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 — February 15, 2014.

Weir Creek in The Lolo. North Central Idaho, where Idaho Fish and Game had a Wildlife Services helicopter gunship slaughter wolves and who knows what else in an attempt to jump start the  rebuilding of the elk herd. Copyright Ralph Maughan. Note the dense forest.

Weir Creek in The Lolo. North Central Idaho, where Idaho Fish and Game had a Wildlife Services helicopter gunship slaughter wolves and who knows what else in an attempt to jump start the rebuilding of the elk herd. Copyright Ralph Maughan. Note the dense forest.  Note that  this photo was taken in the Weir Creek/Post Office roadless area of  The Lolo. 

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.

505 Responses to Do you have some interesting wildlife related news? March 3, 2014 edition

  1. Larry Zuckerman says:

    so … what happens when an exposed or infectious elk wanders into a new conservation herd of bison formed outside of Yellowstone with wild-born, pure bison calves that have been quarantined, tagged, and tested for 3 years by APHIS? The survivors of this captive treatment of wild animals may bear some comparison to steelhead raised in a fish hatchery before release. Are they still wild? How will the calves learn normal herding and other behaviors typical of Yellowstone’s wild bison?

    just wondering.


    read the letters, also – very interesting, seems like the messages about welfare ranching, subsidized public grazing, and not treating the Nation’s pure and free bison as wildlife have reached some of the general public.

  2. LM says:

    Here’s a link from EENEWS “Greenwire”. It’s a bit of wildlife news from down under. It’s very graphic & hard to digest. Hah hah !


  3. Wolfy says:

    “Wandering wolf OR-7 may have a pal in Cascades”


    Quote from article:”Rod Childers, a Wallowa County rancher and negotiator for the Oregon Cattlemen’s Association on wolf issues, said he had not carefully reviewed the report, but the growing number of wolves is no surprise, given the restrictions on killing wolves that attack livestock. “All I can say for the cattlemen is I told you so,” he said.”

  4. Nancy says:

    Ralph, Ken, Brian – congratulations! You hit 3,000 “likes” on WN Facebook. 🙂

  5. Barb Rupers says:

    Received from my daughter this morning: “Last weekend there was a radio-collared female wolf killed about 3 miles from us, i.e. up Lawyer’s (Hwy 162 like you were going to Grangeville). She had been collared in Oregon.”

    I don’t know whether it was an auto hit or other cause.

    To bad those Oregon wolves wander into Idaho.

    • bret says:

      Snake River pack may be getting into trouble.

      On February 28, 2014 a local resident observed a dead cow on the
      east side of the lower Imnaha River. This person contacted the stock owner who later that day examined the carcass. The adult cow carcass was estimated to have died 3-4 days previous, was mostly consumed, and wolf depredation was suspected.

      An adult cow and two calves were previously confirmed attacked by Snake River wolves approximately 15- 19 miles south of this site and November 21, November 4, and
      October 15, respectively.

  6. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Endangered Jaguars Gain 1,194 Square Miles of Critical Habitat in Southwest

    • Chris Harbin says:

      That is good news. I saw on the same page that a rancher had most or all of his cattle taken away because they were in such bad condition. Two were euthanised on the spot and apparently there are several still loose that could not be herded back. I do not mean to lump every rancher together and I’m sure most do right by their animals. However, this puts a small hole in the theory that they are such good stewards. I also imagine that there are a lot more “loose” cattle out there and not just from this rancher.

      • Nancy says:

        Sadly Chris, a judge ordered the cattle to be returned to this abusive rancher. Saw articles about it on both online news stations this morning but now I can’t find them.

    • Barb Rupers says:

      The 400,000 acres being protected from nonrenewable energy resources extraction are managed by the US Forest Service.

      From The Daily Inter Lake:

      The North Fork Watershed Protection Act, sponsored by U.S. Rep. Steve Daines, R-Mont., passed the House Tuesday evening and Montana’s Democratic senators are urging their colleagues to do the same.

      The legislation essentially protects national forest lands from oil, gas and mineral extraction, but allows continued forest management, in the North Fork Flathead drainage. It is similar and reciprocal to action taken by the British Columbia provincial government in the Canadian North Fork.

  7. Ida Lupines says:

    Wow! 🙂

  8. Louise Kane says:


    12 year old girl kills cougar legally
    National legislation is needed to prevent ruthless killing of predators and the state agencies that continue to call this management.
    This is so very disturbing
    A young mind being indoctrinated into killing for fun

    • Barb Rupers says:

      There have been a couple other references to this event recently, 11 year old girl killing a cougar: Ken Fischman, Ph.D. in the post about Conservationists, one in a link to a Missoula News source, and now this one.

      This event occurred near Twisp, Washington and involves the same family from which three were found guilty in 2012 of several game violations. Most serious was killing endangered wolves and trying to ship them to Canada.

      The father’s and grandfather’s sentence included fines, home confinement for 6 months, and no hunting for 5 years. The grandfather, who imported poached big game animals into the US from Canada was not supposed to be around guns in the future.

      “The youngest White child also tracked and tagged a cougar on the property. Nine-year-old Cody White and his father spotted paw prints near the White house on Feb. 13 and followed them to the family’s calving pasture. He discovered a 120-pound male cougar and shot it on the hillside. http://www.outdoorlife.com/blogs/newshound/2014/02/girl-shoots-mountain-lion-stalked-her-brother

      This farm seems to be a pit for predators.

    • wolf moderate says:

      A study in the Bitterroots stated that cougar and bear were the reason for low Calf elk numbers. So what I’m hearing from some of you is game departments shouldn’t manage wolves because they aren’t the reason for calf elk degradation, but they also can’t/shouldn’t manage cougar and bear numbers?

      You can’t have your way all the time. Would you like bounties on wolves, hounding and baiting for bear and cougar, or longer hunting seasons for predators? Pick your poison because one or more of the three are going to be management tools for the foreseeable future.

  9. Louise Kane says:

    Snowy Owls have come to Cape Cod
    I saw my first on Sunday
    pretty cool
    There were 3 on the beach in West Dennis when we visited although we only spotted one.

    we are hoping to see more on the barrier beach called Nauset


    • Ida Lupines says:

      I’ve been looking and haven’t seen any yet – I’ll have to look further along the Cape! 🙂

    • Chris Harbin says:

      They have been seen in Louisville, KY this winter. One was practically starving when one of the local wildlife rehabs got him. try as they might he was to far gone and died. The others that have been here are having similar problems with obtaining food. Apparently their diet is somewhat restricted and the prey they are looking for do not live here.

    • Barb Rupers says:

      My aunt came from Philadelphia to our place in Maine one winter and announced that we were going to go to Plum Island, MA to see a snowy owl. I told her “they are not just sitting around waiting for you to see them”. So we went and, after driving about for an hour or so, there on the ground, next to the road was a snowy owl. It was the only bird we saw in the refuge that day except gulls at the beach eating the many clams that had been washed up by the strong wind.

    • Ida Lupines says:


      I saw one, finally, today! What a magnificently beautiful bird – topaz eyes. He or she was at the very top of a watchtower at the far end of the island I was hiking at, turning his or her head around and scanning the way that owls do. Beautiful!

  10. Louise Kane says:

    poaching and increase in hunting make Albania “death trap” for birds and mammals, two year ban enacted!

  11. Immer Treue says:

    Fairly interesting interview, question and answer session on MN NPR about What’s Killing the Minnesota Moose.


  12. Ralph Maughan says:

    Here is a great comment I read today (great except for the capitalized letters, that is), posted by an “anonymous” at a fine and fairly new Montana blog. http://womwe.blogspot.com/

    “I speak with millions of visitors from all over the world as part of my job here in Montana. I have NEVER had anyone of them ask where they can go to see CATTLE! These people are amazed at the wildlife in Montana and they spend millions of dollars to, if even for a short time, come here to enjoy what we are blessed to live with. Buffalo are wildlife not livestock. DOL…go manage your CATTLE and stay away from our wildlife and off our private property! Wildlife mgrs., STAND UP AND FIGHT!”

    • CodyCoyote says:

      I wonder why nobody with a little hutzpah and some legal clout has never challenged the Constitutionality of ” Fence Out” ?

  13. Kathleen says:

    Tom Tidwell, US Forest Svc. chief, appeared in Missoula last night as part of UM’s wilderness lecture series. News write-up is here

    During the Q&A, no fewer than three people asked or commented about IDF&G’s hired wolf killer in the Frank Church W. and its terrible assault on wilderness character. After he gave the first questioner a rather unsatisfactory answer, ending with the idea that we need to find solutions for these challenges going forward, the next commenter (a federal wilderness professional) quoted chapter and verse from the Wilderness Act, called the action a “grievous wound” to the Nat’l Wilderness Preservation System that trammeled wilderness, and said the solution already exists: “Follow the law.” This elicited applause from the audience. The third commenter, from Wilderness Watch http://www.wildernesswatch.org/ made the same case.

    • Ida Lupines says:


    • WM says:

      ++(a federal wilderness professional)quoted chapter and verse… ….”Follow the law”++

      Did this “wilderness professional” happen to quote chapter and verse from the Wilderness Act at Section 4(d)?. It states as follows:

      ++(8) Nothing in this Act shall be construed as affecting the jurisdiction or responsibilities of the several States with respect to wildlife and fish in the national forests.++

      Additional “chapter and verse” includes the two federal statutes creating and renaming the Frank,importantly restating the above provision nearly word for word. Equally important is a history of decades of ID state wildlife management on national forest land, setting seasons and harvest quotas for various game species and other wildlife management, prior to what has now become designated Wilderness?

      This very issue of “follow the law” is in litigation pending before federal Judge Lodge. And, plaintiff environmental groups, after losing on one point of law as against what the defendant USFS did or did not do allowing the IDFG contract trapper/hunter into the Frank to kill wolves, is now on appeal to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

      So, who really knows what the law is on this matter of federal statutory interpretation? [pregnant pause…..then, applause or booo’s?]

      It may be the final outcome of “follow the law” is NOT as clear as Wilderness Watch or other folks might suggest.

      • JB says:

        Good points, WM. Also relevant is the fact that the SCOPUS has called the doctrine of state ownership of wildlife a “19th-century legal fiction” (in Hughes v. Oklahoma) , and ruled that the federal government’s power of federal lands is “without limitations” (Kleppe v. New Mexico).

  14. Louise Kane says:


    70,000 plus signatures on DeFazio’s petition to keep wolves listed…..I’ve wondered what the tally would be of citizen input on the many petitions I’ve seen over the years that seek to protect wolves. Interesting study of public opinion

  15. CodyCoyote says:

    Moose population drop tied to habitat and nutrition conditions , not wolves or other predators, says new University of Wyoming research. Researchers studied key areas in western Wyoming, and one area in northern Colorado.


    COmment: What are the activist outfitters and outspoken trophy hunters going to use for an excuse now that wolves have been shoved further down the list of Moose mortality alongside cougars and bears ?

  16. Nancy says:

    I have a feeling the video with this article is not from this year. Just have to look at the webcam (links provided by WN) of Brooks Lake lodge to see there’s a ton of snow still around Yellowstone.


  17. Mike says:

    Scientists: The North American Wildlife Conservation Model is flawed.


  18. jon says:


    Cute otter video. Everyone should watch it.

  19. Louise Kane says:

    This year, question number 48 of the DNR/Wisconsin Conservation Congress agenda is:

    “Do you support legislation that would allow the owner of a hunting dog the ability to retrieve their hunting dog without landowner’s permission?”

    I can’t imagine this could pass and or withstand a challenge.

    • JB says:

      What if it were a dog owned by a non-hunter? And what if the landowner was away? Would you wait around to ask permission before entering someone’s property to retrieve your dog if it got off it’s lead?

      Imagine this scenario: You’re walking your dog down a country road and you pass a farm with a dog tied up outside. The dog is barking (of course) and your dog slips his lead and runs over to the other dog (now you have a potential dog fight on your hands). Would you: (a) Run to the door to ask for permission to retrieve your dog, or (b) run after the dog and attempt to prevent a fight?

      Yeah, I know, it would never happen to you because your dog is so well trained. But some aren’t so lucky. I’ll say that as a landowner, I would rather someone retrieve their dog from my property if I wasn’t around than sit around and wait for my return. Private property rights in this country have gone crazy.

      • Louise Kane says:

        JB why should I have to allow hunters on my property if I want it to remain a safe haven? If I strongly object to hound hunting?

        to counter with your imagine this scenario… Imagine this scenario
        The hunter’s dogs are out of control in pursuit and enter my property perhaps doing damage to the wild animals I want to protect or to my own dog. Instead of creating a law that dictates that I allow a hunter on my property to retrieve his dog, how about creating a law to ensure that hunting dogs are under control of their owner at all times or its at the hunter’s or dog’s peril. or better yet how about making laws to prevent hounding

        or the scenario where the hunter uses the dog as an excuse to cross over my property to chase an animal that is already under pursuit. The hunter can legally go onto my property and cross over to finish the pursuit. Who will be able to discern the difference?

        There are many scenarios that are offensive to me as a property owner. I think creating a law like this adds another loop hole for irresponsible hunting dog owners who already get enough privileges on public lands. They don’t need more leeway to use private lands as well.

        “private property rights in this country have gone crazy”

        I don’t want hounds trained to corner, chase or kill wildlife on my property and I don’t want laws that provide an essay excuse to be even more lax or invasive about their use in hunting.

        people have the right to protect themselves and their property from dogs trained to hound. The more apt statement might be hounding, trapping and killing have gone crazy.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          You wouldn’t want thieves or other law-breakers using that excuse either.

        • Louise Kane says:

          or this scenario
          a neighbor owns hunting dogs and the dogs are let loose regularly

          I object but nothing happens and the dogs are in my property constantly

          the owner can come over anytime retrieve his dogs and have no incentive to get them under control

          some problems with that law aside from imposing an activity I don;t agree with

          how many dogs can he retrieve
          how many incidents before I get to complain?
          what if my property is surrounded by hunting land and I don’t want dogs to harass me or my wildlife? that law leaves lift;e incentive for a dog owner to make hhis dogs behave as he always has a reason to relieve them legally regardless of my feelings or welfare.

          • topher says:

            The majority of hunting dogs are bird dogs. Mine is professionally trained. The only dogs I’ve seen harass wildlife are pets with owners who refuse to leash their dogs. If you can’t train it leash it.

            • Louise Kane says:

              Topher I’ve posted the websites of a couple of responsible trapper/ hounders. Note in the first the dog (s) with the trapped coyotes. in The second the serial trapper killer throwing a live coyote to his pack of dogs, he notes this is his idea of training. remember the state wanting to enact this law is Wisconsin, the state where hounding is allowed for wolf hunting. I would not want these bastards on my land or their dogs. http://www.huntingpa.com/forums/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=1981149&page=1

              • Louise Kane says:

                Here is the website of the creep and his packs of dogs that are harassing, attacking and mauling live animals. https://www.facebook.com/duane.freilino/photos This is the site where you can see him throwing a live coyote into a pack of dogs. I find it hard to believe that domesticated pet dogs are doing more damage than hunting dogs that belong to people like this. These are not isolated incidents.

            • Louise Kane says:

              Topher you wrote, “and if you can’t train it leash it” Exactly this is my feeling about hounding dogs. There should be no need to have to retrieve them off another’s private property if they are trained properly. I may stand corrected, but leash laws apply for for pets and these pets must be under an owner;s control so why should hunting dogs get special treatment and consideration and be able to harass wildlife and come onto private property to do so.

              • topher says:

                My guess is that a working dog should be trained better than a pet, even though this isn’t always the case.

              • JB says:

                “There should be no need to have to retrieve them off another’s private property if they are trained properly”

                Yep. And it is totally realistic to assume that every dog is trainable, and every owner is capable of ensuring their dog is trained. You’ve owned GSDs for too long Louise. 🙂

              • Louise Kane says:


                Nancy here is another story related to that. There are some really ignorant and selfish comments. I strongly defend local rights to use the public beaches, as a dog owner but not at the expense of an endangered species or when damage can occur to nesting sites. Its amazing how people react to common sense restrictions to protect wildlife. They do not want to yield/curb/alter one bit of their activities. We loose almost all our rights to use town beaches for overly lengthy periods because the town hears the occasional complaint from tourists and they react with full closures. There are little or no concessions, no part time use for dog owners,… nothing and these ordinances made notwithstanding 2/3 of the town owns dogs! I do object to that. But in some places we have piping plovers and sensitive habitats that are not good spaces to allow dogs. period its a shame the people in Bangor don;t recognize their responsibilities to protect these birds.

          • WM says:


            Try a little turbo fladry and tell us how it works.

          • WM says:


            You might heed my sarcastic comment about the fladry. You just made an argument analogous to livestock owners which have unwanted wolves visit their unfenced property. So, applying the rules if you don’t want somebody’s hunting dog visiting YOUR LAND, you better fence them out, or be out there regularly so you can shoo them off to ensure they do no damage.

            Here are the really rich parts of your righteous comments, “There are many scenarios that are offensive to me as a property owner,”….”how many incidents before I get to complain.”

            Kind of funny how that works, eh?

            • Louise Kane says:

              WM likening farmers and ranchers that want to kill wolves and other predators near their land is not the same argument as a property owner wishing to exclude trained domesticated animals from their property.
              its not the same argument at all and you know it.
              Wolves are not domesticated animals. Hounding involves dogs or packs of dogs that are trained to be over stimulated and to track down wild animals. Why should I have to put up anything to keep over excited domesticated animals off my property . I’m not talking about killing, harassing or harming these dogs, I simply don’t believe laws that provide disincentives and loopholes for hounders to use my property as just or reasonable.

              • WM says:


                It is the same argument in many respects. You just don’t see it.

                I am referring to the facts, Louise, – unwanted canids on private property. The two scenarios are IDENTICAL in that respect. You have a sense about proprietary use of your property and have made that crystal clear. A rancher/farmer/any land owner might have the same feelings, especially if they want to protect their interest on their property (and their animals on it). You or they may not want intruding animals there, and you want them gone. That is the operative part of the analogy. Again, it is identical

                Of course, if the canids come on your property and do something you don’t want them to do, there is a similarity there too. Strident wolf advocates (yourself included) say, well you should have been there more frequently to keep the canids from doing what you didn’t want (fence them out). You should have prevented them from coming on your property. Also, IDENTICAL.

                Where it breaks down is what the reaction is to the presence and the damage. If some hunting dog comes on your property and eats your chickens or pees on your expensive lawn furniture, kills a pet of yours, gets in a fight with your well trained GSD, it’s still the same (you might like to dispatch some irresponsible owner’s loose dog, but your reaction may be similar to some rancher or hobbyist who loses a horse to wolves. The only differences I see are that the wolves are feral and presumably nobody is responsible for their behavior except the government, which may come to aid after the fact, or you may have a right to kill the wolves by a grant of right in a statute. You may have such a right with somebody’s hunting dog, if it is doing something dangerous. I do wonder what your reaction would be if, say 3 hunting dogs (let’s call them bird hunting dogs) come on your property and tear into your elderly German Shepard, mortally injuring it. What then, Louise, you aren’t going to be angry, or maybe want to dispatch the attacking dogs before they kill yours?

              • Louise Kane says:

                OK let me say it again,
                wolves are wild animals….hunting dogs are domesticated invasive species, if you will.

                My original post was specific to my feelings that creating a law that provides a disincentive for hounders to control their dogs creates a dangerous loophole and impedes on my rights as a property owner. Hunting dogs are not wildlife they are not endangered and they are invasive. Hunters already receive enough privileges, there are few if any refuges from hunting and if private property owners want to exclude hounding on their property they should have a right to. The burden of training the dog for instant recall and for obedience should be on the hunter…not the property owner.

                As for your question “I do wonder what your reaction would be if, say 3 hunting dogs (let’s call them bird hunting dogs) come on your property and tear into your elderly German Shepard, mortally injuring it. What then, Louise, you aren’t going to be angry, or maybe want to dispatch the attacking dogs before they kill yours”

                All I can say is that I have my dog with me almost all the time. I never let him out by himself. That’s the first step in protecting him. I take very good care of him, he is my friend and I’d never send him out alone. Unlike hounders, I would never risk having him hurt by teaching him to track other canids and I’d never allow him to hurt others. I’d fight like hell if it were my state and a law like this was pending. I see it as an excuse to expand hounder’s rights.

              • JB says:


                I think you are confused about what the law permits. There is a difference between having the right to retrieve a dog from private property and the right to hunt on that property. Most states require express permission of a landowner before someone can hunt (including discharging a firearm). Some states also require express landowner permission to search private property for game they have shot elsewhere that is believed to have died on said property (though others already allow hunters to enter private property to pursue injured game). Allowing a hunter (or non-hunter) to retrieve dogs from private property is a common sense law, from my perspective. It allows the dog owner to protect both their property (the dog) and the property where the dog is trespassing.

                If you want absolute property rights, you might consider moving from Massachusetts to Montana. Then you can just shoot the dog and the owner that comes looking for him. Maybe you can move in with Elk or SaveBears?

              • rork says:

                What’s the punishment for people letting their dogs on my property?
                Trouble is that it’s so weak.
                I have a solution: permit no hound hunting. Then it could only happen to bird dogs, which won’t happen, or it could happen to pet dogs, which is impossible cause they are leashed, and if it does let the punishment be rather severe. Maybe we’d could permit bunny hunting with dogs and not have too much trouble.
                I most certainly would never trespass on another’s land to recover game without their permission (or with DNR). We have folks poaching private property – I want their mere presence to be illegal, no excuses. I’m solidly with Kane.

            • JB says:

              Ironically, I just stumbled across a program about escape-artist dogs. These animals figured out how to get out despite, in some cases, their owners spending thousands. Lock up those irresponsible pet owners!!!

      • Louise Kane says:

        JB I am not confused at all about what the law is trying to do, not one bit.

        • Louise Kane says:

          and you completely ignored the concerns I expressed about this proposed law and the reasoning behind it.

  20. Mike says:

    A young dog was rescued today in eastern Montana. The dog had been running scared for six days with a trap on its leg.

    It was rescued and treated by a Ft. Belknap Animal Control Officer and Bear Paw Vet service.

    Trap Free Montana Public Lands just broke the story.

    Happy ending.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      This is why the concept of humans ‘managing’ wildlife is a bad idea, and does not give the complete picture. There are always events that we are not aware of that could have a devastating effect if we keep an animal’s population to a low, politically or scientifically arrived at number.

      I always picture science as a creature chasing the answers, not always successful or only getting some of the information, and continually learning more. Or as hard as it is to believe, arriving at the wrong answers.

      • Mark L says:

        Correct. Imagine having kept bat numbers at a low ‘safe’ number and then seeing 90% or more wiped out by White Nose Syndrome (WNS), as has happened. Or, choose chytrid (Bd) in amphibians.
        Millions of bats/frogs leaves us with a sizeable population base of survivors…what about 150 bats/frogs?

        Not so much.

      • rork says:

        Wrong. We always act under some uncertainty. Truth is never fully available. Maximizing subjective expected utility gives no special status to the act of “do nothing” over other acts.
        Example: deer.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      You can see how it kind of resembles a body of water from a distance, esp. from above. 🙁

  21. Louise Kane says:

    Wolf Conservation Center Opposes Bipartisan Sportsmen’s Act, S.1996 – Wolf Conservation Center -…
    POPVOX – Wolf Conservation Center Opposes Bipartisan Sportsmen’s Act, S.1996 – Wolf Conservation Cen…

  22. Nancy says:

    “Hagy said investigators asked Richard why he killed the cougar and he said during the interview that it was an “opportunity” he would “never, ever have again.”


    • Louise Kane says:

      “Still, he added, “there’s no proof or evidence” of investigators’ accusations against him.”

      that and the dead cougar!

  23. Ida Lupines says:

    Sarcasm alert:

    My concern about this law is what about the hominids on private property with guns of the less virtuous sort than hunters only retrieving dogs, with a ‘thank you and a tip of the hat’.

    I can just hear it now – WM, help me out here – ‘my client was only trying to retrieve his hunting dogs, not trying to break into Mrs. Smith’s house and steal her medications and silverware!’ “)

  24. Immer Treue says:

    All the kings horses and all the kings men…

    Colt Killing Wolf(ves)not found,yet…?


    • WM says:

      At least, it appears, the event has been confirmed, and now reported in the mainstream media. One more entry in the statistics – where it will just be added to a tally. Question is, why now won’t they return calls from the media for comment on the incident?

      • Immer Treue says:

        To reaffirm, I am not disputing, and am saddened for their loss. Unless someone can prove otherwise, it sure appears C lupus was responsible. Question. Sounded as though they were tripping over wolves, and now nothing. Dispersing wolf, looking for a mate? Or did someone from the “posse” get the accused and keeping their mouth(s) shut?

        • Yvette says:

          I saw the pictures too, and it sure looked like it was a wolf attack for what very little I know of wolf attacks on other animals.

          There is something about all of this that isn’t quite adding up, though. Why would anyone with known wolf problems keep a young colt in a corral located a mile from the house and the guard dogs in a kennel? I really feel for that innocent little colt. I know if it had of been my colt, he would have been in the barn close to the house, wolves or no wolves.

          • Nancy says:

            “Why would anyone with known wolf problems keep a young colt in a corral located a mile from the house”

            Ahh but the story has changed a wee bit Yvette.

            According to the latest picture (and I certainly don’t recall seeing it in the original pics with the story) there’s now another view of the “colt killing site” and its just 98 yards from their house… not 1,760 yards (a mile away) as first claimed.


            And there’s something strange about the necropsy pictures (before & after) Barely a willow twig out of place around the body in both shots (as someone pointed out on the IdahoForWildlife Facebook page) and I still, even with the additional pic, don’t see where there are any willows around the “colt kill site”

            Again, nothing about this story adds up and probably why they don’t want to answer any questions from the media.

            This little stud colt was adorable and I do feel sorry about his demise but why was he, at 8 months old, still in a pasture with mares and his full brother, who was also a stud?

            Or was he?

            Can feel their attachment being that he was the last of his father’s line, other than of course Little Bit:


            the brother that attempted to defend him in his dying moments but hey, when does it start sounding just a bit like a soap opera?

            • Yvette says:

              I didn’t know the story had changed. One thing I did notice when I read their initial story was this colt’s sire, and one other horse were both killed. One by a rattlesnake bite and one from a fight with a bull elk. Did the Swigerts call the media, Wildlife Services, IDFG, and the National Guard to start an all out, full tactical assault on rattlesnakes and bull elks?

              Nope, that is reserved for the wolves.

    • Yvette says:

      All those professional wolf hunters and no big, bad wolf. My oh my, what can we make of this?

      Todd Grimm, state director of Idaho Wildlife Services, mounted an effort last week to find and shoot the wolves. Grimm said the search included three flightsby airplane to spot the wolves.
      “We had another flight this morning and saw nothing,” Grimm said Monday.

      Caddyshack, anyone?

  25. SEAK Mossback says:

    There are a number of interesting short articles this week in our regional free paper. More scary evidence of recent impacts of increasingly corrosive ocean water (from increasing C02 concentration) on shellfish — noticed in BC by aquaculture operators who are the frontline business people most likely to notice:
    One morning a few weeks ago, the local radio station said distant scientists had detected a 70 million metric ton landslide in Southeast Alaska but they couldn’t tell us exacting where. I looked around at the mountains and promptly forgot about it, but a pilot located it 5 days later:
    Finally, a “to-be-continued” mystery about the death of a wolf north of Fairbanks:
    And as a bonus, although a bit off-topic for this site, a handful of old wooden halibut schooners built up to a century ago are still chasing fish in our waters:

  26. Louise Kane says:


    Immer and others
    looks like a new proposed bill designed to help wolves. i wonder how much Maureen Hackett had to do with this, she is tireless. Looks like there are some good provisions…..

  27. Louise Kane says:


    oregon wolf formerly of inhama pack killed in idaho
    very sad

  28. Louise Kane says:

    scientists call for change in carnivore management globally

  29. Immer Treue says:

    More on Moose decline in MM. While we are on the subject of deer affect on forests, not only do they give brain worm to moose, but also liver flukes.


    • rork says:

      Thanks for pointer.
      Glad I finished dinner first, and don’t have to face deer liver til Oct.

  30. Jeri Edwards says:

    NY Times Op-Ed article, “Is the Wolf a Real American Hero?”
    Interesting article, interesting comments

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Yes, some outstanding comments! 🙂 Just when I think people are hopeless, people always prove me wrong.

  31. Elk375 says:

    Here is a editorial in the New York Times by Arthur Middleton about wolves, elk and Yellowstone Park.


    • Immer Treue says:

      Great post, the belongs with Mech’s “sanctifying the Wolf.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      It’s an opinion piece, and Dr. Mech’s name tossed around in it a few times to give it legitimacy. I don’t know how anyone can try to criticize trophic cascades. There is more junk science around nowadays, and it is hard to sift through the wheat and the chaff!

      • Ida Lupines says:

        Although I will say that nothing I’ve read is as horrendous as the study that found trees were contributing to increased C02 levels!

      • Immer Treue says:


        Prior to making such a comment, perhaps you should do a bit of research on Arthur Middleton. If it is an “opinion piece” Middleton certainly has the qualifications.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          He says trophic cascades is ‘untrue’. I don’t think anyone can state that for certain, regardless of impressive credentials.

          • Ida Lupines says:

            Immer, please refrain from telling me what I can and cannot say, or give me any research advice. It will fall on deaf ears, so please don’t waste your time.

            Still, the story persists. Which brings up the question: Does it actually matter if it’s not true?

            I think this is a very dangerous and irresponsible thing to imply.

            • Immer Treue says:


              Please read what I wrote. I made no assertion towards what you can or cannot write. I suggested that you (should)research Middleton prior to making such a comment. I’d also suggest you read the full Mech report is Science in Danger of Sanctifying The Wolf, if you have not already done so.

              Odd how Mech gets it from both sides, but I’d hazard a guess, with an animal like the wolf, when one speaks from the aspect of unbiased science, people will not necessarily be happy, especially the polar opposites.

              • Ida Lupines says:

                I have read Dr. Mech’s report, here. I think people have taken his meaning way out of context.

            • Ida Lupines says:

              Maybe twenty or so years isn’t enough time to see results after a century of abuse? Dr. Middleton freely states that there has been massive human alteration of the landscape, so the fix of returning the large carnivore might not ‘be allowed’ to be evident. Just because we haven’t seen major results yet, doesn’t mean the ‘story’ isn’t true. There are also studies that show there have been improvements to regrowth of aspen and willow, and the return of a diversity of wildlife.

              Maybe taking Wildlife Services and trapping out of the equation might make a difference.

              Accusations of ‘sanctifying’ the wolf again with regard to wolf supporters – it’s disappointing to read a science professional resorting to this kind of broad-brush, appeal-to-emotions tactic, especially for those who don’t follow the issue quite as closely as we do here.

              The energies of scientists and environmental groups would be better spent on pragmatic efforts that help people learn how to live with large carnivores.

              How’s that workin’ for us? Not very well. Hasn’t for two centuries, and we’ve had a backslide with a resurgence of the mindset from two centuries ago. At that rate, can we extrapolate that wolf acceptance won’t be in the foreseeable future?

              • Ralph Maughan says:

                Middleton wrote as you note above, Ida: “The energies of scientists and environmental groups would be better spent on pragmatic efforts that help people learn how to live with large carnivores.”

                Are scientists and environmental groups not doing that because of all the energy being spent on wolves? I don’t think so. Almost all the energy devoted to wolves today is to monitor their presence near livestock and then kill them at the least excuse. It is not scientists and environmental groups that are exhausting their energy doing that.

          • Immer Treue says:

            The entire Mech paper from Biological Conservation, not the abridged version from the IWC.


            If Middleton is guilty of anything, it is of parroting Mech.

    • JEFF E says:

      now that was a good read
      thanks for posting

    • jburnham says:

      I’m glad Mr. Middleton wrote this. I cringe a bit every time I see the tidy trophic cascade narrative repeated here and elsewhere as if it’s gospel.

      Readers to this site especially must know that this is far from settled science. There are alternate explanations and many confounding variables. It’s been discussed here many times.

      • Ida Lupines says:

        Besides, large carnivores clearly do cause trophic cascades in other places.

        Where he links to this study.


        But just not, in his opinion, in Yellowstone. Hmmm. Some would beg to differ.

        So, while it may be not be settled in some people’s estimation, it’s a pretty well-established and accepted (and nobody repeats it as if it were ‘gospel’), it’s hardly a ‘story’ either.

      • JB says:


        The part I find amusing and more than a tad ironic is that the most vocal opposition to trophic cascades comes from the wolf haters–who just can’t seem to believe wolves could possible have any benefits, despite the fact that the primary mechanism for said benefits is killing wild ungulates (what they continuously complain about). Meanwhile the wolf-lovers are very protective of trophic cascades, the the while denying that wolves have any impact on ungulates.

        Apparently the human and irony are lost on both groups.

        • Immer Treue says:


          Middleton and Mech are only suggesting that before making all the claims about wolves and trophic cascades, that all variables are tested. I remember the hypothesis/predictions of these cascades prior to wolves ability to have any effect. It makes sense, but it has only been 19 years.

        • JB says:

          I appreciate what Mech and Middleton are doing, though I think Middleton overstates his conclusion:

          “But there is a problem with the story: It’s not true.”

          Really? Such certainty. Mech’s paper is better, probably because it went through peer-review.

          In any case, the point I was trying to make is that the fight over trophic cascades has been humorous, if for no other reason than the lovers/haters don’t seem to grasp the implications for their arguments.

          • Yvette says:

            It was the absolutism peppered throughout his article that raised the red flag for me. He’s a researcher; he should know better.

        • jburnham says:

          I agree JB. We also hear demands over and over that wildlife management use the best available science. But throw a little uncertainty in there and the best available science suddenly morphs into “junk science” and “opinion”.

          People may love science and still have a poor understanding of it.

    • Mike says:

      The wolf already has the public behind it, in overwhelming numbers.

      What it doesn’t have is power over local agricultural industry and hunters.

      The only way for the wolf to survive in the Rockies is perpetual enforcement from the federal level. Same for the grizzly and wolverine.

      The little boys with their little toys have shown themselves far too immature to responsibly handle wolves.

  32. Louise Kane says:


    This is one of the most disturbing accounts I have ever read

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Wow. I’d say it is the most disturbing I have ever read. Shocking.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      He is completely ignoring the fallout in Idaho, and less so in the other wolf-hating states.

      • Ida Lupines says:

        And the fact that Democrats are responsible for it just boggles the mind.

  33. Mike says:



    Slob hunters arraigned on criminal charges for killing rare Michigan cougar, then eating its heart.

    “We asked him why he did it,” Hammill said, “and he said, quote, ‘Because it’s something I’d never, ever have again. I’d never have the opportunity to have something like that.’ We have him on audio saying that.”


    As for the story about eating the heart, Hagy said the men definitely “ate some of it.” Richard said the reason they cooked and planned to eat it was because “that’s what hunters do.

    This one is especially irritating. Here you have a beautiful animal minding its own business. Cougars are very rare in the hacked-over, chopped-up U.P. and Midwest. They need all the help they can get in re-establishing breeding populations (I believe they’ve been doing that since the 1950’s in a lesser extent), and along come these absolute goons who just blow this cougar away.

    Another chapter in the hunting tradition.

    • rork says:

      That is not the hunting tradition Mike, those slime are poachers, convicted ones. That story has been running a long time (and referenced here at least twice), with many hunters calling for heavier punishments. We haven’t had verified cougar kittens in MI in over 100 years, but maybe we will soon, and it’s true there may have been some we just don’t know about – it’s going to be so cool.

      • Mike says:

        The resilience of the hacked-over U.P. amazes me.

        Wolves, fisher, marten, and cougar.

        I had the honor of seeing a cougar in 1992 near Skanee.

        If you look at the sightings reports over the last 100 years, it seems obvious that there is a breeding population, although probably not a substantial one.

        This is why I was sickened to learn of the Salmon/Trout mine. That area is the heart of the U.P. in terms of wildlife.

  34. rork says:

    Washington fisheries managers showing signs of sanity about fish genetics. Please mama, don’t you faint.
    “Three tributaries of Columbia River designated wild steelhead gene banks”: East Fork Lewis, North Fork Toutle/Green, Wind River.

  35. savageslc says:

    The infamous U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services appears to be getting involved in the oil business. Here is the link to an article about their Ouray National Wildlife Refuge oil drill plans. Open to public comment. http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/news/57661336-78/amp-refuge-ouray-wildlife.html.csp

  36. Nancy says:

    Beautiful pics (and story behind it) as always from this site. Even around big cities you can find some great spots to “shoot” wildlife 🙂


    • Yvette says:

      Nancy, there is a great wordpress blog called ‘Coyote Yipps’ with lots of great pictures of urban coyotes. She has quite a bit of good information on the site, too. Check it out.

  37. wolf moderate says:

    Alaskan wolf found dead in trail confirmed killed by other wolves.


    • SEAK Mossback says:

      It’s the continuation of the story I listed last week above. Other aspects of the story are interesting — I remember hearing about the lice outbreak in wolves around Fairbanks a few years ago, but had no idea biologists managed to go out and eradicate it from the population. Wonder what it took to do that?

      I find it somewhat interesting that there is still ample evidence of territorial battles among wolves in close proximity to Fairbanks, suggesting that even very intensive trapping in all directions has not reduced them below habitat capability. There is a high local density of moose compared with the rest of the interior and it seems like where there is prey there will be wolves — at least in an area with such high connectivity with surrounding wolf habitat.

      Dr. Beckmen certainly manages to keep busy solving a vast array of wildife mysteries around the state while still doing basic research on diseases and parasites. I’ve contributed to her work load on a number of occasions from the deer population behind my house — including the first documented case of Echinococcus granulosus in SE Alaska wildlife, plus a huge wart on one my kills this past fall that she’s sent off to a Norwegian lab for genetic sequencing.

    • Mark L says:

      500 pound boar? Bet the meat smells somewhat like armpit. Glad his family is eating it and not mine…sows only for me, as far as eating.

  38. Leslie says:

    In regards to Middleton’s NYT article, this is an interesting article. The big buzzwords in ecology are ‘landscape of fear’ and I’ve never bought it. Landscapes are more complex, and wildlife is more complex than just living a fear based existence.


    • Leslie says:

      Maybe we should stop killing off our existing elephants before we start cloning extinct ones. I think these guys are working in the wrong direction. Climate change killed them off the first time. Now a second time?

      • Ida Lupines says:

        Yes. Why can’t we clone species that we know were made extinct directly from human activities, like the passenger pigeon and the thylacine and the Dusky Seaside Sparrow (went extinct in 1990)? Something more recent? What are the ethics in bringing back this cloned animal?

        • Ida Lupines says:

          The dusky’s demise began in 1940 when DDT was sprayed on the marshes for the control of mosquitoes. This pesticide entered the bird’s food chain which caused the population to go from 2,000 to 600 breeding pairs. When Merritt Island was flooded with the goal of reducing the mosquito population around Kennedy Space Center, the sparrows’ nesting grounds were devastated, and their numbers plummeted. Later, the marshes surrounding the river were drained, to facilitate highway construction; this was a further blow. Eventually, pollution and pesticides took such a high toll that by 1979, only six dusky seaside sparrows were known to exist — all of whom were males; a female was last sighted in 1975.

          – Wikipedia

          Will we ever learn? No.

    • Rita k Sharpe says:

      Jeff E, This subject was touched on some time ago on The Wildlife News and I will repeat what I said then, that some things should be left alone and just because we can,doesn’t mean we should.

      • JEFF E says:

        Rita K.I posted a link to a news story. did not offer an opinion one way or another

  39. Louise Kane says:


    JB, WM and others I think you will find this study/project interesting especially the part that examines and compares US and EU models of law and how they compare and are applied to large carnivore management.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      I love the title! 🙂

    • WM says:


      I am still trying to wrap my mind around a lot of what the EU does, including illegal protectionist subsidies of Airbus in light of clear and even prevailing challenges to their policies, international effects of their free trade agreements, challenges to proprietary computer operating systems and software, and this week’s novel and almost comedic efforts to “reclaim” generic words which for decades have been used for products like “Parmesan or Asiago cheeses,” to increase their market shares of products manufactured and sold in and outside the EU (Craft has been using the term for longer than I can remember, maybe 45-50 years). And it may not be just cheeses. Other products with traditional ties to European countries that could be affected include bologna, Black Forest ham, Greek yogurt, Valencia oranges and prosciutto, among other foods.


      I am no fan of the EU. It is kind of like herding cats. They can’t even seem to get their currency thing to work so well among themselves, and they sure as hell like to grind the US on so many things, but let us take the lead and spend the most money on policing the unstable parts of the world, while their member countries sit diplomatically idle and reap the benefits.

      All that being said, I’ll look over the link. I guess the Scandinavians are likely to take a somewhat objective look at how they handle wolves and make sense of EU wildlife laws in the long term (or so my mostly Norwegian wife encourages me).

      • Peter Kiermeir says:

        Unfortunately the Scandinavian (Sweden/Norway/Finland) policy on wolves strongly resembles the American West: A mess! Finland is the bottleneck for wolves wanting to migrate into Sweden/Norway. The Sami in Finland shoot every wolf that happens to have a look on their reindeer. Sweden is ruled by a strong hunting lobby and heavy poaching (you´ll find drowned wolves there, with chains wrapped around) and Norway ? Norway, that shares the wolf population with Sweden, is the same. By the way you have some interesting opinion about the EU, the typical view from America 🙂

        • Peter Kiermeir says:

          An excellent overview of news on Scandinavian wolf policy in English language:


        • WM says:


          ++…interesting opinion about the EU, the typical view from America.++

          The question is what of the views held in America are not true regarding EU over-the-top protectionism for consumer products, and incredible government subsidies for Airbus manufacturing (where they don’t have to pay back their zero interest government financing unless their products make a profit, unlike US aviation manufacturing which is privately financed and seen competitors fall or consolidate to remain in business)? It has only been through constant pressure and legal action that Airbus has even remotely begun to act like a for profit business rather than a heavily subsidized government jobs program. I wonder how the EU would react if Boeing attempted to locate a major manufacturing facility in say Germany (similar to what Airbus is doing in Alabama [and engineering center in Wichita, KS], and compete on an even playing field for military aircraft contracts even as we speak.

          It will be interesting to see what similarity/differences EU member countries have regarding legal protection of wolves. I gather Romanian sheepherders spend a lot on guard dogs.

          • Peter Kiermeir says:

            While I do not intend to elaborate on Boeing / Airbus market protectionism and dominance, I´d like to make a few general notes on wolf protection in Europe (nevertheless, I still think Airbus had the better product for your Airforce until the requirements have been altered to better suit the B767) ´:-)
            The Wolf is heavily protected by European law throughout the European Community. That’s why e.g. the Swedish Gouvernement regularily receives protest notes from the European Community about it´s flawed wolf management and wolf hunt. Herd protection with dogs is quite common in Europe (not only Eastern Europe where it was always done). And, if you properly protect your herds you qualify for subsidies and compensation for losses. Eastern Europe states are not yet fully in line with the whole EU Regulations because not everything has yet been adopted but it´s basically the same.

            • WM says:


              So refreshing to know you are not one dimensional, as some folks on this forum are. Of course,I knew that previously, from your numerous knowledgeable, thoughtful and even insightful comments here. Yeah the Air Force tanker competition was a fluke for so many reasons, including John McCain’s employment of a former Airbus exec as his Presidential campaign manager, and America’s deep South wanting to become a player in aviation manufacturing.

              So, Finland and Sweden are EU members, and if I understand, Norway is not because they felt it encroached on their agriculture and industry. Neither is Georgia, but has a good share wolves, and those Caucasian sheep dogs.

              Interesting documentary video on the Georgia guard dogs, with a couple notations that the Georgians hate the Russians who tried to requisition their dogs during the Cold War and before, and a recognition that if you have to use these dogs they might not be real friendly to humans (even in a car) which encroaches on the sheep herd and thus the dogs’ territory. The areas where this was filmed looked very much like some mountain grazing lands in the US (think BLM grazing allotments).

      • Mareks Vilkins says:

        US would position itself as some kind of free market embodiment? just give me a break

        America has an Industrial Policy – It’s Run by the Pentagon

      • Mareks Vilkins says:

        let us take the lead and spend the most money on policing the unstable parts of the world, while their member countries sit diplomatically idle and reap the benefits.


        what benefits were reaped by EU in Afghanistan or Iraq etc??

        or in those countries:


        • Mareks Vilkins says:

          The Greatest Threat to World Peace

          The United States polls higher than Pakistan, Iran and China as a perceived menace to peace.


          • WM says:

            So Mareks, what do you think about Latvia becoming the next target of Russia after it annexes part of the Ukraine? You and the other Balkan states want to be under Russian rule once again. Your EU buddy countries might just sit on the sidelines while all this happens – you know dual Russian citizenship is already an option for some Russian ethnics living in your country, yes?


            I am guessing the Russian Bear’s view of free roaming wolves is probably a little different than some conservation groups would like. Just thinking out loud here. 😉

            • Mareks Vilkins says:


              Latvia is one of the Baltics republics (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania), not Balkan republics(Serbia, Bosnia, Croatia etc.).

              That fear-mongering about Russia’s threat is a favorite decoy for so-called nationalists. Kremlin’s foreign policy isn’t about efforts to annex EU/NATO member states (especially so small countries as the Baltic republics). Kremlin is interested about gas/oil in Caspian region and US military bases encircling Russia and it’s gas/oil pipeline routes. If similar processes would happen next to US borders – US would respond more aggressively than Russia.

              Speaking about free roaming wolves – actually thanks to Russian region next to Latvia’s border we still have ‘sustainable wolf policy’ here in Latvia.

              Because wolf hunting intensity for 15 consecutive years is above 43% and I suspect that only thanks to incoming wolves from neighboring countries (Estonia, Lithuania, Russia’s Pskov region)we still have some 200-300 wolves after hunting season (current wolf quota is 300 wolves and hunters have killed at least 260).

              In Estonia, Lithuania, Pskov region in Russia wolves are not under intensive hunting pressure but Latvia has more ungulates thanks to prevailing elk,deer,wild boar etc. farming policy + intensive logging provides a lot of forage for ungulates and winters are mild ( only 2 winters were harsh during last 15 years).

              Total length of Latvia’s shared border with EE, LT, RU is 1200 km / 750 mi so if one remembers that to secure 200-300 wolves (after 300 wolf harvest) LV needs some 60-95 breeding pairs then with assumed average dispersal distance ~ 100km/60 mi it follows that Latvia can collect wolves from 60 000 – 120 000 sq.km (or 23 500 – 47 000 sq.mi) donor territory.

              I mean, hunters in Latvia are killing not only ‘local’ wolves but also those incoming from EE,LT,RU.

              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                50km x 1200 km = 60K sq.km
                100km x 1200 km = 120K sq.km

              • WM says:


                Yes, Baltic, my error.

                So, if I understand your post correctly, in the region you are describing, there is a sustained annual wolf harvest of 260+/- wolves against a base population of around 500-600 (resulting in a lower density void which is then is partly refilled by in-migration, as well as net reproduction)?

              • Mareks Vilkins says:


                Latvia :
                Area ~ 64 000 sq.km
                Forests ~ 50% of territory

                The number of wolves allowed to kill in 2013 / 2014 hunting season – 300 (biologists estimate wolf population at 200-300 (and that number is considered to be optimal size for wolf population in LV) at the end of hunting season on 31st March and 500-600 wolves with pups in July, that is after pup mortality which is highest in the first 3 months).

                The number of lynxes allowed to kill in 2012 / 2013 hunting season – 150 ( biologists estimate lynx population at 300-400 lynxes at the end of hunting season and 600-700 lynxes with kittens in July).

                Right now 70% of adult wolf females are breeding every year (6 pups per litter) – so the policy basically comes to this:

                1) make local wolves to become breeding machines and then

                2) kill every single wolf within 5…6 years time (as an ex-director of Hunting department explained to me – ” demand for wolf and lynx hunt is bigger than a risk to damage predator population’s structure”).

                During 1999-2007 the average hunting quota was 130 wolves (43% of population) and NOT more than 300 wolves were present when hunting season started in July.

                But during 2008-2012 the average hunting quota was 180 wolves and 200-300 wolves left when hunting season is ending.In the last few years quota is 250-300 wolves.

                Good news is that soon will be known results from a study about wolf genes so we’ll see if here’s substantial amount of incoming wolves from Estonia, Lithuania and Russia’s Pskov region.

                And interesting connection to Northern Rocky Mountains wolf management plans is that ex-director of Latvia’s Hunting department Janis Ozolins (who’s in charge of wolf/lynx gene study) intended to publish scientific paper which would show that wolf and lynx populations in Latvia can endure bigger hunting pressure than usually is referenced in literature (for wolves above 40% and for lynxes above 10%). I mean, J.Ozolins intended to show that for a whole generation under very intense hunting pressure the local wolf population is stable and even slowly increasing – and that sounds like a music to ranchers, politicians and wolf-haters who can fiercely demand wolf harvest bag’s increase.

                However, it is unknown to what extent this picture is distorted due to incoming wolves from neighboring countries like Russia,Estonia and Lithuania (70 out of 201 wolves were killed in border area in 2011-2012 season).

                You can take a lok at LV wolf management plan “Wolf conservation plan” , especially pages 12-23 (management policy is referenced to Dr Dave Mech) http://www.daba.gov.lv/upload/File/DOC/SAP_Vilks-08_EN.pdf

                one can compare this breeding rate with wolf population which is not harvested (in Poland there’s a ban on wolf hunting since 1998 and now they have only 700 wolves or in YNP in 2009 were 124 wolves and only 6 breeing pairs).

                livestock depredation (usually happens to the same owners due to negligence):

                2005 – 9 sheeps, 5 goats, 6 cattle
                2008 – 39 sheeps, 6 goats
                2010 – 5 cattle, 41 sheeps, 2 goats + injured 6 cattle/calves , 29 sheep
                2011 – 242 (of them 176 sheep + 25 dogs)
                2012 – 170 (of them 163 sheep)
                2013 (till Oct 1st, 2013) – 174 (of them 152 sheep)

                Wolf pup killing was a dominant feature of the current wolf hunting season – from July 15 till October 5th hunters killed 113 wolves and 74 of them were pups, that is, they killed 2 1/2 – 5 months old pups.

                The trick/ruse how they accomplished this is by using fake (human) howling and eliciting pups’ response – so they were able to locate wolves and later organized hunt with fladry.

              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                resulting in a lower density void which is then is partly refilled by in-migration, as well as net reproduction


                it’s unknown if wolf density in Latvia is lower because Estonia has very big grizzly bear and Eurasian lynx (who is two times bigger than Canadian lynx) populations and fewer ungulates.

                Lithuania doesn’t have lynxes (only few of them) and fewer ungulates.

                Russia’s Pskov region probably also doesn’t have higher wolf density but one cannot find scientific survey of game animals in Russia – but in local press they’re writing that wolf numbers are ~250-350 (and hunters are killing 70-100 wolves annually.

                One thing is certain though – Latvia has the biggest wolf harvest in the whole region and my suspicion is that LV hunters are regularly killing incoming wolves from EE,LT and RU.

                see short presentation with wolf maps in Estonia

                “Status and management of
                wolf in Estonia”


              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                presentation on Lithuania’s predators + maps:


              • Mareks Vilkins says:


                “Seven year experience of restricted wolf hunting in Baltic region: management systems,culls and responses in population.”
                Jānis OZOLIŅŠ,Peep MÄNNIL & Linas BALČIAUSKAS


              • Mareks Vilkins says:


                1)when you mention Balkans, think Greece/Italy or Novak Djokovic (a Serbian professional tennis player generally considered to be one of the greatest tennis players of all time)

                2)when you mention Baltics, think Sweden/Finland or Maris Strombergs

                BMX Men’s Final Highlights – Strombergs Gold | London 2012

            • Mareks Vilkins says:


              to give you some info about Latvians to chew on:

              Clive Ponting (author of a fine book „ A New Green History of the World: The Environment and the Collapse of Great Civilizations”) has written the following about Latvians in Churchill’s biography:

              „The most overtly dramatic moment of Churchill’s time at the Home Office came in January 1911 when a gang of burglars (believed to be Latvians), who had shot three policemen and wounded two others during a break-in at a jeweller’s shop in Stepney.It was the beginning of the notorious Sidney Street siege. At 10.45am on 3 January Churchill, who was still at home in Eccleston Square, was asked to approve the use of troops with rifles to deal with the burglars who were firing on police from the house. He agreed and arrived half an hour later at the Home Office where nothing more was known. Together with Edward Marsh he set off for Stepney, where he arrived just before midday and characteristically took charge of the operation – calling up artillery to demolish the house and personally checking on possible means of escape. When the house caught fire he ordered, probably with police consent, the fire brigade not to attempt to put it out. When the fire burnt itself out, two bodies were found and Churchill left the scene just before 3pm. His presence had been unnecessary and uncalled for – the senior Army and police officers present could easily have coped with the situation on their own authority. But Churchill with his thirst for action and drama could not resist the temptation. His intervention attracted huge publicity and for the first time raised in public doubts about Churchill’s character and judgement, which some of his colleagues had already had in private, and which were to increase in the next few years.
              Within a fortnight of the siege of sidney street Churchill circulated a draft Bill to the Cabinet to introduce harsh new laws against aliens. He had dropped a provision that he originally wanted giving the police the right to arrest any alien who had no obvious way of earning a living but had retained one that allowed an alien, if he could not find sureties for good behaviour, to be kept in prison until the Home Secretary, not the courts, was satisfied about his position. Churchill described this power as ‘a fine piece of machinery’. The Bill also contained what Churchill rather coyly described to his colleagues as ‘two naughty principles’ – a deliberate distinction between aliens and British subjects and the power to deport an alien merely on suspicion even though he had committed no criminal offence. The Bill was introduced into the Commons by Churchill at the end of April but MPs refused to pass such an illiberal measure and it had to be withdrawn.

              For an update on the Sidney Street siege one should consult Philip Ruff’s ‘A Towering Flame: The Life & Times of ‘Peter the Painter’’ (2012)


            • Mareks Vilkins says:


              a group of Scots reporting about Latvia for 2 years:

              1) Nature Exchange 2013


              Mairi Buchanan, The Lodge Forest Visitor Centre Supervisor, Forestry Commission Scotland

              James Elliot, Countryside Ranger

              Jean Frame, Woodland Assistant, The National Trust for Scotland

              Neil Mitchell, Reserves Manager, Scottish Natural Heritage Loch Leven NNR

              Karen Rentoul, Operations Office

              David Sexton, Mull Officer, RSPB Scotland

              2) Nature Exchange
              Report of study tour,
              7-14 September 2012

              Liz Auty
              Jools Cox
              Tom Edwards
              Ian Francis
              Karen van Eeden

            • Mareks Vilkins says:

              Thank you for the geography (unnecessary, really) … lesson


              I know – I just used it as a pretext to promote video link 😀

          • JB says:

            “The Greatest Threat to World Peace…
            The United States polls higher than Pakistan…”

            That doesn’t surprise me given the overseas press. This morning the BBC ran a program on the Ukraine-Russian conflict in which an interviewee claimed it was all a conspiracy by the U.S. I think the British interviewer was slightly embarrassed by the comments their “expert” was making, as she should be.

            Meanwhile, back in reality, politics in the US have swung so far toward the libertarian wing of the Republican party, that Rand Paul, a guy who advocates non-interventionism in international affairs, recently won the influential (among Republicans) CPAC straw poll.

            Good grief.

            • Mareks Vilkins says:


              US Military and Clandestine Operations in Foreign Countries – 1798-Present


              one can also remember hysteria whipped up by US press and its experts before Iraq invasion when Americans were preparing their homes from imminent SH attack and buying out grocery shops.

              • WM says:

                Too bad this summary of US interventions in other foreign countries, or adjacent occupied territory, doesn’t break out which are the result of oppression, aggression or imperialist acts of other countries or invading forces, as well as those perceived as purely evil deeds of the US. It might show a more objective picture, rather than just trying to paint the US in a bad light. The Germans are still mad at the US/Great Britain for allowing the Russians to March into Berlin the final days of WWII. This, of course, was later a regret of Eisenhower and Montgomery for forty years after.

              • JB says:

                Yes, and how many times was the US beaten up in the European press for not intervening or not intervening fast enough (e.g., Somalia, and now in Syria)? From the US perspective, it’s damned if you do, and damned if you don’t. No matter what the US foreign policy is, someone is there to lay all the world’s woes at our feet.

                I agree. The US press CAN be just as bad as the European press; neither of which are anywhere near as bad is pseudo news organizations in Russia or China that just parrot the government’s/party’s line.

              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                From the US perspective, it’s damned if you do, and damned if you don’t.


                not so. Just observe UN Charter about legitimate use of force/threats in international relations.

                “How America Gets Away With Murder: Illegal Wars, Collateral Damage and Crimes Against Humanity”


                They call it “collateral damage,” but legally and morally it is really mass murder. In Kosovo, America claimed its war was a “humanitarian intervention,” in Afghanistan, “self-defense,” and in Iraq, it claimed the authority of the Security Council of the United Nations. Yet each of these wars was illegal according to established rules of international law. According to these rules, illegal wars fall within the category of “supreme international crimes”. So how come the war crimes tribunals never manage to turn their sights on America and always wind up putting America’s enemies — “the usual suspects” — on trial?

                This new book by renowned scholar Michael Mandel offers a critical account of America’s illegal wars and a war crimes system that has granted America’s leaders an unjust and dangerous impunity, effectively encouraging their illegal wars and the war crimes that always flow from them.

              • Mareks Vilkins says:


                on WW2 and the US role in it an excellent survey is :

                The Myth of the Good War: America in the Second World War

                It spent four months on the nonfiction bestseller lists in Europe in 2000, and has since been translated into German, Spanish and French.

              • WM says:


                Thank you for the geography (unnecessary, really), wildlife/wolf biology lessons in your country (sincerely).

                As well, thank you for the WWII history and economics of war/US intervention information. Always good to hear alternative views of complex topics. Probably don’t even need to buy Canadian Jacques Pauwels’ book to get a perspective on his view of the US. One can get a summarized flavor of it here:

                I suppose there will always be mixed motives (including corporate collusion/profits) in taking on gargantuan efforts that kill and/or displace large numbers of people, maybe masked in some kind of “humanitarian” or self-preservation. Amazing how many times the US is asked directly by those oppressed to intervene. Of course, even the UN gets a bit pissy – they want US resources to render aid, on the one hand, and with the other they criticize what we do.

                And, to think alleged criminal Latvians were once the catalyst for proposed British legislation to deal with aliens on British soil. Reminds me a bit of what is going on here in the US, with our illegal alien issue, and a government paralyzed from coming up with a plan – any plan- to address it, all the while the problem becomes larger, as political inaction Congress spreads, on so many topics only it can address.

              • WM says:


                Not so much on wildlife news, but continuing our conversation about Russian aggression, this just in the news today – US VP Biden in the Baltics reassuring allies of support in view of Russian expansionism.

                You could always just tell the US to go away, Mareks. Apparently your President is not to eager for that to happen. And, your finance minister wants compensation for inconvenience or damages for anything the EU does in the way of sanctions against Russia. Talk about wanting it both ways. 😉


              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                Biden in the Baltics reassuring allies of support in view of Russian expansionism.


                just stick with common sense and keep in mind agendas of Big Guys – it’s all about oil/gas and the US/RU struggle over West-European allies to secure their own economic/financial interests (or sometimes “credibility” contest between bullies)

                Small countries like the Baltic or Balkan republics have paid enourmous price in blood and economic losses over 20th century – thanks a lot, but we don’t want to repeat those lessons again (throwing themselves as pawns in Big Boys game).

                Nevermind mass media hysteria about evil/ sinister/ omnipresent Kremlin just remember that Russia’s foreign policy is determined by local dominant groups – oligarchs/billionaires + security establishment. And as they have nostalgic memories about superpower they try to compensate this by sending their kids to Western elite schools so they can establish friendly family relations between folks who matter.
                I mean, Russian elite will agressively protect pipelines and Caspian oil/gas reserves but they don’t want to get involved in wars as it is too expensive and also bad from PR point of view (they will not receive love letters from Western elites when they smash foreign countries close to Russia’s borders)

                Russian elites want to be a part of Western elites (that’s why Russian billionaires are choosing London as their second pet because they know that they cannot influence US establisment to the same extent as British one who is thankful for ‘foreign investment’during it’s dire straits)

                My policy is that Latvia should promote it’s interests through soft policy – tourism. I mean, it’s senseless to spend our little money on PR war with Russia (when we have vocal and united Russian minority in a capital city Riga which is ruled by their representative Nils Usakovs (mayor) and second largest city Daugavpils).

                Let’s perceive this Big Boys’ gambit as a political theatre,and thank them for our entertainment (but by that I don’t want to sound like I’m cheapening the suffering in other countries).

      • Louise Kane says:

        WM I posted the link because I think that the EU now is more like our fed era government in many respects (albeit evolving) and the states the individual countries. I was intrigued to see these scientists attempting to tackle the issues in wildlife management and that they were looking to the US for comparison purposes. I follow the Scandanavian “mess” as Peter calls it and also agree there are close similarities in western wolf management. I find all this interesting because wolves migrate, predator hate seems to wax and wane according to regional and cultural influences and of course the presence of livestock and producers. As you know by now I am a big advocate of national predator protections as I don’t believe adequate protections can occur without them. The EU laws are just as complex, overlapping and controversial as state and federal laws here. But we have a very strong history of state and federal case law to refer to and the EU is just developing policy. Its interesting and I thought you would appreciate reading about it, as you are well read on these issues.

        • Peter Kiermeir says:

          + Yes, and how many times was the US beaten up in the European press for not intervening or not intervening fast enough (e.g., Somalia, and now in Syria)? From the US perspective, it’s damned if you do, and damned if you don’t. +

          Exactly! On the other hand, wo else, besides the US, has the “infrastructure” to intervene somwhere on the globe. Who else, besides the US claims global leadership?Like it or not it´s you guys. It comes handy of course, that your lare military arsenal is equally suitable for global SAR duties or desaster relief. Ok, accepted, down in the blackest countries of Africa, there you´ll find more Ilyushins than Hercs

          • Peter Kiermeir says:

            The Crimean Crisis is a Catch22 situation for Germany! Upon the German Unification the then-Chancellor (a Christian Democrat) promised the Russians (Gorbatschov) that NATO will not attempt to reach beyond the borders of Eastern Germany (the former GDR). Hmmm, with the Ukraine eager to work closely with NATO or even willing to join, it´s a little bit touchy for us. On the other hand, another of our former Chancellors (a social democrat famous for calling Putin a “flawless democrat”) turned to Putins Russia`and become Manager for Gazprom!
            At least our present Chancellor can communicate with good old “Vladimir” in the Russian Language and in German (he is a former KGB officer based in the GDR)

  40. Nancy says:

    “He was out coyote hunting,” said Demick. “It kind of surprised him. He said, ‘Well … wolf season is open, I’ve got a wolf tag, and here’s a wolf.'”


  41. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Senator Fights Wolf Reintroduction
    “Rim Country Sen. Chester Crandell (R-Heber) has taken the lead in pressing for legislation to limit the reintroduction of Mexican Gray Wolves in Arizona.
    He has supported or introduced bills that would encourage Arizona residents to trap the endangered wolves in violation of federal laws (SB 1211), set aside $250,000 so that state can file lawsuits concerning the federal effort (SB 1212) and sponsored a resolution against the reintroduction program (SCR 1006).”

  42. rork says:

    But in Michigan signatures were turned in to try and overturn wolf-hunt-law #2, that actually doesn’t mention wolves but let our Natural Resource Commission declare wolves game animals. Sorry if it was already pointed to somewhere. Made news yesterday, but I was busy.

    There are at least a dozen articles like it. Here’s another:
    There’s a commenter with handle Ma’iingan who is pretty knowledgeable, but likely not the famous one I know from here. I suspect it’s a frequent writer I know, with a new handle.

  43. Ida Lupines says:

    Good news about the free roaming bison!

    These magnificent animals are uniquely American, and Americans and visitors love to see them.

    • Kathleen says:

      Yes…the MT Supreme Court decision is good news, but it’s qualified good news. From BFC:

      The Gardiner-area habitat expansion is not a solution to the serious challenges wild bison face in Montana, nor does it stop the slaughter. Mature bull bison will benefit. Mixed cow-calf family groups are not afforded the same tolerance. The new habitat available is seasonal, allowing bison to use portions of the Gardiner Basin for a few months. Hunting pressures have increased with this expanded habitat, and hazing of all wild bison in the Gardiner Basin will resume every spring. Because this is a state case, it does not stop Yellowstone National Park’s capture and slaughter plans. Indeed, wild buffalo have barely been able to use the 75,000 acres of habitat that they have been granted, due to the Park’s buffalo capture and slaughter operations, and hunting just outside of Yellowstone’s boundary.

      Don’t know if you’ve seen the pics of discarded, near-term fetal calves after their moms were killed by hunters, or if that aspect has already been previously commented on here: http://www.othernationsjustice.org/?p=11187

      • Ida Lupines says:

        No, I haven’t. Such a terrible, terrible waste, and such little respect for life. Where’s the ethics here? And it certainly makes one wonder about hunters who complain about wolves killing elk calves. Something should be done about challenging the Park’s capture and slaughter policy by visitors to the Park.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Aha, so that’s what’s wrong with some of the Democrats!

    • W.Hong says:

      I am confused, this link does not seem to contain any information on wildlife?

      • Nancy says:

        W. Hong – Google Tea Party.

        • W.Hong says:

          I have been here long enough to know what the tea party is and have read some of their radical ideas, but I thought this was suppose to be able wildlife?

          • Nancy says:

            W. Hong,

            Your thoughts on this site:


            And how you think even local politics, might come into play with regard to wildlife, their habitat, etc?

            • W.Hong says:

              I am not qualified to render opinions on those types of issues, I do know that many people are concerned with population numbers, but I am not one of them, remember I came from China, we have over a billion people in China, but we still had many places that no one lived.

            • Immer Treue says:

              W. Hong,

              Whether I’m nice or not matters little. Two people, myself included, suggested to you to do a bit of leg work yourself.

              If not, I can also drop a bomb that you are someone here on an alias, here to bust chops, and only that. A while ago, I came to that assumption. I’ve said before, if I’m wrong, I’ll eat the crow providing some Chardonnay is present to wash down said fowl.

              To go out on the limb a bit farther, I don’t believe Wisconsin is a province of China.

              • W.Hong says:

                Immer Treue,

                I am W. Hong, I have to translate the message that are posted here, which some don’t translate very good.

                I think I will look elsewhere for information on these topics, thank you.

                good by

              • Louise Kane says:

                Immer, I am taking a class in Chinese language and culture to follow up on one that I took years ago. I can say that the translation issue is one that is real. Also I could see some from China responding as W Hong has. Just saying the two cultures are immensely different. I did not think troll but trying to understand and communicating things differently than many Americans might. IMHO

              • Immer Treue says:


                I don’t use the word “troll”. Nancy and I made suggestions to said individual, nothing mean spirited …

                Whether cultural or not , responses over months have been odd, in particular to who and how replies are made.

              • Nancy says:


                Can fully relate to “lost in translation” but I think Immer is right on target here 🙂

    • Elk375 says:

      I think that there is more to this story and in the next few days more information will become available.


  44. Mark L says:

    (not wildlife y’all…just boring state economics)

    the deep south, particularly north Alabama has been an aviation player for a long time (Boeing, Redstone Arsenal, MSFC, etc.), just new to A/C manufacturing. Airbus was VERY strategic in placement of their new facility in south Alabama where few would oppose within the state. Who could blame them?
    Its going to get even more political after the next election.

    • WM says:

      Yeah, I know Huntsville. the space program and all. You forgot Boeing Tennessee. We could talk about the 787’s that have been coming to Everett the last few months with their huge wiring problems from the new plant in SC, but the aviation manufacturing wannabes’, as in integrating the most complex manufacturing products in human history, have already shown their expertise level. Sorry, I just had to say that for the home town team.;)

      • Peter Kiermeir says:

        Your deep south is also an attractive hotspot for the German automobile industry: BMW = Spartanburg, Volkswagen = Chattanooga, Mercedes = Tuscaloosa.
        Vice Versa, Ford is doing quite well in Germany but GM made a prime example of mismanagement out of one of the oldest German car manufacturers: Opel

        • Mareks Vilkins says:

          The Battle for Chattanooga: Southern Masculinity and the Anti-Union Campaign at Volkswagen

          BY MIKE ELK

          MARCH 13, 2014


        • WM says:

          Indeed, global manufacturing with some level of reciprocity has been burgeoning over the last couple of decades, especially in the automobile industry. The aviation industry is a bit different with the 3 European governments involved in Airbus/EADS, and military products. Very few opportunities for US companies to offer their wares with manufacturing facilities IN HOME European countries – when Boeing opens a final assembly plant in France, Germany or Spain (maybe even the UK), I will take back these words. By the way, were you aware Northrup (partnered with Airbus on the original tanker competition) actually developed the first evaluation model for the competition, with arbitrary point assignment to certain military airstrips that fit the Airbus offering in the competition, BUT would have added substantial additional cost outside the competition for runway extensions and tarmac weight improvements so the larger/heavier Airbus tanker could actually be used. That was one of the criteria upon which GAO hammered the uneven field RFP and the initial Northrop/Airbus win. And, of course, John McCain was a heavy handed chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee with a dislike for Boeing (and again his rather obvious undue influence from former EADS executives who were boldly on his Presidential campaign staff). And, then, there is the curious relationship of former NASA Administrator Sean O’Keefe (some may know him as being injured in the plane crash that killed AK Senator and all-round bad guy, Ted Stevens), who until just early this year was head of EADS/Airbus North America. This political-economic stuff is so complex you need flow charts just to begin to understand how it all works, or doesn’t.

          I know, not wildlife news, but this stuff does shape and influence the way our world progresses/regresses, including the politics with federal agencies like Interior.

          • Peter Kiermeir says:

            I cannot remember that a Boeing production plant in Europe was ever remotely considered. I do not really know why. It could have made sense because Boeing dominated the airline market in Europe well into the Airbus era. Indigenous European airliner production, e.g. by Fokker, Hawker Siddley etc., measured it´s success in a few hundreds of airliners built, not thousands. And, from a political point of view, a Boeing plant in Europe was not something impossible to achieve. As far as I remember, the only US aircraft manufacturer actually opening a production plant (not license production) in Europe was Cessna, with its plant in Reims/France.

            • WM says:

              I think European manufacturing for commercial aircraft by Boeing was only in the concept stage – labor costs were too high, USA workers more productive, and the EADS/Airbus political pressures against it, simply too much. However, there was a Boeing/McDonnell Douglas subsidiary in the Czech Republic outside Prague, that was to have built fighter trainers and eventually F-18 fighters for NATO member countries, in partnership with CSA/Ceska. Transitioning a workforce and factories from communist thinking to capitalist thinking was too much, apparently.

    • Yvette says:

      Not wildlife related, but I have been wanting to make a trip to AL. Last week we had a tribal history symposium and I learned the first federal road went right through Mvskoke lands (way, way back before the removal). That made me want to make a trip down there more than ever.

      Lots of cool things in AL and I also want to see if I can locate any of my mom’s family. AL is a beautiful state, and I’d like to return for a visit. Can’t make it this year, so maybe the summer of 2015.

      • Mark L says:

        Yvette, if you (or friends in Alabama) want to hear a lecture on removal/trail of tears, a friend of mine is giving one in Huntsville next month. Ralph can give you my email address if needed.

        • Yvette says:

          I know I can’t make it down there. I wish I could hear that lecture. I’ll take the information and forward it to our Culture and Preservation Dept., and post it on the fb book MCN page. There are people on there from all over the place; lots of them are in the SE.

  45. Mark L says:

    No irony that many western states have predominantly Scandinavian ancestry also…
    Kind of like us fighting mother Russia….we keep finding the same ‘bad guys’ turning up over and over again.

    ‘and I’ll get on my knees and pray…we won’t get fooled again, no’

    • Immer Treue says:

      Ironically, the last redoubt of wolves in the lower 48, northern Minnesota, heavily salt and peppered with the Scandinavians and Finns.

    • rork says:

      Wanna say that clearly, so I don’t go in over-sarcasm mode without being sure. Oh, and drop a hint about your ancestry.

      • Immer Treue says:

        Mark L or me?

        • rork says:

          My reply was to Mark L, who seemed close to a red line.

          • Mark L says:

            Nah, nowhere close to red lines. I’ve got some Scandinavian also (I am a mutt…lots of varied ancestry). I was commenting on WM’s comment on Russian treatment of wolves. Jared Diamond makes the point in ‘Guns Germs and Steel’ than we carry our culture with us wherever we move to. When Scandinavians came here they brought a way of looking at wolves. Koreans, a different view, Russians, Inuit, French, Australian, all had their own views of wolves (or dingoes). If you could look at a map that superimposed human heritages on it, I’d be curious to see if some places that hunt wolves have a higher ‘anti-wolf cultural heritage’ index (if there is such a thing) than others. My observation, from looking at internet pictures of people hunting wolves is that there is obviously a northern European trend on the wolf hunters. Not a lot of blacks, indians, Indians, Asians, pacific islanders, etc. Why? Do they just not care to hunt wolves? Just not hunt at all?
            I’m also part cajun so can’t throw stones….just watch duck or alligator hunters on TV and see my relatives…some are good people but some are obsessed with killing stuff with guns. Where did this ‘solve your problems with guns’ attitude come from? And does it make us less creative problem solvers when we just shoot our problems instead of trying something else first?

            • WM says:

              ++ My observation, from looking at internet pictures of people hunting wolves is that there is obviously a northern European trend on the wolf hunters. Not a lot of blacks, indians, Indians, Asians, pacific islanders, etc. Why? Do they just not care to hunt wolves? Just not hunt at all?++

              I think your answer may rest as much in regional distribution of some ethnic groups geographically. My experience is that much of the rural population of the West and Midwest is Northern European, whereas minorities are likely to be more prevalent in the urban areas (Detroit?). A lot of people do not know that Washington DC is roughly 55-60% African-American; it used to be even higher closer to 75% if I recall. I remember being astounded by this when I first visited DC as a student (a buddy of mine was going to Howard University [basically black Harvard] for a semester – there were only about 10 white guys on campus).

              And, even some of the states in the West with the largest Native American populations, they still account for less than 5 percent of total state population. But compare, for example, the Colville Tribe in WA which has had their second season of wolf hunting.

              There are other exceptions, and one of my good friends is third generation Chinese – his now retired father was a dentist and a hunter. He passed this heritage on to his son, and although he is also an urban dweller he still has an interest in hunting, but even more so an interest in precision range shooting. He, like me, has no interest in hunting wolves, but he clearly understands my concerns as an elk hunter when speaking of middle of the road wolf population ranges for the NRM, OR and WA, and the polarity of the wacko anti-s, or off the wall pro-wolf folks.

              • Yvette says:

                Excellent points, WM, but also, wolves were exterminated in England by 1500. When the early colonists settled on the eastern portion of this continent they also brought their wolf hatred with them and began torturing and killing wolves. I’ll give them this: since they also introduced pigs and cattle, and the philosophy of private property, any loss of that livestock in those times could easily put them in a precarious life and death situation.

              • Ken Cole says:

                When was the last time you were in Anchorage? That city is a hell of a lot more diverse than even Boise. At least that was my impression when I was there in 1997.

  46. Immer Treue says:

    Four weeks, and the torch bearer anti-wolf specialists, aircraft, etc, nothing.


    • Nancy says:

      Immer – Never gonna know what actually took place on the Swigert’s ranch but the rest of Idaho should take some comfort in knowing when ya have connections, whether real or imaginary with wolves, there’s no limit to the grandstanding:

      noun: acting or speaking in a way intended to attract attention and to influence …


    • Louise Kane says:

      wonder if any wolves are left in that area
      how much money was spent on this? The way this state spends federal and state resources to persecute and kill wolves is disgraceful

    • Nancy says:

      This is good news Jeff E.

      • Louise Kane says:

        yes good news
        the sportsman heritage act or bipartisan sportsman act would make it impossible to ban lead ammunition, just one other good reason to work against those proposed bills.

    • rork says:

      Super-sketchy words about access in that article.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      This woman is so far out of her depth it isn’t funny. I’ve no idea why she is in this position. Thank goodness she’s only got 2-3 years left before she does any real damage. She said she wants to see ‘millions of children running around our national parks’. *shudder* Hopefully they won’t be tagging and defacing them along with it.

      • Ida Lupines says:

        From the Daily Kos:

        The fact that a Democratic senator and a Democratic Secretary of Interior were the guest of the RMEF at their headquarters means nothing in a political way. RMEF is truly non partisan. RMEF is also low key and strives for consensus. No screaming headlines, or scandals, the RMEF quietly does the hard work that is conservation day in and day out.

        Excuse me while I barf.

        Secretary of the Interior Jewell and Senator Testor Meet With the RMEF

  47. Ida Lupines says:

    I don’t mean to be rude, but anyone who has ever spent time on the internet knows that people may not be who they seem to be.

    If Mr. Hong is serious about learning about wildlife issues, only time will tell. People here are more than willing to help someone learn.

    I should add that some of the Tea Party politicians are responsible for these retro wildlife policies, which is why it was posted. OK? 🙂

    • Ida Lupines says:

      This is why when a big announcement was made by the FDA recently about voluntary cut backs on antibiotics in our factory farms, I just had to shake my head. Without antibiotics, mass production of living, breathing animals in close quarters cannot work, for animal health or human health? Smaller, traditional farming, more likely to work.

  48. Mark L says:

    After rereading rork’s comment, I see why he saw it as a slant to Scandinavians. Not what I intended. I’m questioning whether there is a cultural response to wolves, not through personal experience, but through what we’ve been taught (school, fairy tales, songs,etc.). How much of that seeps into our actions?
    Referencing what WM said, I think we are more than willing to be hypersensitive to Russian aggression because we have seen it before in our recent history. It’s become a part of our culture over the last 100 years. if other countries make aggressive moves we may ignore them or respond more softly in the same scenarios. Do we act more aggressively towards large carnivores (or Russia) because our cultures view them as dangerous, even though statistically they aren’t?

    • Yvette says:

      I’m questioning whether there is a cultural response to wolves, not through personal experience, but through what we’ve been taught (school, fairy tales, songs,etc.). How much of that seeps into our actions?

      You can also add the bible to that since there is at least one verse that mentions wolves with negative connotations.

      I’ve been wondering about the development of attitude toward wolves since my interest in the fate of wolves piqued after the delisting and the Wedge pack incident. Here is one research article (more social research) from 1989. It’s worth reading. The link is at the top of this blog.


      I know we humans’ attitudes and mores evolve. I wish I had a solution that would expedite more tolerance, acceptance and the desire to co-exist with our predator species.

    • Mike says:

      Next time she should try meeting with people who actually give a shit about public land.

  49. Nancy says:

    “The department is monitoring approximately 30 wells that are at risk in that area. Roberts said state officials this week had warned well operators about potential flooding”


    Yessiree, the US is on the road to independence from foreign oil, but at what cost to the enviornment?

    • Immer Treue says:

      “Yessiree, the US is on the road to independence from foreign oil, but at what cost to the enviornment?”

      This comment, not you Nancy, make me retch. Petrochemicals is a world market. If $ is to be made exporting petrochemicals, then that will be done. Nothing against any business making money, but the excuse of energy independence is a gigantic lie.

      A “perfect storm” drove propane prices up over $5 a gallon in the upper Midwest during the midst of the coldest Winter in 35 years, and part of that storm was exporting propane. Drying corn crops with propane (enormous expenditure), and pipeline maintenance/shift in use were other variables.

      • Immer Treue says:

        It’s gonna warm up into 20’s today, but currently -24° as I write. A persistent and consistent theme all Winter.

        • Nancy says:

          I feel for you Immer. Thankfully the temps only got that low here (-24) a couple of times this winter but it had one heck of an impact on my electric & propane usage in that short period. Can’t imagine the wood you’ve gone thru to stay warm.

      • Nancy says:

        Immer – this is the response I got from one of my senators recently when I expressed concerns over the millions and millions of gals. of natural gas being “flared/burnt off” in the Bakkens (as many of us were paying $3 + a gal. for propane) I wanted to know why there were no regulations in place to capture the natural gas BEFORE they started drilling these wells:

        “Thank you for contacting me about burning natural gas and the propane shortage. I appreciate your concerns.

        Energy security is one of the most important issues facing Montanans and all Americans. Our energy security will shape both our economic future and ensure our national security. As we continue to cultivate our natural energy sources, we must do it responsibly.

        North Dakota state law allows natural gas to be flared, or burnt off into the atmosphere, during a one year period from the date of first production from the well. After this one year period, gas flaring must end unless the industrial commission grants the producer an exception. Currently, a federal inter-agency task force is working with the industry to find solutions, even though there are no federal regulations to limit natural gas flaring.

        As for propane, the stocks are running low because of the late harvest and extreme temperatures this winter. I recently urged the President to work with the propane industry and state officials to provide relief to the areas hit hardest by the propane shortage, including Montana. Our state relies on propane for about 12 percent of our home heating, but due to the severe winter weather, folks are having a hard time obtaining and paying for propane. Montana declared a State of Emergency regarding the propane shortage in February, which I hope will ease constraints on transporting propane.

        Folks should not have to decide between basic needs like heating their homes and feeding their families. It’s important that Montanans have access and can afford fuel to heat their homes in these cold winter months. Please do not hesitate to contact me again if I can be of further assistance”

        • Immer Treue says:

          Representative double talk for some one screwed up, heads should roll but won’t, sorry you folks got cold or hit in the pocket book, but suck it up and we’ll try not to screw you as bad next year.

          Thankful for putting away the extra wood. One might hazard a guess the propane industry would put away proper reserves.

          • JEFF E says:

            sounds like you may be in the mid 30’s by the end of the week.

            break out the sun screen.

            • Immer Treue says:

              Have required sun screen most of winter, as high pressure systems that have brought the cold are usually accompanied by very clear skies. Sunlight reflecting off snow potent.

              Yesterday high only 15° but beautiful day to be outside. Today as well.

  50. Louise Kane says:

    Dear God Nancy
    These two together at the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation
    The Bipartisan Sportsman Act, the Sportsman Heritage Act, Killing wolves and predators and gaining access on more public lands to do so, thats what is important. Jewell and Tester meeting there makes me want to vomit. As if these “sportsmen” did not have enough undue influence. Jewell’s quote is precious I’m here with the Rocky Mountain Elf Foundataion hearing whats important to the, It appears thats all she has been hearing….I thought Salazar was bad

    “[I’m] getting some input from sportsmen about the president’s budget and what’s important to them as far as habitat for fishing and hunting and hiking, and then access to that habitat, and really the role that public lands play in our economy and what we can do to make it a better experience ,” said Tester.

    Jewel also spoke about the Land and Water Conservation fund, of which she says more than 400 million dollars of offshore oil and gas revenues have been spent on conservation efforts in Montana.

    “I’m here with the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation hearing about what’s important to them, about the conservation of public lands, our management of the public lands for the long term health of wildlife as well as the people that live here and the people that come and recreate here,” said Jewell.”

  51. Nancy says:

    Beautiful day in Yellowstone and the bison are moving about on the North Entrance webcam if anyone is interested. Thanks RealNiceGuy for suggesting these webcams 🙂


  52. Peter Kiermeir says:

    BC’s Wolf Killing Plans Withheld for Almost a Year
    “Heavily censored documents documents suggest the British Columbia government has been withholding an updated wolf management plan since at least last May.”

    • Louise Kane says:

      Thank you for posting Peter. This seems ominous
      Canada also has some terribly antiquated and inhumane predator management policies.

  53. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Chernobyl’s Trees Won’t Decay, Increasing the Risk of Nuclear Forest Fire
    “As if the Ukraine didn’t have enough to worry about these days with Russia invading Crimea, recent scientific research points to the very real threat of a nuclear forest fire.”

    • Yvette says:

      Peter, have you seen the “Nature” episode titled, “The Radioactive Wolves of Chernobyl”?

      If not, you should watch it. It is stupefying how much the forest and wetland ecosystems have regenerated in the 30K exclusion zone. With people gone the beavers returned (no one to exterminate them) and began damning the man-made irrigation canals. Now the wetland functions are providing ecological services. The wolves no longer have their biggest threat (man) killing them and are thriving. They even have a population of black storks (I think I got the name right but I’m going from memory), which it described as an extremely shy bird and they just aren’t around where humans populate a place.

      You can view this on youtube or the PBS “Nature” website. I highly recommend it.

      Lastly, this site has a few of Sergei Gaschak’s photos (which are stunning!)from inside the zone.


      It’s amazing what animals can do when humans aren’t there to manage them.

      • Yvette says:

        One more link with wildlife pictures from inside the zone. This place simply fascinates me. A place I’ll probably never get to see, but I sure wish I could go there. Did you know that the Pripyat marshes were once so vast they stopped Ghengis Khan’s army from invading Russia?

        Pretty cool stuff.


      • Louise Kane says:

        I wonder how wolves would be impacted by the radioactivity if they were longer lived?
        at least they have somewhere they are not persecuted.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          But at such a terrible price! But it does keep the hunters at bay.

          • Peter Kiermeir says:

            I very well remember the year of the Chernobyl incident. Even though Germany was only remotely affected – luckily the winds blew into the other direction. A few years after I had the pleasure to visit the Ukraine a few times for business reasons and I also got a few opportunities to visit the rural Ukraine. It was a fantastic time with fine people in a beautiful country.

  54. Mareks Vilkins says:

    Rough diamond hints at vast quantities of water inside Earth


  55. Kathleen says:

    Coalition of Civil Liberties, Animal, Consumer Groups Head to Court over Controversial Idaho “Ag Gag” Law


  56. Ida Lupine says:


    I hate the idea of collaring pups still in dens, but I suppose the research is useful. Maybe Butch and his crew, and/or those conservation stalwarts, the RMEF, could offset the cost.

  57. Yvette says:

    Representative DeFazio’s op-ed in The Oregonian. It feels damned good to finally read positive opinion.


    • WM says:

      If I understand correctly both DeFazio’s state of OR, and neighboring WA want wolves delisted, so that they can manage and protect under state law (and they think do a better job). DeFazio represents the Eugene/Springfield area of Western OR, which is the population center of his district, and mostly a college town (U of O). I would not be a bit surprised if Predator Defense advocacy group put him up to this. I also think there are some factual inaccuracies in his opinion piece.

      He also has purposely confused the current delisting proposal, and the NRM delisting (and by omission the WGL delisting). I don’t like DeFazio for the same reasons I don’t like some of the anti’s like Orin Hatch from UT. They distort the issues.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Well stated too! Thanks for posting.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        I mean that Rep. DeFazio assessed the situation spot on. What’s the world coming to when Republicans of the past care more about wildlife than the Democrats of the present?

        • Yvette says:

          Dems and Repugs are both amount to pond scum, IMO. They’re just different species of pond scum.

          As you can tell, I have an extremely low opinion of politicians. State, federal, and tribal. Thing is, we’re stuck with them.

          I thought it was a good op-ed, and pretty much spot on.

          • Ida Lupine says:

            I can’t stand either one of the parties either. Although on rare occasions you can find a few decent politicians. Thanks, Rep. DeFazio!

            Here was my favorite part of the op-ed:

            Recently, FWS begrudgingly released that peer review from an independent, objective panel of top experts in the fields of ecology, taxonomy and genetics.

            And Sally Jewell says her hands are tied by science?

  58. Louise Kane says:


    managing predators without accounting for their social structures is dangerous

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Interesting report, Louise,

      Even in a large population, transmission of an infectious disease from only a few infected individuals can result in sufficient mortality to push groups below a critical threshold, ultimately threatening population persistence, the researchers report.

      It has been found in certain ecosystems that when wild dog packs are reduced to less than four individuals, they may be unable to rear pups because of trade-offs between specialized roles, such as pup guarding and hunting.

      Now what was that Idaho F&W was saying about what constitutes a pack and a breeding pair?

      • Yvette says:

        ++++, IMO, with some groups the goal is not to protect predators, it’s to exterminate them and look like you’re “managing” them.

  59. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Alaska Sues U.S. Government For Not Letting It Look For Oil In Polar Bear Habitat

  60. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Canada (BC): Hydro project will cause harm to Lillooet area endangered grizzly bears

  61. Nancy says:

    Last count – (end of 2012) 635. No idea on SSS, poaching? Leaves the population at what, around 300? No idea on pup numbers last year? Montana, subtle compared to Idaho’s public war on wolves.


  62. Nancy says:

    Huh…1 coyote killed (none trapped) in a 2 month long hunting season (because the population is small) so hey, lets extend the hunting season!

    “The News Journal of Wilmington reports (http://delmarvane.ws/1oli7LS) that the state legislature ordered DNREC to develop rules for a hunting season after farmers said the coyotes pose a threat to livestock”


    • aves says:

      You’d think the farmers who complained and the legislature that catered to them would be embarassed to see their b.s. so clearly exposed. But they are likely incapable of embarassment or accountability.

      At least the DNREC resisted calls for a year round unlimited hunt. But I doubt they can hold out for long against the anti-predator crowd.

  63. Peter Kiermeir says:

    One of India’s most prolific tiger poachers is dead
    To be honest, I do not believe that my now 18 month old granddaughter can still see a wild tiger in India.

  64. SEAK Mossback says:

    How do ski poles work for defense against a hungry wolf? A woman who lives just north of here tried her best but carries no grudge against the successful perpetrator . . . .

    • Nancy says:

      I wonder if it has anything to do with the latest controversy over allowing them to roam?

      Or, just some sicko with a gun?

      • Ida Lupines says:

        Wow. I worried about this happening after the ruling. It happened a lot sooner than I thought. Allowing guns in the park was another stupid thing to do, on top of everything else. We seem to have a blind spot about our capacity to do wrong.

        • Mike says:

          Glad to see a poster bringing up the gun-in-parks issue.

          • Elk375 says:

            Mike, one has always been allow to carry guns in a national park. In the old days a gun had to be unloaded and cased and out of slight.

            Today one can carry a gun according to state law. I like the new law because many times, I will leave Bozeman and go to the Centennial Valley via the US 191 to West Yellowstone. I can throw my rifle one the seat and not have to worry about putting it in a case. After opening morning I load my magazine and do not unload it until the end of hunting season. I never carry a round in the chamber in the truck, 99% of the time I am by myself. Things are simpler this way.

            • Mike says:

              ++Today one can carry a gun according to state law. I like the new law because many times, I will leave Bozeman and go to the Centennial Valley via the US 191 to West Yellowstone. I can throw my rifle one the seat and not have to worry about putting it in a case. ++

              Why do you need a rifle on your seat?

              • Elk375 says:

                Where else do I put it. My F150 does not have a extended cab. I always carry my rifle on the seat anyway.

        • Yvette says:

          We can thank Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn for that one.

          • W.Hong says:

            I think a criminal would do this even if guns were not allowed, do they search you car when you enter the park?

        • wolf moderate says:

          Trophy animals have been poached in national parks ever since they were created. Has nothing to do with allowing guns in parks. People who poach do not follow laws and regulations.

          • Ida Lupines says:

            But it sure makes it a hell of a lot easier. It might even embolden would-be poachers who might not have done it before. My money’s still on the disgruntled ranchers though. There are more things to consider than simply convenience for hunters, such as park safety and welfare of the animals. I’m sick of it.

            • Mike says:

              I don’t spend time in Yellowstone anymore since the gun rule or the wolf slaughter. The place is not the same. Feels violated. Angry locals with “smoke a pack a day” bumper stickers are often seen cruising the park, no doubt packing heat. Say the wrong thing and these people go crazy.

              Two years back I told off a group of local thugs because they were feeding hot dogs to a coyote. things got ugly pretty quick.

              Leadership from park headquarters has been non-existent, adding to the disquiet.

              Instead I spend my time in the national forests within the Yellowstone ecosystem. You still run into drunken, violent gun nuts and ATV’s-gone-wild, but you can escape them. Still, it’s hard to escape the sound of gunfire from makeshift shooting ranges.

              Gun nuts really are the worst. It all trickles from them….the wolf killing, the shooting, the culture of death.

              • Ida Lupines says:

                I remember telling a park official about tourists getting too close to elk, (walking right up to one to take a picture) and was told ‘you’re not on your turf here’. This was a long time ago. It was rather surprising.

          • Mike says:

            So far, that’s not the case. Animals are being shot that weren’t before.

  65. Mike says:

    A gun nut has mowed down three bison inside Yellowstone.


    • CodyCoyote says:

      Tnis is likely in retaliation for the Montana Supreme Court ruling last week that the State of Montana cannot summarily kill wild Bison that wander out of Yellowstone in winter.

      That’s my working theory anyway, knowing and observing irrascible Montana from next door in Wyoming where this is not an issue and we have a white Bison on our state flag…

  66. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Guest Column: Jaguar Jokes
    „Why did the jaguar want to cross the border into Arizona? To live fast, die before its time and make a beautiful corpse accessorized with a radio collar and ear tag.”

    • Mark L says:

      Don’t know Dexter Oliver (the op/ed writer), but that was a horribly written piece, imho.

      • WM says:

        Mark L.,

        I don’t know that it is such a “horribly written” piece, as it is a bit of pithy, sardonic humor, and a slap at some of the apparent absurdities attempted (at great cost I might add) under the Endangered Species Act.

        These absurdities, IMHO, many at the hands of CBD are the catalyst for what may be changes to the Act, and not in a good way if the coalition of Western States have their way – and they may in the next few years – with more of this stuff FWS is compelled to attempt as the result of a juggernaut of near ridiculous litigation by CBD and friends.

        • JB says:

          “Many of the same “expert” big-cat biologists who supposedly influenced the FWS to reach this conclusion are still waiting in the wings to do more mischief, as well as squander taxpayer dollars while funding their own agendas.”

          Hmm… it reads to me as yet another attempt to undermine scientists and the ESA. Here (above) the author suggests the scientists are doing something unethical or illegal (not sure as “mischief” is ambiguous) and that the ESA has become a waste of taxpayer money. So it may be ‘pithy’ (thought I don’t find it humorous), but it’s also downright unhelpful from a conservation perspective.

          You have made your ire for CBD, Defenders, WWP, and practically every other non-hunting conservation organization well-known. It seems your primary beef is that these organizations are too aggressive with their lawsuits? I’m willing to concede the point that they have been all about the stick (without much carrot); however, they would counter that they let other organizations worry about carrots and their strength is in their legal prowess. According to CBD, 93% of the cases they take on are won or settled favorably. And as the article above notes, they keep their attorneys pretty busy. So it seems to me that as someone who is allegedly interested in conservation, you should be thanking groups like CBD for forcing enforcement and implementation of one of the few federal laws that provides a mechanism for conservation (instead of touting the talking points of developers, industry and those who would rid us of the law altogether)? Or, I might be a bit pithy myself and restate the question this way: Whose side are you on?

          • WM says:


            ++Whose side are you on?++

            Fair question. I am on the side that does not want to see significant bad changes in the ESA, which I believe are looming on the horizon (how far off is hard to tell, but it is coming), with some of this righteous, technical interpretation of the ESA to advance costly and maybe unachievable or politically dangerous goals for some species. This jaguar article is a case in point.

            When one looks at the win rate for a plaintiff, it is important IMHO to distinguish between and among the slam dunks on the easy issues, and the ones where there are very gray areas, or those based on highly technical legal arguments which may not have been thought of at the time of statute drafting (resulting in decisions the drafters may not have wanted). Let’s focus on the gray area stuff, and on outcomes that may win in a particular case, but raise an issue that results in wholesale changes in statutes that go much farther than they need to.

            For example, is there relationship between the number of wins WWP has put on the board under the 1976 FLPMA act which requires the BLM to do land use planning and environmental assessments on grazing allotments/permits, forcing the BLM to follow the law. Now, there are proposed changes to the law making wholesale exceptions to these once sensible provisions. And, by the way, I support the work of WWP in that area. However, I think they also made some questionable decisions to litigate in other areas, which risk throwing the baby out with the bath water under several federal laws, if you get my drift.

            And, as I have mentioned before the NRM wolf litigation by Defenders et al., before judge Molloy, could likely still be under his review in a continuing case focusing on genetic connectivity and meta-population numbers had the plaintiffs there not pushed the idea that only part of the DPS could be delisted, while the WY part remained listed and at a higher level of protection – hence the Tester Congressional rider, that codified the earlier and sensible FWS delisting rule.

            There was an opinion piece in the Seattle Times just two days ago by a former NGO director who pretty much hit the issue spot on, relative to the huge amounts of money spent on just a couple of species of ESA listed salmon in the Northwest. This guy is a former vice president of Defenders of Wildlife, actually agreeing with Republican Doc Hastings (who is the embodiment of anti-environmental evil IMHO) who wants to gut the ESA. Interesting words here that some might consider:


            And by the way, there is little that could get me to support the way CBD conducts its business – spinmasters of half-truths in their PR materials. They are as bad as the anti’s.

            • JB says:

              WM: The article you’ve cited talks about “overspending” on salmon, but it is really a lament about the lack of funding for other species:

              “The Endangered Species Act contains a mission we gave ourselves as a nation to save the creatures that are uniquely found on our shores and nowhere else. I agree with Rep. Hastings that our goal is to completely restore hundreds more of those species.

              However, it is almost impossible to figure out how to do so when Congress redirects the majority of funding to a handful of species while hundreds of imperiled animals get almost nothing.”

              And of course, when Doc Hastings says that should be our goal he’s running the same sort of ‘spin factor’ that you criticize above. That is, he’s telling the public that the Act hasn’t been successful because so few species have been recovered/restored, but ignoring the fact that very few species that make it on the list go extinct. He’s also ignoring the fact that species’ success is correlated with higher spending and the designation of critical habitat–two things conservatives hate.


              The failures of the ESA should not be blamed upon the people who try to ensure the law is actually being implemented, they should be blamed on those who have worked so hard to strip funding away and curb species listings (i.e., Congress). And you know damn well that they have been bitching and complaining since Tennessee Valley Authority v. Hill (1978) — which significantly predates the formation of CBD.

              • WM says:


                I think the far simpler point is that too much money has been spent on salmon (or wolves) at the expense of other species, all the while increasing endangered species fatigue in political circles (individuals, states and Congress).

                Perhaps you have seen this document(coming out under Hastings’ Congressional leadership on the Natural Resources Committee, but nonetheless worthy of a read):


                Probably also good to look at the House Committee on Natural Resources – Membership:


                Hastings has decided to retire, and not to run for Congress again. Assuming the R’s still hold the House, does that make WY’s Cindi Lummis heir-apparent to Hastings’ Chair?

                I don’t see much change in the House the next two terms, and what does the future hold for the Senate (or D’s who are also in the ESA fatigue camp)?

                By the way if you read the ESA Working Group’s report, do keep in mind the Western Governor’s Conference – 17 states in the group, if I recall correctly- has its own wide ranging policy statement and wish list for changes to the ESA. I venture to say some say they suffer substantially from ESA political (and economic) fatigue.

                By the way, when I was trying to find this report, there were numerous announcements from “conservation” organizations about how bad the report was, but curiously not a one of them linked to the report (curious especially from CBD who peed all over it, and Defenders under the pen of Jamie Rappaport). Spinmasters indeed.

                I don’t like Hastings and what he stands for, but there are some observations and ideas in the report worth considering.

              • Louise Kane says:

                I agree with you JB that the article is more a lament about a lack of funding for other species. I think using salmon and wolves as an example of overspending is interesting. Salmon are still fished so the money going into restoration and impacting their recovery is not getting the biggest bang… as one of the commenters notes, “how many other endangered species are fished or hunted”. I would also hesitate to use Salmon as an example of overspending when the majority of funding in the past has gone toward damn removal and improving stream meanders or culverts. These projects don’t just help recovering salmon populations they bolster other species and habitats. It is interesting to note that the two species being bitched about when it comes to overspending are both species that have been allowed to be harvested or killed under ESA exemptions while listed.

              • JB says:

                Good points about dam removal, and continued harvest, Louise.

                WM: I don’t disagree with you about the politics, but I do disagree with the idea that the blame for “failures” should be laid at the feet of conservation groups such as CBD. Rather than buying into the rather convoluted argument about ‘predatory’ (yes I’ve seen that word used) conservation groups distorting the purpose of the ESA, I think the simpler explanation is that those who stand to benefit by removing the protections of the ESA (the same people who happen to be the wealthy powerbrokers) are simply trying to frame the issue in a way that benefits them (by removing protections and allowing development to go forward unimpeded). The myth here is that these interests can be pacified by limiting listings, critical habitat designations, or spending. Congress has been doing exactly that since TVA v. Hill (e.g., safe harbor agreements, candidate conservation agreements, limits on spending for listings, reduced budgets for FWS, the ‘warranted but precluded designation’, flexible 10(j) rules, etc., etc.) and the usual suspects are pushing the same agenda they were pushing 35 years ago.

              • Mike says:

                ++ The myth here is that these interests can be pacified by limiting listings, critical habitat designations, or spending.++

                Woah…what’s gotten into JB?

          • Louise Kane says:

            “So it seems to me that as someone who is allegedly interested in conservation, you should be thanking groups like CBD for forcing enforcement and implementation of one of the few federal laws that provides a mechanism for conservation (instead of touting the talking points of developers, industry and those who would rid us of the law altogether)?”

  67. Ida Lupines says:

    From (where else?) Salmon, ID:

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/03/18/yellowstone-bison-killed_n_4990130.html"Who Is Killing Yellowston'es Bison?

    I had wondered what had happened to these guys also. Slap on the wrist.

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/03/19/ancient-rock-formation-glenn-taylor-david-hall_n_4988811.html?utm_hp_ref=green"Men Charged With Toppling 170 Million Year Old Rock Formation Avoid Jail Time

    • Yvette says:

      From the HP article in Ida’s post.

      Licensed hunting of bison that wander from Yellowstone into Montana was sanctioned in 1985 but banned in 1991 because of public outcry as hunters lined up outside the park to shoot bison.

      We’ve all seen the pictures of bison bodies rotting in fields of the plains, and the sun bleached skulls piled 40ft high.

      I wonder if the perp that killed these three bison is a descendant of the ignorant immigrants that nearly succeeded in driving bison to extinction. Isn’t it wonderful how this ignorant mentality has been passed through the generations?

      We should donate to increase the reward. It needs to be doubled, at minimum.

  68. Mark L says:

    I know the article doesn’t say, but I”d be curious how far the bison were from the road. It seems to me the bison may have something in common with whooping cranes…..people shooting them from their cars.

  69. Jeff N. says:

    Wolf OR-7 collar is almost at end of life….should he be re-collared?


    • Mark L says:

      No. He served his time. Give some other wolf the albatross.

      • Jeff N. says:

        Mark L.,

        I tend to agree with this sentiment, however I would like it very much if they were able to confirm another/other wolves traveling with him before he goes off the grid.

  70. Jeff N. says:

    Good news regarding lobos. Looks like a new minimum count will be adjusted upward for the mexican gray wolf.

    This from the Mexican Gray Wolf Reintroduction Monthly Update covering February 1-28, 2014:

    Willow Springs Pack (collared AM1185, AF1279, mp1329 and mp1338)
    During February, the Willow Springs Pack used their traditional territory in the north central portion of the GNF. The IFT documented two uncollared pups on a remote camera this month. Two of the three uncollared wolves are thought to be pups of the year that were missed during the population count. They will be added as an addendum to the 2013 population count.

  71. Immer Treue says:

    “The Real Wolf” Review is online at Amazon for those that might be interested. Tough book to review as I have over 11 pages of legal pad notes on questionable to outright false information. A book review is not a point-by-point refutation, however with “The Real Wolf” its tough not to do so. There are many indisputable facts presented in the book, but nothing new for those who have been following the wolf situation for years.

    There are a couple decent essays between the covers, yet even within these essays, citing the proper/correct sources at times becomes a liability. The weakest essays, those of the two authors, Lyon and Graves again present nothing new (what is Graves obsession with ringworm in moose), though Lyon will bring a chuckle to the discerning reader.

    Stereotypical wolf advocates must understand that many who live in wolf country have been negatively impacted by the presence of wolves, and digest some of what is presented in The Real Wolf. A big concern though is someone who knows nothing about wolves and decides to wade through the exaggerations and distortions of this book to formulate an opinion.

    • Nancy says:


      + 1 Immer, on the review of this book.

      For those that order this book or read the reviews, I hope they will also look for Of Wolves and Men /Lopez and maybe Indian Givers/ Weatherford for additional insights.

      • Immer Treue says:


        Thanks and thank you for including the link, which I for some reason forgot to include.

        • Barb Rupers says:

          Thanks for the review, Immer.

          Roper was quick to jump in with critical comments.

          • Immer Treue says:


            Yep, he did. Pretty much to be expected. The initial “excitement” about the book is gone. It is time to look at it for what it is. Lyon writes the book contains irrefutable fact… I think not. Also, the book is falsely promoted.

      • Ida Lupines says:

        Well-written and expressed, Immer. Glad I didn’t waste my money.

        • Immer Treue says:


          I would suggest reading The Real Wolf. Inexpensive copies can be had. It’s actually an easy read, and there is “stuff” within the covers that are interesting and informative. Bergerud’s essayis pretty good, though it also
          Contains the supposed Mech quote. He wears his heart on his sleeve for caribou, and also draws on the research others, which he uses surgically (unless Lyon was just assembling a bunch of Bergerud passages) that might undermine his central premise that it is not anthropogenic reasons for caribou decline, but predators. Kind of fun digging through sources for verification or refutation.

    • Louise Kane says:

      Thank you as well for writing the review

      • Louise Kane says:

        I especially liked this “Rather than attempt to find any sort of conflict resolution, the slightest hint of wolves are here to stay, or suggesting avenues so that all stakeholders might find satisfaction, it continues to pour gasoline on smoldering embers of discontent. A veritable coven of wolf haters is listed as online support on page 260 who’s bitterness represents a vocal minority of Westerners who popularize their own myths about the reintroduced wolves: They are a voracious, nonnative subspecies; The government lies about their true numbers; They devastate elk herds, spread elk diseases, and harass elk relentlessly — often just for fun. The Real Wolf cannot even follow the advice of one of its rational contributors who says its time to quit wasting effort on this sort of fool’s errand and start properly managing wildlife.”
        smoldering embers of discontent!

        • Ida Lupines says:

          “A veritable coven”

          The best and most apt description of these most extreme of wolf haters I have ever read. What a visual!

    • Mike says:

      ++Stereotypical wolf advocates must understand that many who live in wolf country have been negatively impacted by the presence of wolves, ++

      Not sure “many” would be a good descriptor.

      • Immer Treue says:


        If you add the people in MN WI MT ID WY who farm/ranch private land and have lost livestock, or pets (that were note wondering out loose, but were taken by wolves in the yards of their owners, which has happened many times), and term less than many is disengenuous. Read the review.

        • Mark L says:

          Does anyone (or any agency) track the number of pets taken by wolves (as opposed to taken by coyotes, feral dogs, etc)? That would be an interesting statistic.

        • WM says:


          It would seem the costs to individuals for implementing preventive measures (guard dogs, fencing, more labor effort toward better animal husbandry practices, etc.) also expands the term “many.”

          • Immer Treue says:


            Sure does. And that’s why I used the term stereotypical wolf advocate who knows nothing of the hidden costs, and one of the problems with The Real Wolf, it does nothing/says nothing in regard to conflict analysis and resolution of these concerns. It is a continued titration of selected grievances.

          • Mike says:

            WM –

            Once you start spending time in wolf country, your rabid hate of them will subside.

            Unplug from this forum and get out for a bit.

        • Mike says:

          No, it really isn’t. “Many” sounds like it’s affecting a majority, which is complete fabrication.

          • Immer Treue says:

            No Mike, most is a majority. If I wrote a few, then I’m no better than the haters.

        • Mike says:

          All kinds of wild animals take pets. Coyotes, cougars, bears, foxes, etc.

          It’s a part of living with wild animals. Those who keep an eye on pets they love don’t have trouble. Those who let their pets go wherever they want run into problems.

          I spent 90 tent nights in fall/winter of 2013 in the Northern Rockies. I encounter numerous people, from PETA folks to hunters to vegans to fly shop owners (all friends). None of them ever voiced incidents of wolf problems. I hung with higher-ups in national parks, ranchers, developers, photographers, and on and on and none of them mentioned any wolf problems, either. I read the papers when I could get a connection. No wolf problems. I spe nt many nights in heavy wolf territory, and never encountered a problem with wolves. I had the flu for ten days, and hike din heavy wolf territory, looking like I was about to die, and was never approached by wolves.

          The hysteria is manufactured by the ag industry, outfitters, and unethical hunters.

          • timz says:

            I live in wolf country, have heard and seen them within a few hundred yards from my house, never had any problem with one. Sadly since the slaughter began it’s been two years since that has happened.

            • Immer Treue says:


              That makes two if us. I’ve seen them passing through less than 50 yards from the cabin door…

              That said, there are folks up here who have lost dogs to wolves, and are hurt for their loss, but chalk it up to living in wolf country. There are other who lost dogs that have lead the charge for delisting in MN.

              A diagonal that cuts across about the central portion of the state southeast to northwest is a transition from forest to open land and farms. This is the swatch where most conflict lies in MN. And, as WM said, even if you have no wolf conflict, there may be additional costs of added fencing, dogs and hired help. That is not a positive in regard to the presence of wolves to that farmer.

              • timz says:

                Immer you may correct me if I’m wrong, I grew up in MN and lived over half of my life there and rarely heard of any wolf conflicts. Most of the wolves live in the northern part of the state well away from farms and ranching. In all my time in the woods there I never saw a cow or sheep roaming the forest like I do here in Idaho.

              • Immer Treue says:


                Over the years wolves have expanded in a southwesterly direction and are in the transition territory of forest to open area/farms. I’ve seen the DNR and WS maps of where most of the wolf problems exist, and it is in this transition area.

                Then you still have the only good wolf is the dead wolf folks throughout.

              • timz says:

                Immer, I left in 1987 and at that time the Hinckley area was as far south wolves were seen. There moving south was inevitable I suppose.

          • Barb Rupers says:

            Interesting non-encounters! Glad you survived the ordeal of having the flu.

  72. aves says:

    Skunks and social media…and yogurt:


    Though primarily focused on California, the Rewild blog is an excellent blog that covers a very wide variety of conservation issues.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      This is one of my biggest concerns – why are we incapable of disposing of our trash properly? I just can’t understand it. Plus, trash, especially petroleum based plastics, are a huge untapped energy source.

    • Barb Rupers says:

      I don’t buy Yoplait yogurt because their recyclable containers don’t stack. I wrote to the company and also sent them the video to show some of the results of the inverted cone shape.

  73. Nancy says:

    The “hits” just keep on coming – Idaho’s latest war wildlife, once again ignoring the real reasons for sage grouse declines.


    • Yvette says:

      So this is about the Sage Grouse? Right.

      It is sickening how Idaho’s solution for all conservation/wildlife issues is to shoot them into oblivion.

    • Immer Treue says:

      “Ravens, carrion birds often popularly depicted as omens of death or misfortune, will be killed by baiting them with poisoned chicken eggs, shooting them and destroying a number of their eggs and nests, Idaho wildlife managers said.”

      …’Often popularly depicted as omens of death or misfortune’…

      Odd that a certain intelligent four legged mammal and this large intelligent bird are/can be so stereotyped.

      • Nancy says:


        There are those that appreciate just be able to see wildlife and then there are those that have no problem seeing wildlife and then wasting it.


        “There is nothing quite so dead as a self-centered man-a man who holds himself up as a self-made success, and measures himself by himself and is pleased with the result”

        Even worse, is the self-centered man with a following (re: comments below the video)

        • Louise Kane says:

          I looked at the link briefly Nancy but could not watch the video. It appears that the wolves are killed and that bastard says he shot high. These are the kinds of images that haunt…I have such a hard time suppressing rage. You see the image of the wolves together doing no harm and some crazy son of a bitch that likes to kill is allowed to shoot them for no reason. That this is legal makes me crazy. I want to believe that sanity and humane people will prevail although its harder every day. I get e mails about hundreds of killing contests, see the too numerous to count websites like the one you posted and its easy to get discouraged. The comments on the page are so base, so corrupt. Why do people that like to kill for fun take such joy in it, why do they think they have achieved something worthwhile when they all they have done is to destroy and show themselves to be small, stupid, mean and worthless.

          • Nancy says:

            The video was 4 minutes long Louise and this guy set the stage well. Probably knew the pack traveded the area. Killed another animal for bait? Found a comfortable bluff to film from and waited for the best shot.

            You could tell atleast a couple of these wolves were uncomfortable with the setting, pacing around, trying to pick up clues for their unrest. Too bad the ravens couldn’t talk.

            While you and I would of been thrilled just to sit and observe this scene, this guy was probably already anticipating the acclaim he would be getting from his online hunting buddies.

          • Ida Lupines says:

            I don’t watch these things anymore; most of them are probably bullshit anyway. They are losing their impact. I don’t feel rage, I feel nothing for these vile little men, not even pity. Whoever it was only got four comments.

            • Louise Kane says:

              I think there is value in documenting these disgusting events, so that when people claim they are isolated instances there is some tangible evidence to refute that claim. Painful and disturbing as it is to do so. I have a website started to do just that. I’m tired of hearing that its not the norm or that these are the extremists or that it only happens so often. People randomly kill wild predators constantly and frequently with increasingly sadistic methods and in increasing numbers. I’ve been sent two face book pages in the last week or so of men that have killed hundreds of wild animals, for fun.

              • Ida Lupine says:

                I can’t bring myself to watch anymore, but I am still disgusted by these people. But what’s worse is that our leadership allows it, and even encourages it, that’s who I’m most disappointed with.

      • Louise Kane says:

        The USFW service seems like they have lost their way for a long time now. 12th in a list of 16th as concerns for the sage grouse. A description of the age grouse and its unique posturing but no description of the intelligence and beauty of the raven. I love seeing them together cackling and strutting about fearless enough to chase away hawks and to stand their ground. I often thing of them as in a convention the way they gather and chatter. I hate to think of them poisoned like this. Humans are so screwed up sometimes. Is there every any good news?

    • Ida Lupines says:

      And calling upon ancient beliefs to justify the killing, with poison too – how are they going to prevent it from poisoning the environment and the risk to other wildlife?

      But the article also does provide the real reason for not listing the sage grouse, the real crux of the matter:

      Listing could hamper activities like the development of new oil and gas fields, wind farms, utility lines and roads. It also might result in restrictions on ranchers with permits to graze livestock on public lands where sage-grouse dwell.

      The whole world is headed back decades – why?

    • Ida Lupines says:

      The project is being developed by the state legislature (the real omens of death and misfortune!). Any science to back it up? Sigh. Back to court, again.

    • Kathleen says:

      “Ravens are protected by federal law, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently granted Idaho a permit to kill 4,000…”

      The ire should be directed at FWS, just as it should have been directed at the Forest Svc. in the Frank Church wolf killing.

      From a 2012 article: “Killing ravens to save sage grouse” in Nevada:

      “When the Fish and Wildlife service prioritized threats to sage grouse, it listed predator control as number 12…”


  74. Ida Lupines says:

    Louise said:

    These projects don’t just help recovering salmon populations they bolster other species and habitats.

    Yes. And this provides benefits to humans as well, as salmon are a food source. I don’t buy the concern for other species argument either(we can see that ‘concern’ with the sage grouse), and shortsighted concerns about overspending.

  75. WM says:

    Do Columbia River salmon have a future above impassable Grand Coulee Dam? The tribes and Canada might like that, and maybe so would the salmon. Can it be done?


    • Ida Lupines says:

      Wow! Great news.

    • rork says:

      Look at a map to see how huge the slack water above Grand Coulee is (Lake Roosevelt). It would be cool to see fish passage, but getting smolts from tributaries on high to get down all the impoundments is critical and not easy, harder than getting fish to go up a fish ladder. I pretty much can’t imagine smolts getting down from Kootenai like they used to when aided by 10 mph currents in some of that reach, that is now .5 mph at best I figure, and it’s a long, long, way. (Yes, I know about barging smolts downstream.) Access to some closer tributaries might yield runs though. The Spokane has impassible falls though.

  76. Ida Lupines says:

    Speaking of salmon and wolves (and ancient symbolism), this is something humans have in common, whether European or Native American. It’s lovely, I think:


  77. Louise Kane says:


    still trying to see my next sighting. I hike every day into some really cool places where I see no people and am far into the woods. Where did I see the snowy owl I saw last week, on one of the most crowded (although empty now) beach areas on Cape Cod. West Dennis Beach. It was bizarre, everyone said that three of them were living in this area and I thought it was unlikely but there they were. I am also hearing they are on a barrier beach off the coast, I’m hoping to sight one there before they leave. I think the reason the owls might be staying close to the beach in Dennis is the black ducks in the marsh area adjacent to the parking area. Apparently they like to eat black ducks. They are one tough bird. As I was leaving the spot I could see the owl from, I heard the snowy owl hiss like a cat at a woman who got too close, and it never ruffled a feather just blinked and looked like it was thinking, just try me lady. Very cool bird

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Their eyes remind me of a cat’s also. There’s a lot of black ducks and other water fowl where I saw one too. What a beauty!

    • aves says:

      They are amazing birds. I only managed to see 1 this winter, my first sighting ever, on a Delaware beach. I struck out on all my other searches along the DE/MD/VA coastlines and they seem to have headed back home. They seem to love airports and beaches, likely due to the prey, as you mentioned, but also their similarity to the wide open tundra they’re used to on their breeding grounds.

      • Louise Kane says:

        I’ve heard during the irruption at least one has even been spotted in Florida. It will be a long way back! Are there many reported in Delaware?

  78. Louise Kane says:


    That good news I was wishing for just minutes earlier

    • aves says:

      That is good news, though I’d favor a complete ban. More and more people are catching on to the dangers of these types of poisons, though it will be an uphill battle (isn’t it always?) to fully confront the scope of the problem.


  79. Nancy says:

    “It has been costing a lot of people across the state economic development, Powell said”


  80. aves says:

    Red wolves just can’t get a break, another one has been shot in NC:


    I am convinced this is an act of a disgusting few, who see the state’s recklessly allowing the night hunting of coyotes as the chance to kill not just red wolves, but the entire program.

  81. Ida Lupines says:

    Well, we certainly know where this Administration’s priorities lie:


  82. Nancy says:

    Wildlife once again taking the backseat to human growth &greed:

    “This road that we’d be constructing is about 4,800 feet so not too substantial but it would save probably about 12 to 15 minutes, 20 to 25 miles of driving depending upon where everybody is coming from.”


    “Direct and Indirect Effects may occur, and may have the potential to adversely affect big game. Displacement of big game would occur during harvest of trees associated with road construction. Open road density is above Fish, Wildlife, and Parks goal of 1 mile of road per square mile of habitat. Nearly one mile of new road would be constructed, which would increase open road density. The proposed action area is elk, deer, and moose winter range (Figure 3). The proposed open road with potentially heavy traffic may permanently displace big game from winter range”


    • Elk375 says:

      Nancy did you realize before the silver panic of 1893 that there were thousands of people living on Rumsey Road. There was a hospital, stamp mill, mine, commercial establishments, schools and churches. I did not. I was appraising mining claims for a court case and I checked with the Phillipsburg Historical society. It was amazing what was in the area in those days.

      Does it really matter? The entire area is either a mining claim or has been subdivided into 10 and 20 acre tracts.

      • Nancy says:

        Elk – you forget I live in an area that had a “hey day” once (Elkhorn Mines had a population of 5,000 before it played out) Phillipsburg actually has the same dynamics – a good part of the population over 50 (probably many are retirees with second homes and a lot of out of staters with vacation homes on 5-10 acre plots) Surrounded by ranchland & public lands.

        Even adding additional runs to the local ski hill here did little to increase the interest. A couple of businesses barely get by and one even closes for the winter. Its all about the weather and we’ve had some pretty poor years here lately, this winter being an exception.

        “Does it really matter?”
        I believe it will matter to the wildlife with the construction of a new road and the possibility of increased traffic in the winter.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Who cares about traffic accidents with wildlife or displacing wildlife from their habitat, all to save 12-15 minutes of driving time? smh Sometimes I think gov’t agencies try to be deliberately callous. Can they put in an overpass for the wildlife to use? Nope. Too expensive.

  83. aves says:

    Emotion trumps science when it comes to feral cats:


    • Ida Lupines says:

      But yet, we must get rid of those mute swans, and bison!

      The things we do make absolutely no sense at all.

      And what about feral dogs? I was reading an article about that in the Southwest. It’s a good thing that they have those cages at the school bus stops!

      • JB says:

        “But yet, we must get rid of those mute swans, and bison!”

        Can you say, “false equivalence”?

    • Ida Lupines says:

      We should try to control our pets’ reproduction by spay and neuter, and limit indiscriminant breeders, and become more responsible pet owners, before it gets to the point of having to destroy unwanted pets. Not everyone should be able to have a cat or dog, if they aren’t capable of taking care of them. It’s terribly sad, because we’ve let it become too late. It is unbelievable the amount of unwanted cats and dogs who are destroyed every year.

      • JB says:

        “We should try to control our pets’ reproduction by spay and neuter, and limit indiscriminant breeders, and become more responsible pet owners, before it gets to the point of having to destroy unwanted pets.”

        Yes we should–and we’ve been saying this for 30 years (ask Bob Barker). When do we stop pretending that it’s a perfect world and people will do what they should do, and start acknowledging that too many people are doing what they SHOULDN’T do and take actions to correct their misdeeds?

        • Mark L says:

          Amen to that, and let’s leave the coyotes alone…they are showing us an inevitability. I.e. ‘you must be THIS tough to make it in the wild here’

          they’ve set a minimum level for being in the wild…let’s follow it.

        • Ida Lupine says:

          I don’t know that there’s much action we can take – our society in America is based on the freedom to do whatever we want, with increasingly less and less responsibility.

          Believe me, I’m the last person who would think it is a perfect world.

        • Immer Treue says:

          Read something somewhere attributed to Winston Churchill. Goes something like Americans get it right, after exhausting all other means of doing so.

  84. Ida Lupine says:

    Idaho just keeps creeping ahead – as JB said, as far as they dare before hopefully USF&W steps in. If they ever do:


    • Yvette says:

      …and, it looks like USFWS isn’t going to do much for wolves under the current administration.

      Maybe ID did themselves a little damage with the severe Ag-gag law.

  85. Ida Lupine says:

    The fewest number of wolves taken was one in Unit 110, the North Fork of the Flathead, adjacent to Glacier National Park. Unit 110 has a two-wolf quota in deference to the Park.

    How magnanimous of them.


    • Ida Lupine says:

      Yay! You know, hunting is one thing, but killing contests need to be gotten rid of.

  86. Louise Kane says:


    I’ve posted a link to some images I’ve been sorting through from prior trips. These are from Flaming Gorge and also various areas in Montana. My husband took them on a rafting and hiking trip taken with a good friend who lives in Missoula and is also a dedicated rafter. I was thinking some of you might enjoy. Don’t worry none of this work is for our commercial photography just fun stuff. trout is catch and release with fly.

  87. WM says:

    A complex set of wildlife management (and legal) issues involving WA elk on private property (eating private grass intended for the owner’s cattle), a use of the property by an individual Yakama Indian hunter (not the tribe as a whole), elk trampling ah historic sacred Yakama Tribal burial ground, and a lawsuit filed in tribal court against the state of WA, to see if it can assert jurisdiction over the case.

    Almost strikes me of the kind of thing one might see on an Indian law or natural resources class law school exam (and if the claimants threw in a claim for cattle/elk killed by either state/federally protected/managed wolves it would be even more interesting – absent a compensation damages program of sorts).


    • bret says:

      I saw that article as well WM, and it brings up many issues, none of them easily resolved.

    • Nancy says:

      One or two people on horseback could make an impact on these elk – its called hazing and its done here in Montana. Wonder why WA Fish & Game hasn’t employed that tactic, or the owner of the land?

      • WM says:

        Maybe the landowner doesn’t want horse tracks in the soft ground either. And, the state is already using air-cannons to scare the elk off. I have seen this same phenomenon in fruit orchards to the west of Yakima (elk hanging out eating the grasses and new buds off trees). The problem is there is no winter range, even into Spring, and hunger can be a powerful motivator.

        This whole thing is kind of interesting, since the elk are maybe doing what they have done for hundreds (thousands?) of years. They are going where the feed is – grasses at lower elevations. Probably did this even before the Yakamas and other tribes showed up to utilize the land for their regional gathering site. This will have an interesting etiology as the story is told in court. Who came first the elk or the Indians?

        Does the WDFW have a duty to fence the elk out of this old gal’s property? And, who is going to tell them this, a tribal court. Most tribal courts are not equipped to deal with complex problems like this, and I believe the Yakamas are no exception, especially since this is off-reservation, but involving a historic hunting/gathering ground, now “owned” in fee simple by a non-Indian who wants something done. It will be very interesting to see what ultimate solutions are sought in which court.

        Just speculation, but I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if all of this is posturing to see if the State or some group like RMEF (which will in turn give it to the state) will buy her out, and she just wants to puff up the value of the property for a nice profit. This is not that different on one level than bison leaving YNP going out on to the adjacent private lands where the grass is greener this time of year.

  88. Mark L says:

    So what happens when you slam on the brakes for the idiot deer (or elk!) on the way home? It (the rifle) ends up in the floor space anyway…i.e. Out of reach…and damn, hope that safety was on. So nature (or physics) is actually setting a precedent for you. Hopefully you’re not texting too, right? Could get complicated.

    • Jake Jenson says:

      I bet he means the rifle barrel muzzle is on the floorboard and the rifle is leaning on the seat with the stock against the backrest. I bet he either removes the shell from the breach and pushes it into the magazine sliding the bolt back against the breach. That be safer than leaving a loaded rifle on safety. Can you actually text over there in those forests? Cell phones don’t work here in these forests. I don’t have what I call a pocket TV. Funniest thing I’ve ever seen. Everyone is walking around over here with their face stuck in those pocket TVs. {I-pods}.

  89. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Wolf hunt in France

    “And help was at hand for the wolves: just as the trackers entered the final furlong, at last approaching the stationary marksmen’s line of fire, the hunt was abruptly cut short by furious ramblers demanding to know why their Sunday stroll had suddenly taken them into a war zone. As tempers flared and the guns fell silent, the farmers railed against “tourists” whose right to roam had foiled their hunt.”

    • Ida Lupines says:

      I see this happening with ‘ramblers’ more and more frequently. 🙂

    • WM says:

      ++ “Over there just behind that hill on January 5, four wolves attacked my flock and there was nothing I could do about it. I had no gun on me,” said the young farmer who suffered eight attacks last year killing scores of animals and has lost 18 in the past month.

      “I saw one running off with one of my lambs in its jaws. Two more sheep lay dead. I felt only rage. The wolf is a threat to my way of life and my future.” ++

      And apparently we have anecdotal evidence of what could have happened historically all across Europe as sheep herders or other rural farmers interacted with wolves (in far greater numbers 100-200 years ago), which gives rise to the unjustified hatred and the unfair portrayal of wolves in fairytales, which some wolf advocates say are a bunch of bunk.

      So, which is it they say in these instances, “life imitates art,” or “art imitates life”?

      • Ida Lupines says:

        🙂 yes.

      • Peter Kiermeir says:

        „And apparently we have anecdotal evidence of what could have happened historically all across Europe as sheep herders or other rural farmers interacted with wolves (in far greater numbers 100-200 years ago), which gives rise to the unjustified hatred and the unfair portrayal of wolves in fairytales, which some wolf advocates say are a bunch of bunk.”

        Not sure if this is a true mirror image of how it once was. Down in the times of our history the sheep herders certainly had no electrified wire fences. But, they had their protective measures. The art of protecting herds with dogs is not a novelty from the 21st century but evolved from hundreds of years ago. Further, labour was extremely cheap. They had guards out there with their herds – albeit often only children.

        The subtle difference is, that our modern farmers over here in France do not deploy herd protection measures at all. No electric fences, no dogs! Why should they? They own rifles anyway and that´s their way of life: shoot ´em! Fences and dogs are expensive (from a farmers point of view). They hunt anyway. So while being out for wild boar a wolf or two can easily be killed as a by-catch. And, it´s cheaper to collect subsidies for wolf losses than to invest in protective measures.

    • Mareks Vilkins says:

      French farmers try to keep the wolves from their door


      “It is estimated that 100,000 sheep a year are killed by wild or stray dogs in France – 20 times as many as are killed by wolves,”

    • Mareks Vilkins says:


      in January 5 French students arrived in Latvia for 3 week field work to get practical / hands-on knowledge how wolf monitoring works here – sounds fantastic.

      They were mentored by Janis Ozolins.

    • Ida Lupines says:

      Five years is how long they think it will take.

      • jon says:

        That is troubling. A big game manager admitting his agency wants only 150 wolves in Idaho. Idaho wolves will be back on the endangered species list before you know it. People on here were right when they were saying Idaho will drive the wolf to extermination once again.

        • Cobra1 says:

          I seriously doubt you’ll see wolves on the list anytime soon unless poisons were used.
          Idaho is big country and it would very easy to hide 150 wolves in North Idaho alone not counting the rest of the state.

  90. Mark L says:

    Yep. My teenager laughs at my phone with a real keyboard…says it wastes space and time. A lot of people in the south have dropped their land lines and just keep cell service, which means towers on every hilltop. Convenient but creepy…just another leash.

    • WM says:

      I keep hoping cell phone companies will do something cosmetic to reduce the visual effect of their ugly, shiney, symmetrical steel towers. Wouldn’t be that expensive to make them look like a tree in many places, with neutral colors and some foliage shapes.

      • Peter Kiermeir says:

        In Namibia they are camouflaged as false palm trees! Not so easy to detect with some lighting conditions.

      • Mark L says:

        Kind of a double edged sword; along rivers, there are lots of cell towers, which is convenient while fishing or boating, and GREAT for the osprey, but just look so out of place. Heck, along the Tennessee river the cell towers already look like dead trees at the top anyway…nests in every one of them. Guess there’s a decent trade off for wildlife.

        • Ida Lupines says:

          🙂 The osprey in my neck of the woods have come back too. And the hawks and peregrine falcons love to nest at the tops of skyscrapers (Pale Male and his generations in NYC). Talk about adaptability!

          • Ida Lupines says:

            For those who may not be familiar:

            Pale Male

            • Sid says:

              I see Redtailed Hawks all the time in downtown San Francisco at first you don’t expect to see them so you’re never looking up but once you spot one you see them often.

      • aves says:

        They have been doing it in some places. Some look better than others:


  91. Nancy says:

    Harley – great webcam. The Osprey haven’t arrived yet but should be soon.


  92. WM says:

    Comprehensive recon level review of what happens if Keystone XL Pipeline is not built. The resource WILL be extracted. That is a near certainty. The question boils down to, who gets the oil?


  93. Eric T. says:

    The Swigerts claim to have killed the wolf that they think killed their colt as chronicled on the Idaho for Wildlife site.


    • Nancy says:

      Course F&G won’t confirm it was the same wolf, because the wolf that supposedly killed Swigert’s colt and attacked their dogs, was black. But then again, any wolf will do when you’re bent on revenge.

      Mr. S kills the wolf but Mrs. S, drives the point home – rifle in hand, next to a dead wolf. Got to love the over the top theatrics here folks 🙂

      • Ida Lupines says:

        I was going to ask that, how do they know it was the same wolf?

        And how long until the next bullshit story from the Swillgerts? This is at least the second one I know of.

    • Yvette says:

      Everything about the Swigert’s story seems to be just that: A story.

      The colt was a mile from the house—oh, no he wasn’t. He was in the corral that was next to the house. Then big, bad wolf attacked the guard dogs—-in their crates? Even “Happy” the cute little coyote didn’t alert the Swigerts to the presence of the big, bad wolf. Oh my, oh my, oh my, what happened to Happy? Maybe they confused him with him ‘Sleepy’.

      Next, the IDFG, Mr. Grimms’ Wildlife manager SWAT teams, professional wolfers, and damned near the entire National Guard could not locate this huge, big, bad wolf. Mr. Grimms wrung his hands and scratched his head and said, “oh no, oh no, the Swigerts’ made us look like fools. We spent this money and have these tools, but we can’t find this big, bad wolf. We know he terrorized these poor little pigs!—-umm people, I meant people.

      The public gathered around their blogs and news and tugged the hairs on their chinny, chin, chins while suspicions brewed. “It is amazing how all those wildlife managers and; all those guns, and planes, and GPS, and GIS, and high tech equipment, could not find this big—ole—-bad wolf”. Sigh.

      But do not be afraid. Mr. Swigert, he huffed and he puffed; and he huffed and he puffed and found that big, bad wolf and then he BLEW HIM AWAY!

      Now the Swigerts can live happily ever after—-or not.

      Previously in the Swigert’s lives they had the little colt’s sire killed by an elk, and another horse killed by a rattlesnake bite. Hmm, no wars on elk? No war rattlesnakes? Oh my. I wonder why? Could it be this little colt that was so loved, and so cute, and so expensive was INSURED? Oh, that’s not true. We love our colt, yes we do.

      I think the Swigert’s are grifters. Wolf grifters. Before a wolf’s tail/tale can go Whoosh-in-the-wind, the Swigert’s have sucked everybody in.

      The Swigert’s story belongs in faerie tales.

  94. Louise Kane says:


    revenge killing, he says this is wolf that killed the colt and he could tell by the unique track!

  95. Rita k Sharpe says:

    Yes I agree ,Yvette,Wolf grifters. I better be careful going to grandma’s house.

  96. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Global spotlight on British Columbia grizzly bear kill
    “Scientists concerned over hunting of grizzly bears in British Columbia have taken their case to the journal Nature, claiming the province is increasing killing opportunities without having any precise fix on the bear population.”


March 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