On top of Horse Butte looking east. The Butte is one of Montana Department of Livestock's favorite places to harass and kill bison. Copyright Ralph Maughan

On top of Horse Butte looking east. The Butte is one of Montana Department of Livestock’s favorite places to harass and kill bison. Copyright Ralph Maughan

Our readers find a lot of news, and they have many comments. Please post your news and comments below at “Leave a reply.” Here is the link to the old thread that’s now being retired — Jan. 22, 2014.

About The Author

Ralph Maughan

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.

485 Responses to Do you have some interesting wildlife related news? Feb. 15, 2014 edition

  1. Ralph Maughan says:

    Here is an explanatory note.

    I put up a new “Have you heard interesting wildlife news” when the old post reaches 350 to 400 comments.

  2. Nancy says:

    past tense: poached; past participle: poached
    1. cook (an egg), without its shell, in or over boiling water.
    “a breakfast of poached egg and grilled bacon”

    Maybe its time to come up with a new way to define the killing wildlife with little regard:

    Like wanton, certainly covers trophy hunting:

    wan·ton/ˈwɒntn/ Show Spelled [won-tn] Show IPA
    1. done, shown, used, etc., maliciously or unjustifiably: a wanton attack; wanton cruelty.
    2. deliberate and without motive or provocation; uncalled-for; headstrong; willful: Why jeopardize your career in such a wanton way?
    3. without regard for what is right, just, humane, etc.; careless; reckless: a wanton attacker of religious convictions.
    4. sexually lawless or unrestrained; loose; lascivious; lewd: wanton behavior.
    5. extravagantly or excessively luxurious, as a person, manner of living, or style.

    • JEFF E says:

      I disagree.
      look especially at the entomology

    • mikepost says:

      Trophy hunting, coupled with legal and maximized consumption/utilization of the harvested animal is neither “wanton” or “poaching”. I do not subscribe to trophy hunting, but you have walked off the cliff with this one…

      • Ida Lupines says:

        I don’t think that exists – it’s an intellectualized ideal, but not the reality. We totally discount human bad behavior. There is illegal poaching and wanton waste, and selling out for money. Perhaps if we had done this decades ago, we wouldn’t find ourselves in the predicaments we are today – but not with today’s extremely low wildlife numbers. It’s only going to add to the decline.

    • Louise Kane says:

      without regard for what is right, just, humane, etc.; careless; reckles + 1

  3. Ida Lupines says:

    I hope between talk of energy, pipelines and trade, they can fit this in. 🙂

  4. Matthew Durrant says:

    I thought wolves had decimated elk populations… Apparently now there are too many elk and ranchers are now whining about them too.

  5. JB says:

    Ah, looks like North Carolina has been invaded by non-native species all the way from the Northern Rockies. These 200lb Rocky Mountain “monsters” purportedly engage in “thrill killing” and are displacing native wolf-haters. Fortunately, they are easily identified by their reliance upon logical fallacies, personal anecdotes, and conspiracy theories. Good luck to our North Carolina friends in ridding themselves of this unwanted non-natives. (Sorry, couldn’t resist a bit of fun.)

    [check out the comments]

  6. Nancy says:

    “They say the amendments would deter new limits on hunting seasons, restrictions on hunting weapons or further protections for prey other than those mandated under endangered species laws”

  7. BC says:

    Any word on wolves crossing the ice bridge onto Isle Royale? This year the entire lake is frozen. Hoping for some new genes…

    • Immer Treue says:

      As of yet, no. One must keep in mind that there is the equal chance (other than a good food supply) that wolves would leave Isle Royale

    • rork says:

      I’m lots more interested in whether wolves enter lower MI across the straits of Mackinac. The island is still special, but not as much with regard to wolves, since we have an experiment about 100 times that big going on now.

      • Chris Harbin says:

        I’m pretty sure some individuals have gotten across to the Lower U.P. I don’t know if any packs have formed. I have relatives in MI so I keep an eye on that.

  8. Ralph Maughan says:

    Idaho Fish and Game to discuss trapping pet deaths in the Idaho Press Tribune.

  9. John says:

    I think Idaho F&G commissioners and legislators need to watch these films

  10. Yvette says:

    Scott Bidegain, the now former Chairman of the New Mexico Game Commission has resigned after being present when a cougar was illegally killed.

    • JB says:

      “The Wyoming Attorney General’s Office in May sent a memo to Gov. Matt Mead’s staffers that analyzed the law and court cases in Utah and Wyoming and said success is unlikely in both states.”

      Unlikely is an understatement. Apparently these representatives need a crash course in constitutional law.

      “The bill provides $20,000, which will mostly be used for travel by members, said Rep. Tom Lockhart, R-Casper, the committee’s chairman.”

      Ahh, I see. So really this is a way for the state of Wyoming to subsidize the travel of people who will lobby the federal government. Nice.

  11. Sid says:

    I have a question does anyone know if that feral bison herd still roams the eagle cap wilderness in Oregon? It was in the news in 2011 and 2012 I believe.

    • W.Hong says:

      Feral Bison Herd? I thought bison were a native species to North America?

      • Sid says:

        Yeah just said that because they were originally owned by a rancher.

        • CodyCoyote says:

          Few ranchers raise a ” pure” strain of Bison bison. The disposition of a wild bison makes them difficult to deal with. Such as tearing down fences and going their own way. Consequentally , most ‘Domestic’ bison almost always have some cattle genes in them, rendering them into a hybrid species more aptly called Beefalo . I’m guessing the ‘ bison’ wandering free in the Eagle Cap in Oregon have some domestic genes in them

          • Nancy says:

            “Southeast Oregon is cattle country so there might be resistance to the idea of bison reintroduction. However, the Wallowa region is cattle country, too, and nobody up there seemed to regard the domestic-bison-gone-wild a threat.

            A local rancher came forward to say the herd gone wild was his and had escaped a number of years earlier. He was motivated to claim ownership after hunters, reading the first article, began asking about possible bison hunting opportunities 🙂


            Would be interesting to know the background of these feral bison now gone wild.

            As with Yellowstone’s elk, were bison also being shipped off “willy nilly” back in the 60’s too?

            • Ralph Maughan says:

              Nancy, No they were not killed or shipped off. The bison slaughter began in 1996.

  12. White Pine says:

    It sounds like it was a herd that may have been captive at some point that broke free, and was unclaimed for some time. Seems to be a fairly regular occurrence in northeast Oregon with many people raising Bison as livestock.

  13. LM says:

    Article by Andrew Cohen:

    Andrew Cohen on Why the Interior Department desperately needs beat reporters
    SOURCE:  The Week
    Why the Interior Department desperately needs beat reporters

    The federal agency’s treatment of wild horses has been scandalously poor.  But you wouldn’t know it from reading the newspaper.

    by Andrew Cohen
        “The wild horses need all the help they can get, too.         (Jeff T. Green/Getty Images)
    America needs a few aggressive journalists to uncover the ways in which the Interior Department is captive to the priorities of the industries it is supposed to regulate. . .” [snip by webmaster of the Wildlife News]

  14. Jerry says:

    Solar power frying our birds. All green energy comes with serious hidden costs. See link below.

  15. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Surprise visitor in the Olympic Village in Sotchi. A wolf pays the US delegation a visit. Kate Hansen had a mobile phone at hand:
    Sorry, fresh news, german text only!

  16. Kathleen says:

    “Waterfowl confuse roads with water”

    “Near-record ice and less open water on the Great Lakes are a growing concern for the safety of waterfowl in Michigan.

    “Licensed rehabilitators say they have seen a “profound” increase in reports of waterfowl stranded on roadways that they confuse with open water.”
    Continued here

  17. Ida Lupines says:

    Here’s something to brighten the winter weather:

    Hawaii’s Flowers are as Intricate and Alluring as their Names

    • Kathleen says:

      Gorgeous, thank you. I went to Hawai’i for the first time two years ago and the flowers knocked my socks off…favorites (if this is possible) are hibiscus and plumeria. I see that they included ginger in this photo piece and am glad they made the note that it’s exotic and invasive–we saw some eradication efforts underway.

  18. Salle says:

    Here’s some good news, I think:

    “A Florida panther kitten discovered near death on a wildlife refuge near Alligator Alley has been rescued and now has a good chance of survival.

    The kitten, found in mid-January when he weighed just one pound, was given emergency medical care and taken to the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa for longer-term rehabilitation, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission announced Thursday.

    Today he weighs more than four pounds, appears healthy and displays a good appetite for the milk-replacement that he drinks from a bottle, according to the zoo.

    The agency held off on announcing the rescue until it appeared likely he would survive, spokeswoman Carli Segelson said.”,0,4564658.story

    • Ida Lupines says:

      What a sweetie. Just when you think you’ve heard the lowest humanity can sink, along comes a good story. 🙂

  19. Cody says:

    More Bison being killed outside of Yellowstone

  20. cobackcountry says:

    I read this and then had to laugh, and at the same time thought to my self “What a moron”. This “reporter” (who is nothing more than a mouth piece) forgot to how to be unbiased. He tosses out one sided assumptions, and gives a couple of “studies” as examples to support the greedy fight to consume every natural resource around and endlessly pollute things.

    “Global Warming” has been made a generalized smear and the term has been adapted by every politically motivated extremist (all parties) to mean anything from “we are causing volcanic eruptions” to “this is a huge hoax that will lead to the government controlling people by withholding oil”. The FACT is, Global Warming simply means that there is a pattern of warming. Truly understanding that MIGHT help some clueless people realize that warming of one part of the Earth will lead to cooling and precipitation changes of other parts. Period.

    What we should be more concerned with, and use better terminology to illustrate is how we impact pollutants and destructively change landscapes. Pretending we don’t effect our health by polluting or our planet by abusing it is as bad as pretending rape doesn’t exist. It simply does not morally or ethically cut it any more.

    This “reporter” starts this article by stating he feels we shouldn’t pollute, then completely changes the subject to a campaign to evade accountability for pollutions- pretty much saying science is all false. He proves he is neither comprehends science nor gives a crap about pollution.

    Then he sites a “massive randomized study” to disparage efforts to detect breast cancer early. (Which has nothing to do with Global Warming, but is a tactic geared toward discrediting all science.)

    Using one study when there are thousands is as moronic and misleading as using a line like “I repeat: I’m not a global warming believer. I’m not a global warming denier. I’ve long believed that it cannot be good for humanity to be spewing tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere” while not understanding that pollution and global warming are NOT synonymous. This reporter gets my vote for a “stupid” sign.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      I don’t know – I kinda share his confusion. I was dismayed by this recent mammogram study, and what can be done about the drought in CA other than throw money at it, and a photo-op for politicians to give the illusion they can bring rain – an area that has been beaten up by agriculture and water redirected and re-channeled for decades, in some areas that were meant to be desert. Their is a religious quality about Science!, but it isn’t settled, new information is discovered all the time, and we overexaggerate how much control we think we have on the environment. I do think pollution and global warming while not synonymous, certainly are closely related. I do think it tends to be oversimplified, and cherry-picked. Even our attempts toward green energy are terrible, since we have to do everything bigger and better, large swaths of deserts being turned into solar farms are taking up even more habitat and frying bird who see these big, dazzling things as water!

      The worst thing however is I don’t see people paying much attention to climate change, they continue to consume and use gas in their big cars and trucks, keep breeding, and the only limiting factor being the economy, not any concern about climate. West Virginia is in a mess from decades of the coal industry and fighting regulation. And the more people, the worse it is going to get. Other people are more choosing to go into denial by concentrating on killing off wildlife. It’s really too late to turn this thing around, IMO.

      • Ida Lupines says:

        Oops, make that ‘there is a religious quality to unquestioning followers of anything including science’.

        • rork says:

          Unquestionably following science sounds like an oxymoron. Sounds like Krauthammer too.
          There is greater or lesser belief that various propositions are true. Our understanding improves, slowly.
          You are sounding very optimistic today.

      • cobackcountry says:


        First, mammos are not treatment- they are diagnostic. You can find as much evidence to support having them as does not, more even. Early detection is key to prognosis, and @20 percent of mammos cannot be seen upon radiological exam- so have breast checks done.

        Second, while pollution may have effected global warming- we can actually control pollution to a greater extent.

        I am sick to death of people using scare tactics to get their way. One study doesn’t really cut it, unless it is a study used to empower ranchers or oil men.

        The person who originally brought this article to my attention thinks I am a socialist because I support environmental and resources laws being enforced. So he posted it to contradict my beliefs that science supports the need to change how we effect the planet.

        All it did was reinforce my belief that people are devolving.

        • cobackcountry says:

          * I meant 20 percent of all BREAST CANCERS (they are primarily those that begin in the skin tissue—aggressive, hard to diagnose, and hard to fight)

        • Ida Lupines says:

          First, mammos are not treatment- they are diagnostic.


          What’s dismaying is that women have been following the rules faithfully and they keep changing on us. The evidence showed that they were lifesaving, which is why insurance covers them entirely, and women were told to have them yearly. Over the years, the rules keep changing. I still follow the rules from at least three changes ago, and I believe a mammogram is the best way to find any abnormalities.

          • Ida Lupines says:

            Sorry if this may be TMI, but I had a baseline when the rules said a women should – calcifications were found, and they’ve been followed for years and years without changing. So nobody better tell me they aren’t helpful.

            • cobackcountry says:

              I 100 percent agree. The writer throws out a study and says that mammos don’t help treat cancer. They are not treatment, they are for diagnosis. Treatment follows. I have had abnormals, and know many women who survive today due to early detection. There are always studies being done, and they usually land on the side of the arguments of the parties paying to back them. Get checked!!!! I encourage mammos.

    • rork says:

      I agree there is considerable cherrypicking. I could bore folks at length about mammography or where the solar energy might be going (follow the sea level data). His point that climate change is blamed by someone for every flood or snowflake, or that some phenomena are extremely complicated, has some merit. In that respect is was actually better than some of his writings – if you are familiar with the author, this article should not have caused much shock. *sigh*
      After freezing rain on snow I now have 18 inches of white concrete surrounding me in S MI. As you know, this proves all scientist are wrong.

      • cobackcountry says:


        Noted. I agree that the term is used as a big scape goat….or erroneously to explain things. That is my point, science doesn’t do that, politics does.

  21. Monty says:

    Oregon cougar tracking: My son, with Navy Seal endurance, for the previous 5 years, without dogs, has located more than 100 cougar kills (plus several lion dens)in Oregon’s Cascade mountains. He is not a wildlife biologist but rather a chemistry major. He locates kills in the dense west side forests with the aide of birds, scat age and content, miles of bush wacking, a keen eye and ability to track in 2 to 3 feet of snow. In some areas there is a pattern to where lions make the majority of kills. The kills he has located include 2 elk, a young black bear and scores of deer of both sexes and all ages. Where large bucks are killed, there is a lot of ground disturbance. Lions frequently follow my son. He has seen 3 lions in the flesh. An unusual hobby!

    • Ralph Maughan says:


      I am not surprised. Cougars are silent and often bury this kills. Wolf kills are evident and very often in the open.

      The public attitude toward cougars and wolves is obviously affected by what people see as compared to what the animals really do.

    • Mark L says:

      That sounds like an awesome hobby. Glad he’s not killing them off like some others.
      Does he know why the lions are following him? They’re not stalking him, they want to see how he hunts (or if he can).

  22. Jeff N. says:

    Noted fiction filmmaker and reigning Queen of the Panhandle…..Rockholm…..sharing his vast knowledge on all things Canadian wolf with an audience of like minded mouth breathers.

    • jon says:


      On another note, Tony Mcdermott has come out and claims that 300 wolves live in the panhandle and that there are 1000-1500 wolves in Idaho. You can’t make this stuff up. Tony Mcdermott used to be an Idaho fish and game commissioner who ALLEGEDLY threatened Rockhead.

      • Cobra1 says:

        I live in the panhandle and it wouldn’t surprise me if there were 300 wolves. I don’t know about the rest of the state because I spend all my time up here but 300 is probably not to far off.

        • Jeff N. says:


          Just curious. How is your +/- 300 wolves in the Panhandle derived. Not trying to pick a fight here. Just wondering about your statement of how 300 or wolves wouldn’t be “too far off” in your opinion.

          • Cobra1 says:

            Knowing about the packs in different areas north of I-90 and south of I-90 and having friends in the St. Joe and south of there to the southern border of the panhandle and what they tell me they see I can easily see how 300 wolves could be in panhandle of Idaho. Some of these packs are border packs with Montana and they spend time in both states. There are also quite a few lone wolves in the panhandle that are seen, whether they are part of a pack or on their own who knows.

            • wolf moderate says:

              It is possible if not probable that there are 300+ wolves in Northern Idaho. I cut firewood and hunted all over south of I90 and there are LOTSof tracks. Only saw a few but wolf tracks are prevalent.

              Moose, elk, and deer were also doing well in areas near agricultural areas, but not well at all in the surrounding mountains.

    • jon says:

      “Our indigenous wolf didn’t have the impact these imported wolves have,” he said. “Fish and Game seems to feel that a wolf is a wolf is a wolf and that’s not true.”

      This guy has nerve to pass himself off as some kind of wolf expert. Maybe the “indigenous” wolf didn’t have any impacts simply because there were so few of them in Idaho.

    • Immer Treue says:

      “Rockholm said in the early ’90s, the indigenous Idaho wolf was “erased from the face of the planet”

      How about around 1930

      “Our indigenous wolf didn’t have the impact these imported wolves have,” he said.

      Can’t because they did not exist

      And then, he said, there is the damage to other wildlife.

      How so?

      “A wolf will kill 25 elk a year to survive and then you can double that number just ‘for sport.'”

      OK Queen Rockholm please document this.

      • Ken Cole says:

        You can’t argue with people who don’t use facts.

      • Nancy says:

        “Documentary filmmaker Scott Rockholm (forgive me, I’m gagging here:) the meeting’s guest speaker, told the group: “Wolves kill for fun. It’s called ‘sport reflex killing’ and (Idaho) Fish and Game has chosen to hide this fact from the public.”

        Oh geez, when I read this kind of crap I just want to puke.

        I’ve lived in rural Montana for over 20 years. The Idaho border (and a lot of wilderness area in between) can be seen from a nearby mountain top in my neighborhood. And, in all those years I’ve only seen/heard wolves a couple of times.

        Heard a few old timers mention “those little wolves” who use to live here and how they were worried about the impact from those big imported wolves reintroducted from Canada.

        Those wilderness areas are and have been, surrounded by a powerful mesh of private ranch land. And then the public lands, Forest Service, BLM (who by the way, all cater to livestock ranching on those lands as in grazing leases)

        Life expectancy, if you happen to be ANYTHING other than human, is very short (and always has been) in these parts if you’re deer, elk, wolves, coyotes, mountain lions, bears, skunks, foxes, raptors, etc. etc. etc – because fact is –
        “livestock “rules”

        Rockhead has conveniently forgotten to mention the truth about the real culprit (s) of “sport reflex killing” – its mankind. And the possibilities are still endless out here in the west when one wants to kill something just for the hell of it.

        • Immer Treue says:


          + a whole bunch!

          • Nancy says:

            Immer – alittle glimpse of what the snow totals look like not far from where I live:


            The “tracks” leading off to the right in the webcam, are from snowmobilers.

            The last few winters here have been pretty mild, so I can only imagine what wildlife is going thru now, just trying to stay alive. Add to that mix the stress, humans wanting to go “play” in wilderness areas, are putting on THEIR lives.

            I’m old school…. Can recall the vintage footage Disney/ National Geographic put out on wildlife settling into yet another winter of hardships and how easy its become over the years, for mankind to exploit/take their lives.

            • Immer Treue says:


              Looks quite a lot like here. The deer are in for it now with the extra 12 inches of snow. We have about a week of -20° +/- evening temps coming. Only a matter of time though for daytime temperature to get above freezing and snow will start to crust. Then it really gets bad for deer.

            • Kathleen says:

              Nancy, you failed to mention that, in the top webcam shot at Lolo Pass, the 8-foot snow measuring stick is entirely buried! And we’re to get a whole bunch more…

        • Elk375 says:

          You forgot Richardson Ground Squirrels.

    • Ken Cole says:

      The hearing is over and the bill passed 49-16. Representative Gibbs, the sponsor of the bill, lied on the House floor when he claimed that the wolf estimates were “known, absolutely known numbers, not speculative, not the ones that have been seen but not confirmed”.

      This is false. The wolf estimates are estimates based on many different criteria that count both known and unknown wolves.

  23. Monty says:

    Mark L: My son would say: why kill such a beautiful animal that adds to the mystery of the forest. It is really exciting to find a fresh large cougar print in the snow. They may be the most athletic of all of the great cats and, unfortunately, short winded and easy to kill when dogs are used. Recently we got a picture of a large lion feeding on a deer kill at night. The lion w/his winter coat is a very beautiful creature. They are also very curious but very, very difficult to see in the wild.

    • LM says:

      I feel very privileged to have seen 2 cougars and maybe 3 bobcats in the wild. Twice I’ve had the hair raising feeling of being watched, too – one while hiking with my daschund along the Yampa river and I thought “hors d’ouvre & Entre?” This winter we encountered a kill drag print in the snow. The horses are very wary always at the watering hole – they don’t linger at the river. BTW – Natl.Geo.Dec 2013 had an article about the comeback of the cougars. What wonderful and beautiful creatures.

  24. Louise Kane says:

    anyone wanting to comment against the newest threats in the newest version of the sportsman heritage act, there is information in this post about where and how to do it, as well as an overview of SHARE……more killing

  25. Louise Kane says:

    state of Waashington issues permits for hounders to kill problem cougars despite voters banning the practice…

    • Yvette says:

      Damn, WA is my home away from home state. I’m so thoroughly disgusted with all the asinine new laws meant to obliterate wildlife.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      So far this winter, a dog was seriously injured and two goats and a sheep have been killed by cougars.

      Is that all????

      • Ida Lupines says:

        I wonder how many dogs have been seriously injured (and killed) by traps? Just an excuse to bring back hounding I would bet.

        Also, WA has been cagey about how they are going to go about managing wolves – something I read about treating them differently than other wildlife?

  26. Louise Kane says:

    for those of you who hated the Citizen’s United decision the McCutcheon case being heard by the SC is pretty damn scary.

  27. LM says:

    I guess we should feel lucky that we can still exercise our 1st Amend rights and express an opinion on this Blog. The War on Wildlife in this country is, on one side, as ideologically driven as the Religious Wars are in other parts of the world. I agree with Ralph that we need “Social Scientists” to explain what’s going on here. Here’s a perspective on what’s wrong with people’s ability to communicate & problem solve nowadays. It’s a wild read, but there is some truth in it (as well as a few chuckles)

    • rork says:

      That’s Mike Adams, one of the highest summits in the burning-stupid range of the quack mountains, for those of you who might now know. His writings and the comments are some evidence that everyone’s mentally impaired, I admit. I hope that was LM’s point. I worry it wasn’t.

      • LM says:

        Good job Rork. You didn’t miss the point and I’m still laughing.

      • Ida Lupines says:

        This from the guy who criticizes name-calling on the blog. Just about as logical. Rork’s alright, it’s just the rest of the world that’s wrong, eh?

      • WM says:

        This Mike Adams is an interesting character. Here is his bio from his own site, a self-proclaimed genius (could be, but better to have someone else sing your praises with verifiable facts for those wanting to check). He claims of himself, a graduate of an un-named Midwest school, 4 year degree, but now the head of his own food research lab, and writer; aced SAT college entrance exams so he says, and the list goes on and on. Some gullible folks look for saviors like this. Don’t really know how much is true. But, do recall Kevin Trudeau, a fraud artist who authored books on health aspects, diet and other stuff that couldn’t be proven, and a companion TV show that stayed on TV for years. The Illinois Attorney General and other prosecutors finally caught up with him, and now I think he’s now spending his time in a prison cell, and eating prison food, no doubt containing the same stuff Adams speaks of.

        Read for yourself the rambling “I am the greatest and you should believe me” (likely auto-) biography of the Health Ranger, Mike Adams:

        And, then check out his for sale offerings of health food in the on-line store.

        See, that’s the way this stuff works – in the end its about making $$$$ on their claims, possibly fraudulently.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          Yes, when the status quo is an epic fail, it leaves people vulnerable to charlatans who may be even worse than the charlatans they already are disillusioned with.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Yes, it’s over the top, but there is some truth to it:

      A modern young man growing up today in America and living on processed foods is little more than a shadow of the strong, vibrant young men who worked the farms just three generations ago. Today’s generation of youth is pathetic, weak, academically inept and heavily pampered with their video game consoles, Ritalin drugs and air-conditioned schools with a watered-down curriculum. They’ve been dumbed down, stripped of nutrients and medicated to the point where literal zombies now walk among us.

      There must be some reason why we let the government and big industry walk all over us, believe what they say without question, and come back begging for more?

    • JB says:

      Good grief. I think I’m actually dumber having read that article.

  28. jon says:

    Idaho fish and game support wolf bounties. Sick, but not surprising.

  29. jon says:,148084.0.html

    And some people wonder why we dislike hunters. They’re extremists.

    • AG says:

      Well jon, not all hunters are extremists, these are. You can’t get a conversation with these guys, they are not “touched” by facts. Just throw a fact in their face and you’ll see what i am talking about.

    • rork says:
      I can point to a dozen things like that just for mutes, and dozens more for wild horses, and domestic cats. I do not conclude folks interested in animal welfare are all insane, but might be able to point to such and say the evidence points that way.

      • Ida Lupines says:

        We live on a planet where not only are the fates of all species profoundly entwined, but where, one way or another, all plants, animals and natural phenomena have been touched by our often heavy human hands. What’s more, we’ve turned out to be unreliable managers of nature, allowing our interventions to be driven by interest groups and underwritten by unholy compromises. We have swerved from paradigm to paradigm as we rewrite our models of natural processes according to contemporary fashion: Even now, for example, we struggle to determine how best to use fire in our forests, and how to cope with poorly conceived biological controls like the harlequin ladybird, a nonnative species introduced in America to tackle aphids that has displaced indigenous ladybugs.

        Great article. We’re the ones who are screwing up things royally, and I can’t help but notice the presence of hunters lurking behind this proposal. It’s too late to turn back what we’ve done to the environment, and we need to humanely manage, not just wipe things out. I don’t understand why brutality has to be part of managing?

        • LM says:

          Good points in that article. Last summer, I drove around the Sandwash Basin of NW Colorado (160,000 acres. It has been plundered for over 100 yrs by 5,000 – 10,000 sheep annually. It is a moonscape to the extent that you can see volcanic fragments strewn everywhere from the last time Yellowstone erupted (600,000 yrs ago). The only thriving living things we saw there were a small band of wild horses and a few Tamarisk which had gained a foothold in a small pothole of water at the bottom of a small wash. However, the Tamarisk had recently been cut down and was stacked in piles waiting for removal. Regardless of whether the two species are native or non-native, I was struck by the idiocy of the “range management bias”. Both species are slated for complete removal.

          • WM says:

            Tamarisk is an introduced invasive plant. Also called salt cedar, it consumes lots of water, and not many animals utilize it for anything other than cover. Tamarisk eradication programs have existed for decades further to the south on the Colorado Plateau.

            Both the sheep and the wild horses in that country should go away – and soon.

            • LM says:

              Yes, I am aware of the issue with Tamarisk and it is EVERYWHERE along this watershed especially on private property, along with Russian Olive, but its the only thing the cows dont eat, all the native stuff gets chomped and stomped before it gets mature. The big old cottonwood groves are dying out and there’s nothing to replace them. That was partly my point, native or non-native there is such a terrible double standard when it comes to range management.

            • LM says:

              Further, I am not biased when it comes to wildlife or livestock because I live amongst and manage for both – I find all critters worthy of consideration and respect their place on this earth as God’s creatures-even Rattlesnakes !

              WM, would you please critique this recent publication. I appreciate your knowledge and insight on these issues (and anyone else on this blog with an open heart and mind)
              Thank you


              • WM says:


                I don’t think I am really qualified to comment on the substance of Craig Downer’s piece, which is being passed off as a scientific literature review interspersed with some anecdotal material. However, I will comment on the “what I think” part. First this is published by one author, and no other contributing authors with academic affiliations of any sort. It is just Dr. Downer, and I don’t know what his credentials are in this field. I do know he is a well known wild horse advocate, by his various affiliations and the body of his writings. He makes no bones about where he stands.

                Second, this article is published in an on-line journal, which has a history of less than two years; there is no evidence of peer review on the topic being written about. And, like many on-line journals just about anybody can get a piece published if they pay (subject to certain criteria, and editorial review).

                So, not to quash new, and maybe, valid new ideas contributing to the knowledge base, I think it is important to look at everything. Whether this puts me in the open mind and heart category, or a detractor, is for others to judge.

                That being said, if this is a piece that is trying to justify the idea that wild horses/burros were indigenous to North America more recently than what other scientists seem to suggest (via the “Yukon horse” finding), and we need to support their rightful place on the landscape in the 21st Century, I am skeptical of the outcome. They still have no predator, and where they have concentrated, they seem to be causing problems on range they occupy, and federal horse policy is impacting some Native American tribal reservations. And, they are causing the American taxpayer a lot of money to keep (another policy issue itself).

                And, just to reiterate, I do love horses – I don’t like seeing them kept the way they are, for example, at the BLM adoption facility outside Burns, OR, or elsewhere. This is another case of having to manage what is now an “introduced” and “invasive” species (along with cows which occupy the same niche but have commercial value in the marketplace).

                • LM says:

                  WM, Thank you for taking the time to read this and I truly appreciate your honest opinion. You answered all my questions about the “peer review” and publication part. I enjoy paleontology so the fossil record part is worth researching further. I’d also like to see some evidence of honest science behind “reserve design.” I have rehabilitated several dry land pastures so I know it can be done without irrigation, but it takes alot of supplemental feed (money), good fencing and due diligence and time to bring the grasses back. The Public Policy part, the poor taxpayers – well, I don’t think any part of Public Land management is doing us any favors; from livestock grazing to mineral leasing fees etc – it’s just a big gravy train for the big dogs. And, doesn’t China have some interest in it too ?

              • WM says:


                ++ And, they are COSTING the American taxpayer a lot of money to keep (another policy issue itself).

      • Ida Lupines says:

        Again I’ll ask, when did compassion, empathy for other creatures, and treating other creatures humanely become insane qualities? (We’re arresting this person and recommend a psychiatric evaluation because they are too gentle!) Why is barbaric cruelty considered normal human behavior? Why are animals made to suffer for our mistakes? We’re ridiculous.

        • Yvette says:

          “Again I’ll ask, when did compassion, empathy for other creatures, and treating other creatures humanely become insane qualities?”

          I think we’ve always been barbaric; there are just so many more of us humans in this era. We’ve outcompeted every other being.

          “Why is barbaric cruelty considered normal human behavior?”

          Since at least the inception of the modern era, we humans have always found a way to justify anything that we deem necessary. History is chock block full of examples. How many ‘good Christians practiced chattel slavery? And the heinous treatment of those humans was much worse than what is written into our slanted White-washed history books.

          “Why are animals made to suffer for our mistakes?”

          Because if we humans ‘want it to be the truth’ we can go to nearly any means to justify our actions as just and necessary.

          “We’re ridiculous” We’re much worse than ridiculous, but there will be a price paid. Unfortunately, it will be future generations that bear the full brunt of that price, but already, we see it happening in our natural world.

        • JB says:

          “Again I’ll ask, when did compassion, empathy for other creatures, and treating other creatures humanely become insane qualities?”

          Um, can you show me where anyone suggested that having compassion or empathy for “other creatures” constituted insanity? Rork’s statement implied that people who put the welfare of NON-NATIVE, INVASIVE species above the ecology of native systems are insane–and I think I’m pretty safe in saying that the comment was meant to be tongue in cheek.

          And while we’re at it, you can’t throw around terms like “barbaric cruelty” without specifying what you mean. Is addling a mute swan egg (mentioned in the article) “barbaric cruelty”?

          “Why are animals made to suffer for our mistakes?”

          That one is easy to answer: Because if we do nothing, whole goddamn communities of species suffer for our past mistakes. Coming to a judgment about the right course of action from an ethical perspective entails weighing more than the desire to protect the welfare of one species.

          • Ida Lupines says:

            I do not conclude folks interested in animal welfare are all insane, but might be able to point to such and say the evidence points that way.

            Rork pretty much dismissed anyone interested in animal welfare as insane right there. Is he still in high school? Because he certainly has a juvenile sense of humor and seems to like putting out ‘petunia bait’, as he calls it. I’ll bite once in awhile. 😉

            Because if we do nothing, whole goddamn communities of species suffer for our past mistakes.

            I don’t believe that. Even our attempts to correct our past mistakes end up harming, and our country at the moment doesn’t seem to want to correct past mistakes, but seem to think of them as the ‘good old days’, e.g. hounding, bounties on wolves, bison slaughter, animal killing contests, and wants to go bag to them!

            We have to be realistic and not excuse and rationalize our bad behavior, by doing that we allow it to continue. I don’t think humane advocates are trying to protect the welfare of only one species, we’re trying to protect many, including ones we brought here and now think killing off is the best way to handle what we’ve done. No egg-addling may not be the worst, but there were other methods that you didn’t mention which I think qualify for barbarism.

            • JB says:

              Because if we do nothing, whole goddamn communities of species suffer for our past mistakes.

              “I don’t believe that.” Then you choose to be ignorant. The following scientific assessment of threats to native birds in the US found exotic species #2 (behind habitat destruction) in terms of threats. They concluded that 48% of imperiled birds in the continental US are threatened, in part, by exotic species.


              “Even our attempts to correct our past mistakes end up harming…”

              That’s really an incredible over-generalization. Yes, sometimes our interventions cause harm to native species, but certainly not always. The alternative is to stand by, do nothing, and hope that past trends don’t continue.

              I know, you still think killing is wrong. Well ask yourself this, Ida: What might have happened had we organized a serious, all-out LETHAL war when we first found we’d carried brown tree snakes to guam? Could we have saved the many species that went extinct while we sat on our hands? Would you now advocate the same, non-intervention strategy for the tree snake as you do for mute swans, or is your protection reserved for “pretty” species?


              • Ida Lupines says:

                Birds are subject to so many man-made threats that invasives species hardly make a dent.

                No, what I would do is take steps to minimize carrying them out of their respective countries inadvertently, and dare I say it? maybe even infringe on an individual’s freedom to import exotic animals as pets and then discard them!

                Lethal control is only a last resort IMO, and it should never be something considered ‘fun’, but a necessary evil. I think you are over generalizing about how much good we’ve done meddling and remeddling. You’re entitled to rethink anything you want, it isn’t my concern.

                So I guess we want to call some of the greatest thinkers of our times insane – Martin Luther King, Ghandi, the Pythagorists, Albert Schweitzer, Mark Twain, and others insane. If so, that’s company I’d happily be part of – instead of those advocating ‘management’ and killing.

              • Ida Lupines says:

                Yes, falling back on the are-they a-pretty-species-or-not argument is a tried and true tactic to discredit – but no, whether they are pretty or not makes no difference to me, and many others. For me, it’s whether a species is capable of suffering, and all about human hypocrisy – how many creatures have been brought to extinction by mankind. The guam tree snakes is only one example, there’s not a one-size-fits-all solution to the damage we’ve caused. If there’s a humane alternative we should take it, not decapitating mute swans, for heaven’s sakes.

                I’d say most of the time, our solutions fail or fall short, not sometimes.

              • wolf moderate says:

                Africanized honey bees?

              • Ida Lupines says:

                JB, I hate to get into these debates because I do respect your opinion, your knowledge and all that you do for wildlife. On the subject of animal rights, we’ll just have to agree to disagree. If we as a society decide we want to remove and/or eliminate entire species because they are inconvenient or no longer useful to us, we will – but we just can’t call it ethical and humane, and even trying to legitimize it by tacking on the ‘scientific’ label is questionable. Only time will tell on that, and if history is any indication, it doesn’t look good.

                I’ve said enough for one day I think! 🙂

                Rork did a good job pot-stirring today.

              • JB says:

                I’d say that most of the time your generalizations fall short. I’m tired of having the same argument with you. I can only conclude that you’ve decided to be willfully ignorant.

                By the way, I’m sure you don’t realize this, but decapitation is listed by the AVMA as an accepted form of euthanasia. So what you describe as “barbaric cruelty”, scientists–the scientists who set the standards for humaneness–describe as a legitimate form of euthanasia. But by all means, carry on with your rant against all forms of human intervention.

              • Mark L says:

                I think your example of brown tree snakes is mostly invalid due to island biogeography . Its not the same as mute swans, which are competing with other swans already filling the same niche. I get your overall point, which is valid, but I think your example is not applicable here.

              • JB says:


                I’m not sure why that would invalidate my argument? Clearly no two instances will be exactly the same; so you might also invalidate my argument because I compare a reptile with a bird, or because mute swans are problematic (for trumpeters) because of competition, while the brown tree snake is a predator. My point is simply this: I believe that we are ethically obligated to try and remove non-native invasive species where possible (the responsible person tries to correct their mistakes). Ida, on the other hand, is hiding behind the idea that we’re not very good at making such corrections. That is sometimes true, but it’s sort of like your kid arguing that he shouldn’t have to apologize because he sucks at it.

            • JB says:

              And I’ll add, it is exactly this type of reckless intransigence that led The Wildlife Society–the professional organization that certifies wildlife managers to conclude:

              “…that the philosophy of animal rights is incompatible with science-based conservation and management of wildlife”

              [while supporting]

              “…an animal welfare philosophy, which holds that animals can be studied and managed through science-based methods and that human use of wildlife, including regulated hunting, trapping, and lethal control for the benefit of populations, species, and
              human society is acceptable, provided the practice is sustainable and individual animals are treated ethically and humanely.”

              At the time I argued that this position was needlessly divisive, but statements like yours are forcing me to reassess my prior position.

              • Ida Lupines says:

                I think that statement is quite true, because animals can never be treated ethically and humanely with these methods, and humans are fallible creatures – so both of those variables make the possibility never. Oh and I forgot the myth of sustainable – never.

              • JB says:

                So again, you make bold proclamations like, “animals can never be treated ethically and humanely with these methods” without any definition of what you consider to be humane, or any support for anything you’ve written. It’s like arguing with a…well, like arguing with one of the wolf-haters. 😉

                “…and humans are fallible creatures – so both of those variables make the possibility never.”

                What?!!! My God, really? You mean we’re not infallible. Well to Hell with it then. There’s no point in trying anything if we might fail. Probably should just put a bullet in my head…then again, I might miss and inhumanely injure myself. Oh what do do…?? Could you be my moral compass, Ida??!


              • JEFF E says:

                you haven’t figured out yet your trying to pin down a shadow

              • Immer Treue says:

                JEFF E,

                You make me laugh!

              • JB says:

                “you haven’t figured out yet your trying to pin down a shadow”

                I think Jeff E just called me “dense”? I prefer “persistent”. 🙂

              • JEFF E says:

                Not dense, just speaking from personal experience.

                If your like me when you enter into a “debate” you at least expect the opposing point of view to be consistent, at least in substance, if not in foundation, but like a shadow you will find neither.

          • Yvette says:

            do not conclude folks interested in animal welfare are all insane, but might be able to point to such and say the evidence points that way.

            I don’t see the implication that he was referring to NON-NATIVE SPECIES, however; the usual flippance is present.

            As for the ecology of our native systems how far back are we to look? How far back are we to go to correct our past mistakes?

            Getting back to the mute swans, what problem are they now causing and who is suffering from those negative impacts?

            • Yvette says:

              I wish we could edit. I didn’t want the entire post bold. Ahh well.

              • rork says:

                Ida, Yvette, maybe you missed that I was responding to jon, mimicking his hunters are extremists tactics.
                I’m not aware of executing mutes being called fun by anyone, I think egg-addling is way to slow and ineffective for what I want to see happen (I still see baby mutes, and I don’t see decreases in mutes where lethal means are not employed, just ever more mutes that will also have to die some day).. You both managed to question the intent of folks against mutes, somehow. I’ve never shot a bird in my life, though I’ve tried with turkeys. I was very happy to see 2 pairs of trumpeters on my river on Fri, but I also saw a pair of mutes, and it made me angry. There’s not much open water, and they are competing with animals that are worth allot to me and other wildlife advocates for very little available food.

      • Yvette says:

        The insanity may lie with the wildlife managers who have found a convenient way to cherry pick which non-native species they target for extermination. Ironic that it appears to suit the fancy of the hunting industry.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          Thank you, I just don’t see why having mute swans in a city park is such a clear and present danger to native plants and animals. It may be the only contact with the natural world some may have, that and a rooftop garden. Since we’ve already done a bang-up job messing up which species we keep and which we don’t, it seems illogical.

          Here in my state I believe they remove eggs, and that’s a lot less violent than the methods suggested in that article. It’s hard to comprehend how disgusting these violent methods are to read about in the modern world. But then we don’t restrict guns or growing tobacco either, so it really makes no sense.

          • rork says:

            I do not object to some people keeping domestic swans under permit, and neither do most people and my state’s wildlife managers, just like we don’t say you can’t have chickens, ducks or geese. The permits are very strict due to fears of escape.
            Here we are cherry-picking to be in favor of native trumpeters rather than alien mutes. I await outrage for the slaughter of Lake Trout of Yellowstone.

  30. Nancy says:

    A novel idea.

    Intersting that predators are blamed for so many deer, yet loss of habitat is probably a much bigger factor:

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Yes, but where are the deer going to go to is the question, I agree, with habitat loss continuing pretty much unrestrained. We have a tendency to not see beyond our own backyard boundaries, literally and figuratively.

      • Ida Lupines says:

        And where are the wolves going to go, and the bison, and the elk, and on it goes. Replaced by human zombies and their cattle, I guess. The future sounds like an H.P. Lovecraft novel! *shudder*

        Have a nice day, everyone!

  31. JB says:

    Here’s one to lighten the mood: Cow tippin’: Real or Fake?

    • WM says:

      Can’t really disagree with the physics of cow tipping. We do a lot of kitty tipping in our house. But then, a 12-14 pound cat against a full grown human 13 times its size is a bit different. A quick push from above the center of gravity with both hands and kitty goes down. Followed by a full side massage – nose to tail (massive purrrring). Kitty gets up, and is pushed over on the other side. Again, followed by another full massage (again purring). They love it. Best performed on a soft landing surface like a bed or carpeted floor.

      Same experiment once tried on the 80 pound golden retriever dog – much harder and no appreciation whatsoever. Experiment terminated after 3 attempts.:)

      • Nancy says:

        “Cow tipping” happens all the time in rodeo events out here JB.

        2 guys usually (or gals depending) dash out of chutes on horseback, chasing a cow (having horns on the cow/steer is preferred, fake horns are often used these days) down an arena where this event/abuse is happily sanctioned and encouraged cuz that’s how it is out here when it comes to entertainment.

        Those cows/steers etc. meet the end of a rope (or ropes) suddenly and violently.

        One human piles off his horse in a gust of dust to “settle” the cow/steer/ etc.

        Its all very exciting if this is what you’ve been use to when it comes to local entertainment.

        Hands in the air, as the cow is stunned and lays on the ground, from the event.

        Minutes to wrap it up….. smiles all around, even more cheers if its even close to some local record.

        And I’m thinking these bovines are the lucky ones given what their relatives are going thru down the road in some slaughterhouse.

      • Mark L says:

        Won’t work on a 80 lb black and tan hound in ‘default position’. She won’t get up.

  32. Ida Lupines says:

    JB, it means zero to me because what scientists have considered humane changes over time. It’s a method that most of the general public would find barbaric and offensive, regardless of whether or not scientists find it effective. In other words, it doesn’t look humane, but barbaric. We’re still trying to eliminate gassing unwanted cats and dogs in this country, which I thought was rather hypocritical of America when criticizing Sochi.

  33. Mark L says:

    The irony here is that our ‘all out LETHAL war’ is what got them there in the first place (against Japan). Obviously, we had no forethought on this, which is why it’s a textbook example, but our response is modified through experience (just like the birds that fall victim to the snakes).

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Yes, we just can’t quit warring and destroying. Agent Orange defoliants in Viet Nam is another example – I always wonder about not only the poor innocent people in war’s path, but innocent wildlife too. Doesn’t matter to us I guess.

      • Yvette says:

        Ida, I recommend the book, Gold Rush in the Jungle Dan Drollette

        Dan Drollette will take you on a journey of the ecological history of Viet Nam and the plight of some of the rarest species in the world. What is amazing is they’re still discovering new mammal species, but now that the country has become more open to outsiders and economic development, they face new problems. They are on a race to save many of these animals as habitat is being rapidly lost.

        He also addresses the war, Agent Orange, plus other pesticides that were used.

        It’s a good read, Ida.

  34. Mark L says:

    Yes, he does suck at it, he’s a teenager. He just looks at me with those ‘Forrest Gump’ eyes and mumbles.
    But to your point, I think there’s a hierarchy that needs to be established. Which did more damage, introducing a top predator on an island, or having 2 swans in a sympatric niche competing? Snakes kicked ass on innocent birds…swans are still struggling with peers. Resources to kill snakes, swans get benched for now. To me the problem is a lack of dedication to eradicating an introduced species, as opposed to just tolerating them….where to draw that line. And the spin get worse with wolves and Canada….like its SO far from us. Perspective is everything.

    • JB says:

      I wouldn’t argue that there’s a hierarchy of needs (desires?); and I agree, clearly the brown tree snake is worse than the mute swan. It’s the ideological intransigence that I find so galling. Some people on this blog continue to argue that we can’t kill animals because it’s unethical. Yet, an ethical argument could easily be constructed that it would be unethical of us not to act to correct our mistakes–mistakes that have adverse consequences for species, communities and ecosystems. And yeah, sometimes making those corrections means animals are going to die, whether we shoot them or modify their habitat such that it is no longer suitable.

      • WM says:

        ++ It’s the ideological intransigence that I find so galling. Some people on this blog continue to argue that we can’t kill animals because it’s unethical++

        I wonder how some folks feel about the African cane toad introduced to Australia, and how to deal with that troublesome invasive species?

        I also wonder about Norway rats, wherever they jumped ship, found no predators and multiplied rapidly, or pigs in Hawaii or now nearly anywhere in the continental US?

        How about the impacts of accidentally imported yellow crazy ants on the land crab population of Christmas Island – in this instance maybe resulting in greater biodiversity.

        Some here can’t figure out we live in a human impacted world, and we need to manage problems we have created.

        • Yvette says:

          Yeah, I did a short search and it does look like the mute swans are causing big problems out competing species. They’re also changing the vegetation in some of the wetlands.

          Finding a balance and the best ethical choices is always a challenge, though.

          WM, you make good points. There are many invasive species that are causing big problems.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          Oh we know it all right, WM. We refuse to manage our biggest problem, which is ourselves. How did all of those problems start? Humans. Gall? You don’t know what gall is when we have a double standard for us and all other living things? Why? One day we’ll have a planet with nothing else but us on it, but thank God I won’t be here.

          Yvette, I’ll definitely check into that book. I’ve got so much to read, but I enjoy it! 🙂

  35. JB says:

    “You don’t know what gall is when we have a double standard for us and all other living things? Why?”

    That’s quite simple. We’re the only living creatures that have shown the capacity to predict what might happen to our environment (because of our actions) and take measures to prevent it. That capacity comes with a responsibility, Ida; responsibility you choose to abrogate. And while you sit on your hands fretting over how animals will die, they die anyway–and by means that are far uglier than guns (e.g., starvation, disease).

    • Ida Lupines says:

      We’re the only living creatures that have shown the capacity to predict what might happen to our environment (because of our actions) and take measures to prevent it.

      Really? When did this happen? I don’t see any measures being taken to prevent anything; and in fact I see the same mistakes being repeated, and I see history repeating itself because we either refuse to acknowledge our mistakes, blame someone/something else (refusing to take responsibility), or just don’t want to believe it and ignore it.

      You seem to want to totally disregard human greed, selfishness and capacity for corruption. It’s nice to be optimistic, but I’m a realist.

      • Ida Lupines says:

        Starvation and disease (until we exacerbated the problems for animals)and lean times are part of nature, at least they were until our activities exacerbated the problems. The animal goes back into the chain of life.

        There is nothing more misguided and ugly than sending in people who like to kill. As far as your accusation that I do nothing, you know nothing about me, and you have several billion others to accuse as well who do far less.

        • Mark L says:

          Actually, your participation on this site is doing some good educationally. I like to read this back and forth because it gives me (and I assume others)new perspectives. I think the suffering that we try so hard to avoid as humans (OK, some try to avoid) is a natural process in life that we’ve been taught is to be avoided. Others would say it builds character (for the survivors). It seems to me some are attaching a valence (or value) on this when it’s not all black and white. just my $ 0.02.

          • Ida Lupines says:

            Yes!!! I’m so glad you feel that way because it is my feeling as well, talking about it – and making life to easy doesn’t build character. I’m old school.

        • JB says:

          “There is nothing more misguided and ugly than sending in people who like to kill.”

          There you go assuming you know the motivations of people again. For the umpteenth time, liking to HUNT and liking to KILL are not the same thing. I teach kids everyday that want to be wildlife managers–and I can assure you that the vast majority appear genuinely concerned for wildlife.

          “As far as your accusation that I do nothing, you know nothing about me…”

          I didn’t accuse you of doing nothing, I accused you of adopting a philosophy that (conveniently) abrogates your responsibility. I would call it the ‘we can do no right’ philosophy; others might use the term ‘non-interventionism’. Whatever you call it, I think it’s damned irresponsible.

      • JB says:

        “Really? When did this happen?”

        It’s been happening for a very long time, Ida. It’s called “science”. Here’s an example: “All currently available climate models predict a near-surface warming trend under the influence of rising levels of
        greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

        The measures to prevent are many as well, and they’re being discussed and implemented around the globe. The ESA is itself intended to prevent extinctions due to man’s pervasive influence. As is the Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, and (in part) the National Environmental Policy Act. Then there are countless state, local and even international efforts. Shall I go on?


        “I see the same mistakes being repeated, and I see history repeating itself …”

        A few weeks ago I sat in on a presentation by a dreaded state fish and wildlife management agency that documented how agency efforts, along with the help of partners, had led to the recovery of five once endangered bird species here in Ohio. Yes, some mistakes are repeated, but the picture isn’t as grim as you paint.

        “You seem to want to totally disregard human greed, selfishness and capacity for corruption.”

        Not at all. Perhaps you could point me toward an example of my disregarding “human greed, selfishness” etc.? I think a more accurate portrayal is that you and a few others seem to have some sick fascination with humans killing animals–in fact, upon some reflection it seems you can hardly talk about anything else. Oddly enough, the hunters I know rarely speak of it. Hmm…now who has the pathology…?

        • Ida Lupines says:

          The doer, no matter how you look at it.

          The Southwest has its work cut out for it, I’ll say that.

  36. WM says:

    Not really wildlife news, but a topic which comes up here from time to time – why the D party doesn’t get more aggressive to advance its platform under the Obama Administration.

    Interesting tactic unfolding for the mid-term elections. In an effort to get out the D base, President Obama, instead of trying to compromise with the R’s as he has attempted in the past, getting nowhere, has now shifted to advance D interests. This should get out the base and maybe preserve the Senate majority, and possibly narrow the margin in the House. Appeal to things like no cuts to entitlement programs, and increase the minimum wage. So, now we are into strategy that gets aging baby boomers and those on lower economic rungs to vote themselves a little bump, ostensibly taking from the rich to do it. What will the R’s do in response to an “awakened” and activist D base?

    Chris Mathews on the topic –

    then click on the “Obama says no to Social Security cuts,” icon.

    And, an interesting translation of the “minimum wage” issue is how it is playing out in Seattle – It is not a push for about $10/hr; it is a demand for $15. Ho

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Thank you, WM – I look forward to reading. Getting nowhere (and even going backwards) is frustrating. 🙂

    • Ralph Maughan says:

      One of the firmest generalizations about congressional elections, is that they are battles of the two parties’ bases. With a few exceptions, the party with the most enthusiastic base does well in the midterms. Overall, independents just don’t count for much in mid-terms.

      If Obama had acted in accord with this in 2010, there would be more Democrats in Congress today, and they would likely hold a majority in both chambers of Congress. 2010, however, was a time of great frustration for the Democratic base. Many sat on the hands and the enthusiastic Republicans soared. Obama got behind then and has never really come back in terms of advancing his policies.

      With the radicalization of the Republicans by the Tea Party, Koch Brothers, religious right-wingers, Obama should have seen that he would be demonized by them no matter what. So why not be a successful “demon” than an frustrated unsuccessful one?

  37. Harley says:

    It appears this family took a lot of precautions and yet they still suffered a pretty devastating loss.

    • Nancy says:

      Harley – it would appear there’s been an update to this story. Isn’t this Rockhead’s site?

      • Immer Treue says:

        Tracks if possible, bruising on the attacked animal. If a wolf pack has been on an animal long enough, at times they will “sock” it, ie pull the hide off, sometimes inverting it. Also, if pack on kill site long enough, it will look as though a grenade went off as remnants of attacked animal will literally be scattered all over. This could happen in a day or two if pack and associated scavengers are left to their own devices.

      • WM says:

        Any independent verification of the dog attack, or reporting in the media on the dead colt from a few days back?

        I am always a little skeptical (a healthy weakness on my part), when anything that is associated with Rockhead and wolves shows up on the internet. Isn’t Steve Adler, yet another personality we should be wary of?

        I am not saying neither event happened, just that confirmation by one or more reliable sources is a good thing.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          I think Steve Adler was the organizer of the infamous Salmon, ID Coyote and Wolf Annual Holiday Family Fun Derby, wasn’t he? 😉

        • Harley says:

          WM, I share your’s and Wolf Moderate’s skepticism. I received the story in an email from a friend. I didn’t realize the site was connected with anyone infamous. *sigh* Should have checked further I suppose. I feel this is a legit occurrence but now I have more questions.

          • WM says:

            Quote from the website Harley links to, apparently text within another email dated 2/18/14 to Steve Adler from a Jerome Hanson (affiliation unknown):

            ++Yesterday, WS confirmed that wolves killed a young horse on private land about 1 mile East of Red Elephant Gulch on the South side of the road. Our aircrew has seen wolves in this general vicinity for several weeks.

            Todd Grimm
            State Director
            Idaho Wildlife Services++

            Appears to be an extract from more detailed text.

            I suppose a motivated party with a phone number could try to contact Todd Grimm directly, or even a Regional Office of IDFG, and not wait for the media, for confirmation.

            • WM says:

              OK, upate on a contact. I think the IDFG Office must be the Magic Valley Office in Twin Falls/Jerome (about 80 miles south of Sun Valley. Jerome Hansen (identified as the name from the email) is the Supervisor of this office. Telephone number 208-324-4359, for anyone who wants to check it.

        • Nancy says:

          You are not the only one with that “healthy weakness” WM. The story read like a Rockhead script and fact is, the Swigerts have been bitching about wolves for years:

          Look at the pics of the corral where the tragedy took place – any animal could of gotten thru that wood fence. Barn was a mile from the house?

          Who leaves a stud (s) in with mares & foals (especially a 7 mo. old stud colt?) My thought was the stud worked the colt over first (stallions in the wild can and do kill foals of other stallions) In the autopsy pic, those look like claw marks on the hind leg, mountain lion? They disembowel first. What’s with all the broken willow branches in the crime scene?

          8 years ago they had a handful of pound dogs – today they are raising purebred bloodhounds AND training them in packs, IN wolf habatit.

          Complaining now (and back then) about no elk anymore because of wolves, yet if you google Wood River Valley, plenty of elk hanging around.

          The frantic emails in the followup piece, typing with” blood on her hands” What no phone service? Where’s the other bloody dog?

          Kind of reminds me of the Pittman/Appleby episode a few years ago.

      • Harley says:

        Regardless of who lives in the state, this loss still kinda sucks. I had heard about this one other place, now I can’t remember where I’d read it. Gah, I hate when I do that!

        After reading about it and seeing the precautions these people took makes me wonder about a lot of things. This just isn’t right. It’s one thing if people are careless but from what I’ve read, it didn’t appear to be the case here.

        • wolf moderate says:

          If it comes from the Rock I dismiss it. Hopefully another news stream picks it up if it’s factual.

          • Harley says:

            Hmm… what would be deemed reliable? I’m searching the net and so far I haven’t been able to come up with anything else about this story.

            • wolf moderate says:

              That might tell you something…one way or the other

              • Harley says:

                Updated article interestingly enough from the same source you sited Nancy.


              • Nancy says:

                “Sheep, elk and dog carcasses, bones, skulls and wolf tracks the size of a human head—that’s what two Croy Canyon residents claim is scattered around their property six miles west of Hailey”


                Not the date of that article Harley – 2006.

                “June 2007
                For the first time since reintroduction, biologists confirm a denning pair of adult wolves in the Wood River Valley”


                Now check out this Facebook page where JS claims, under the pic of little JR’s body, that this was the THIRD horse of theirs, killed by wolves. Hmmm.


                As I said, I’m sure when the Swigerts went from a handful of pound dogs a few years ago, to the lucrative business of raising and training Bloodhounds (sure these dogs go for a pretty penny if sold to the military & police) neighboring wolves became a problem given the fact that they no doubt train their hounds all over public land around their ranch.

                And as LM pointed out “bringing in and feeding carcass scrap to the hounds is alright (heck I do that) but there are consequences associated with that, too”

                Plus you could drive a mack truck thru the fencing around the barn area, where the colt was supposedly killed (I still think that wasn’t the location) If their livestock & dogs had been attacked, harrassed and ambushed by wolves for the past 8 or more years, you’d think they’d have better fencing by now.

                Sorry, this story just doesn’t add up…..

              • Immer Treue says:


                Good observation. In another post, Yvette said they lost a horse to rattlesnake bite, and another to a confrontation with a bull moose.

                If you are out there, what was your source of info. That would possibly clear up some of the odor of old fish, one way or the other.

              • Nancy says:

                Immer – here is the original story. The colt’s sire was killed by a rattlesnake but another stud was killed by a bull elk a few years back.


            • Barb Rupers says:

              I also searched the net for other sources and found none.

              “If it comes from the Rock I dismiss it”.

        • Yvette says:

          It doesn’t just suck, it is a devastating loss. Much empathy from me for the little colt. When one puts their heart and soul into an animal it is a devastating loss.

          I looked at the link yesterday and noticed a couple of things.

          + They lost the colt’s sire to a rattlesnake bite.
          + They lost a different stallion when he got into it with a bull elk.
          + On a different site I saw that they’ve complained about wolves since at least 2006.

          There are a couple things I wonder about: when they lost the colt’s sire were they as upset over rattlesnakes as they are wolves?

          When that bull elk killed a different stallion were they upset with all elk?

          There have been a lot of wolves killed in Idaho the last two years. Given the nature of wolves and their pack/family structure, do you think that has contributed to ‘problem wolves’? If a hunter kills important pack members won’t that increase the chance that the pack will splinter? What if there are yearlings that are left without the instruction of the alpha male and female?

          It might be possible that the anti-wolf people in Idaho are causing a lot of these problems by hunting the wolves and destroying the important structure of the pack.

          • Nancy says:

            “There have been a lot of wolves killed in Idaho the last two years. Given the nature of wolves and their pack/family structure, do you think that has contributed to ‘problem wolves’?”

            I don’t know of anyone doing studies on this Yvette.

            The events of this story are confusing and weird, on a lot of levels. She claims a single wolf killed the colt and that same wolf attacked her dogs just days later. F&G claims wolves killed the colt. Small tracks? Same tracks? Same black hair? What, did DNA on the spot? Colt killed 100 feet from the barn but I don’t see any willows around that enclosure.

            In January, Mrs. Swigert was out running 20 dogs (count em) bloodhounds, labs, wolfhounds, border collies) and 4 wolves “ambushed” them? Jeez the wolfhounds alone could of put up a good fight.

            Okay, look for the book 🙂

    • LM says:

      Poor little colt 🙁
      Just wondering . . . Why keep the Akbash dogs penned up ? Aren’t they more effective out on perimeter patrol ?

      • Nancy says:

        Suggest you follow the money and the fame here LM 🙂

        • LM says:

          Yep, money talks. And speaking of talking, there are some glaring holes in this story (as well as in the fence). Its sounds like they had enough forewarning of the escalating problem that they could have made some management changes. From an animal husbandry standpoint I have to question the methods; the barnyard and “high dollar” extremely valuable irreplaceable (baby) horses are 1 mile from the main house and the stallions and “savvy mares” are to defend themselves and their young against a pack of wolves ? Thats too far away for a lone coyote to alert you in time to do anything. And, knowing the risks of the nature Vs. nature dynamic between prey & predator species and not micro-managing for that is fine too but don’t expect yoour side to always win and then play the “poor me” fancy livestock pedigree card when it doesn’t play out favorably for you. Finally, why keep the predator defense dogs kennel confined (a mile from the house) when it’s obvious there is a problem. If they were at least kept in with the horses the outcome might have been different (except the stallion would have probably killed the dogs first) Also, bringing in and feeding carcass scrap to the hounds is alright (heck I do that) but there are consequences associated with that, too.

          • LM says:

            Not impressed by the name dropping either. It all sounds pretty hokey.

            • Nancy says:

              Hokey? Staged? Limelight? Furthering a frustrated agenda? Can’t quite put my finger on it LM.

              • LM says:

                Hah! Can we add “Wacky” to the list. I didn’t know much about Idaho until I subscribed to this Blog. I don’t live in a State that has a publicly known wolf population and Ive heard rumors and wouldn’t be surprised if I saw one – not sure I’d tell anyone either, not sure who I trust to tell ? Maybe it’s good they stay out of the limelight ? Everything else except commercially raised livestock has got a sight fixed on it.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      This may have been answered before, but how do investigators differentiate a wolf attack on livestock from a feral dog attack?

      • Immer Treue says:

        Tracks if possible, bruising on the attacked animal. If a wolf pack has been on an animal long enough, at times they will “sock” it, ie pull the hide off, sometimes inverting it. Also, if pack on kill site long enough, it will look as though a grenade went off as remnants of attacked animal will literally be scattered all over. This could happen in a day or two if pack and associated scavengers are left to their own devices.

  38. Ida Lupines says:

    The measures to prevent are many as well, and they’re being discussed and implemented around the globe.

    You’re not serious, are you? I’ll say this as kindly as I can, and then since we don’t see eye to eye, we should drop it. This is one of your more naïve statements, and an example of discounting corruption and greed, and deception.

    • JB says:

      Yes Ida, I am serious. A bit of reading homework: start with the UN’s framework convention on climate change. The framework was put forth in 1992 when, at the international Earth Summit, 150+ nations signed the UNFCCC, which committed governments to reduce concentrations of greenhouse gases in the earth’s atmosphere. Many (most?) have set about getting it done, putting in place policies that will reduce their emissions. Others–our country included– have protested that they are unfairly treated. But as the global temperature rises, so does the pressure to take action.

      But I’m sorry, you were telling me how naive I was. Please, carry on.

      • wolf moderate says:

        Wow. We have done so well. Unemployment at…who knows the real number…while China and India keep emitting CO2. Makes sense to take ourselves out if the ballgame so others can knock us off the pedistal. Its clear that the chinas, India’s, and africas of the world will be much more caring.

        • JB says:

          If by “out of the ballgame” you mean less reliant on greenhouse gas emitting fuels, then yeah, that really sounds like a terrible idea. Instead we should cut off every mountain top, frack every gas deposit, and tear up the Book Cliffs for tar sands. Yee haw!! [sarc]

          FYI: India emits less C02 then the US and per capita emissions are roughly 1/10th of what they are in the US. China’s per capita emissions are less than 1/3rd of the US. China is currently facing problems not unlike what the US went through with air and water pollution in the 1950s and 60s. I expect it will respond the same way other countries have–by regulating point-source pollution. But that will just be the start.


          • Ida Lupines says:

            That’s because India and China, and other Asia Pacific countries are still an emerging economies. With continued population growth and economic growth, it will be a challenge. Everybody talks a good game, but the results just don’t show any real commitment to reduce emissions. But India gets real props IMO for taking wildlife conservation seriously, probably more so than any other country.

            But for India, development is trumping a clean climate. A third of the population still lives on a $1.25 a day and air quality isn’t the biggest priority.


            • JB says:


              Iceland and Norway get over 90% of their electricity from renewables–and they are developed countries; Canada gets over 60% from renewables, and it is developed. A lot depends upon the courses that China and India take in the next few years, and right now there is a lot of international pressure to lay off fossil fuels. This will only increase.

              • Ida Lupines says:

                Iceland and Norway are unique in that their populations are very small and mostly centered around the seacoasts. Wind is good in that kind of a situation, or island nations – but in Great Britain it has not been working out they way they’d hoped.

                Nobody is going to give up on fossil fuels anytime soon, despite what empty promises are made, including the US exporting them.

          • WM says:


            ++ India emits less C02 then the US and per capita emissions are roughly 1/10th of what they are in the US. China’s per capita emissions are less than 1/3rd of the US… I expect it will respond the same way other countries have–by regulating point-source pollution. ++

            With per capita income so low, and population so high, government so corrupt, and a few other things I don’t expect China or India to make much progress in air, water or solid waste pollution. Per capita is not the only measurement; it is total output now and projected into the future.

            We do need to remember the shear size of the population of these countries. Doing the math 1 in 4 people in the world live in China. Add India, and it is 1 in 3 living in just those two countries. So, we continue to outsource US manufacturing (some other developed countries too), to China and the externalities of those manufacturing jobs come back to us in the form of global air pollution, and the fresh and salt waters adjacent to these uncontrolled manufacturing continue to get pounded, with wildlife and fisheries suffering as a consequence.

            • JB says:

              I don’t disagree, WM. But their high populations and low per capita incomes also make them (as a country, and as individuals) more sensitive to price. You can be sure that, corrupt or not, government officials are watching the prices of oil ever increase in the US and Europe–and they know that most of their populations simply won’t be able to afford energy produced in this manner. I think it is also safe to assume that the leaders of these countries will also be concerned about energy independence. So why pay Saudi Arabia, Canada or some other foreign nation a fortune to produce energy, when they could produce it internally at a much lower cost? And, of course, investing in renewables will earn them considerable political capital, internationally.

  39. Louise Kane says:

    This is a link to an op ed in an Albuquerque paper
    Certain state officials, including wildlife officials, are leaving office in the wake of wildlife offenses and it appears that data about the effect of trapping in New Mexico is indicating that populations of certain species are being more greatly impacted than previously thought.

    Just recently I saw some images posted that came from the website of a part time trapper in Wisconsin. This trapper also travels to other states to trap and kill wildlife. The website he had constructed is quite astonishing in that there were hundreds if not more images of trapped, injured or dead wildlife. He also boasted about and posted images of a trailer system he bought so that he could haul the kills and or the live animals he sells to penning facilities. Since the first images started going around a few days ago, he has taken down some of the worst images that included a coyote with its mouth duck taped, the tape wrapped many times around its snout as it lay on the front seat of his truck, alive. The images also showed him posing with many terrified animals still in traps. Many included the faces of terrified coyotes being held by the scruff of the neck; in one he had placed sunglasses on the animal’s face. The accompanying comments and glib text that he placed on most of the images illustrated really disturbing sentiments. One of the hardest ones for me to see was the duck taped animal…. Although perhaps competing in the nightmare category, were the very many images of coyotes that were shoved into cages and stuffed on top of one another. He indicated that he was selling the animals for their urine and also to penning facilities, after they had been kept in cramped cages for what appeared to be weeks in come instances as he complained about the way they smelled. Included on the site were dead beavers, otters, numerous images of bobcats dead and being manhandled while alive, piles of hundreds (yes hundreds) of opossums, and several very sad baby raccoons looking like they were begging to be released. This man trapped his way across the US but seemed to like Mississippi the best. I know some will object but all I could think of was terrified victims being tortured by a serial killer and that it sucks that there are no laws to protect wildlife from sobs like this.

    I am quite sure there were tens of hundreds of animals killed, if not thousands. There were also images where three or four animals were trapped within close range of one another. I bring this site up because I think it demonstrates, along with the op ed I read tonight that that the numbers of wildlife that are killed by people like this and trappers may be very underestimated.

    My objections to trapping are many including the suffering of the individualis, the potential for abuse to the live animal in the trap by sadists, the indiscriminate killing of many species, and the ability of trappers to decimate populations of animals and dominate landscapes with these disgusting devices.

    The animals are not always killed quickly despite what the trappers say, they may be transported and kept for indefinite periods of time in terrible conditions and they may suffer horrible treatment after being trapped.

    This man also posted video The worst of that lot was of a small utterly terrified and thus incapacitated coyote covered in wet mud. The man went to pick up the animal who had completely pulled itself into a ball and then shoved it into a cage where its body mass doubled up on itself because the animal was so terrified.

    I think that trapping is one form of hunting that absolutely must end. The people that trap appear to have some things in common, they pollute the landscape with traps, they seem to treat everything they catch as vermin, many of them brag about their catches and seem obsessed with killing more and more animals. The way the animals are treated/handled is unconscionable.

    trapping, wildlife contests and penning have got to go

    Seeing the hundreds of images of dead animals this one man posted, really drove home the magnitude of the damage that trapping does.

    There is an anti trapping initiative in Montana now should anyone be interested
    and of course Footloose does great work

    • Immer Treue says:

      I brought up last week, that the depth and breadth of trapping, and the fur industry in this country is mind numbingly enormous .

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Gee, I wonder how JB would defend this man. JB, you mentioned a while back that the more pro-wildlife and anti-killing types would push, the more resistance they would get. Well, the same is true for the anti’s and nutjobs – the more they push, the more resistance they will get. Compromise doesn’t work except in utopia, these people just take advantage.

      • JB says:

        Assumptions seem to be a problem for you of late. In this case, I don’t know why would you assume that I would defend this man?

        Likewise, while I have advocated compromise in the past as a way of working past some of these conflicts, I’ve never suggested compromise is always the solution to problems. Of course, the bad behavior of one individual does not necessarily a problem make.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          Really? You made some pretty broad assumptions about those of us who are against entitled killing of animals last night – and this morning Louise posted more information that no one would have ever even thought human beings were capable of. Nothing to say now? I guess only you can make assumptions.

          • JB says:

            “You made some pretty broad assumptions about those of us who are against entitled killing of animals last night.”

            Really, which assumptions did I make that has you so off put? I recall taking your own words at face value and confronting them with rational counter-arguments (a skill called critical-thinking). You respond, predictably, by citing anecdotes as if they were the rule. Let’s take your last post as an example, shall we?

            “Louise posted more information that no one would have ever even thought human beings were capable of.”

            Actually, anyone with their eyes open and any little bit of knowledge of history fully understands that human beings are capable of far worse than eradicating or even torturing a few animals; Auschwitz, comes to mind; as does Rowanda, or the Trail of Tears.

            So did you really think that “no one would ever” think that “human beings were capable” of killing and torturing animals? Really? Are you really so blind that you cannot see the problems inherent in the argument you’ve constructed.

            Here, let me give you another hint.

            Nothing to say now? I guess only you can make assumptions.”

            I’m done arguing with you. As Jeff E. said, it’s like trying to pin down a shadow.

            • Ida Lupines says:

              Good! I have nothing to say to you ever gain and don’t want to waste my time with your silly back-and-forth. Now I can feel free to discuss things without being restrained by you.

              You like to be deliberately obtuse obviously, to make a point. The point was (and is) people are supposed to learn from the mistakes of the past, not repeat them, or return to them.

            • Ida Lupines says:

              Yes, I have a fair amount knowledge of history, thank you. But that’s the thing – it seems you imply it’s ok to torture a ‘few animals’, since they do not rise to the level of a human being, in your hierarchy.

              For many others, it is the mindset that is wrong, or unethical, immoral, or evil – whatever we choose to call it, people or animals. There’s no ‘reverence for life’ that should extend to all living things.

              The moderators have asked that we don not discuss these issues in the context of human genocide.

              “Ethics is nothing other than Reverence for Life. Reverence for Life affords me my fundamental principle of morality, namely, that good consists in maintaining, assisting and enhancing life, and to destroy, to harm or to hinder life is evil.”

              — Albert Schweitzer

              “Reverence for Life says that the only thing we are really sure of is that we live and want to go on living. This is something that we share with everything else that lives, from elephants to blades of grass—and, of course, every human being. So we are brothers and sisters to all living things, and owe to all of them the same care and respect, that we wish for ourselves.”

              — James Brabazon

              • Ida Lupines says:

                “Noone”, “ever”, “nothing”, “only”

                If you are trying to say I am inflexible and uncompromising, then yes, I would agree with you. Especially now with the fiasco that wildlife management, and especially wolf management, has become.

                Most reasonable people start out with good intentions, willing to negotiate and compromise – but when lies and taking advantage are the thanks you get, it’s time to stop.

                What should we do about all of those exotic games species in New Mexico, but by all means, let’s rid the world of mute swans.

              • rork says:

                Let’s just rid North America of mute swans.
                “Gee, I wonder how JB would defend this man.” is similar to “I wonder if Ida quit molesting children yet?”

  40. Louise Kane says:

    Also a general question
    I’m under the impression that its illegal to transport live animals between states
    A law enforcement agent in MI that I spoke with after seeing the previously mentioned site said that trappers may transport live animals out of the state but not into it…
    Anyone know about this
    also about whether its legal to duct tape a live animal and handle them in traps while posing?
    I suspect some of the answers are state by state but not sure

    I’d be grateful for any information

  41. Louise Kane says:

    PS trap free is looking for signature gatherers if you live in Montana….

  42. Yvette says:

    Louise, what you described by this trapper, (I’m sure he will say it’s his ‘way of life’) is beyond comprehension. There is nothing that can defend this: no fish and game “conservationist”; no science; and no human of sound mind.

    The problem is how do we evolve beyond perpetrating such horror on other species and justify it by allowing it to continue?

    Lastly, would you send me the link? You can have it Ken email it to me. It isn’t because I want to see those pictures. I don’t, but I do plan on trying to get Project Coyote to have a presence in Oklahoma since I’m finding out that we have quite a few coyote ‘calling’ contests. Hunting elk and deer is one thing, but what you described is something that is probably off of the radar of most people, and there is no justification for such horror.

  43. Louise Kane says:

    Yvette, I think you are correct that this kind of behavior is off the radar screen. The director of Project Coyote is aware of the site. I’ll send the link to Ralph or Ken and ask them to forward it but as I wrote the owner has since taken down most of the content. There are some working on the legal issues and I am woking with a non profit to develop a short video that can be posted on it website so that more people will become aware of this issue.

  44. Louise Kane says:

    Yvette he took down most of the content on the site. There are still a few images of coyotes and a live fox attached to a trap being held upside down. There is one image of him smiling in front of a truck full of dead opossum he has killed in a spree. Not only is this truly disturbing but the comments are equally enlightening as to the mind set and entitlement that some people feel when killing. This site more clearly than most demonstrated to me the depth and breadth of the problem and why the laws have to change. I don’t think this is a minority of trappers issue and don’t believe that argument is truthful. Look at the comments below and think to yourself, this is one man, creating this much carnage, and in his one circle of friends not one of them object, they all applaud these actions. In other posts, people ask where he “hunts” and want to know the methods. This man has a twisted and warped sense that he is helping wildlife because he is killing all the critters that eat wild turkey or their eggs. They speak about running over the animals, tossing them aside, and killing hundreds of them while trapping. The site until taken down also showed many other species, as described before, suffering similar fates.




Trapper J Podhayski thats alot of grinners
May 9, 2012 at 11:10pm


Nick Beder 378 in 3wks it was fun,best day had 48
May 9, 2012 at 11:11pm · 1


Shari Dixon How many did you run down with your truck and hit and chase after ?
May 9, 2012 at 11:18pm


Richard Cates Was you targeting possum
May 9, 2012 at 11:20pm


Nick Beder Targeting every thing to get a better turkey and deer population ,trying to get get coyote and bobcats but all the darn possums keep coming.
May 9, 2012 at 11:33pm · 2


Nick Beder Shari only a few jumped in front of the truck,yes that is fare chase
May 9, 2012 at 11:35pm · 1


Lee Taylor Good God man you hammered them! lol
May 9, 2012 at 11:57pm


Thomas Cash good lord man thats a truck load
May 10, 2012 at 2:46am


Modern Trapper let’s see the put-up pictures. Were they all shipped to NAFA? 
May 10, 2012 at 5:55am


Ryan Weber That’s Nick he’s crazy!
June 8, 2012 at 8:01pm


Nick Beder Ryan u should come help skin all of they in a nite or two ?
June 8, 2012 at 8:16pm


Ryan Weber I don’t mess them nasty things!
June 8, 2012 at 8:18pm · 1


Lane Vickers Don’t blame you one bit Ryan 
June 8, 2012 at 8:21pm


Ryan Weber Them things get tossed aside after I put a .22 on em
June 8, 2012 at 8:21pm


Shawn McCarthy Good job. Have lots in Ontario now. Come on up here. 
June 8, 2012 at 9:58pm


Kristen Marie Love it. 
June 16, 2013 at 10:53pm


Aaron Daniels Holy crap! Thats a lot.of.possums
February 4 at 12:54pm

  45. Louise Kane says:

    Heres what the sick bastard does
    He took down his site but some of us have been documenting his work. Thanks for helping all of you including the person who captured these images.

    This comment was written about his traveling death camp

    “Nick Beder
    February 13, 2012 · Edited

    This is how I Roll !!!! 45 ft flat bed , 4ft live market coyote pen , 16 ft storage with 6 – 6ft freezers and my t 100 toyota 4 off roading. Just about time to load up and head south !

    • Louise Kane says:

      Please note the last image of the coyote duct taped around the mouth and legs

      When people like this are allowed to kill, maim and torture wild animals with no restraint, for no justifiable reason and with obvious disregard for the individual or the ecosystems they live in, then we must pass laws to stop the behavior. This is unconscionable.

      • Yvette says:

        When people like this are allowed to kill, maim and torture wild animals with no restraint, for no justifiable reason and with obvious disregard for the individual or the ecosystems they live in, then we must pass laws to stop the behavior. This is unconscionable.

        Which is why we need to work on reforming state trapping/hunting laws.

        Until within the last year I had no idea the severity of how some of these hunters work. I had never heard of a coyote calling contest until a few months ago, and I work with environmental issues daily, but not wildlife/hunting. If I was off the radar, there are many more out there like me. For me personally, the best option is to work locally. It’s one of the reasons I hope Project Coyote will step up in Oklahoma. From what I’ve seen, I like Project Coyote’s approach, and we need it here. That would be a start. I won’t partake in the theatrical and destructive methods used by some of the animal rights NGOs.

      • rork says:

        Here’s some MI regs, not that they apply.
        It’s illegal to “Transport or possess live game taken from the wild, except under a rehabilitation permit, or as specified in a DNR Wildlife Damage and Nuisance Control Permit.”
        “Any animal captured in a live trap must be immediately killed or released; it is illegal to take these game animals or protected animals live from the
        wild. It also is illegal to hold these animals in captivity.”
        (We leave words out sometimes here.)
        “It is illegal to possess live game or protected animals taken from the wild except under a permit issued by the
        It repeats there are some exceptions for licensed wild-life rehabilitators. All that from the 2013 hunting and trapping guide. In other documents I see some animals can be live trapped on your property and released elsewhere within the same county (think raccoon) and some can even be captured and kept (painted turtle).
        Alert some authorities in Mississippi or other states where this guy traps. Maybe they have laws already.

        • rork says:

          I can’t find regs in Mississippi banning live transport. This sounds grim in fact:
          There’s actually a market for penned coyotes and foxes, and the trappers there want it to be illegal to bring them from out-of-state, since it hurts the price they get.
          Our first president did this sort of thing with foxes, but maybe the tradition can change.

        • Louise Kane says:

          Rork I called and spoke directly to the law enforcement chief in the wildlife division who seemed to think what he was doing was legal….
          I’ve nto had the time yet to follow through in the code if anyone knows anything please post or e mail me

          thank you

        • rork says:

          When I search fox penning or coyote penning or coyote live market I get depressingly many hits – too many to even begin putting links here, sample for yourselves. Evidently in Virginia and Indiana it’s been a topic of public debate recently. Seems mostly under the radar elsewhere.
          I’m a bit shocked, since I don’t imagine very many citizens would approve, no matter what the state. It’d even be hard to get average hunter to approve penning.
          Thanks for bringing it up.

          • Louise Kane says:

            Rork what you just said about getting depressingly many hits is very true. I remember reading about a man in MA who was shooting coyotes from his window for fun quite some time ago and being dumbfounded when I called the MA authorities to complain and was told it was legal. From that moment on, I was aware. But most people are not and the point you make about believing that most citizens and even hunters would not approve is probably true. In fact, I see its not true through the work I do. Yet, many hunters do not speak out and unfortunately the kind of cruelty that I posted about earlier is blossoming for some reason. I think part of it is that there is a great deal of violence in society today and that people are immune to it, hunters do not self police the idiots and serial killers or may be afraid to speak out against it. If you go to some of these same sites you will see the occasional hunter expressing disdain for these activities, the creeps quickly shout him/her down and as the more normal people depart the site its overwhelmed by increasingly crazy people that love to kill. Another smokescreen that these seemingly and largely uneducated people seem to latch onto is that these activities are helping wildlife officials and that its their second amendment right to kill. Its a big mess and once you are aware, very depressing. I don’t ever search for these sites, they come up on forums or are sent by other concerned parties who know that I care and work against these policies. They overwhelm me with sadness and frustration and sometimes it feels very unhealthy to know about it. But turing away doesn’t seem an option either. I hope that one post will make people remember that this goes on almost every day in every state and its just plain wrong.

            • Ida Lupines says:

              I agree. Willful ignorance does not help. I don’t seek these sites out (contrary to what JB assumes), and I don’t go to those blogs and sites with the usual characters that sometimes turn up here. If they turn up at one or the other site that I do go (pro-wildlife only) then I will read them, and it always is a disappointment.

          • Louise Kane says:

            One last thought
            I think trapping more than any other killing method leaves open the potential for these types of abuses, and for great ecological damage although I despise the method for the suffering inflicted on the individual. if one man is doing this, what are thousands doing even if only 1% act like this? That really freaks me out.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      What a disgusting, disgusting waste of oxygen. I hope he ‘rolls’ right into prison.

  46. Kathleen says:

    From last Sept.–Indiana allows penning, also.

    Excerpt: “The new report, ‘Indiana Coyote Penning—An Inside Look at Animal Abuse and Cruelty’, further suggests that the Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) was aware that the law was being violated, yet “turned a blind eye to this illegal conduct, and continues to allow and encourage penning in the state.” ”

    From a post (May 2011) on Indiana penning:
    Excerpt: “It’s simply for the pleasure of the hunter to have his hounds do well,” said one Alabama state agent in late 2007, after a two-year investigation shut down a penning operation there. Seized in just this one illicit operation were 55 foxes, 25 coyotes, two bobcats, “…33 cardinals that were apparently used as bait,” and one moonshine still (cue Dueling Banjos).”

  47. rork says:
    There are probably many other versions.

    Female 3 year-old wolf “Isabelle”, left Isle Royale around Jan 21, and has been found dead (cause unknown right now) in Canada. They interview Rolf Peterson. Last ice bridge (07-08 I think) also resulted in 2 wolves leaving and ending up dead in Canada.

  48. JEFF E says:

    reminds me of the time I watched the first couple of Rockchuck home vidios.
    Except this one is higher quality and more believable.

  49. Nancy says:

    “She said hackers can do far more harm with stolen credentials than with stolen payment cards, particularly when people use the same login and password for multiple accounts”

    Don’t mean to stray off the subject of wildlife, but how often are humans gonna be able to re-invent themselves?

  50. Immer Treue says:

    Rationale for Snowy Owl Bonanaza: lemmings

    My apology if this has been posted in the past as snowy owls seem to be the rage at this time.

    • Louise Kane says:

      I was having dinner tonight with friends and this subject came up. The snowy owls have, apparently, come to Cape Cod in big enough numbers to be seen on various local beaches. I’m headed out tomorrow to see if I can spot them. Both friends have now seen numerous owls! Its very exciting, I’ve never seen one. Thanks for posting Immer

  51. Louise Kane says:

    i saw this notice about an Arizona Legislator that passed a bill though the senate allowing ranchers to kill median wolves that are suspected of attacking livestock? There is not much more on the site. There is a 250,000 funding mechanism attached to help with litigation…..I’m trying to get my head around how a state can pass legislation that supersedes a federal regulation and how a lawyer might defend that without inching a frivolous lawsuit sanction? there aren’t enough facts here. Does anyone know about this?

  52. Louise Kane says:

    without incurring a sanction aka frivolous lawsuit charge.
    Not sure where inching came from that pesky auto spell check

  53. Louise Kane says:

    A murder of crows (pun intended)
    seriously killing contests being sponsored by schools
    something is going terribly wrong
    killing contests and violence against wild life seems to be escalating. The more its allowed the greater expansion and defense of the “right” to conduct these heinous events as management action. This notion has to be disabused, I would think by laws. I’ve been seeing contests to kill squirrels (squirrel slam) sponsored by a fee department in NY, prarie dog killing contests, hundreds of coyote and multi species predator killing contests and now crows.

    Crow Killing Contest Sponsored By Sasakwa High In Oklahoma

    The Oklahoma “game” department just announced that the senior class of Sasakwa High is sponsoring a crow-killing contest, set for the beginning of March—complete with prize money for whoever murders the most crows. It’s a spectacle sure to inspire the next killer-in-waiting to turn their semi-automatic on their fellow classmates.

    Email The Principal:

    Call Coordinator Debra Thompson at Sasakwa High School at 405-941-3213.

    • WM says:


      Did you actually see an official announcement by the Oklahoma Game Department on this, or pull some unverified post off the internet somewhere? Of course, we all know if it’s on the internet it must be true, right?

      I’m not saying such a scheduled event it is not true, but we know hoaxes abound, and there is no shortage of gullible people, regardless of the motivation/truthfulness/lack of objectivity of an original poster. For example, jon from this forum could be primping in front of a mirror this morning with a Cheshire cat grin on his face.

      • Yvette says:

        WM, it did happen on on February 22. Apparently, the cheerleaders sponsor an annual predator hunt as a fund raising event. There is also an annual Sasakwa crow hunt. Winter crow season in OK is Dec. 9 – March 4.

        I checked the school’s website last week and there was an announcement about the “Cheerleader’s Annual Crow Hunt and Coyote Hunt”, but I don’t see it now. The facebook page is up, but it seems to be used to exchange information about the hunt. You can look for yourself, ‘Sasakwa Coyote Hunt’ on facebook.

        This business on coyote hunts, crow hunts (who would have ever thought anyone would hunt crow?), fur trapping, etc. is all new information to me. I had no idea of the number of coyote calling contests we have in Oklahoma. Yesterday, I went to OK Predator Hunter’s Associate website and I counted 15 of these contests. That’s just what I counted in a matter of a few minutes.


      • Louise Kane says:

        Rather than spend the time to craft a pedantic (“Of course, we all know if it’s on the internet it must be true, right?” ) insulting response why not take the time to confirm for yourself, as I did. I spoke to the teacher who organized it.

        Your post is interesting despite the sarcasm and insult. As an educated lawyer and hunter, I would think these kinds of contests would really anger you. Killing contests and the mentality behind them ate ill conceived, illustrate a lack of respect for wildlife and seem to be rallied for and attended by the bottom feeders or uneducated. The comments in support of these events are often truly frightening . But rather than object to the contest you choose to cloud the issue and the post by writing insulting remarks.

        I would imagine there is a great deal that you and most hunters like you, would object to if you saw these contests, penning events and internet advertising.

        I think you live in a world where you believe the laws about hunting are etched in stone and that your beliefs are rooted in “traditional” hunting rights derived from legal precedent dating back to English common law and driven by men with respect for their prey and sport. Perhaps thinking along the lines that hunting has always had a place in American culture, hunters follow the rules and the wildlife agencies are run by good people with degrees that know what’s best.

        Yet clinging to the ideal ignores the mounting evidence of escalating violence that is often tied to hunting and is evident in our society as it is in the “sport” of hunting. Hunting seems to be devolving back to buffalo killing sprees, shooting passenger pigeons from the skies, and eliminating predators from the landscape.

        I think the “radical” outlier, giving hunting a bad name hunter may now be the norm rather than the exception.

        It seems that the “principled” hunter abiding by and modeled himself on the North American Model my be more mythological than real

        Ask yourself, what remains one of the primary arguments against gun control or at least against changing the laws when the discussion inevitably turns to gun control after a school shooting? One of the most apparently compelling arguments is the defense of people/hunters needing semi automatic weapons to hunt.

        I somehow don’t picture you carrying a semi automatic, or joining Ted Nugent on a hog or coyote killing spree, or spending your free time watching one of those dismal killing shows on Animal Planet. But to ignore that these hunting activities are little more than an aberration or isolated incidents is to ignore a sad reality that is overtaking wildlife management and “hunting”.

        until laws change nothing will stop the idiots who are intent on exercising their god-damned second amendment rights to carry semi-automatics and kill anything they want, sarcasm intended

        Things have changed, as Dylan said

        FYI some links to the squirrel slam and to a fox pro crow calling killing contest as well as a hunting forum commenting on the school sponsored crow calling contest.
        as indicated I called the school to confirm

        Squirrel Slam event

        Comments about the school crow hunting event

        Crow hunting competition
        “Crows come in just over the treetops, where No. 6 or 8 shot in a modified barrel will bring them down.

        When you have killed that first incomer, continue calling in the same sequence, but never three caws! Just add some urgency. The other crows in the flock saw that first bird go down and will come in as a loosely organized mob (or “murder of crows” according to Webster’s) to see what’s going on. Stay hidden, keep calling and drop your birds as they come into range. In most cases, you’ll wish you had brought more ammunition!”

        • WM says:


          Rather than spend the time to craft a pedantic (“Of course, we all know if it’s on the internet it must be true, right?” ) insulting response why not take the time to confirm for yourself, as I did. ++

          Before writing the comment you find offensive, I went to the high school website. There was no reference whatsoever to the event; also did a Google search using common words to identify such an event, any reference to the school, or the OK Game Department (which is alleged to have publicized it)- no hits on any variation. So, just maybe my skepticism was justified. And, importantly, I don’t do Facebook, as Yvette pointed out is a source (thanks by the way).

          I don’t like these contests, but I can understand (even though you don’t) a desire/pressure to do them in rural farming communities, where crow do a lot of crop damage. This high school only has 8 teachers, which means an enrollment of about 50-75 students, maybe even over four grades.

          Now, we in Seattle, worship our crows, with a documented population of nearly 20,000 birds, comprising nearly 1/3 of the entire bird population in the city. I, on occasion, have clapped my hands numerous times to try to get them out of trees and off our roof (where they leave their droppings and inedible food scraps dropped from heights (like clam/mussel shells), or the tops of neighboring houses. It doesn’t work, and they leave and quit making noise only on their own terms. I have never hurt one either, though I have been tempted for reasons stated.

          I don’t know who is using these semi-auto rifles for hunting. It is more popular in different social circles, I guess. I have only seen one while hunting elk in ID, and everyone I know either uses a bolt action (cyle it between shots), or a single shot Ruger 1.

          By the way, Louise, if you are in to making phone calls, give the IDFG Regional Office referenced above and see if you can find out more about the colt allegedly killed by wolves two weeks ago in Sun Valley. The phone number is in a previous post of mine.

          • Yvette says:

            Sasakwa, OK is in Seminole County in central Oklahoma. The population is ~ 300. We have many of these tiny school districts. It costs the state a bundle to maintain so many tiny school districts, but there are reasons to do so. With many of these tiny towns the schools are all they have left.

            Rork, the hunts are open to anyone that wants to register. It isn’t just for the kids. btw, have invertebrates ever been known to solve multi-task problems to figure out how to get a piece of food like crows have done?

          • Louise Kane says:

            WM what does me phoning about the colt have to do with the exchange between us?

            the point of my post to you was in part to illustrate that even though you and other more “reputable”, honorable or traditional hunters do not participate in killing contests activities or penning or animal abuses these events are on the rise. You answered that post by poo poking the argument I guess disproving my observation by stating that you never use a semi automatic nor does anyone you know.

            This discussion is not going anywhere obviously

            • Louise Kane says:

              poo poking the augment, I guess, …..

              • Louise Kane says:

                ok lets try that one more time sorry
                you answered my post by poo pooing the argument and attempting to disprove my observations by stating that you never use a semi automatic nor does anyone you know.

              • WM says:

                …semi-automatic weapon++

                I just implied I don’t see it that often in the circles I tend to socialize. I don’t know how prevalent they really are in some locales. I do know the AR-15 types are expensive; the AK types a little less so. The AR types are more accurate, and unfortunately some folks seem compelled to use them (though not on crows so much, I would think). Probably an AR with the right sighting system scope/red dot or such, might be used by some for coyotes and the occasional wolf where legal to hunt. Yeah, I will acknowledge they are out there, but are they that prevalent for hunting- I know they are not for elk, even though they might be legal in a couple states, because they typically fire a .223 light, high velocity round. It is also chambered in a .308, but much less common. Not sure if they are good for deer or bear. I doubt you were thinking of the more traditional semi-auto high power rifles for large game which have a clip capacity of 4 rounds that were somewhat popular thirty years ago, but not so much now (chambered in .270, .308, .30-06 and a few others).

                That good enough for you?

            • WM says:

              Come on Louise, the segue was your statement that: ++I spoke to the teacher who organized it.++

              I presumed you telephoned this teacher, since you used the term “SPEAK” (to utter words or articulate sounds with the ordinary voice) rather than writing (as in an email), in which case you would have used a more accurately descriptive verb, such as “emailed or write”.

              I suppose you could email the guy from the IDFG Regional Office or Todd Grimm at Idaho WS if you wanted to find those contacts to learn more about the colt. I would do it, but then that would disclose an identity betraying my internet anonymnity.

              • Louise Kane says:

                I did call and speak to the teacher WM…
                but what does this have to do with the colt? we were discussing whether the event was valid. The teacher told me she was the organizer

              • WM says:

                OK, one more time for me too. The segue and common element was personal research to a verifiable source – regardless of topic.

          • Nancy says:

            “If we can get enough teams together we would like to give some of the pot to the Oklahoma Wildlife Dept, but nothing is official yet”



            Like coyote and gopher killing contests out here WM, there seems to be a growing number, in our species, who are bored, well armed and can’t wait to go out and kill “take care of” those pesky varmits.

            I am amazed (and sad) that these people have nothing better to do with their lives or time.

            “Stupid is as stupid does”

            By the way, this is my third attempt to post my thoughts/comment. Not sure why they didn’t appear the first couple of times.

            • Louise Kane says:


              and some other discouraging and terrible bill being passed, this one in Georgia. Id like to know what these legislators would vote if they actually saw the animals that are used as bait being hunted. Who would condone this?

            • WM says:


              Not sure why you are directing this stuff to me. I don’t like it either. I just don’t believe there are all that many that participate in these events; just an intuition. Open to seeing (verifiable)data anyone wants to supply. And, do recall in some of these rural states the belief is that self-help for whatever reason (recreation/bounty competition) reduces the number of whatever it is that is deemed unwanted vermin/varmints by the state they are in. And, we certainly can disagree about the science behind it, but some states are still paying to have unwanted critters removed, or encouraging it one way or the other.

              • Nancy says:

                “Not sure why you are directing this stuff to me”

                Got the feeling from your recent posts you were doubting the “crow killing” contests WM.

              • WM says:

                ++ you were doubting the “crow killing” contests WM.++

                Not doubting the fact that they are held, only that a high school specifically would hold a contest to raise money, AND, more importantly, that a state game/wildlife department would sponsor or endorse it directly with some kind of advertising. That was all. Disgusting if those parts are true, and it appears they are.

          • Louise Kane says:


            bizarrely enough this is going around today on all kinds of sites

            man shoots labrador with semi automatic in front of 13 year old owner. Listen to the story and you decide was he justified or trigger happy and well armed.

    • rork says:

      “It’s a spectacle sure to inspire the next killer-in-waiting to turn their semi-automatic on their fellow classmates.”

      I think the gatherings to teach kids how to ice fish are really disturbing. Invertebrates are sometimes killed in ways too cruel to describe here, and fish are tortured or even eaten. These people are training a new generation of murderers that our prisons will be unable hold, and eventually lead to anarchy. They try to lull you in with the claim that its just a right of free association too, using the constitution as a means to justify their atrocities, but we know they are really terrorists.

      • wolf moderate says:

        Society is so much worse than prior generations.

        Scalping living humans, duels in the streets (including a vice president), killing bison for hides and/or to break native Americans spirit are much better than the current generation.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          And we have discussed this before, I do not want any posts from you or concerning me. Somehow I got pulled into your crap and I don’t want anything to do with it.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          We’re not still doing most of those things today?

      • Ida Lupines says:

        I’m going to ask the moderators to delete your post mentioning anything do do with me.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          Or make that ‘to do’ with me. I don’t need to be harassed by you.

          • wolf moderate says:

            Ummm sounds good if that’s directed towards me.

            • Ida Lupines says:

              It does look confusing. I answered your comment about prior generations.

              The other posts were directed to Rork, for deliberately attacking me. I wish there was a way to block his harassing comments, and I would ask the moderators to delete it.

              • rork says:

                Forgive me, I was making fun of Louise, and had no idea you were talking to me, since my comment had nothing to do with you. See how I quoted Louise at the start, and how you didn’t even have a comment below her’s? Thanks for helping to clarify, wolf moderate.

      • Louise Kane says:

        Rork, sorry to disappoint you but i did not write “It’s a spectacle sure to inspire the next killer-in-waiting to turn their semi-automatic on their fellow classmates.”
        I have no idea who did write it, it was part of the original post objecting to the event. Just in a sarcastic bitchy mood today?

        • rork says:

          Disappointed, no. Sarcastic, always. No need for sorrow.
          I am expressing that I think trying to stop gatherings of hunters, anglers, or mushroom collectors is misguided, that the more ridiculous statements are counterproductive, that being against free association will seem bad to many citizens in my country, and that most such gatherings will seem just fine to most of the people. Trying to single a few out is more about bunny-hugging than biology.

      • Louise Kane says:

        my mistake I forgot to put quotation marks in and where it was from… how would you know!
        anyhow I did not write that but was disturbed to see another killing contest.

      • Louise Kane says:

        To clarify these comments came to me in a coyote conservation alliance I belong to…

        “Crow Killing Contest Sponsored By Sasakwa High In Oklahoma

        The Oklahoma “game” department just announced that the senior class of Sasakwa High is sponsoring a crow-killing contest, set for the beginning of March—complete with prize money for whoever murders the most crows. It’s a spectacle sure to inspire the next killer-in-waiting to turn their semi-automatic on their fellow classmates.

        Email The Principal:

        Call Coordinator Debra Thompson at Sasakwa High School at 405-941-3213.”

        My comments preceded

    • LM says:

      Great news. That’s quite the job, standing on helicopter rungs shooting those nets. I don’t know anything about Bighorn sheep but they seem to handle the capture ok. Are they susceptible to capture myopathy like other species. Goslin mountain is very impressive from the East (?) side. Do they still run domestic sheep in the area – I’ve only seen cows but there’s alot of mesh wire fencing along the FG side.

      • Jeff says:

        I don’t know Goslin Mtn, I’ve seen sheep in most of the major river canyons of Utah and have always wondered where the mysterious delineation between desert and RM bighorn sheep begins/ends. Politically in Utah SFW and the Woolgrowers might go head to head, especially given the difficulty of sheep and this particular success story.

  54. Kathleen says:

    History repeating itself? “Fur dealers could trap beavers under proposed law change”

    Excerpt: “Licensed fur dealers could trap beavers under legislation recently introduced by lawmakers.
    The Michigan Trappers and Predator Callers Association pushed for the legislation that is sponsored by Sen. Thomas Casperson, R-Escanaba.

    “Beavers can be trapped now, but this measure would allow fur dealers to trap- something that has been outlawed at least as far back as the early 1900s.”

    • Immer Treue says:


      Not to sound the broken record, but the tentacles of the trapping industry are extensive. And with the neo demand for fur, a keen eye must be focused on what happens with the fur bearers in this country

    • LM says:

      I just saw an update by Wildearthguardians Beaver project. It did not mention this proposed change. Is there a link to sign a petition against ? It makes me sick to hear this. We have beavers along part of a 2 1/2 mile stretch of river bordering our place. The areas they are damming have been heavily eroded by livestock and flooding. The beavers are doing a great job but I worry about the neighbors shooting them. They say they plug up their irrigation pipes. I’m hoping to bring the Nature Conservancy in to assist with our conservation efforts. The thrill of the week is I saw an Otter today. I’ve never seen one in the wild before. Beautiful swimmer – at first I thought it was a beaver, but he popped his head out of the water and watched us ride by. Wonderful !

  55. Leslie says:

    similar with the controversy over non-native Fallow white deer in Pt. Reyes. The park service was going to shoot them all, until there was an uproar. Now they are doing a sterilization program. I think a stupid waste of money and effort. They are not native, should have simply been shot as they take up feed from the Tule elk and native deer.

    • rork says:

      Chincoteague (VA) still has free-ranging sika deer and ponies on a National Park. Shameless.

      • LM says:

        The ponies put Chincoteague on the commercial tourism map for over 50 years. The population is managed through contraception and the herd is captured and culled every year. The ponies sell for alot of money. I’ve never heard one complaint about how they are managed – the fire department makes money, the merchants make money, the adopters get a nice pony – what’s wrong with that ? Everybody goes away happy. I don’t know about the deer but they probably have a season on them, too. Maybe ALL the wild horse herds should be managed at the local level ? Let the advocates and the ranchers duke it out.

        • WM says:

          Chincoteague is a National Wildlife Refuge (not a national park), and that is the difference, to some extent, in how it is managed. Hunting of deer (by species) and sale of the special horses there are integral parts of the management program.

          • WM says:

            Sorry, its a little more complicated. Companion island next to it is, Assateague Island. There are two horse herds, one owned by a volunteer fire department (some are sold), and the other “owned” by the National Park Service in the Maryland portion – don’t know what NPS does with its excess.



            • aves says:

              Assateague Island National Seashore and Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge are both on Assateague Island. The National Seashore is mostly on the Maryland side and the NPS “manages” their pony herds through contraception. The National Wildlife Refuge is on the Virginia side and “manages” their pony herds by rounding them up every summer and selling the year’s foals to benefit the local fire department. Long ago, most of the town of Chincoteague (on nearby Chincoteague Island) burned down while they waited for outside help, hence the tradition involving the local fire department.

              I am more familar with Chincoteague NWR which has many areas fenced off to prevent the ponies from damaging the more sensitive ecological areas. There is no such fencing to keep the sika deer (a Japanese elk) at bay. I visit every year and am not impressed with the ponies or sikas. The refuge is an excellent place to view wildlife, including federally endangered Delmarva fox squirrels and piping plovers, as well as river otters, wintering waterfowl, and this winter, snowy owls.

              • LM says:

                Aves, thanks for the info. I haven’t been there in many many years and don’t remember hearing about the Sika deer. I would like to kayak around the island someday.

              • LM says:

                You’ve probably heard the other “theory” about how the ponies got there. Anyway, in the old days they were sought after by the horse people in Northern VA.for their kids as field hunters. They were bigger and more tractable than the Shetland or Welsh ponies.

            • LM says:

              WM, I don’t know about the NPS management of the Assateague Island ponies, but I will find out. I just know about the Chincoteague ponies because I always wanted one growing up, I still do – they are very nice ponies. Anyway, the AI ponies were the test group for Gus Cothran & Paricia Fazio, who developed the contraception method over a decade ago.

     See p. 14

              • Nancy says:


                The swim to the mainland was tough on the ponies, especially the foals from what I can recall and why they had a lot of boats helping the ponies along.

                Had a neighbor (where I grew up in VA) who bought a foal in one of the auctions. Claimed she was a distant relative of the famous:


                • LM says:

                  Nancy, Great memories. Read the “Misty of Chincoteague” series many times. My neighbor, over the river and through the woods, had a big dk bay Chincoteague pony mare named “Woody” that I used to ride alot before I got my own horse. Woody was bit by a fox and died of rabies. It was devastating. Her owner & my friend had to endure the shot series. I think we were 8 yrs old at the time.

                  What part of VA are you from ?

              • Nancy says:

                Grew up in Fairfax, LM. Back when the population was less than 1/2 a million. Lots of country roads to roam…on horseback. Creeks and fields to play in.

                Now I think its well over 5 million.

                • LM says:

                  Same, McLean – when the main intersection (Old Dominion & Chain Bridge rd) was a dirt road and there was an Esso station on the corner –
                  imagine that !

                • LM says:

                  Same, McLean – when the main intersection (Old Dominion & Chain Bridge rd) was dirt and there was an ESSO station on the corner –
                  imagine that !

              • Nancy says:

                LM – remember when Tyson’s Corner (and the surrounding area) was just farm land ? 🙂

        • rork says:

          Maybe we should put some zebras on those islands, maybe some giraffes too, the tourons will love it. Lets manage according to popularity.

          WM below: I’m talking about good rather than legal. I very much appreciate reminders and lessons of history, jurisdiction, and law though.

  56. Louise Kane says:

    I was gone for the last month to Bahamas for a project. I realized had not seen anything by Savebears?

    • Nancy says:

      Might want to pour through a few past posts Louise, to find out why SB left the WN blog.

      • Louise Kane says:

        thats mysterious, I hope not tragic. despite our sparring and at time sangry exchanges!

    • Jeff N. says:


      What happened with SB was certainly building but the last straw was a response to a Ken Cole article/post where he made a threatening comment towards Ken….to paraphrase ” Ken, you better hope I don’t meet you out in the woods” and then he excused himself from further participation.

      He took a bit a grief for his threatening comments towards Ken and his biography/credentials also came into question from a handful on here as well.

      That’s about it in a nut shell.

      • Louise Kane says:

        Jeff thanks for the briefing and also for the links to the articles the other day. I think people get pretty heated sometimes…..and say things they could regret!

  57. Immer Treue says:

    Who needs wolves when idiots such as this imbecile are out on the trails. Snowmobiler kills (shoots) moose.

    • WM says:

      First impression – DISGUSTING! And, very, very sad. What a friggin’ senseless waste.

      Always easy to second guess someone. Given the helmet camera lens appears to be wide angle this young bull moose was likely much closer than the video shows. However, it appears the guy could have retreated instead of advancing on the moose, and initiating it to charge.

      Without knowing more I would still be in favor of citing the guy for wildlife harassment and poaching, wherever this event took place. Just happened to have side arm, along. That alone ought to say something about intention and potential empowerment. Geez.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      We hear so much about the ethics of hunters, but I fear the behavior in this article is the disgusting norm, at least for modern times. They just can’t seem to help themselves, no matter how the media and federal and state agencies try to cover for them and build them up. The ethical hunters must be a thing of the past, just like everything else. I hope people realize that we are allowing people to behave this way, with current laws and attitudes. I haven’t watched this particular video, but I have seen and heard enough about it to make an opinion. Everyone wants their 15 minutes of notoriety.

      • Harley says:

        Ida, how can we be certain this was a hunter? Just playing the oppositional advocate at the moment. Everyone who carries a gun is not a hunter.

        And no, I am NOT defending the guy, just asking a question.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          Harley – Yes, you are right. I thought of that after I wrote it, this person was not a hunter. I should have written it as someone enjoying a wreckreational activity.

          Louise, I wouldn’t say I don’t like hunters as such a broad statement (my Dad was a commercial fisherman and hunter) – I just don’t like what passes for hunting today. I know there are decent people who hunt and fish, and I can accept subsistence hunting. I just don’t understand why anyone would want to kill for sport. Today it seems like there is no respect for the environment or the animal, and it is reduced to its killing element only. Some of the terminology used by today’s hunters is appalling, and the sense of entitlement of being guaranteed animals to kill.

      • topher says:

        An idiot with a sidearm hardly qualifies as a hunter. Ethical hunters are the norm in the group that I hunt with. You can hunt ethically or you can hunt with someone else.

        • Louise Kane says:

          I think what Ida is trying to say is that perhaps laws ought to be a lot more proactive in protecting wildlife and curtailing violence with the blatant and seemingly increasing levels of violence against animals that are being seen across the internet and the media. Is it that we see more violence and abuse because there is more or does the internet and media expose the abusers more easily? I can’t imagine how one animal makes it to a flu life span with virtually no protected areas from human harassment whether from hunting, poaching or creeps like this guy. Until the laws change though its going to continue and its ignorant to argue these are isolated incidents. There are too many horrible instances proudly documented by fools and creeps out there to ignore.

          • Ida Lupines says:

            Yes. I don’t like the ones we see on the internet, I will admit to that. The laws need to be changed to separate the boys from the men, IMO.

    • Harley says:

      Would shooting in the air of scared the moose off?

      That was difficult to watch.

    • Immer Treue says:

      I would hazard a guess, the clearing/lake was visable/known. Wait til moose moves on its own, or take a chance and have to kill it. Did not mean to post this as anti-hunting, because I believe any hunter with a thimble full of brains would have known what to do. The gun empowered this individual, sort of a stand your ground with a confused animal. What made it double tough to watch, it should not have happened.

      • Nancy says:

        I was in a similar situation about 15 years ago Immer. Set out one afternoon on a snowmobile, with one of those old fashion video cameras, hoping to film a moose in a nearby subdivision. (One guy in the area had been feeding the moose for years, a big no-no but he did it anyway)

        Came upon a big cow moose in someone’s driveway and got off to film her. Moments later two dogs came racing down the driveway, barking at this moose. She was pissed but had some options – turn and run up the road, run into the willows across the road or run down the road I was on. I didn’t even wait for her decision.

        Snowmobiles back in those days didn’t have reverse, so I grabbed the camera (it was rented… as was the snowmobile 🙂 and fled up the hillside, not an easy route in two feet of snow but when I looked back, she had thankfully chosen the willows.

        If they ever catch this guy he ought to hung up by his balls, because he had a few options – he could of taken the other trail or he could of just sat there and waited (the noise he was making seem to only confuse this young moose and draw him closer) Or, he could of bailed off his rig and yelled at whoever was behind him to do the same and hugged a nearby tree for awhile, there were plenty of trees around them and it might of defused the situation eventually.

        A link to the video was here also:

        and from the comments there, anti and otherwise, for once everyone agrees on something – this guy was a F–king idiot (although one poster complained about it being on the SWW page – ammunition for activists?)

        Killing this moose out of season (from comments) obviously enrages the hunting crowd out there, but killing this moose because this guy was “packin firepower” should be a wakeup call to all of us concerned about wildlife, in wild places where more and more idiots (humans) are allowed to roam, uneducated.

        • Nancy says:

          Oh and an after thought – few in our species realize just how hard it is for wildlife to get through winters in areas out here and elsewhere, when snowfall is above normal.

          Got 2 feet in my yard right now and its a bitch/ hard to navigate in.

          Plowed roads and groomed snowmobile trails do ofter a break to many other species just trying to cope/exist with winters like this.

          Would love to see some studies on that 🙂

          • Immer Treue says:


            I agree with you wholeheartedly. People need to understand the hardship all wildlife endures during the Winter. Pack trails help.

            As an aside, my first experiences with moose were on Isle Royale. Encounters with bulls, cows with calves, and a couple bulls during early rut. Trails there are narrow and rocky. Ya wait and give the animal the opportunity to find a way out, or you go in another direction.

            The snowmobile hand cannon moron, as you and others have stated, had options other than shooting. That animal did not have to die!

        • Louise Kane says:

          “but killing this moose because this guy was “packin firepower” should be a wakeup call to all of us concerned about wildlife, in wild places where more and more idiots (humans) are allowed to roam, uneducated.”

        • Harley says:

          WAIT!! Hold the press! (talk about an antiquated term!) There must be a mistake. We have found something to agree upon??? It’s the end isn’t it? I’m gonna start stocking water right now!


          Sorry, I couldn’t resist. It’s very refreshing to see a consensus on something from both sides!!

  58. Louise Kane says:

    New Farm bill more subsidies for livestock producers…
    WM this can be found on the USDA site!

    “New Farm Bill Provides Permanent Livestock Disaster Assistance Programs
    The 2014 Farm Bill, formally known as the Agricultural Act of 2014, makes the Livestock Forage Program (LFP) and Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP) permanent programs and provides retroactive authority to cover eligible losses back to Oct. 1, 2011.

    LFP provides compensation to eligible producers who suffered grazing losses due to drought and fire. LIP provides compensation to livestock producers who suffered livestock death losses in excess of normal mortality due to adverse weather and attacks by animals reintroduced into the wild by the Federal Government or protected by Federal law, including wolves and avian predators.

    USDA is determined to make implementing the livestock disaster programs a top priority and plans to open program enrollment by April 15, 2014.

    As USDA begins implementing the livestock disaster assistance programs, producers should record all pertinent information of natural disaster consequences, including:

    Documentation of the number and kind of livestock that have died, supplemented if possible by photographs or video records of ownership and losses

    Dates of death supported by birth recordings or purchase receipts
    Costs of transporting livestock to safer grounds or to move animals to new pastures
    Feed purchases if supplies or grazing pastures are destroyed
    Crop records, including seed and fertilizer purchases, planting and production records
    Pictures of on-farm storage facilities that were destroyed by wind or flood waters
    Evidence of damaged farm land.
    Many producers still have questions. USDA is in the process of interpreting Farm Bill program regulations. Additional information will be provided once the enrollment period is announced. In the meantime, producers can review the LIP and LFP Fact Sheets. Thanks for your patience as USDA works diligently to put Farm Bill programs into action to benefit the farmers and ranchers of rural America.

    Questions? Please click here to locate your nearest county office”

    • LM says:

      Geez, What is the cost to the taxpayer of this program ? Is the PL grazing fee program included in this because it already factors in livestock transportation costs to allotments as well as “conservation” costs to the permittees.

  59. Elk375 says:

    Here is a third article on wildlife from the Billings Gazette, it is about trapping and transporting bighorn sheep from Wild Horse in Flathead Lake.

    This is directed to Ida and Louise who dislike hunters. Louise feels that every time a trophy hunter kills an animal for the wall it is one less for her to see in the wild. The death of one trophy ram will allow for the establishment of an additional 60 sheep in two distinct different herds in Montana. With one less sheep to view there are going to be an additional 60 wild sheep for wildlife viewers to view; it is a win-win situation. My question is why doesn’t some wildlife viewer put up $500,000 and purchase the tag and not go hunting. The reason is that wildlife viewers do not have $500,000 to purchase the tag (either do I).

    This sheep trapping event was paid for from the sale of one Montana bighorn sheep tag. The tag in 2013 sold for $500,000 and 2014 tag sold for $320,000. The money paid for the auction tag has does wonders for Montana sheep herds. This weekend in Missoula the Montana chapter of the Wild Sheep Foundation will be holding there annual fund raiser which will raise between $100,000 to $120,000 for wild sheep in Montana. Non hunters are welcome to come and out bid the hunters and raise even more money.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Elk, I would not say that I dislike all hunters.

      • Yvette says:

        I would not say that I dislike all hunters.

        Ida, you just made me laugh……a good laugh. I’m with you; I don’t dislike all hunters, either. No sarcasm, I mean it.But, I do about the seemingly requisite picture of hunter and his ‘harvest’. Have you noticed how many hunters feel obligated to pose with their prey? It seems to go: point, shoot, hit target, pose for picture.

        • Yvette says:

          It should read, “I do wonder…”

        • Ida Lupines says:

          🙂 I hate that posing too. There’s a quality about it that I can’t figure out, de-living thing-izing and not respecting wildlife. It’s not the same as 100 years ago.

        • WM says:

          Yvette, Ida,

          I’ll take a wild guess here, and suggest there is something deeper. Perhaps it is memorializing an accomplishment, a means of recording the recognition or needing some sort of validation. Maybe a psychologist or anthropologist could actually say what it is, much better.

          Yvette, don’t you suppose your Native American ancestors sought recognition or appreciation for getting a large, healthy animal that would feed the family and others in the living group, provide skins for warmth, antlers for tools. I expect if we all went back far enough in our family trees, we could find the need to maybe brag a little over taking an animal, and if there had been a way to memorialize it in an image that might be referred to later, over and over again, they would have taken pictures, too. We have done that with other symbols of accomplishment given by others to us – an award, a bowling trophy, etc.

          A photo, perhaps, is a reward we give ourselves, and a means to trigger a memory years later, and to even to prove to others our story is true. It is NOT disrespectful IMHO; it is exactly the opposite.

          • Yvette says:

            WM, As far as ancestors, I think it’s likely they were recognized for hunter prowess. I really don’t have to go that far back. I have Native friends that have posed with their elk, and it annoys me. I’ve never seen my nephew or his dad pose for their elk, and they get at least one per year. Probably, there is a picture stuffed away somewhere.

            I’m not completely anti-hunting, but I am bugged with those that hunt for sport, and they seem to be the ones that love to pose with their kills. That is strange behavior to me. Someone takes a life and then they pose with its lifeless body with these big cheesy grins? That’s hard for me; I admit it.

            Hunting is something I’m trying to work out for myself, and be as reasonable. It’s hard for me to find a comfortable balance without being hypocritical. (I’m not vegan or vegetarian) At least with elk and deer they’ve never had to experience a nasty feedlot or the kind of abuse we saw in that dairy video.

            • LM says:

              For Native people, wasnt it subsistence first, adulation, trophies and adornment second and the second was tied into the collective spirituality. I don’t recognize a spiritual connection in modern day trophy hunting, but then again modern day spirituality seems to be a strictly personal experience. The big issue I have with trophy hunting is when there is an obvious population decline going on (which everyone is aware of) In that case shouldnt the trophy area tags should be the first to go on hold ?

              • WM says:


                ++…shouldn’t the trophy area tags should be the first to go on hold ?++

                Game/wildlife departments all over this country do that sort of thing regularly (subject to political pressures). It’s called wildlife management; they change harvest prescriptions all the time. Many hunting units have spike only seasons, while others have less than or more than three point restrictions. These accomplish a couple things, managing for age structure of the species (and sex with cow permits) and seasonal distribution of hunters, some of whom might want a different type of hunting experience/success possibility. Archery, muzzleloader general season, and the greater success possibility if one goes for a spike or a cow/doe. Some game units in certain states are managed solely for “trophy” animals. Typically these have a limited number of tags for the unit, and are often awarded luck of the draw.

                Population decline has more to do with young of the year survival. Predators factor into this, and in some units bears, cougars and wolves (newer risk in some areas and that is why managers/hunters don’t like them so much) are the drivers of population decline, because young of the year don’t replace the population taken off by hunting or other mortality. Habitat changes or annual climatic conditions also play into this.

                • LM says:

                  WM, in the two trophy units adjacent to us it’s a 20 yr wait for a tag, it’s probably the “once in a lifetime trophy tag” and it would be very politically unpopular to tamper with those units. But, the animals they haul out of there EVERY YEAR makes me wonder about tag allocation. The other political piece is that it depends on who you talk to about what’s causing the decline, the locals blame it on predation and over allocation of tags. I called on a roadkill deer that was next to our CR because she had a collar and the game ranger who picked it up said he believes its lack of forage and that I do agree with. My hope is that they figure out the real cause, prioritize based on that and have the political will to exercise it.

              • WM says:

                LM, Sorry but I can’t recall in which state you currently live.

          • Nancy says:

            “I expect if we all went back far enough in our family trees, we could find the need to maybe brag a little over taking an animal, and if there had been a way to memorialize it in an image that might be referred to later, over and over again, they would have taken pictures, too”

            Its interesting to note though WM, that you never (atleast on the many game hunting sites) see some guy (or gal) possing with a cow elk or mulie doe.
            The difference between feeding one’s family and feeding one’s psyche 🙂

            • WM says:

              There are hundreds of thousands of pictures of cows/does and smaller bulls/bucks on refrigerator doors, desk photos, cork boards and in photo albums across America.

              Probably even a bunch of web photos on the social media forums with the same content, maybe on Flckr, or Facebook, even. What you forget, Nancy, is that typically fewer than 20% of bull elk harvested annually are large branch antlered bulls (trophy animals). That means most of us are grateful for whatever makes it into the freezer. Cow/doe permits are common and may make up to 1/3 to nearly half of the harvest prescriptions. So, don’t believe everything you see on the internet as reflecting reality.

              By the way, Bugle magazine, of the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, regularly has photos of smaller bulls and cows in a section which appears in each and every issue, sent in by readers. It is about the people and their desire to seek recognition for themselves, their friends and family.

              Don’t tell me Ug or Runs like a Wolf didn’t sit around a campfire and recall a successful hunt with a few pats on the back by those with full bellies and skins to sleep on. Smiles all around. If they had a camera, don’t you suppose there would have been a photo or two? I guess they just memorialized it with a little paint in a cave or sheltered rock wall – depicted by a stick figure with bow, arrow in flight and an animal of some sort.

              • Ida Lupines says:

                That might not be so bad, but the reason behind a lot of these Facebook and other postings isn’t that, because they come with very nasty captions to go with them. It isn’t adult, rational, or conservation minded in the slightest and should be an embarrassment for state wildlife agencies.

              • WM says:

                ++…should be an embarrassment for state wildlife agencies.++

                I should thing the greater embarrassment should be shouldered by the parents that produce these kinds of kids that do this crap (later becoming adults with screwed up values). You are looking in the wrong direction, Ida.

              • Elk375 says:


                William Clark left the main expedition in July of 1806 with 12 members and journeyed down the Yellowstone River. East of Billings along the rim rock bluffs they encountered numerous big horn sheep. Clark entered into his journal that he had spend some time trying to kill a mountain sheep with large horns. The first trophy hunter in the west.

    • LM says:

      I had no idea the fees were that high. That explains why the FS/BLM rounded up and removed horses in the Pryors a few years ago. In a Memorandum re: removal decision, one of the reasons stated was that two hunters’ had tags and it was their lifetime dream to hunt a Bighorn. I was kind of surprised they even included that part in the memorandum. It definitely did not go over well with the wild horse & anti-hunting folks.

  60. Louise Kane says:

    Elk, your article is interesting but not persuading me that trophy killing is a good conservation strategy.

    I have a question and some thoughts/comments.
    1) Why are there no predators on the island? are they killed by wildlife management actions or they just never existed?
    2) were the bighorn sheep here native or introduced
    I know nothing about this island or this issue and those answers would help me to understand the moving of the big horn sheep every year, and influence my thinking about these actions.

    Some thoughts
    You directed your comment to Louise and Ida who don’t like hunters. I think that’s an oversimplification. I’ve known many hunters through my father’s world over the years and through our fishing community. Many of them have been close friends although most are now what i would call reformed. As they got older some, including my dad, started to dislike killing things whether fish or animals. I think its fair to say that I don’t appreciate hunting and I find trophy hunting appalling and as for the people it depends on who they are and why they are hunting.

    as for trophy hunting, much of what I feel about trophy hunting is a visceral like reaction to killing a beautiful wild thing for fun or sport. and while I do selfishly wish there were more animals for people like me to see and experience in the wild, it’s not just that the animal is removed and “is one less (for Louise) to see in the wild”,

    I don’t believe that killing wild animals for trophies and sport is a defensible, necessary or humane activity. I understand that this is a conservation technique that is being employed and defended worldwide. Yet, I find using auctions to kill an animal to support wildlife conservation is bizarre and twisted. I find it ironic and disturbing that people will pay so much money to be able to kill/shoot something. The whole concept is creepy. Nothing about it implies conservation….There are people that donate huge sums of money or land or parts of their estate to protect land, or to a particular habitat to prevent it from being developed or destroyed or to protect wildlife. The words conservationist seem more apt here. I have a lot of respect for that. I can’t understand an urge to kill something so strongly that you might pay hundreds of thousands of dollars or more, like the trophy hunter who won the right to kill a black rhino. An urge to kill that particular animal seems as though it has much more to do with wanting to kill than wanting to conserve, or to enjoy the experience of seeing that animal in the wild. The argument that killing is conservation does not ring true to me.

    as for your article, I believe humans tinker with our environment much more frequently and with much more intensity than we need to. I worked with NOAA for some time in a division where one of our missions among many was to conduct habitat restoration. Save for removing dams, which felt very satisfying, I thought much money was wasted and some of the habitats that were restored had already converted to newer habitats that supported whole communities of organisms that had adapted to the new habitat. Sometimes, I thought the actions were very destructive.

    I don’t know or have all the answers for sure but I do feel that state and federal agencies that manage wildlife are corrupted or at the least unstable and inconsistent. That’s not to say there are not good and educated people working there but far too often these people are subject to the political whims of the directors and agency heads who make decisions based on budget objectives and or directives that are tied to policy decisions that make it easier for the agency or office to get more money allocated every year under the federal budget.

    Wildlife management is very fractured….

    to get back to your post and the bighorn being killed to support conservation

    I feel sickened by the thought of killing a wild animal as a trophy or for sport. I don’t think we have the right, legal or not.

  61. Ida Lupines says:

    I knew it was bad when WM said the moose video was disgusting – he usually tries to see both sides. I do hope something is done about it.

  62. aves says:

    NY Times magazine article on bringing back extinct species, particularly the passenger pigeon:

    • LM says:

      I think Ralph’s going to have to start a whole new link to tackle this issue. This part struck me in a funny way,

      “But nature is totally random. Nature makes monsters. Nature makes threats. Many of the things that are most threatening to us are a product of nature.”

      like human beings ?

      • Ralph Maughan says:


        Not too long ago I posted an article on this that I wrote. It was perhaps six months ago.

  63. Yvette says:

    This is an interesting op-ed from Michigan.

    • rork says:

      Thanks, missed that. I thought it a good summary. Note the counterargued comments that science should be used instead of popular opinion – the citizens cannot be trusted, democratic process in wildlife management is inappropriate. Scruples are ignored when not in your favor.

      I might have highlighted one carrot: We could “license” (old sense of the word, perhaps “give permits” is better) to landholders to kill wolves where useful, and that might include everywhere within 4 miles of Ironwood or Sault Sainte Marie for example. My carrot being Yoopers and their guests get to do all of the wolf killing, no trophy wolf-hunter “trolls” (residents of lower peninsula) allowed – whoppieeee.
      Note that this kind of permitting requires an inquisition of some kind though, maybe we’d call it a wolf board, on which we’d need honest expert people. There might be constant bickering over if this or that wolf should have died or not. Maybe that’s healthy.

  64. Nancy says:

    “The recent federal Farm Bill made the Livestock Indemnity Payments Program permanent, allowing livestock producers to be compensated for livestock losses due to weather, or due to animals reintroduced or protected by the federal government”

    This part of the livestock industry has been declining for years yet we taxpayers continues to support it. What, so the 1% can have their chops & rack of lamb?

  65. Louise Kane says:

    not exactly wildlife but a law by the legislature that enacts the ludicrous and destructive state policies in Idaho

  66. Louise Kane says:

    should say bill by the legislature…

  67. Louise Kane says:

    comments on trophy hunting grizzlies and black bears in BC
    value of bears alive vs dead……

  68. Louise Kane says:

    poacher extraordinaire
    throw away the key

    • Ida Lupines says:

      What a whopper of a tale. I hope this guy doesn’t quit his day job to become a fiction writer.

      • W.Hong says:

        How can you tell it is a story Ms Lupines? Thank you for an answer.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          I strongly suspect it is, considering the fact that all of those involved are long-time wolf haters and not the most objective bunch. Aerial drones, stealth bombers and elite Special Forces, out for one wolf is a little far-fetched, I think.

          • W.Hong says:

            Ok, I am still confused, the link you posted took me to a story from May 2006, I guess I am not understanding how this shows it is a story?

            • Ida Lupines says:

              Well, now that it is 2014, it shows that there is a long-standing animosity which sheds doubt on their reports of wolf attacks, IMO. But apparently even with wolf delisting, a wolf control board, and very liberal hunting seasons, they are still not satisfied.

              Have a nice evening, all –

            • Nancy says:

              W. Hong – head back up the blog til you come to a link Harley posted on the “sun valley colt” a couple of days ago. Read the link, then read the following comments (& additional links) posted.

              You might then be able to understand where Ida is coming from.

    • Immer Treue says:

      The only things missing are the flaming torches, black and white film and fake backdrops. I wonder if they’re carrying silver bullets.

  69. Yvette says:

    I saw this on facebook earlier.

    I guess the Choboni business doesn’t have the power of the ag industry.

    Just now saw another facebook post from a reliable source. Checked it out and ba-boom.

    So the slaughter begins.

    Idaho: America’s Killing Fields.

    • wolf moderate says:

      There are more wolves in Idaho than any other western state.

      • Immer Treue says:

        Wolf Mod,

        I’m not against managaging wolf populations. And this is not to instigate a rumble with you. In addition, I realize that wolves travel in and out of Zones, but the sources of some of the BS out there have no limits.

        From the article:
        “Fish and Game estimates there were 75 -100 wolves in the Lolo zone at the start of the 2013 hunting season…”

        Last elk count 2010 at a tad over 2,000. Based upon some of the estimates (one just published in a recent “book”) of how many elk these wolves eat annually, there should be no elk remaining in the Lolo.

        It just doesn’t add up. If there are that many wolves, there must be a prey base to keep them there. Manage the damn wolf population but the exaggerations on the number of elk killed and eaten by wolves has got to end.

      • Yvette says:

        There are more wolves in Idaho than any other western state.

        Idaho also has more wilderness with unpaved roads than any other state, so they probably have the best environment for wolves. It’s obvious the people that run ID don’t want wolves. Just kill all of them and be done with it. Then they can have the elk farm they so badly want. Give it a few years and let’s see what ecological repercussions arise.

        • Louise Kane says:

          Yvette more importantly perhaps is that Idaho’s public lands total some 60% and is one of the least populated states. Allowing states to manage wildlife so irresponsibly on public lands deserves a good challenge. What Idaho is doing to wolves they do in Wilderness areas and on public lands that belong to all of us.


          Total Land Base: 53,530,880 acres
          Forest Service (NFS) Acres: 20.5 million
          BLM Acres: 11.9 million
          Population: 1,466,465

          Forest Service Percentage: 38%
          BLM Percentage: 22%

          Forest Service Data:
          BLM Data: From various state office websites.
          Population Data: 2006 U.S. Census Bureau estimates.

          • Yvette says:

            Yes, I agree with you. I saw the news on the slaughter of those 23 wolves not long after it went public. It hit hard. Right now, I don’t have the words to express my disgust and anger with the handling of wolves in ID.

            I don’t see how it will ever change as long as the ranchers continue to graze livestock open range on public lands, and with rates calculated so low.

  70. Ralph Maughan says:

    With this post now well over 400 comments, we will be replacing it soon with a new “Do you have wildlife news?”

    • LM says:

      Ralph, everybody must have cabin fever or it’s just too wintry & windy to work outside. Its good therapy; read about wildlife issues, get inspired, wait for a little break in the weather and go looking. Two days ago I saw a river Otter – it made my day 🙂

      • Yvette says:

        I’ve only seen one once, but it was so exciting. I was walking to the creek to collect samples when I felt vibrations and then some bushes shake. Low and behold a curious otter was running around and probably wondering what the heck we were doing. He was so funny how he kept inching up on one of my co-workers that was in the creek. I’ve pulled samples from that creek for years and that is the only time I saw that otter.

      • Nancy says:

        Can relate to that “smile” and the made my day comment, LM!

        Saw 3 otters while in the Bob Marshall a few years ago. It was in late May and the river was high but there was no mistaking their signature sound.

        Watched them frolic and dive for a good ten mintues along the shoreline before they disappeared down the river – their home and playground – priceless 🙂

  71. Louise Kane says:

    bipartisan sportsman act and sportsman heritage act supported by NRA being shoved down our throats again – at least SHARE

    these are terrible an terribly misleading bills

  72. Jerry Black says:

    23 Wolves killed by WS for IDFG in Lolo Pass Area
    (Defenders is “disappointed” and feels “deceived”)Geez! is all I’ll say about Defenders , knowing they have multiple supporters here.

    • JB says:

      I’m waiting for WM to chime in here and tell us how over the top and uncalled-for Defenders’ rhetoric is? 😉

  73. Ida Lupines says:

    More tragi-comedy from Idaho:

    Idaho Seeks Middle Ground on Wolf Control

    • Immer Treue says:


      Thanks. Very useful data.

    • LM says:

      Interesting. Just curious, how do they get the numbers ? Is it based on what is reported by the livestock producers when they apply for reimbursement for losses ?

      • Nancy says:

        That and I would think FW&P/Wildlife Services when they are called in to do first hand accounts of depredations.

        • LM says:

          It’s interesting that CO & UT, both without Wolf populations that we know of, have such high predation by Coyotes. Is it for a lack of wolves killing coyotes or an “animal husbandry” issue because there are no wolves to factor into management.

  74. Nancy says:

    Before the comments below the article start to pile up, its interesting to see the first pro & con response. One, hoping to keep what’s left of wilderness intact and another, ignoring our species inability to recognize our own carrying capacity:


    “the maximum, equilibrium number of organisms of a particular species that can
    be supported indefinitely in a given environment” 🙂

  75. Nancy says:

    See if this link shows up:


  76. sid says: maybe the slaughter planned for yellowstone bison can be averted at least for tb free bison and they can be offered to indian reservations, other national parks or the American Prairie reserve.

  77. Louise Kane says:

    Predators world wide facing threats from farmers and governments that pale their interests above healthy environments or preserving species. Dingoes in Australia

  78. Immer Treue says:

    Is anyone in the know about a credible source that supports the claim that only one of eight cattle/calf remains are found after killed by wolves? Thanks.

  79. Ida Lupine says:

    On a happier note, I have begun volunteering my time protecting my region’s endangered migrating fish (we participate population counts, educating, maintaining water access, and policing wardens 😉 ), migration season will be starting soon – we have a video counter, and we sometimes see interesting wildlife in addition to the fish. The other day it was a river otter swimming through/up the fish ladder(s). Yay!!!

  80. Louise Kane says:

    anyone know more about how these funds will be allocated and how each state received the portion it did?

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Oh boy. It is just so much bs. Maybe hunters and anglers from years past should be thanked for conservation (because they actually started it), but today’s are only hanging on to their coattails. Where are some real examples of conservation by hunters and anglers? They are leaving toxic lead in their wakes, and only because gun sales are so high is there any inadvertent or self-serving ‘benefit’ to conservation land. Nowhere does the administration ever commend non-consumptive users for the money they spend or efforts they’ve made to preserve wildlife and wildlands. A lot of tax money comes from the general fund too.

      From this administration, I’ve yet to hear once any concern for wildlands and wildlife in and of themselves, only in their relative benefit to humans. It’s all too one-sided. Even the monuments the President has designated are people first, and conservation second.

  81. Louise Kane says:

    wow environmental activists # 1 terrorist?

    • Louise Kane says:

      An excerpt from the interview.

      Ryan Shaprio is an MIT student writing his dissertation about the subject. Fascinating and disconcerting. Goes to the heart of Ralph’s recent post about the ag gag law in Idaho

      “AMY GOODMAN: I want to end—we have about a minute to go—with your slogan, “See something, leak something.”

      RYAN SHAPIRO: Right. So, secrecy is a cancer on the body of democracy. The records of government are the property of the people, but they’re consistently withheld from us on the basis of undefined national security. But as wrote Judge Murray Gurfein in his ruling against the Nixon administration’s infamous attempt to prevent The New York Times from publishing the leaked Pentagon Papers, “The security of the Nation is not at the ramparts alone. Security also lies in the value of our free institutions.” And so, building upon this ruling, we as a nation need to foster a broader conception of national security. And in the interest of promoting such a conception, a conception borne of the free exchange of ideas among an informed citizenry, I call upon all of those with access to unreleased records about illegal, immoral or unconstitutional government actions to return those records to their rightful owners: the American people. Or, “See something, leak something.” The viability of our democracy may depend upon it.”

      • WM says:

        The sad part about some of this animal rights stuff, and the enactment of these laws, including the federal AETA (Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act of 2006, is that Congress passed this stuff to keep some of these advocates from doing really stupid shit (like stealing or letting loose animals, burning research labs or sabotaging equipment, possibly destroying millions of dollars worth of research or industrial equipment). Maybe the law went a bit overboard.

        Senator Dianne Feinstein (CA – D) who usually finds herself opposing this kind of legislation, ironically, was a sponsor.

        So, one guy makes 600 FOIA requests in less than 2 years. The agencies and the FBI gotta love him already. Then when the records he requests in a narrow topic area have the potential to set a precedent for FOIA requests, if granted, across the board into truly more sensitive national security areas, he gets pissy. What’s not to like about that, or this particular guy?

      • WM says:

        Shapiro is a PhD student in the MIT HASTS program, an interesting but needed integrated subject area:

        From the MIT website:

        ++MIT’s Doctoral Program in History, Anthropology, and Science, Technology, and Society (HASTS) trains scholars to study science and technology as activities situated in social and cultural contexts. HASTS faculty examine expert as well as popular engagement with the processes and products of technological and scientific work, and conduct research across a spectrum of geographical areas and historical periods.++

        It appears to be a rather large program, with lots of grad students, covering many contemporary topics.

        I can see a budding wolf or large predator HASTS program scholar, maybe even a post-doc student, in the near future (if there already isn’t one).

  82. Louise Kane says:

    Traps banned Los Alamos County! one county at a time

    • Mike says:


    • Elk375 says:

      I read the article. It says that traps were banned from county lands. It is unclear whether they were banned county wide and could traps be banned on private property.

  83. Louise Kane says:

    Ecological Meltdown in Predator-Free Forest Fragments

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Trophic cascades in action (or inaction, as the case may be)! Great!

    • Louise Kane says:

      Pardon new term is streamer….terrible visual

      “Forensics lab staff observed a falcon or falcon-like bird with a plume of smoke streaming from its tail as it passed through the heat zone. The bird lost stability and descended, but the team could not locate it. The investigators could not identify many burning objects, which they call streamers.”

      • Ida Lupines says:

        Awful. We’re going about clean energy entirely the wrong way IMO, and still increasing drilling and fracking!

        Yellowstone the Next Bakken?

        We’re worrying about gravel roads and historic lookout towers when we need to be worrying about our insatiable demand for energy and what it is doing to the planet. We need to conserve and use less, and totally change our way of life to reduce our impact on the planet to even keep up with climate change. It ain’t gonna be easy.

        • Louise Kane says:

          well its interesting because we need renewable energy like solar but I think the considerations of placement and keeping wildlife safe need to be resolved. I don;t know enough about these towers but wonder why some kind of barrier could not be used to prevent the birds from entering the hot zone. I hope they wait until constructing another until this issue is resolved.

          • Immer Treue says:

            Not offering excuses, but so far the non-fossil fuel/renewable energy resource outfits appear to be caught in a giant Catch-22.

            • Louise Kane says:

              look at the dog video Immer you’ll love it
              I am secretly jealous and wish I could lay claim to my GSD being that amazing but his biggest trick is to make me adore him.

              • Immer Treue says:


                I saw it last week, and agree, pretty amazing. Are all dogs capable of this? I recall hanging around with an Alaskan Malamute club for a while, and they said AM’s do not accept obedience training well because they get bored with it.

                Some recent studies have suggested better bonding occurs between owner and dog when challenges are presented to the dog, problem solving…

                Some dogs, like some people respond. Wondered if I ever decided on breed besides GSD, what would it be? Probably lean toward a Border Collie, smaller size, intelligence… Much less need for dog capable of work (carrying pack or pulling a small sled). I know, sacrilege.

    • Yvette says:

      Oh no. This is horrible. Just imagine how bad it will get when/if we increase the number of large solar projects. This is a potentially huge problem and it will have to be resolved.

      The Audubon society will find a way to blame the loss of birds on domestic cats. {sarcasm}

  84. Louise Kane says:

    pardon not wildlife but amazing progeny of wolves or is that too much a weak link?

    this is pretty incredible and its not horrible news! Just take a minute to watch.

    • SAP says:

      I saw that – it’s pretty amazing! I know you didn’t put that label on it, but I’d argue that “smartest dog ever” is a really inaccurate label.

      “Jumpy” is clearly very obedient, and his person has clearly been persistent and clever at teaching him a lot of different commands. That’s very different from Jumpy being the smartest dog ever. Jumpy certainly is very intelligent to be able to learn that many commands.

      I could go on and on all day with stories of smart dogs working independently and making smart choices on the fly. Most dogs have a lot of innate intelligence, and when they live or work in a setting where they can express that, I’m continually amazed by them.

      When I first encountered Karelian bear dogs about 15 years ago, I had the impression that they were sort of brave, not-so-bright Kamikaze dogs. After a fair amount of experience, I have concluded that Karelians are very intelligent, perhaps among the most intelligent breeds. They are extremely independent and strong-willed, though. I would be surprised if a Karelian would put up with the barrage of commands that Jumpy tolerates — they lack the stockdog’s eagerness to please. No surprise there — they’re bred to hunt moose and grizzlies on their own, making their own choices on the fly.

      My own stockdog (border collie x kelpie) — I am sure I could teach him that routine, although he’d be more motivated by food rewards than by just getting to play with a particular toy. But — and this is hard to explain — he has really delivered for me. He has been a stone’s throw from grizzlies and has been a rock — completely reliable. Far closer to civilization, he responded to a small child ambushing him and grabbing his ear with a kind look and a kiss. I won’t even go into his feats herding cattle.

      Arbitrary commands to impress strangers — I think that actually hurts his feelings. On the other hand, though, learning a lot of commands and a “routine” is probably exactly the kind of mental challenge that a border collie type stockdog needs in order to stay sane in a non-rural setting.

      • Louise Kane says:

        “Far closer to civilization, he responded to a small child ambushing him and grabbing his ear with a kind look and a kiss. I won’t even go into his feats herding cattle.”

        he sounds like a wonderful dog. I agree with you that some dogs are not as much motivated to please and despite that quality are just as intelligent. Interesting about the Karelian. My dog is a mix of GSD and Akita. The Akita part is very independent and while he is very very intelligent he is bored by repetitive tasks and I respect that so I don’t ask him to do silly things even though he knows the commands. For example, the people at the bank love him and when we go in for visits a young woman makes a huge stink over him. She always asks for his paw and he looks at me like ho hum here we go again and then very quickly sits, gives one paw and then the next and sometimes rolls fast. Its like he gets all the most boring, uninspired, degrading tasks done all at once! Then he nicely takes his treat and nothing in the world could make him to the tricks again. Dogs are pretty wonderful, aren’t they?

        • SAP says:

          Wonderful, indeed!

          A friend who has Karelians says they’re as smart as border collies, they just don’t give a #%* if you know it!

  85. Jeff says:

    I’ve been away so maybe this has been posted—despite the hunting, Wyoming’s population has grown a little.

  86. Jerry Black says:

    10 Reasons Americans Ignore Climate Disasters
    10 Reasons Americans Ignore Climate Disasters

    By Paul B. Farrell,

    C’mon, admit it, we humans really are causing our own climate suicide. But so what?

    We’ve got freedom of choice. And we love our cars. They need gas. And we’re a bundle of mental contradictions. Is climate a “big issue?” Gallup polls say no. Only 24% of Americans think “climate change” is a big problem, near the bottom of 15 “national problems” polled. We’ll worry about that later.

    But aren’t environmentalists warning it may already be “too late.” So what? Blame Big Oil? No way, we love our wheels, big trucks, little Minis, Nascar, car pools, they’re our soul. A billion cars on the planet. Need them. Maybe hate Big Oil. But need gas pumps.

    Get it? Humans are unpredictably irrational. Besides, Big Oil’s nine million jobs generates over $1 trillion in annual revenue. Even trusted Vanguard owns over $15 billion of ExxonMobil (XOM) across 170 funds and 20 million shareholders. Stop those pipelines? No way, Congress gives Big Oil $4 billion a year in free tax loopholes.

    What’s their big secret? It’s human nature, programmed in our DNA, DNA, brains. You, me, all of us have a secret little “climate science denier” in our brains. Listen every time you fill up at the pump. Trips to work, kids’ ball games, energy stock dividends. We just tune out the climate risks. At least until later. And, nobody stops us from exercising our rights, secretly, openly.

    End of the human race? Why? ‘You can’t handle the truth!’

    We’re in denial, can’t hear the 2,000 concerned scientists in Yokohama this week focusing on their U.N. International Panel on Climate Change’s warnings there’s a “95% certainty” humans cause global warming … can’t even powerful leaders like ex-Mayor Michael Bloomberg and ex-Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson’s new “Risky Business” early-warning system on the costly impact in businesses … can’t even hear Bill McKibben and his massive army of environmentalists warning it “may already be too late.”

    Too late for what? In “Requiem for a Species: Why We Resist the Truth about Climate Change,” Clive Hamilton, an Australian Professor of Public Ethics, predicts the Earth will soon “enter a chaotic era lasting thousands of years. Whether human beings would still be a force on the planet, or even survive … one thing seems certain: there will be far fewer of us.” Still, today, 76% of Americans, about 235 million, say climate change global warming, the environment are not our nation’s top priority. Denial is in our DNA.

    What does worry Americans most? Topping Gallup’s list are today’s big pocketbook issues: The economy, deficits, unemployment, social security, jobs, federal power, health-care affordability. Climate later, much later.

    End of world is a disaster, but till then. We’ll have fun, get rich

    Don’t care? Tune out? Welcome to the human race. Basic psychology. Behavioral economics. Common sense. We’re like that lovably CEO of a Wall Street bank in one of my favorite Robert Mankoff New Yorker cartoons. He’s at the podium warning shareholders: “While the end-of-the-world scenario will be rife with unimaginable horrors, we believe that the pre-end period will be filled with unprecedented opportunities for profit.”

    Money in-or-out of our pockets today tops “saving the world.” That can wait. Gallup knows. Here are my 10 “big issues” distracting the American mind from the long-term problems, like climate change, global warming, the environment:

    1. Our public is apathetic — It’s me-first, global warming tomorrow

    Experts at Earth Policy Institute and Worldwatch Institute agree with Gallup, asking: “Peak Production From a Planet in Distress: Can We Keep It Up?” No. Our economy is “programmed to squeeze ever more resources from a planet in distress. A mixture of population growth, consumerism, greed, and short-term thinking by policymakers and business people seems to be inexorably driving human civilization toward a showdown with the planet’s limits.” But later will be too late. No time to prepare.

    2. Our workers’ big fear — the ‘American Dream’ is now a nightmare

    Our brains are split: We want tomorrow’s GDP to be like yesterday’s, full of promise, hope, prosperity, the good ol’ “American Dream.”

    Since 1776, we’re believed in Adam Smith vision of a “Land of Prosperity.” Powered by the Industrial Revolution. And our brains tell us, “Yes we can get back to those glory days!” With 3%-plus GDP rates. But now we’re struggling. Economist Robert J. Gordon’s warns “Is U.S. Economic Growth Over?” As inequality accelerates, the rich get richer, many question capitalism. Gordon sees America’s GDP dropping below 1% by 2100.

    3. Our out-of-control population — too many babies and old folks

    Scientific American says global population growth is “the most overlooked and essential strategy for achieving long-term balance with the environment.” Yet, by 2050 world population will explode from 7 billion to 10 billion. China’s economy will be three times America’s. Five years ago Bill Gates’s “Billionaires Club” met: Buffett, Soros, Rockefeller, Oprah, Bloomberg and others. What’s the world’s biggest time bomb? Overpopulation, said billionaires. Jeremy Grantham says we can’t feed 10 billion. Gates now says 8.3 billion people is the limit. Jeffery Sachs, head of Columbia’s Earth Institute and adviser to UN Secretary General warns that five billion is too many.

    4. Our religious taboos blind us to considering population limits

    In “The Last Taboo,” Mother Jones editor Julia Whitty hit the nail on the head: “What unites the Vatican, lefties, conservatives and scientists in a conspiracy of silence? Population.” Unfortunately, these hot-button issues ignite powerful reactions from fundamentalists. So politicians go deaf, won’t touch them. Nor will U.N.’s world leaders. By the time we wake up, it’ll be too late to act.

    5. We’re addicted to numbers — GDP is a divine ‘Invisible Hand’

    Anthropologist Jared Diamond says public health advances have “increased life spans in the Third World. But life span is not a sufficient indicator … about 80% of the world’s population” still survive on a few dollars a day. Nobel economist Joseph Stiglitz, author of “The Price of Inequality: How Today’s Divided Society Endangers Our Future”: “There’s less equality of opportunity in the U.S today than in almost any advanced industrial country.” Since 2008, the top 1% has captured 93% of all income growth. We need to recapture the real spirit of Adam Smith’s “Theory on Moral Sentiments”, add it back into America’s economic equation and database.

    6. We believe economists — their bizarre ‘myth of perpetual growth’

    Our civilization is at a crossroads, facing an ultimate no-win scenario. And yet, the “myth of perpetual growth” is blindly accepted to support GDP assumptions, economic expansion, the population explosion. It’s also wasting the planet’s non-renewable natural resources, will eventually destroy Earth. We’re damned if we grow. Damned if we don’t. Traditional economists work for organizations with short-term views. All our brains are convinced: If we can’t grow this quarter, long-term is irrelevant. The opposite’s true. Our mind’s mythology has trapped us in a suicidal run.

    7. We think Big Oil has a public conscience — we’re in massive denial

    The world has “1.4 trillion barrels of oil, enough to last at least 200 years,” says Chamber of Commerce CEO Tom Donohue, quoting Big Oil stats … “2.7 quadrillion cubic feet of natural gas, enough to last 120 years … 486 billion tons of coal, enough to last more than 450 years.” Yes, 200 years of oil. Too bad it’ll kill us in 50 years says environmentalist Bill McKibben in Rolling Stone. How? We may have “five times as much oil and coal and gas on the books as climate scientists think is safe to burn.” Suicide in 50 years.

    8. We forget too much — how climate-science deniers get rich

    Even ExxonMobil’s $40 million-a-year CEO Rex Tillerson admits climate change is real. But just an “engineering problem and there will be an engineering solution.” We’ll “adapt to a sea-level rise,” humans “spent our entire existence adapting.” Even with the U.N.’s 2,000 climate scientists 95% certainty that climate change could wipe civilization off the planet, like the dinosaurs, we forget why Big Oil is the world’s biggest climate science denier, and gets $4 billion annually in tax subsidies, fights all regulations, invests over $35 billion annually in exploration, spends millions buying votes of politicians.

    9. We ignore facts — like the planet can’t feed 10 billion people

    Jeremy Grantham, whose GMO firm manages $100 billion, looks ahead to 2050, warns of an “inevitable mismatch between finite resources and exponential population growth” with a “bubble-like explosion of prices for raw materials,” and commodity shortages that are becoming a huge “threat to the long-term viability of our species when we reach a population level of 10 billion.” Bottom line, it’s “impossible to feed the 10 billion people.”

    10. We have too much faith in technology — can’t solve future problems

    Our “faith in the future is based on an unsubstantiated track record that technology has lead us out of past problems and will solve today’s problems without creating new ones,” says Jared Diamond. But “actual experience is the opposite.” In Gordon’s provocative paper predicting decline of growth we learn that not only will America’s GDP dropping under 1% by 2100, Gordon also says that new innovations, technologies will never match the rate of GDP since the Industrial Revolution, Silicon Valley’s optimism won’t reverse the decline.

    • Nancy says:

      Thanks Jerry. I’ll pass these thoughts on although Crapshoot comes to mind since our species can’t seem to get beyond the “here and now”

  87. Ida Lupine says:

    We believe economists — their bizarre ‘myth of perpetual growth’.

    We have too much faith in technology — can’t solve future problems.

    These are two of the standouts of the accurate list, at least to me. Also, continuing down the fracking road, a process that uses too much precious water and also pollutes precious water that we (and, we forget or choose to ignore, the other inhabitants of this planet too).

    I think we would choose oil and gas over food, like those lab rats we’ve read about that become addicted to cocaine and choose it over food.

    • Yvette says:

      Ida, check out this “Our Wild World” interview with Dr. Samuel Wasser on his work with DNA of elephant dung.

      Maybe it’s a game changer?

    • Jeff says:

      Does this mean the end of elephant protection in those countries? Common sense says this is good, but without incentive to protect elephants the local will have little reason to tolerate them.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        The Service will reevaluate this suspension for calendar year 2015 or upon receipt of new information that demonstrates an improved situation for elephants in these countries.

        I didn’t interpret it that way. It sounds like there isn’t enough protection, and when the situation improves, it will be re-evaluated. I’m sure countries are quite capable without rich, patronizing American and European hunters to ‘manage’ things for them. As far as incentive, tourisim and wildlife watching is gaining ground.

  88. Louise Kane says:

    City of Los Angeles bans traps, body gripping devices and snares calling them inhumane! All right


February 2014


‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey