News Release: ID Fish and Game commission adopts wolf hunting rules

Here is the news release from the Idaho Fish and Game Commission on their wolf hunt decision.

Notice that they could start their second year of “wolf management” on Jan. 1 by merely extending the wolf hunt season and reduce their newly lowered population minimum, even further.

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Date: May 22, 2008
Contact: Ed Mitchell

f&g commission adopts wolf hunting rules

The Idaho Fish and Game Commission Thursday, May 22, adopted the first regulated hunting season on gray wolves in the state’s history

The commission, during its May meeting, set a wolf population goal of 518 wolves, and adopted hunting seasons, limits and rules for the 2008 hunting season.

The season would be open from September 15 in the backcountry and from October 1 in all remaining areas and run through December 31. The commission would review results in November to consider extending the season if limits are not being met.

A hunter can kill one wolf with a valid 2008 hunting license and wolf tag.

“I think we made history today,” Fish and Game Director Cal Groen said. “We must manage this species; they are well beyond recovered.”

The wolf hunt rules are based on the Idaho Wolf Population Management Plan, approved by commissioners in an early March meeting. The gray wolf in the Northern Rocky Mountains was removed from the endangered species list in late March. The plan calls for managing wolves at a population level of between 2005-2007 levels (518-732) wolves for the first five years following delisting.

The estimated population at the end of 2007 was 732 wolves, with an estimated 20 to 30 percent annual growth rate. Adding this years expected pups, that number would be more than 1,000 wolves before hunting season would start.

Commissioners adopted a wolf population goal of the level from 2005, which was about 518 wolves.

Fish and Game rules call for a total statewide mortality limit, including harvest from the Nez Perce Tribe, of about 428 wolves in 2008, which includes all reported wolf kills – from natural causes, accidents, wolf predation control actions and hunter kills. If the limit is reached it would result in an estimated end-of-year population of fewer than 550 wolves.

Hunting will be managed in 12 zones. Hunting intensity would vary with levels of conflict between wolves and livestock or game animals. But when the statewide mortality limit is reached, all hunting would stop. When limits in individual zones are reached, hunting in those zones would stop.

Additional rules include a mandatory report within 72 hours and check-in within 10 days of killing a wolf, and no trapping, electronic devices, bait or dogs will be allowed in the first year. Weapons restrictions are the same as for deer.

Fish and Game expects to release season and rules brochures to the public in July.



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  1. john weis Avatar
    john weis

    “”“We must manage this species; they are well beyond recovered.”””

    Wonder what the hell they did before the white man crossed the plains with his fire stick.

  2. timz Avatar

    On May 15 timz posted.
    “I hate to be cynical but does anyone believe these guys haven’t already made up their minds and could care less what anyone’s comments are? They’re just going thru the mothions because they have too.”
    I’m not one to say I told you so but… They wouldn’t even listen to their own biologists.

  3. Lynne Stone Avatar
    Lynne Stone

    Tim – I think you are absolutely right that the Game Commissioners had the decision made. The only people they are going to listen to are the anti-wolf people like big game outfitters, trophy hunters, and ranchers.

    But when we comment we are speaking out on behalf of wolves, showing our support for wolves, and if wolf supporters don’t show up, or write, then the rest of the world and the media would assume we don’t care. At least that’s my take.

  4. timz Avatar

    Lynn your right, I wasn’t saying we should give up the fight just expressing my ever-growing distain for politicians and the puppets they use to impose their will.

  5. Moose Avatar

    So are they going assume there are 1,000 wolves…and then plan on killing up to 482? Will the Feds check the numbers?

  6. Maska Avatar

    Does anyone know what sort of numbers they plan to factor in to account for poaching? I’ve been told by old hands in the Southwest that poaching of game species is much greater than generally assumed in game department figures. Is that likely to be the case in Idaho? And is it even more likely in the case of predators like wolves?

  7. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    There are going to be all kinds of number games played. You can see it already by them counting this year’s pups and saying there are 1000 wolves in Idaho.

    The count is supposed to be on Dec. 31 of each year.

  8. Larry Thorngren Avatar

    I testified at the IDFG commissioners meeting in Jerome Wednesday night, along with four or five other moderates on wolf hunting. It was pretty lonesome, as most of the testimony was from members of the outfitters and guides association(who think that all Idaho elk belong to them) and anti-wolf advocates that said: “anyone who wanted wolves in Idaho were terrorists” and that “Idaho children waiting for school buses were at risk from wolf attacks.”
    Senate candidate “Shooter bull” Rammell wanted the commission to hurry and “shoot as many wolves from the air as possible, before the relisting lawsuit could possibly take effect”.
    If you want wolves protected in Idaho, you need to be willing to show up and be counted. To reporters and the commission, it looked like anti wolf people far outnumber wolf advocates in Idaho.
    I emphasized treating the wolves as least well as we treat bears and cougars, which means you hunt them only when their pelts are prime and you don’t hunt them when they have young.
    The season that the commisioners came up with is far shorter and starts later, than the “shoot them all year round” seasons that many at the meeting advocated. I would like to think that my testimony and photos, along with the testimony of other more moderate voices present, may have helped the commisioners arrive at the shorter season.
    The IDFG commission needs to see and hear more pro wolf folks at their meetings. Ron Gillette and members of his anti-wolf group never miss one. Sun Valley and Ketchum are only a one hour drive from Jerome and not even one pro-wolf person from that area showed up to testify.

  9. Monty Avatar

    Game Director, Cal Groen, asserts that: “We must manage this species, they are well beyond recovered”. Although the following is a bit off of the subject, I wish humanity would acknowledge that “humans are well beyond recovered” and support more human family planning. Currently there are about 300,000,000 American’s verses 3500 wolves in the lower 48.

  10. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    You are right, Larry, although the folks in Boise and the Wood River Valley where probably convinced from the last round of hearings that their opinions wouldn’t count (whether true or not).

    A wider variety of folks need to start showing up at Fish and Game Commission meetings, and think there needs to be a national movement as well as one in Idaho to set qualifications to sit on the commission. Now they are just political appointments (read about Idaho’s commissioners. Perhaps 2 have some real expertise).

  11. TPageCO Avatar

    Public meetings are for show – whether one chooses to be a part of that show is up to you. In all my years of going to public input meetings, I never found that 2 minutes of my time really changed things. Do you really think that Cal Groen didn’t know what Gillette, Rammell and those other guys would say? Or for that matter what the pro-wolf folks would say? I suspect he finds public input sessions a pretty useless activity.

    What works better, I think, is calling fish and game folks during the work hours, or calling the commissioners. They’re certainly more candid and willing to listen this way, at the very least. Sure, I submitted my comments like most folks here, and of course they were largely ignored, but to say that it would have helped for me to go to the Jerome meeting is debatable. I’ve found that working on the ground with the local officers/staff is the absolute best way to deal with F&G – at least in CO and MT, and I suspect the same thing works here in Idaho.

  12. Larry Thorngren Avatar

    when I arrived at the Jerome meeting, Ron Gillette was being interviewed at the door by one of the local reporters. His strident anti- wolf message got out to the public.
    When the IDFG commissioners see 90 anti- wolf people at their meeting and only 5 or 6 pro- wolf folks, it gives them the cover to start shooting wolves. It also makes the media wonder if there are any pro-wolf folks in Idaho. If there had been 200 wolf watchers demanding wolf watching corridors, and applauding each other as they testified, maybe they would have got some non-hunting areas and some positive media coverage.
    If wolf advocates want wolves protected, they need to show up at every meeting and say so, and say it again and again and again.
    I gave each commission member a small framed photograph of a black wolf and asked them to remember that some of us like live wolves and that wildlife watchers outnumber hunters about 4 to 1. It would have been more effective if wolf advocates had outnumbered Ron Gillette and friends by 4 to 1 at the meeting.
    The wolf introduction has been an outstanding success, are you going to lose it all by being no-shows? I am starting to think that wolf advocates are all howl and no bite.

  13. JB Avatar

    TPageCo: You are right, these meetings are for show and they way IDF&G is conducting them (i.e. their selection of locations) along with the statements they’ve made, leave little doubt that their intent is not to manage for a sustainable wolf population.

    FYI: When I was in Utah the DWR conducted a series of such meetings to determine support/opposition to wolves. They found that 80% of attendees identified “do not allow wolves in Utah” as one of their top 3 priorities. In contrast, a survey conducted at the same time using probabilistic sampling found that more than 50% agreed with the item “I would like to see wolves in Utah.”

    From my perspective, such open forums are really only useful for identifying the people with the most extreme positions.

  14. timz Avatar

    Larry I have to disagree with you, the media here in Idaho seems to love giving the anti-wolf loud mouths much more coverage, they make “better” news. I have not seen one positive news story about wolves in either the Statesman or local TV, but dozens about wolves killing dogs, cattle,sheep etc. The Statesman had quite a bit to say about the Jerome meeting, I never read a word about the Boise meeting in their rag. Based on the Jerome article you wouldn’t know a single pro wolf person was there. Why was Gilette interviewed and not yourself? He makes a better story I suppose.

  15. Brian Ertz Avatar

    Larry is absolutely right. casting aside these meetings as insignificant is not right.

    i’ve attended every meeting i can, too frequently i’m the lone wolf-advocate sitting in the corner with my camera. do you know how much more difficult it is for those of us willing to show to say our piece when you’ve got a room full of whiners staring you down ? show up at the meetings.

    at the meeting in Boise, Nadeau remarked at how few folks showed up (of course, the announcement was 4 days prior and after the official announcement publicized showing no Boise meeting) and said that they’re managing with that in mind.

    i also attended the meeting in Hailey last winter, where a large room packed full of wolf advocates expressed their discontent with the plan’s anti-science development, cheered each-other on, and everyone felt uplifted after the meeting. i watched it shake them up – they were cornered with question after question citing the best available science, and saw how it brought a community of people together – the meeting hit the news and i am convinced that it made a difference in the minds of the managers. they didn’t go back – we know that’s on purpose. imagine if they were confronted with that at more of these other meetings.

    we’ve got people busting their ass hazing wolves to make them fearful of humans, grinding at the paperwork readying the lawsuit, grinding away at the paperwork appealing allotment decisions, monitoring public lands collecting every last bit of evidence of abuse to shut down and lessen livestock’s introduction of conflict, compiling and making the news, and so much more ~ all to protect these wolves and keep this thing going. and when it comes to showing up at the meetings, we’ve got scores of folk claiming “they won’t listen anyway” keeping them, and potentially others exposed to such non-sense, at home.

    justifications for non-attendance like “they don’t listen anyway” are nice ways of sidestepping the responsibility, given what folk know, to confront this absurd management and be counted. these people need to see your eyes and hear your voice.

  16. sal Avatar

    The non-attendance was reassured by purposely announcing meetings really late or even AFTER they occurred. This is the same strategy they used back in 2001 at that Salmon hearing that I attended. Tim Sundles came clean at that one. Ron Gillette instantly offered him financial backing for his legal defense. There was a considerable number of sidearms in the room where a US Senator and Cabinet advisor where speaking ~ only three had badges on the chests of the wearers.

    Next time I saw Sundles and Gillette in the same room together, Sundles had on a silk suit, had had a facial and manicure, and was testifying about how wolves attack humans in Idaho during a legislative committee hearing in Boise. Funny, the camera folks from Peter Jennings’ misled and misrepresenting documentary on wolves that aired about a year later were there too. A whole wall of them. What they used from that footage was an image of the line of participants waiting to enter the courtroom, I was in the middle of the shot, while a monologue ran over the scene saying that all these people in the line were representative of the majority of Idahoans who objected to wolf reintroduction.

    See how that all goes?

    That’s why MORE PEOPLE have to show up at these things and SAY SOMETHING. THAT”S WHAT A DEMOCRACY IS ALL ABOUT AND HOW IT WORKS.

    Don’t just say something in the hearing, speak to the media people that are there and TELL them what you want them to hear and pay attention to (like real scientific indicators and how these 18th century clowns are loosing the battle and that’s why the scream that the sky is falling. They have no documentation to prove their claims.) Make the media dig some of that crap up if they’re going to report it. Call their bluff. They won’t be able to find valid evidence to support any of the swill these guys are claiming.

    Don’t let the media put words in your mouths.

  17. timz Avatar

    I have gone several rounds with a local TV news director and twice with the editors at the Statesman about their news coverage when it comes to wolves. My experience is they are not interested in wolf stories unless it involves wolves killing something and interviewing some hayseed that talks about how people will be their next dinner. And they are definately not interested in any facts or doing any research. I asked the TV guy, after their lead story on one occasion was a wolf killed a cow near Sweet, “why no stories when coyotes kill livestock or a pet?” His answer and I quote “I didn’t know coyotes killed livestock.” This was the head of the news department at a Boise television station.

  18. TPageCO Avatar

    I’m not saying “they don’t listen anyway”. What I wrote was that I’ve had more success outside of public forums. I’ve put my two minutes in many many times. Sometimes the room was not in my favor and sometimes it was. I don’t think it matters in the long run how many people come to the meetings, except maybe for media purposes. Talking with F&G over time, and with county commissioners, and other politicos, when they are not sitting in front of the public worried about what some writer will put in the paper is more effective.

    I applaud all the folks out there hazing, or dealing with allotments or whatever, but there are lots of ways to get things accomplished. Public meeting attendance is not one I find very important. Call it shirking responsibility if you will, but I’ll disagree.

  19. Larry Thorngren Avatar

    The next IDFG commission meeting on wolves will address using electronic calls(Wolf Howls) to locate and kill wolves. Radio receivers tuned to radio collar frequencies will also be proposed, as will using dogs to decoy wolves in close enough to shoot. Trapping seasons on wolves and longer hunting seasons will also be proposed. (One of the commisioners mentioned these to me as things he thought would be needed to reduce wolf numbers, because he feels wolves will be very hard to hunt.)
    If these measures fail to reduce wolves enough to satisfy the anti-wolf crowd, look for authorization by the commission to use poison and shooting from helicopters to kill wolves.
    If the same ratio or wolf-haters to wolf advocates show up at future meetings, all of these proposals will become standard operating policy.
    Wolf numbers will be reduced and maintained at the bare minimum to ward off relisting.

  20. Catbestland Avatar

    I hope that all of this information coming out of these meetings will be presented at hearing for preliminary injunction on the 29th. There can be no doubt as to the intention of the state management plans. It is not in the best interest of wildlife or wildlife enthusiasts.

  21. JB Avatar

    To clarify my comments: (1) I think these forums are extremely biased in favor of organized groups and vocal curmudgeons; (2) thus, they are a bad way to collect data about people’s views, and (3) public forums do little for the agency conducting them–managers have to sit around and listen to people bitch; moreover, if the meeting is regarding something controversial (e.g. wolves), then you run the risk of further inflaming the issue.

  22. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    The Idaho media are mostly terrible, and in the 1990s they played a major role in spreading the militia craziness by playing these people up like they do Ron Gillette now.

    They finally changed when the militia threatened to shoot the state legislators.

    Recently, the day after Ron Gillette attacked Lynne Stone, the Idaho Falls station, channel 8 did a feature on him.

    One good newspaper is the Pocatello paper, the Idaho State Journal, which has run editorial after editorial criticizing Otter, the state wolf plan, etc. Unfortunately, their editorials are never on-line.

  23. Brian Ertz Avatar

    JB – inflaming the issue is not always bad – especially when you’ve got a vehicle moving in the wrong direction. that’s what activism is.

    facts don’t move people. that’s a fact. they’ve already disassembled the space for objective decision-making, and replaced it with politicized absurdity. it’s not enough to pretend like the way that we maintain legitimacy among ourselves is the same way to build it in enrolling others to move.

    right now, the commission has public cover with these die-hard anti-wolfers and the media that cover them in these meetings. you can’t rock that boat at home, nor with pleasant private conversation with agency folk. it’s got to be public – that’s what makes it move.

    It is not enough to understand the natural world. The point is to defend and preserve it.

    – Edward Abbey

  24. TPageCO Avatar

    It’s a long way from fair chase hunting to aerial gunning and poison. Look at what’s happened in AK with the aerial gunning efforts. I don’t think our attendance at public meetings is going to be the key to stopping these kinds of efforts, and I really question whether they would ever happen. Electronic calls maybe. Dogs as decoys? I can’t see some houndsman who has spent hours training his dogs being very enthused to put them up as bait. Most (all?) of the alternative control methods are likely outside F&G management. I can’t imagine support for poisoning campaigns, even here in Idaho. The first dog that gets killed – people will go ballistic.

    If the commission’s goal is to maintain the bare minimum…I keep thinking that in a couple years they’ll realize the risk of reverting to federal management, once they stop getting so many calls from the anti-wolf crew, and keep enough around to avoid that from happening. Beyond that, it’s going to be a long slow slog to build cultural acceptance over time.

  25. SmokyMtMan Avatar

    Look at the motivation: anti-wolfies have a monetary interest in reducing wolves.

    The wolf lovers are only motivated by their respect and fondness for the wolf.

    At the meetings, it is fairly clear which motivates more, isn’t it?

    And the pro-wolfies outnumber the anti-wolfies, yet at the meetings it is a clear blow-out for the anti-wolfies.

    Money is the ultimate motivator, no matter who you are.

  26. Layton Avatar

    Just curious there Smokey,

    I’m pretty avowed what YOU would call anti-wolf, I want some control put on the puppies before there are a million of them.

    I don’t feel that I have ANY “monetary interest” at all in the whole thing — could you take a minute and explain that to me??

    Most of the folks that I know who are “antis” are the same as I am. Our wives would prefer that there weren’t any reason for us to spend more time and $$ in the woods, I really don’t understand your position here.

  27. Buffaloed Avatar

    Yeah right Layton,

    Why in the hell would you ever think there could be a million of them? I know you are exaggerating but you come off like Gillett there. You do understand that wolf densities are regulated by prey density and inter-pack rivalry don’t you? Or do you think that they are like rabbits?

  28. Catbestland Avatar

    Check out this thread posted yesterday. Do you think if we give Nature enough time she might figure things out on her own?
    Wisconsin wolf population stops growing
    May 23, 2008 — Ralph Maughan

  29. Mike Ice Avatar
    Mike Ice

    Layton, I am assuming that you are “anti wolf” by your post. If you don’t have a “monetary interest” then what is your interest. And what do wolves have to do with you spending more time and $$ in the woods??? If anyone is not making sense…

  30. Zen Avatar

    Welcome back Layton.

    I posted a pretty good post but I just don’t care to get into this argument which is much like ranting. It won’t save the wolves, it won’t save the nature most of us enjoy. Let’s all buy tags and hang them on the walls. Let’s all quit eating meat and buying gas. Let’s hit ’em where it hurts and ignore the trolls.
    We can’t stop the big money and the ranchers / politicians. We need to spend our energies in more useful ways. That’s how we can save wildlife. If you have a problem with wolves killing your livestock than raise your prices, I want steak but I will pay more because I also want to be able to go and see wolf sign or maybe get a photo. That’s the right I want. They have a right to live, everything that is born does. If you say it doesn’t then what makes you God?

  31. Buffaloed Avatar


    There is a problem with your logic about buying up the tags. IDFG probably has no intention of limiting the number of tags. If you buy a wolf tag you are supporting IDFG and this F’d-up, ignore the biologists recommendations, kill-em-all, hunt. If they were to limit the number of tags and saw that the tags weren’t being filled then they would just increase the number of tags available.

    The ranchers will never accept wolves that is why ranchers should lose the permission to graze on public lands. Even if ranching still occurs on private lands there would still be many fewer cattle and sheep on the public lands stealing forage and habitat from the elk, deer, pronghorn, buffalo, bighorn sheep, other wildlife, and by extension wolves and other predators which depend on the prey that would increase without cattle and sheep.

  32. Layton Avatar

    OK, in the order from whence they came.

    Yes, I do kind of feel that they are “like rabbits”. The newest population figures would indicate another year of 20% growth — that’s rather “rabbitlike” to me. They ARE canines aren’t they??

    Just how many more years of uncontrolled growth do we need to give them before this “leveling off” happens?? And at what expense to all the other game in the three states?? They have had about 14 years of Uncle Sugar’s protection now, don’t you really think it’s time for them to try it on their own?? Or will you EVER think that??

    You don’t have to “assume” that I’m anti-wolf — if being in favor of some measure of control is anti, then I am. More time and more $$ in the woods because maybe I will have a chance to help the other animals out a bit, I haven’t decided yet. I haven’t carried a rifle in the woods for many years, but I might start again

    Your “pretty good post” confuses me, but I do see a couple of things.

    First, I don’t have any livestock for the wolves to kill, only a couple of dogs, and I would guarantee that the wolves won’t get close to them.

    You say “They have a right to live, everything that is born does. If you say it doesn’t then what makes you God?

    I would ask you why the deer and elk that die to feed these wolves don’t have the same right?? Is it their PRIVELIGE to die to feed the wolves so you can “get a photo”?? Give me a break!!

    If you want to “see some wolf sign” get out in the woods most anywhere North of McCall, you shouldn’t have much trouble finding some.

  33. Buffaloed Avatar

    Since when did rabbits kill each other for territorial reasons?

  34. Catbestland Avatar

    Wolves need protection as long as the prevailing mentality towards them is stuck in the 19th century. Nature is far better at determining the balance of wildlife populations than man. Wolves have not caused the extinction of any species. Only man has done that. The instant reversion to the kill ’em all attitude has proven that the three states are not ready to manage wolves on their own. When the states come up with a plan that is based on science and not on greed over percieved threatened profits of the livestock and outfitting industries, or hatred of a symbol of imagined government interference, then the states will be ready to manage on their own.

  35. JB Avatar

    C’mon, people. Most of the “pros” and “antis” who post here want the same thing–a sustainable wolf population. We just need a reasonable management plan to get there. As soon as WY and ID pull there thumbs out of their asses we can all have a beer and say hooray.

  36. Mike Ice Avatar
    Mike Ice

    Layton, being in favor of control is not anti wolf. If a wolf comes on your private property and starts killing livestock and or pets, shoot it. Now grazing livestock on public land is a different situation in my mind. First, its one of the biggest scams out there and its ruining the western ecosystem and second ranchers allowed to graze livestock on public land should do so at their own risk. Its not their land and the wildlife residing there is not theirs to manage for personal gain. I believe we should have a trophy hunt for wolves just like the mountain lion, not hunt them like “vermin.” Ya know, Ive been reading these blogs for quite awhile now and it seems to me that the pro wolf people are trying to meet somewhere in the middle and the anit wolf people are not. Look at Ron Gillette, this guy is no where near the middle, he hates wolves and anybody who supports them and he wants them eliminated, period. What is his reason? Greed, Hate, Ignorance? Here’s and idea, lets all meet in the middle, wolves can co-exist with ranchers and hunters. Look at the upper mid-west. So to the anti wolf people, share!

  37. Layton Avatar


    “When the states come up with a plan that is based on science and not on greed over perceived threatened profits of the livestock and outfitting industries, or hatred of a symbol of imagined government interference, then the states will be ready to manage on their own.”

    I’m curious, what would such a plan — that you could go along with — look like??

    It just seems to me that ANY plan that includes killing even one wolf doesn’t “measure up” with the “for wolves” folks.


    “Ya know, Ive been reading these blogs for quite awhile now and it seems to me that the pro wolf people are trying to meet somewhere in the middle and the anit wolf people are not.”

    That’s kind of funny, first because you are seeing something that I am not and I REALLY read this blog.

    Like I said up above, any plan that I see proposed that entails killing EVEN ONE wolf, is met with out and out disapproval by the wolf faction. Secondly, you cite Ron Gillett as (evidently) a “typical” example of the other side. I don’t think so!!!

    As far as the public land ranching goes —— well, in places other than this blog, there are two sides to that story too!

  38. Catbestland Avatar

    It would look like a plan based on healthy ecosystems and continued bio-diversity for future generations. It would not be based on maintaining unnaturally high single species populations like elk, simply to ensure ample profits for the outfitting industry. Nor would it be based on securing predator free public lands that serve as private livestock industry meal tickets. The plan would be based on securing the future of wildlife populations so that our generation will be viewed as the ones who protected our nation’s wildlife heritage rather than the ones who stole it.

  39. Mike Ice Avatar
    Mike Ice

    Layton, well first of all this is a “wildlife” blog and people on this site are going to side with conservation. I bet if I go over to some ranchers blog you would see the other side. Yea there are some “enviros” that dont even want one wolf killed, but if you listen to most pro wolf people they agree that the species needs to be controlled just like the mountain lion. So I disagree with you and you make my point, thanks. Ron Gillette may be on the extreme side of the issue but my personal experience with small western town mentality is the three S’s.

  40. Layton Avatar

    Yes Cat,

    I KNOW that bit of propaganda, and I’ve also heard all of the anti ranching industry and outfitter prattle. Yes, I know, it’s a big anti green conspiracy brought out by the rabidly anti environmental, big oil loving, anti democratic, anti personal rights, republican, current administration.

    But what would it LOOK like.

    Would it be a plan that allowed wolves to be killed if they became to numerous?? Is there any such thing as to numerous in your plan?? Does it have to be a “self leveling” population that is only regulated by natures whims and a lack of prey?? Do we need human populations to stay away from areas where wolves reign supreme?? Are there any provisions in this plan for “management” of wolves the way other animal species are managed, or do they just do as they please??

    “Healthy ecosystems” and “biodiversity” are really nice sounding words, but are there any PRACTICAL provisions in this plan?? Provisions that take into account that we are not in the 18th or 19th century anymore — provisions that account for human populations over the few thousand that lived west of the Mississippi in those times??

    Who defines “unnaturally high” levels of which species — the “pro” or the “anti” side?? Or should we vote on it?? That should make things pretty scientific.


    Thanks for a somewhat realistic viewpoint, it’s kind of refreshing — we can argue a bit about Wyoming’s and Idaho’s “thumbs” but I really think that we could come to some sort of a compromise that might actually work.

  41. Layton Avatar


    I guess we were talking (typing?) at the same time.

    ” Ron Gillette may be on the extreme side of the issue but my personal experience with small western town mentality is the three S’s.”

    Just FYI, Ron Gillett and Lynne Stone are from the same “small western town” does that put just a teensy, weensy hole in your theory??

    (Sorry Lynne, I couldn’t resist it 8) )

  42. Catbestland Avatar

    What would be wrong with setting aside some public lands that truly ARE wilderness area and let Nature do the management? And more than just Yellowstone. This would require that livestock be removed from these lands. We do need human populations to stay away from areas where NATURE reigns supreme. I don’t believe anyone on the pro-wolf side wishes to see that wolves reign supreme. We seek only a balance. Man has mucked up enough of the earth. Let there be some part of it that the Creator can manage according to his manual. Funny you mention PRACTICAL provisions. Some of the definitions for practical are: useful, aware of realities and virtual, all of which need to apply to this plan which MUST include considerations for everyone, not just the above mentioned industries. It is not useful to design a plan that will benefit only a small segment of the population. The reality is that everyone will suffer in the end if Nature’s interest are ignored. We will end up with compromised ecosystems that will benefit no one so that a few can profit. You may argue that the reality is that the people and cattle are here. True, but the people that put the cattle on public lands ignore and disrespect the realities of Nature. Hoiw long do you think we can disrespect Nature and get away with it?
    IF wolves start prowling the streets looking for children at bus stops then by all means, shoot them. IF they start raiding private farms and killing livestock where methods of deterence have failed, then yes, shoot them. But first we owe it to Nature to try to get along with her.

  43. Layton Avatar


    For once I could agree with most of you last comment.

    But this part “You may argue that the reality is that the people and cattle are here. True, but the people that put the cattle on public lands ignore and disrespect the realities of Nature”

    I the people are here, true, not much we can do about that without some MAJOR changes!!

    The cows?? Them, and their presence at the particular moment could be adjusted somewhat — depends on what is REALLY necessary.

    I don’t know if you know it or not, but I spend my summers working for that nastiest of all entities, the US Forest Service. Sure, I see some abuses — BUT — and it’s a BIG but, all of these abuses that people here seem to think run rampant are just NOT there in the quantities that they would have you believe.

    Do you look at the range every year?? I don’t know. I do look at it. Sure, I see the pictures that are displayed very prominently here each year — you’ve seen them to. They point out where the “bad guys” mess things up. But the question I ask each time I see them is “what did that land look like in the spring?”

    Most of those pictures are taken of land that has been grazed for dozens of years. Each spring it looks like it has barely been touched. The grasses and forbes mostly (note, I said mostly) renew themselves each year.

    As to your question on setting aside wilderness, I see nothing wrong with some set aside land. However, I DO see a problem with some of the “roadless area” studies that take land people have been using for many years, that have existing roads all over it, and declaring them somehow “roadless”. Taint true!!

  44. Catbestland Avatar

    What I see when I hike the high country of Colorado is devestation of the land wreaked by decades of mismanagement by cattle interest. And even on my own land which was once heavily grazed, we are still fighting the negative effects. I’m just saying give Nature a chance. I don’t think man can manage anything properly, even himself. One of my favorite scriptures reads:
    “All this I have seen and there was an applying of my heart to every work that has been done under the sun, (during) the time that man has dominated man to his injury.” I think this applies to man’s treatment of Nature as well. Let’s give some of this planet back to Nature and see how she does.

  45. Mike Avatar

    Layton, “Just FYI, Ron Gillett and Lynne Stone are from the same “small western town” does that put just a teensy, weensy hole in your theory??” No I dont think so, but you are right, I shouldn’t stereotype. I think Ms Stone is an exception. And you keep fitting in to my stereotype with your inability to see the other side. Let me challenge you, I do believe that wolves should be hunted as trophy animals and have limited predator control, now its your turn to prove my stereotype wrong.

  46. Mike Ice Avatar
    Mike Ice

    Thats what I thought.

  47. Zen Avatar

    Sorry, I meant a good post that I deleted because I was ranting.

    We all need to agree to disagree. On this issue I just hope that we can all live together and not have to be an endangered species like the wolf or the polar bear. In the end the roaches and the rats will win.


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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Ralph Maughan