Montana FWP chief OKs deal for bison route north from Park

Do we even have say this is the ultimate in tokenism?

FWP chief OKs deal for bison route. By Matthew Brown. Associated Press



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  1. Jon Way Avatar

    They must think we are stupid…Tokenism is a great word for that….

  2. Brian Ertz Avatar

    “By removing cattle from the landscape there, we’re effectively reducing the risk of brucellosis transmissions”

  3. Salle Avatar

    “By removing cattle from the landscape there, we’re effectively reducing the risk of brucellosis transmissions,” she said. “It does give some bison an opportunity to migrate from Yellowstone National Park and onto winter range. And that means those bison will be available to hunters.” (Mel Frost, MTFW&P)

    “No wild-bison-to-cattle brucellosis transmissions have ever been recorded, although there have been at least seven suspected elk-to-cattle transmissions in the last several years.”

    “The disease was first introduced to Yellowstone’s wildlife through livestock brought in by early European settlers.”

    What a bunch of crap.

    First, this only concerns a very small portion of a major portion of the YNP bison population and does NOTHING for the population that migrates out of the park along the Madison River to the west! Aside from the fact that these bison are actually being set up to be killed, by hunters instead. In any case, they still end up DEAD.


    MTFW and P is allowing a statewide special interest group to MANAGE OUR WILDLIFE on FEDERALLY ADMINISTERED PUBLIC LANDS!!!! At a cost of roughly $3Mil of taxpayer dollars a year!!! They get brand new snowmobiles and trucks every season and tear up wild land and sensitive habitat and wildlife with each offensive action on a weekly and sometimes daily basis. Absolute disrespect of life all the way around.

    MTFW and P,
    Give me a $^&%&%$g break. I have a positive IQ, please discontinue your constant insults to my independent cognitive functioning abilities. And get the DoL out of our public lands and wildlife management positions!!!


  4. Rusty Avatar

    Does anyone have the figures as in dollars per buffalo this plan is costing? Let them roam!!!

  5. jerry b Avatar
    jerry b

    And this agreement has the support of the Montana Wildlife Federation and of course the National Wildlife Federation!
    Go figure…….

  6. Robert Hoskins Avatar
    Robert Hoskins

    Regarding the support of the mainline “conservation” groups for this ecologically idiotic and reprehensible deal, we should recognize that there are principled conservation groups, like the Buffalo Field Campaign and the Western Watersheds Project, and capitulatory “conservation” groups, like the Montana and National Wildlife Federations, the Greater Yellowstone Coalition, and Defenders of Wildlife. It has become necessary to refer to the latter as “conservation” groups with a hint of sarcasm and disdain.


  7. Jim Macdonald Avatar

    Those groups not only supported the deal, they helped raise money and paid for it! It’s disgusting that these groups send out national emails, using buffalo to raise money to hurt buffalo.

    This isn’t even tokenism; this deal is actually a step backward.

    It was a pretty easy sell on how bad this deal was to the crowd in Bozeman, but I meet a lot of people on the streets who are shocked to learn the details, having heard what progress is being made for buffalo.

    The only mainline organization that has done any good with this is NRDC; I was so happy to see Louisa Wilcox yesterday; she has some interesting ideas on what we might do that are a little different than some that I have heard – she suggests that we hold our own public hearings on the whole situation.

    All-in-all, one good thing that this Royal Teton Ranch extortion has done is clarify much more clearly what groups around here you can count on and what groups that you can’t.

  8. Virginia Avatar

    I have supported Buffalo Field Campaign monetarily and have stopped my support of GYC. I will now direct my support to NRDC, Buffalo FC and of course, Earthjustice. Thank you to Robert Hoskins for the information regarding these groups. It is difficult to determine who are the real advocates for the animals and the environment!

  9. Jim Macdonald Avatar

    Through the grape vine, I’ve heard that miraculously, the FWP commissioners failed to approve the plan today!

    Two commissioners want to tour the land before they give in to the extortion.

    More coming soon from BFC.

  10. Robert Hoskins Avatar
    Robert Hoskins


    Yes, I just heard from the BFC that FWP Commission consideration of the RTR deal has been postponed. Great news for the moment. I recommend that bison advocates go along on the tour to insure that the Commissioners hear the truth rather than what FWP wants them to hear.

    Louisa Willcox and I have been talking for some time about a NRDC-sponsored public meeting/hearing, where the facts about bison and elk mismanagement would be presented, instead of the falsehoods you get from the agencies and the livestock industry. I would hope that you could be a part of this.


  11. Salle Avatar

    Gawd, I hope that there are some in the agency with the brains to see through the fallacy this plan represents.

  12. Jim Macdonald Avatar


    Louisa mentioned the idea to me on Saturday during our buffalo event.

    I think it’s fantastic and that we should make it happen. It would serve as a true public forum on the issue, it would allow us who are working on the issue to continue to network and build up our communication networks, and it would give us a media platform in which we could leverage.

    She suggested that we do this in Bozeman; I think we’d be happy to help with logistics in particular – the dirty work to make this happen.

  13. Jim Macdonald Avatar

    BFC says that the tour is tomorrow.

  14. Jim Macdonald Avatar

    In fact, the tour is tomorrow at 9:30 AM at Beattie Gulch near the Park line.

    According to the AP, only one of the commissioners will be going on the tour.

    I know that some members from Gallatin Wildlife Association will be there. GWA encourages people to watch the newspapers closely and make comments as appropriate online in the various articles.

  15. Robert Hoskins Avatar
    Robert Hoskins

    The GWA will be going and will make the facts known to Commissioner Doll. Clearly, FWP will be arguing a different set of facts–false facts.

    I believe that a public bison/elk/brucellosis summit or “hearing” held by conservationists themselves–principled conservationists, not the collaborationists at GYC, etc.–would have a great impact upon public opinion in favor of wildlife. It is something that we should begin working on soon. I would be more than happy to talk about the brucellosis fraud as it relates to Wyoming’s elk feedgrounds.


  16. Jim Macdonald Avatar

    Robert, I’ll send an email to Louisa about this in the morning. Perhaps, we can set up a conference call to talk about next steps.

  17. Jim Macdonald Avatar

    Look at this nonsense that GYC has sent out today as an emergency to its lists:

    Emergency: Bison habitat deal needs your presence TODAY!

    A plan that will allow Yellowstone bison to use crucial winter habitat north of the park needs your support TODAY! The state of Montana has completed an agreement with the Royal Teton Ranch (RTR) that will allow limited numbers of bison to travel up to nine miles north of Yellowstone this winter.

    Unfortunately, with one commissioner absent, an FWP Commission vote Thursday ended in a 2-2 tie. However, they have scheduled another vote for 4 p.m. today (Friday).

    Your help is needed! PLEASE take an hour out of your day to show up at either the FWP building in Bozeman (1400 So. 19th Ave.) or at FWP headquarters in Helena (1420 E. 6th Ave.) to voice your support for the RTR bison agreement.

    Below are meeting details:

    Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks Commissioners will meet at 4 p.m. today (Friday) to review their position and vote on the proposed acquisition of 30-year grazing rights from the Royal Teton Ranch. The public is invited to comment to the commissioners, who will be joining by conference call. You can join the meeting in person at either the FWP Region 3 building in Bozeman at 1400 South 19th Ave., or at FWP headquarters at 1420 East 6th Ave. in Helena.

    Suggested Talking Points:
    1) The Royal Teton Ranch Agreement will provide bison needed winter habitat.
    2) RTR is a positive step forward and one that FWP should support.

    For more information on the RTR agreement, check out the following link:

    You can also contact Amy McNamara at GYC (406-581-7962) or Tim Stevens at NPCA, (406-222-1567).

    Thanks for your support for Yellowstone bison!

  18. Jim Macdonald Avatar

    Well, today it passed 4-0.

    Oh well – was surprised it even got a day of reprieve.


  19. Robert Hoskins Avatar
    Robert Hoskins

    At a brucellosis workshop sponsored by the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and various livestock groups and agencies this past Monday and Tuesday in Billings, a workshop to which conservationists and hunters were NOT invited until myself and Glenn Hockett of the Gallatin Wildlife Assocition forced invitations for ourselves–it was a public meeting because of the presence of government agencies, so they couldn’t keep us out, although they did call the cops–Amy McNamara (GYC) and Tim Stevens (NPCA) showed up but said absolutely nothing for either bison and elk. They were like malevolent ghosts whose presence was intended to neutralize the principled presence of me and Glenn. Only Glenn and I spoke up for bison and elk against the demands of the livestock industry for more intensive brucellosis “management” of wildlife.

    The above noted press release from GYC and NPCA in support of the RTR deal with the usual lies about alleged benefits for bison doesn’t surprise me. I gave up on these capitulatory “conservation” groups long ago. I think principled conservationists and conservation groups ought to be more forthright in calling GYC, NPCA, Defenders, and like groups on the extraordinary damage they do to wildlife and wildlife conservation.


  20. Jim Macdonald Avatar


    I’ve had the experience you are talking about with GYC lurking in the room at an event. To my surprise, Rep. Phillips called them out on it during the meeting and asked them point blank whether they were going to support the bill GWA has been working on and that he drafted. They simply mumbled and said that they didn’t have a position on it yet.

    Anyhow, I am thankful for both you and Glenn, as well as Joe Gutkoski and Jim Bailey.

    Long before I ended up in Bozeman, I’ve been noticing with admiration and interest in all you were doing for wildlife, and in particular the buffalo. If we are going to be calling out the devils in our midst, it’s also good to raise up those truly working their hearts out – thank you.

  21. Salle Avatar


    You’re GOOD.


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Ralph Maughan