Idaho officials deny Rehberg claim state will ignore wolf protections

He can always hope

It seems that some of the most vocal wolf opponents just keep digging themselves deeper and deeper into a hole. At a recent event Republican Rep. Denny Rehberg claimed that Idaho officials were not going to uphold protections for wolves. Presumably he came to this conclusion based on public statements by IDFG commissioners who questioned whether they should enforce those protections without federal funds to do so. Or, he heard the claim that an IDFG conservation officer told a camp of hunters that the rules wouldn’t be enforced.

Even if the claims aren’t true, Rehberg sounds like he supports such a policy for Montana.

That kind of attitude isn’t going to help secure management authority over wolves to the states. It seems that I’m not the only one who thinks this either.

Ben Lamb of the Montana Wildlife Federation:

“It kind of makes us look like mouth-breathing rednecks here,” Lamb said. “And it gives credence to everything the NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) and Defenders of Wildlife say about the hunting community. It really polarizes the issue.”

Idaho officials deny Rehberg claim state will ignore wolf protections.



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  1. Mike Avatar

    Wow. When Denny Rehberg is calling you out for being too anti-wolf, you know you’re batshit crazy.

    1. Ken Cole Avatar

      No, the quote is from Ben Lamb of the Montana Wildlife Federation.

      1. jon Avatar

        Ken, what is the deal with Montana wildlife federation? I notice Tim Aldrich and this guy Ben Lamb who are both hunters don’t seem to hate wolves as much (judging by the articles they write on wolves) as the other pro hunting organizations in Montana and Idaho.

      2. Ken Cole Avatar

        I don’t know a whole lot about them so I can’t really answer your question. I just like the quote.

  2. Cliff Avatar

    So a U.S. Congressman (Rehberg) says he likes when people disregard federal law, as long as it’s a law he doesn’t like.

  3. ProWolf in WY Avatar
    ProWolf in WY

    Cliff, I am curious how many other people are agreeing with you on that one. Wasn’t it called the Civil War when states were disregarding laws? I’m not saying this will lead to that, but it sure sounds like it.

    I also like the quote about wolves having something psychologically wrong with them when they killed 55 goats. It is 2010 isn’t it? Don’t people know wolves are not these evil creatures like they thought they were in the Middle Ages?

    1. jon Avatar

      Seems to me it is ranchers like Rehberg who have psychologically something wrong with them if they just leave their cattle out in the open unattended where predators can get them and than whine about it when it does happen.

      1. Ralph Maughan Avatar


        As Daniel Berg points out below, in the case of Rehberg, he should simply be thought of as a land developer who once had relatives who ranched. Rehberg owns a cowboy hat, land to be subdivided, and a fat sense of himself.

      2. jon Avatar

        The wolf haters like Rehberg usually accuse wolf lovers as being guilty of using anthropomorphism when talking about wolves, but it is infact the wolf haters who use it more than wolf lovers. If you look around, you will see the wolf haters of being much more guilty of using anthropomorphism than the wolf lovers.

        wolves are wildlife terrorists-Ron Gillette

        There’s psychologically something wrong with them if they killed 55 goats-Denny Rehberg

        I cannot tell you how many times I have seen hunters criticize wolves for the way they kill calling them vicious killers who love killing and all of this other nonsense.

  4. Daniel Berg Avatar
    Daniel Berg

    Ralph posted a link to an article that claimed Rehberg was not really a rancher as much as a property developer.

  5. Nancy Avatar

    Jon said: I cannot tell you how many times I have seen hunters criticize wolves for the way they kill calling them vicious killers who love killing and all of this other nonsense.

    Jon, you really should try and make it out this way and spend some time, if you feel that passionate about wildlife.

    1. Izabela Hadd Avatar
      Izabela Hadd

      I think there is worse predator than a human. Wolves kill to eat. We kill for fun! I have seen a photo of an elk killed by wolf with a a message..”look what wolves did to this elk”…well..I have seen photos of hunters posing with big trophy elk and a grin on their faces..”look what we killed”….and we are not going to eat it..this is just for antlers..

      1. Izabela Hadd Avatar
        Izabela Hadd

        meant to say “There is no worse predator than a human”

      2. jon Avatar

        Hunters kill for fun and for sport and yet they bitch about wolves doing it when they really aren’t.

      3. Ralph Maughan Avatar

        Izabela Hadd and Jon,

        I don’t think there is any reason to pair the “bad” hunters against the needy wolves.

        Human hunters hunt for a lot of reasons. I will not praise them or condemn them as a group. On the other hand, it is true that wolves almost always kill to eat. In those few cases where they kill a lot more, and this is almost always involves domestic sheep, the reason is not clear, but I doubt wolves have any concept of “sport” or “fun.”

      4. jon Avatar

        Agreed Ralph, I don’t like grouping all hunters together because they are not all the same. They are some decent hunters. I will say that some hunters do hunt for the sport, they love killing animals with their gun and there is no denying this. I will never agree with their claims that wolves kill for sport. The wolf haters use anthropomorphism much more than the wolf advocates when talking about wolves.


Ken Cole is a 5th generation Idahoan, an avid fly fisherman, wildlife enthusiast, and photographer. He is the interim Idaho Director for Western Watersheds Project.

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Ken Cole