do you pay. and how much, for destroying the state’s harvestable wildlife?

        Equally absurd questions, though you may have collision/comprehensive insurance for your car. Doubt one could get that for a family pet (I think medical insurance is available, but not life insurance), especially in wolf country. I would love to see how an underwriter/actuary prices that risk. Maybe IDFG would take that on as a new commercial enterprise.
        ____________

        william,

        If I read the article correctly, it wasn’t his dog, and the incident was at his sister’s home. The irony is that he was out hunting wolves at the time, so it was amissed opportunity to get a wolf AND save his sister’s dog at the same time.

        • avatar william huard says:

          “Suppose this might have been a contributing reason settlers didn’t like wolves and sought their elimination”

          Huh? Wolves were eliminated by settlers for the same reason the Indians were driven off their lands. There was a program the other night about Custer. His first victory in the Seventh Cavalry was an attack on a “peace chief” where Custer killed about 100 innocent women, children, and elderly….The word back home- Custer the hero!!!!!If our ancestors could do that in the name of “progress” did you really think wolves had a chance?

          • avatar WM says:

            william,
            ++ settlers sought….their elimination.++

            Just to give you an example, the first provisional government in the Oregon Territory in the Willamette Valley was instituted by settlers who were incurring livestock losses from wolves in the 1840’s. I expect they didn’t make up the fact they were having the losses, and felt a real need to do something about the cause. No doubt there was a similiarly expressed need throughout the young country, to make things happen as they, unfortunately, did.
            __

            I saw the Custer documentary too, and certainly did not reach the same conclusion as you. He was (in concert with his politically savvy socialite wife) an ego driven, obsessive, “greatness seeking” and foolish officer.

          • avatar william huard says:

            Decimating bison populations for greed and profit, and used as a political strategy to force Indians onto reservations, grizzlies, wolves, game animals nearly exterminated- yeah, that’s making stuff happen…What a legacy!

            I watched the program carefully, are you disputing Custer’s ambush on Black Kettles camp?

          • avatar WM says:

            ++ambush on Black Kettles camp++

            Custer was seeking to be remembered, and always coloring not so carefully outside the lines, during his selfish, socially deviant and loud career. He had no orders to slaughter Black Kettle’s band, but did it on his own. His wife, as you know from the documentary, re-wrote history to make him look better than he was, with literary undertakings in dime novels. The guy was a skuz ball, and US Indian policy was equally as bad.

            As for the bison, you should read Barsness (1985), “Heads, Hides and Horns.” It was recommended by Bob Jackson, a Yellowstone NP ranger who used to post here. It gives a more balanced discussion of the demise of the bison – largely market hunting for the East Coast market, as I recall. Eliminating a food source for Indians to get certain tribes on reservations does have truth to it, as well.
            ____

            Immer,

            I suppose some people chain their dogs because they don’t want them wandering (a very good reason), but don’t want them in the house (farm dogs or those in rural environments can get pretty dirty, some people have allergies, probably other reasons). Other people I have known had outdoor dogs, but they had a kennel, and guess what they tunneled out.

          • avatar william huard says:

            WM-

            The only point that I dispute from your comments is whether Custer killed Black Kettle without orders on his own. I have a copy of Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee, the chapter “The Only Good Indian Is a Dead Indian”-
            The book claims that Custer had explicit orders from Sheridan to destroy the villages and ponies, and kill or hang all warriors.
            They had a dilemma after they shot Black Kettle and his wife as he lifted his hand in a sign of peace. They found it too difficult to separate the warriors from the old men- so they decided to kill indescriminately.
            Ah yes- those “foreign” savages. “The Only Good Wolf is a Dead Wolf”- sense a pattern here?

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            WM,

            Seems lately I have been taking stands in oppostion to some of your posts. Nothing personal, and I still enjoy reading what you have to say.

            The outside dog issue. Farm dogs and working dogs are outside for perhaps a reason. I know my friend can’t keep his sled dogs inside, though he may alternate one inside on different evenings. That said, the entire sledding season both he and his vehicle smell profusely of dog.

            Certain times of the year my dog just gets sloppy as all hell. I guess it’s part of the choice i made to have a dog, and deal with it, even a skunked dog after washing.

            Wandering dogs in rural environments won’t last long due to either 4 legged or 2 legged predators. If people have allergies, there are breeds of dogs where the allergy can be minimized.

            Just seems to be a rather lonely existance for such a social creature to be chained by itself.

          • avatar william huard says:

            Why have a pet if you neglect it? Maybe these people brought the dog inside during the cold and at night- it makes you wonder. If they didn’t the poor dog did not have a very good life. My Rottweilers and Scottish terrier sleep on my bed. They eat better than I do. My Scottie eats fresh peppers, lean deli turkey and roast beef…..

          • avatar WM says:

            william,

            You do realize Dee Brown, the author of “Bury My Heart..” was successfully accused of plagurism and bad scholarhip, yes? I don’t know who is right, on the Cheyenne Black Kettle slaughter at the Washita River, but If I recall from the Custer documentary, there were not explicit orders to attack peaceful Black Kettle’s camp, notwithstanding the apparant general order from Sheridan. I was not paying that close attention to the details leading up to the description of the encounter, but the flavor of that segment was that Custer was bored, and it was his own impatience and iniative that resulted in the decision to slaughter the camp of mostly women, children and elderly (I think), as well as Black Kettle himself. It was a harbinger of things to come, if the narrating historians portrayed it accurately. Even his own officers found his actions disgusting and were highly critical of it,Capt.Benteen(sp?), for example.

            Again, if I recall correctly and I may not, after the fact it was portrayed as some kind of necessary action (today we call it political spin and sucking up to the media, which the military has mastered over the last hundred-fifty years).
            __

            Immer,

            We keep our golden retriever indoors at night, at the foot of the bed. However, this time of year there is alot of mud in our yard, along with moss and other fungi types of things. When the dog comes in from outside, the paws, and tail feathers (common on long hairs like goldens) get a good wipe down. Still the rooms he occupies smell of “ode de moss” which can border on nauseating at times. Not the dog’s fault, of course.

    • avatar Paul says:

      When a bird craps on my car and I have to run it through the car wash, who should reimburse me? It is sad that the dog was killed, but where does personal responsibility come in? Isn’t it ironic that of course the dog had ties to a guy who was “just wolf huntin’ that morning.”

    • avatar Immer Treue says:

      +++Suppose this might have been a contributing reason settlers didn’t like wolves and sought their elimination.+++

      Contributing, perhaps. And I will not go into the main reason again.

      Not to blame the victim, but why have such a social animal as a pet, and chain it up outside? More and more studies show how well dogs have become attuned to humans. Most dogs would rather be with people than with other dogs. The chained dog mentality is as archaic as some of the other “activities” bandied about on this site.

      I have a friend with 24 sled dogs. They are chained, each to an individual house, and the entire group is within chain-linked fence…in the middle of wolf country. Precaution, mainly if a dog slips it’s collar, but also from wolves.

      • avatar JB says:

        My GSD is an indoor dog. Sometimes this is extremely inconvenient. I’ve got to get up to let her out, and when it is sloppy outside, I need to wipe down her paws every time she comes in. We’ve fenced the backyard so I can let her out, but she just sits by the door and whines, so there isn’t much of a point.

        I don’t live in wolf or cougar country, but the four-wheeled predators are more prevalent and just as deadly. And the (2) cats stay indoors for the opposite reason–to protect wildlife from them.

        If my pet gets out and is killed by a car nobody reimburses me. I’m expected to be responsible for my property.

    • avatar Mike says:

      ++Suppose this might have been a contributing reason settlers didn’t like wolves and sought their elimination.++

      Uh, I hate to break it to you WM, but settlers *liked* wolves. ;) That’s exactly how that tame dog that was killed came to be.

      • avatar DT says:

        Mike,

        Where have you seen it that settlers liked wolves? I was always under the impression from things that I’ve read from books and from documentation of original settlers diaries that they really didn’t like wolves, that they were afraid of them, some in part due to the beliefs/experiences from ‘the old country’.

        Or… were you being sarcastic? I’m sorry, I can’t tell.

    • avatar WM says:

      Imnaha Pack once again? I guess they aren’t learning to avoid livestock, even with lethal contol lessons. Let me save skyrim, william and Paul the trouble of a comment, since I can see it coming – “The mule should have been penned up in a wolf proof enclosure.” Like that will sell to the locals.

      • avatar Rancher Bob says:

        WM
        One thing that’s been learned about wolves and livestock depredation once they start repeated killing the only way to stop them is kill them all and start over with another pack. As for a wolf proof pen it has to keep the wolf out and strong enough to keep the animal in, or the animal gets hurt trying to get out. Most wolf, horse/mule encounters involve torn up fences and horses.

    • avatar Elk275 says:

      If a pack of wolves killed one of my mules…………….. watch out Mr. Wolf. When I tie off to hunt on foot, I have to hobble the front legs,also. It is very concerning. We did not have to worry about $hit like this 10 years ago.

      • avatar william huard says:

        Geez Elk-

        How would you be able to fit in “wolf huntin” alongside your gopher huntin? There are only so many hours in a day you know

        • avatar Elk275 says:

          Gopher hunting is April, May, June and July. Wolf season is closed. I have not purchased a wolf tag and will not this year (2011). There are only so many hours in the day and only so many heart beats in a lifetime. One must live life to the fullest.

      • avatar Daniel Berg says:

        Elk275,

        I’ve read accounts from days of the early west and never once did the writers express concern over hobbling their horses in wolf country.

        Several times however, there was anger expressed at having a hobbled horse wander off a mile or two.

      • avatar Mike says:

        Welcome to the real woods, Elk.

      • avatar Mike says:

        ++If a pack of wolves killed one of my mules…………….. watch out Mr. Wolf. When I tie off to hunt on foot, I have to hobble the front legs, also. It is very concerning. We did not have to worry about $hit like this 10 years ago.++

        If you’re worried about things that go bump in the woods, maybe you shouldn’t bring tame animals with you. It seems like the responsibility here is on your shoulders.

        You seem upset at doing this, but perhaps you need to re-examine using animals as slave-objects to carry your junk. Are they needed for your hunt? If their safety is your priority, why drag them into the wilderness where things with claws await them? Your behavior is both contradictory and strange at the same time.

    • avatar WM says:

      More on the mule likely killed by wolves. It appears a yearling heifer was killed a week earlier. That apparently makes a total of 21 (really?) confirmed livestock animals killed by the Imnaha Pack since May 2010.

      http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2012/01/wolf_probably_killed_mule_near.html

  46. avatar Salle says:

    US Thirst for Fossil Fuels is Decimating Nature’s Wildlife: Report
    Beyond the polar bear: Survey of endangered species highlights animals, large and small, often neglected in popular discourse

    http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2012/01/19-2

  47. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    FWP Commission gives initial OK to extended Bitterroot wolf hunt….. and to use hunters to kill bison that stray out of a containment area outside of Yellostone.
    Read more: http://missoulian.com/news/local/fwp-commission-gives-initial-ok-to-extended-bitterroot-wolf-hunt/article_12b20672-42e8-11e1-9285-0019bb2963f4.html#ixzz1jzPQuKaG
    Commissioner Ron Moody, who voted against both proposals, made it clear that he questioned whether the measures are ethical and the proper use of recreational hunters.
    Somebody really developing scruples ?

  48. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    FWP Commission gives initial OK to extended Bitterroot wolf hunt and to use hunters to kill bison that stray out of a containment area outside of Yellostone
    Read more: http://missoulian.com/news/local/fwp-commission-gives-initial-ok-to-extended-bitterroot-wolf-hunt/article_12b20672-42e8-11e1-9285-0019bb2963f4.html#ixzz1jzPQuKaG
    Commissioner Ron Moody, who voted against both proposals, made it clear that he questioned whether the measures are ethical and the proper use of recreational hunters.
    Somebody really developing scruples ?

    • avatar william huard says:

      Instead of using the “mindless hunter” and see if it works, why don’t they just email the bison and ask them to ignore and disregard those “imprinted patterns” in their DNA that tell them to migrate out of the park in search of food…..
      Wildlife management policy based on a clueless admission that they really don’t have a fu%^ing clue what they are doing. Good grief

  49. avatar WM says:

    Colville Tribe to manage wolves. Integral to the effort they are doing a survey to determine what members want – Are wolve spiritually important to members/tribe? Will they interfere with subsistence hunting?

    ++ “That means the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation – a sovereign nation – will develop its own plan for managing them, Peone said.
    “We’re going to be managing them. And when I say manage, I mean we’re going to be removing some,” he said.++

    Read more here: http://www.tri-cityherald.com/2012/01/13/1785637/colville-tribe-to-manage-wolves.html#storylink=cpy

    • avatar Daniel Berg says:

      I’ve been waiting to hear something like this since you expressed your belief that the some of the tribes were less than enthusiastic about the return of the wolf.

      I’m curious about how this will all play out. One would think it could be politically damaging for a tribe to say flat out, “We don’t wanty ANY wolves on our reservation”. The question then becomes: How many?

    • avatar Ryan says:

      Have you seen how the tribes who don’t sell there to non native hunters manager their game. This isn’t going to be good.

    • avatar bret says:

      I find the last paragraph referring to the North Half interesting, the Colville Tribe will have a lot of influence with the WDFW in how they are managed.

      The Yakimas have been very quite though the wolf plan development (publicly) but if the antelope reintroduction is any gauge, they will also manage wolves as they fit.

      • avatar Salle says:

        That’s the nice thing about letting the tribes manage the wildlife on their lands, they have a good track record in most cases… most of them are doing better than state and fed agencies. It only works if you keep the state from having any jurisdiction with regard to tribal management, though.

        • avatar WM says:

          Salle,

          You have obviously not spent time around the Yakamas (sixth largest by population in the country), and some of the NW coastal tribes. In a word, some are “fickle” and do things their own way and lots of tribal members don’t always follow the rules – their own or non-native ones on or off reservation. The severely botched attempted whale kill by the Makah a couple years ago is one of many examples. Tribal sovereignty in the 21st Century is full of tension when dealing with state wildlife agencies, and will continue to escalate over time. Tribal member shoots an elk, and it doesn’t fall immediately, just shoot another one or two closer to the truck and take only the hind quarters, and if they feel like the extra effort maybe the backstrap or tenderloin. Happens alot. Why? They know they can get away with it.

          Here is a non-natural resource related one. The Yakamas are supposed to remit collected gas tax revenue back to the state, pursuant to an agreement. Huge audit going on right now, and because of sloppy book keeping, and maybe some other things.

          http://www.seattlepi.com/local/transportation/article/xxxx-1387067.php

          • avatar Salle says:

            I don’t have experience with those groups. Most of my NA acquaintance is with the northern Rockies, coastal New England and the SW desert and SoCal coast groups. I have relatives from the GL region.

            That’s unfortunate that some tribes’ cultures were so disrupted and fragmented that they lost their values that accompany the traditions they try to keep.

          • avatar WM says:

            Salle,

            It is also important to know how pre-European tribes treated each other. There are lots of stories there that challenge the romanticism of the American Indian. You need to read more.

            And, as you speak of the Indians of the SW keep in mind the story of this guy, leader of the Navajos at a critical time years back, Peter MacDonald (don’t let the name fool you). Read this, and tell me if you think he deserved a pardon from President Clinton.

            I hate to use Wikipedia as a source, but this summary tracks what I remember of MacDonald and his prosecution in 1989. He was every bit the slimeball as some of the Wall St. scum we occasionally chastise.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_MacDonald_(Navajo_leader)

            Corruption in Indian country today, and probably in history, is every bit as bad as the rest of America, then and now. I am concerned what the gambling/casino culture is doing to those lost (mythical in the minds of some) and even present, values, where gambling has become the life blood for some tribes.

          • avatar Mike says:

            ++ I am concerned what the gambling/casino culture is doing to those lost (mythical in the minds of some) and even present, values, where gambling has become the life blood for some tribes.++

            I’m worried about why we drop so many bombs on other countries, on why we can’t even afford to pay for our own sick people to receive treatment, but we can hold lavish galas and give away billions. I’m concerned with so many people shooting each other, and the lack of conservation values and the disturbing polls that indicate a majority of the country believes a virgin mother bave birth, and that an old man parted the sea, and that animals are things to be shot, not valued.

            A casino is pretty far down on my list.

          • avatar Elk275 says:

            Suck it up Mike that is the fabric of American. You have your beliefs and they have their beliefs. We all believe in something.

            I do not like the housing development on the Madison River any better than you. FYI, property values have never increased in the Madison Valley and those homes selling for less than what it cost to build them. I think that it is going to be many years before anymore homes are built.

          • avatar Mike says:

            As far as the Madison, it’s just not conducive to development aesthetics because there’s little tree cover. Any house built is just garish on the landscape. There’s nothing like fishing and seeing Bob mowin’ the lawn and oil dripping down the driveway from some pickup.

            It’s different with some of the other forested rivers. The homes blend in.

          • avatar Ryan says:

            “the disturbing polls that indicate a majority of the country believes a virgin mother bave birth, and that an old man parted the sea, and that animals are things to be shot, not valued.”

            Mike,

            Perhaps you should consider moving to another country. This country was started by christians who killed things and like it or not, is part of the fabric of our nation.

          • avatar Paul says:

            Ryan,

            Those same “Christians” that founded this country also thought that slavery was an acceptable part of our culture. I will give them credit though for having the foresight to put the “establishment clause” into the Constitution knowing that theocratic types would try to control the country through religion. They also allowed for the freedom or religion, or the freedom to have no religion. By telling someone that they should consider moving to another country because they do not want to be a part of the majority religion in this country goes against everything that this country was supposedly founded upon. If you choose to follow a religion that is fine, but don’t expect that others will fall into line or suggest that they leave the country if they do not.

          • avatar Ryan says:

            Paul,

            You missed my point, if one finds it so troublesome that people are still religious and believe in christianity, spending ones time in the rural US may not be the best choice. Although I would enjoy it to no end watching Mike spew his rhetoric at a rural watering hole anywhere between the cascades and Mississippi.

        • avatar Ryan says:

          Salle,

          Not even close, they consistently violate the ESA, hunt 9 months plua a year day and night with high powered rifles. The only ones who do worth a darn at managing their wildlife are the ones who sell outfitted hunts, then they have their tribe members just hunt off the rez..

          • avatar Salle says:

            Ryan,

            Somehow I suspect that your view of Native Americans is through that over-used lees, the anal sphincter. Wonder where I came up with that notion…?

    • avatar WM says:

      Sorry, it looks like the link pasted twice in succession. Try this:

      http://www.rferl.org/archive/Tajikistan/latest/668/668.html

      • avatar william huard says:

        Quick, dispatch the locals with pitchforks and shovels…..The wolves are coming, the wolves are coming. Today in Tajikistan, tommorrow in Idaho…..Better get those wolf-proof bus stop blueprints out.

        • avatar DT says:

          William,
          So basically you are saying that it wouldn’t happen here and that people being afraid is just a lot of people getting carried away?

          • avatar william huard says:

            You have a greater chance of being hit with lightning than being attacked by wolves. Period. There have been maybe 2 or 3 incidences of wolves being blamed for killing people in the last 50 years in North America.

    • avatar Mike says:

      I can’t believe people thought it was a good idea to build houses out in the open all along that river. It’s so tacky now. Quite a contrast fishing the North Fork of the Flathead and then rolling down to the Madison.

  50. avatar Salle says:

    Officials identify 700-year-old fir

    http://www.rmoutlook.com/article/20120112/RMO0801/301129999

    Hope no idiots think this one needs to be torched… I guess the fact that it’s in Canada is to its benefit.

  51. avatar CodyCoyote says:

    Montana transplant of Bighorn sheep gets derailed by state senator-adjacent landowner who says” Don’t ram this down our throats”. The Montana bighorn transplant plan was well aired out and adopted almost two years ago, yet this state senator says he just found out about it a few weeks ago…

    http://helenair.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/bighorn-transplant-called-off-neighbors-say-state-tried-to-ram/article_100401da-43fd-11e1-9906-0019bb2963f4.html

    • avatar Daniel Berg says:

      Do you ever hear of groups like Sportsman for Sportsman, etc., going against ranchers publicly over issues like this?

      • avatar CodyCoyote says:

        Answer: Never.

        But I do know some progressive ( or at least tolerant) ranchers. It’s those who realize they are merely guests on the landscape and not the landed aristocracy or otherwise petty lords over it; that being a rancher quite often brings with it a responsibility towards the public good and that quaint notion of Commonwealth . And we sure do need more of a general attitude reflecting commonwealth. That includes predators. The progressive rancher realizes predation is part of the whole. It’s a cost of doing business. Predators have a life , too, and already practice their form of commonwealth in the grander scheme.

        Sportsmen for Sportsmen , and most ranchers, and all cattlemen’s associations , scheme otherwise.

        Regrettably.

    • avatar Daniel Berg says:

      Cats really need to be indoor pets. Outdoor cats are a nuisance and have an average lifespan of only 4 years.

      My fiance only adopts cats from her rescue to people who sign an agreement saying they will keep the cat indoors (I realize they could easily disregard it).

      • avatar somsai says:

        Domestic cats are one of the worst invasive species having caused I’ve forgotten how many extinctions. Cats kill fifty times more birds in one day than the deepwater horizon did in the entire spill.

        • avatar Mike says:

          Does that excuse shooting someone’s pet in the head with an arrow?

          • avatar william huard says:

            Mike-
            It’s apparent Mr Somsai doesn’t like any animal except the huntable game for the freezer or the kind you hang on your wall. Killing cats is doin your civic duty. In hillbilly land that is. This particular incident was Alabama….”Mitt Wrongney and Newt Gingrich want to raise my taxes, That’s good enough for me” I’ll vote for em……

          • avatar Mike says:

            William –

            Somsai’s verson of “diviersity” is a tree farm beset by chicken pigs (aka grouse), bait station-fed white tails and a bass pond.

          • avatar somsai says:

            No it doesn’t excuse it, but my sympathy for the owner certainly doesn’t run deep.

          • avatar DT says:

            I’m sorry, I don’t mean to be controversial, but the same people who are condemning the person who shot a cat that was outside (and believe me, I think that was just so wrong that the cat got shot, I’m with them in that outcry! I feel for that poor little girl who had to see her kitty with an arrow in it’s head!) but these same people have/will also condemn another pet owner for leaving a pet outside and that pet gets killed by a coyote or a wolf. They say that is a ‘bad, irresponsible’ owner. I’m a little confused, why wasn’t the cat owner called a ‘bad irresponsible’ owner too for letting their cat outside, particularly one with kittens?

        • avatar Ryan says:

          If you keep your native species killing cat in you house or at minimum on your property, then you won’t have that problem.

          I am one of those guys BTW that if I see a house/feral cat on the public lands or on property I have permission on. Its life expectancy goes to goes from years to minutes.

          I keep my animals under control, its not too much to expect others to do the same. Feral cats are one of the biggest threats to native song birds in our contry and they have lead to extinctions of several species when they are introduced to a small ecosystem.

          • avatar william huard says:

            “I am one of those guys BTW that if I see a house/feral cat on the public lands or on property I have permission on. It’s life expectancy goes to goes from years to minutes.”
            I’m having trouble following your broken English Ryan. What are you trying to say- you’re a Bad%^& feral cat killer?
            You had better hope you don’t kill the wrong guys cat…..Maybe you can get some help for that Ryan.

          • avatar Ryan says:

            What I am saying is to keep your cats in you house and on your own property. If you can’t take care of them or have to many, get them euthanized. Don’t drop them off in the country to run free.

            They are a ******* ecological disaster on a level that is hard to comprehend.

            http://www.abcbirds.org/abcprograms/policy/cats/materials/predation.pdf

            There are estimates as high as half a billion song birds getting killed a year by pet and feral cats. Currently there are 33 known extinctions directly related to house cats.

            They get shot, don’t enjoy it, but I enjoy native wildlife enough that I can sleep just fine at night.

            Do you local wildlife a favor and keep your cats locked up.

          • avatar Mike says:

            ++I am one of those guys BTW that if I see a house/feral cat on the public lands or on property I have permission on. Its life expectancy goes to goes from years to minutes.++

            You are a piece of garbage.

          • avatar Ryan says:

            Coming from you… I’m going to take that as a compliment,

          • avatar Mark Gamblin (IDFG) says:

            Mike, William –
            This blog is “The Wildlife News” … emphasis on WILDLIFE. Feral cats, free-roaming “owned” cats are not wildlife but are indeed a serious source of mortality for song birds and other WILDLIFE as Ryan emphasized.

          • avatar william huard says:

            Really Mark? No kidding….I have 8 cats, and I know full well what they are capable of. All my cats are indoor cats. The difference between Ryan and me is I trap feral cats and bring them to a no-kill shelter instead of using them for target practice. Mark- maybe you can look up “Wildlife” in the dictionary. There are other animals other than your “huntable game” ie elk, deer and the other animals you kill, ie bears lions wolves that you manage so hunters can kill more elk and deer…..

          • avatar Ryan says:

            William,

            How often do you check your traps? Do you ever catch non target species? Do you catch all of the feral cats you target?

            Whats an acceptable body count of dead birds that allows you to justify letting these non native predators run free?

            Whats worse, to do something distasteful for the better good or to let your “feelings” lead to the needless death of songbirds?

          • avatar Nancy says:

            Hey Ryan, BTW ever want to shoot out the windows of your neighbor’s house?

            Lots of BIG cabins in my area, with BIG “gotta have those views” windows in many of them, windows that restrict & kill many birds, migrating thru areas, that were once free of any of those kinds of obstructions.

            At one of those cabins one day when a flock of little birds came thru – many of them hit the windows, full force, most didn’t survive the encounter.

            Your words – “Their life expectancy also “goes to goes” from years to minutes”

          • avatar Mike says:

            ++This blog is “The Wildlife News” … emphasis on WILDLIFE. Feral cats, free-roaming “owned” cats are not wildlife but are indeed a serious source of mortality for song birds and other WILDLIFE as Ryan emphasized.++

            Mark, do you condone Ryan’s statements concerning shooting any cat on public or private land?

          • avatar Ryan says:

            Nancy,

            You win, best argument yet.

            Let’s just ignore the feral cat issue, shift and deflect..

            Get the windows out of the equation and there is still the 480 million birds a year that get killed by cats.

            Got a decent way to deflect that number?

          • avatar william huard says:

            Ryan-
            I have trapped probably 20 feral cats over the last 8 years. I use havahart live traps. Sometimes the cats are smarter than the trap. My FIV cat CHANCE that I mentioned before, lived under a dumpster at a local hospital during the dead of winter 5 years ago before I finally “tricked him” with a special box trap that I borrowed from a cat rescue group…..
            This is a man made problem. The problem is “poverty” and a lack of education with regard to spay and neuter techniques. When I use the traps I don’t set them at night- when the skunks, opossums, and raccoons are out looking for food.
            Cats are killers- but it’s their nature. It’s like wolves- I have always been facinated when I hear hunters say how vicious wolves are when they kill…..
            I buy 2 40 pound bags of bird feed a week. I have families of orioles, red and yellow winged blackbirds, grayjays, cardinals- I enjoy birds as well. In fact, ALL wildlife is great.

          • avatar Ryan says:

            William,

            The problem we have in my area is at least 10 times that amount. We had a duck lease just south of town that we removed over 40 cats off of in 1 year. People would dump on average 20 to 30 cats a year there for all of the years I had control of it.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            William,

            I commend you for your dedication toward helping cats. The problem is that for every one person like you there are 10 who nightly put out food for feral cats and erase all the good that you do.

            In addition, the placement of food for cats attracts other somewhat less desirable critters of the evening, skunks, and the occasional raccoon. I had a friend with cats, skunks,and raccoons living under his modest sized deck at the same time. Once when I brought up to a one time neighbor the ill effects of feeding feral cats, I was rather rudely told to mind my own business.

          • avatar Mark Gamblin (IDFG) says:

            Mike –
            “Mark, do you condone Ryan’s statements concerning shooting any cat on public or private land?”
            Idaho has a long-standing policy (as do most other states) that uncontrolled dogs (or cats)in the act of attacking, chasing or presenting a threat to wildlife are subject to lethal removal – as in being shot by a Conservation Officer or other law enforecement officer. With the well documented knowledge that free roaming cats are a serious source of mortality for public wildlife – it is not only appropriate that free roaming cats could be shot, in certain situations it may be the most responsible action. I emphasize CERTAIN SITUATIONS because each must be evaluated on a case by case basis.

      • avatar JEFF E says:

        You are exactly right DT.
        This is an example of an irresponsible pet owner not taking care of there pet.
        Nothing more

        • avatar Mike says:

          It’s much more than that. It’s also an example of a probable psycopath in serious need of medical evaluation and assitance.

          • avatar DT says:

            I still think the owner is in part responsible, just as they would be if a wolf or coyote had killed the cat. Yes, people are supposed to know better and it makes me sick that the poor thing had been shot in the head.The person that did that probably does have some issues. However, the cat would not have been there in the first place if it had been kept inside with it’s kittens. It can’t be done both ways here. Owners need to be responsible for their pets.
            I wonder, as I’m getting more familiar with this blog and the people here, had that cat come home, badly mangled by a wolf or coyote, what would the reaction have been?

    • avatar william huard says:

      Just another hunter doin his “civic duty” Killing a family pet- “well it looked feral”

      • avatar CodyCoyote says:

        I’m a cat person. But even I was astounded at the number of feral cats roaming the Hawaiian islands of Oahu and Kauai when I visited. I arrived in Honolulu on a red eye from LAX and had a few overnight hours to kill so I headed over to the beachfronts on the eastern tip of the island by the Blowhole. The cats were thicker than flies on a week old cow carcass.

        But they were outnumbered by the feral Chickens on Kauai. Not kidding. I sat with my friend at a picnic table at a state park and we counted over 150 feral chickens just in our immediate surrounds.

        This was most unexpected…
        …as was the supposedly rare Hawaiian state bird, the NeNe Goose ( looks and acts just like a Canada honker) that walked right into my condo living room from the golf course fairway , in Princeville.

        We have upset the balance everywhere , methinks.

        • avatar Immer Treue says:

          Have a friend who lets his cats out. He feels miserable when his cats kill a bird, yet continues to let his cats out. I’ve heard the birds are pulling for a wolf or fisher to come along.

        • avatar Savebears says:

          The chickens on Kauai are protected by law, they are descendants of the original chickens that were on Capt. Cooks Boat. The NeNe’ is a very rare bird, when I lived in Hawaii, there were at that time, less than 50 known in the world, they have declined due to another animal imported into the Hawaiian islands to “Take Care of a Problem” The Mongoose were imported to kill off the rat population, that was in indigenous, it came in on the boats from Europe, unfortunately, the rats are nocturnal, the mongoose are daytime animals. Unfortunately the mongoose have developed a taste for NeNe’ eggs..

          The cats are another import that came off the boats, decedents of the cats that were suppose to take care of the rats!

          • avatar Savebears says:

            That was suppose to be, not indigenous, the rat did not live in the islands until the Europeans came.

  52. avatar Mike says:

    Bowhunter hits fawn in spine, watches it suffer:

    • avatar william huard says:

      That video is exactly why I really can’t stand hunters. What does he do instead of putting the fawn out of it’s misery? He tries to shoot the other deer…..And he’s a helluva shot……

      • avatar Mike says:

        That, right there, William, is where the wolf hate comes form. That ignorance, that lack of ethics.

      • avatar Savebears says:

        And your statement William is why I really can’t stand some conservationists., this video is terrible, but it is not hunters, it is a hunter as in ONE!

        • avatar william huard says:

          Yeah you keep sayin that Save Bears……These incidents sure do add up don’t they. I don’t know one “conservationist” that would do that to an animal. I know plenty of slob hunters that would though.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            William,

            I don’t know one nurse who would put their patients out of misery, but we keep seeing stories that contradict that? Care to explain..

          • avatar Savebears says:

            If I remember right they call Nurses that do this: “Angles Of Mercy” Correct me if I am wrong, but I have watched many stories of this behavior on the true crime channels, have read about them in the news, and if I am not mistaken, you are a nurse?

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Opps, that was suppose to be angels of mercy, right letters wrong order! Yikes, I am SURE I will be called on that mistake.

          • avatar william huard says:

            Is that a 90 degree angle of mercy? If I were you I would just go for the trapezoid.
            Let me get this straight- you are trying to make a connection between a few nurses and the thousands of slob hunters who practice unethical behavior on a daily basis?

          • avatar Savebears says:

            William,

            Neither incidence is mainstream, and you god damn well know it.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            As I said, I knew I would be called on my typing in error, typical of you and a few others.

          • avatar william huard says:

            You see SaveBears- people that are compassionate about animals are affected when we see videos like the cat video. As I sit here right now- two of my formerly feral cats are playing in the hallway……they are a joy to have around. The thought of some Ass^%pe shooting one of them in the head with freaking arrow makes me see red…..nothing would save them if I got my hands on them. Trust and believe that….

          • avatar Savebears says:

            William, you conveniently seem to forget, that those of us that are ethical hunters feel the same. Stop with the damn “lumping us all together”

          • avatar Savebears says:

            And I don’t believe your statement of Trust and believe that, you have experienced death in a controlled environment..

          • avatar Mike says:

            SB –

            I called you an “ethical hunter” previously. But I have to ask, are you still using lead bullets?

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Mike,

            As I have said in the past, I don’t use Bullets you Dip, I have not hunted with a gun for many years, I use a bow, with wood arrows and steel broadheads, are you stupid or just choose to ignore anything other than your view of things?

          • avatar Ryan says:

            The lead bullet argument is such a red herring its not even funny.

            If it is so bad, why did the EPA under Clinton fail to ban it or even try. I believe it was called a non issue.

            And the article I am sure you’ll site about the elevated lead in some 736 tested hunters, was well below the CDC’s threshold for concern.

            In the grand scheme of shit to worry about, this doesn’t even move the needle.

            +1 on save bears, you two can both go to hell.

            William,

            If you really want to help wildlife, get rid of every feral cat you see and keep your cats in the house. 100 times the problem that lead is for native fauna and flora.

          • avatar WM says:

            Ryan,

            ++The lead bullet argument is such a red herring its not even funny.

            If it is so bad, why did the EPA under Clinton fail to ban it or even try. I believe it was called a non issue.++

            The reason EPA did nothing is two fold. The research apparently was not conclusive during the Clinton years, AND,importantly there is specific statutory exclusion for regulation of ammunition under the Toxic Subtances Control Act. The Center for Biological Diversity filed a petition to EPA seeking to regulate lead in both fishing and hunting applications. EPA chose not to do anything on the fishing side apparently because most lead in water (unless eaten by waterfowl, so I think individual states have banned it) is believed to be biologically unavailable.

            http://www.epa.gov/oppt/chemtest/pubs/Petition%20Attachment.pdf

            http://www.usnews.com/news/washington-whispers/articles/2010/08/27/epa-surrenders-to-nra-on-gun-control-issue-epa-rejects-attempt-to-regulate-lead-in-bullets-after-nra-protests

            The current regulation of lead shot ban for waterfowl hunting as of 1991 is pursuant to USFWS authority under the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

          • avatar Mike says:

            ++The lead bullet argument is such a red herring its not even funny.

            If it is so bad, why did the EPA under Clinton fail to ban it or even try. I believe it was called a non issue.

            And the article I am sure you’ll site about the elevated lead in some 736 tested hunters, was well below the CDC’s threshold for concern.

            In the grand scheme of shit to worry about, this doesn’t even move the needle.

            +1 on save bears, you two can both go to hell.

            ++

            Ryan you are off the charts crazy. First you imply you shoot cats you see on public or private property you have permission on. Now here you are claiming that lead bullet fragments don’t do anything. You’re an embarrassment to anyone who considers themselves an outdorosman.

            You’re also a hunter. And there’s a heck of a lot of guys in the hunting community just like you – pissed off a t the world because they made stupid decisions in life so they take it out on things they have control over–things that breathe and walk.These are the same guys who hate wolves, who pass on the misinformation about predators.

            Yeah. lead bullet fragments do nothing. They only kill a ton of wildlife. But they do it one of the most horrific ways you could possibly imagine. The effects of lead poisoning are a nightmare–the stuff of horror novels. Unfortunately they are real, and caused by slobs who use lead bullets.

            The following videos show you what LEAD BULLETS do to the national symbol. It is horrific. The second video will make you cry. But hey, GOOD THING you use lead bullets.

            Lead bullet fragments causes mass suffering in bald eagles:

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sn1IRYJ_480

            WARNING: Horrific video of paralyzed, tormented bald eagle poisoned by lead bullet fragments from deer carcass:

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NyZLxobg5k0

            Ryan, do everyone a favor and put the guns down. Put them down and start going to your local library. Read a lot. Don’t talk or type so much, but read.

          • avatar Ryan says:

            Nice videos, don’t care to watch them as they have nothing to do with the discussion.

            There are numerous other sources of lead in the enviroment. Tire weights, lead paint, fish with high lead contents from industrial pollution. To say it is all bullet related is a stretch at best.

            I hunt and fish because I like to know where my food comes from, not because I am pissed at the world. From an enviromental stand point, You’d be hard pressed to find meat readily availaible with less enviromental impact.

            I have no urge to be like you or find anything about the lifestyle you have hinted to on this site appealing to me. Enjoy sharing pictures with your urbainite friends, I’ll coninue to invite mine over for barbecues.

            So what is your take on the feral cat problem, how do you solve that?

            BTW, here is a victim of a cat attach

          • avatar Mike says:

            ++Nice videos, don’t care to watch them as they have nothing to do with the discussion.

            There are numerous other sources of lead in the enviroment. Tire weights, lead paint, fish with high lead contents from industrial pollution. To say it is all bullet related is a stretch at best.++

            This is one of the dumbest things I’ve ever read on this forum. That eagle ingested lead from a deer carcass.

            For you to assert that the mass poisoning of wildlife by lead bullet fragments doesn’t exist is just plain crazy.

            Pleae, please, before you pick up your guns, go to the library and read. Learn about the ecosystem. Learn about species that don’t have a hunting season. Learn about the flora.

            As for cats and birds, are you joking? We’re humans. We’re supposed to be smarter. Hunters have a choice in using lead bullets. Many choose not to. a cat has an instinct to attack birds. It’s compulsive, and they have no control over it.

          • avatar Ryan says:

            Mike,

            The cat problem is a human created issue, whether or not it is their instinct, how do you solve it?

            As for the rest of it, pull your head out of you ass and look at the problem objectively instead of with the goal to villify hunting and guns..

        • avatar Mike says:

          It’s not just one, Savebears. That’s what you don’t get. Ethical hunters such as yourself are not the majority.

          • avatar william huard says:

            Save Bears is in denial. The truth hurts……It’s just one Mike. multiplied by thousands.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Mike and William, you can both go to hell

          • avatar Mike says:

            Hey Savebears –

            Wht’s the deal? We’ve been conversing on this forumf or many years and we have disagreements, but what’s all that about? Yeah you use lead bullets. I wish you didn’t. That doesn’t mean I’d ever wish things to go badly for you.

            Chill out man. If we ever met, I’d shake your hand, disagreements or not.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            Mike,

            SB said he does not use bullets, he uses a bow, and has said that ***many*** times in this forum.

            Mike and William,

            SB is one of the individuals with whom you want to work. Bitching at someone with whom you feel comfortable is completely counterproductive to the cause for wildlife in general, and predators like wolves in particular.

            There are many out there who would feel more than comfortable locking horns with you, and it’s not very difficult to find them.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Mike the last time I used a bullet to kill anything was in 1991, in the suburbs of Baghdad, I have not hunted with a gun since then, I hunt with a bow, wood arrows and steel broadheads. I will be happy to post a picture of my hunting equipment.

          • avatar Mike says:

            Immer –

            The same goes for William and I. I see Savebears as an ally. But he is a bit of an apologist and that’s where we get into trouble.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            Mike,

            I’m sorry, but I have to disagree. SB has, in my opinion, never apologized for anyone. He has been in harmony with all that has been said about poachers and “slob” hunting, and what should be done with them. He hunts to put meat on the table, as do most ethical hunters.

            Most hunters that I know are very ethical. They like to hunt, and eat what they kill. If one eats meat, these are the folks who are willing to do the tough work, rather than have others do it for them. Sure there are hunters, who may be hunters in name only, and the video you posted is a case in point as are the sites that show hunting infractions. Yet, I don’t think I’d be wrong in saying that the vast, and I mean vast majority of hunters are quite ethical.

            Not to sound the doubting Thomas, but I do feel safer when the hunting season is over.

          • avatar Mike says:

            ++Yet, I don’t think I’d be wrong in saying that the vast, and I mean vast majority of hunters are quite ethical. ++

            That is absolute fantasy.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Mike,

            My biggest problem with you and William is your continued postings that say ethical hunters are a fantasy, when was the last time you actually spent any time with hunters? I spend day in and day out with hunters and I shun poachers and unethical hunters, I don’t think they should be able to hunt.

          • avatar Mike says:

            SB –

            When you can simply go on youtube and find endless examples of poor ethics, and when even outdoor shows(and their hosts!) get busted or display poor ethics, it’s not a small portion of the hunting community. That reflects a huge sample size. Even by using lead bullets hunters are unethical. Do you have any idea what lead bullet fragments due to the wildlife population? Most ungulate hunters are using lead.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Mike,

            I can go on Youtube and find many examples of just about any subject or issue I want to, both for or against, just depends on which side of an issue you are on. But if you look you are sure to find stuff that supports your position.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            As far as lead, they are going to continue to use it as long as it is legal and cheap.

          • avatar william huard says:

            Save Bears-

            You’ll be on your way to hell long before I will. Your comment about lead shows just how selfish hunters are. Lead is clearly a cause of animal mortality. The Cal condor is the best example… Instead of acting on behalf of wildlife concervation- groups like SCI an NRA frame the attack on lead as an attack on hunter rights…..How predictable and even worse- how dishonest…..
            You’re hypocrites- you talk about being ethical and then you hide behind the hunting status quo.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            William,

            What is it with you, I am no hypocrite, I simply made and honest and true statement about lead, if it is cheap and legal they will continue to use it. I made no indication one way or another whether I agree with it. I am not a member of any hunting organizations, I am pretty much a lone hunter.

            I have never “hid” behind any status quo, I speak out on the things that I find wrong, I have done it hundreds of times over the years on this very blog.

          • avatar DT says:

            My brothers, husband and cousins all hunt. We eat whatever it is they manage to shoot. It seems like William and Mike just don’t like hunters period. I don’t think my relatives are unethical! This makes me really sad to see this, though it probably doesn’t matter to those who seem to believe only what they want to.

          • avatar DT says:

            Though, in retrospect, it really shouldn’t matter what others say or choose to believe. I know that the people I love don’t shoot just to shoot. They don’t torture. They don’t like snares or traps. They don’t hunt to put something on the wall.

            Also, that video clip about the fawn? I did not watch it, nor will I. Seeing wild life tortured isn’t high on my list of entertainment or on the list of ‘to see’ videos. Same goes for all the pictures I’ve seen of livestock or pets that have been killed by wolves.

          • avatar Elk275 says:

            What is the alternative to bullets with lead in them, Mike? What are there limitations and why one not want to use them? Who makes them? Why in a large sporting goods store maybe only 5% of the ammunition is lead free? There lots of things you do not know or understand, I would suggest that you go the library and study ballistics.

        • avatar WM says:

          Addendum to comment to Ryan,

          Sorry, delete ” (unless eaten by waterfowl, so I think individual states have banned it)”

          To clarify: AS stated at the bottom of the earlier post, FWS regulates lead from shotgun pellets under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Individual states incorporate the lead ban regulation into their hunting rules for waterfowl, because they are “migratory birds” and covered by the MBTA.

          However, lead shot is still legal for upland birds (pheasant, quail, grouse) and for rabbits and other small game, unless an individual state has made prohibition.

    • avatar somsai says:

      Internet poster, posts you tube of deer suffering so all can watch.

      Mike? Mike Vic?

    • avatar aves says:

      Bobcats and House cats. That’s what 99.9 % of people are seeing. I get sent photos and videos all the time. It would be funny if people weren’t so darn certain about it. They always have no doubt about what they’ve seen (or somebody they know has seen) and are unwilling to even consider any chance of error on their part. Most also believe the government is secretly releasing these cougars (and wolves and rattlesnakes) to reduce the deer population. Why? Because they saw a “fed” walk into the woods with radio-tracking equipment (or just a backpack for the rattlers). That’s ofcourse the same federal government others insist falsely declared the eastern cougar extinct.

      The last person quoted in the article, Bill Betty is a typical example. He insists cougars are well established in the East, claims to have seen 14 up close and that his family has seen another 30, that he has chased them away from kids, and says anyone who disagrees with him is a liar. The more these “eyewitnesses” talk the less credible they become.

      Some rational people have just been mistaken and a token few have actually seen a cougar. But there’s no breeding population and no vast governmental conspiracy. As the media so often does these days, this article gives all sources equal weight regardless of their credibility. So there will now be a sharp increase in the amount of cougar sightings by people 100% certain of what they saw, but with no corroboration or evidence, just an insistence that they’re right.

  53. avatar Elk275 says:

    Mike and William

    What are lead bullets? Ether one of you understand bullet usage or construction or terminal ballistics. The use of lead bullets for hunting is all most nil. Most hunters use a cup and core or a bonded bullet, both of these bullets have a lead core that is jacketed with copper. Lead bullets are cast and do not expand and are not as accurate as jacketed bullets. The newer bonded bullets have a weight retention of 95 percent and nearly a 100 percent pass though. Any bullet fragment would be found in front shoulder which is retrieve. I an on my I phone and that is enough hunting and pecking on the key board.

    • avatar WM says:

      From the article:

      ++ Owners of livestock, guard animal or domestic animals may shoot or destroy wolves that pose an immediate threat to their animals on property they own or lease, in accordance with local statutes. “Immediate threat” means observing a gray wolf in the act of stalking, attacking or killing livestock, a guard animal or a domestic pet under the supervision of the owner.

      In addition, the owner of a domestic pet may shoot or destroy a gray wolf posing an immediate threat on any property, as long as the owner is supervising the pet.

      In all cases, a person shooting or destroying a gray wolf under these provisions must protect all evidence and report the taking to a DNR conservation officer within 48 hours. The wolf carcass must be surrendered to the conservation officer.

      In the southern two-thirds of Minnesota (Zone B), a person may shoot a gray wolf at any time to protect livestock, domestic animals or pets on land they own, lease or manage.++

      Any guesses on how many wolves will be removed under those conditions in the next six months, assuming there is no litigation challenge to the delisting, putting the plan on hold?

      • avatar Immer Treue says:

        WM,

        I’d like to see if the state legislators remain out of the way and allow the DNR to do their job. I would think greater impact in the agricultural zone, less the farther toward and into Superior national Forest and on into the BWCA.

        Farmers and ranchers will most likely make the most noise about more wolves culled with deer hunters not far behind. I’d like to see the DNR hold their ground.

  54. avatar Immer Treue says:

    jon,

    I only just recently saw your question about the deer hunters in MN wanting 750 wolf quota. Odd in who one talks to. My place is just a short distance from Ely, and one friend who hunts my land, and a store owner in Ely who is, I think, a lifetime resident both say there are too many deer. I see deer all over, and I have seen wolves this Winter, as well as their tracks around my place. Conclusion plenty of deer and plenty of wolves.

    Talk to others a bit closer to the BWCA and deer hunting success supposedly goes down. Talk to others and they say that’s rubbish. One thing, until just recently, there has been very little snow, which hurts wolf hunting success on deer.

    750 deer in addition to the 200 or so a year removed by the DNR is a bit steep. 500 or so in addition is probably sustainable. Stark says to start conservatively and see what happens, and not during the deer season(s). Who will make the loudest noise, and how involved will the politicians get? Currently, the plan seems to have the full support of the IWC. The IWC is an educational center, not one of advocacy, yet, I can’t help but think, if the wolf kill moves over the top, the IWC has enough influence to make noise in all the correct places.

    Just my take on it for now.

    • avatar jon says:

      Immer, did you hear that the Minnesota dnr doesn’t want the wolf season to be during the deer season?

      http://www.startribune.com/sports/outdoors/137799268.html

      Do you think bill hf 1856 is going anywhere? Minnesota seems to have the best wolf plan so far out of all of the states with wolves. We’ll see what happens in the upcoming months.

      • avatar Immer Treue says:

        jon,

        mixed feelings. I wish everyone would just let the DNR alone the first year rather than get into the kill frenzy. The trigger itch of the few makes me nervous, not so much for the wolves, but more for me and my dog(s).

        Probably more than obvious that a wolf season after the deer season will mean less wolves killed (not a bad idea for season 1). Because of the hunting density, I think quite a few wolves would be taken initially if wolf hunts coincide with deer rifle season.

        I’ll repeat, that i have more concern/fear of the hunters that do not properly ID their targets than I ever have for wolves. The whole thing boils down to, will the legislators allow the MNDNR to do their jobs, or will they bend to the will of the vocal hunters/ranchers. The need to mangage is there. The kill frenzy that exists in some circles also needs to be managed.

        The short of it, if wolf season follows deer rifle season, SSS will be more prevalent, but wolf coats will be better. Look at some of the comments made, and it moves me toward the anti-hunting side of all arguments. I know it is a few loud mouths when compared to the whole, but to echo what I have said above and before, I now have concern where the concern never before existed.

  55. avatar WM says:

    Wild life news, sort of, since in involves the wildwood weed and a favorite MT judge responsible for interpreting federal law:

    http://missoulian.com/news/local/molloy-federal-law-trumps-montana-s-medical-marijuana-law/article_84a4a4b8-45f6-11e1-b755-0019bb2963f4.html

  56. avatar Peter Kiermer says:

    Wolf Couple Repopulates Germany
    http://www.globalanimal.org/2012/01/23/wolf-couple-repopulates-germany/63964/
    Read on for how wolves are rediscovering Western Europe. Not much news in this article actually but a good English language summary of the scene.

  57. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Wolf Couple Repopulates Germany
    http://www.globalanimal.org/2012/01/23/wolf-couple-repopulates-germany/63964/
    Read on for how wolves are rediscovering Western Europe. Not much news actually in this article but a good English language summary of the scene.

  58. avatar Nancy says:

    Thank you Kathie Lynch, for the Yellowstone Wolf Update!!

  59. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/01/21/2599839/those-big-snakes-are-here-to-stay.html#disqus_thread
    Nobody seems really interested to counter these alien snakes and save the Florida wildlife. Farther in the west, all available measures, from trap to air war, are considered and none of these seems too expensive, to decimate wolves (the alien, giant Canadian ones). But down there in the Everglades? Could it be, that not enough hunting opportunities, ranching or other commercial interests are involved and therefore nobody gives a sh.. about the wildlife there? Or is it, that hunting these dumb snakes is hard work and not really sexy. Who would want a stuffed Boa on the wall? At least Florida Nuisance Wildlife Removal is fully up to date and has a tasty Python recipe online in preparation of the proposed flooding of the meat market with snake. A cold crisp Chardonnay goes well with these Python steakes. Only, the flooding does not come….

  60. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Ok, there will be a bobcat management plan in New York State. Not very spectacular news so far. But, a new (to me at least) facet of wording comes up here: Bobcat are considered a “resource”. Resource for what? Is their pelt still in high demand? Ah, yes, I see, some of you eat bobcat bushmeat. In the article, they are also talking about some common and some conflicting interests by the different users of the bobcat “resource”, namely the trappers/hunters, versus the watchers/photographers. However, one of the goals of the management plan is “Provide for sustainable use and enjoyment of bobcat by the public”. Do the different western wolf management plans say something similar about enjoyment of wolves?? http://www.northcountrygazette.org/2012/01/23/bobcat_plan/

  61. avatar IDhiker says:

    Last night on Montana Public Radio (KUFM) was an “Evening Edition” featuring Montana FWP Commissioner Ron Moody.

    This is the most REASONED piece I have ever heard from any commissioner or state wildlife official. What Commissioner Moody has to say is extremely worthy of our attention. It would also benefit Idaho officials (including Mark Gamblin) to listen in, also.

    I’m not a computer whiz, but you google KUFM, click on “podcasts” in the upper right, then “Montana Evening Edition Features,” followed by “Montana Evening Edition Archives,” and you’ll find the piece there. It’s about 14 minutes.

    I only wish all commissioners were made of the same stuff as Moody. Perhaps we wouldn’t be where we are now.

    • avatar Salle says:

      Here’s a link, I think, that could lead you to the broadcast…

      http://www.mtpr.net/program_info/2012-01-23-132

    • avatar Immer Treue says:

      Good interview. When I hear this type of converstation, I think of others involved in the issue that speak in a level-headed fashion about a very hot topic. One realizes that the common ground is in the middle, and wish that the closer to the extremes on either side of the issue one gets, they would become increasingly more quiet.

      • avatar Salle says:

        Or perhaps just less media attention?

        • avatar Jerry Black says:

          Bob Ream seems level headed also. He and Moody voted for a ban on lead shot in parts of Montana, but the other 3 voted against it saying “there’s not enough evidence that lead in harmful to the environment”.

  62. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    From Jackson Hole news and Guide:
    Cache Creek lioness caged, kits still roam
    http://www.jhnewsandguide.com/article.php?art_id=8174
    “These management issues all come down to what the public is willing to accept and tolerate,” “It becomes a moral and a lifestyle decision. Are we willing to live with some of these animals in our region or not?” Seemingly….not!

    • avatar WM says:

      Peter,

      Seems this cat and her kits were ….habituated.

      +++Dogs, cracker shells and Zon guns — propane-based devices that make a loud noise — did not scare the cougar family away.

      Game and Fish personnel also removed her kills. The female cat killed deer on private land and was lurking under cars and in abandoned buildings, Gocke said.+++

      If authorities failed to act and someone was injured/killed, the suit for damages would quickly follow, as would a hefty settlement from state coffers.

  63. avatar WM says:

    Wolves considered(?) to cull elk at Great Sand Dunes Nat. Monument.

    http://www.chieftain.com/news/region/wolves-to-be-considered-for-culling-elk-herds/article_f3bb655c-4719-11e1-9fa5-001871e3ce6c.html

    This will never happen – The San Luis Valley has lots of cows on private land.

  64. avatar Mal Adapted says:

    400 years of tradition within the old hispanic culture of New Mexico complicates the public-lands grazing issue:

    New Mexico ranchers sue USFS over grazing reductions

    At a news conference outside Santa Fe’s federal courthouse Monday, Rio Arriba County Commission Chairman Felipe Martinez and the presidents of two area stockmen’s associations accused the Forest Service of trying to destroy Hispanic communities by curtailing grazing, integral to northern New Mexico’s traditional subsistence farming and ranching economy.

    Maybe WWP should get involved?

  65. avatar Jerry Black says:

    Montana May Raise Hunting and Fishing License Fees
    http://missoulian.com/news/state-and-regional/fwp-may-raise-hunting-fishing-fees-to-make-up-for/article_846d25c2-448b-11e1-94f7-001871e3ce6c.html

    Save Bears….seems like a good time to submit your $50 wildlfe watcher fee. I think it’s a good idea,

  66. avatar Immer Treue says:

    Minnesota DNR wolf season proposal

    http://www.wolf.org/wolves/news/live_news_detail.asp?id=7307

    Now let’s see if it holds or the politicians, and those who think it’s not enough yell loud enough. Roughly 25% of the MN wolf population.

    • avatar Immer Treue says:

      OOOOOOops. Big sorry to all. So much for calculus. About 13% of population

      • avatar jon says:

        Until the quota is filled. That means that pregnant wolves could be trapped and killed.

        • avatar Immer Treue says:

          jon,

          I don’t think that is likely, again if the MNDNR is left alone to run the season.

        • avatar somsai says:

          Killing pregnant wolves is one of the best methods of control as it can not only eliminate the female and any pups but potentially keep that pack from reproducing for a little while. (Or that’s my assumption based on my limited interest in canines) I know there is a “good” time of the year to hunt coyotes for control, other times not as effective.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            I believe this is in conflict with the the North American Wildlife Conservation Plan.

            But then again, does this plan apply to wolves, or just the meat on the table wildlife?

            Killing females with pups will more than likely create a reactionary uproar.

          • avatar IDhiker says:

            Somsai,

            You should listen to the comments that Montana FWP Commissioner Ron Moody gave on the KUFM interview. I mentioned this interview in a previous post.

            Moody says the killing of females with pups is unethical and gives sportsmen a black eye. His interview is 13 minutes – its worth your time to listen to it. I’m assuming you haven’t, because if you had, you wouldn’t make such comments.

          • avatar william huard says:

            Somsai is proud of the fact that he is unethical. Slob hunters live!!!!

  67. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Jaguars Are Threatened by Copper Mining – Take Action
    http://www.care2.com/causes/protect-wildlife-stop-the-rosemont-copper-project-in-arizona-video.html#ixzz1kZFv7WFQ
    They are talking about “your” Jaguar, down there in Az.

  68. avatar Doryfun says:

    Is it just me? Or did anyone else who saw Obama’s speech have some concerns with this statement from his talk: “But with only 2 percent of the world’s oil reserves, oil isn’t enough. This country needs an all-out, all-of-the-above strategy thatdevelops every available source of American energy – a strategy that’s
    cleaner, cheaper, and full of new jobs.”

    Does this mean places like AK’s ANWR?

    Hoover Dam, also mentioned in the speech, came at great expense, not mentioned.

    I am hoping this statement will pan out:
    “We have subsidized oil companies for a century. That’s long enough. It’s time to end the taxpayer giveaways to an industry that’s rarely been more profitable, and double-down on a clean energy industry that’s never been more promising. Pass clean energy tax credits and
    create these jobs.”

    I just hope clean energy includes maintaining the integrity of “at least” our wildlife refuge system.

    • avatar Paul says:

      From the comments:

      “What keeps wolves in balance?
      Wolves kill for sport.FACT
      We need to keep the numbers down on LIBS,when thier numbers are up everything goes south.”

      Did these people even know what a “liberal” was before Fox News?

    • avatar jb says:

      Unfortunately, this plea-like so many others-will fall on deaf (dumb?) ears.

    • avatar JEFF E says:

      “In 1992, three years before wolves were reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park and central Idaho, the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks official estimate of the elk herd was 89,000 elk in Montana. Today we have a statewide estimate of 150,000 elk.

      In 2003, the state Legislature passed a bill that required FWP biologists bring elk numbers down to the targeted objective populations laid out in the statewide elk plan. They were responding to complaints from ranchers about too many elk on their private land.”

      Indeed

  69. avatar Immer Treue says:

    Newspaper report on proposed Minnesota wolf season.

    http://www.duluthnewstribune.com/event/article/id/221038/

    • avatar Paul says:

      From the article:

      “In the southern two-thirds of the state, wolves can essentially be shot by property owners at any time on their own land.”

      I assume that this means that wolves can be shot for any reason just for being on property and not threatening livestock or pets? I really hope this has some caveats. Shades of Wyoming here?

      • avatar Immer Treue says:

        The Wolf Management Plan has provisions for taking wolves that are posing risks to livestock and domestic pets. Owners of livestock, guard animal or domestic animals may shoot or destroy wolves that pose an immediate threat to their animals on property they own or lease, in accordance with local statutes. “Immediate threat” means observing a gray wolf in the act of stalking, attacking or killing livestock, a guard animal or a domestic pet under the supervision of the owner.

        In addition, the owner of a domestic pet may shoot or destroy a gray wolf posing an immediate threat on any property, as long as the owner is supervising the pet.

        In all cases, a person shooting or destroying a gray wolf under these provisions must protect all evidence and report the taking to a DNR conservation officer within 48 hours. The wolf carcass must be surrendered to the conservation officer.

        In the southern two-thirds of Minnesota (Zone B), a person may shoot a gray wolf at any time to protect livestock, domestic animals or pets on land they own, lease or manage. The circumstance of “immediate threat” does not apply. A DNR conservation officer must be notified within 48 hours and the wolf carcass must be surrendered to the conservation officer. Also in Zone B, a person may employ a state-certified gray wolf predator controller to trap wolves on or within one mile of land they own, lease or manage.

        Unlike federal regulations, state regulations allow harassment of wolves that are within 500 yards of people, buildings, livestock or domestic pets to discourage wolves from contacting people and domestic animals. Wolves cannot be attracted or searched out for purposes of harassment and cannot be physically harmed.

        Similar to federal regulations, Minnesota’s Wolf Management Plan allows anyone to take a wolf to defend human life. Any wolves taken must be reported to a DNR conservation officer within 48 hours, and evidence must be protected.

  70. avatar SEAK Mossback says:

    Another apparent cost of salmon farming, focusing consumption high on the food chain in general combined with lax international fishery management — depletion of a major fish stock used as feed in aquaculture, raising pigs, etc. that could directly feed far more people:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/25/science/earth/in-mackerels-plunder-hints-of-epic-fish-collapse.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1

  71. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Conclusions of Trophy Hunting Study Has Lions, Animal Conservation and Welfare Groups Roaring in Disapproval
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jeffrey-flocken/african-lion-extinction-_b_1218655.html

    • avatar william huard says:

      The problem is “Conservation Force” (get the irony in the name) continues to artificially boost lion numbers for the trophy hunting industry. This is all about corruption at the expense of this iconic animal.
      When all the lions are gone- how will the slobs at SCI sleep without polar bear or lion trophies?

    • avatar Ryan says:

      I don’t know William, how will all of you sleep if you get Lion hunting ended and population plummets because the economic incentive to protect them is gone?

      • avatar Nancy says:

        Good response Ryan, and if I’m mistaken, my apologies, but guessing it comes from someone who could care less about the ultimate outcome, either eay.

      • avatar Ryan says:

        Nancy,

        I do care if Lions are gone, I have no urge to hunt one, but IMHO the world would be a much worse place without them. Studies have proven without a shadow of a doubt that in Africa, the countries that allow trophy hunting maintain healthy populations of native wildlife and the ones that don’t the number are plummeting due to bush meat and poaching. In our socitety, we have time to apprecite things, I would guess in theirs that making ends meat is the only goal, hence the lack of intrensic value given to widlife.

        • avatar JB says:

          Ryan:

          There are definitely studies that have shown that sport hunting can be useful in incentivizing conservation of hunted species. However, those incentives do not necessarily translate into stable or increasing populations–particularly with species (like lions) that engage in infanticide.

          Check out this article:

          “Sport hunting has provided important economic incentives for conserving large predators since the early 1970’s, but wildlife managers also face substantial pressure to reduce depredation. Sport hunting is an inherently risky strategy for controlling predators as carnivore populations are difficult to monitor and some species show a propensity for infanticide that is exacerbated by removing adult males. Simulation models predict population declines from even moderate levels of hunting in infanticidal species, and harvest data suggest that African countries and U.S. states with the highest intensity of sport hunting have shown the steepest population declines in African lions and cougars over the past 25 yrs. Similar effects in African leopards may have been masked by mesopredator release owing to declines in sympatric lion populations, whereas there is no evidence of overhunting in non-infanticidal populations of American black bears. Effective conservation of these animals will require new harvest strategies and improved monitoring to counter demands for predator control by livestock producers and local communities.”

          http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0005941

        • avatar Ryan says:

          JB,

          While I agree to a point, look at countries like Kenya where wildlife is vitually extinct outside of the national parks because hunting is not allowed.

          From anecdotal evidence, the cougar population in my state has doubled in the last 20 years as has it in many states. I don’t see the validity of his argument with regards to north american big cat populations. It seems as though as in many cases, a researcher had a personal point to make and tailored his study to meet that end.

          • avatar JB says:

            Ryan: Don’t confuse correlation with causation. Kenya’s wildlife does very well with near total protection in National Parks, so we could use the same logic to conclude that all carnivores should be totally protected.

            The point here is recognizing the limitations of the “hunt to conserve” model (just as there are limitations to the National Parks model), and acknowledging that one “size” doesn’t necessarily fit all of the conditions under which carnivores will need to be conserved.

            I would suggest that hunting carnivores works as a model of conservation when harvest pressure is low AND/OR the trophy status of the species is highly valued.

            ——

            Since you brought up cougars…

            http://www.bioone.org/doi/abs/10.2193/0022-541X%282006%2970%5B1588:CELIUI%5D2.0.CO%3B2

            Currently, 11 western states and 2 Canadian provinces use sport hunting as the primary mechanism for managing cougar (Puma concolor) populations. Yet the impacts of sustained harvest on cougar population dynamics and demographic structure are not well understood. We evaluated the effects of hunting on cougar populations by comparing the dynamics and demographic composition of 2 populations exposed to different levels of harvest. We monitored the cougar populations on Monroe Mountain in south-central Utah, USA, and in the Oquirrh Mountains of north-central Utah from 1996 to 2004. Over this interval the Monroe population was subjected to annual removals ranging from 17.6–51.5% (mean ± SE = 35.4 ± 4.3%) of the population, resulting in a >60% decline in cougar population density. Concurrently, the Oquirrh study area was closed to hunting and the population remained stationary. Mean age in the hunted population was lower than in the protected population (F = 9.0; df = 1, 60.3; P = 0.004), and in a pooled sample of all study animals, females were older than males (F = 13.8; df = 1, 60.3; P < 0.001). Females from the hunted population were significantly younger than those from the protected population (3.7 vs. 5.9 yr), whereas male ages did not differ between sites (3.1 vs. 3.4 yr), suggesting that male spatial requirements may put a lower limit on the area necessary to protect a subpopulation. Survival tracked trends in density on both sites. Levels of human-caused mortality were significantly different between sites (χ2 = 7.5; P = 0.006). Fecundity rates were highly variable in the protected population but appeared to track density trends with a 1-year lag on the hunted site. Results indicate that harvest exceeding 40% of the population, sustained for ≥4 years, can have significant impacts on cougar population dynamics and demographic composition. Patterns of recruitment resembled a source–sink population structure due in part to spatially variable management strategies. Based on these observations, the temporal scale of population recovery will most likely be a function of local harvest levels, the productivity of potential source populations, and the degree of landscape connectivity among demes. Under these conditions the metapopulation perspective holds promise for broad-scale management of this species.

          • avatar Ryan says:

            JB,

            “Kenya’s wildlife does very well with near total protection in National Parks, so we could use the same logic to conclude that all carnivores should be totally protected.”

            To make this a reality Africa would have to become a national park.

            As for your cougar citation,

            It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that taking up to ~50% of the population on a yearly basis will cause population decline. This level of harvest is not typical across the western states. To my knowledge Utah was prepping for a sheep reintroduction in the stansbury mountains around that time which is why the harves was so high. Most Cougar tags in Utah are draw to my knowledge.

  72. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    More on the current Jackson hole wildlife management hmmmmm…..desaster?
    Group: Set cougar free
    http://www.jhnewsandguide.com/article.php?art_id=8183
    + quote from the article: The situation is unfortunate “because residents in Cache Creek and East Jackson have been known for years to feed deer,” Cougar Fund officials said in a statement. “This unnatural concentration of deer most likely lured the cats to the residential area.”+
    Ok, problem identified! Is somebody going for a solution before the next cat comes along, now the habitat is vacant again?

    • avatar Salle says:

      But solutions take effort, something the very wealthy (which is true of most residents of the Jackson area) are loathe to consider, if they can’t just pay for a solution because it warrants their attention beyond a pay-off… focused on their actions, in part, requiring them to change their attitudes and actions is asking too much I guess. (This is true of most people who think that wildlife is there for them to control and deference is to be given to the humans in all conflicts due to their claim to self-appointed superiority of rationale.)

  73. avatar Paul says:

    Article about more elk to be introduced in Wisconsin:

    http://www.jsonline.com/sports/outdoors/program-aims-to-reintroduce-elk-to-other-areas-to-help-herd-grow-7l3smov-137828748.html

    Of course it turns into a “blame the wolves” fest to explain the need to introduce more elk. From the comments (obviously this guy is not just anti-wolf but anti spell-check as well):

    “The people of Wisconsin will never establish viable elk populations as long as we are playing “hide and seek’ with the wolf packs. Wolves are indiscriminate killers and should be totally eradicated from the State. Wolves kill livestock, game animals, pets, and if given the opportunity they will kill children. The people of Wisconsin will need to take it upon themselves to get rid of these dangerous preditors. There was a good reason as to why the settlers of this state got rid of the wolves in the first place. We will need to do the same.”

    This clown got all of the talking points down. Bruce Hemming also makes an appearance in the comments spewing his usual garbage. What will it take to get these nuts go away? Idiots with guns and computers. What can be more dangerous?

    • avatar Salle says:

      “Idiots with guns and computers. What can be more dangerous?”

      Ummm… All of the above only with a bigger microphone and too much cash? (And maybe a reality TeeVee show? and a dte w/FuxNews?)

  74. avatar Salle says:

    State biologist dreads Hollywood portrayal of wolves
    Attacks on humans, implied in movie’s trailers, extremely rare

    http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2012/jan/27/state-biologist-dreads-hollywood-portrayal-of/

    I particularly like the side bar that has info on human/wolf (attack) conflicts.

  75. avatar aves says:

    Locals upset with woodland caribou plans:

    http://www.kivitv.com/news/local/138064748.html

  76. avatar Nancy says:

    “If it isn’t the locals, it’s the government. Either way, seems all that’s needed is one group to oppose their protection to see that nothing is done to protect them from us. The idea being; if we ignore them, they’ll go away, problem solved – for some temporarily”

    In a nutshell (In a few words; concisely) Salle. Thanks.

  77. avatar Paul says:

    Wisconsin sure isn’t wasting any time planning a wolf killing season. Just a few hours after the official delisting the anti-wolf parties in the legislature are already introducing legislation.

    http://www.jsonline.com/blogs/sports/138232274.html?page=1

    From the article:

    According to the initial draft, the bill would establish a wolf hunting and trapping season from “October 15th to the end of February the following year.” The bill would also divide the state into four wolf managment zones. Hunters could use bows, crossbows or firearms. Bait, dogs and electronic calls would be legal, too.”

    Dogs? Four and a half month season on a population under 800? I guess they are trying to be the Idaho of the Great Lakes.

    • avatar Savebears says:

      Paul,

      I find it amazing, that despite all of the supposed support for wolves in this county, that every single state that has or will delist them has done a rush to hunt situation.

      I am not agreeing or disagreeing, but it seems that perhaps, things are quite a bit differently that what wolf advocates would have people believe.

      Wolf advocates seem to say that support for the wolves outweighs the anti feelings, but without stronger action on the advocates part, the anti wolf side is winning.

      • avatar Immer Treue says:

        Probably a case of much better organization by the anti’s and the borderline anti’s. Historical anti-wolf fairy tales have not helped, nor does the state of the economy where folks have more important concerns than wolves.

        That said, this is where outfits like Defenders of Wildlife dropped the ball. Instead of forever trying to maintain ESL for wolves, perhaps they should have worked with states toward sound management principles. I suspect we will continue to see continued reaction and counter-reaction for some time.

      • avatar Paul says:

        As much as it sickens me I accept that there will be wolf hunting in the Great Lakes states. The problem I have is the methods that they are proposing. Why is hounding and baiting being proposed? This is the kind of extremist crap that that infuriates wolf advocates.

        Other than lawsuits how can wolf advocates fight back? Most state wildlife agencies are controlled by hunter/trapper/rancher interests and they make little to no effort to listen to anyone else not affiliated with those groups. Of course these organizations are going to push for as much wolf killing as possible. We know who their constituencies are, and they sure as hell aren’t tree huggers like myself.

        I think that these states rush into killing knowing that they will eventually be forced to stop by the courts, public opinion, or by legislation. They want to kill as many as they can now to appease their benefactors before they are forced to stop. What I have noticed that many people who are normally pro-wolf have no idea what is being allowed to happen because the national media has virtually ignored the Congressional actions and extreme state plans. I also think that the focus on the economy and other political issues have taken priority over environmental concerns in many peoples minds.

        • avatar Immer Treue says:

          Nothing sporting about baiting. As for hounding, the cretins that resort to that better be able to keep up with their dogs or they won’t have them very long. Either that or armor plate them and the dogs won’t be able to keep up with the wolves.

          +++Other than lawsuits how can wolf advocates fight back? Most state wildlife agencies are controlled by hunter/trapper/rancher interests and they make little to no effort to listen to anyone else not affiliated with those groups. Of course these organizations are going to push for as much wolf killing as possible. We know who their constituencies are, and they sure as hell aren’t tree huggers like myself.+++

          Paul, you’ve hit the nail on the head here, and this is why I said outfits like Defenders dropped the ball. Negotiating a seat at the table for wolf management rather than perpetual ESL would have been the better path to follow.

          • avatar Paul says:

            Immer Treue,

            I still don’t think that wildlife advocates will ever get a seat at the table, no matter what the circumstances. Look at the uproar that occurred when IDFG announced the conference this fall. Does anyone really think that hunters and trappers want to give up the monopoly that they have regarding wildlife issues? The fox controls the hen house and they damn well won’t give up any power without a fight.

            As for Defenders, I think they fought with the only weapon available to them, the ESA. I just cannot see many wildlife agencies willing to honestly work with groups like them because they fear backlash from the hunting community. I remember the uproar a couple of years ago when the HSUS partnered with the WI DNR on a campaign for something as simple as advising people not to pick up young animals that they mistakenly think are orphaned. Many in the hunting community and groups like the NRA saw this partnership as an attack on “hunters rights,” and other insane theories.

            http://www.jsonline.com/sports/outdoors/93646084.html

            How can pro-wildlife groups work with people like this in good faith? Even when doing something that benefits both side many pro-hunting types fight tooth and nail against it. And they wonder why pro-wildlife people do not trust much or the hunter/trapper community?

          • avatar ma'iingan says:

            “Negotiating a seat at the table for wolf management rather than perpetual ESL would have been the better path to follow.”

            Defenders of Wildlife has a seat on the Wisconsin Wolf Stakeholders’ Committee, advisory to WDNR.

        • avatar Savebears says:

          Paul,

          The only thing I can say as a former Military commander, the Pro Wolf groups are not following the correct path and they have dropped the ball, they set themselves up for failure.

          They don’t have the strategist to fight this kind of war and they are loosing. It kind of reminds me of my studies on the Viet Nam War, we were destine for failure from day one, the warriors won, the leaders lost.

          The majority of Americans do not care about balance or wolves, that is a fact of life..

          I don’t see a wipe out coming, but I do see a token population of this species, you guys are trying to overcome history and doing it the wrong way.

          • avatar Paul says:

            I agree with you that most Americans don’t trouble themselves about issues like these. They are too busy with their stupid a$$ “reality” TV crap and posting about every time they take a dump on Facebook. That obliviousness is exactly what is going to be the downfall of the country, and we are seeing it right before our eyes. Ignorance sure must be bliss!

          • avatar Savebears says:

            The key is Paul, I as well as you are not ignorant…

        • avatar Savebears says:

          Again, that is the problem, you guys focus on the method, you don’t focus on the issue, what the hell does it matter how they are killed? They will be dead no matter what, if the states were to implement what you call fair chase, would that be anymore palatable?

          Both actions are going to end up with the same result, dead wolves, why does it matter how they are killed?

          • avatar Paul says:

            Because I am an animal welfare advocate and I do not want to see anything needlessly suffer, especially for amusement. To me, and many others, it matters quite a bit how they are killed. I obviously do not like hunting, but I would certainly rather see something killed quickly with little to no pain than being forced to suffer in a trap for 72 hours plus, or chased down and ripped to shreds by a pack of dogs. So yes fair chase would make a huge difference in how I view this issue.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Paul,

            You are telling a lie, if every single animal that is killed was done in the manner you want, you would still bitch, you don’t want to see animals killed. Lets get to the heart of the matter.

            Dead is dead, plain and simple, I lost a few men under my command when in the service, some were shot, some where tortured, some were beheaded, but guess what, they are ALL dead, same result, different methods! None of those deaths are acceptable to me, I don’t give a shit which way it happened, they are still dead.

            I can honestly tell you, you have no idea of what suffering is. This is based on your comments.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Fair chase, what a joke, there is no fair chase when your goal is to kill, wolves don’t have “fair” chase, they have a goal to survive, they pack up and rip the anus out of their prey, give me a break, watching a pack of wolves kill is a very traumatic situation, I begrudge them not, but they are not clean killers, efficient yes, clean no! They kill anyway they can.

            I don’t hold that against them, but come on, lets jump into reality, they will kill anyway they can, just as any other predator will.

            You guys really live in fantasy land, don’t you!

          • avatar Paul says:

            Savebears,

            So now you are accusing me of lying? I don’t like suffering in any form so you damn right I will continue to bitch as long as suffering still happens. And when it is done for recreation that makes it even worse. And how the hell do you know what I have experienced in my life? I also served in the military. Army Reserve for 8 years. I was fortunate enough not to have been activated and deployed because I served from 91-99. Does that make me less of a person?

            You damn right I live in a “fantasy land.” I have a fantasy that humanity would stop using wildlife as pawns in their sick little blood sport games. Is it so wrong to not want suffering? If you kill it you eat it, no more of this trophy crap. That is the fantasy I have.

            I worked as a dispatcher for the past 14 years, and I dealt with suffering just about each and everyday. You haven’t lived until you hear someone blow their brains out while you are on the phone with them, or listen to someone suffocate to death when you have no idea where they are so you can get help to them. How about listening to an infant choke to death and you can’t do a damn thing to stop it. I guess that doesn’t count as suffering. How about all of the injured or orphaned wildlife that I deal with each year? I guess those animals that have limbs hanging off because of an irresponsible trapper are not suffering.

            You make the mistake of equating the manner in which wolves kill to the manner in which humans kill. We are supposed to be the “superior” species. We have the tools to make clean and efficient kills. You damn right the manner in which something dies matters. That is why most states went from electrocution to lethal injection. That is why hanging is no longer a method of execution in this country. How would you want to go?

            I enjoy a spirited debate, but I do not make personal insinuations towards you or any one else on this blog. I would appreciate the same in return. Let’s stick to the issues please. I may disagree with your position, but please do not make it personal.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Oh, excuse me, reservist, sorry didn’t mean to step on your toes, I won’t print my experience again, as many who have not served have no understanding of what I talk about.

            As far as personal, I will continue to be personal as this is a personal issue, if you can handle the heat in the frying pan, then get out.

            Infants have nothing to do with this conversation.

            By the way, hanging is still an option in at least one state as is firing squads.

            As far as how I go, I don’t give a shit, I have met the devil in the face, when I was shot in Iraq, and know for a fact it does not matter, death is death, it is all painful, so get off your highhorse and jump back into reality.

            You were fortunate to not be deployed, all I can say is WOW, that is a qualification.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            I will make it personal, as long as I can, you do, why can’t I? You animal activist always make it personal, if you didn’t you would not have so darn many objections, it is a personal issue!

            Please let us argue or debate on a level playing ground!

          • avatar Paul says:

            That’s enough. Spew your venom to others. Who made you the one who determines what is a valid argument or not on this blog? Your contribution to society is no more or less than mine or anyone else on this blog. I did nothing to deserve this type of response from you. It is one thing to voice opinions, it is quite another to launch personal attacks. By you grouping me in with all other animal advocates you are doing the exact same thing that you accuse others of. I made the mistake of grouping all hunters together in the past. I realized that was wrong, and stopped it. I guess I can’t take the heat, because I have no desire to be personally insulted by you or anyone else.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Paul,

            I apologize, I was out of line, your service was just as important as mine, again I apologize, I was out of line.

          • avatar Paul says:

            Fair enough. This is an emotional topic on both sides.

          • avatar william huard says:

            Gee whizz SaveBears-
            Too bad I was working and missed your latest tantrum. I found your whole series of comments interesting. Taking a wild animal and making a moral issue as to how he kills to survive….Youare a biologist? Telling the rest of us fair chase is a joke? And you are a moderate in these discussions? I have known for a longtime that some of you on this blog can barely contain your excitement during this wolf slaughter. One last thing- we hear weekly from you how you have served in the military- as you condescend others less worthy of the same praise….my older brother was in Vietnam during the TET offensive and is a survivor of Hamburger Hill. I don’t think he has EVER mentioned fighting in that war once…..Why is that do you think?

          • avatar Savebears says:

            I was waiting with baited breath for your comment William, I knew you could not resist.

    • avatar WM says:

      And another article on WI rushing to control its excess and problem wolves, carried in a MN newspaper.

      http://www.duluthnewstribune.com/event/article/id/221120/

  78. avatar somsai says:

    Coyote bites 9yr old girl in MA
    http://www.necn.com/01/18/12/Coyote-attacks-nine-year-old-Mass-girl/landing_newengland.html?blockID=633952&feedID=4206

    There was a long discussion on here recently about coy dogs in MA.

  79. avatar Salle says:

    There isn’t a link to it yet but NPR has an article on the air this morning that features a trip into YNP with Nathan Varley… It’s short and doesn’t cover much so I’m hoping the online version goes further in depth or that this is the beginning of a several part story. I’ll post the link when it becomes available.

    • avatar Salle says:

      A wolf-watching trip into YNP.

    • avatar WM says:

      Salle,

      Speaking of NPR did you happen to catch the short interview with John Vucetich at Isle Royale a couple days ago. The female population is down to just two there, now, with the remaining 20 something being males.

      I was surprised there was no discussion of what that foretells for the continued population of the island. The interviewer (sorry I forgot her name) was more interested in the curious wolf track patterns made in the snow by coupling wolves.

      I gather Vucetich (and Rolf Peterson) is not ready to discuss letting nature take its course or infusing the population with new genetics, though this was a great opportunity to do so.

      • avatar Salle says:

        WM,

        I did not. I’ll see if I can still listen to it on the web… well looky-here…

        That link is:

        http://www.npr.org/2012/01/26/145923400/vucetich-discusses-long-running-predator-prey-study

        So here’s the piece I heard this morning:

        javascript:NPR.Player.openPlayer(146024075,%20146024056,%20null,%20NPR.Player.Action.PLAY_NOW,%20NPR.Player.Type.STORY,%20’0′)

      • avatar Jerry Black says:

        WM…..”I gather Vucetich (and Rolf Peterson) is not ready to discuss letting nature take its course or infusing the population with new genetics, though this was a great opportunity to do so.”
        I attended the lecture at the U.of Montana two months ago where Vucetich and Nelson gave presentations. Seems there’s alot at stake and I got the impression that they won’t abandon the project anytime soon.

      • avatar JB says:

        “I gather Vucetich (and Rolf Peterson) is not ready to discuss letting nature take its course or infusing the population with new genetics, though this was a great opportunity to do so.”

        WM: They have been discussing this for a few years now. The link that follows will take you to a publication that analyzed ethical arguments used in a debate concerning the genetic rescue of Isle Royale wolves.

        http://media.mlive.com/environment_impact/other/Ethicalbasisforconservationpolicy-1.pdf

        • avatar WM says:

          JB,

          Thanks for posting the link. I have seen several articles on this controversial topic. Vucetich focused in the interview on the future of the Isle Royale population hinging on the productivity of the two remaining females (and the paucity of prey base of moose not doing very well because of the growing tick problem in a globally warmed environment).

          What was not mentioned, to my surprise, were the genetic issues that have plagued this isolated population, and which may result in their ultimate demise. It is possible he addressed the genetic issue, but it might have been edited out. The interviewer was more interested in evidence of mating, as determined by the funny track patterns viewed from the air.

  80. avatar CodyCoyote says:

    It’s not just wolves that draw the fire of haters with guns. Someone(s) is shooting Sea Lions in Seattle and Tacoma . Eight in recent days.

    http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/01/27/10254177-8-sea-lions-found-shot-to-death-near-seattle

    But it’s somewhat complicated. Even though protected by the Marine Mammal Act ( which is administered by the US Dept. of Commerce, not USFWS in Interior), the agency itself has killed ” problem” Sea Lions in recent years when they couldn’t otherwise haze them away from gorging on Salmon runs. Residents report seeing more Sea Lions recently than ever before.

    No excuse. it’s Bad Human Behavior regardless. Just substitute Wolves for Sea Lions, and Cattle for Salmon, and it’s Groundhog Day , with guns.

    • avatar WM says:

      Cody,

      The Nisqually tribe operates salmon hatcheries on that river. There is the Nisqually Wildlife Refuge at the mouth, near where it appears these sea lions were shot. Not to make too much of an inductive leap here, but it is not uncommon for tribal members to thump sea lions for eating what they believe are their salmon (Quilliyute’s for example on the Olympic coast), or ticked off commercial or sport salmon fishermen. If you have ever seen sea lions collected at the Ballard Locks (the water body that connects Puget Sound to Lake Union, then Lake Washington, waiting for salmon to congregate before going up the fish ladder you would understand the serious nature of the sea lion issue from their respective viewpoints. Talk about fishing for salmon in a barrel – this is sea lion Nirvana.

      By the way, a good book about the Nisqually and the salmon wars issues is “Messages From Frank’s Landing” by Charles Wilkinson (U of Colorado Law professor).

  81. avatar Doryfun says:

    Dead is dead. Does it matter how death arrives? If we could ask two dead people, one dying by massive heart attack, and the other by suffering long tortuous cancer, which way is better, what is the likelihood cancer would be the answer from either one?

    Though our country has a hard time following it, do we not subscribe to the Geneva Convention, which aims at eliminating torture?

    Afflictions for torture have been performed throughout history in the name of religion for a long time. A benevolent God killed his own son for man. How benevolent is that? All kinds of dominionist attitudes perpetuate supremacy oriented cultures. There were 620000 people killed during the civil war, which was mostly fought over slavery. Any time people and/or animals are treated on such a sliding scale, and with divine cruelty, moral bankruptcy is the end result.

    A worldview of man connected to nature, and not above it, might be helpful in giving more rights to animals. At least in how we go about killing them. While it seems to be a bit paradoxical to believe in killing humanely, it still seems better to eliminate suffering and torture best we can.

    Just yesterday, my otherwise wonderful day on the mountain-side chasing chukars with my two dogs (I eat meat, therefore I hunt), was suddenly disrupted with a gut-wrenching evisceration. I had just found some wolf tracks frozen in the snow and was joyously following them, hoping I might get a glimpse of it. Instead I ran into man-made tracks and shortly thereafter, a cable snare. Luckily it had no animal in it, but it reminded me of how much I do hate trapping. I couldn’t get pictures of such a trapped animal struggling (for who knows how long) out of my mind, as I continued on.

    To me, torture does matter, and I just don’t see how it can ever be justified. Human or animal, I just do not believe in cruelty to either one. How is it possible to humanely trap? Suffering eight hours instead of two days may be better, but torture is torture, like dead is dead.

    If the professional wildlife scientist assessments are valid for wolf management to prevent ES listings, and still calls for some removal, is aerial gunning a good option? As much as I disdain aerial gunning of wolves, it does seem much preferable to trapping, if hunting is not effective. It may not be fair chase, nor is it claimed to be, but at least it is more surgical and less torturous. There will always be poor shots, or bad situations that result, something any hunter must accept before taking up a hunt, and thus minimized as much as possible. But, I fail to see how trapping can ever be much more than a bad situation each time it occurs. Any trappers out there whom can enlighten me?

    • avatar Salle says:

      That sort of thing (finding a set trap) creeps me out as much as bullets whizzing by in a silence-shattering moment in an other-wise quiet woods. And far worse to encounter an animal in a trap… an experience that haunts many moments of many days and nights for years thereafter. It leaves the mind and heart damaged, wounded with the burden of knowledge of what horrid things mankind is capable of and willing to do for gain… similar to witnessing senseless killing of anything, human or not.

    • avatar Rancher Bob says:

      Doryfun
      Responding to your question will of course upset the masses, but I will anyway. Yes trapping can be ugly but also effective. Snares like you saw, in most states are required to have a break away for larger animals, deer ect. If you’ve ever been choked out wrestling you would see a snare first stops the blood flow to the brain and you pass out in seconds. Short quick mostly painless, you have to answer that one.
      Most experienced trappers use leg hold traps with off set jaws or a gap if you will, as to not break bones, then that trap will have at least two swivels to avoid twisting of the chain.
      Another anger point is the check time, trappers I have talked with check at least every 48 hours if not once a day the state reg’s are there for bad weather events. So most animals were caught in the last 8 hours.
      With out trapping most of the wolves in the RMS would have stayed in Canada and most of the information we have on wolves because of collars would never been learned, but mostly they all lived to see another day after being trapped. Hope that was of some help.

  82. avatar Salle says:

    Some satire from The Onion:

    Scientists: ‘Look, One-Third Of The Human Race Has To Die For Civilization To Be Sustainable, So How Do We Want To Do This?’

    http://www.theonion.com/articles/scientists-look-onethird-of-the-human-race-has-to,27166/

    Funny and not. But certainly thought provoking.

  83. avatar Doryfun says:

    Rancher Bob,

    Thanks for giving me another perspective. I used to wrestle in high school, but never been choked out. This assumes the neck is always secured in suc a fashion that death comes quickly,I am surmizing from your answer, but I wonder how often snare put animals to death quickly as you mention??

    I am not, and never have been a trapper, so I don’t know all the specifics, and appreciate learning other perspectives.

    But, doesnt’t the fact that traps have timing requirements do so because the idea is to reduce the amount of time suffering? If the animal s killed immediately, that would not be necessary.

    Also, isn’t it true that amany animals bite off their own legs to get out when caught in a jaw trap? That alone says a lot to me about what an animal might suffer.

    I’m not sure I understand your part about wolves remaining in Canada had it not been for trapping?

    I’m not up on specifics of methods used for trapping wolves to collar, such as leg traps, time in trap before the find, darting, etc. but you have a point there.

    Appreciate your feedback, all the same, as we all have to find our own comfort level for what we choose to accept or not. More information is better than less, as we try to fine tune our own tracks on the planet.

    • avatar Salle says:

      DoryFun,

      I think he’s referring to the trapping of several (if not all) of the reintroduced wolves (I believe some were darted from the air but trapping played a role in the process) both prior to, during and after reintroduction.

      (I invite Carter to speak up here on this next part, he knows more than most about this!) ;)

      But a thing about the traps used over time in this whole reintroduced wolves process… I know that the actuaries of the wolf-handling teams weren’t comfortable with the traps they started out with. I remember them working out the details of the traps that are now used in the collaring/monitoring of wolves, for instance. Not sure what the WS guys are using these days but I know the researchers have developed less harmful, if you will, devices. All the same, I know of at least one wolf in the Yellowstone region that has/had (?) an injured paw due to an encounter with a trap – not sure whose or the details but injuries do occur regardless of how refined the device, thus, suffering occurs as well, especially if the injury results in permanent damage that impairs the animal’s ability to hunt and travel.

      I have an inkling that the animals’ suffering point isn’t high on the list of concerns with regard to trapping regs for the general public.

      • avatar IDhiker says:

        “I have an inkling that the animals’ suffering point isn’t high on the list of concerns with regard to trapping regs for the general public.”

        Obviously not in Montana, since we have no check time here at all.

        In the several FWP trapping meetings I have attended, the first thing that came up concerning the idea of a check time was the fact that it was inconvenient to the trapper. Especially since, as one trapper stated, his trapline was two-hundred miles long.

        • avatar william huard says:

          It is obvious “priorities” are all screwed up. How can trapper convenience outweigh how it looks to the public when animals are stuck in traps suffering for several days…..It doesn’t make any sense….. I can say- I called Montana Fish and Game several years ago and the person that I talked to was adamant that there is a 24 hour trap check policy in Montana…..Unbelievable. You wonder why people hate trappers….

        • avatar Nancy says:

          “Especially since, as one trapper stated, his trapline was two-hundred miles long”

          Guessing those miles would add up pretty quick, with little effort or actual travel time, if you’re laying traplines down on both sides of the creek, river or the little waterways (springs) connected to them.

      • avatar Doryfun says:

        Salle,

        You are probably right about Rancher Bob referring to traps used to get the wolves to be released in the US, (it flew over my thinking, being absorbed by the other kind of trapping) but, didn’t Carter say in his book that wolves were already coming into MT, before any reintrodcutions were about to happen?

        Also, he mentioned that he had to modify a Newhouse trap with jaws, as they prevented loss of circulation, and were easier on the wolf than toothless traps, though it might not feel good to them (an understatement, my guess).

        The other thing we bird hunters now have to worry about in our area, is poison. I have seen warning signs, but don’t know if they have set out M-44 (coyote getters) or 1080??Both are level 1 (highest) in toxicity, and they kill anything that takes the bait. These things aren’t much higher in humaneness than trapping either, in my estimation.

        It seems the noose continues to get tighter around our own kind, with respect to shrinking down the places where we can go to engage the landscape safely from our own devices.

        It wouldn’t hurt my feelings if Wildlife Services was put on the endangered species list, without any protections to prevent extinction.

        • avatar Nancy says:

          “but, didn’t Carter say in his book that wolves were already coming into MT, before any reintrodcutions were about to happen?”

          Yes Doryfun, I seem to recall Carter mentioning that in his book
          BUT… given how well the population of wolves, under much better protections since the early 90’s, my guess would be there was a lot of “gotta be wolves” when it came to depredations (and a hell of a lot SS going on) rather than any kind of thoughts regarding the actual benefits of their return to the landscape.

          • avatar Salle says:

            Yup, Carter did mention that in the book and so did others, They weren’t going far and were not good candidates for repopulating the lower portions of the Rockies, at least not within a few decades on their own.

            “Also, he mentioned that he had to modify a Newhouse trap with jaws, as they prevented loss of circulation, and were easier on the wolf than toothless traps, though it might not feel good to them (an understatement, my guess).”

            Yes, he said he modified traps when he had to start keeping the wolves alive. He said he had to change his way of thinking on that part, but he accomplished that task as well. I think it was that these traps were causing too much damage to the animals’ paws and/or lower legs. (Paws are delicate… some heavy metal object slamming down on one and subsequent thrashing to get free is really bad on anyone’s foot. Maybe like dropping a full No.10 can on your foot and then not be able to get it off.) If I recall correctly, there was a more reasonable (relatively) foot-hold trap developed that was less damaging and involved a much lighter weight restraint mechanism – it looked more like a strap, of course I only saw the pictures, I know very little about trapping devices and it was many years ago now.

    • avatar Rancher Bob says:

      Doryfun
      One further item on animals chewing off their foot or leg, as I understand it, this occurs on traps with no off set, the foot looses blood flow becoming numb even frozen in cold conditions that’s when it maybe chewed off. It’s not a last ditch effort to save themselves just that their unable to feel the foot.
      WS and Montana F&G have a 24 hour trap check requirement when they are trapping.
      And to address the pet issue it seems every pet reported trapped in Montana this year was caught in a trap illegally placed, trapping needs a school for beginners and more enforcement of the ones breaking the rules.

      • avatar Doryfun says:

        Rancher Bob,

        What is an offset? Interesting idea about not feeling a leg while gnawing it off, if that is the case?? All the same, isn’t it still a panic stricken endeavor?

        Regarding illegal traps, schools for trappers, enforcement and such… how about a school for animals to recognize the difference between good trappers and bad trappers? Or good poisons and bad poisons? Differentiation for them, probably doesn’t mean much in the final analysis.

  84. avatar Leslie says:

    More about the California wolf:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/28/us/wildlife-activists-follow-lone-wolfs-trek-into-california.html?_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha23

    I like the California comments about clearing out areas of humans and make a wolf sanctuary. It will be interesting to see how the state F&G handles all this.

    Here is the new CA website re: wolves
    http://www.dfg.ca.gov/wildlife/nongame/wolf/

  85. avatar Carter Niemeyer says:

    I finally caught up with this thread and my comments are probably a little late. The wolves in Canada were caught in neck snares and released prior to the reintroduction of wolves into Idaho and YNP. As a result of the collaring using neck snares, we used helicopter darting to catch the wolves that were reintroduced – no foot-hold traps were used in any of the reintroduction process. The neck snares were rough on the wolves because they got the cable in their mouths that cut their lips. Others were snared around the body causing cuts and abrasions. Eventually we used foot-hold traps to catch and relocate wolves in Montana when they got in trouble and also for radio collaring. I spent a lot of time working through the “right trap” for the job. The trap we settled on was a McBride wolf size trap with a 6 1/2″ trap jaw diameter with offset jaws and modified teeth that we ground off to dull burrs, so they wouldn’t do much foot damage. The burrs kept the foot from sliding in the trap and causing deep cuts (that traps with no offset can cause). Canines, whether fox, coyote or wolves do not normally chew on their foot or leg in a trap. It would be exceptional. Canines usually “wring off” their feet because they are left in a trap too long (most western states have a 72 hour trap check period) OR the trap is too large for the species caught in it. The single biggest problem with using foot-hold traps is that they need to be checked every 24 hours minimum or you will see all kinds of foot injuries, dehydration, sprains and stress. I have trapped (using foot-hold traps) nearly 200 wolves and not a single one has died from a trap injury to the best of my knowledge (remember they were equipped with radio collars before release). I have been a stickler about checking my wolf traps at the crack of dawn every day (most wolves are probably in a wolf trap for no longer than 4-6 hours, with exceptions of course. I do not use neck snares – period. Finally, foot-hold traps for wolves are routinely used for research and relocation ONLY during periods when temperatures stay above freezing to avoid frostbite injury to wolves. When the night time temperatures approach freezing, I quit, and so should other researchers. Wildlife Services and fur trappers trap in any kind of weather conditions when wolves are going to be killed – as is the situation with a wolf trapping and snaring season in Idaho. In fact, the wolf trapping season in Idaho opened on November 15, which is well into normal cold weather and freezing mountain temperatures. Agency wolf research trappers quit about mid-September. As for a wolf with a crippled/injured/missing foot – that could very easily be the result of a wolf that was caught in a coyote trap, broke the chain, escaped with the trap on its foot or toes, the foot or toes froze or mummified, and eventually the trap came off with the paw/toes in it. I have seen hundreds of “peg leg” coyotes in my day and most of them got that way from being in traps for several days and twisting off their dead foot and surviving. Traps in the wrong hands ARE inhumane as hell. Research collaring for wolves during the winter and cold weather period was accomplished using helicopter darting but no foot-hold traps are used. Capture methods are a seasonal thing but certainly can be abused.

    • avatar Salle says:

      Thank you for clarifying that, Carter. I knew I didn’t have the best set of details to articulate what you said above, though that’s what I was thinking about.

      S.

  86. avatar Salle says:

    I know this article isn’t about wildlife but it does give a fair picture of what the ID legislature is all about and have been all along. It’s no wonder that they have such egregious, draconian wildlife management policies given that this is how they do business in general. It’s just as sickening to realize as it is to watch. The over-the-top level of self-appointed exceptionalism is discouraging and horrifying to put it mildly.

    This article is a good representation of what one will find when attending a hearing on any special concern of the gentry (which is quite troubling to those of us who happen to have an intimate acquaintance with the democratic process and our Constitutional Rights).

    http://my.firedoglake.com/sagesse/2012/01/28/occupy-boise-is-idaho-so-afraid-of-the-world-that-we-can%E2%80%99t-deal-with-it/

  87. avatar Doryfun says:

    Carter,

    Thank you very much for that detailed account of trapping. I appreciate your insights and integrity, and all you have done to promote more wildlife issue enlightenment.

    A lot of what you say reinforces my ideas about trapping. I still have problems accepting trapping in general methodology for wildlife services use and a trappers season in general.

    What is your take on poisons? For some reason I thought 1080 was banned awhile back, but apparently it is still legal? Doesn’t it have secondary affects, in addition to non-target specifics?

  88. avatar Carter Niemeyer says:

    Doryfun

    1080 is only legal as a predacide when contained in a 1080 collar – a collar that has exterior bladders containing 1080 toxicant that will be punctured by canine teeth when attacking the neck of a domestic sheep or goat wearing it. Often the target sheep is killed by the canine at the same time the canine kills itself. 1080 in any other form is a thing of the past in the US. Other countries use lots of it yet. I don’t like toxicants – never did. When I got out of college and went to work as a government trapper/hunter, it was right after most predator toxicants were banned in 1972. I was lucky and didn’t have to use them like my predecessors. The only two toxicants registered for canine predators (fox, coyotes and feral dogs) are M-44s (sodium cyanide) and the 1080 collars. Neither are registered to use to kill wolves – yet. Wildlife Services trappers never liked messing with 1080 collars because they require certified training to use, they have to be stored in a locked cabinet and carefully dispensed. After the collars are placed on a target sheep, the trapper is responsible for what happens to the collar and the sheep. When that sheep disappears, the trapper better damn well find out what happened to it and if the collar disappears, the trapper might be in deep doodoo. I think the collar is a labor intensive tool to use although can be selective. Most trappers would rather try any other lethal tool than to get tangled up in the bookkeeping and accountability issues. The 1080 collar application would really limit any secondary poisoning affects. When 1080 was used as a rodenticide, you could have problems with dead rodents being eaten by scavengers and of course, 1080 injected into horse meat to kill coyotes led to problems based on the concentration that was injected into the meat. If done correctly, 1080 was pretty selective toward canines only but if abused by the user, it could kill non-target birds and mammals. Your biggest concern now days in the Western US would be a poorly placed M-44 (which must be signed to warn the public both at gateways and within feet of the M-44 unit). M-44s have 27 use restrictions on how and where they can be placed that must be followed. If you and your bird dogs hunt a private ranch especially, you should always inquire whether Wildlife Services are using M-44s on their property. The real danger is climbing over a fence and not going through a signed gate and not realizing M-44s are in the field. A dog will find the scented unit before you can do much to stop it – too late.

  89. avatar Carter Niemeyer says:

    I forgot to mention that a lot of illegal toxicants are still sitting around from the olden days and every once in awhile, somebody uses some 1080 or strychnine that was put on a shelf for “just in case”. This is biggest threat to pets, livestock and predators (these toxicants will sure kill fox, coyotes, wolves, eagles and a host of other non-targets). People who put it out that way are total morons and have no idea how dangerous this stuff can be and almost always kill the wrong species and fail to kill what they they planned on killing. You will remember back a few years ago when illegal poisoning was directed at wolves (this was misuse of insecticide/pesticide) by putting out meat baits. All these people accomplished was killing several beloved pets and hurting innocent people. I always hope that ignorant behavior by self-appointed predator haters will go away but it doesn’t. In fact, when the illegal poisoning of pets happened, one well known anti-wolf person in Idaho said that because of the illegal wolf reintroduction, people had to do what they had to do (referring to the illegal poisons) and that the federal government was responsible for the collateral damage cause to pet owners not the poisoners. Go figure…….

    • avatar CodyCoyote says:

      Just saying by way of reminder … that famous female Wolf 341F who went on the 1500 mile odyssey that began south of Livingston MT and traversed five states before she was found dead in NW Colorado was killed by illegal 1080 poison.

  90. avatar Carter Niemeyer says:

    CodyCoyote

    Excellent point. And one more example of why natural immigration and colonization by wolves from Canada to the US would not have happened in our lifetimes because wolves were periodically showing up FROM Canada for five decades after they were extirpated from Western US and never became viable. There are examples of illegal wolf killing with poison near the Canadian border in the early and mid-1980s. The illegal killing of predators, like wolves, has been and continues to be happening. The reintroduction simply lifted wolves over that gauntlet and concentrated them in wild places where they could mate, breed and disperse and that was all it took. For better or worse, wolves are back on the landscape because reintroduction saved them from the daily assault by poachers. The wolf that traveled to Colorado is a prime indicator that most dispersing wolves cannot survive long enough to find a territory, mate and produce pups. I know that federal agents tried like hell to pinpoint the illegal poison in Colorado but were unable to obtain the evidence needed to finger someone. I’m waiting to see what happens to the wolf in California. They should change his name to “Miracle” if he simply survives, let alone finds a mate or spends a quiet summer in California.

    • avatar Savebears says:

      Carter, Despite the illegal kills going on, I know there is a pretty robust population of wolves in NW Montana that are natural occurring from migrations from Canada, I live in an area that has a very good population of wolves and have a good sized pack living very close to me.

      I also know of two other packs in the area, I have lived in this particular area for over 15 years now and we have always had wolves around.

  91. avatar Carter Niemeyer says:

    Save Bears

    No dispute about that. They got started by around 1985 and had a small foothold then. No doubt others were successful after that but the reintroduction came along and would destroy any good way of tracking natural dispersal. Gradually the wolves began to mix – immigrants and reintroduced. I’m just suggesting that wolves much south of the Canadian border weren’t faring well. Around 1991 a pair of black wolves were videoed in Bear Valley in Idaho and by the time I was sent the video tape to say “yup, those are real wolves”, one was found dying from illegal poisoning and the other one disappeared and was never heard of again. Just sayin’…….

    • avatar Immer Treue says:

      Rick Bass’s The Ninemile Wolves eloquently retells the early colonizers of Montana, and the effort Mike Jimenez took to keep them out of harms way.

      There has always been a certain amount of irony in terms of the NRM states perhaps accepting wolves if they were allowed to naturally recolonize. It’s fairly evident that any and all that attempted to recolonize (the supposed remnant native populations)never became viable because of the SSS and poisoning, never had a chance. Not until the entire area was put under the federal magnifying glass with the reintroductions did the wolves have a chance.

      • avatar Savebears says:

        Immer,

        My only point was that recolonization was happening despite the illegal killings, We humans at times seem to be very impatient, the federal protections have been in place for a longer period of time than going back to 1995. The reintroductions simply jump started the process and despite what many say is actually pretty successful.

        I believe the wolves had a good chance even without the reintroductions, but at this point in time it does not matter.

        • avatar JB says:

          It’s interesting to ponder what might have happened were wolves not reintroduced? Would they have recolonized “naturally” with the full protection (and teeth) of the ESA, or would population growth have stagnated?

          There was a ~5-fold increase in the number of wolves in Montana from 1987-1994 (the year before the reintroduction). However, wolves in the NRMs increased by a factor of ~7 from 1995 to 2002 (after reintroduction). Was that enough to justify the expense? Personally, I think the livestock industry gained more by the reintroduction than any other group. I agree with Savebears that wolves would likely have continued to recover–albeit much more slowly–without the reintroductions. However, they would have done so without the experimental, non-essential designation (and the associated level of control) for wolves.

          • avatar Jon Way says:

            Even though now off the ESA, a good way to look at if natural recovery would have worked in MT, ID, and WY is to see how wolves do in now colonizing other states. CO may be a good chance. We know wolves trickle down to that area; will there be populations in 10-20 years similar to if wolves would be now getting to the Yellowstone area hadn’t they been reintroduced….

        • avatar Immer Treue says:

          SB

          +++My only point was that recolonization was happening despite the illegal killings, We humans at times seem to be very impatient, the federal protections have been in place for a longer period of time than going back to 1995. The reintroductions simply jump started the process and despite what many say is actually pretty successful.+++

          Not arguing the point here at all. Many said the wolves were on their way prior to the reintroduction. Reintroduction only accelerated the process.

          My point was there is a philosophy that ONE of the reasons the GL states seem to have accepted wolves was their natural recolonization. I agree with you that wolves had a good chance in the NRM states at recolonization, if they had been left alone. My point was if clandestine actions(despite federal protections) against natural dispersers had not occurred, there never would have been a reason for “reintroduction”.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Immer as wolves were only classified as endangered in the Lower 48, every where else they are still prolific, I don’t know that I agree they needed to be reintroduced. Wolves were endangered in the US, but they were and are not endangered else where, but as I said, now it is a moot point, they have been reintroduced and they are doing quite well.

        • avatar Nancy says:

          “We humans at times seem to be very impatient”

          I agree SB. Only have to look at today’s technology & the “I gotta have that NOW ” mentality to realize that sad fact.

          So why do you think there may of been a “rush” in the 90’s, to recolonize wolf populations if they had such a good chance, opportunities etc. to recolonize on their own?

  92. avatar Carter Niemeyer says:

    +++ “My point was if clandestine actions(despite federal protections) against natural dispersers had not occurred, there never would have been a reason for “reintroduction”.

    I have to chime in and agree with this statement. I think it sums up the thinking. I have never had a strong feeling one way or the other about reintroduction of wolves. I participated because I was part of the team in place at the time. I will always believe that wolves could have easily repopulated the West had the persecution stopped back in the 1930s but it didn’t. I got a kick out of hearing ranchers say, “I think natural recovery would have been the best way because we never had trouble with the smaller wolves that lived around here”. They got along because there weren’t any and the few that showed up got deep-sixed. Reintroduction wouldn’t have been much of a consideration if the natural immigrants were allowed to colonize. I learned and formed my opinions about wolf recovery along the way and I still gotta say that natural recovery would have been a slow, slow process and maybe never happened. The wolves that started colonizing northwest Montana down to Missoula and including the Rocky Mountain Front had an awful lot of help from “us” trying to keep them alive with relocations, compensation and one-on-one public relations trying to gain tolerance for the wolves that we had and most of the early colonizers were getting in trouble. Every time they would get a start, we relocated or killed some wolves (not to mention wolves getting poached and hit on highways) to get local ranchers to show some tolerance and the surviving wolves would start over again. The secret to natural recovery is having enough pups born, survive and be able to disperse before the pack is killed, relocated and broken up. We did an awful lot of “management” in the early years not to mention Canada was pretty heavy handed on their side of the border during that same time period.

    • avatar Nancy says:

      “I think natural recovery would have been the best way because we never had trouble with the smaller wolves that lived around here”.

      Laughed when I read that comment Carter.

      Had a ranching friend outside of Dillon, say almost the same thing a few years ago about a “little black wolf” that had been seen often. He wondered/worried about how it was gonna be able to survive with all those big, bad Canadian wolves, let loose and roaming up from Yellowstone?

  93. avatar Nancy says:

    CBS 60 Minutes tonight – “game” farms in Texas for those with big bucks and a desire to kill something non-native yet local.

  94. avatar Immer Treue says:

    Jon,

    The question about Colorado, will wolves be able to run the gauntlet known as Wyoming in order to get there?

    • avatar WM says:

      Immer, nothwithstanding the WY gauntlet, there is no overt joy from CO in knowing that wolves are coming. They have been curiously silent, for the most part. In that public silence I know of some who are cheering for WY to keep up the good work.

  95. avatar WM says:

    The Canadian Northern Gateway Pipeline issue has taken on a new twist. Not so much an issue of whether it will be built, but rather to whom the oil will be sold. While we in the US can bemoan the environmental consequences of the oil extraction and delivery system it appears it the project will be built, regardless. The only question then, is who gets the oil. Consider the US lack of interest, or reluctance to be a strategic opportunity for China to meet its insatiable need for oil. Who will be better environmental stewards, the US or China?

    The other aspect is that it has become a rallying point for the GOP. Did the President and the D’s screw this up in the end?

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/46181932/ns/world_news-americas/

    • avatar WM says:

      Sorry, (not enough coffee this morning) the comment above should begin with …. “It is not so much an issue of whether the Alberta tar sands oil will be exploited, but whether it will be the Texas Keystone XL pipline benefitting the US, or Northern Gateway benefitting China.

    • avatar Daniel Berg says:

      China will get oil, regardless of where it comes from, so the question of, “who will be better environmental stewards” is irrelevant to this issue.

      The real political question is whether people will view it as a squandered opportunity to source oil from a better partner, and whether that is more important than the environmental degredation caused by the oil sands extraction.

      The US became a net exporter of fuels last year, so in terms of raw supply, there are no issues. It’s the sources that are causing the headaches.

    • avatar Paul says:

      Why does it not surprise me that this is being proposed in Georgia? I have an idea. Why not just allow hunters to put landmines around their bait piles? More convenient for hunters right? I feel so bad that their ears might ring a little bit and that they don’t miss their “prize” because they have to put earplugs in. I thought hunting was supposed to entail some effort? Give me a break.

      • avatar Elk275 says:

        Nancy and Paul

        The use of silencers has been restricted in the US since the 1930’s. one can purchase a silencer, which are generally referred to as modifiers with an application to the US government and a payment of $200 per modifier. There was a gentleman selling them at the last gun show in Bozeman and he would do all of the paperwork. The US has some of the most liberal gun control laws in the world and Britain has some of the most restrictive laws in the world. It is a requirement in certain parts of the UK to use a modifier when hunting certain areas. They are also very common in New Zealand. Should they be allow in the US? I would not want to use one due to the extra weight at the barrel tip which would require some getting use to.

  96. avatar WM says:

    Expanding population of wolves in Germany gets mixed reviews. Doesn’t look like the NRM and GL farmers/ranchers/hunters are all alone in their thoughts and concerns.

    http://www.news24.com/SciTech/News/Wolves-make-a-comeback-in-Germany-20120130

    • avatar Immer Treue says:

      Not alone in their thoughts and concerns, but very alone in terms of population density vs that of Germany.

    • avatar Jeff N. says:

      What did you expect WM? Considering the anti-wolf attitude crossed the Atlantic with the colonists and the wolf is probably the most controversial animal on the planet; did you think that anti-wolf hysteria was exclusive to the U.S.

      • avatar WM says:

        Jeff N.,

        I did not detect “hysteria” in the article at all. What is common and important is that livestock owners are having to make expenditures to keep wolves away from their animals, and it is done at some cost. The wolf population is expanding in Germany, which means more owners will make such expenditures in the future, and the livestock industry is taking countermeasures to challenge the increased population. And importantly, wolves tend not to prey on livestock when weather makes it easier to get a meal from natural prey.

        These are common threads and concerns wherever wolves are increasing in number. It also lends credence to the idea that the myths and fairytales have some basis in fact at a general level in an agrarian society from centuries ago – wolves can be a pain in the butt for farmers/ranchers, so why would they not demonize them, maybe with some justification?

      • avatar william huard says:

        It’s always helpful to have water carriers like WM to help bring along the hysteria. Those poor hunters in Germany- they have my sympathy really. Don’t let WM fool you- he’s luvin this wolf slaughter- “take that you wolf lovin environmentalists”

        • avatar WM says:

          william,

          If you had read the article you would know it only focused on livestock issues. However, there are other articles focusing on the impacts on hunting in Germany, and the growing tensions which exist there as their population of wolves expand.

          As for the “water carrier” reference, I carry for no one, but appreciate the views of others who would like to join me in seeing wolves managed at about the 500 population in ID, for example. And, I think problem wolves ought to go away immediately, wherever they are.

          • avatar Daniel Berg says:

            Around 500 wolves in Idaho makes sense to me at this point. I think it would get just enough buy-in to keep the fringe from gaining too much momentum. I’m not a biologist, but I haven’t come across a lot of evidence yet that proves 500 in Idaho wouldn’t ensure connectivity and a genetically healthy population there.

            If they manage for 500, based on their counting methods, there could easily be 10% or 20% more than 500 in total. Things could be re-evaluated over time as impacts are measured and the various stakeholders have had time to digest the changed landscape.

  97. avatar Immer Treue says:

    Farmers Eager for Revenge on Attacking Wolves

    http://www.dailypress.net/page/content.detail/id/534605.html

    OK OK! Wolves need to be controlled and perhaps their numbers need be reduced a bit. But the semantics of this headline is rather obtuse. Revenge? When people studying wild canids, or those who favor having the said canids around, all too often the mantra of anthropocentrism is thrown around at these people. Seeking revenge upon an animal?

    In fairness to the farmers/ranchers interviewed, all they want is a chance to protect their livestock, they speak not of revenge. Perhaps a step in the correct direction is for the press to rein in what they write, in particular the headlines of an article. An objective title such as Farmers given OK to protect livestock in first step toward co-existence with Wolves would make more sense. But no, its seeking revenge on an animal. As Cody Coyote wrote so well in a recent posting, journalism has de-evolved.

  98. avatar Carter Niemeyer says:

    Something to examine closely in the Northern Rockies wolf recovery area, and perhaps in the Great Lakes region after delisting, is how many wolves actually get shot by livestock owners, even with permits? It rarely happens. Wolves operate at night and unless a stockman really gets serious about laying for wolves in the early morning hours or late into the evening, he will never find one to shoot. I don’t think wolves face much additional risk to their longevity letting people protect their livestock on their private property.

    • avatar Immer Treue says:

      Carter,

      I agree that livestock owners in the GL States will have little impact on wolves. Dale Luek of MN, in the article, has pushed for years for delisting. The legions have proclaimed for years to let hunters do what DNR has been doing for years, and they’ll pay for the pleasure, possibly saving the state money in both services to remove wolves and reimbursement costs…

      All this does is give them the chance. One comment made was “I can shoot a neighbors dog harrassing my livestock, but I could not shoot I wolf”. This is a statement that can no longer be made.

      • avatar ma'iingan says:

        “I agree that livestock owners in the GL States will have little impact on wolves.”

        When wolves were delisted in Wisconsin for a few months in 2009, WDNR issued forty-something shooting permits to producers, and only four wolves were killed. The most pronounced effect was the good will generated with the affected producers, who were empowered to protect their investment.

        • avatar Immer Treue says:

          ma’iingan,

          Agreed, as was the point made in my original statement for a better title to the article.

          ” Farmers given OK to protect livestock in first step toward co-existence with Wolves.”

  99. avatar Mike says:

    Minnesota charges man who allegedly killed protected cougar:

    http://www.dl-online.com/event/article/id/65660/group/homepage/

    • avatar Maska says:

      Bounties? To paraphrase what somebody once said about a reactionary, mid-20th century politician: Every morning these folks put their boots on backwards and walk straight forward into the past. ;-)

      • avatar Daniel Berg says:

        It’s amusing to see a group of people try and relate so proudly to a untamed past, and also reference that past in an attempt to paint themselves as rugged individualists, then scream for a more sterilized landscape at every turn.

        Calling for a bounty on predators just goes to show how out of touch some folks are with the reality of the world we live in. If the laws were lax enough to allow a county to issue a bounty on wolves, they would be lax enough to allow for increased funding to Wildlife Services in order to achieve a much quicker systematic slaughter of wolves, cougars, or any other predator over a much shorter time period with areial gunning, poison, trapping, gassing, etc. While they were at it, maybe every month Wildlife Services could provide the carcasses of every predator killed to local county officials who could pile them all up in a great heap in some public space. They could douse the pile in gasoline and hold a potluch and raffle off the opportunity to throw the first match.

        A bounty on predators…..Ha!! With the technology we have today, I think it’s an insult to the distant past to reference it in the context of controlling wildlife in today’s world.

  100. avatar Paul says:

    Link to proposed wolf “harvesting” bill in Wisconsin. This bill allows for hunting with dogs, bait, and night hunting of wolves. Are there any other states that allow for hounding of wolves or night hunting? Notice that all other hunting seasons in the bill are called “hunting” seasons, but wolf killing seasons are called wolf “harvesting” seasons. And of course they continue to offer reimbursement for bear hounders whose dogs are killed by wolves.

    https://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/2011/related/proposals/ab502

    Look out Idaho and Wyoming, Wisconsin is out to surpass you guys in terms of wolf killin and the brutal manner in which it is done. Can anyone explain to me why Wisconsin wants to allow for hounding of wolves?

    • avatar Paul says:

      Additional from the clown that wrote the bill.

      “Rep. Scott Suder (R-Abbotsford) would like the state to issue hunting permits for wolves.
      “It’s not going to be an all out hunting season and free-for-all. It will be much like bear hunting with permits issued. We need to bring the population down to the 350 level,” said Suder. He estimates there are between 1,000 and 2,500 gray wolves in Wisconsin. He says more than 30 attacks on livestock and pets have been reported over the past few years.”

      Between 1,000 and 2,500 wolves? Last I heard there were under 800. Where is this guy getting his numbers? So 60 percent of the wolves need to be killed because of “30” attacks over the past few YEARS? Give me a break. And they wonder why wolf advocates keep filing lawsuits. This is flat out misinformation that this guy is spewing and it needs to be corrected.

      http://www.wsaw.com/home/headlines/Hunting_Wolves_a_Possibility_in_Wisconsin_138371484.html

    • avatar Jon Way says:

      Yet when wolves kill their dogs for chasing them I am sure they will go complaining and bitching back to their state reps. The good old circle of life…

      • avatar Paul says:

        Here is a news story from Wisconsin Public Television from 2010 about this issue.

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8iLAJgAijEg

        These hounders absolutely make me want to puke. Their dogs are “like family” yet they run them into the woods and don’t seem to understand that wolves or even the bears could kill them. Would you send your “children” out like that? I don’t know why I even asked that. Just looking at these people gives me the answer.

        • avatar Paul says:

          By the way, did that look like “hunting” to any of you? Bait piles, radios, tracking collars, pick up trucks? And these are the type of people that will determine the future of the gray wolf in Wisconsin?

          • avatar william huard says:

            Paul-
            I think the more people find out about the slob hound hunters the worse it will be for them……The numbers are clearly against them. But hey, they invest $2.00 to put a freakin bell around the dogs collar…..Do you think the moneygrubbers go for the refund on the bell after the dog gets killed by the wolfpack?

          • avatar Paul says:

            Yes, they probably will. But if the numbers are against them why do they keep getting their way in our governing bodies? As much as I dislike the whole hunting culture, I have come to realize that I can accept the hunting of animals in the Cervidae family (deer, elk, etc) as long as it is done for food. I don’t like it or want anything to do with it , but I can accept it. What I have a major problem with is predator hunting/trapping for sport or for unnecessary “control.” “Recreational” trappers and bear hounders are a whole different league. I revile these people as much as I do racists, anti-Semites, gangbangers, etc. These people exist for nothing more than to fulfill their own selfish wants. They give a black eye to the entire hunting community, yet they continue to be accepted or at least tolerated by them. Hounders and recreational trappers act like we owe them something. They act as if the public lands are there for their benefit only and we just have to “get over it” if we object. Screw them. ALL citizens own the PUBLIC land. I am really fired up about this if you can’t tell. I hope other Wisconsin citizens are as pissed off as me and fight fire with fire with these bear hounding scum. I would think that most ethical hunters in Wisconsin would agree with me, and be furious at the special treatment bear hounders receive. No other state in the country reimburses hounders for having their dogs killed, except Wisconsin. Again, why do these people have so much sway? I never hear anything good about them, even from fellow hunters. Word needs to get out about their abuses.

          • avatar william huard says:

            The first think that needs to happen in Wisconsin is the recall of Gov Walker. Feingold or whoever else wins the election can appoint a “pro-wildlife” appointee to the DNR that will not pander to the Wisc bear Hunters Assoc. Take the activism and start a referendum to get slob bear hounding banned….It can be done. Michigan and Minn don’t allow it- that’s reinforcement for a ban. Especially now that wolves are part of the equation….Suder and the other dipshits in the legislative body will be looking for a compromise- like allowing for wolf hunting with dogs with no reimbursment for the dogs killed….. look out for that

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            I think any “public” sector employee that speaks his/her mind, is not long for that position, nor is their superior, if discipline is not meted out.

            Therein lies a large portion of the problem. Public sector employees, who’s position it is to represent/work for the public, are trumped by the organization and money of “special” interest groups.

            Doesn’t matter if it’s education, remember Creel, on the high end, K-12 where teacher’s who speak up are held in contempt by boards, or wildlife and WDNR… one who speaks up is in jeopardy.

            • avatar Ralph Maughan says:

              Immer Treue

              When I was a professor at Idaho State University, there were numerous efforts to get rid of me, usually on the guise of using public property for political purposes, but I had that one figured out from the start. Never use it!! Most of it came of jackass legislators from Central Idaho. I always beat them easily, but if I were working today I’d be toast.

              The professors who dare speak out are retired ones like me, and there are not the many of course. Free speech is being shut down in the United States, not by jailing people, but by loss of their job.
              The end result of this kind of repression is economic decline and failure to restrain bad ideas. What if there had not been Google and social networks when SOPA came along recently? The Internet would have been crippled in the U.S. hurting our freedom and our meager prosperity.

          • avatar Savebears says:

            Immer,

            You can say that again, I know it for a fact.

        • avatar Immer Treue says:

          A two dollar bell is unnatural!!! What about the incessant baying? More like a call for here I am and the dinner bell.

          And again the 350 number.

          • avatar Paul says:

            If you can stomach it check out the comments from hounders on this site:

            http://www.biggamehoundsmen.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=27617&p=187415

            From the site:

            “I’m not holding my breath on this deal, but I would be ALL OVER hunting them with dogs. Section off a solo one and then pack that SOB with about 6 tough dogs. It’s either baying or coming out, and it’s all going down in a halo of gunfire. I’ve seen what these crittes are capable of and we are well past being able to get some payback.
            What I don’t understand is why the DNR can’t go into problem depredation areas, say the Flag river bottoms, or East of Solon, or Shanagolden, or the Empire and just wipe out a bunch of those packs who always kill dogs. Just go in there and take out 20 of them to see if it makes a difference. It sure as heck can’t hurt.”

            Yes, lets go kill entire packs because you frickin slobs lost some of your dogs that are running through wolf habitat trying to kill other animals. These are the people who are now dictating wildlife policy in Wisconsin. Not the DNR, citizens, or other hunters, these frickin people are. Can someone with knowledge about Wisconsin wildlife policy please tell me why these people have so much power? I assume that they are a very small number of the overall hunting population. I hate seeing any animal get hurt, but if these bastards get this bill passed I hope that they lose so many dogs that it hits them right in the pocketbook and they will think twice about hunting wolves with dogs again. Of course then people like Suder will step in and pass legislation to reimburse them for dogs lost to wolves while they are hounding the wolves. We wouldn’t want their fragile little feelings to get hurt.

          • avatar Paul says:

            Another comment from the above site:

            “if they start chasing them theres a good chance they ll either turn and fight if there close enough to there den and call for others. for the cost of a box of rifle bullets and a call i think its worth more than a hounds life. remember there fighters by in stinkt. another problem is that the wolves are getting bold cause theyve gone unchecked for so long. wolves are the only animal that holds a grudge. and its not a federal offense to shot them u cant go to jail any more u just get a fine. And if u guys run into dnr agent out in the field don’t bit there head off about they know the problem its the ones in office building all day they right the rule that are lost.”

            These are the people that we are letting dictate wildlife policy? They are the buffoons that are catered to by this state? This clown not only hates wolves, but he must also hate spell check, and his grammar teacher. Holy crap!

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            Wolves have become the great equalizer in Wisconsin forests. The first video you showed, these folks don’t really know where their dogs are.

            Oh, and speaking of anthropomorphizing, now we are aware that wolves are the only animal that holds a grudge. How about just protecting territory from noisy, not well adapted, invasive species.

          • avatar ma'iingan says:

            “Can someone with knowledge about Wisconsin wildlife policy please tell me why these people have so much power?”

            The Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association, Hunters Rights Coalition, Wisconsin Wildlife Federation, Wisconsin Bowhunters Association, and Safari Club International all have lobbyists in Madison, and they all support each other.

            One of the HRC shills was appointed to a seat on the Natural Resources Board by Governor Walker, and the Secretary of WDNR is also a Walker appointee.

            Are you getting the picture?

          • avatar Paul says:

            ma’iingan,

            I get the picture very clear. I guess this is another reason why Walker must go. We may not see eye to eye on some issues, but I gather from your posts that you are not too happy with this bill either. What is the vibe about it from those that work in the field with you? From the DNR people that I know and legislative contacts they all feel that Suder went way too far with the provisions in this bill, and that it is too controversial to pass the senate if it even gets that far. I hope that they are right. Many people put so much time and effort to bring this animal back from the brink and now all of that work will be pissed away if this bill passes. Of course the collective bargaining bill was probably the most controversial event in the history of this state and look how they rammed that through. Of course that led to recalls and a lot of pissed off people. I have a feeling that this wolf bill will do the same. Another thing that I was told by my legislative contact was that the top DNR wolf biologist was not even invited or allowed to testify about the bill. Democracy in action.

          • avatar ma'iingan says:

            “What is the vibe about it from those that work in the field with you?”

            If you saw the testimony of the two retired WDNR biologists on WisEye, you saw an accurate portrayal of the reaction of every wildlife professional that I collaborate with, whether from WDNR, Wildlife Services, USFS, or the tribes.

          • avatar WM says:

            It seems very odd to me that the agency responsible for administering the law (if the bill becomes law) was not asked to testify. It is also odd, that the committee members asking questions of Suder and other bill sponsors why the DNR had not testified, and more specifically to ask them for their opinion on it – as to the science, meshing with existing hunting regulations AND these days the cost of administering the provisions.

            Are the D’s scared of going down that path? Is the DNR head on thin ice and choosing not to weigh in? Lots of questions on what appears to be a path parallel to the wacko legislators in ID, and administration by legislation of their wolf management, rather than letting the department of professionals they hire to do their job.

          • avatar JB says:

            WM:

            Agency folks that have opinions on issues like this quickly find their career trajectories altered (usually not for the better). Thus, you have retired WI DNR people speaking out, just as retired ADF&G personnel spoke out against the killing of griz and wolves to boost moose populations.

  101. avatar Paul says:

    Disharmony among trappers and hunters in Minnesota:

    http://www.startribune.com/sports/outdoors/138013713.html

    From the article:

    “John Reynolds, 58, of Merrifield, is a longtime hunter and trapper who was trapping fox on public land near Emily, Minn., in December with his 50-pound springer spaniel, Penni, when his dog disappeared. He later found her dead in a baited body-gripping trap set by another trapper.

    “She meant the world to me,” he said.

    Am I the only one who sees the irony in this? The guy kills other canids for fun and is upset when his canid gets killed by the tools of his own trade. Then he wants to ban body gripping traps, but says it is okay to use those same traps to drown other animals. And there are questions why some of us are concerned about “how” animals die? I hate to see any animal die, but maybe there is such a thing as karma.

    • avatar Mike says:

      ++“She meant the world to me,” he said.

      Am I the only one who sees the irony in this? The guy kills other canids for fun and is upset when his canid gets killed by the tools of his own trade. Then he wants to ban body gripping traps, but says it is okay to use those same traps to drown other animals. And there are questions why some of us are concerned about “how” animals die? I hate to see any animal die, but maybe there is such a thing as karma.++

      I feel bad for the loss of his dog, but man, this guy isn’t too bright. And that’s a problem with many hunters. They are literally some of of the dumbest people I’ve met.

      • avatar Paul says:

        Mike,

        I think that stupidity crosses all lines in our society. I have come across several brain dead hunters/trappers, but that same stupidity is not exclusive to only them. After working in public safety for 14 years I can assure you that there are morons in all walks of life and what is even more terrifying is that stupid people are master breeders. Some couples try for years to have a baby, but you can sneeze of some of the morons in our society and they are pregnant with twins the next day. Has anyone else ever wondered why stupid people are so fertile?

    • avatar Doryfun says:

      Over the years, I have seen two lynx in my area of Idaho (north central) with 95% confidence that they were not bobcats. Interestingly, one was chasing a coyote away from a new born fawn it was sneaking up on. Once the coyote was chased away, the doe came out and ran the lynx off. It was a great show. Much better than seeing one caught in a trap.

  102. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Wolves attack people in Karelian town. http://en.rian.ru/strange/20120131/171045959.html
    This time there is no vodka promotion video attached

    • avatar william huard says:

      I read the other day that the GOP in FLA doesn’t think the pythons eating ALL the wildlife in FLA is as big s a concern as the possible job creation effects if there are “regulations” against the snakes….Ah yes- the modern day GOP-Who thinks like that? A snake breeder perhaps?
      http://motherjones.com/media/2012/01/zina-saunders-gop-voters

      When aliens have to come down to earth and “save us from ourselves” I hope they bring the conservative movement back with them back to outer space where they belong.

  103. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Sweden: Hunter attacked and mauled by a bear
    It is believed that the hunter’s dog did wake up the bear from hibernation, prompting the animal’s attack.
    http://www.thelocal.se/38846/20120201/

  104. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Hunters to Jefferson County: Think twice about wolf bounty http://helenair.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/hunters-to-jefferson-county-think-twice-about-wolf-bounty/article_5257b348-4ca3-11e1-98cb-001871e3ce6c.htmlQuite clear who rules there! Ah and “……if a bounty won’t work, he thinks that people hunting, fishing and sight seeing should compensate livestock producers for their losses. Those don’t just include animals that are confirmed dead by federal agents, but also the weight loss for cattle that are stressed by large predators’ presence” That´s what you´ll get for your wildlife watching fee!

  105. avatar WM says:

    Wildlife news, sort of, since we talk about beef on this forum so often. There are reasons I have not had a McDonalds beef product in well over a decade, and steer (pun intended), away from beef products I cannot identify in the store. Watch the video that accompanies this article.

    http://usnews.msnbc.msn.com/_news/2012/01/31/10282876-mcdonalds-drops-use-of-gooey-ammonia-based-pink-slime-in-hamburger-meat

  106. avatar Paul says:

    Fluff piece about trapper in North Dakota.

    http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2012/01/25/2365596/north-dakota-outdoorsman-says.html#storylink=mirelated

    “Once you start, you’ve just got to do it – even if they’re not worth anything,” he said. “It’s kind of a disease.”

    What kind of disease would that be? Mental illness?

  107. avatar Salle says:

    This is important, please try to attend one of these, or at least make comments.

    Yellowstone Park continues work on winter use plan, sets public meetings

    http://billingsgazette.com/news/state-and-regional/montana/yellowstone-park-continues-work-on-winter-use-plan-sets-public/article_f54700df-854c-582b-8c17-c8f8173c19ab.html

    Park staff plan the following meetings, each from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.:

    — Cody: Feb. 13, Holiday Inn, 1702 Sheridan Ave.

    — Jackson: Feb. 14, The Virginian Lodge, 750 W. Broadway.

    — West Yellowstone, Mont: Feb.15, Holiday Inn, 315 Yellowstone Ave.

    — Bozeman, Mont: Feb. 16, Holiday Inn, 5 Baxter Lane

  108. avatar Salle says:

    Hunters to Jefferson County: Think twice about wolf bounty

    http://helenair.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/hunters-to-jefferson-county-think-twice-about-wolf-bounty/article_5257b348-4ca3-11e1-98cb-001871e3ce6c.html

    “Three men who describe themselves as avid hunters and houndsmen said while they’re not big fans of wolves — and all three were part of the 18,000 people who bought a $19 permit this year to shoot one — they want the commission to cut FWP and the federal government some slack when it comes to managing wolves. This is only the second year that wolf hunting has been legal in Montana.

    “Give them the chance to learn about this and let the process work a little bit,” said Josh Pallister. “It’s not that I love wolves, but we are uneducated about them.”

    He added that he believes mountain lions and coyotes are killing a lot more fawns, deer and elk calves than wolves.”

    And another point…

    “It’s well determined in history that bountying is legalized fraud and I know that money is an issue of concern to every person,” Bullis said.

    In addition, Bullis noted that the bounty statute allows for rewarding the killing of mountain lion kittens and wolf pups, and paying for that would smear the state’s reputation.

    “I question whether Montana values allow the killing of innocent lives,” Bullis said. “I think that’s certainly not reflective of the people in this room.”

    Another problem with the bounty is that mountain lions and gray wolves are managed as game animals by Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks. That state agency sets quotas and hunting seasons; and as their regulations currently stand, shooting game animals like wolves and lions outside of the seasons, taking them without the required permits or killing more than the quota is illegal. And since only 145 wolves have been harvested out of the 220 quota this year — with the season ending for most of Montana on Feb. 15 — it’s unclear whether the bounty would make a difference. “

  109. avatar Paul says:

    Wisconsin scientists not happy about provisions in proposed wolf bill.

    http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/environment/wolf-hunting-bill-goes-too-far-scientists-tell-lawmakers/article_40235420-4d2a-11e1-8618-0019bb2963f4.html

    This Suder guy sure is big on fear mongering.

    “We need to make sure people are secure in their homes,” he said. “We cannot afford the kind of incidents that have been occurring.”

    Would someone refresh my memory. How many people have been attacked by wolves in Wisconsin? How many wolves have broken into peoples homes? At least these scientists are speaking out against the most disturbing aspects of the bill.

    • avatar ma'iingan says:

      “Wisconsin scientists not happy about provisions in proposed wolf bill.”

      This proposed legislation is an attempt to circumvent the normal WDNR Adminstrative Rule process, which has been the traditional means to establish hunting seasons in Wisconsin.

      The normal process would involve collaboration between the Conservation Congress, Wolf Stakeholders’ Committee, Wolf Science Committee, and ultimately, presentation to the Natural Resources Board.

      Once approved, it would become an Administrative Rule, not a law. Administrative Rules can be changed by WDNR as conditions and goals change, by presenting change proposals to the NRB – if this hunting season is created by legislation, it can only be changed by legislation.

      • avatar Paul says:

        Thank you for clarifying that. I don’t like it but I accept that there will be some type of wolf hunting allowed in Wisconsin. Why does this Suder and his cronies feel the need to bypass established procedures? This proposed bill goes way too far and is about as extreme as you can get. Dogs? Night hunting? Bait? No quota on private property? I guess if this passes they should not be surprised to see lawsuits pop up again. Are these guys for real? As an insider do you expect this bill to go anywhere?

        • avatar Jon Way says:

          Maybe the “enlightened” lawmakers will consider house hunting as well, although if WI has the same shooting rules as MA, and allows baiting, then it might also be permissible as well… pretty sad.

      • avatar Immer Treue says:

        ma,

        if I’m out of line, I’m sure you will correct me, and I’ll consider myself more enlightened. The itch is beginning. WDNR proposes one thing, the legislation could, will, might propose something quite different. In that case, what is the purpose of the DNR in the case of wolves?

        You know, from the past, that I have supported the MNDNR and the way they have handled wolves in MN, so I know wolves will and must be managed for any number of worthwhile reasons, if for none other than for the wolves themselves. But..

        Go ahead and use dogs, and as much as I like dogs, I hope the wolves chew them to bits. Night hunting… WI must be insane!

        Sorry, but the need to KILL seems to out way the need to MANAGE. Lets get the WI deer down to 350. Almost no car collisions, no agricultural damage due to deer, CWD nipped in the bud…

        • avatar Paul says:

          This bill was introduced in typical Walker GOP fashion. It was introduced late in the day on Friday and the hearing was announced yesterday to take place this morning. Several wolf advocates that I know were shocked when I notified them of the bill and the hearing this morning. I am glad that these scientists spoke out against this killing bill. As much as I hate hunting and how the WI DNR “manages” predators like bears, they seemed to be taking a relatively reasoned methodology towards wolves. Then the power hungry blowhards like Suder come along and try to embarrass the DNR by attempting to pass extreme legislation like this to pander to wolf haters like the WI Bear Hunters Association. Who else would they be trying to pander to? Bear hounders have been pushing for years to have at wolves and they get exactly what they want in this bill, including continued payments for bear dogs killed by wolves. We are all tired of most litigation concerning wolves, but if this bill passes I say bring on the lawsuits. From the article:

          “Among those who testified Wednesday was Dick Thiel, who is now retired but started the wolf recovery program for the state Department of Natural Resources in the 1980s. He is also the author of two books on Wisconsin’s wolf recovery efforts.
          “As it is written now, you run the risk of seriously offending many citizens who have supported wolf recovery for 35 years,” Thiel said. “And that will invite litigation that will lock up progress on wolf management.”

          Very well said!

          • avatar Paul says:

            What pisses me off more than anything is the fact that after the intent to delist in the Great Lakes was announced months ago the pro-wolf groups held their fire and did not file lawsuits hoping that the states would keep their word. Now this SOB Suder and his cronies come along and spit right in their face by writing a bill that includes every form of hunting that these groups deplore. Then he flat out admits that he wants to bring the wolf numbers down to the absolute minimum. Why would it have been so difficult to ease their way in to this like Minnesota is at least pretending that they are doing? No Suder has to be just like Walker and rub it in the faces of those “godless liberals” that are pro-wolf. I hope that the backlash if swift and hard against this bill, but I am afraid that it will be rubber stamped like all bills that concern wildlife in this state. If that happens bring on the lawsuits!

          • avatar william huard says:

            Paul-
            Today I had a 15 minute conversation with a senior DNR biologist who works with wolves in the state. Apparently weasel Suter has been taking quite a bit of heat over this proposed legislation. He told me he is confident that the hounds, night hunting, and extreme (Idaho like) “we’ll just kill all but 151 or 351″ will not fly. The “non political” biologists like my contact favor a hunt or reduction of wolves which focuses on areas where there are problems with depredation for instance….and you leave the packs that aren’t causing problems alone. Too bad Idaho can’t think like that. He said the meeting in madison yesterday can be viewed under bill ab502 on Wisconsineye…..The last 4 speakers were biologists not affiliated with the Wisc Bear Hunters Assoc we’ll see

        • avatar ma'iingan says:

          “WDNR proposes one thing…”

          I don’t know that WDNR has actually weighed in yet – of the four scientists who addressed the hearing, none were current WDNR employees.

          • avatar Paul says:

            Another article about this bill. Also in the article is another proposed bill to allow hunting of sandhill cranes. It should also be noted that Wisconsin is home to the International Crane Foundation. What irony. Kind of like the obsession that many in this state had with wanting to kill the international symbol of peace: the mourning dove.

            http://www.jsonline.com/sports/outdoors/state-striking-quickly-on-wolf-issues-9v41gjk-138538919.html

            There seems to be universal concern about the provisions of allowing dogs, night hunting, and the length of the season. It seems to me that this bill was written to give every hunter/trapper special interest group their preferred method for killing wolves. Whether a bill moves forward or not this hounding and night hunting insanity needs to be removed.

            The authors of the bill are also talking out of both sides of their mouth. Suder says that he wants the number of wolves to be taken down to 350 while Rivard claims that it is not the intent of the bill to reduce the numbers down to 350. These fools claim that they wrote the bill and they are not even on the same page. Any bets that the WI Bear Hunters Association is the “ghost writer” of this bill? This type of overreaction is exactly what keeps putting this issue before the courts. Hours after the official delisting takes place they rush a bill out there knowing that it will be rubber stamped by the very committee that these two “authors” are the heads of. I have been saying for months that Wisconsin would author the most extreme plan, and here it is coming to pass. Minnesota is at least trying to give the illusion that they are being “conservative” with their plans. Wisconsin just want to plunge headfirst into wolf killing with these half-assed special interest pandering bills.

          • avatar william huard says:

            Suder is a liar. As he tries to circumvent the established way hunting seasons are implemented- his aides in his office are telling people(including me) that the DNR has worked (hand in hand) with him in writing this proposed legislation.
            Can anyone find the link last year by (Demarcated Landscapes I think) which commented on why idiot politicians should stay out of “wildlife management” decisions ……

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            ma’iingan

            Allow me to rephrase, will the WDNR be allowed to weigh in? Or just carry out orders?

          • avatar Paul says:

            William,

            I also contacted Suder’s office and received the same reply. Judging from the tone of the woman that I spoke to that office is getting bombarded with complaints. I then contacted the DNR and was told that they were at the hearing for “informational” purposes only and were not taking sides on the bill. I also contact both my State Senator and Representative. The senator is a Republican, but his office at least agreed with me about the concerns regarding hounding, and night hunting. My representative (who is a deer hunter)was in a hearing, but I spoke with his assistant for quite awhile and he assured me that the representative agrees with me 100% regarding the rushed nature of this bill and the provisions contained within. He also said that during the hearing yesterday Suder appeared to have no clue what was even contained in the bill that he “authored.” The assistant told me that it is believed that the bill was written by outside influences (WI Bear Hunters Association). He also said that the bill will probably pass the GOP controlled assembly, but faces a tougher fight in the Senate. He also said that there have been many concerned citizens calling this morning not only about the bill, but about the manner in which the “hearing” was scheduled only a day before. Apparently several of the most renowned wolf experts in the state were not even aware of it, nor were they invited.

            As a Wisconsin citizen, I understand that there will eventually be wolf hunting allowed. I don’t like it, but that is the way it is. That being said there is absolutely no reason that this “bill” was rushed forward and how it contains all of the most vile forms of “hunting” that are allowed. Word about this needs to get out, and soon. I hope that Ralph can put a blurb about this bill on the site so that others are aware of this and maybe get enough Wisconsin citizens against it before it can pass. Or at minimum pressure Suder and his cronies to remove the most distasteful elements of the bill.

          • avatar william huard says:

            Suder is a little right wing weasel. These politicians are a disgrace to their office.

          • avatar william huard says:

            I was told a few of them were retired DNR employees…..

          • avatar Paul says:

            William,

            Here is a program that aired this morning on WI Public Radio where they interviewed Suder. Just click on play.

            http://wpr.org/cardin/index.cfm?strDirection=Prev&dteShowDate=2012-02-02%2008%3A00%3A00%2E0

            I have never heard so much double talk in my life. He also said that he will not compromise on allowing dogs to kill wolves because it is “tradition.” He also makes it very clear that his “limited” four and a half month hunting season will “protect the wolf population” but also bring their numbers down to 350. He calls it a “conservative” plan. He also thinks that this radical plan will prevent the “feds” from stepping in and taking over management. Is this guy that dense? If anything this type of radical bill will draw all kinds of attention from the feds and open the door to lawsuits. Somehow this idiot thinks that the bill will prevent that. Holy crap, what happened to my state? I used to think that we were one of the more progressive states in the union now we have become Wississippi.

          • avatar Paul says:

            William,

            Check out the comments from a couple the callers, especially the one trying to justify the dog hunting. Holy crap!

          • avatar william huard says:

            Hound hunting is tradition? That’s code word for Wisc Bear Hunters Assoc is my daddy and I’m their Bit^%. Like all right wingers this stupid troll is too dense to write a comprehensive bill. He’s got the “FEDs are bad” talking point down though doesn’t he?

          • avatar Paul says:

            William,

            If you get a chance listen to the whole thing. I have never heard so much double talk and bull$shit. I hope you are right about the heat that Suder is taking because he sure sounded like a cocky prick when saying that he was sure the bill was going to pass. I have never been an “activist” per se but this is my own backyard and the lies and misinformation that this guy and his cronies are spewing have really got me fired up. I have been calling and writing letters all day trying to make people aware of this. As I said before, I am resigned to the fact that there will be wolf hunting in Wisconsin, but the methods allowed in this bill are ridiculous. If this hunt is so “limited” why does it last four and a half months? How is going from 800 to 350 “limited?”

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            ma’iingan says:
            February 2, 2012 at 6:17 pm
            Immer –

            In Wisconsin, the Secretary of the WDNR is appointed by the Governor.

            Be still my beating heart

          • avatar william huard says:

            I listened to the whole thing. I got a kick out of the yokel that called Patricia a “liberal”. She’s right. It’s not about the number- this is about providing more opportunty to the DNR’s clients in the wake of an animal that was just delisted……Just keep showing the video to everyone you talk to about this issue of the hound hunters that let their dogs rip at the Bear CUB that was bleeding to death on the ground……that’s tradition.

          • avatar Paul says:

            William,

            Was I right that Suder that didn’t have a clue what he was talking about? He was fed a script from his masters and he kept repeating the same talking points over and over. He actually had the nerve to act like this is not “hatred” wolves. What else is it then when you want to kill 60% of an animal fresh of the endangered species list? This guy like the rest of Walker’s GOP are bought and paid for by special interests.

          • avatar william huard says:

            I really get the impression that Wisconsin is not Idaho or Wyoming. There will be changes to the leg- including an adjustment upward in that “number”. There isn’t the “rabid” rancher lobby, but then again it will be interesting to see how the hound issue plays out.

          • avatar Paul says:

            Interesting, but admittedly liberal, view on the wolf bill and how Walker’s administration has once again ignored them.

            http://www.progressive.org/walker_favors_wolf_hunters_over_native_rights.html

            Another great quote from Scott Suder about his bill in the article:

            “We need this to protect ourselves from the feds and to make sure people are secure in their homes.” He added, “We don’t want to give people who are going to sue on the federal level any ammunition or excuse to further their suit.”

            Apparently he doesn’t think that there is anything in this bill that will give the feds or pro-wolf groups any ammunition. Is this guy really that dense? I think that the hounding issue alone is more than enough to bring on a lawsuit. Remind me again when the last time a wolf broke into someones home was?

          • avatar william huard says:

            Walker is such a goof. Why don’t you guys convince Russ Feingold to run against Walker to put MR Baldy out of his misery?
            The more you read about the Bear Hunters asssoc the worse it gets….
            I bet the general public doesn’t know that their contributions toward Endangered Species protection goes to reimburse slob hunters for their dogs….Outrageous.
            Walker and Mr Scott in Fla will go down as the worst two Governors in history.

        • avatar Immer Treue says:

          ma,

          Thank you. I consider myself more enlightened.

          • avatar WM says:

            To add to JB’s inquiry, would night hunting allow the use of devices like night vision goggles or scopes?

          • avatar ma'iingan says:

            Immer –

            In Wisconsin, the Secretary of the WDNR is appointed by the Governor.

            JB –

            I don’t understand the logic of night hunting, nor do my colleagues, other than parts of this bill seem to incorporate some of the current coyote hunting rules.

            There’s a clumsy attempt to promote wolves as big game trophy animals by issuing preference points and charging $100 for a license – while at the same time lumping them together with raccoon, skunk, and fox, all of which may be hunted at night.

            WM –

            Current regulations do not allow night vision devices unless they emit absolutely zero light during operation.

          • avatar JB says:

            Thanks, Ma. It sure would be interesting to know where that particular idea came from.

          • avatar Paul says:

            JB,

            I spoke with some people from the DNR,and an assistant for a state representative, and they all agree that this bill has the fingerprints of the Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association all over it. One even told me that The “author,” Suder, didn’t even know what was in the bill at yesterdays hearing. Something is very wrong here, and I am not the only one seeing it. If I were an employee of the WI DNR I would be furious at being undermined like this because of the whining of a few special interest groups.

          • avatar ma'iingan says:

            “If I were an employee of the WI DNR I would be furious at being undermined like this because of the whining of a few special interest groups.”

            You got it – the WDNR Wolf Biologist was not informed of the hearing until the day before, and was not allowed to testify.

            At the hearing, Rep. Suder continually referred to “consulting with WDNR biologists”, however no one in the bureau can identify who these “biologists” are.

        • avatar JB says:

          I was surprised by the night hunting as well. I’d be interested to hear ma’iingan’s views about the logic behind allowing night hunting of wolves?

          • avatar Paul says:

            Additional information on this bill and who is supporting it:

            http://ethics.state.wi.us/scripts/currentSession/LegProps.asp?key=REGAB502

            All of the usual suspects are there, but one baffles me. The Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association? What the hell do wolves have to do with cranberries? Are they going to say that they are decimating cranberries now? Safari Club, and cranberry growers in the same league? WTF? I guess Wisconsin cranberries will now have to take a seat along side of Idaho potatoes for products that I will not purchase.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            Listened to the first half, the Suder half of the program. As I was not able to scroll back, I tried to jot down points I heard that were rather damning.

            1. Suder quotes WDNR as agreeing that 350 wolves is correct number.
            2. Dog hunting (wolves?)a tradition?
            3. Suder says 20 -30 dog training/hunting depredations have cost the state $200,000 to $300,000. Pretty darned expensive dogs.
            4. Wolf impact on deer. Caller comment This was so-so. OK wolves will have impact on deer, and I don’t mean this sarcastically, but ma’iingan has said biggest impact on deer in Wisconsin are tough Winters and bears. Suder makes no effort to correct this caller. Well they should do fine this Winter.
            5. The usual can’t let kids go to the bus stop…

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            Just finished the 2nd half of the WPR podcast, and to be honest, wildlife activist Patricia Randolph did not impress me.

          • avatar WM says:

            Immer,

            I listened to the interview this morning. Patricia Randolph did not impress me either. The “wild native nature” argument, while appealing is unrealistic. Her first error of credibility was to start quoting CBD liberally and its view of the world. Her second was pushing the idea that wolves are, indeed, endangered, with as many as there are on the landscape in WI, MN and MI.

            She conveniently forgets the WI wolf management plan implementation was delayed by five or more years as the wolf population increased during the periods of litigation, apparently beyond agreed wolf numbers. And, she is openly opposed to hunting, period, which is why she wants “public participation” in the hearings (so the motive is more than wolves)! Lastly she does not know the ESA law or the cooperation with states provisions. She has not been following what is going on in the NRM with its hunting seasons either (she seems not to understand or rather ignores the delays that have allowed states to amend or legislatively supercede plans and implement hunting seasons or other control measures immediately.

            She does have valid points about the quick scheduling of hearings, and the interviewer should have held Suder’s feet to the fire on that aspect. It would have been most interesting to have him reply to her concerns in a dialog.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            WM,

            Your conclusion from her interview, and Suder’s hit the nail squarely.

            Rubber stamping policy like this in the name of consensus, but without stakeholder feedback, creates nothing but a maelstrom, from which it takes years to repair.

            I will agree with Randolph in a sense, that the wolf has just been delisted the scope of a possible hunting season that drops the population back to 350 is draconian. Nothing wrong with having a season, but with all the “methodology” plus the number of Wisconsin hunters in the field, calls for a conservative harvest limit. See what happens and adjust accordingly.

            The Wisconsin deer population will do quite well this Winter (what Winter). The number of bears in Wisconsin, via ma’iingan, has a greater impact on deer than wolves… The supposed immediate need to cut the wolf population in half is just far fetched.

            As an aside, it will be interesting to see what happens this year because of the mild Winter. Ma’iingan has brought up a Mech study a number of times, that I believe hypothesizes that mild Winters make deer less prone to predation in the Spring, thus livestock becomes a bigger target for wolves.

          • avatar Paul says:

            Here is a YouTube page that has several videos posted from Wednesdays hearing.

            http://www.youtube.com/user/ladyforward1

            After watching these videos it is obvious that Suder has absolutely no clue what he is talking about except for 350, 350, 350, and “management tool.” He keeps trying to “assure” people that this will not be a killing spree, then keeps talking about how the population needs to be 350. 800-1000 down to 350 sure sounds like open season to me. How the hell did this guy become the Assembly Majority Leader in Wisconsin? Oh that right, he has an R behind his name and hates predators.

          • avatar Paul says:

            I just spoke with an assistant for my state representative who is on the committee where the hearing took place. He told me that Suder is indeed taking a major amount of heat for this bill and they do not see it going much further. It is believed that he “authored” this bill as a favor to the WI Bear Hunters Association and their ilk. Apparently even some Republicans are having major concerns about some of the provisions in it. That does not mean that it won’t move forward through the assembly, but the reps assistant believes that the senate will not want to take it up now because of all of the other controversial environmental bills that they are facing. He also mentioned the possibility of lawsuits not only from pro-wolf groups, but from Native American tribes in the state if this bill passes. I think the consensus is that while there needs to be some form of “management” this bill goes to the absolute extreme. I hope that he is right.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            Paul,

            I was only able to waych a minute or two of the video(s) and Suder had to field a question that if a hunter, using dogs, had a ticket for both wolves and bears, and the wolves got his dogs, what would happen then? His response was along the lines that he would hope for honesty from the hunter. How much does a well trained bear dog run?

          • avatar Paul says:

            Immer,

            I saw that too. I actually spit out the water that I was drinking at the time when I heard that comment. This guy is in way over his head.

          • avatar Paul says:

            Also, I did not know how hard he had really been grilled by some on the committee. That was really encouraging. Of course the questioners were all Democrats, but they posed some very valid concerns. Of course all that they received in return were non-answers or 350, 350, 350, and management tool.

          • avatar william huard says:

            I bet Suder has his wife help him to get dressed in the morning. So let’s get this straight- the authors of the wolf bill think taxpayers being on the hook for the funds to reimburse hunters for dog losses should depend on the hunter being honest??????

          • avatar Paul says:

            William,

            That about sums it up. It’s a tradition you know.

          • avatar Paul says:

            William,

            With the exception of military training, and a few weeks in Germany I have lived in Wisconsin for all of my 37 years. For the life of me I absolutely cannot understand how or why bear hounders hold so much sway with certain elements in our governing bodies. Not once have I heard someone, hunter or otherwise say Boy, those bear hounders sure are honest infallible citizens. Not once have I ever hear anything other than complete and total disdain directed towards bear hounders and their “sport.” In fact most of the deer hunters I know do not like predator hunting at all.

            By Suder wanting to allow wolves to be hounded by dogs he is giving a gift to the WI Bear Hunters Association and nothing more. These people have to legally stop running their dogs after bear hunting season ends in October. With this bill they will be able to run their dogs through wolf/bear habitat for a significant portion of the year, even while bears are hibernating. They now can do it for much of the summer and fall. With this bill they can do it all the way until the end of February. I somehow doubt that a dog who has been trained to rip a bear to shreds is going to have a laser focus on wolves only during this time and not harass hibernating bears. And of course Suder “will not compromise” on this issue. My question is, what is he getting from the hounders in return?

          • avatar Mike says:

            The night hunting aspect of this bill, is of course not a surprise. Many hunters would love to see most rules tossed out the window.

            The act of killing animals has become a rebelious exercise more than anything else, a symbol of the government they can shoot without retribution.

    • avatar Paul says:

      Holy crap! Working in the law enforcement field, I thought Wisconsin had far too many specialty plates. We have 40.

      • avatar Nancy says:

        Paul – In a round about way though, it might just be an answer to some of the funding needed for predator losses. Ranchers supporting ranchers.

        I wouldn’t invest in the plate simply because I haven’t seen any real interest or effort from ranchers around me to clean up their “act” when it comes to why predators (big & small) always seem to be hanging around their place of business.

        • avatar Paul says:

          You make a great point, but from a law enforcement perspective it can cause an officer safety issue. If Montana is like Wisconsin each plate has its own entry code when the plate is ran through state or inter-state DOT systems. More plates mean more codes. I remember an instance about 10 years ago where a trooper was shot and killed because he thought a Wisconsin Veterans Plate was an Idaho plate. They looked very similar, and he ran it as an Idaho plate. It did not come back as stolen, and the trooper was killed because the car was stolen and driven by a mentally deranged man. I think that this was in Missouri. If those types of problems can be worked out I think that this is indeed a great way for ranchers to pay their own way. I’m surprised the image of the wolf on the plate didn’t show it eating a calf alive.

          Related to this here is an article that I came across yesterday about Wisconsin Endangered Resources Plates:

          http://www.greenbaypressgazette.com/article/20120202/GPG0204/202020514/Pat-Durkin-column-Endangered-resources-still-need-your-help

          I think that the author doesn’t understand why these plates popularity have dropped so much over the years. I know from firsthand experience that once more people became aware that the money from the plates was going to reimburse bear hounders they either did not purchase or cancelled their plates. If I knew that my money was not going to bear hounders, I would buy the plate in a heartbeat.

  110. avatar Salle says:

    Litter of Rare, Scruffy-Necked Wolf Pups Born in Virginia

    http://www.livescience.com/18219-litter-maned-wolf-pups.html

  111. avatar Salle says:

    Albino Hummingbird Photos Captured In Virginia

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/31/rare-albino-hummingbird_n_1244307.html?ref=green

    (actually two interesting hummingbird stories at this URL)

  112. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Cheetahs head back to India
    The last of these Asiatic cheetahs was shot 64 years ago. Now they want to reintroduce some from Namibia. One of the release areas will then be the first preserve to hold all four of India´s big cats! http://wildlifenews.co.uk/2012/cheetahs-head-back-to-india/
    Also important to note: The government also believes that apart from the conservation and ecological benefits of the introductions there will also be a boost to the local economy through tourism (My note: High time for them to consider a wildlife watcher fee, I guess) !!

  113. avatar Peter Kiermeir says:

    Mountain Lions should be managed through hunting, senator says
    http://www.northplattebulletin.com/index.asp?show=news&action=readStory&storyID=22341&pageID=24
    That´s all you need to make everybody happy: „He said that the mountain lion was “a wonderful part of nature” and that it needs to be managed. “This is a win-win-win-win all the way down the line,” he said. “It’s good for the game commission. It’s good for the land owners. It’s good for the hunters, and it’s just a great management tool to put in place.” Do I somehow see just one looser at the far end of the line??

  114. avatar Paul says:

    Wolf killed in Black Hills:

    http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/wolf-killing-near-custer-inspires-talk-of-controversial-predator/article_971ba080-4e19-11e1-a89c-001871e3ce6c.html

    It does not say how the wolf was killed but I am sure that we can figure it out. I am very familiar with this area and I have always thought that it would be prime wolf habitat. Of course the locals think otherwise. Shock!

    • avatar william huard says:

      One of the comments-
      “The only good animal is one you can shoot. You don’t even have to eat, it is just fun to kill. That is the South Dakota way. Who’s that- Benny Spies?
      It’s no surprise South Dakota was rated worst in the country in how it treats it’s wildlife…..That’s saying something- beating Idaho, Wyoming and Alaska…..

  115. avatar Immer Treue says:

    The Killing continues in Idaho.

    http://www.mtexpress.com/index2.php?ID=2005140593

    • avatar william huard says:

      “Department Deputy Director Jim Unsworth said the agency is still worried about wolves in the LOLO zone in Northern Idaho…..

      Fewer wolves- more ELK…..It’s magic!
      Those 31 wolves that were identified in the LOLO are killing machines, that’s for sure!

      Call Salazar at 202 208 7351 and tell them we don’t want our tax dollars wasted employing the GOON squad in Northern Idaho…..It wouldn’t hurt to then ask for Salzar to resign.

  116. avatar Salle says:

    Experts tap wolves’ senses to steer them from cattle

    http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/local/articles/2012/01/29/20120129experts-tap-wolves-senses-steer-them-from-cattle.html

    An interesting approach. I still think that livestock industry practices should be evaluated too.

  117. avatar Paul says:

    Compare how Michigan is handling the gray wolf delisting to Wisconsin:

    http://www.michiganradio.org/post/what-life-endangered-species-list-could-mean-michigan-wolves

    Michigan has about 95 fewer wolves than Wisconsin, and there is no rush to implement a hunting season. Minnesota is setting a quota of 400 wolves out a population of approximately 3,000. Wisconsin wants to kill 450 wolves out of a population of 800. What is wrong with this picture?

    • avatar DT says:

      Why do you think there is such a difference in the way things are looked at?

      • avatar Paul says:

        DT,

        Being born and raised in Wisconsin I would have to say that much of it is in the culture. Wisconsin allows some of the most unethical and barbaric forms of hunting that there are such as hounding, baiting, and traps that other states have banned. As we discussed earlier in the threads certain special interests in this state have an absolute stranglehold on anything involving wildlife and their management. Minnesota and Michigan are smart enough to realize that if they move too fast and too harshly into killing large numbers of wolves public opinion will turn against them and the floodgates will again be open for lawsuits or federal control. Apparently Wisconsin has no concerns about this because the recently introduced wolf hunting bill allows wolves to be killed in every manner short of landmines, and artillery.

        The people behind this are the same ones that helped Scott Walker tear this state apart last year. As a public employee I lived this firsthand. Nothing like being spit on by the very people that you are there to protect. For some reason we have allowed this once progressive state to be taken over by the dark side who want nothing more than to please their corporate masters, while at the same time doing everything in their power to weaken every environmental protection that we have. I do not know how anyone hunter or non-hunter can support people like this who want to destroy the very things that they claim to cherish. I saw this post a few days ago and thought it sums things up very well:

        “Hey, the Republicans are the party of family values.

        They just don’t mention that it’s Manson family values.”

  118. avatar Salle says:

    Colorado Springs SWAT Sniper Called In To Deal With Escaped Bison

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/02/colorado-springs-escaped-bison_n_1250589.html

  119. avatar Salle says:

    I just had to post this because it shows how far from the real world these candidates are…

    Romney To Nevadans: I Don’t Know ‘What The Purpose Is’ Of Public Lands (Hint: They Pump $1 Billion Into the State Economy)

    http://thinkprogress.org/green/2012/02/03/418141/romney-public-lands/

  120. avatar DT says:

    Wolves seem to be a popular topic here but… Can anyone please point me to where I can find some information about wild horses? I recently viewed a video online about a horse named Cloud. I noticed the video was several years old.

  121. avatar Paul says:

    Very relevant article that gives another view about what has been discussed recently about animals and suffering:

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/animal-emotions/201201/hunters-upset-when-dogs-are-trapped-still-want-hunt

    I posted the article the author talks about a few days ago about the trapper who was upset about his dog being killed in a trap but still wants to trap other animals by drowning them.

  122. avatar Salle says:

    Woodland Caribou In Idaho And Washington Struggle To Survive

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/04/woodland-caribou-in-idaho_n_1254608.html?ref=green

    First quote in the story:

    “We belong here too, not just the animals,” added resident Scott Rockholm.”

    And

    “There is no evidence that reintroduced wolves are eating many of the animals, he said.

    Instead, the Fish and Wildlife Service blames the caribou decline on the loss of contiguous old-growth forests due to logging and wildfires, plus the building of roads and recreational trails that fragment habitat and help predators move into caribou range.

    But many local leaders are determined to prevent the critical habitat designation.

    Bonner County Commissioner Cornel Rasor told the crowd that his goal in calling the meeting was to start the process of derailing the proposal.

    “We’re trying to change the direction of the ship of state,” he said.

    After a public comment period, the federal government will announce its decision on the critical habitat proposal this fall.”

    • avatar WM says:

      This plan calls for critical habitat protective designation of 600 sq. miles, or if characterized as a rectangle, that would be an area of about 20 miles x 30 miles. That is how small the total area would be. This area of the Selkirks is big country, divided in two states. How can that be so tough to help preserve this dwindling species truly in need of protection? You can only log it once, and there are lots of other places for locals to ride their damn snowmobiles out there. It is mostly federal land, anyway.

      Seeing that Rockhead is involved in giving testimony, one has to wonder when the video will be coming out on the topic, distorting facts once again.

      But, in reality, if FWS feels it could need to thin wolves and grizzlies to give the caribou, which number only 50, a chance to increase their numbers, I could support that. Maybe even a genetic infusion of new translocated caribou blood might help.

      Here truly is a species which is endangered and needs help!

      • avatar Salle says:

        I guess they’re also pissed because they can’t go out on their snowmobiles and kill these animals, therefore, no redeeming value to them.

      • avatar JB says:

        A sign of the times. The species and its need is irrelevant for most of these folks. They “automatically” resist anything that could restrict their access and use, and they get really fired up if they think some liberal somewhere likes the policy (’cause anything a liberal likes has got to be wrong). Meanwhile, extractive industries are laughing all the way to the bank.

        [Sorry, I guess I’m feeling cynical this afternoon.]

        • avatar salle says:

          Unfortunately, I’m cynical most days… I find it leads me to the facts of a matter more quickly and often than not.

          Indeed, a sign of the times.

  123. avatar Salle says:

    WTF???

    Yellowstone bison slaughter planned if migration occurs

    http://www.greatfallstribune.com/article/20120205/NEWS01/202050305/Yellowstone-bison-slaughter-planned-migration-occurs

    And I want to know why this is found in a paper in Great Falls? The last bomb that was dropped on the bison via the media came out in Billings… Bozeman can’t handle the news I guess, at least according to the state agency’s reckoning, when FW&P/gov. decide to proceed with their anti-wildlife agenda. Not so opaque as they might desire.

    • avatar Paul says:

      Salle,

      It sure seems like the feds are trying to re-live the 1800’s. First they ok the killing of vast numbers of wolves, now they want to kill vast numbers of bison. What’s next? Declaring war again on the Native Americans? And to think that this is all happening under a supposedly “liberal” administration. I would really hate to see what would happen if Willard or the Newt gets elected.

  124. avatar SEAK Mossback says:

    Sea otters actually encapsulate many of the same issues that circulate around wolves: extirpation, reintroduction (1960s), charisma, and quantified economic damage offset to some extent less quantified ecological and economic benefits from their role as keystone predators. However, it has all played out here in Southeast much differently — in slow motion over decades: both in their range expansion, growing concern about it from some quarters, and certainly the emotional environment. You might call them slow wolves. A recent economic study by the McDowell Group put the cumulative economic impact of the expanding otter population on fisheries for four species (sea cucumber, geoduck, red sea urchin and Dungeness crab) in the past 12 to 21 years at about 10 million lbs. or $13 million ex-vessel value or $22 million wholesale. The abalone fishery was closed long ago and will probably never re-open. It would be interesting to compare those figures with wolves. More difficult to quantify in economic terms is their substantial role in increasing and maintaining kelp forests which have greatly expanded where they have been present. Many coves that were much-used temporary anchorages by fishing vessels 30 years ago are now filled with kelp beds. Those areas are very important rearing areas for many fish species, some of which are commercially important, and certainly when I am trolling in the spring I like to cut close to a kelp bed which will likely hold prey fish that will draw king salmon.

    The state reintroduced them to Southeast, so we can’t blame the feds, although the feds seized management authority shortly thereafter. Their expansion is very slow, unlike wolves that increased at rates up to 40%/year after re-introduction, as they have a lower reproductive rate and a few super-predators that slow their growth. Controlling them geographically would be relatively easy, unlike the continuous and frequently futile counter-insurgency type campaigns against productive, elusive and highly mobile canids. They were exterminated primarily by the Russians who Aleuts brought from western Alaska to hunt them from kayaks, even while under occasional attack from the local Tlingit. They raft up in large numbers and the population generally expands very slowly geographically. Not entirely sure why, I suppose the kelp provides substantial protection from predators and they have to be in an area for awhile to increase the local kelp forest. However, there is increasing interest in limiting their further expansion into economically important fishing areas, as once thoroughly established in a location they tend to drive fisheries on a number of species to economic extinction. Having no fat layer, they rely on their phenomenal fur and a consumption rate of about 25% of their body weight per day, in an order of prey preference that is nearly identical to us. Anyway, they present an interesting policy challenge, very similar and in substantial contrast with wolves, particularly in the level of emotion. Much more will be heard about these debates, no doubt including national attention, in coming years.
    http://juneauempire.com/state/2012-02-06/opposition-selling-otter-pelts-non-natives

  125. avatar Doryfun says:

    Ah, the beauty of the Canadian Tar Sands and this tangled web we live in.

    http://grist.org/list/tar-sands-development-pushes-canada-to-poison-wolves/

    • avatar Salle says:

      Dr Paul Pacquet warned of this several months ago… There was an article in the NY Times, I think it was.

      You know this exposes some of the reason those clowns in N. ID are contesting the critical habitat proposed there… another reason to get to kill wolves by whatever means they desire, most of which are sick and inhumane.

    • avatar Nancy says:

      http://www.dailyyonder.com/keystone-pipeline-hold/2012/01/30/3725

      • “It could cut off the Canada connection and use Baker, Mon. as the pipeline’s starting point, thereby eliminating the need for State Department approval.

      Instead of transporting heavy crude from Canada’s tar sands, the pipeline would tap into the booming Bakken oil fields of Montana and North Dakota. Bakken oil was slated to fill 25 percent of the capacity on the original Keystone XL route, Howard said”

      “Instead of” Just another way of saying “we can’t (as long as oil and utility companies run the government) wean ourselves from fossil fuels”

  126. avatar jon says:

    http://host.madison.com/wsj/news/local/environment/experts-say-species-still-could-thrive-with-wolf-crane-hunts/article_f184c5b4-501d-11e1-87c0-001871e3ce6c.html?mode=comments

    “Ultimately, according to Bob Hofsman, an associate professor of wildlife at the UW-Stevens Point, the debate gets down to why people hunt and what can seem a contradiction between hunters’ professed love for an animal and their willingness to kill it.”

    • avatar Paul says:

      Jon,

      I saw this article this morning. What the article fails to mention is what the wolf hunting bill has in it that will turn people against it. The proposed killing of sandhill cranes is also proving to be quite controversial. Why does the tone of this article make me think of comments made here of “sustainable” and “robust” wolf populations? If 151 is “sustainable” and “robust” in Idaho, I guess Wisconsin thinks that 351 will be the same. The article is a little too pro-wolf/crane hunting, but it is about time this is getting some attention. The “authors” of these bills hoped that they would slip under the radar, but that is proving not to be the case.

      • avatar Salle says:

        Considering your current legislature, who is really surprised that the ugly laws get the clandestine fast track treatment? It’s almost like whomever invented the tea party-and their agenda-studied Idaho legislature for novel approaches to ramrodding bad legislation through with barely a whisper of due process.

  127. avatar cirque guy says:

    Take another look at the lynx trapped in the S-Challis NF. That is a clear violation of take under the prohibitions of the ESA. The threatened status lynx enjoys all the prohibitions of the ESA which includes “attempt to take by trapping”. There is case law that rules when a person intends to take an animal and the animal turns out to be an ESA it is not a defense that the person thought he was taking an otherwise legal animal. (U.S. v Billie) Killing a Florida panther by mistake. How can bobcat trapping be allowed to continue now that it is proven lynx are vulnerable to take and there is no remedy for excluding lynx from the bobcat trap?

    • avatar WM says:

      cirque guy,

      Let’s not get too carried away on interpreting federal ESA law and this one lynx, which apparently was trapped then released unharmed.

      With all due respect, US v. Billie, 667 F. Supp. 1485 (S.D. Fla. 1987), involved a Seminole Indian shooter targeting an ESA protected Florida panther which he apparently and mistakenly believed was something else legal to take, especially on a reservation. It is a district trial court opinion out of the Southern District of Florida, which does not necessarily make it binding law elsewhere (though maybe some would like it to be).

      Additional distinguishing factors include the fact that the Challis lynx was not specifically targeted by the trapper (nor did he have the necessary criminal “general intent” to trap one).

      The broader issue of whether bobcat trapping should be allowed where endangered lynx are likely to appear is certainly a valid one, however.

      • avatar cirque guy says:

        I know the nexus between the Idaho lynx and the Florida panther is a stretch but at least it’s stretching in the right direction. I don’t think the fact that the lynx was released (supposedly unharmed) is relevant because trapping or attempt to trap is specifically defined under the definition of take. The setting and baiting of the trap seems to meet the requirement that he was intending to take an animal and hoped it would be a bobcat but alas he was just as surprised as Chief Billie hence just as guilty?

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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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