USDA-Wildlife Services finally meets with its professional critics

Federal animal control agency meets with American Society of Mammalogists after 93 years of criticism-

The American Society of Mammalogists has been criticizing the agency in the federal government that kills “problem” predators for 93 years now.  That agency has gone by many names over that long period.  Wildlife Services is the most recent, and some say the most deceptive.  At one time it was PARC, Predator and Rodent control.  ADC or Animal Damage Control was another.

According to an article in the Sacramento Bee, Wildlife Services (the Service) answered a few questions, but not nearly as many as were asked. In the article below, “Martin Mendoza, associate deputy administrator of Wildlife Services, defended the agency, saying: ‘Our philosophy for the last 40 or 50 years has been that we try to resolve individual problems caused by individual animals.‘ “ [emphasis ours]. Later, however, when the agency was criticized in a question for killing coyotes that had not attacked livestock, a speaker for the Service defended the practice.  However, in doing so he was admitting that the Service deviates from its philosophy of dealing with “individual problems caused by individual  animals.”

The whole story. Wildlife Services meets with its critics. By Tom Knudson. Sacramento Bee.






  1. Jon Way Avatar

    Hey it is a start at least… Great quotes from Carter N. at the end of the article:
    “Simply killing coyotes because they are out there and they might kill a sheep – that’s not justification for a government program.”

    “I came here expecting to hear some revelations,” he added. “I didn’t really learn anything new. The answers were shallow. I expected more. The public deserves more.”

    1. Salle Avatar

      Too bad there aren’t many folks like Mr. Niemeyer in the wildlife management professions. He tells the truth and doesn’t pretty-up any of his arguments for the sake of avoiding the ruffling of many feathers – so to speak.

      I remember him telling me his personal take on certain issues, like lethal control for management, and that he liked me but that wouldn’t change what he had to say. I truly admire that trait in persons with the authority to make real decisions of the sort he has made over the years. A realist for sure.

      Thanks, Carter, for being there to give voice to the realities that rarely find notice in the general public and certainly in the corporate media.

  2. CodyCoyote Avatar

    Carter Niemeyer was in the audience, takking notes. The one quote attributed to him in the article speaks volumes: ” “I came here expecting to hear some revelations,” he added. “I didn’t really learn anything new. The answers were shallow. I expected more. The public deserves more.” (endquote)

    One meeting is not going to turn the tables on the systemic issues with Wildlife (Dis)Services . That such a meeting occurred at all is astonishing…


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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