Exposure of "predator derby" goes viral, Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife takes down dead coyote photos

Photography web site gives exposure to killing contest, provokes big reaction-

The “predator derby” held annually by Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife is not well known outside of its participants. I don’t know about it until someone brought it up in comments. One web site, however, really took note of it.

A story at iamidaho.deviantart.com about Sportsmen for Fish and Wildife’s carnivore-killing contest apparently went viral. As a result SFW has taken down their photos of dead carnivores killed in a “predator derby” and Nikon has withdrawn their apparent sponsorship of SFW’s webpage. However, the photos are still up at http://iamidaho.deviantart.com/

See more at  http://iamidaho.deviantart.com/journal/28470288/#comments.

The event to see who can kill the most “predators” is still planned for the Pocatello area on Nov. 27th – 28th. For more information on the event and others in Idaho, go to http://www.sfwidaho.org/SFW/Idaho_Predator_Derby.html.

We had no idea this effort to widen knowledge of the event was going on. It certainly shows the power of the web to make folks aware.





  1. Devin Avatar

    This is modern grassroots movement at its finest. Before the advent of fast paced technology, I have little doubt that the event would have continued without change or protest. The youth (DeviantART is largely dominated by ages 16-30) of the site really made an effort to make themselves heard and got the word out quickly.

    I applaud everyone that made an effort on this and everyone that makes future efforts to prevent this type of reckless killing.

  2. kt Avatar

    These folks (Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife) ARE the current Idaho Fish and Game Commission. Nate Helm of SFW, a former Larry Craig staffer, has the Commissioner boys at his beck and call.

    The rest of the predators of the state pretty much get treated like “derby” victims, too. None of it stands a chance of changing until Butch Otter goes away.

  3. Jennifer Avatar

    Great job, Nathan! Way to take action and get people motivated to challenge the unscientific, archaic policies of predator “control”. Hopefully at least a few of those derby participants and organizers now know the whole world is watching.

  4. Mike Avatar

    Outstanding news! Glad to see Nikon pull out of this shameful event.

    These people do more damage to hunting than PETA ever will.

  5. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    First. This is outstanding news. Sportsmen for (some) fish and (some) wildlife is repugnant.

    an aside: this same organisation sponsored our very own fish and game commission on a little vacation this past spring to Utah ostensibly to look at habitat improvement projects. What else was conversed would be far more interesting but will never be revealed IMO

  6. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    I would also like to encourage the same sort of effort be directed at the Idaho fish and game commission who have at least one member that belongs to this (non)sportsman organization.

  7. nabeki Avatar

    Great to see we can make a difference!! I’ve been posting about this as well. Glad to see NIKON made the right decision. The light of day needs to shine on these issues so people can speak out!

    Posted November 21, 2009

    SFW-Idaho Predator Derby
    November 19, 2009
    Here are the latest alerts for the Predator Derby and the Idaho Wolf Hunt Extension

    Take Action For Wolves

  8. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    a bit more on the derby:
    Sean Mottishaw, the director of the Pocatello chapter of Sportsman for Fish and Wildlife.

    Sean’s thoughts on wolf hunting;”I have heard that the best way to call a wolf is to go to the local orphanage, grab a baby with real strong lungs, duct tape it to a tree and use that for the call. It supposedly brings the wolves a running! Don’t tell the wolf lovers though, it would ruin their mythological belief that wolves are the “gods” of public lands and are here to help mankind.”
    Sean’s thoughts on what to do with the kill; ” By the way, I haven’t talked to the local Chinese Buffet yet, but they might take any unwanted meat.”
    This is the organization that one of Idaho’s fish and game commissioners’ belong to.
    Birds of a feather??
    Yes I have documented this, have hard copies and another poster on this board can back me up here. I am not making this up.
    here is Mr. Mottishaw”s contact info as posted on the official SFW website: Sean Mottishaw-208-221-7246
    As I said, repugnant

  9. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    They still have some thumbnails up

  10. JW Avatar

    Why would Nikon ever have remotely supported that. that makes no sense.
    And what an oxymoron: Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife.

  11. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    The Nikon Optics group supports quite a few different events around the country and the world, it is not the Nikon Camera group, it is the division the sells spotting scopes, binoculars and rifle scopes..

  12. JW Avatar

    I have always thought of a racially unjust (or simply racist) overtone to these predator hunts. Kill for hate…
    Some of that man’s comment on your post seem to back it up.

  13. Mike Avatar

    Yeah that’s why it’s great Nikon pulled out. They don’t want to be associated with this garbage.

  14. Aaron M.C. Avatar

    Its a real shame. Its horrible they call that a sport. I just don’t think you should make a game out of such things.

  15. Jay Avatar

    “Sportsmen” are NOT hunters, its explicity stated right there in the title they use for themselves. Its “sport”: like any sport, its competition to score the most points (see the scoring system for their cave man derby), or to get the largest deer or elk that scores the highest on their antler rating system. In fact, when you talk to some of these “sportsmen”, they often times don’t even refer to the animal as an animal (be it deer or elk), just a score (“I passed on a 325, just wasn’t big enough…”). and these are the same people that demonize wolves for “sport killing”. If it weren’t so disgustingly pathetic it would almost be funny. Unfortunately, when people hear the term “sportsmen”, they associate hunters in that same category, but I for one want nothing to do with these blights on what is otherwise an honorable tradition participated in by many people that care about wildlife, not just the ones that grow horns or antlers, or are fun to shoot. Hunters need to come up with an organization to counter the image these clowns portray of what hunting is really all about.

  16. Richie,NJ Avatar

    I am sorry for feeling this way but these people’s homes should be infested with rats they should be bite by rats while they sleep and if they get rabbies good for them. Could have said worse but I will hold back,out of respect for Ralph but If they departed from this world I would cry tears of JOY.

  17. Nate Hobbs Avatar

    A interesting quote from the web from someone involved in the event:

    ” I can understand keeping a hunt under wraps from the general public. The Idaho Predator Derby is taking a ton of flack. I have received e-mails and phone calls from all over for our event. Even from France….if you can believe it. Nikon has pulled their sponsorship, and Cabela’s is thinking twice about it. I’m waiting for a final decision from them.
    So in the future should calling contests be better publicized or not? Its a tough call. What do you guys think?”

    In a later comment he mentions that Cabela’s has decided to still sponsor this event.

  18. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    Cabela’s may think again as I have sent the above quote of Sean Mottishaw, the director of the Pocatello chapter of Sportsman for Fish and Wildlife, to them

  19. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears


    You could only hope, but I suspect Cabela’s will not change their position, they sponsor all kinds of derby’s around the country and they are pure 100% pro hunting of any kind. The owner of Cabela’s is 100% pure hunting…I have met him in person many times and if you can shoot it or catch it, he will stand behind it!

  20. Aaron M.C. Avatar

    If your hunting because it is necessary or is critically more convenient for food depending on your situation, or if management involving killing is absolutely needed. That can be justified. As it is said in Genesis, every creature is delivered into your hand…after man screwed up with sin. BUT! I don’t think that aspect of things came into place so slaughter games or events could be organized for pleasure. It was not meant to be a recreational pastime. In my opinion, I don’t find that justifiable.

  21. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    save bears- i think calling this predator derby hunting is a bit of a stretch don’t you?

  22. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    William it may very well be, and I have not stated if I advocate or condemn, that I will keep within myself, but I was just saying, I seriously doubt, you would get Cabela’s to pull out, knowing the owner, this is one of those things I think is impossible, he sponsors pig derby’s in Alabama, Arkansas, east Texas, fishing derby’s in virtually ever state in the country.

  23. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    If enough people boycotted Cabela’s sales I’m sure he wouldn’t be so quick to support them in the future. I’m sure that can be arranged. People are sick and tired of “sportsmen” doing whatever they want at the expense of wildlife. The pictures of these sportsmen with the coyotes they look like degenerates out on a pass from the local mental hospital.

  24. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native

    The funny thing is that these type of events do not require sponsors at all. Most of the sponsors would most likely be donating gifts to be handed out in raffles and contest prizes. People do not go to these type of things for the chance to win a prize.

    Nikon pulling their sponsorship will not do anything at all to stop this event now or in the future.

  25. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears


    I agree 100%, they don’t need sponsors to hold these types of events, in reality, it happens virtually everyday in many parts of the west, I know guys in WA and OR that go out and shoot coyotes for a living so they can sell the pelts, of course pelt prices are down, so they just shoot more coyotes to compensate. And getting hunters to boycott Cabela’s ?

  26. dewey Avatar

    Where I live in Cody WY , the Big Horn Basin chapter of Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife is very active politically , statewide, way out in front of the other so-called conservation groups.

    BHBSFW has a Coyote bounty program. It’s managed by one of their stalwarts who’s an avid bird hunter. The belief is removing coyotes improves upland fowl hunting directly and wildlife health in general, and frees up country rpedator control agents and ur good friends at Wildlife (Dis)Services to work on other predators. ( Can you say ‘ wolves’? since Park COunty WY also hires its own predator agents to assist with wolf eradcations in liege with the ther agencies.

    In the beginning BHBSFW paid anyone $ 50.00 for them returning evidence of dead coyotes. Anyone could recieve the bounty. Anecdotally , a couple of young gung-ho’s working as a team made it their prime directive and brought in +/- 105 coyotes the first year alone. Yikes. BHBSFW’s expectations were wildly exceeded in numbers of coyotes taken. It must’ve cost them more than they had budgeted, however, because for a while the program was suspended , maybe because they succeeded too well or the remaining coyotes got street smart real fast ; maybe both . This winter it returned with new rules: only SFW members can collect the bounty , which as been reduced to $ 25.00

    At the time of the first BHBSFW war on coyotes, I was spending a lot of time at a ranchette a few miles outside of town. My ladyfriend had seven cats that weere allowed outdoors. We always heard coyotes nearby but had no direct evidence of them making incursions and bothering the other critters…until AFTER the highly successful coyote bounty had its predictable consequences. We began seeing remarkable numbers of raccoons , more skunks than I recall, and way more red fox. I began seeing red fox right up near the house. And sure enough , the cats started disappearing one after the other; five altogether.

    Sportsmen for ( Some) Fish and (Some) Wildlife had upset the balance with their vainglorious coyote bounty program. The other predators multiplied in the sudden absence of Canis letrans.

    As far as I’m concerned, the bounty backfired. But here they go again… new bounty on coyotes in Park County WY.

    Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife have utterly deluded themselves into believing they are good for critters and responsible stewards and set shining examples of proactive wildlife management. Three strikes and yer out, boys…

  27. Alan Avatar

    Corporations that support this garbage should be well publicized along with these photographs. I can understand Cabela’s, but to think that a company as well respected as Nikon (I don’t care what division) would even be remotely associated with these losers is shocking. Glad they pulled out, and glad I shoot Canon.
    This kind of activity demonstrates everything that is wrong with our species. Killing for food is one thing. Just about every animal on earth does that, even deer (just ask my flower garden!) Killing to protect your property that is actively being attacked by something, understandable. But killing for fun is wrong, and holding a contest to see who can kill the most, incredibly sick and perverted. It should also be illegal.
    BTW, hunters aren’t the only ones who shop Cabela’s. Many photographers, hikers, wildlife and bird watchers etc. have spent a lot of money there. We need to get the word out to them. Many of them, I am sure, will boycott.

  28. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    I am not optimistic, boycotting Cabela’s would be harder that boycotting Wal Mart, which does happen all over the country, often times what we want and what we have is to different…

  29. Jay Avatar

    I won’t spend a dime at that place–they are the walmart of sporting goods. Open up one of their catalogs and looks at the kind of craps they sell…they have a whole section on food plots for “growing” big bucks. Apparently its not enough to hunt anymore, now you grow deer with big antlers, set up your big tripod seat in the middle of your food plot, and wait for the toads to come in, whoopeee.

  30. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native


    Cabela’s has a whole section of their sales magazines dedicated to Predator hunting. They also send out a magazine that is specifically for Predator hunting. I must have missed the magazines specifically for bird watchers, hikers, and photographers.

  31. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Save bears- I’ve got a news flash for you. Most of the american public is ambivalent about hunting wild animals for food, but polls show strong opposition to killing animals for fun, competition, or bragging rights. Thousands of animals suffer and die for the amusement of these so-called hunters that wouldn’t understand wildlife conservation if it hit them between the eyes. The change is happening now, and it’s the regular hunter that is disgusted and embarrassed by the actions of these sportsmen that will stop them. It may take several decades but sport trophy hunting will be banned in all but the south and a few western states.

  32. jerryB Avatar

    The “owner” is not a single person.
    It’s been a publically traded company (CAB..NYSE) for a long time.
    I suggest that you buy a single share which entitles you to attend the shareholders meeting. Get enough people to do this you can make a difference. It’s been done many times ie..Boeing, Microsoft etc.
    One share is $12-$13.
    Buy a share Monday…make a difference.

  33. Barb Rupers Avatar
    Barb Rupers

    Lets not forget some of those other senseless slaughters like rattlesnakes, prairie dogs, and ground squirrels.

    “Since 1958, the World’s Largest Rattlesnake Round-Up has been held in Sweetwater, Texas and sponsored by the Sweetwater Jaycees. The event has grown over the past 50 years with over 123 tons of Western Diamondback Rattlesnakes turned in to date.”

  34. Bob Caesar Avatar
    Bob Caesar

    I would stongly suggest it would be highly effective if everyone you can contact would send Cabela’s an email and say photos showing the dead preditors and the Cabela’s logo will be circulated throughout the Internet. Millions of people will see it!

    The Cabela’s brothers and their managers are not fools. Yes, they support hunting totally, but they realize most people are turned off be these kinds of killing contests.

  35. Salle Avatar

    I know that Cabella’s also has several hunting video games available. Someone I know has a couple and they are truly gruesome. Their very much like the “socializing” video war and crime games one can play endlessly. Don’t know if they can be “shamed” into anything, but then, if enough of their patrons are not into this sort of activity and they say so in a loud way, you never know…

    Like Margaret Meade once said, (I’m paraphrasing here) Never underestimate what a small number of people… can accomplish…

    Food for thought.

  36. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    Response from Cabelas today,
    “Hello Jeff,

    Thank you for sending this email. We do appreciate you bringing this to our attention. I have forwarded the email onto our Executives to make them aware of your feelings on this. If you have any more questions, feel free to contact us.


    Cabela’s Customer Service”

  37. Mike Avatar

    ++The owner of Cabela’s is 100% pure hunting…I have met him in person many times and if you can shoot it or catch it, he will stand behind it!++

    This isn’t hunting though.

  38. Alan Avatar

    “I must have missed the magazines specifically for bird watchers, hikers, and photographers.” Nevertheless many who I know personally shop there. I have looked at their catalogs with some interest, though have always found what I was looking for at a better price (or quality) elsewhere. I agree that boycotting them would have little effect on their bottom line, but sometimes a boycott is more for the benefit of those boycotting than the detriment of the company being boycotted. I could care less if Cabela’s stays in business or goes out. My guess is that they will stay in business and thrive. Good for them. As I said, I don’t care. I do, however, very much care about where I spend MY money, and what is being supported as a result. I think a lot of other folks do to, regardless of whether or not it hurts the company’s bottom line.

  39. izabelam Avatar

    Nikon is our of sponoring the derby.
    We can make a difference!!!!!! Call, write..be heard!!!!
    Here is contact for Cabelas.
    Media Contact
    Joe Arterburn
    Corporate Communications Manager
    Ph: 308-255-1204

  40. Salle Avatar

    there are *usually* two aspects to a boycott;

    1) To influence the income of a company…

    2) To call public attention to the purpose of the boycott.

    If image matters to them, it may be what is called for. If they only care about their bottom line, the only satisfaction you can get is by not making any purchases at their benefit and knowing that you are not contributing to them in any way.

    Most of the things I have sought to buy was usually available elsewhere at a more reasonable price. I don’t buy anything that carries their name brand, even if it were free I wouldn’t take it because I consider it advertising when a product has the Cabella’s name on it.

  41. izabelam Avatar

    I meant to say..Nikon is OUT of…

  42. Anthony Avatar

    One thing you need to remember is that Cabelas is a corporation, presumably run by astute businessmen and they will do whatever is best for long term business interests(profits). If enough people threaten boycott, they will definitely listen. I know I won’t shop there anymore if they continue to sponser these events!

  43. izabelam Avatar

    You are right..call them and tell them your are selling their crappy stock!!!…heheheh

  44. Rich Hurry Avatar
    Rich Hurry

    JerryB’s got the right idea: invest less than $20 and become a thorn in their side. Also, current Cabela’s CEO is Tommy Millner, who was appointed to this position in April 2009, and “incentivized” to the position by the generous dangling of 250,000 shares/options of CAB stock. His position prior to this one: CEO of The Freedom Group, of which Remington Arms, Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary. I’m guessing bullets are what turns him on…But if we can impact CAB’s bottom line, then we REALLY sock it to HIS pocketbook! (I don’t shop at Wal*Mart, either)

    A suggestion: enlarge gruesome color photos of carnage from ‘derbies’ and make placards of them, all the better to picket with in front of Cabela’s entrances! We (Sea Shepherd Conservation Society members and friends) have had great responses from the public when doing similar actions to protest the spring seal pup “harvests” in Canada, including right on the front steps of Parliament Hill and at the border crossing at Detroit/Windsor.

    All actions help: email to corporate sponsors, educating general public to atrocities, inundating Death Panel (e.g., IDGF) members with emails expressing indignation and anger, becoming an “owner” of sponsors by purchasing a share of stock and then speaking out at shareholder meetings, and direct actions such as public protests at sponsors’ business locations and Death Panel public meetings, and anything else this imaginative group can devise!!

    As “Wobbly” activists say, “Nothing’s working, so try everything!”

  45. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    Rich and all,

    My 2 cents.

    The whole notion of predator derbies, rattlesnake roundups and the like disgusts me.

    However, I doubt any boycott of Cabela’s will make any difference. The difference to be made is here in Idaho.

    There is worse stuff out there too. I’ve been dithering about putting an article that Wildlife Services, Idaho Fish and Game, and the livestock nobility may have launched their real wolf effort — the mass airplane gunship killing of wolf packs under the guise of getting rid of troublesome wolf packs.

    I’ll probably put it up tonight or early tomorrow. I kind of want to see if the media has picked this up yet.

  46. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    Just as Ralph, I post my true honest opinion and I guess that was taken wrong, I didn’t say I supported this derby or any derby, I was just posting my opinion, based on my experience..and as many as there are, that purchase all of their hunting and fishing gear from Cabela’s it would be very difficult to hit their bottom line at all, and that is not saying it is not worth the effort, but…

    And I am sorry, I didn’t know there had be a change in CEO’s, It has been a couple of years since I was at a SHOT show, so that was my mistake.

    As Ralph said the problem is not Cabela’s, it is the state of Idaho,…Cabela’s is in the business of selling hunting and fishing gear and they are very effective at that job, the job of managing wildlife, is the responsibility of IDFG..

  47. Richie,NJ Avatar

    To people who want to do something;
    Ralph here is an idea, why don’t people who care put in money to take a full page add in the New York Times, defenders did it why not us under your Blog’s name. I will get fifty dollars up and if you need more tell me. I think we can all make a difference, it will give your page exposure and it will tell many people what is going on out west with Obama.The president is becoming a real middle peson why I do not know,but at this point he might not even run in 2012. One other thing, I heard franchise owners of Burger King are taking the company to court “Burger King”, because they can’t make money from the dollar menu. Two double cheese burgers for three dollars it’s all about cheap beef, and they say the beef is from the north west so their it is.

  48. hilljack Avatar

    Glad you posted this I might just compete in one of the derby’s. The only reason I wouldn’t is the funds go towards the wolf litigation fund and I don’t think I could support an anti-wolf fund. Hunting predators with friends is a great way to spend a freezing winter day.

  49. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    RitchieNJ and all,

    I don’t envision this blog becoming a political actor for any side. Getting the news out in a way the MSM and the various groups don’t get it out, is my goal.

    If you want to take an action like this, I suggest someone post a comment saying, “If you want to do X, here is my email. Email me; we will make a list and organize to accomplish our goal.”

  50. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    don’t for one minute think that cabela’s is not sensitive to a potential negative connection to this predator event. I just got off the phone with Mr Arterburn, and he asked me for the website from the sportsmen group. He told me they would investigate this issue and he told me that they are always conscious to the views of the non-hunting customer, because their sales of hunting goods are not their only source of revenue, and he understood that times are changing and that people are more sensitive to this type of hunt. I warned him that a potential boycott would not be good for their image and he agreed

  51. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    good job izabelam posting the contact info

  52. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    william huard,

    Well, that is a pleasant surprise!

  53. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Ralph -thanks to you, people have an outlet to communicate their views .

  54. Nathan Avatar

    ISFW makes no mention of the exact meeting place of the event on the website but, according to a face book posting by White Tip Archery.

    The Predator Derby will be assembling tonight 7pm on the Pocatello Fair grounds

    The event will conclude the following day at the same location and time.

  55. jerryB Avatar

    izabelam……….I sent Joe and email. but it was returned. (invalid Email address)
    Will you double-check the email?

  56. jerryB Avatar

    izabelam…you can disregard above comment. Resent email and it went through.

  57. Richie,NJ Avatar

    If anybody has an idea how get the word out to the public, my e-mail cobra428@optonline.net, and all comments are welcome,of course I am in favor of being more for the wolf and wildlife in general. The cottonwood pack is just an example what is wrong with the way the hunt is applied. To Ralph it was just an idea to use your blog to expand, but my objective is to get the public to know what is going on with the hunt and the poisons being used. Many people on the blog are upset with what has happened to the wolf and the other wildlife I am just trying to give an idea for all who are concerned.

  58. Cris Waller Avatar

    If you want to see an example of a predator-killing contest that’s been going on for years (so long that Cleveland Amory wrote about it in the ’70s) check this out-

    They’ve moved the hunt from Globe, AZ to Las Cruces,New Mexico, where they get together for an entire convention dedicated to going out and blasting predators.

  59. Rich Hurry Avatar
    Rich Hurry

    Thanks for the link, Chris. A quick check shows “usual suspects” of Cabela’s and NIKON (“coyote special” hunting scope) are proud sponsors of Predator Masters website!

    Don’t break out champagne yet over chasing Nikon out of Idaho’s Predator Derby…they’re thick as thieves elsewhere.

    Cabela’s may be incorrigible, but I’ve got to believe Nikon makes a lot more money off camera and lenses sales than gun scopes. More pressure on them is clearly called for!!!

  60. izabelam Avatar

    Joe Arterburn
    Corporate Communications Manager
    Cabela’s Inc.
    One Cabela Drive
    Sidney, NE 69160

  61. izabelam Avatar

    Idaho is a problem. I pay my taxes in Idaho, I have e-mailed the Otter guy. I wonder if his PR will even respond.
    I talked to people and the mentality of some just scares me. The fact that there is not enough’ new blood’ in Idaho causes the probelm to go from generation to generation. Not too many people move to Idaho from more progressive states. Some move only as part timers and dont’ really want to involve in any issues. Utah used to be very close minded state. Finally, we are openning up and are more accepting. As long a decision makers are ‘old’ owners of Idaho, nothing will change. Sad but true.

  62. izabelam Avatar

    For Nikon – media contact:
    Tara Naughton
    E: tnaughton@mww.com
    T: 201.507.9500

    Binoculars and Scopes
    Greg Chevalier
    T: 503.639.9190

  63. Rich Hurry Avatar
    Rich Hurry

    Izabelem, I agree problem is with Idaho, but I’m much more sanguine than you. I don’t know what part of Idaho you’re in, but up here in Northern part of state, I see U-Hauls coming in every week to towns like Sandpoint, Coeur d’Alene, Ponderay, Spirit Lake, Priest River, and Hope. Right here in Sandpoint we must have over a dozen retired profs from Columbia Univ., U.C. Berkley, Washington, and elsewhere. And these are just ones I’ve come into contact with since I moved here 5 months ago from Ann Arbor (Peoples’ Republic of Ann Arbor to our “friends”). I’ve seen even a few “I Don’t Care How You Did Things In Caifornia” bumper stickers, mainly on beat-up pickup trucks.

    Demographics are changing for sure and hopefully it’s just a matter of time before we can affect who’s representing us, too!

  64. gline Avatar

    Izabalam, just sent off a couple of emails, thanks to your contact information. But didn’t Nikon pull out?

  65. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    If you look at the predator derby page, the Nikon logo is gone.

    I did buy something from Cabelas this year; can’t remember what. I bought both hiking boots and ammo from Sportsman’s Warehouse in Pocatello. Well no more of that.

    I thought they went belly up. Maybe they operating under chapter 11 or something.

  66. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    They did go bankrupt. “Sportsman’s Warehouse files for bankruptcy.” Sat Mar 21, 2009. Reuters.

  67. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears


    They have been purchased by a Canadian company and still operating as Sportsman Warehouse in virtually all of their old market areas..

  68. gline Avatar

    A Canadian co? Not even American?? Well there you go, another reason not to buy from them.

  69. gline Avatar

    FYI: All of the contact emails of the Sportmans store do not work. has anyone else gotten non working replies?

  70. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native

    Sportsmans Warehouse was not purchased by a Canadian company. They are still ran out of their corporate offices in Utah.

    However a compnay out of Alberta Canada by the name UFA Co-op did purchase 15 Sportsmans Warehouse retail stores in Montana, Washington, Idaho and Oregon. They do not operate these stores under the Sportsmans Warehouse name but rather Wholesale Sports.

  71. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native

    You all are sure providing me with some very good entertainment. I have to laugh that everyone thinks that they are making a difference by contacting a couple of sponsors of this event.

    Every sponsor of these events could pull out, and guess what, the events will still happen. They cost absolutely nothing to put on and the participants do not show up to these things to win money or prizes. Bragging rights for the “Best Caller” are by far and away the biggest reason someone comes to this type of event.

    The only thing that may come of all your boycotts or what have you, is these events will become underground type of events. This will prevent you from exposing them to the public.

    Southwest Wyoming has had three of these type of events since the middle of October. How many of you have heard of them? One was a “By Invitation Only” in Rock Springs, while the other two were more open with ads being put up in local grocery stores.

    Even though they were underground events they brought in hundreds of teams and killed hundreds if not thousands of coyotes, all without Cabela’s, SW, or Nikon offering an ounce of sponsorship.

  72. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Wyo native- I’m so happy to hear that we are entertaining you. It may not happen for years, but it will happen that these events will become history. In the meantime I get plenty of satisfaction calling these cowards out that masquarade as sportsmen. never underestimate the power of activism.

  73. gline Avatar

    Do you suggest just doing nothing then? I think it is good for them to know there are people that think it is disgusting, even if they don’t care and things wont change. Nikon pulled, and that is a small change that wouldnt have happened wo the negative pr

  74. gline Avatar

    Wyo native: I’ve heard of killing lotterys in MT for coyotes in Billings. One year I called the bank that sponsored it, letting them know how I feel and I wouldn’t ever use their bank. I’ve heard of coyote killing en masse for years… doesn’t mean I wont speak against it. Why do you assume we are idiots? Might as well lie back and do nothing in your eyes.

  75. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that the coyote has more intelligence than the average sportsmen for fish and wildlife in Idaho.

  76. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native


    These events will never go away especially if they become underground type of events and not open for the public to see.

    Kind of hard to call the people out if you don’t know these type of events are happening, don’t you think?

  77. gline Avatar

    LOL william

    There are lots of underground events that will never go away, child porn, drug rings etc.
    These events won’t go away if they are not underground either…
    I see the point, but not doing anything doesn’t make it go away.

  78. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Wyo Native-I don’t know how you feel about these predator derby events. My feeling- as evidenced by the pictures of those degenerates posing with the dead coyotes- is that these people have a psychopathic tendency for killing- and where i come from that behavior is not normal. These people have way to much time on their hands to focus on killing predators for the hell of it? I will continue to confront them, insult them, and do whatever it takes to make them realize that I loathe their very existence

  79. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native


    I must have missed the part where I assumed you were an idiot. Naive and emotional to the situation yes, but not an idiot.

    If you clicked the earlier link to the predator forum you will see what I am talking about. The people who are holding these type of events are already considering going underground.

    Nikon pulling out is not a small change however. How did having them pull out save one coyote during this event, or future events?

    The only way to stop these type of events is to change laws, not eliminate sponsors.

  80. gline Avatar

    Naive? you dont know me at all. You are assuming you do, but good luck. Now stop insulting me.

  81. gline Avatar

    To label someone as emotional doesn’t win your case of being the rational, UNemotional one.

    That tactic is used so quick on this blog … not much thought given to a real conversation. just insult someone quick and get your point in. King of aggressive isnt it?

    What is lacking in wildlife management is exactly that, the feminine side. Too much testosterone.

  82. gline Avatar

    *Kind not king, but that fits too

  83. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native


    I have never attended nor plan to attend one of these events, but I know many people who do, including members of my own family. I do not support nor condone the killing of predators.

    I am a liberal in the true sense that I don’t feel it is my place to impose my morals on others.

  84. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Wyo Native- Liberals advocate for social justice, and when I see immoral conduct like killing animals for fun and bragging rights I will speak out against it. These are not just my morals but the morals of a large segment of the population. What percent of the population would you say thinks these events are ok? Twenty percent? maybe twenty five? at most

  85. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native


    I’ll ask you once again, how does Nikon dropping their sponsorship of this event keep a single coyote from being killed, now or in the future? Prove to me how I am wrong.

    It may make you feel good, (hence the emotion) but the simple fact is it does not save a single coyote (hence the naivety).

    This isn’t aggressiveness, it is reality.

  86. gline Avatar

    Wyo native: I dont need to prove how you are wrong. never said you were wrong about Nikon dropping out saves any animal. What I am saying is that people still need to speak up. More people need to know about it and speak up. You are saying speaking up make the actions go underground. At that point what the other choice do you have? send in a mole? Its been done before…

    Everyone has emotion so what? we are human.

  87. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    Wyo Native,

    Predator derbies are often an acceptable part of rural culture. I grew up shooting magpies, squirrels, various small rodents, and rabbits. There was no thought. It was just something we did. I went to a rural high school in northern Utah. Of course, that was in the 1960s too. Times change, and that’s one reason rural areas are resentful. The larger culture doesn’t like some of their values.

    Predator derbies are thought of as being like dog fighting contests by the wider culture.

    On the Internet these cultures and various sub-cultures come together and clash.

    In parts of Africa, Female Genital Mutilation is a procedure that is usually performed on girls before puberty. Part or all of the clitoris is surgically removed.

    It is part of their culture. Outside of the area, it’s not a popular practice. International businesses wouldn’t put their logos up on an African web site devoted to the practice. “Use your Nikon to capture exciting rites of puberty.” I don’t think so.
    – – – – –
    Predator derbies do not make much of a dent in the coyote population. The overall biological result of things like this has been to make the coyote the most successful carnivore in North America. The coyote went from being a creature of the Western U.S. to conquer the entire continent due to the strong pressure heavy human mortality put on the animal to adapt. The presence of coyotes everywhere in turn changes the environment for many other kinds of animal.

  88. JB Avatar

    “The people who are holding these type of events are already considering going underground.”

    Good. If your past time can’t stand the light of exposure then it belongs underground.

    The point of protest is to expose such events for what they are: killing contests. This exposure generates outrage and persuades people to take further action. I recommend the documentary, “Killing Coyote” to anyone who wants to know what these contests are really about.

  89. JB Avatar

    “I’ll ask you once again, how does Nikon dropping their sponsorship of this event keep a single coyote from being killed, now or in the future? Prove to me how I am wrong.”

    Wyoming Native: Getting big name sponsors to drop their sponsorship shows participants that their actions are not something that society believes are ethical. It is a form of sanction that reinforces an ethical norm–in this case, it lets potential participants know that society views killing contests as unacceptable. Asking how this saves coyotes misses the point, which is to convey to participants strong societal disapproval for their actions. Most people do not wish to be viewed as outcasts/unethical, so sustained pressure = less participation in events in the future.

    To answer your question directly: if one single hunter doesn’t show up because of this protest, then you’ve likely saved a coyote or three. 🙂

  90. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    Wyonative, actually They sold 15 of their stores to a Canadian Company Called UFA, I remember because the new company would not honor a couple of gift cards I had received for Xmas

    Here is an article from Oregon Live, March 11, 2009 edition.


  91. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears


    have not had my coffee yet, Wyonative, I reread the thread and see you already posted the info.

  92. Nature rules Avatar
    Nature rules

    I am glad so much attention has gone to this. I posted up about it when I found out (on the Idaho wolf hunt thread, and it is disgusting. I have never purchased or even gone into a Cabelas, once I heard they cater to hunters and had stuffed animals and hunting videos playing I was not interested. good for Nikon, it is a blight on their name, I was disgusted when I read they sponsor this garbage, as a amateur wild life photographer I feel camera’s are to preserver our nature, not promote it’s killing. One day this hunt will end, laws will be passed, for now all we can do is let our voices be heard, anyone want to contribute to a sign in time square this new years? Post up some nice pictures of all the dead animals and names and places??? and anyone that says they do not believe in this and even there family members do it, but they will not say anything, well you need to check your morals some, speak up Wyo Native! or is it that you really do hunt like this and that is why you will not condemn it?

  93. izabelam Avatar

    Wyo native.
    You ask “I’ll ask you once again, how does Nikon dropping their sponsorship of this event keep a single coyote from being killed, now or in the future? Prove to me how I am wrong.”
    It is matter of supporting the company which in turn spends money on horrific type of activity. I will not buy rpdocuts (if I can help) from companies doing wrong to my causes. Simple. Screw Cabelas and other sponsors of cruelty. You know money is powerful..If more poeple were involved and stop buying in places supporting cruel killing, maybe we would be better world.

  94. izabelam Avatar

    Rich Hurry,
    I am in Island Park. I hope the demographics will change. And I also hope that attitudes “I dont’ care” will change. We need to change to make a change….oh..boy..kind of motivation speech.

  95. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse

    Nature Rules,

    You may be disappointed to know Nikon entered the rifle scope and range finder manufacturing arena about 10 years ago. Their products are displayed prominantly in Cabelas catalogs. They are constantly coming out with new offerings every year, and hoping to take market share from the big players like Leupold. A current catalog even includes a new product line called “coyote scope” specifically designed for the “predator hunter” to use their words (variable high magnification with reticle markation for long distance shooting).

    As for Nikon’s decision to withdraw from this stupid SFW derby, it probably has more to do with their image as a camera and lens manufacturer for “nature lovers.” They are loosing market share to Canon on their professional grade products. My wife made the shift from Nikon to Canon professional gear about five years ago- digital and 35mm, which we still use. Art Wolf, a noted world class photographer, who once used exclusively Nikon for most of his career, has been a Canon promoter for maybe 8-10 years.

  96. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse

    I sent an email to the Cabelas corporate communications chap Joe opposing their apparent sponsorship of the derby, and received a reply noting they are still “looking into it.”

    The phone number Isabelam gave rings at the desk of the Cabela’s corporate branding representative – Kelly (I missed her last name). You can leave message there, as well, 1-800-331-3454.

    JB is correct, in my view. Our personal protests or boycotts of sponsors will likley not result in preventing a single coyote death. Rather it is a negative reinforcement of the conduct of these idiots. Sometimes shame is an effective motivator, but for these troglodytes, it will likely not do much except push them underground. To the extent any of the commercial sponsors offer prizes or discounts to participants, etc. it might make a small dent. At least, you can feel good about having tried to effect change.

  97. kt Avatar

    You know, that is really a short-sighted business model, as fewer and fewer “hunters” of any kind are out there.

    Of course, I guess there is always the market for purchases by Blackwater Xe psycho types returning to the homeland.

    How many of these coyote scopes can also be long-range human killing purposes? If I were the Secret Service, I would be paying attention to Gun Nut gear like these Nikon products – and its purchasers in White Supremacist leaning areas like Idaho. That is, after they figure out how to get guest lists straight.

  98. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    MonsterMuleys has been following the blog. This may be of interest.


  99. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    The hunting crowd at monstermuleys knows the reality. It will take some time but we will take away some of their “hunting rights” to hold these predator derbies one state at a time. You know they are scared to death to lose these rights. How would they spend their weekends if they don’t have the ability to blow away predators at will.

  100. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    I have to laugh when they call us idiots. They should take a good look in the mirror.

  101. Salle Avatar

    Here’s what I said, in part, on another thread just now,

    “I just read the posts at the web site/blog Ralph put a link to and I find it interesting that I have been lumped into a nebulous group known as the anti-hunting league. I find that interesting because I don’t think I can be anti-hunting if I feed from the freezers of friends who hunt for food. I don’t go out and hunt myself but I don’t feel that hunting for food is wrong altogether.

    I see a lot of this belly-aching from the wildlife opponents as blatant displays of the disparate acts of cutting education funding until the general public is lacking any ability in critical thinking skills and absolute ignorance in civics. I’ve said this for many years now, “Idaho is proud of its ignorance” ~ (or is that ignorants?) With all the $$ spent on this type of trashy activity, one can only shake their head in wonder at the rationale behind all the education funding cuts in a state that rates 47th, out of 50 (for several years), in the support of education for its residents.”

  102. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Salle- Two words- Butch Otter. I had never heard of him until he made his “kill a wolf myself “gaff. He is governor of his state, and it was inappropriate for him to make such a partisan and political comment. That told me volumes about his intelligence or lack of it rather.

  103. JB Avatar

    Thanks, Ralph.

    It’s notable that anyone who they see as against predator killing contests is considered “anti-hunting.” I am a strong supporter of ETHICAL recreational and subsistence hunting. However, I don’t support killing for the sake of killing. I take this position knowing that coyote populations are not at all at risk, nor are coyotes really impacted by these contests for more than a year or so. Rather, I take the position because I believe that holding a contest to see who can kill the most of X species is inherently wrong; that is, it conveys exactly the wrong message about how we should/should not interact with wildlife resources. These contests do not teach appropriate stewardship nor respect for resources. They only teach that killing can be fun and rewarding.

    I understand that some people disagree. That’s fine. But it is blatantly wrong to suggest that only people who are anti-hunting want these predator derbies stopped.

  104. gline Avatar

    Oh that is the blog I was talking about the other day – Monster Muleys- I said it was Layton’s blog, maybe it was Ryans’…

  105. gline Avatar

    Thanks Ralph, this should be interesting to see the crosshairs

    One comment: “many people are using $8000 Nikon cameras to take pictures of wolves(buy [sic] the way I hate wolves)…”

    Then in the next sentence, “they [Nikon] make enough products that help me kill animals that I would stil buy from them…”

    How much does a coyote riflescope cost?

  106. Elk275 Avatar

    ++You know, that is really a short-sighted business model, as fewer and fewer “hunters” of any kind are out there. ++

    I wished that was true, yesterday I went to the Madison Valley to hunt elk. Hunters everywhere, up to 40 trucks in one parking lot and 12 to 15 hunting camps in one small drainage. Today, I went to the Bangtails just east of Bozeman on timber company land and there was another 40 to 50 trucks, ATV’s and snowmachines. There are hunters everywhere.

    I think that I an going to Red Lodge, Montana and into the Beartooths where I have an unlimited mountain sheep tag and try to get a ram or deer tomorrow.

  107. Richie,NJ Avatar

    O.K. if the people at these contests are 18 to 30 why don’t they join and fight in the so called war. I think many of these people at the hunts feel like they can’t control their lives, so they must kill to keep some sort of control in their lives. Just a thought, hunting for food is one thing but these contests are the same as dog fighting and cock fighting. We have illegal dog and cock fights all over in the east, from the Bronx to Coney Island. It’s a sin but blood thirsty people are all over the world, bear fights with dogs in other countries and much more. But if we can speak out what is in our own backyard this is a good thing. I like to ask again how can we organize something to bring this to the attention of the American public.

  108. gline Avatar

    Richie: I think it is best to give money to conservation groups – and I mean the green conservation groups ie Earthjustice, Western Watersheds, Centers for Biological Diversity, or Wild Earth Guardians. There are many many many conservationist/environmentalist groups out there. (wonder why?) Just pick one. As far as organizing anything here, that may not happen. I’m sure there is something locally where you can have have a positive impact.

  109. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native

    My word do you folks every spend anytime in the outdoors, or do you just around complaining. 😉 J/K

    Ralph I sent you an email of my morning rabbit hunting trip, it may be of interest to you.

  110. gline Avatar

    Was out hiking in the rain while you were complaining here yesterday wyo native! 🙂

  111. Richie,NJ Avatar

    To Gline;
    Thanks I do give to earthjustice and defenders and sometimes to NRDC, thank you again, sad to see this going on but these killings are just full of hate.

  112. Salle Avatar

    Wyo Native,

    funny you should ask…

    I spent seven hours out on skis yesterday and today, while nursing my tired, old body I saw an interesting animal about 50yrds from the porch. I thought it might be a pine marten. I just got back from confirming that it was, there were fresh tracks, along with some coyote, squirrel and brush strokes from ravens in the snow. The coyote tracks were from this morning before a light snowfall.

  113. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    How much snow so far?

  114. Salle Avatar

    I’m in W. Yellowstone for the ski festival that ends today. There’s about ten inches. Only a light dusting fell very early this morning. It’s a good start for a decent base for ski trails.

    Last year at this time it was very cold with no snow in the basin, fall camp was held up on the South Plateau at 7,000+ft – and they only had a few inches there, grass was poking through the ski trails during the races.

  115. izabelam Avatar

    Wyo Native,
    I hike and snowshoe and used to ski before having ACL replaced. So..besides complaining I enjoy outdoors here in Utah and YSNP.

  116. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    Cabela’s response to my first e-mail;
    “Response from Cabelas today,
    “Hello Jeff,

    Thank you for sending this email. We do appreciate you bringing this to our attention. I have forwarded the email onto our Executives to make them aware of your feelings on this. If you have any more questions, feel free to contact us.


    Cabela’s Customer Service”
    nothing since then so I sent this today;
    “To whom it may concern,
    As I have received no positive feedback concerning this issue I am therefore assuming that Cabela feels that such rhetoric espoused by Mr. Mottishaw , a representative of Sportsmen for fish and wildlife, is acceptable and Cabela’s is/will continuing to support that organizations activities. I feel that is an unfortunate decision on Cabela’s behalf and as such I along with my family will no longer patronize your establishments as this is not the value set that we can support.
    In addition I plan to contact those organizations concerned with issues relating to Chinese-Americans and make them aware of this situation and your apparent tacit approval of Mr Mottishaws stereotyping of a significant segment of American society.

    waiting for a reply

  117. gline Avatar

    what is the email you are using for cabelas jeff E?

  118. gline Avatar

    Good for you Richie.

    The hate has been here for a long time, also elsewhere in the world as you know.

  119. gline Avatar

    Never mind, got the email off the Monster Muleys site


    I’ll just go back and forth on these 2 for awhile!

  120. jerryB Avatar

    “I like to ask again how can we organize something to bring this to the attention of the American public.”

    Richie…Ralph has OK to give you my email. Have an idea and will email the info to you.
    Jerry B

  121. gline Avatar

    have you emailed Jim Lukens Jerry? How do you communicate your horror?

  122. cc Avatar

    The main issue with these predator derbies is the devaluing of coyotes. It’s the same issue with everyone else who kills coyotes without restraint. Coyotes are killed all time because of an ingrained notion that they are bad. I don’t see much difference between the mindset of one who participates in these events and someone who doesn’t but still shoots coyotes anytime, anywhere, year round. To a dead coyote it’s definitely ll the same.

  123. Taz Alago Avatar
    Taz Alago

    The other sponsor of the “Derby”:
    CEO of Sportsman’s Warehouse – Stuart B. Utgaard:

    PH: (715) 248-7400.
    FAX: (715) 248-7410.
    E-MAIL: stu@utgaard.net

    Give him a yell.

  124. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Has anybody read any of the posts from the social misfits at monsterwhatever blog. One post called us “Ultra liberal, wolf-loving, illiterate( at least he spelled illiterate correctly),gay, hippie midgets on crack” These degenerates have no clue. They think they can do whatever they want to wildlife and because it’s legal we will just accept it. If we don’t we are labeled anti-hunter? These people fail to realize many of us are hunters, but we respect all animals. If these sportsmen were so proud of their coyote contest why did they pull the photos of cousin it and company? These thrill kill events, wildlife preserve guarantee kill or no pay ( which no on ever admits to going too) facilities are toxic to the image of hunters everywhere.
    I hope before i die these forms of hunting abuse will be banned by state legislatures in the U.S.

  125. Rita K.Sharpe Avatar
    Rita K.Sharpe

    I have to agree with CC on the fact that coyotes are killed all year round and all the time ,pedator derby or not.

  126. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Coyotes have been persecuted for hundreds of years, but no one has been able to eradicate them, not the federal gov, no one. Ralph has stated before about it being a cultural norm in the west. The fish and wildlife depts down south are trying to crack down on wildlife penning, where coyotes and foxes are let loose at hunting clubs to grade the hunting dogs. I just cannot believe the ignorance of people, and to think that people get enjoyment from watching an animal get torn to shreds- after all it’s just a coyote.

  127. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    William Huard,

    Yes, I’ve been reading Monster Muleys. It is interesting. It shows the folks who got upset about the predator derby made a difference.

    Some folks here have said that web site is Layton’s. I was very doubtful of that. The Founder of the site is a guy named “Brian Latturner.” He commented to those on his site that wanted to boycott Nikon in turn were overreacting.

    I was amused by one commenter that the real problem is “those people who go to Yellowstone with their $8000 Nikon scopes . . . it makes a local coyote contest not worth the hassle [to Nikon].”

  128. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Ralph, where i live predator derby events are illegal. I’m afraid the mix of people that make up your state legislature in Idaho have no problem with these wildlife abuses. Heck, they have no problem wiping out entire packs of wolves that are not anywhere near livestock. Do you think this recent killing of wolves was a revenge killing?

  129. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native

    Ralph, William,

    What website are you talking about?

  130. Wyo Native Avatar
    Wyo Native


    I found the link you provided yesterday. I must have glanced over it.

  131. Dusty Roads Avatar
    Dusty Roads

    Of course it’s “revenge killing”. These mental midgets have no control over anything in their worlds except over animals that have little ability to protect themselves from guns, especially those carried by ATVs and that have high powered scopes.

    These are the same folks who are 100% behind the idea that the federal government foisted these unwanted predators upon them in the first place (that being wolves and the reintroduction there of).

    There is no respect for the natural world. There is absolute hatred for anyone who has such respect, it scares them.

    It’s as simple as that. Talking tough and in a superior tone is the only weapon they have, actual intellect is beyond them ~ in their minds ~ thus the disdain for scientific inquiry or anything that promotes it. It’s all about them and nothing matters more than the feeling that they “got one over” on someone they despise. The only tools they feel they need are the kind that require no complexity of thought, only simplicity like pulling a trigger.

    What was that line…? “Happiness is a warm gun…”

  132. ProWolf in WY Avatar
    ProWolf in WY

    This is very good to have this goo online. I am also glad that the Sportsmen’s Warehouse poster is in the background. Maybe people will think twice about buying from them. I know I won’t now. I believe Cabela’s is also a sponsor.

  133. ProWolf in WY Avatar
    ProWolf in WY

    Does anyone know of a way to contact the powers-to-be at these businesses who are in charge of sponsorship?

  134. Taz Alago Avatar
    Taz Alago

    ProWolf – They’ve been posted on this blof, but here they are again:

    CEO of Sportsman’s Warehouse – Stuart B. Utgaard:
    PH: (715) 248-7400.
    FAX: (715) 248-7410.
    E-MAIL: stu@utgaard.ne

    CEO of Cabela’s: thomas.millner@cabelas.com

    Millner has made a civil reply to me but I believe Cabela’s decided to continue their sponsorship. Is that right?

  135. gline Avatar

    There are more “trash” derbys: in Dec and Jan. Got an email from Nikon that they won’t be a part of any of this!

  136. Ryan Avatar

    All of this talk about hate and bigotry makes my skin rile up.

    Its funny I read that tread on there, a couple of comments about deragatory comments about green necks, but it has since turned into a discussion about scopes etc.. Contrast that with this thread, which seems to be filled with hate, labeling, and possible goverment terrorism inuendos.

    How many of you have actually talked to a serious predator hunter? Most of them that I know don’t hate coyotes, just have a different set of values associated with them.

  137. Richie,NJ Avatar

    Funny they don’t hate coyotes, then why in the picyures at the contest holding up a dead bloodied coyote body full of blood they have this sinister smile, oh I must have mistaken the pictures.

  138. Ryan Avatar


    You’ll find alot of smiling hunters in pictures, Smiling doesn’t mean hate.

  139. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse


    What are your thoughts regarding competitive “derby” hunting events and the taking of as many bobcats, coyotes, foxes and anything else that scores points for a prize of some type in a given time period?

  140. Richie,NJ Avatar

    To Ryan
    Well you might be right, but I would not like them not to hate me either.

  141. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse


    Your comment: “Of course it’s “revenge killing”. These mental midgets have no control over anything in their worlds except over animals that have little ability to protect themselves from guns, especially those carried by ATVs and that have high powered scopes.”

    You may find that some predator hunters are more accomplished and civilized beyond your assertion. My cousin, a registered engineer by profession and gregarious manager of many people, has been a predator hunter for over thirty years. Like some engineering types, he finds that precision machinery in the form of a specialized rifle (a bull barrel .223 bolt action with a very expensive high power scope), are amazing inventions, He hand loads ammunition and chronographs his bullets (checks the velocity with a machine designed for that purpose). He enjoys shooting long distances. He also feels a sense of accomplishment when he is successful, which could very well be detected in a smile when posing with his take. His interests are coyotes only.

    He also feels he is doing a service when shooting coyotes on his friends’ ranch, where they cause problems with the livestock, and hence cost the rancher money. By the way, they do not run stock on federal lands.

    He does not participate in “derbies,” and since I just talked to him about these events and my own opposition to them, I know he disapproves, as well.

    And, yep, there are alot of mental midgets out there doing this crap – just why one would want to kill bobcats and fox, escapes me.

  142. Ryan Avatar


    I’ve never been a part of one, although I could see the alure as they are a good social networking event among predator hunters. If they are anything like the fishing tournaments I have been a part of they could be fun. (the socializing part of it) Bobcats and Foxes still have value at the market, Bobcats average 250.00 and foxes are still up over 50.00. Coyotes are they only thing that have taken a serious dive as far as prices.

    Most of the guys I have met who predator hunt with any amount of success are pretty normal guys, business owners, professionals, etc, not all inbred trailer trash as they assertion has been made here.

  143. Richie,NJ Avatar

    Ryan whoever called them trailer trash I have not seen that statement, but as for people of hate and in the need of power,now that’s another story.

  144. Virginia Avatar

    Jane Goodall: “Once we accept that a living creature has feelings and suffers pain; then if we knowingly and deliberately inflict suffering on that creature we are equally guilty. Whether it be human or animal, we brutalize ourselves.”

  145. Richie,NJ Avatar

    TO Dusty;
    Why doesn’t the engineer calculate the projectile motion with wind resistance aiming at clay pigions. He will get the same answers at aiming at coyotes.As for helping the rancher,the more you kill coyotes the more little ones they will have, just natures way of fighting back.

  146. Ryan Avatar

    “but as for people of hate and in the need of power,now that’s another story.”


    I keep hearing this hate and power assertation, does this come from actual expirience or items you have read on the internet?

  147. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Virginia – do you consume animal meat?

  148. Richie,NJ Avatar

    To Ryan;
    No Ryan can only go by my own feelings, can’t see something being killed and screaming in pain, just me Ryan,let the creature live it has a hard enough life. If we call these animals predators what should ourselves hunters, no I don’t think so.

  149. Richie,NJ Avatar

    Most people who write like Virginia walk the walk, or are very close to not eating meat at all.

  150. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse


    I gather your comment addressed to Dusty was actually directed to me, as it was my cousin the engineer who is a predator hunter on occasion. The thinking is that if you grew up on a ranch or around one, you would probably have learned a different value system, maybe a little coarser than in an urban environment. Coyotes in the chicken coop, and all that.

    I guess some ranchers believe that livestock predator control by dispatching individual animals is helpful. Certainly there are critics of this, and maybe they are right about the biology. I do not know, and I don’t shoot coyotes myself.

    Richie, you might benefit from a trip out West to work as a ranch laborer year-round for about two years (maybe even base your compensation on how profitable the operation is during that time). You may arrive at different conclusions about alot of things.

  151. Si'vet Avatar

    Let me try and shed some light on the predator derby. My comments are to answer some of your questions, I am not posting them so you come up more deragatory remarks, I am also not trying to sway your opinion. These are just the facts. The coyote derby’s are held as fund raiser by outdoor organizations that are trying to improve wildlife and wildlife habitat. Only a portion of the entry fee is paid out, raffles and silent auctions generate more money. For example the money generated by the latest SFW derby goes directly for ; continue fencing along an interstate that cuts through deer winter grounds, saving human lives and wildlife, water guzzlers for the desert, land leases and purchases to protect critical wintering grounds, and yes some for wolf litigation, both sides have the right to be heard. I don’t leave in a trailer, I’m not illiterate and I don’t shoot game from my car, but I do hunt big game and predators. When not hunting I am usually helping with a wildlife projects that makes life easier for all wildlife. Most people, even here in Idaho who hunt have a tremendous love for our wildlife and have spent $$ and time trying to keep it at sustainable levels. A lot of pro wolf websites talk about the increase in elk over the last 25yrs. which is done in a large part by hunters and hunting organizations, and we are sensitive about how much we have accomplished and how fast it can change.. Back to the derby: a bowl of chili, some raffle tickets, some chat about how wily and tough coyotes are to hunt then out to the field. Experienced predator hunters average about a 13% success rate. As is typical this time of year the majority of the coyotes turned at this derby were taken on or near private land and the majority were in the mid to later stages of sarcoptic mange, which runs higher when canines are at high end levels of there population. People that hunt predators are not doing revenge killing, or hate their mothers etc. they have chosen to hunt and try to harvest one of the most wily of animals. Most of us who hunt coyotes have alot of respect for their intelligents and ability’s. If predators hunters are not out there reducing the numbers to sustainable levels generally 2 things will happen, overpopulation and then goverment intervention.

  152. Snobr9 Avatar

    Jeff E.
    Can you tell us which Idaho Fish and Game Commissioner belongs to the Sportsman for Fish and Wildlife? I was at the commissioners meeting in Coeur D’Alene on Nov. 18th. There was alot of strong opposition to the wolf hunt there and they ignored it all and voted unanimously and without debate to extend the wolf hunting season to March 31 throughout the state!

  153. Snobr9 Avatar

    Also, Nate Helm of SFW was there, and was one of the relatively few people who spoke against wolves there that night. This barbaric predator derby was brought up by someone from NIWA (Northern Idaho Wolf Alliance) and she asked the commissioners why they allow such things to go on…

  154. Cutthroat Avatar

    “Jeff E.
    Can you tell us which Idaho Fish and Game Commissioner belongs to the Sportsman for Fish and Wildlife?”

    Jeff E identified Tony McDermott of Sagle in older post.

  155. gline Avatar

    “You’ll find alot of smiling hunters in pictures, Smiling doesn’t mean hate.”

    No, it just means total domination of the “dog”. That is sick.

  156. gline Avatar

    *or evil I should say as “sick” as taking on a new positive connotation in the snowboarder world…

  157. Mike Avatar

    ++And, yep, there are alot of mental midgets out there doing this crap – just why one would want to kill bobcats and fox, escapes me.++

    No different than the ones who kill coyotes for fun. There is something inherently wrong with the people that do this.

  158. Mike Avatar

    For many people that do this, the coyote symbolizes everything they can’t control in their lives and their own general unhappiness. By shooting and killing the coyotes, they feel like they are exacting some sort of control over their unhappiness. What these people need is motivation and self guidance.

    The other half have simply never grown up or evolved as human beings. They are still that 11 year old kid curious about the woods and wondering how that animal will react if it has a rock thrown at it.

  159. gline Avatar

    I brought up the “dog” because that is what I’ve heard used re: killing coyotes, which is interesting because I wonder if they just need an excuse to kill a dog? Many people treat their pet dogs like trash, abuse them and kill them, why not a coyote? Except with coyotes you can use the tired excuse that there are too many coyotes, by having a derby you are actually controlling the population when science shows that just ain so. That kid throwing a rock at an animal to see what it would do needed to be educated… a long time ago.

  160. gline Avatar

    There was a kid in one of the photos from MonsterMuleys, my first thought was “wow he has lost a lot already….”

  161. Richie,NJ Avatar

    To Wilderness Muse;
    I do not think it is the area that we live is different, many people I grew up with in Brooklyn raised chickens,back then Brooklyn was all potato frams. I knew people who hated cats, burned them for fun I was too little to see this thank God. But I was brought up to love animals in general, stray dogs was big back then on my side of Brooklyn. I rather not go into the geography and the how and why and who was an animal lover and who wasn’t in my family. I have two very different blood lines, my last name does not show that. I grew around many dogs and cats, more dogs than cats. But the older I get the more feelings I have for other animals. I buy cage free eggs, organic milk etc,anything less stressfull on an animal. Last year I was reading an article in sciense times, how a wolf they tracked went over a couple thousand miles in one year,only to be killed by a hunter in the end. Now with a life on the run and all the hardship a wolf goes through their must be some compassion and some people who will take the side of the wolf,well I am one of them.

  162. Richie,NJ Avatar

    TO Gline;
    O.K. so they want power so they have control over something, get it.

  163. JB Avatar

    Si’vet says:

    “The coyote derby’s are held as fund raiser by outdoor organizations that are trying to improve wildlife and wildlife habitat.”

    Si’vet: Sportsmen for Fish & Wildlife is blatantly anti-predator. Here are a couple of quotes from the organization’s founder:

    “The return of wolves is the No. 1 issue facing sportsmen in the west…We don’t want wolves here.”

    From: http://nn.byu.edu/story.cfm/56452

    “[A wolf hunt to prevent recolonication in Utah is] absolutely critical and vital to protect the interests of the West’s ungulates [wildlife herds] and livestock.”

    From: http://www.sltrib.com/outdoors/ci_13241280

    “If you have uncontrolled wolf populations, they will drive game populations down significantly, to the point where hunters will have nothing left to hunt.”

    From: http://web.ksl.com/dump/news/cc/local/wolf_return.php

    Furthermore, if you can stomach it, go to SFW Wyoming’s website and check out the wolf “news.” (link: http://www.wysfw.org/wolve_news). You’ll note that other than a few articles on policy, they’ve assembled every negative story they can find about wolves.

    Don’t let people for this group fool you, they are anti-predator to the core. Their goal is to maximize big game populations and they view predators as a direct threat to achieving this goal. Period.

  164. Richie,NJ Avatar

    Very good Mike could not have said it better, and gline you are correct about people and pets.

  165. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse


    No, “a potato farm in Brooklyn” with a few chickens around is not a sheep, cattle or dairy operation in the West, the Mid-West or even the West Coast. You entirely missed the point of my post.

    Coyotes kill something like 225,000 sheep a year. Nearly 100,000 coyotes per year are killed in various predator control efforts across the country, and many of those kills are done by Wildlife Services. The balance, of course is by state agencies, and self-help of ranchers or predator hunters. Again, I do not know whether such control measures are effective in the long term. But coyotes do impact the economics of ranching/farming, which is why the control is done.

    Maybe you and Chicago Mike, the pontificator, could use a couple of years of hard labor on a ranch (again, compensation based on how well the ranch does). Of course, no federal grazing would be done on such an operation, which I also oppose.

  166. Maska Avatar

    What percentage of the coyotes killed by APHIS/WS are on public lands grazing allotments, for the benefit of public lands permittees?

  167. Richie,NJ Avatar

    To wildlife muse
    No I think you miss the point my friend their are ways to keep coyotes out without trying to kill every one of them.
    I know your out west is bigger than mind was. But people are the same all over the world, you have hateful ones and passionate ones. Yes I would like to work out west but do not like the idea of rasing animals to kill them,we see things different because partly because of our environment.I am sure their people who try to use different methods to stop coyotes who have passion, not many but some.Now the more you kill them the more they breed. New Jersey had a coon problem and they set food down to sterilize the raccoons, so please their are ways if you try hard enough.

  168. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    Wilderness Muse,

    You are right that coyotes pose a hardship on sheep operators. The fact that 100,000 (no doubt a broad estimate) are killed each year explains why the coyote has been so successful conquering the Continent. Of all the meso-predators (medium sized predators), the coyote has adapted to heavy human mortality pressure and benefited.

    The only way to effectively deal with coyotes at the level of a band of sheep is to leave them alone if they are not attacking sheep. General killing of them — non-selective — means that dead non-sheep killing pairs or packs are likely to be replaced by those that do kill sheep.

  169. Virginia Avatar

    Talks with Bears – no, I do not consume “animal meat.” I discontinued eating meat when I turned 30 and will not tell you how long ago that was. Yes, RichieNJ – I talk the talk and I “walk the walk.” I live my life based on the principle “do no harm.” Most people think I am nuts. My mother still tries to get me to eat her soup made with a beef soupbone. NO!

  170. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    Because the coyote has become an urban as well as rural (and suburban) animal, it seems that someone who lives in a city like Chicago and takes interest in the matter is as qualified, if not more qualified, to talk about coyotes than someone on a ranch who has grown up believing the mythology and stuck-in-the-past thinking of this reactionary segment of society.

    Dr. Jon Way, who writes of the Eastern coywolves, and does refereed research, knows more about them than anyone who posts to this blog, in my opinion

  171. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse


    That is an excellent question, and maybe the anwser is on the APHIS website or available in individual state reports. Maybe you can find it if you look.


    I am no fan of Wildlife Services or particularly the wet work tasks they perform. Here, however, is a recent study which suggest they are working on trying to come up with ways to manage coyote populations wherever they occur. The literature review there suggests that sterilization is not effective (racoons do not range like coyotes, for one thing). Somebody is working on this, you can be assured. However, different techniques are applied depending on location (large urban areas also have problems). But, for most aerial gunning seems to be method of choice, even though many of us find it distasteful.


    This particular study involves researchers at Utah State U. I know there are other studies going on at Utah state which look to wolves as a means to control coyotes (from a livestock perspective that may be one problem solved by creating yet another). And, it seems I read somewhere that reports out of Yellowstone showed that the presence of wolves reduced the coyote population by maybe a third to half. This is either thru killing them or depriving them of food, which affected reproduction. Not sure about those stats.

  172. jerryB Avatar

    Check out Camilla Fox’s organization.

  173. Richie,NJ Avatar

    again the more you kill the more they breed

  174. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Virginia – based on your answer, you have my respect.

  175. Taz Alago Avatar
    Taz Alago

    Comments have ranged far and wide here but back to the original stimulus, although this is now old news:

    Cabela’s is going ahead with derby sponsorships now and in the future. They feel that the hunts are legal both at the state and federal level and are justified for wildlife management. Their main business is hunting and fishing, protesters come second by a long shot. The discussion with one of their execs was was civil, but that’s the end of the argument. The exchange is confidential, otherwise I would post the emails. No surprise here. On to the next ruckus…

  176. Richie,NJ Avatar

    If you saying sterilization does not work because of the wide range,so open the area’s to put more down that’s it. So by choice aerial hunting is by far the best wow it took a college to say this yea right. No it is the easiest way to kill the animals not the best, but easiest. I know I can’t change BLM of this, but the truth is the truth.They hate the animals because they want all the deer and elk for themselves selfish motive a trait of human nature.

  177. josh sutherland Avatar
    josh sutherland

    Mike just curious where did you get your degree in physcology? You seem to be an expert in alot of things, those public schools in Chicago must be AMAZING!! Or maybe its all those nights in a tent out west? Your post never cease to amaze me with your broad generalizations about something you know nothing about. By the way I hunt coyotes, now thanks to your post I now have a future!! Give me a break. But of course I am a stupid redneck with no intelligence… 🙂

  178. Mike Avatar

    I hope you find peace, Josh.

  179. Lydia Avatar

    I have read some of the articles being published about the wolve kill and find it appalling that such beautiful animals are being killed for no apparent reason other than to lower the population. These animals are part of the eco system. In my review of other comments I noted several entries about what coyotes have done to different live stock and such.

    I do not agree with killing any animals just for the heck of it. Wolves are not to be hung on the wall or thrown on the floor for rugs. We have a lot to learn about wolves. Let’s study them but not eat them, kill them just for the sake of lowering the population. I find the whole notion of killing an animal just for the pleasure appalling and nauseating.

  180. josh sutherland Avatar
    josh sutherland

    Well Dr. Mike thats why I am approaching you, I need your help. 🙂 I actually have never been happier, got a gorgeous wife, a beautiful little girl and makin good money… never been better.

  181. gline Avatar

    Jerry- GREAT web for camilla’s work Thank you! Will be purchasing some of her books – new era for coexistence. Yes!!!

  182. gline Avatar

    richie: I admire YOUR tenacity!

  183. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Josh – please do not take up too much of the good Dr’s time. Once he is finished tuning you up he is going to give me a good education in economics. Set me straight, as they say.

  184. gline Avatar

    Nice sarcasm folks….

  185. josh sutherland Avatar
    josh sutherland

    As far as the derby is concerned I can understand why Nikon would pull out, makes good business sense for them, but Cabelas is a totally different story they will cater to hunters at all times, if they backed out they would see a boycott from the other side. Which would effect their bottom line far more than the non-hunting side boycotting.

  186. gline Avatar

    that would be nice.

  187. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    It may be nice, depending on which side of the issue you are on, but it is not going to happen..

  188. Linda Hunter Avatar

    For the past few years I have been reading everything I can find on predators, such as the coyote, and have come to the opinion that “management” is the last thing we need to do. Coyote populations will NOT explode without man’s interference. Dr. Jon Way’s research should be widely read and many persons who blog here should be aware of his work. In my own neighborhood the lack of coyotes causes too many insects. . the raccoons and skunks are the biggest predators there and they eat all the wild bird eggs and then we don’t have enough birds to eat the bugs. It is tiring to see the same old debates go on and on about the necessity of controlling nature without a knowledge base that goes past traditions.

  189. ProWolf in WY Avatar
    ProWolf in WY

    …if they backed out they would see a boycott from the other side.

    Most ethical hunters would not support a predator killing derby. Hunters need to be more vocal in a boycott of Cabela’s.

  190. liza Avatar

    Ralph, you just couldn’t post the real truth about the predator derby or the dedication and hard work the SFW folks do for ALL wildlife, and where the proceeds go.. hmm could it have been a finacial decision on your part??? Slinging mud sells just like the tabloids, maybe you should print and sell it at the check out counter.

  191. josh sutherland Avatar
    josh sutherland

    Prowolf it is not an “ethical issue” I would say its more of a “moral issue”. To alot of hunters this type of stuff is very normal, to others its not.

  192. Taz Alago Avatar
    Taz Alago

    Here’s the official Cabela’s response to protests against the predator derby:

    “Cabela’s supports all legal hunting and fishing practices and stands beside the opinion of the state and federal wildlife agencies which rely on hunters and anglers to manage fish and wildlife populations. Predator hunting is an accepted and common method for managing game populations. We respect our customers’ right to engage in any legal method of outdoor recreation, including competitions designed to encourage participation in the sporting heritage.

    We have been in contact with the Idaho Department of Fish and Game and Idaho Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife and have been assured all participants in the SFWI Predator Derby are required to follow all laws concerning the taking of game, including seasons, quotas, license and tag requirements where applicable.

    We respect your opinion and hope you understand our position.”

  193. ProWolf in WY Avatar
    ProWolf in WY

    Josh, regardless of which word to use (an I’m not arguing that point), any hunters who disagree with this should boycott Cabela’s and Sportsmen’s Warehouse for sponsoring this event.

  194. Mike Avatar

    That’s absolutely correct. Hunters who stand by and let this slide are condoning this behavior. Their inaction allows this to continue and helps drag their sport down to the bottom which is exatly where it’s heading.

  195. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Mike – Cabela’s point is clear. And unlike you Mike, they have the law (legal seasons) and the tradition of wildlife/predator management on their side.

  196. Ralph Maughan Avatar

    liza on December 2, 2009 at 9:49 PM wrote:

    “Ralph, you just couldn’t post the real truth about the predator derby or the dedication and hard work the SFW folks do for ALL wildlife, and where the proceeds go.. hmm could it have been a finacial decision on your part??? Slinging mud sells just like the tabloids, maybe you should print and sell it at the check out counter.”
    – – – –
    Liza, the real truth is that SFW does work on some habitat projects for a few species of big game. I don’t know perhaps they do something for waterfowl, upland birds, and game fish. That is hardly all wildlife.

    Their failure to confront political power that promotes habitat destroying projects, from cattle to energy developments, sucks the life out of sportsman as an effective political force for wildlife as a whole, or even for a few species.

    This blog is free. It has no advertisements nor subsidies from other organizations or people. I have made no money on it, nor am I interested in any donations for it or other things of material value.

  197. Mike Avatar

    Thanks for finally showing your support for thrill kill hunting, Talks with Bears. I knew you would show your true colors eventually.

  198. william huard Avatar
    william huard

    Talkswithbears- you are right these “sportsmen” have the law, and that’s why they hold these events. The first thing that needs to happen is the stoneage wildlife management practices in Idaho need to come in line with 21st century thought. “and they have the tradition of wildlife/predator management”. Hmm. Explain to me just how a thrill kill event like this even remotely resembles wildlife management? I find it humorous that the degenerates at SFW have now spin this event as a wildlife management tool!!!!!! That is a good one!!!!

  199. JB Avatar

    Liza wrote: “Ralph, you just couldn’t post the real truth about the predator derby or the dedication and hard work the SFW folks do for ALL wildlife…”

    Don Peay, founder of SFW wrote: “The return of wolves is the No. 1 issue facing sportsmen in the west…We don’t want wolves here” (From: http://nn.byu.edu/story.cfm/56452).

    Liza: Your contention that SFW is interested in ALL wildlife is profoundly misinformed. They are only interested in maximizing the populations of the species they hunt. Any benefit that might be accrued by non-game wildlife is purely a bi-product of this effort.

    If song birds were suddenly shown to negatively impact elk, SFW would be wailing for a repeal of the Migratory Bird Treaty and the “control” of offending species. In my view, they represent everything that is wrong with hunting.

    Hunting used to be a tool to regulate take and ensure the conservation of a species. Now hunting itself has become the goal, and to hell with any non-game species that gets in the way.

  200. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    William – wildlife management – in short, an effort to provide habitat and control populations. Predator control is clearly part of wildlife management. And William, you are welcome to educate me on New Age wildlife management (I have no knowledge of what that is but, unlike some here am willing to learn) however, considering the legal issues and support this event has received from the state of Idaho, maybe you need to educate them.

  201. Dusty Roads Avatar
    Dusty Roads

    Excuse me but it says, quite clearly, in the derby announcement that:

    “Proceeds will go towards ‘Idaho Sportsmen’s Wolf Litigation Fund”

    I don’t see where there’s any question about the intent here.

  202. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Mike – true colors, you my brother – all you are is anti-hunting – every chance you get, you attempt to tie illegal activity (poaching) to hunting. And now, you have attempted to demonize a legal hunting activity and the people that participate in the legal activity. Mike, you have been outed.

  203. Mike Avatar

    Talks With Bears –

    You are jumping the gun there. I’m friends with hunters. Manyof my site readers are hunters. What I don’t do is placate or enable the unethical corners of the sport like you do. 😉

  204. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Mike – squall all you want – you have been outed, well, by you.

  205. Si'vet Avatar

    I’m sorry Ralph wouldn’t post my original note that, Liza has read and was responding to. Through there actions, birds as well as game have benefited. No SFW hasn’t jumped on the public land grazing issue, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t are working on securing habitat . Check out fencing along I 15, that fence will keep deer off the freeway, the lack of deer carcasses keeps coyote, ravens and eagles off the freeway. As I stated earlier, I’ve know Sean Mottishaw for 20 yrs. and I can never remember him harvesting a big game animal. He works and raises money that again benefits wildlife. Yes some of the funds go to wolf litigation, people who aren’t pro – wolf have a right to be heard as well. Ralph post my original message so some of the truth about SFW can be heard.. PS: I am not a long standing SFW memeber, I am just an observer.

  206. Linda Hunter Avatar

    Talks with bears you cannot end a discussion by calling someone anti-hunting as if the were a sin or something. . in order for people to learn and grow by discussion all views should be honored and just because something has the law on it’s side that doesn’t make it moral or right. Things that need to be adjusted and fixed in our society often have the law on their side. I do not consider myself anti hunting but I do believe that it is time for hunters and non hunters to adjust the traditions and laws of hunting to reflect the current concerns and number of humans on the planet to reach an equatable situation for people and ALL animals. These discussions on this blog are important not a venue for calling someone names and dismissing their ideas that way.

  207. Ralph Maughan Avatar


    I’m not aware of your original post. Every day some posts end up in the spambox, courtesy of WordPress’ algorithm for detecting spam. Yesterday, JB did a lot of work gathering links about SFW. Late last night I found it improperly in spam. I took it out, but by then it was deeply buried among other comments.
    – – – –
    Those who have worked on fencing the highways and directing deer and elk to underpasses made for them deserve credit.

    When the highway was first built over Fish Creek Summit in the 1970s, I was involved in making sure underpasses were built for the deer. Over time the fencing decayed. Those who are working to restore and improve that dangerous highway deserve credit and help for their effort.

    I’ve never meet Mr. Mottishaw. It is quite possible folks can disagree with a person on one or more things, and agree with them on others. He might be such a person.

  208. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Linda – please, Mike has his expressed his opinions and evaluations of entire groups of people for quite some time, and he has every right to do just that. Anti-hunting is not a “name” to be called any more than someone like myself “pro-hunting” is a name to be called – I wear it proudly. In addition, my original post was just to simply point out that the derby is in fact a legal activity. Linda, if you would like to mentor people on manners as you see it, then you have a long list of folks to work on – maybe start with Mike?

  209. Layton Avatar


    ” I do not consider myself anti hunting but I do believe that it is time for hunters and non hunters to adjust the traditions and laws of hunting to reflect the current concerns and number of humans on the planet to reach an equatable situation for people and ALL animals.”

    Do you have any examples of (what you consider) ways to “adjust the traditions” that would be satisfactory in you mind AND still allow those of us that enjoy hunting to pursue that interest?

  210. Si'vet Avatar

    Ralph, you have met big Sean, I was at a meeting when he didn’t articulate well the questions he asked you, I thought you were polite in answering his questions even though the 2 of you didn’t agree. Houard I know on another web page you said you were 6’4″ 225 and worked out 4 times a week. Sean is 6’5″ 275 and hammered college quarterbacks for 4 yrs. I know for a fact that if you ever came out to Idaho, he would load you in is truck buy you a coffee, take you out and show you the fencing projects, his bird surrogators, the farmers and ranchers he has met and convinced to change some of there farming practices, to protect upland game and small animals. You would need lot’s of time if he were to show you all the doors he’s banged on to try and get funds to support these projects. The coyote derby is a fund raiser, we go spend money, buy raffle tickets etc. generate money, and the sucess rate is about 13%. Yes wolves are a big issue with hunting organizations. I am a hunter and I hunt predators as well, they are by far the toughest. I’m not angry, have 4 educated and very successful children, just last year we rescued fostered and turned in 7 abused or abandoned dogs to the shelter, to the demise of our living room carpet, I don’t hate dogs or coyotes. Both pro – and non pro wolf people have individuals who say and do things that are not acceptable. Right now wolves are high on everyones agenda pro or not. It is fearful for bothsides, and highly emotional. The comment that coyote populations will control themselves, is somewhat true, once they get to a certain level sacoptic mange generally ravages there numbers,,,, or in comes the goverment. As a side note the coyotes harvested at the recent derby, the majority were in the mid to later stages of mange, I have those brutal photo’s . As you all know wolves will not be controlling coyote populations on or near these private land areas. Again I am not a long standing memeber of SFW, but I am an observer and have watched some of the things they accomplish that doesn’t make the big headlines.

  211. Mike Avatar

    One of the first “traditions” that needs to go is trapping. There’s simply no use for it in a populated world. This is the first step towards a modern, ethical hunting.

    Eating cat and dog was also a tradition for somey countries, and that is now being phased out around the world. Cultures also used to sacrifice humans to supposed Gods for “tradition” too. “Tradition” is a meaningless descriptor. You cannot quantify anything with it, nor determine what is wright or wrong by it.

  212. josh sutherland Avatar
    josh sutherland

    Mike you did the classic anti comment to try and make us pro hunters feel you understand where we are coming from. You spout anti stuff non-stop on this blog and as soon as someone calls you on it you pull the classic “I have many friends who are hunters”….. Classic 🙂 Hope you dont talk to them like you talk to us…

  213. catbestland Avatar


    I agree with your assessment that tradition should not be used as an argument for hunting rights. Many practices that were once considered “traditional” are now considered barbaric and inhumane.

    Dog fighting and cock fighting were once considered “traditional” in the south and are now illegal because of the cruelty involved. Bull fights are “traditional” in Spain but the rest of the world considers the sport barbaric. Just because some forms of hunting are traditional and legal in an area doesn’t mean it is moral or healthy.

    In my view, trophy hunting which serves no purpose at all except to satiate blood lust and is considered barbaric by most of the world is one of those “traditions” that needs to be adjusted.

  214. Linda Hunter Avatar

    Layton that is a very reasonable question. I would love to see the market for hunting gear portray hunters in better light, for instance, that hunters need to be fit and athletic to hunt properly. Talking to a hunting guide from Montana at dinner the other night he told me that in the years he guided about 10% of the hunters were able to do the physical tasks necessary to hunt successfully. His stories were all anecdotal but outlined some of the concerns I have. It seems in America our morals have become market driven and visa versa. If the marketing for hunters shows fit and capable hunters who use their skill and knowledge to augment the tools they buy instead of the tools such as ATV’s being a way to circumvent the lack of shape they are in . . well it would go a long way towards our society being able to tolerate hunting as part of life. That is just one example. Every time some tragedy happens like the 14 year old who shot a woman he thought was a black bear in Washington State on August 1, the opening day of bear season here, it takes a lot of press, marketing in the right way to overcome the negative feelings that develop about hunting. I wish that some powerful group or market entity would make it a goal to bring hunting back into a favorable light for everyone by changing the image to a better one. Instead, I see guys tricked out with all the latest electronics, rifles, in trucks or ATV’s as accepted as NORMAL. That can’t help hunting. Having a coyote derby or shooting animals in a pen doesn’t help either. It is not about the killing and it should be about the hunting . . the active pursuit of animals to eat using woodman’s skills, tracking, and knowledge of the animal, it’s lifestyle and habits by a person who trains for it, mentally and physically.

  215. Taz Alago Avatar
    Taz Alago

    Layton –

    No one can realistically expect to stop hunting. Even those posters here who castigate hunters and hunting know that.

    It’s certainly reasonable to hunt game that you eat, and sometimes in some places some predators will need to be hunted.

    I think hunting licenses, seasons and limits should be required for all species. I think predator hunting should be limited to those areas where they have CLEARLY become a problem, keeping in mind studies showing their beneficial effects on prey species and local ecologies, and the fact that some species, like coyotes, breed more when under hunting pressure. I think the larger, stronger individuals should be protected rather than targeted by trophy hunters. I think, in the name of sportsmanship and fairness, hunters should be encouraged to know more about the animals they hunt and to grant them more respect than they receive now, especially predators which are commonly regarded with contempt and dislike. I think the predator-prey dynamic should be explained forcefully in state-sponsored hunting literature and cooperative educational programs with hunting groups.

    However, Layton, I doubt you would agree with me on even a single issue.

  216. Ralph Maughan Avatar


    Thanks for introduction and information about Sean Mottishaw. Now I remember him. Yes, a big fellow.

    You said “if you ever came out to Idaho.” You might not realize I live in Pocatello, and have lived in Idaho and Utah all my life, except for 4 years.

    That the local coyotes here have mange is important information. I live close to the mountains, and we are, in my opinion, getting a terrible feral domestic cat problem in the neighbored. In the past we have counted on coyotes coming through and knocking their numbers down, but it hasn’t happened. Because hunting access is poor in the immediate mountains behind us, I guess mange might have already taken its toll.

  217. Ralph Maughan Avatar


    I certainly appreciate your statements about being fit. I am fit, and exercise (work out) or hike pretty much every day. I’ve actually been criticized for being in shape. I guess among some that is now an abnormal condition!

  218. josh sutherland Avatar
    josh sutherland

    Linda I have yet to see an advertisement showing fat out of shape hunters. If you are sick of ATV’s advertisement you need to contact Honda, Polaris etc.

    Taz I dont know if you are a hunter or not but I will answer some of your questions. First off becoming educated about a species is something that is obviously done by hunters each year. If a hunter expects to be successful then obviously they must know how deer/elk behave as far as feeding, bedding grounds escape routes etc.

    As far as mature animals, are you going to require that every hunter shoot a yearling deer/elk? What will that do to long term population dynamics? Will that lead to having a very old elk/deer population with very few young animals? What would be the effects of that over time? Would calf/fawn ratios be effected because of older females being more prevalent in the herd? What if I like the challenge of hunting and killing a mature animal and dont want to drive out and shoot the first deer that I see?

  219. Si'vet Avatar

    Ralph, the comment on coming to Idaho and spending a day with Sean was meant for Houard and some of the others, I know you live here. FYI 2 areas within 150 miles of us have mange issues. Ah yes the feral cat issues here, a whole other ball of wax. I and several others resorted to live trapping them and burying the local shelter at times. Unlike skunks, coons etc. you just can’t relocate. Another example of why some should not be allowed to have pets or children. PS I have not seen mange in our county yet this year. Will post you if I do.

  220. Layton Avatar


    Aren’t you confusing marketing “hype” and the real world??

    Maybe there are some folks that really fit the image that you speak of (atv’s, gps’, and all the other crap). I don’t see that guy when I’m in the hills, maybe he exists, but not where I go.

    Yep, some folks go hunting that shouldn’t because of the shape they’re in. the same thing goes for fishing or bird watching tho’. When I was guiding fishermen in Alaska, I had clients that couldn’t fling a fly for more than 3 hours in a day. Hell, I liked it, I was back at the lodge before lunch!!

    BUT, I don’t see how the fact that people are out of shape will “adjust the traditions and laws of hunting to reflect the current concerns and number of humans on the planet”.

    I don’t think you can pass a law that says you have to walk 3 miles in 45 min. with 50 lbs. on your back to go hunting. Yes, an example, that’s the “strenuous” pack test for wildland firefighters.

    “It seems in America our morals have become market driven and visa versa.”

    I guess I agree with that , but I’m not sure I see the connection between marketing driven morals and hunting. Yes, some of the more radical folks here would probably say hunting is immoral, but IMHO they are a bit “out there”.

  221. Layton Avatar


    “One of the first “traditions” that needs to go is trapping. There’s simply no use for it in a populated world. This is the first step towards a modern, ethical hunting.”


    I guess someone that wants a fur coat wouldn’t necessarily agree with you on that point.

    No, I don’t wear fur, but I also don’t presume to try and dictate to the world whether they should or not. Plus that hunting (which I think we are talking about here) and trapping are pretty much separate things. Eliminating trapping would just be the beginning of trying to eliminate hunting.

    Face it pardner, the ONLY way to appease you with your view of hunting and hunters is to knock the whole thing off, I don’t consider that a viable solution.

    Just as an aside Mike, are you a vegan or vegetarian?

  222. gline Avatar

    Layton: Trapping is a cruel inhumane unethical practice. It needs to be banned in all states and already is in some. I should have known you would defend a trapper.

  223. Layton Avatar


    “I think hunting licenses, seasons and limits should be required for all species”

    They pretty much are right now — of course you are talking about predators and varmits I assume. I would submit that when the number of them or their survival becomes a problem, something WILL be done the other way. Right now they are assumed to BE a problem with their actions toward other species.

    “I think, in the name of sportsmanship and fairness, hunters should be encouraged to know more about the animals they hunt and to grant them more respect than they receive now, especially predators which are commonly regarded with contempt and dislike”

    I’m not to sure how you will enforce this respect thing. Are you going to make hunters sign a pledge to “like or respect” coyotes?? I don’t mean to sound sarcastic here, but I don’t know how else to put it.

    “However, Layton, I doubt you would agree with me on even a single issue.”

    Actually we were doing pretty well until you got to the part about leaving the big ones alone, after that we pretty much have to agree to disagree.

  224. Taz Alago Avatar
    Taz Alago

    Layton –

    “I’m not to sure how you will enforce this respect thing.”

    The only feasible way is through education. Long process but it would get there in the end, I hope. Certainly worth a try.

    “Right now they are assumed to BE a problem with their actions toward other species.” Right, but I don’t think they are as widespread or as dire a problem as is assumed. There’s a growing body of laymen and experts that agree with me.

    “Actually we were doing pretty well until you got to the part about leaving the big ones alone, after that we pretty much have to agree to disagree.” I’m pleased we agree on some points. Point is with trophy hunts, how can it not have the effect of breeding for smaller individuals and probably less evolutionarily desirable traits re: disease resistance, etc. Personally, I don’t care if animals get smaller if it’s to their benefit, but when it’s artificially imposed it makes me a little uncomfortable. Predators generally take the weakest and most vulnerable. Humans tend to do the opposite. There’s a certain grandeur about large animals that I would miss.

    Re: trapping, that’s a pretty tattered banner about an attack on trapping being the prelude to an attack on hunting. For the 15,000the time, it’s the manner of killing that offends, not necessarily the actual killing itself. You might not, but I surely would dictate whether a person should wear fur or not. Today there are artificial furs that imitate the real thing almost perfectly. Fur is a vanity choice. I’m damned if I can see why an animal should suffer the death of the average harvested fur-bearer to please someone’s vanity. I’m not a bleeding heart but the fur trapping and fur farming industries curdle my blood.

    Enough said. Now I’m going out and track a cougar, maybe say hi.

  225. catbestland Avatar

    Layton said,

    Right now they (predators) are assumed to BE a problem with their actions toward other species.

    This is the problem in a nutshell. It should not be “assumed” that predators are a problem. They are an integral part of the ecosystems and deserve to be considered as such. They are only a problem to those who wish to exploit the natural world. In that population’s view, if predators interfere with their (private interests) ability of to profit from public natural resources, then they should be removed. How unfair is that to everyone else including predators?

  226. Layton Avatar


    “They are only a problem to those who wish to exploit the natural world”

    Is me going out to get a deer or an elk to feed me and my family “exploiting” the natural world??

    If it is I’m guilty as charged – if it isn’t then I think your point is invalid. If the predator population is interfering with the population of the animals that I hunt for food, I’m probably going to interfere with them at every opportunity.

  227. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    Actually if I remember correctly, one of the studies done in Yellowstone showed that the major cause of death for big bulls was the wolves? I seem to remember reading that somewhere…

  228. Layton Avatar


    ” Point is with trophy hunts, how can it not have the effect of breeding for smaller individuals and probably less evolutionarily desirable traits”

    Actually there is something called QDM – stands for Quality Deer Management – which is becoming quite popular, especially in some of the Southern States where the most widely hunted specie is Whitetails.

    In a nutshell it says, take smaller, younger bucks (and some does) and bucks that don’t fit the genetic traits that they want and let the good ones grow up to spread their genetics. That way the deer herd will eventually consist of larger, higher quality animals.

    I’m not what one would call a trophy hunter tho’ with me it’s usually the first legal one i see that gets to go see my freezer. I don’t think that effects the gene pool one way or another.

  229. Layton Avatar

    Save Bears,

    If you memory is failing, mine is too. The same way.

    Actually that study indicated that big bulls, after the rut and prior to the next spring “greenup” were favored prey for the wolves because of the weight/strength they lose during the rut.

    I guess chasing cows and fighting has a downside. 8)

  230. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    Actually the only reason I mentioned it, was because the statement was made that wolves only take the smaller and weaker animals, but I would not call a 6 or 7 point bull the smaller animals, so they do indeed capitalize because of circumstances to do their own type of trophy hunting, they wait until the opportunity presents itself and then take the bulls….

    Save Bears,

    A big elk bull, weak from fighting and maybe bleeding, is one of the weaker animals. Ralph Maughan

  231. Ralph Maughan Avatar


    You can read the annual Yellowstone wolf reports on line. My impression, because I haven’t read it lately, is that the wolves winter prey, varies a lot from winter to winter. Sometime it is disproportionately bulls; other times cows, especially old ones.

  232. josh sutherland Avatar
    josh sutherland

    Taz you never answered my question. If we are to have hunters target younger elk/deer what will that do to the dynamics of their populations? You would have an age heavy top end, with fewer young animals entering the populations. What effects do you feel that would have long term?

  233. Richie,NJ Avatar

    I guess nobody can afford to buy meat from a supermarket ?

  234. Richie,NJ Avatar

    wow, how do you afford the electricity for the freezer,just bury it in the ground,it’s cold enough.

  235. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears


    Many can, I can’t live very well if I have to depend on buying meat from the market, I eat over 95% wild meat year around, we also run on Solar as well as generator, but again, wild meat is a very important part of our diet, and no, I don’t trophy hunt, I hunt for meat, I would much rather have a nice fat cow elk over a 7 point bull, better eating…

  236. Dawn Avatar

    Alright gotta tell I went on one of the links about the derby and got a virus called Security Tool, so be careful, bitch to get rid of !

  237. Salle Avatar


    Thanks for the warning.

  238. Nathan Hobbs Avatar
    Nathan Hobbs

    What link? dA is usually really good about removing advertisers on there site that try to pull that off I will let someone I know that Administrates the site know about it. Sorry. 🙁 dA can be a crazy place at times but the audience it reaches is in the millions and very motivated to get involved. It has been a fun experience talking about issues of the west on that website and raising awareness.

    So many issues we discuss here on this Ralph’s blog are all about awareness, when the public learns about them they are outraged. The secrecy of WS, the covertness of Predator Derbies and many other black-ops practices that occur out here if you can break the story they will take action and the sound of the public opinion is astounding…in fact here is a little fact Next years ISFW predator derby is said to be invite by email only and will not have a online presence on there website. (we need to get those details via covert means)

  239. Taz Alago Avatar
    Taz Alago

    Yo Josh – Sorry, I didn’t see your question above. I think most large predators target the young the weak and the old, and I guess from above also tired bulls who just can’t get enough. So I think hunters should mimic natural predation. I guess that’s similar to the QDM program Layton mentioned. The western states should adopt that program with all the big game species. It would also help if the F&W agencies were funded from state treasuries and not directly from licenses and fees, thus lessening the incentive to maximize herd numbers at the expense of other species.

    I think we need the natural predators to maintain land health and game health. When Layton talks about predator populations interfering with the animals he hunts for food, he’s being a tad facetious I think. If he was a hunter-gatherer like Save Bears he would be more credible, but 99.9% of hunters today hunt for fun and the meat is just icing on the cake. In fact, it’s the hunters who are interfering with the animals the predators hunt for food. What’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander.

  240. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse

    SB, Layton, Ralph and all,

    Since the subject came up again about wolves taking only the weak, injured or old animals, here is one report for you all to read on the topic. This a Yellowstone study and the lead and second authors are known to most of the wolf crowd, Dan Stahler and Doug Smith. I think I referenced it before on another thread. Here is the report of the study.


    There is some very good basic wolf nutrition stuff, and since it only covers 1995-2004, before the wolf population really took off there is probably alot more to tell that is not in the report. For example, it would not be unreasonable to assert that there would not be more weak, old, young or injured elk for them to feed on absent other variables like bad winters or forage years. So they would have to take even more of the healthy elk,…..or they create weak elk, in addition to those big old rut tired bulls.

    And if the recently released work of Scott Creel at U of Montana is to be believed, the wolves themselves create weaker, leaner, more stressed elk by running them and keeping them at higher elevation, on steeper ground and away from more nutritious grazing and winter habitat. This also results in fewer successful pregnancies, because calves have lower birth weights.

  241. josh sutherland Avatar
    josh sutherland

    Taz the reason that I asked that question is because hunting units are already being managed that way, and have been for quite awhile. They are called “limited-entry units” where tag numbers are limited and you will see larger more mature animals. Some elk units in UT are managed for an age class of over 6-7 years of age for bulls in the unit. That is very high. And bull to cow ratios are sometimes as high as 35-100. Thats my main gripe, people like yourself complain about how things are ran, but you dont even know what systems are in place now and you gather your hunting information from sites like this, I enjoy Ralphs blog, but when you have people like Mike and Cat and others telling their “truths” about hunting its easy to see why someone who is not familiar would think all hunters ride ATV’s, drink beer and poach.

    As for you saying you want hunters to mimic predators you stated young and old die. Old elk/deer are the “trophy” animals that I like to hunt. But as far as the effects of lots of young animals being killed, just look at YNP northern herd, the average cow is like 8.5 years old. You have one bad drought year followed by a hard winter and you will see lots of elk dying. I would like to see managment somewhere in the middle.

  242. Roy Vanderleelie Avatar
    Roy Vanderleelie

    I am glad to read these posts about these so-called sportsmen. I wrote that organization when I found out about their “derby” and told them to volunteer for service in Afghanistan to hunt and kill the Taliban but that not many of them would volunteer because the Taliban shoots back. I think it is disgusting what they do and I agree with one post in which they were compared to the Nazis. Thank you all for speaking up and I know that together we can make a difference.

  243. Cobra Avatar

    There are a lot of people here that hunt for the meat because they can’t afford the meat in the store not to mention te fact that by killing and butchering our own meat we know what we’re getting. Meat from the store sucks. Last year we thought we would live it up and bought a roast from the store, worst piece of meat I’ve ever had, in fact we couldn’t eat it and should of just had an elk roast from the freezer.
    I’d like to see proof that 99.9% of the hunters just hunt for sport. Sure all of us love to hunt and be in the woods but I can assure you that most people I know up here hunt for the meat, especially now with the economy in the shape it’s in. More people canning, hunting, and harvesting berries and anything else that can be kept and eaten through the winter hoping the summer brings better times.

  244. Taz Alago Avatar
    Taz Alago

    Well Cobra, you got me. Of course I can’t prove 99.9% hunt for fun. How about 91%? I can’t tell you how many hunters, and on this site too, have told me that they didn’t get lucky but that was ok because they had fun anyway. I guess I should have said that for 91% of hunters the meat is not crucial. I understand that right now wild meat is more important to some than in the recent past, however.

    Josh – Yeah, you’re right. I’m not up on the hunts quotas in all the Western states. I hope those harvest policies are applied to all units in all states.

    I’ll have to read that study Wilderness Muse mentions, but not tonight.

  245. ProWolf in WY Avatar
    ProWolf in WY

    I guess I should have said that for 91% of hunters the meat is not crucial.

    I think that is probably the case.

  246. Cobra Avatar

    We always have fun hunting and a kill is a huge bonus and we work hard for that bonus. I was raised on wild game and have raised four kids on wild game. There were times at the table that the kids like most kids did not want to eat what they had taken for dinner, the rule was they had to at least eat the meat they had taken. If that animal gave it’s life for us we will damn sure make use of it and not waste it. I’m sure they probably snuck some to the dog but it seemed to sink in and they appreciated what they had on their plate. I think it might have helped them to have a little more respect for the animal. One thing I have noticed, when the kids left for college some of the meat from the freezer seemed to be missing, same when they come home for a visit.
    I didn’t really post just to get you and I still feel 91% is high for certain geographic areas. Even if they hunt for sport and utilize the game they’ve taken whether for themselves or donations to hunters for the hungry or similar programs as long as it’s not wasted is my main concern.

  247. ProWolf in WY Avatar
    ProWolf in WY

    as long as it’s not wasted is my main concern.

    I will always respect that over the people who take only antlers and/or heads.

  248. Si'vet Avatar

    Taz, your right a lot of folks hunt for enjoyment, and some are trophy hunters, meaning: if they aren’t successful in finding that truly mature animal your after you go home tired and empty handed and happy. Amazingly enough I drew a tag in a unit that holds some really good mature animals, after looking at 96 bucks (only counting 4 point) we sat on a ridge and watched the deer of a life time chase some does while the sun set on the season, my son and I looked at each other and agreed it had been a hell of a great season. Of the less than 200 tags issued for this area there were 70 others who elected to watch that sunset with there tag in their wallet.. Now that’s hunting, for those of you hunt for the meat I wish you the very best. For those of you hunt because you need the meat my thoughts are with you that times will improve. Thank goodness there are organizations out there helping to sustain our wildlife so you can utilize it during these times..

  249. Richie,NJ Avatar

    To Save Bears;
    I am glad you hunt for food that is honest answer and by me a great one. But I just believe a wolf has a very hard life if they have a bad leg they have to endure,not like people who have planes, helicopters etc. I just have a great deal of a big heart for wolves,coyotes,bears, not analytical but just a big heart call it what you will,it is just me. I explained why a while ago so hunting for food is very good in my opinion.

  250. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse

    Taz and ProWolf

    Speculation that something like 91-99.9% of hunters hunt just for fun (the meat is not crucial), rather than the reward of having a bounty from the hunt, is probably wrong by a significant percentage. These are tough questions to answer.

    I would not venture a guess on this, and look to Ralph and JB, our resident social scientists for answers. Study design to obtain hunter preferences is complex. The answers to key questions may vary by geographic region, economic status of the hunter, game to be hunted, preferences for eating wild game over grocery store meat selections, resident or non-resident status, likelihood of success in getting game (think wolf impacts here), access to productive hunting areas, and it likely changes over time. These are just a few of the variables social scientists look at – there are undoubtedly more.

    For example, I know many people who seek cow elk tags (drawing for tags required in some states) to ensure the freezer is full. I have done this in the past, myself. It is not always about “trophy” hunting (neverhas been for me) as some on this blog seem to think. Furthermore, given the economy, I would bet in some states where unemployment is high, there is a greater amount of poaching now than in past years (deer, elk, birds, and the occasional cow or sheep that disappears from the ranch). And, I know for sure that some illegal aliens engage in the practice regularly. This may continue in places for awhile.

    You certainly are entitled to your opinion, uninformed as you seem to be on the topic. I think you might just be wrong by a significant margin.

  251. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse

    A bit off topic, but important nonetheless, regarding wolf-ungulate interactions. Draw your own conclusions:

    “Big game animals scarce in once-popular hunting district along Gallatin River,” Brett French, BG staff reporter.


    See last heading “Predator Dilemma”

  252. Ralph Maughan Avatar
    Ralph Maughan

    They probably need to decrease the number of black bears in the area.

    The wolf packs come and go. With fewer elk, the wolves will move, and/or the packs decrease in size and disintegrate. Unlike bears, wolves only eat meat, The wolves can’t stay there with only 300 elk.

  253. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    WM – I attended the meeting last night – a real eye opener for me – when you see on paper 60 years of data on this elk herd and what has happened in such a short time with the wolf reintroduction – powerful facts.

  254. Layton Avatar


    “When Layton talks about predator populations interfering with the animals he hunts for food, he’s being a tad facetious I think. If he was a hunter-gatherer like Save Bears he would be more credible,”

    Huh??? You have me COMPLETELY lost. Can you explain a bit??

  255. Layton Avatar


    “I wrote that organization when I found out about their “derby” and told them to volunteer for service in Afghanistan to hunt and kill the Taliban but that not many of them would volunteer because the Taliban shoots back.”

    What in the HELL does one have to do with the other?? Besides that, at least several of us that frequent this blog have BEEN where “they shoot back” have you or do you just talk a lot??

  256. gline Avatar

    At the end of the article, positioned just so:
    “Recreational use of the drainage by snowmobilers has been blamed by some for fewer wintering elk, but Cunningham said she’s not pointing any fingers.”

    -Just pointing fingers at wolves, however, which seems to be accepted. It would be interesting to find the stats on surrounding areas to see if Elk numbers have risen in comparison/contrast with hunting quota, private land, snowmobiling, bears, etc.

  257. gline Avatar

    So now you have to be in Iraq to have an opinion on it? Wow Layton you are quite loud on the blog with capital letters and exclamation points. You are quite loud.

  258. gline Avatar

    Actually I’ve been thinking about this a bit about this blog while I am doing other things in life to function… There is an interesting parallel between those on this blog that have been to Iraq and shot back and the attitudes toward predators. Kind of like the war brought home to wildlife? just a thought.

  259. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Gline – so interesting, when the data shows the tremendous impact that wolves have on other wildlife and the wildlife/human interface you and others want to find any issue to remove credit for the wolves. I thought you were proud that they are powerful predators??? I am giving them the credit they are due – to kill most of an elk herd or force them out of their traditional home range – something human hunters could not do in 56 years of data – incredible. Step up and be proud of the wolves.

  260. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Gline – you are on a roll – people have opinions you don’t like, you blame America’s combat veterans. Please reconsider your statements – this is very disturbing.

  261. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    I am a veteran. not of Iraq. that was not the first or last armed conflict in America although the reasons we are there are almost certainly the most bogus in the history of armed conflict.

  262. gline Avatar

    jeff E : Where did I mention that was not the first or last armed conflict in America?

  263. gline Avatar

    Talks with Bears: You of all people are not the one to ask me to reconsider my thoughts. Which are thoughts, not blame. I see a correlation. It may benefit as a whole society to think about the effects of violence not just war but in other ways. Ware is disturbing Talks with Bears.

  264. gline Avatar

    *War – not ware

  265. gline Avatar

    NM jeff e i see what you are saying

  266. Mike Avatar

    Gline, don’t you realize it? You can only have an opinion on wildlife if you shoot it. That’s what makes you an “expert”.

  267. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    if you look over your posts to layton and then consider what you know about Layton, well to say he was in Iraq would be somewhat of a naive statement.
    Hell, he is probably more adept with a Brown Bess than a MP5.
    Anyway, as a vet, I think you assume too much.

  268. gline Avatar

    Talks with Bears: you are quite the conversationalist. Quite entertaining really. My point with the Billings Gazette article is the blame on wolves for decimating Elk populations. Same old tired argument for this part of MT. We all know the real facts, some of us just like to scapegoat more than others. Fact: Wolves are needed by us and also have a right to exist here.
    Ralph, since this is wildlife blog, do you have any positive , interesting news on wolves? Bear wolf interaction? I was reading on Nabeki’s site about the black color mutation given to wolves by dogs 16,000 years ago… quite interesting.
    -I think there was Elk 16,000 ago? ungulates to be sure.:)

  269. Wilderness Muse Avatar
    Wilderness Muse

    Talks with Bears

    Any specific observations or comment from the meeting last night worth sharing here?

  270. gline Avatar

    Well Jeff E talking about assumptions… I did not specifically mention “Layton” on the above thread.

  271. gline Avatar

    I knew I would get some extreme defensiveness and probably retaliation about the vet issue. Not all of us are vets. It would be good to think about the possible correlation re: killing wildlife/violence/war etc for your own childrens’ benefit. Just a thought (since I live here in this country) as I said. Not an assumption. Can you see the difference? I am not being sarcastic – maybe just too philosophical for this blog.

  272. gline Avatar

    Oh hey Mike saw you sentence. You are so subtle but loud in your own way.

  273. gline Avatar

    *your (sorry spelling Ralph too much coffee)

  274. Layton Avatar


    “So now you have to be in Iraq to have an opinion on it? Wow Layton you are quite loud on the blog with capital letters and exclamation points. You are quite loud.”

    Boy, you must be in pretty good shape these days — all of the jumping to conclusions that you do should do wonders for your cardio fitness.

    Just for grins will you point out where I said I had been to Iraq? In case your seemingly limited scope of thought doesn’t realize it, there are MANY (oops, to loud for you?) other places in the last 20 or 30 years where a person could be exposed to “shooting back”.

    “There is an interesting parallel between those on this blog that have been to Iraq and shot back and the attitudes toward predators”

    Now being a combat veteran brings out some sort of a latent hostility toward predators?? Wow, I think you better consult with “Dr.” Mike — the other self made psychologist on the blog. Maybe you can come up with a paper for the AMA.

  275. gline Avatar

    How is observing that you are using capital letters and exclamation points assuming you are loud? That is common knowledge…

  276. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    gline Says:
    December 4, 2009 at 9:53 AM

    So now you have to be in Iraq to have an opinion on it? Wow Layton you are quite loud on the blog with capital letters and exclamation points. You are quite loud.

    short attention span?

  277. Layton Avatar


    Get away from the coffee, get away from the coffee now! Really, it’s for your own benefit!

  278. gline Avatar

    Layton: I didn’t say you were in Iraq specifically. Slow down you are jumping the gun…

    From just above a reply from you to Roy:
    “I wrote that organization when I found out about their “derby” and told them to volunteer for service in Afghanistan to hunt and kill the Taliban but that not many of them would volunteer because the Taliban shoots back.”

    Your reply: What in the HELL does one have to do with the other?? Besides that, at least several of us that frequent this blog have BEEN where “they shoot back” have you or do you just talk a lot??

    Then I said “you have to be in Iraq to have an opinion?” It seemed like you felt folks in Iraq had more of a right to express an opinion on war than Roy did – but Roy’s opinion correlating violence in war and violence at home on wildlife. I think Roy’s opinion is a valid thought. Evidently out of the box thinking for this current crowd at 9:47 am Friday. Capische? (I don’t think you will because you are defensive)

  279. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears


    I was in Iraq, the first time around, and I can tell you, my animosity does not run towards any wildlife, but there is a certain segment of the population in the world I do hold a grudge against, and would love the opportunity to face them again!

  280. gline Avatar

    No Jeff E, the insult won’t work – Not a short attention span. I have a good memory. I make mistakes on here sometimes, but that has nothing to do with my worth as a being! I have seen others communicate different perspectives/opinions and make factual mistakes on here as well.

    So, I ruffled a few panties with the correlation didn’t I? Something to think about maybe if it does that.

  281. gline Avatar

    That is the problem with retaliation SB. I’m no angel with that, not that I want to kill something to retaliate, but I have definitely felt the emotions of retaliation/revenge/anger.

  282. JEFF E Avatar
    JEFF E

    As I said as a vet I think you assume too much.
    Maybe stick with subject matter that with which you are conversant.

  283. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears


    I guess, when you get shot, somehow, you get the feeling payback is in order, but I can guarantee you, I don’t see turbans when I go hunting, but I do get a certain solace, knowing that my company did a pretty good job of payback for me and a couple of other guys while we were in the hospital!

  284. Layton Avatar

    Maybe I should get away from the coffee, cuz’ being awake and trying to understand what you just said is beyond me gline.

    Just a little point about your Iraq comment(s) – If I am still capable of reading this A.M., Roy didn’t even mention Iraq.

    ““I wrote that organization when I found out about their “derby” and told them to volunteer for service in Afghanistan ”

    Afghanistan – not – Iraq 8)

  285. gline Avatar

    I am doing that Jeff E.

  286. gline Avatar

    Layton for the second time:

    “Layton: I didn’t say you were in Iraq specifically. Slow down you are jumping the gun..”

    Noble try with the semantics, but it doesn’t fly in this case.

    The concept men, concept…. think concept.

  287. gline Avatar

    Well actually you are right Layton (byw can you do that?)
    “So now you have to be in Iraq to have an opinion on it? Wow Layton you are quite loud on the blog with capital letters and exclamation points. You are quite loud.”

    Still the concept re: correlation of violence in war and wildlife etc. Semantics don’ t discredit the concept at all. I’m sure you will be laughing now, little men!

  288. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    WM – posted last night on wolves in a barrel. Just a few other things – turn out was extraordinary – at the start of the meeting the meeting hall was overflowing so the decision to go to the garage was made – 100 or so folks. Mostly hunters in attendance and the questions were about the data and status of wolf management for these situations – that is where the frustration lies. You have wildlife professionals not having access to all the tools they need – in this case control action on the wolves or grizzly bears. So, the only available action is to reduce human hunter opportunities. This is interesting – the head biologist did not reccommend closing hunting altogether even though the situation is unsustainable because without the ability to address the entire issue (wolves,bears and human) there is no solution. That is why hunters and outdoors people interested in all wildlife need to get involved. That is the number one thing they asked us to do – advocate for them (wildlife professionals) to have tools they need to manage the wildlife.

  289. Taz Alago Avatar
    Taz Alago

    Layton –

    I was being a tad facetious myself. But the point is that you actually don’t subsist on what you hunt but the predators do, so you can afford to be generous. Kind of an ethical point, I admit.

    WM – right, it’s actually hard to say that this or that percentage of hunters hunt for meat or fun, or in what proportion those two motives exist in the minds of the hunters. I’m just using my own observations over the years.

  290. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    I do know there has been post service studies done on animosity levels of vets when they are released from active service, I have never heard of one that specifically targets the actions of hunters who have served and those who have not, but based on what I have heard and read over the years, outward violence is not as high as some would like to assume, especially if the combat vet receives or avails them self to the various services available upon exit…

    I know a lot of combat vets, and what I have observed over the years, is more practice of self isolation as opposed to outward aggression…

    I would not be surprised to see some imposed retaliation against certain animal species, but I would suspect it is a very low percentage of vets..now this is just personal observation with no basis in scientific fact..

  291. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    “I’m sure you will be laughing now, little men!”

    Boy, now that helps move a conversation further!

  292. Mike Avatar

    ++You have wildlife professionals not having access to all the tools they need – in this case control action on the wolves or grizzly bears.++

    What a joke.

  293. Mike Avatar

    If “hunters” are worried about the population of ungulates, why do they continue to shoot them?

    How idiotic can you be?

  294. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Mike – I see you are now a wildlife management expert. You are calling the head biologist in region 3 a joke for stating the simple fact that he/they do not have all the tools they need to manage wildlife. You are special.

  295. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Mike – you mentioned the other day that many hunters visited “your site” – mind sharing?

  296. catbestland Avatar

    Talks with Bears,

    If you will notice, Mikes name appears in blue when he comments. This means he has a website. If you click on his name it take you to the website. I visited. It is a very nice site.

  297. gline Avatar

    yes, sorry for the general dig SB, but as you know, when you are shot at or insulted, one tends to bite back a bit. I am staying off this blog today and tomorrow -minding the p’s and q’s may just be an invitation to do the opposite for some!

  298. Save bears Avatar
    Save bears

    I have found that taking shots and posting insults, normally is a symbiotic relationship, the more one does it, the more one receives it.

  299. Mike Avatar

    ++Mike – I see you are now a wildlife management expert. You are calling the head biologist in region 3 a joke for stating the simple fact that he/they do not have all the tools they need to manage wildlife. You are special.++

    I don’t have to be an expert to know that if you are worried about the population of an animal, you may want to stop shooting them….lol!!!!

  300. Mike Avatar

    ++Mike – you mentioned the other day that many hunters visited “your site” – mind sharing?++

    Just look to your right. It’s on Ralph’s blogroll as “The Wilderness Sportsman”.

  301. Talks with Bears Avatar
    Talks with Bears

    Cat – thanks

  302. Cobra Avatar

    I’ve been thinking about all of this and really what does it matter if some guys trophy hunt or not as long as there is no waste of meat it’s their own business thanks to people like Saves Bears and the other veterans out there that fought for our right to be free. Most hunters do not trophy hunt anyway, they may start out that way but after a couple hard days in the woods they settle for a legal animal and call it good.
    I guided in western Colorado a few years when I was younger and all the clients started out with visions of monster bulls and monster bucks but after a few days of humping up and down the mountains they were flat wore out and would take any legal animal, very few of them showed up in good enough shape to hunt the high country. Out of probably 20 -25 clients there were only 2 that I remember being in high country hunting shape and both took good animals and donated the meat to needy families in the area. Most true trophy hunters that I have known are in great shape, know their game and their equipment and will not shoot a lesser animal, if they can’t get what they want they eat the tag. One of the 2 hunters mentioned above had been to Colorado for 5 years straight and never fired a shot, the other was there 2 years and never fired a shot. As long as nothing is wasted it none of our business who hunts for a trophy or not. There are alot of trophy animals taken by meat hunters too, and yes those racks are probably hanging on the wall to remind them of the hunt.

  303. Ryan Avatar

    “If “hunters” are worried about the population of ungulates, why do they continue to shoot them?

    How idiotic can you be?”


    Here is a Novel thought for you, if there isn’t enough to hunt. Soon there won’t be any left, its not rocket science.

  304. Ryan Avatar

    From a Biological standpoint, trophy hunting probably has the least population impact as it ensures animals mature to pass their genes on and generall only non essential males are taken, which are past their breeding prime.


    I would probably fall some where in the middle, I try to only take mature animals, but at the same time towards the end of the season, a full freezer is more important than rack on the wall. For example this season I killed a P&Y mule deer and a cow elk, then donated my antlerless tag to a youth and mentored him on hunt in which he harvested a doe.

  305. Cobra Avatar

    Congrats on the deer, to take any buck with a bow is quite an accomplishment let alone a pope and young buck. Also a thank you for taking the time to introduce a young hunter to the outdoors.

  306. Dawn Avatar

    I am over it ! Idaho and Wyoming need to get in the 21st century . This is like dog fighting which was a misameoner in Wyoming and Idaho and thank you Mick Vick I helped changed to a felony . The bottom line is some of these people do not respect the wildlife that they do not understand . To me getting the word out about these derpy’s means hitting the pocket, money talks, so I will boycott Idaho potaotoes and make sure no one I know spends money in Idaho . Sorry I know there are alot of people in Idaho who hate this derpy and extending the wolf hunt but gotta hit the pockets .

  307. Dawn Avatar

    Coyote spotted about 2 yrs ago in a NYC park, go figure ! These babies can travel !

  308. Dusty Roads Avatar
    Dusty Roads

    Here’s what I like most about Mike’s web site. It says at the top of the page:

    “This blog is wind powered and carbon neutral.”


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