Idaho Fish and Game will immediately work to transfer wolf management to federal government

New news story has an important change-

Unlike the original story today on Otter’s decision, the story late tonight (Oct. 18) says “Idaho Fish and Game conservation officers will continue to collect information about illegal wolf kills, as they would for any endangered species and transfer it to federal law enforcement officials.” [emphasis mine]

Idaho Fish and Game will immediately work to transfer wolf management to federal government. By Roger Phillips. Idaho Statesman.

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Opinion from the Idaho Statesman. Our View: Wyoming has earned Gov. Butch Otter’s ire, not the feds.  My view is you won’t win votes bashing Wyoming. That’s what the governor figures.



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  1. Cody Coyote Avatar
    Cody Coyote

    When are the opening ceremonies for the Northern Rockies Special Olympics ? The first even is the Biathlon…where state Governors and Fish & Game managers skate on the issues and stop to shoot wolves on sight.

    Unfacetiously now, I hope this Idaho insurrection utterly backfires , as I suspect it might.

  2. Nathan Hobbs Avatar
    Nathan Hobbs

    I find it interesting that IDFG has yet to release a official press release on this matter yet we are getting a trickle of news that Conservation Officers will still work on wolf cases despite Otters claims. I picture a epic clash between the Governor of the State and some Administrators of the IDFG ongoing at this moment.

    Personally If I were in the shoes of the IDFG administrator I would side with Federal laws, much easier to deal with a Idaho lawsuit than to be found in violation of not upholding Federal Law as Otter is demanding IDFG do.

    1. jon Avatar

      Butch is getting desperate and he’s doing this for votes. This is probably the only good thing he’s done so far as Idaho governor in the eyes of extremist wolf haters.

      1. Save bears Avatar

        I didn’t think Otter was up for reelection this year?

      2. Wyo Native Avatar
        Wyo Native

        Yes he is up for re-election, and according to the polls that I can find he is leading from anywhere between 15 and 20 percentage points.

        I doubt he is getting desperate with numbers like those.

      3. timz Avatar

        I have yet to talk to a single person who thinks he’s been a good governor yet he’ll win running away simply because he has the R after his name.

      4. Save bears Avatar

        Well I stand corrected, I didn’t realize he was up for reelection this cycle…

      5. jon Avatar

        I am shocked sb. Something you didn’t know!

      6. Save bears Avatar


        There is one hell of a lot of things I don’t know..

      7. Ralph Maughan Avatar

        I’ve only seen one poll on the race. It was in September. Otter had 52%; Allred 36%. That was quite a while ago. It was a Rasmussen Poll (these tend to lean a bit Republican compared to more other polls). That early any incumbent not over 50% is, as a rule of thumb, regarded as not safe.

        Eastern Idaho is where I live. Traveling around I don’t see many Otter signs even in the reddest areas, but maybe a Republican vote is so certain there is no need.

        Otter is potentially weak with Mormon voters (lifestyle issue). Allred doesn’t say it much publicly, but he is a Mormon bishop. Did it mean something hat Otter asked Mormon Mitt Romney come campaign for him rather than another Republican? Since 1994, you never bet on a Democrat in Idaho, although Idaho does have a Democrat of sorts as one of its U.S. Representatives (Minnick).

        Allred is running a non-partisan campaign with the support of some Republicans. Otter is certainly from the correct party, but I haven’t seen much love for him and the economy is a wreck.

        I’ve talked with about 5 politically active people about this in the last couple days, they think Otter could be weak. I think his unusual concern about wolves when things are so bad in the real world could be just a campaign ploy.

    2. Layton Avatar

      “much easier to deal with a Idaho lawsuit than to be found in violation of not upholding Federal Law as Otter is demanding IDFG do.”

      Excuse me there Nathan,

      Just where is it written that an Idaho Fish and Game agency is in charge of “upholding” federal law??

      1. Nate hobbs Avatar
        Nate hobbs

        The wolves still remain protected under federal law and if Idfg is caught hiding knowledge of or assisting in the illegal kill of any wolf than individuals under the idfg can be found guilty. Distributing radio frequencies is one example, they would be guilty.

        In Otters letter his rhetoric almost implied that the citizens of Idaho are declaring a war on the wolf and the federal laws. IDFG professionals likely want no part in this. They are in a rock and a hard place right now because they in no way want to appear to be assisting in the illegal take of wolves, but at the same time have a governor screaming at them to do absolutely nothing to get in the way of a public that just declared open sea on on the wolf.

        Why else do you think they say they will pass along information of any crime, they do not want the mistakes of otter soiled on their personal careers.

    3. Ralph Maughan Avatar

      Nathan Hobbs,

      I agree with you, and your comments make me want to point out why I kept telling Mark Gamblin that his reassurances didn’t assure me, not because he was untrustworthy, but that Idaho Fish and Game did not have the last say on wolves. The governor or legislature would surely overrule them.

      That has now happened. Perhaps now, he doesn’t have any more say than me.

      1. bob jackson Avatar
        bob jackson

        I put the following in the “wrong” place the other day. Maybe more applicable here.

        bob jackson Says:
        October 18, 2010 at 11:03 PM
        Remember all those months of Idaho’s MSG’s insistence of ongoing “proper” game management of wolves. Even if he was poor at concealing snow jobbing, the embarassment and slap in the face to this crap espoused by him and his superiors to supposedly “bring the TRUE info of legitimate wolf management” …. to the ignorant peasants (us) is seen as it is …a G&F dept. totally sucking at the teat of the politicians.

        Actually what Idaho’s governor says today destroys any credibility that states G&F operations and policy making contributed to date. If I was MSG and his administrative cohorts I would be looking to another state for employment…soon. Tell me where they will have any strength in dealing with any wildlife issues when they have to capitulate to politican supported radical red neck prejudice. Can’t you see it so happening…G&F having to try to suppress a very embodened irrational group of bubbas. ….folks who will ram their unscientific conclusions for every issue …..from wildlife count numbers to warped ideas of how to manage wildlife and fish populations.

        Why didn’t the state biologists and administrators see the results if they lay with those types? Why did they go to the camp of the “commoners”? Go to bed with them and the offspring will have knobs coming out of their heads. Why did they? It was so easy, that is why. Careerism replaced professionalism. Shades of how it happened in Nazi Germany. And who is Idaho G&F left with? … worse than now. And what about the law enforcement game wardens. With a governor dripping oil on any kneeling bubba ready to spring up to flaunt all those rules they always wanted to do anyway, what does this do to law dog morale.

        Hang your heads my cohorts in law. You have the same two choices that worked for rangers in Yellowstone…become apathetic or become bitter. Then as a final statement to your career go to the state supply depot after hours…use that master key copy you never turned in…and come out of that door with a big box of toilet paper. You can carry about a three by three foot box of it to your pickup or suburban if your arms are long enough. Take it home and with every wipe in the coming years you will remember what it was like…to have everytrhing you thought you stood for go back to Dark Ages.

        You will then be duplicating what my first district ranger did when he retired….a big scandinavian type of guy with wavvy blond hair…and a deep voice to go with it to boot.

        I’d say its time for the feds to come into Idaho no different than needed to be done with racial permeated culture of the Deep South in the ’60′s. What does Otter have on George Wallace?

    1. Ralph Maughan Avatar

      The article above says, “Otter still believes big game are Idaho’s “livestock,” and that residents should be able to protect them like any livestock owner.”

      That is the point exactly — Otter doesn’t believe in wildlife. They are just alternative livestock.

      That is where the values clash is. I like things that are wild and free. He wants everything modified and controlled by humans. Domination.

      1. JEFF E Avatar
        JEFF E

        The typical livestock industry mentality. IF they could get away with it the elk and deer would be gone too so as not to eat grass too.

      2. Dawn Rehill Avatar
        Dawn Rehill

        That be right Ralph, control and wild don’t work in the same sentence .

      3. JimT Avatar

        So true..if it brings in money…Otter is for it.

        Livestock, indeed. The hunters on this list should be appalled.

    2. skyrim Avatar

      wink, wink, nod, nod ……………..

  3. Nate hobbs Avatar
    Nate hobbs

    Transcript of press conference with Otter on the subject.

    “However, it’s important to remember that federal regulations do not allow the State or anyone else to kill a wolf because it is attacking, biting or even harassing a deer, elk or moose – only people, pets and livestock. It is my contention that ungulates are the State’s “livestock,” and that we should have the right to protect them like any livestock owner.” -Butch Otter

  4. Connie Avatar

    Bob Jackson says: “I’d say its time for the feds to come into Idaho no different than needed to be done with racial permeated culture of the Deep South in the ’60′s. What does Otter have on George Wallace?”

    As a Southerner, I have listened to Otter’s rhetoric for several years now and it is so reminiscent of the language of Maddox and Wallace that I grew up hearing. I agree with Mr. Jackson.

  5. Craig Avatar

    It’s clear Otter is in the Cattlemans pockets. He got where he is because of a little old nobody who only had a grade school education named JR. Simplot! If you think he’ll not be re-elected you are in a dream world! Yeah he doesn’t have the Mormons on his side but they are not quite big enough yet to get him out! They are getting there, they have to be in the 500,000,000 million or billion catergory they build a frickin new church every week! I think Boise has about 80. The way the economy is, I think I might build a Mormon church and get my 10% or whatever tiding and make some real money on that cult setting!


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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