Bitterbrush, arrowleaf balsamroot and great mule deer country. Copyright Ralph Maughan

Bitterbrush, sagebrush, arrowleaf balsamroot and great mule deer country. Copyright Ralph Maughan

It is time to create a new page of “Interesting Wildlife News.”     Please put your wildlife news in the comments below. Do not post copyrighted material, and here is the link to the “old” news of April 18, 2015.


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.

515 Responses to Do you have interesting wildlife news? May 11, 2015 edition

  1. Mareks Vilkins says:

    Massive census to record Amur tiger numbers takes place in the Far East

  2. Ida Lupine says:

    Fingers crossed that there’s improvement!!!!

    • Ralph Maughan says:

      Thank you for the link, Ethan. We have written several stories about this new kind of ag gag law.

  3. Ralph Maughan says:

    The Wyoming law that criminalizes data gathering done to give to state or federal government was meant solely to deter the Western Watersheds Project. Debate records and coverage by the media make that perfectly clear.

    This violates the U.S. Constitution in a number of instances, but in particular free speech. So does Idaho’s ag-gag law that was passed in 2014 and recently seemed to draw the ire of federal judge Lin Winmill in a Boise hearing. Winmill did say it would take him some time to rule.

    Despite the huge overreach of the law in Idaho, no one has been prosecuted under the law. That means to me the law was intended to chill, to deter the examination of agriculture in Idaho, not to prosecute.

    In Wyoming, it was aimed not just at WWP, but its Wyoming employee, Jonathan Ratner. I told Ratner he must be doing something good when he got a corrupt state government to pass a law against him.

    • Yvette says:

      The overreach of the WY law is just scary. On many levels in our country I’m starting to feel like some are trying to build the Berlin Wall.

      I do have a couple of questions. The first being how is the WY DEQ staying in compliance with state water quality standards? How are they approaching the 303d list of streams not meeting numeric criteria for a specified pollutant? The next question is what role has Region 8 EPA WQS Division played in the approach of WY’s new law on collection of citizen data, and if there are streams not meeting standards if the state isn’t listing those streams is EPA allowing this?

    • Louise Kane says:

      gives you an inkling of how far out there these western states are and some damn good reasons for fighting state acquisition of any federal lands.

      Western Watersheds thank you for the work you do to illuminate the point source pollution issues related to the livestock industry.

    • WM says:

      WY has its own spin on the alleged “ag gag law,” which its governor says it is not. He says the focus is on trespassing, and ultimately, if you look at it close enough, a Constitutional issue of an “illegal search” by a private citizen trespassing on private property then turning the data over to a public agency for enforcement of possibly criminal conduct. This kind of law presents a very wide range of legal issues, even including deterring industrial espionage, in which someone unauthorized to come on your property takes pictures of perhaps proprietary processes and steals the technology for their own financial gain.

      • Cody Coyote says:

        As much as I despise the Wyoming ” Data Trespass” law, the Slate article gets its interpretation only half right. SF0012 as written and passed applies only to incursions onto/thru private land outside City limits. It does not apply to state or federal lands. Anyone who wants to do citizen science or take samples from public lands is still free to proceed if they do not trespass or transgress private property. The Slate author didn’t pick up on that part. In fact, exisiting Wyoming law concerning Trespass as legally defined( both simple and malicious ) already adequately covered what this Ag Gag Law made such a grunt over.

        But – further down in the SF0012 law are two very disturbing clauses that prohibit the use of any evidence gathered if trespass occurred. It nulls and voids the data , no matter how accurate or pertinent that data is. It disallows it as evidence, and criminalizes any attempt to use it, pretty much anywhere in an official or judicial capacity. In fact, it specifically calls for the expungement of said data.

        That’s the part I have severe Constitutional issue with…. throwing the data baby out with the trespass bathwater. Data is data; truth is truth. It is free speech and it is protected—except in Wyoming when it’s not.

        – here’s the relevant text of the law :
        No resource data collected in violation of
        this section is admissible in evidence in any civil, criminal or
        administrative proceeding, other than a prosecution
        for violation of this section or a civil action against the
        Resource data collected in violation of this section in the possession of any governmental entity as defined by W.S. 1-39-
        103(a)(i) shall be expunged by the entity from all files and data bases, and it shall not be considered in determining any agency action


        Make your own case.

        Mine is: Wyoming once again proves it is anti-science anti-enviro and the foundations of its statehouse are firmly rooted in the 19th century. Once again our dim bulb citizen legislators have cow-towwed to the Stockgrowers and their ilk by writing them some special rules.

        As Ralph noted, the Wyoming folly was a direct precipitate of what already occurred in Idaho, yet to date not a single prosecution has occurred there. So what’s the point of it all ?

        • WM says:


          So are you saying Constitutional “free speech,” trumps “illegal search and seizure” and private property rights?

          A law enforcement officer cannot come on private property to gather things {illegal search – unless there is probable cause or a valid search warrant signed by a judge who will ask questions about why and what they collect) to do the things you want a private citizen to do without any of these restrictions. In some states a public health officer can come on private property without probable cause, and often without a judge issued warrant. It’s complicated.

        • WM says:

          ++So what’s the point of it all ?++

          Deterrence effect?

        • Ed Loosli says:

          I think the case that started this new ag-gag law involving Western Watersheds Project, took place on PUBLIC LAND. The state said that because of the checker-board land ownership between federal and private lands, the data collector must have crossed (trespassed) on private land to get to the public land. No actual evidence was offered that this was the case.

    • Elk375 says:

      Turn 62 and one gets a lifetime pass for $10.00. That is not the best deal going as your years are statistically numbered.

    • Ed Loosli says:

      What a wonderful bargain we have…. In Kenya and Tanzania, entry fees for their national parks, reserves and community-conservancies, range from about $40 to $100 Per Person Per Day – and there are extra fees for the vehicle.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        And I’d gladly pay it, and then some. Look at what you’re getting!

    • Cody Coyote says:

      Yes, my gateway community of Cody and its tourist moguls are whining loudly about his lurch upwards in Yellowstone gate fees. Why , hopw dare they ! All the way up to $ 30 for three days in Y-stone and a separate similar fee if you visit its conjoined twin Grand Teton. That’s highway robbery and p[unitive fee , right ?

      I introduce Exhibit A: the country rock band The Eagles is playing at the Metra in Billings Montana on June 2. The cheapest ticket price available today for that 3-hour show is in the upper bleachers for a mere $ 115.00. The best seats, in the orchestra pit directly in front of the stage, are $ 1150.00 ( ten times as much , equivalent to 350 passes into Yellowstone for a total of 1050 days visitation ).

      Exhibit B: all day ticket to Disneyland , admit one Adult, is presently $ 92.00

      • Elk375 says:

        A one day ski pass at Jackson Hole or Sun Valley is in excess of $100 a day and a day pass at Red Lodge is in excess of $50. I do not golf but green fees on mediocre courses are in excess of $30. The Golden Eagle Pass is $80 and that is good for one year everywhere in the National Park Service.

      • sleepy says:

        Big difference between Yellowstone and Disneyworld–we own Yellowstone and we don’t own Disneyworld.

        I have nothing against reasonable fees for park admission, but imho to use third world nations like Kenya as a basis of comparison–“hey, compared to Tanzania, we’re pretty good”–doesn’t mean much to me.

        Beginning with Clinton, financial support shifted from general tax revenues to user fees, and continued with BushObama. It’s a market based approach favored by both dems and repubs and certainly by big business.

        Like market rationales in the past, it ends up destroying the commons. The more “users” pay, the more influence special interests will have. Charge a $500/yr user fee for mountain bikes in Yellowstone?

        Because markets.

  4. Ida Lupine says:

    It’s still the best deal going! 🙂

  5. Ida Lupine says:

    RCMP and conservation officers confirmed that O’Connor’s injuries were consistent with a black bear attack. A 300-pound bear, believed to be responsible for the attack, was shot to death by a Mountie. A lone wolf that had also been at the scene was also killed.

    I just love (not) the fact that they just shot the wolf for being there. 🙁 Now I feel even worse about that mother and cubs trying to negotiate her way across the bridge in Yellowstone. People can never be wrong.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Jeez – if I’m ever out in wildlife country and something happens to me, I’m pinning a note/waiver to my jacket “Please Do Not Kill Grizzly/Wolf/Mountain Lion. I Accept All Risk”. When you go to these areas, people shouldn’t be surprised that there is danger. The poor wolf was shot just for being a wolf.

    • Susan Armstrong says:

      After this gruesome tragedy, Jami Wallace, the young man’s fiancee, shows an amazingly generous attitude toward wild predators. Ms. Wallace seems to realize the bear was not a responsible agent as a human murderer would be. This was a piece of extreme bad luck in the face of natural forces, like being killed by lightning or a rockfall – a case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

      HuffPost: “A lone wolf that had also been at the scene was also killed because at the time, officers didn’t know what had caused O’Connor’s death.”

      The National Post reported: “A wolf was also shot by officers earlier at the scene, as they were unsure what kind of animal had killed O’Connor. They later spotted the bear.”

      In retrospect it was likely a needless killing – sadly they didn’t know that at the time.

      (2 days before, Ms. Wallace had posted a video to FB of a wolf sniffing around the campsite while they were inside the motorhome. I haven’t seen it but I am guessing that the wolf was hoping to find something edible the latest set of campers had left around.)

  6. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Alaska’s Wolves Face Hunter-Driven Decline, Admits Park Officials
    For five years now, there has been a notable decline in the number of wolf sightings in Denali National Park and Preserve. Now a new report from the National Park Service (NPS) is suggesting that wolf hunting could be to blame, as there are few limitations on when a wolf can be killed by a hunter in the Alaskan wilderness.

  7. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Asiatic lions face danger in ‘overcrowded’ Gir, some of them need relocation
    I must admit that for a long time I was not aware, that there are indeed Lions in India. First time I became aware was when I got hold on a book about the Asiatic Lion in a Mumbay book shop.
    Seems the number of those Asiatic Lions has significantly grown over the last years.
    Now they face a habitat problem – the Gir Region is to small for this fast growing population

  8. Mareks Vilkins says:

    change is possible, after all

    Hoppe, Cats Meat Seller, London, 1933

    fresh daily

    • Mareks Vilkins says:

      Long time Minnesota wolf expert David Mech, keynote speaker by Isle Royale scientist Rolf Peterson, Dr. Tim Van Deelen from the University of Wisconsin, current large carnivore specialist for the DNR Dave MacFarland, along with retired wolf professionals Adrian Weydeven and Dick Thiel. Other wildlife managers from Michigan, Minnesota and the Province of Ontario provided presentations to attendees as well.

    • Ed Loosli says:

      Thanks Mareks:
      At least the researchers are telling us who the real killers are:

      “In both study areas, humans were the largest cause of adult deer mortality. In the north, hunting accounted for 43% (+ 8% poaching) of all deer deaths-or double all remaining factors. Starvation accounted for 9%, coyotes 8%, wolves 7% and road kill at 6%. The farmland zone, 53% of deer kills were attributed to hunting, followed by deer/car collisions at 17%, starvation 4%, coyote 2%.”

      • Harley says:

        I’m wondering how hunting can attribute more than wolves or coyotes since there is a season that deer can be hunted yet coyotes and wolves hunt year round? Doesn’t that seem kinda backwards? I don’t know, I read that and that’s what popped into my head. I could be wrong!

        • Ed Loosli says:

          It makes sense once you realize that wolves and coyotes do not kill many deer in relation to the huge numbers killed by hunters, which is why human predation on deer is the main factor.

        • Immer Treue says:

          MN wolves kill on average 60,000 deer peryear. Hunters, this year < 150,000 during archery, rifle, and black powder seasons. This stretches from ~ mid Spetember to mid December. During the 2000's hunter successes where well over 200,000 per year, as we had a succession of mild winters and increased habitat due to the 1999 blowdown, prescribed burns in concert with mild winters.

          Manage for high deer yield, and there will be more wolves, killing more deer. Moose have also suffered due to this management technique. More deer, more wolves, more predation on moose, plus Brainworm and liver flukes from deer.

        • Barb Rupers says:

          Compare the number of wolves killing deer out of necessity to stay alive versus the number of hunters doing the same for sport. How many hunters do you feel could not survive the year without the deer they kill?

  9. Ida Lupine says:

    For those of you who have Pivot television station:

  10. monty says:

    QUESTION: I have read that 90% of the moose population in Minnesota has declined due to climate warming and the abundance of ticks that are thriving in warm weather. The ticks are eating the moose alive. This is also true for parts of Canada. Would the ticks, also, be killing other mammals? And is this a fate for other areas? In the southern part of US, deer and other mammals cope with ticks. Are the ticks in the northern colder regions different from those found in the south?

    • TC says:

      Dermacentor albipictus, the winter tick. Ghost moose. Keep reading, the information is out there. The tick has a wide geographic distribution, and ghost moose occur sporadically across its range, including in the Rocky Mountains of the US. D. albipictus will parasitize other hosts, but we do not yet recognize it as a cause of significant morbidity/mortality in elk, deer, etc. There are several theories why this is so, none fully substantiated. Moose face many challenges anymore, this is but one.

  11. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Loch Ness Monster? You otter know better, says wildlife expert
    “A WILDLIFE expert claims his snap of an otter proves the animals are a common cause of Nessie sightings.
    The image was was taken by Dr Jonathan Wills and shows three humps in the water similar to many representations of the world-famous Loch Ness Monster.”

  12. Gary Humbard says:

    The point that Mr. Wilkinson was making is that wolves have never had and are not now having devastating effects on livestock and elk. Even when ranchers have confirmed wolf predations they are fully compensated (unlike the ~97% of total animals lost due to natural causes).

    Wolves are an easy target for some politicians to show their constituents they are “working for them”. Instead of spending their time on wolves they should work to solve the countries big problems like reducing the debt, protecting the environment, homeland security, fair trade, law enforcement relations etc. and leave the wolves to the scientists. But that would take hard work and have to be bi-partisan.

    • WM says:


      Wilkinson’s point is not lost on me. However, just how many wolves do NRM or WGL states have to kill each and every year to keep them at the levels they are now (Wilkinson ignores this aspect). And, let us not forget capital costs/O &M costs to livestock producers, effects on hunting if they don’t keep them at current levels in the NRM about 1,800-2,000 (he conveniently ignores that aspect as well). Just remember the research shows a wolf will eat between 12-23 ungulates between October and April, and a few more the rest of the year, many of which are young of the year calves and fawns of deer, elk and pronghorn during that time of year. So, I’m not ready to buy into the idea wolves have no impact, because not all ungulates they eat are old, infirmed or injured, as some who want to convince us they are.

      I am with you, though, in saying Congress (and federal administrative agencies) need to focus on things other than wolves. One way to do that is delist in places where it makes sense – NRM + WA and OR, and WGL states. Nationally, other than those places, ask states if they want some excess from other places. I’d start with CA and CO and the Dakotas- do they want any?

      • Nancy says:

        “However, just how many wolves do NRM or WGL states have to kill each and every year to keep them at the levels they are now (Wilkinson ignores this aspect)”

        Not to butt in here WM but:

        • Ed Loosli says:

          Nancy +1
          Thank you for reminding us that the best science tells us that wolves do NOT need to be “managed” by humans. And neither do coyotes for that matter.

        • WM says:

          The question that begs for an answer is, “What is the numerical difference between wolf social carrying capacity and human tolerance capacity, including impacts to prey base and putative cost to livestock producers?”

          Wolf density, from what I can surmise, will never be allowed to be as high as they can tolerate each other. Conclusion: wolves will be managed for numbers and range by humans. So much for your prognostication, Ed. Probably applies to coyotes too.

          • Yvette says:

            Who is going to manage the humans? We’ve reached our social carrying capacity in some parts of the world, and here in rich America we’ve certainly dwindling our natural resources. Some might even argue we’ve reached our carrying capacity for water in the dry West.

            ‘Punitive cost to livestock producers”? That is a tired argument. Given the facts on livestock lost to poor animal husbandry and lightning strikes, to continue to hammer on about wolves’ financial impact on livestock is like choking on gnat while trying to swallow an elephant.

            • WM says:


              “putative” was the word I used [not punitive]:


              1) commonly accepted or supposed;
              2) assumed to exist or to have existed

              So, again those are capital costs (think fencing of various types and guard animals of various types, turbo-fladry on wire with posts, noise makers); operation and maintenance (stringing fladry maybe daily, repairing fence, digging refuse pits and rounding up the stuff to fill it, more herders/range riders, labor and transportation to and from a remote site to check on stock, feeding and vet care for the guard animals). And, of course, if they make these expenditures and wolf problems grow as populations grow, who absorbs the cost?

              gnat and elephant:

              Phooey! And, quite honestly I don’t expect you to understand this, just like many here who have never run a business of any kind. If a business is running at a net profit margin of say 12% with known risks that have been static for forty years, and cost of dealing with new state/federal sponsored predator policy whittles it down to say 9- 10% (even if only perceived as such), it is not an “old” or “irrelevant” argument to the producer. That is what some here don’t want to understand, or if smart enough to figure it out, dismiss it. And, if it weren’t a real economic issue then Defenders and some other advocacy groups ought to get some experts in a room, do the economic studies and if it is a phantom issue, make it go away.

              It is one thing to do a PR stunt to send a couple college students to follow a herd of sheep (at no cost to the producer) for a couple months. Take a bunch of pictures and talk about how great this is, and no wolf problems. It is quite another to have to pay for this additional labor, dogs and their training, vet bills and whatever for as long as your business continues. Just why would ranchers roll over and take it, if they could make influences otherwise?

              • Nancy says:

                “Take a bunch of pictures and talk about how great this is, and no wolf problems”

                Probably why there were no wolf problems, WM. Someone else picking up the slack and being on site 🙂

                Don’t you find it rather interesting that the price of a cow, has more than doubled in the last decade, yet the rest of us continue to pick up the tab (in taxes) for predator control, here in the west?

                • WM says:

                  So, Nancy, you don’t think producer costs have increased (inflation will account for some) as well? And, don’t get sanctimonious about “picking up predator costs in the West.” The same has been true for agriculture throughout the country as subsidies of various types are also available to almond farmers, rice and corn growers and pig and turkey farmers of the South and Midwest.

                  I just love the distorted conversation of critics talking about the millions of wildlife WS kills every year. Those same mud slingers don’t bother to point out a lot (majority?) are starlings at feedlots, skunks in somebody’s chickencoop or safety risk birds near airports. And, the service may be specifically requested by a federal agency or a co-operator who pays half or more of the cost for removal. Sorry. I’m not buying the horse poopey you are selling today.

                • Nancy says:

                  Not nitpicking here WM. I live in what’s referred to as “wolf country” Been here since wolves were reintroduced back to their native lands, 20 years ago.

                  Can count on half of one hand, the times I’ve actually seen or heard wolves even though I’m surrounded by cattle ranches.

                  The hysteria over wolves back on the landscape, has tampered down over the years by the fact that they are not devastating other wildlife and aren’t causing ranchers to go out of business.

                  IMHO, hunters actually having to go out now and look for prey animals (not as domestic as they once were) and ranchers actually have to be more responsible for their product (livestock) was a good thing.

                  Going to be interesting when grizzles, still on the list, fan out to areas they once roamed and have to deal with that tiny percentage, who dictate how public lands and wilderness areas ought to be run.

              • Ed Loosli says:

                Arguments emphasizing economics for not protecting rare species like the wolf illustrates why keeping them on the Endangered Species Act is so important. The well being of a species is what matters under the ESA, so by law, science rules and economics is not a priority consideration.

                • WM says:


                  Significantly, important words you miss in the ESA -those species which are at “risk of extinction.” Wolves in the NRM and in the WGL are not, and the numbers prove it in spades, including the ones that are killed off every year. Some folks want to make the ESA a predator protection act, which it is not.

                • Ida Lupine says:

                  Totally agree, Ed – that’s the crux of the matter. We still haven’t moved beyond what caused them to become nearly extirpated in the first place. Instead of learning from our past mistakes, we’re doubling down and this is what makes all of this ‘constant gardening’ approach to the environment all the more troubling.

              • Yvette says:

                The 2010 USDA Cattle loss report states there was a total of 3,992,900 cattle lost. 8,100 of those losses were attributed to wolves.

                Only 5.5% is attributed to all predator related losses, of which 3.7% is due to wolves.

                1,055,000 cattle were lost because of respiratory problems. Weather alone was responsible for 489,000 losses.

                Yes, when anyone that continues to yammer on about the big bad wolf being such a menace to cattle when the respiratory problems kill 130 times more than wolves then the elephant/gnat meme is a perfect description.

                If a rancher improved their respiratory losses by a small percent they would balance losses due to all predators.

                • WM says:

                  You know Yvette, your comment is intellectually dishonest. If you want to compare losses from wolves as some sort of percentage of overall losses it needs to be ONLY WHERE WOLVES HAVE ACCESS TO COWS or SHEEP. It affects individual operators in specific areas of specific states where wolves are. Christ some people are dense!

                • Yvette says:

                  From my post:
                  Only 5.5% is attributed to all predator related losses, of which 3.7% is due to wolves.

                  WM, I don’t have a word to describe what it is with you and the thorn you have about wolves. Dishonesty is not it, but if there is a word for willful and intentional failure to accept the truth and facts when they are right in front of you then that is the word.

                  Enough. It is pointless and a waste of time to attempt to have an honest discussion with you on this particular subject. I believe you are blind when it comes to wolf predation on cattle and the true costs of those tiny losses. Willfully and intentionally blind on this subject.

                  I respect your opinion and knowledge on many issues. This is not one of them.

          • Nancy says:

            The question that begs for an answer is, “What is the numerical difference between wolf social carrying capacity and human tolerance capacity, including impacts to prey base and putative cost to livestock producers?”

            Depends where WM and as far as impacts on prey base and livestock (especially out here in the west) the “perceived” impacts too often lack credibility.

            The favorite prey (like elk for instance) are up in most regions around Montana and depredations on livestock are down from previous years.

            Is it because the trapping & hunting of wolves had an effect or like a recent study shows (can’t find it right off hand) destroying families like wolves, coyotes, etc. will only increase their populations and, add inexperienced members of their population to mix.

            The Ninemile Wolves by Rick Bass,


            perfect example of wolves that could and did, settle into a ranching community, till they lost vital members of their pack.

            Fact is, our own species can’t get a grip on what the loss of family members will do to the rest of the family/community (poverty comes to mind) yet we have no problem manipulating other species and their families, to benefit a few.

          • rork says:

            “Wolf density, from what I can surmise, will never be allowed to be as high as they can tolerate each other.”
            You know there’s been no wolf increase since 2011 in Michigan’s U.P., so quit saying never. I admit the barriers provided by the lakes makes it easier here, and we haven’t faced the real deal yet (wolves in lower MI).

            • WM says:

              How many “problem wolves” are removed from the Upper Peninsula each year either by the state, feds, or somebody doing a little 3S? I will stand with the statement as written, and my source for such a statement is one in writing previously made by Dr. Dave Mech.

              • WM says:



                And then there are the 3S matters that go undiscovered and unreported. Same is true in parts of ID, MT and WY.

                • Immer Treue says:

                  In private conversation with two MN DNR officials and open forum question and answer session with USFWS officer, who’s name I have inconveniently misplaced, concurred that on average 10% of MN wolves are killed illegally each year.

                  I would not think that MI, or for that matter WI are any different.

                • rork says:

                  It is indisputable that we in MI are the better hunters, marksmen and outlaws. 😉

                  I should have added to my other comment below: WM, you may be correct, and I may be wrong. Did not want to sound like it’s proven or that I must be right.

              • rork says:

                Argument from authority and argument from invisible data.
                One hard data point I know (our DNR is not so transparent) is that between January 27, 2012, and June 30, 2013, 73 wolf deaths were recorded by the state, about half from legal action, 20% from poaching, and 20% from cars. In order for people to be the cause of flat wolf numbers you will need to postulate a degree of wolf poaching that far exceeds anyone else’s estimates.

        • Yvette says:

          +++++ Nancy.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      +1 Gary!

      • Mareks Vilkins says:

        one should point out that half of federal lands is operated by big corporations for whom a loss of one cow is not such big deal.

        there were 6.26M cattle in NRM in 2013, with 137 wolf kills. From 1987 to 2013 wolves have killed 1 990 cattle in NRM and 893 livestock producers were paid compensations by Defenders of Wildlife.

        Elk is much bigger troublemaker for ranchers so they should be thankful for wolves who eat at least some of those troublemakers, imo.

        but what about this ‘primer’ of the economics of ranching?

        • Mareks Vilkins says:

          Welfare Ranching: The Subsidized Destruction of the American West

          PART V
          Ranching Economics and Livestock Subsidies: The True Cost of a Hamburger

          • Yvette says:

            I fear WM refuses to accept the meaningless numbers (there’s really no statistical analysis; it’s simple division and/or ratios like we learned in grade school) since they hold information based on numbers and facts rather than an emotional response from all of those who fail to be wolf moderates.

            Again, only 5.5% of all cattle losses can be attributed to any predator. Those are the numbers and facts gathered by the USDA National Agricultural Statistical Service.

            Anyone with the time and desire could probably find a state by state break-out of cattle losses by category. My guess is it’s available. Cull the wolf states and compare the percentages of losses due to wolves to all other predators then figure out the predator losses compared to non-predator. My best guess is there will still be a significantly higher ratio of non-predator related losses than predator losses.

            Additionally, if ranchers were to improve their loss rate due to animal husbandry they could more than balance the losses due to wolves and all predators.

            • Ed Loosli says:

              Yvette +1:
              I think some of these private commercial cattle owners are stuck in the, “I’ll do my ranching any way I want, just like my Grandfather did… We will collect our welfare, we will shoot anything that gets in our way… Why change when the government takes care of most of our problems, especially regarding predators.”

              • WM says:


                You could probably say the same for the guy who grows almonds (federal water projects by BOR, extension service technical help paid in part by the feds usually thru a land grant university like UC Davis in CA), corn (CRP, crop supports, below market disaster insurance), tobacco (subsidies up thru 2014 anyway), and all the farmers/ranchers receive subsidized services from APHIS/Wildlife Services to deal with invasive plants, insects and all the various types of wildlife that are killed by those nasty folks at WS. Some even receive taxpayer help to design and pay for water delivery systems like center pivot irrigation, or lined ditches.

                “Welfare rancher” has become a convenient handle some have used to single a particular group of recipients, and not the whole group. So when you talk about collecting “welfare” you need to look a little closer to home. There are lots of subsidies out there and it takes many forms while given to many agricultural and non-agricultural businesses.

                And, if you don’t think some of these other businesses do a little self-help you are pretty damned naïve. Don’t you have a lot of water theft right now in CA? Wonder how many of those almond farmers and golf courses are playing by the rules?

                • Nancy says:

                  “There are lots of subsidies out there and it takes many forms while given to many agricultural and non-agricultural businesses”

                  Ooohhh, say can you see…………


                • Ed Loosli says:

                  You’re right about all the subsidies out there for Big Ag, not just welfare-ranchers. And about California water for agriculture, unfortunately, there are no rules — Agriculture in CA can use all the water they can pipe in or pump up. The only restrictions Gov. Brown has put in place regarding water use are for urban areas and their human populations.

                • WM says:


                  It is not just “Big Ag” that gets the subsidies. It is small farmers/ranchers, too, who get it. There is an entire network of Natural Resource Conservation Districts (federally created entities all across the US) that is involved in the administration of this political gravy. That is why it so popular in the agriculture sector – and difficult to get rid of.


        • WM says:


          I see you suffer from some of the same frailties as Yvette, including quotation of meaningless statistics.

          There is simply no risk of livestock depredation from wolves where there are no wolves.

          By the way, how many wolves were in the NRM in 1987 or even up until about 1997 -total?

          Sort of like there is no risk of a snow storm on the beaches of Hawaii, so there is no need to consider costs of snow removal.

          Now, if you break down how many cows there are in a county or portion of a county in a given year where wolves might travel the risk becomes more interesting and the statistics more meaningful. Let’s also think about the future where wolves might ultimately go as their numbers and range increase. The statistics may even get more interesting, as greater costs are expended for preventive measures by more producer operations which may be at risk. This is because now the producer in that “at risk” location must now deal with the potential for production losses, and/or incur increased costs for capital outlays or increased operations and maintenance costs. You know, adding the range rider, getting some big friggn’ dogs wolves are afraid of, and maybe even two or three in case a whole pack shows up to work over the herd.

          And, dang they ain’t no lessons on how to deal with wulfs or the additional costs of havin’ ’em around on the Montana cowboy college website.

          • Mareks Vilkins says:

            WM, it’s not a secret that you are control-freak and your understanding of ‘intellectual honesty’ a bit tacky

            1) maybe explanation is exactly because ranchers don’t consider wolves such a threat to even start to bother about prevention costs

            2)as you are constantly droping that statement [“There is simply no risk of livestock depredation from wolves where there are no wolves”] you are the one who should provide detailed statistics about cattle numbers & wolf depredation on a county / wolf range level

            3)when Defenders stopped to provide compensation fund The US Congress stepped in and created 5 year & $5M Wolf Livestock Loss Demonstration Project to cover both wolf kills and nonlethal methods implementation. For 2013 MT received $70K, ID $80K and WY $34K for depredation compensation.

            For nonlethal prevention projects MT got $100K, ID $50K.

            It seems there are not so many ranches to even give a try to get money from feds to implement nonlethal methods. So you are control-freak who tries to be more Catholic than the Pope, imo.

            • Mareks Vilkins says:

              article on 60 pages + lots of references

              Trampling the Public Trust

              Debra L. Donahue

              University of Wyoming College of Law, Laramie, Wyoming.

              This Article derives from presentations given in 2009 at the University of Montana Rural Law Symposium and the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation’s 14th Institute for Natural Resources Law Teachers


              Livestock production is a chief contributor to many significant
              and intractable environmental problems. This Article examines the causal role of livestock (especially beef) production in global climate change, predator control in the western United States, and winter elk feeding in Wyoming. It argues that ending livestock grazing on western public lands is a cost effective first step for dealing with these problems and is readily achievable under existing law. Removing livestock would lead to improved
              watershed conditions and make reintroduction of predators politically feasible, which would promote further recovery of landscapes impacted by native ungulate populations. Ending public-land grazing would facilitate the closure of (arguably unlawful) elk feedgrounds, which contribute to
              unnaturally high elk populations and promote the spread of diseases. Closing the feedgrounds would improve conditions on these sites and slow the spread of disease. Collectively, these measures would promote ecosystem restoration, which would enhance prospects for coping with climate change.

              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                and then of course there’s Mike Hudak

                Mike Hudak’s Western Turf Wars — the book you need to understand how governmental mismanagement of ranching is destroying America’s public lands with your tax dollars.

                Mike Hudak’s Remarks
                At Speak for Wolves: Yellowstone 2014

            • WM says:


              Control freak – that’s rich.

              States which have wolves – have the data on wolf caused injuries/mortality. Ag Census information is available for how many cows/sheep there are by county. I’m not the one making an assertion about mortality that is grossly out of context, so think I’ll pass.

              Here’s the thing about the $5M Demonstration project money. It is split among 10 states over 5 years, a million a year. There is no real money there, and likely little accountability on how it is spent. You heard any results about what has been or is being done with it? It is political grease meant to silence the squeaky wheels.

              Meaningful use might have been to give it to APHIS/WS or FWS in conjunction with a university or two for a couple multi-year comprehensive studies and field trial demonstration projects (with participation from Defenders and others). Purpose: Get the long term economic impacts to ranch operators in wolf country. And, by the way, Mareks I have no predisposition to which way the numbers come out. But, intuitively I do think the incremental cost increase may well be more expensive than some here believe it is. That is why Defenders and CBD aren’t behind it.

              As for Professor Donahue at U of Wyoming, I respect her work, and I even agree with her on many points. Heck, we were even trained or influenced by some of the same people. However, I think her reliance on the work of Ripple, et al (as stated in the paper you link to)is perhaps misplaced, at least for the present state of work on “trophic cascade.” I don’t disagree with her on the impacts of public lands grazing policy. But, that is only part of the huge puzzle that is the 19th Century natural resources exploitation economics of parts of the West. It’s complicated.

              Hudak – Pppffffttt. Here is an interview of this tofu turkey on vegan radio – and now he’s peeing on the Sierra Club for its public lands grazing policy.

              Hey, speaking of complicated, how’s the Greece thing with the EU working out for ya – your socialist views and all? The EU countries want the Greece problem gone (it is embarrassing), and then are willing to put together an aid package when their economy really goes down the tube (partially the result of bad government and lax tax collection from rich individual and company deadbeats causing them to default on huge government loans).

              • Yvette says:

                Greece? Nice attempt at a switch-a-roo. It’s a tactic used when people know their argument won’t hold. Save that BS for people on the witness stand.

                Again, only 5.5% of cattle losses were due to ANY predator, and of that 5.5%, 3.7% were attributed to wolves. That leaves 94.5% of the remainder cattle losses being for non-predator related causes. Given that 28% of losses are due to respiratory problems, ranchers can decrease that loss by finding the primary cause and instilling methods that improve recovery. Factor in most of the other non-predator related losses to improve survival and/or recovery and ba-da-boom, they’ll still come out ahead. All they have to do is improve their non-predator loss rate by 3.7% to break even. It’s just not that damned complicated. But then, what would the rancher whine about if the big bad woof fails to huff and puff and blow his little house down? I guess our corporatism government won’t reimburse for respiratory losses.

              • Mareks Vilkins says:


                2014 – 35 cattle, 6 sheep,1 horse

                2013 – 50 cattle, 24 sheep, 3 horses, 1 goat

                In 2013, Beaverhead County livestock producers received $22,170 for 14 cattle and one sheep death.

                The next highest payout went to Lewis and Clark County producers who received $11,200 for seven sheep killed by wolves.

                Beaverhead County is Montana’s largest county by area, covering 5,542 square miles. Approx. 2/3 of the land area contained in Beaverhead County is comprised of public lands, including Beaverhead Deer Lodge National Forest, Bureau of Land Management and State of Montana Lands.

                Beaverhead County is the top cattle-producing county in Montana, making agriculture one of the staples of the county’s economy. Beaverhead County is also home to Barretts Minerals, one of the world’s largest talc mines. Gold and precious gemstones are also mined in Beaverhead County.

                Beaverhead County Statistics: (2007 Census)
                A total of 431 Farms and Ranches combine to cover over 1.25 million acres, with an average farm / ranch size being 2,875 acres. Since Beaverhead County is home to some of the largest Farms and Ranches in the State of Montana, the median farm / ranch size is approx. 230 acres.

                Beaverhead County is home to over 137,000 head of Cattle and Calves, 14,000+ Sheep, and 2,200+ Horses.

                so 35-50 cattle out of 140K cattle is a huge burden

                to get more revenues maybe they should be more worried about the General Mining Act of 1872 – and not about few cows lost to wolves.

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  Beaverhead county (2012)

                  Cattle & calves – 153.65K
                  Sheep & lambs – 16.19K
                  Horses – 2.36K

                • WM says:


                  I would not be surprised to learn there is a little 3S going on there than makes it on a summary chart somewhere. There are few identified wolf packs in the area, if you look on the FWS pack summary map. Some around the fringes, though. Could be some of that is habitat related, though. Beaverhead County only has a population of about 13,000 people. Wouldn’t be a bit surprised if you went out there and mentioned the word “fladry” while showing them a sample, that you would be found the next morning wrapped in it, with a little tar and feather frosting and wolf tail stuffed in your mouth.

                  They did have the first “non-lethal wolf/predator damage management” workshop for livestock operators and landowners in Dillon last January. Wonder how that went?


                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  in Beaverhead County (2013) ranchers lost 14 cattle and one sheep out of 153.65K Cattle & calves and 16.19K sheep & lambs

                  bottom line – huge risk for local livestock producers

                  in Montana Beaverhead is consistently among those counties where’s the highest wolf depredation, often closely trailed by Madison, Glacier and Lewis and Clark counties.

                  There are few identified wolf packs in the area, if you look on the FWS pack summary map

                  average dispersal distance for the wolves in the NRM is ~60 miles but Beaverhead’s area is ~5.5K sq mi – that is equal to 75 x 75 mi.

                  “if you went out there and mentioned the word “fladry” while showing them a sample, that you would be found the next morning wrapped in it, with a little tar and feather frosting and wolf tail stuffed in your mouth.”

                  well, first of all I wouldn’t mention fladry as I assume that they really don’t care about wolf depredation. But I certainly wouldn’t hide my views about wolf issue if it would pop-up in conversation. And don’t judge by yourself – I have streetfighting experience and I’m not shy to apply my know-how.

              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                and $1M per year is sufficient amount of money for wolf depredation + revenues from wolf ecotourism + ranching subsidies + the historical context of origins of livestock industry in the West (“Predatory Bureaucracy” by Michael Robinson)


                • Ed Loosli says:

                  USDA’s Wildlife Services did have the first “non-lethal wolf/predator damage management” workshop for livestock operators and landowners in Dillon last January. Wonder how that went?
                  Here is a report on how that went:


                • Ida Lupine says:

                  Good. Removing livestock carcasses seems like a big deal and a no-brainer. (Sorry, it needs to be said.) I don’t know why we still need to have these conversations in the 21st century, but I’m glad it appears this time non-lethal measures are is being taken seriously. Coincidentally, with all of the bad press poised, and damage control, of course. Now, did they ever fire the psychopaths WS had working for them, tearing apart coyotes with dogs?

                • Nancy says:

                  “Wonder how that went?”

                  Ed, thanks for the switchboard report on this workshop. I was there (green knit cap/black coat, red stripes, back to the camera 🙂

                  Posted my thoughts months ago (on the WN site) after attending this workshop.

                  Thought it was a bold move in the right direction, seeing some ranchers, taking a non lethal approach to raising livestock around predators, after decades of blowing away ANY predator that came close to their “product” (and also relying on tax payer’s dollars to blow the rest away, via WS)

                  About a hundred people there. Less than half, livestock raisers from what I gathered. But as I mentioned in my comments months ago, no ranchers from my area.

                  “Western justice” will continue to dominate the landscape here when it comes to livestock and predators because its always been an easy fix, thru a lot of channels – WS, legal trapping, shooting and then the “just for fun” bunch who come from afar, to kill.

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  “Western justice” will continue to dominate the landscape here when it comes to livestock and predators


                  Lewis and Clark County cattle producers back predator control tax

                  The Lewis and Clark County Commission allowed a $1 per head of cattle tax to be enacted. The money will help pay predator-control expenses incurred by the Wildlife Services

                  All of the money that’s generated in the county by the tax is spent in the county

                  Fifty-three out of Montana’s 56 counties have taxes to aid in predator control, and with the addition of Lewis and Clark County, 24 of those 53 counties will have taxes in place to aid in protecting cattle

                  Two other counties are in the process of enacting a tax for this purpose too.
                  Of those 53 counties, 47 also have taxes to aid in protecting sheep.

                  “The reason I supported, my tax of a dollar a head is a miniscule amount compared to those losses,”


                  bottom line: there’s no future for nonlethal methods in the NRM

              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                Hey, speaking of complicated, how’s the socialism thing out for ya – your ‘free-market’ views and all?


                Among 18-30 year olds, supporters of socialism and capitalism are evenly divided at 43% each!in spite of the constant barrage of propaganda against socialism from the media and politicians.

                • WM says:

                  Yeah, I know, but think it might not last long. Here is the latest from my own Seattle, and its left leaning City Council (elected largely by the cash flush young techies downtown, but that may be about to change when they figure all this out). Seattle Times shedding a little light on the stupidity of one of many undertakings of this town, and the capitalists making money all along the way, from Wells Fargo bank, to ad agencies. What was it someone said….”you can’t fix stupid”, and “wisdom and youth should not be used in the same sentence”:


    • Louise Kane says:


    • Ed Loosli says:

      This is such a sad story and it is also ironic that the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (Chris Servheen)wants to soon legalize what this poacher just did.

      • W. Hong says:

        I thought hunting was a legal thing and poaching is a criminal act?

        • Ed Loosli says:

          W. Hong:
          What I said was that the USFWS wants to allow the killing of grizzly bears, which is exactly what this poacher did. — The grizzly is dead either way.

          • Ed Loosli says:

            W Hong:
            The latest census in China (2014) found that there were 1,864 giant pandas alive in the wild. There are more than twice the number of wild giant pandas as there are grizzly bears in the greater Yellowstone ecosystem. Would it be alright with you if China legalized the hunting of giant pandas??

            • W. Hong says:

              I did not say that Mr. Loosli, I asked a simple question. In fact, I read a story today that 10 people were arrested for killing a giant panda, I am sure if they are found guilty of doing this, they will be killed for doing it.

              • Nancy says:

                I would imagine poaching would go way down in this country W. Hong if the same kind of penalties applied.

              • Jeff N. says:

                W. Hong,

                Is that truly the penalty for poaching in China?

                Also, since you are from China what are the cultural attitudes towards wolves and brown bears in China?

  13. Yvette says:

    I don’t know if this will show up but it is a fantastic video of a bobcat and coyote interaction in a park in Arlington, TX. I felt so sorry for that little coyote and I am a feline fiend. All cats; big wild ones; small wild ones and domestic cats. I love all cats. The bobcat’s movements is no different than my gang of domestics when a couple of them are in a spat. A cat is a cat. At the end it’s like this little coyote is saying, “It’s cool man, everything’s cool”.

    And kudos to the lady on the bike that had enough sense to remain still when the bobcat walked right by her.

    I hope you can see this because it’s a good video.

    • Nancy says:

      Sounded like an interesting video Yvette but I get this up when I click on your link:

      Sorry, this page isn’t available

      The link you followed may be broken, or the page may have been removed

      • Yvette says:

        Darn it. I was afraid of that since this video isn’t a youtube. It showed up on my facebook feed but the guy is not a fb friend. I wish I had a way to share because it’s one of the better wildlife videos I’ve seen.

        • Nancy says:

          Here ya go Yvette 🙂

          Both animals seemed pretty comfortable around humans. And that bobcat looked like it wasn’t going to take any crap from the person filming either 🙂

          • Ida Lupine says:

            🙂 My goodness, who’s king of the forest? I love the coyote’s streeeeeettttccchhh at the end too. 🙂

          • Yvette says:

            I’m so glad you got the video up, Nancy. That bobcat moves like he rules the whole freaking park, which he probably does. He walked like he was teh king. It looked like to me that the bobcat never touched the coyote even when the little yote yelped. That poor little coyote, he was too cute. That relaxed stretch at the end was perfect. It was like, ‘whew, I’m glad I showed that bobcat”.

            Obviously, I love this video. Two of my favorite things; bobcats and coyotes.

  14. Ed Loosli says:

    China Arrests 10 Suspected Poachers Of Killing Giant Panda

  15. Ida Lupine says:

    Jeez – is nothing sacred if a small population of giant pandas is under threat from poaching? If humans are a part of nature, then again, so was smallpox. (I hope nobody takes that the wrong way). Who was it, a scientist, who said not only would the plant do just fine without us, it would even thrive? Nobody to tear down the forests, no problem wolves, everything keeping itself in check by nature’s beautiful plan. Humans are the only creature on earth who can destroy the planet with their constant warring.

  16. Louise Kane says:

    Cormorants being hazed to protect fish
    plan to kill 10,000 birds to move forward to be killed by Wildlife Services

    ten thousand birds to be killed
    who is going to manage humans while we self destruct by killing everything that threatens us one way or another or needs to consume something we deem as our food alone.

    Its too sad sometimes, heartbreaking

  17. Ida Lupine says:

    It’s mind-bogglingly blind. We refuse to address the real problem:

    “Unfortunately, despite science’s recognition that salmon play a very important role in the Pacific Northwest, the fish are facing increased pressures on their population. Commercial fishing, habitat loss and degradation due to logging, mining, hydraulic dams and agriculture, water pollution, and global warming are just some of the threats faced by salmon in the Pacific Northwest. Additionally, wild Pacific salmon are facing threats from growing salmon aquaculture presence in the region. These efforts to provide more salmon for human consumption are placing increased pressure on already strained native populations and are wreaking havoc on the local ecosystems all in the name of dinner.”

  18. Ida Lupine says:

    Yes, you can always count on hard times to bring out the best in people:

  19. Ed Loosli says:

    Lawsuit Challenges U.S. Approval of Deep-sea Mineral Mining

  20. Ed Loosli says:

    “Preliminary Injunction Aims to End Unlawful Contamination of California’s Protected Water Sources from Oil Industry Injections” – Statement from EarthJustice Staff Attorney Will Rostov

  21. Mareks Vilkins says:

    Yes, bad beekeeping is to blame for unwanted urban swarms

    Novice beekeepers need to be vigilant for the moment a queen bee will lead workers to find a new hive, especially in cities and towns where swarms can cause disruption – even if they are harmless and nothing to fuss over

  22. bret says:

    Pinniped Monitoring At Bonneville Dam This Year Showing Record Numbers Of Sea Lions,Salmon Predation

    • Ed Loosli says:

      It is interesting so notice in this entire hysterical account of sea-lions eating salmon, there is not one mention of how many salmon were caught (killed) by humans from the mouth of the Columbia River to the Bonneville Dam during Feb., March and April. My guess is that humans caught a lot more than did the sea-lions.

      • Gary Humbard says:

        Ed, the article was about sea lions affecting spring Chinook salmon runs, not about the overall impacts to salmon in the Columbia River system. BTW, the salmon fishing industry is heavily regulated whereas Sea Lions, Cormorants and Caspian Terns basically have free reign on eating all of the salmon they can. Then when the NMFS proposes to kill some cormorants, all hell breaks loose. All of the impacts need to be addressed regarding salmonid restoration.

  23. Professor Sweat says:

    “One of the proposed regulations would prohibit fresh-meat baits, meaning only meat aged for at least 24 hours could be used as bait. Another bars the use of rabbit or hare parts — common Canada lynx prey — for bait.

    The settlement would also require bobcat trappers to check their traps once every 48 hours and ban the use of foothold or leghold traps with jaws larger than 5 and 3/8 inches.”

    • Ed Loosli says:

      Prof. Sweat:
      For being so wonderfully pro-active, big thanks again go to the Friends of the Wild Swan, Wildearth Guardians and Alliance for the Wild Rockies.

  24. bret says:

    Second wolf caught on camera in Western WA.

    • WM says:

      Sizeable old growth stumps and the corner of a newer building roof (carport?) in the background. Mossy alder tree on the right, and a couple big gnarly sword ferns. Definitely west/wet side. Could it have been in somebody’s rural home driveway?

      Do you have any more information, including location, from the video, bret?

      • WM says:

        By the way, just looking for more confirmation of this event with a Google search and came across an exchange between WDFW and the folks in Colville (Eastern WA, north of Spokane), where the highest concentration of wolves is. Interesting, and predictable comment – and we need to remember part of the WA wolf management plan involves translocation as an option.

        • Nancy says:

          “Onlookers also rejected the department’s contention that wolves are arriving naturally to the area. They said wolves were deliberately reintroduced into the Yellowstone National Park ecosystem in the 1990s and have migrated from the park”

          Such short memories WM. Cattle were never native to the west yet introduced and a century later, still dealing with the aftermath 🙂

          Abbey had it right:

          • WM says:


            What part of the statement you quote is factually inaccurate?

            Well, humans in large numbers and their various other impacts from asphalt to water storage were never native to the West, either. The harsh reality is humans view the land and what is on it much differently, largely depending on how they make a living, recreate or maybe hope to leave a legacy for the future. But, I guess we mostly know that.

      • Ed Loosli says:

        And why, prey tel, would you want to put out the LOCATION of this lone wolf in Western Washington on a very public web-site like TheWildlifeNews??

        • WM says:


          The request was intended for general information, perhaps near what major roads or towns. On the other hand, it appears this wolf could well be on somebody’s private property.

          Obviously someone recorded this on a game camera. Don’t you think those who live in the area have a right to know more, especially if they have animals -dogs, horses, cattle, sheep or other domestic animals like llamas or guanacos around? Curiosity aside, this wolf could be looking for a meal.

          If it decides to take on the family golden retriever, then what do you think will happen?

          • Ed Loosli says:

            If the neighbor’s golden retriever was running loose around the neighborhood, would you be in such a panic?? Domestic and feral dogs cause a lot more predation hassles for humans in Washington state than do wolves.

            • WM says:


              The distinction you fail to make is that somebody’s golden retriever just be within the bounds of its owner’s property when a wolf shows up. Again, then what? And what is an owner to do, if an uninvited protected wolf has the family dog by the throat, or is running a horse into a barbed wire fence? It seems the law even provides an exception for protection of the wolf in those instances, and with that I agree. Most folks would just like to know if the risk is in close proximity. You got a problem with that?

          • Nancy says:

            “Curiosity aside, this wolf could be looking for a meal”

            We’re all looking for a meal WM 🙂


            Although the landscape these days, seems to be in our favor, right?

          • Yvette says:

            “On the other hand, it appears this wolf could well be on somebody’s private property.

            Here is an NDN joke that’s been around for a long time and one I find as hilarious today as when I first heard it.

            A BIA (Bureau of Indian Agency) agent stopped by this old Navajo man’s ranch. He said, “I’m from the BIA and I’m here to inspect your ranch.”
            Old Navajo rancher, “Okay, but don’t go through that gate over there.”

            BIA Agent, “I’ve got a badge. You see this badge old man? I can go anywhere on the ranch I want since I’m here to inspect it.”

            The BIA agent goes through the gate that the old Navajo man told him to avoid. A few minutes later the BIA agent comes barreling back toward the gate screaming. The dust was flying and there was a bull hot on his BIA agent’s arse. The bull butted the BIA agent, threw him in the air and he plopped face down in the dirt.

            The old Navajo man, who now had a gaggle of grandkids standing around to watch the commotion, slapped his hat on his dusty jeans and screamed, “show him your badge! Show him your badge!”

            Moral of the story: Animals, wild or domestic pay no heed to man made fences and property lines.

      • bret says:

        WM, search Snoqualmie/North Bend/ I-90/ wolf, should yield a number of links. The wolf on the video is suspected to be same wolf killed on I-90 about 10 east of where Video and wolf sightings occurred.

        • Moose says:


          KIRO radio interviewed a ranching couple from east of Snohomish (city)..they said trail cam of wolf came from nearby neighbor…report didn’t equate wolf in video with the one killed on I90 near North Bend.

  25. Amre says:

    I’ve pretty much given up any hope of the western states changing for the better anytime soon. Instead of tackling problems like E.coli in streams head-on, Wyoming lawmakers prefer to act childish and make a law banning citizen science, all to prevent one organization (western watersheds) from exposing the deeds of ranchers on public lands. Shameful.

  26. Mareks Vilkins says:

    Early men and women were equal, say scientists

    Study shows that modern hunter-gatherer tribes operate on egalitarian basis, suggesting inequality was an aberration that came with the advent of agriculture

    The authors argue that sexual equality may have proved an evolutionary advantage for early human societies, as it would have fostered wider-ranging social networks and closer cooperation between unrelated individuals. “It gives you a far more expansive social network with a wider choice of mates, so inbreeding would be less of an issue,” said Dyble. “And you come into contact with more people and you can share innovations, which is something that humans do par excellence.”

    Dyble said that egalitarianism may even have been one of the important factors that distinguished our ancestors from our primate cousins. “Chimpanzees live in quite aggressive, male-dominated societies with clear hierarchies,” he said. “As a result, they just don’t see enough adults in their lifetime for technologies to be sustained.”

    The findings appear to be supported by qualitative observations of the hunter-gatherer groups in the study. In the Philippines population, women are involved in hunting and honey collecting and while there is still a division of labour, overall men and women contribute a similar number of calories to the camp. In both groups, monogamy is the norm and men are active in childcare.

  27. Ed Loosli says:

    “Growing human populations, unsustainable hunting, high densities of livestock, and habitat loss have devastating consequences for large, long-lived, slow-breeding, and, therefore, vulnerable herbivore species,” reads “Collapse of the world’s largest herbivores” in Science Advances, a publication of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
    We know the culprits, even if we’ve never set foot in Africa, where most of these creatures reside: poaching, habitat loss and environmental degradation. According to the Washington Post, the animals have only about 19 percent of their historical ranges left to roam on, with the elephant, hippopotamus and black rhinoceros “now living on ‘tiny fractions’ of their previous empires.”

    “So, what can you do? The researchers say we’re all tasked with saving these animals, particularly those among us who can afford to allocate funds to the cause: “The world’s wealthier populations will need to provide the resources essential for ensuring the preservation of our global natural heritage of large herbivores. A sense of justice and development is essential to ensure that local populations can benefit fairly from large herbivore protection and thereby have a vested interest in it.”

  28. Ed Loosli says:

    “Alfalfa and pasture that feed cattle consume the most water in drought-stricken California”

    “The crop that consumes the most water in California is alfalfa, which is largely grown as feed for cattle and dairy cows. Pasture grown for grazing livestock is the third-largest California water user. That means keeping cows fat (if not happy) consumes 2.7 trillion gallons of water a year.” And, to make matters worse, much of the alfalfa grown in California is exported to Japan and China for their dairy cows.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Huh. Was it really an actual goring, or a head-butt? Bison horns aren’t really long.

      Some of the things I’ve seen, with people getting too close (rushing) the wildlife to get photos would really curl your hair. Very young children scrambling over precarious steps at the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone while their parents don’t seem to be looking out for them was scary too.

  29. Louise Kane says:

    proceedings from wolf stewards conference

    • Ed Loosli says:

      Louise: Since you are very knowledgeable about predator and prey science, perhaps you can answer this question for me. In the Winter and early Spring, how do researchers of deer-mortality that come across a dead deer or fawn know whether it died of natural causes like freezing to death and then a meat eater like a bear, bobcat, coyote or wolf came along after it died and ate it, or if in fact, a predator did the actual killing?? It seems to me that without knowing which came first – natural death or predation, there is no real way to tell whether there was any actual predation or not. (?)

      • Louise Kane says:

        Ed, I am not the best person to ask here about this. I suspect Jon Way is a much better source, and I know others here that probably know more perhaps JB and Immer. I don’t recall reading any studies on this. I know that in the few instances of humans attacked by predators forensic methods were used to determine what attacked or killed the human but I don’t know how extensive predation on prey species by predators is studied post mortem. It’s a good question. anyone know of any studies on this?

  30. Yvette says:

    It’s happened again. “I thought it was a coyote”.
    A wolf, or as reported, what appears to be a wolf was shot by a coyote hunter.

    “The hunter did the right thing by immediately reporting it to fish and game”.

    Same playbook. Every time.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      What is with the knee-‘jerk’ reaction to wild canines? We’ve really got to work on that. Even if is was a coyote, why always the knee-jerk reaction to shoot?

    • Immer Treue says:

      As long as “McKittrick” is on the books, this will continue to happen, this will continue to occur with impunity.

      • Louise Kane says:

        +1 Immer

      • Mareks Vilkins says:

        if the court cannot prove that a wolf who killed cattle or sheep hadn’t in his mind ‘feral horse’ then Wildlife Services shouldn’t kill that wolf

  31. Ida Lupine says:

    For the first time, all five big government hatcheries in California’s Central Valley for fall-run Chinook California salmon — a species of concern under the federal Endangered Species Act — are going to truck their young, release-ready salmon down to the Bay, rather than release them into rivers to make the trip themselves.

    And California’s wild native fish should pack a sandwich and something to read; they’ll be spending a lot of the summer on the road too.

    “Bone dry. Bone dry,” said fish biologist Don Portz of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, who is six years into an effort to restore the southernmost salmon stream in the U.S., the Central Valley’s San Joaquin River.

    Drought, a dam and heavy use of the river’s water for irrigation have dried 60 miles of the San Joaquin. For the young salmon, whose life cycle for millions of years has involved travel from the river back and forth to the San Francisco Bay, that now means a 1 ½-hour ride down California Highway 99 in a pickup-mounted fish tank.

    This is what I call a crying shame. Salmon and their lifecycle are just iconic and beautiful.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      What could possibly go wrong here? *making Edvard Munch ‘The Scream’ face* It’s too bad they couldn’t shut down the highway temporarily so that the fish could arrive in safety and in a timely manner, out of the intense heat and not subject to traffic accidents. 🙁

  32. Nancy says:

    Feeling rather insignificant after watching this video, but not going to give up on what changes our species can make… in the mean time 🙂

    • Barb Rupers says:

      Thanks, Nancy. It brought to mind the following set:

      • Nancy says:

        Nice Barb and why our species should be a bit more humble than what we are 🙂

      • Mareks Vilkins says:

        16.But that’s nothing. Again, as Carl once mused, there are more stars in space than there are grains of sand on every beach on Earth

        before Carl Sagan was born that knowledge was shared by the Buddha in Diamond Sutra when he was teaching about pure consciousness:

        ‘Subhuti, what do you think? Do Bodhisattvas adorn Buddha lands (by their moral actions)?’

        ‘No. World Honoured One. Why? Because this is not real adornment; it is (merely) called the adornment of Buddha lands.’

        ‘Subhuti, this is why all Bodhisattvas and Mahasattvas should thus develop a pure and clean mind which should not abide in form, sound, smell, taste, touch and dharma. They should develop a mind which does not abide in anything. ‘Subhuti, supposing a man has a body as great as mount Sumeru, what do you think? Would such a body be great?’

        Subhuti replied: ‘Very great, World Honoured One. Why? Because the Buddha says it is not the real body but is (merely) called a great body.’

        ‘Subhuti, if there were as many rivers like the Ganges as there are grains of sand in the Ganges, would the total of grains of sand in all these rivers be very great?’

        Subhuti replied: ‘Very great, World Honoured One! These rivers would be innumerable; how much more so would be their sand-grains.’

        ‘Subhuti, I now tell you truly. If a virtuous man or woman filled a number of universes, as great as the number of sand-grains in all these rivers, with the seven treasures, and gave them all away in alms (dana), would his or her merit be great?’

        Subhuti replied: ‘Very great, World Honoured One!’

        The Buddha said to Subhuti: ‘If a virtuous man or woman receives and holds (in mind) even a four-line stanza of this sutra and expounds it to others, his or her merit will surpass that of the almsgiver. Furthermore, Subhuti, wheresoever this sutra or even one of its four-line stanzas is expounded, you should know that all devas, men and asuras should make their offerings there as if the place was a Buddha stupa or a Buddha temple. How much more so if someone is able to receive, hold (in mind), read and recite the whole sutra! Subhuti, you should know that such a person will achieve the highest and rarest Dhama. Wheresoever this sutra may be found the Buddha and His respected disciples will be there also.’
        The Diamond Sutra

  33. MJ says:

    Promoting predators and compassionate conservation
    Arian D. Wallach, Marc Bekoff, Michael Paul Nelson, and Daniel Ramp

    Excellent study results and sensibility of compassionate conservation, rethinking our traditions

  34. Mareks Vilkins says:

    long article

    The Fight Over the Most Polarizing Animal in the West

  35. Louise Kane says:

    Why protect coyotes and wolves in wolf territory

    Another disperser wolf seeking a home territory in prime wolf habitat, shot in Colorado.

    Coyotes typically weigh between 20 and 50 pounds, this wolf was approximately 90 pounds.

    Until the Mckittrick policy is reversed, no dispersing wolves will be safe. The frequent claim for wolf killers is they thought it was a coyote.

    For this and many other reasons, state agencies where coyotes and wolves roam should be required to protect both species. Red and Mexican wolf populations hover in the low hundred, if that.

    Does anyone know here why the federal statute does not seem to be creating a legal mandate for these states to adopt coyote hunting restrictions?

    In fact in North Carolina, the rumors are that the USFWS is about to abandon Red Wolf Recovery. I don’t understand how they can do that legally?

    anyone having more insight into these questions please post. I don’t mean I don’t understand politically I want to understand why the states can’t be forced to adopt policies that protect wolves from coyote hunters when its obvious the coyote excuse is affecting Mexican and Red wolf recovery.

    Federal law trumps state.

  36. Mareks Vilkins says:

    Return of the WOLF

  37. Ida Lupine says:

    These are all fascinating articles. I also have wondered why coyotes aren’t given some sort of protection too, so that people can’t brazenly waltz in to F&W to report a wolf they knowingly killed as a ‘I tot I taw a coyote, I did, I did!’

    “What would you do if that wolf came trotting around the corner right now?” I asked no one in particular.

    “Shoot it in the face,” Zeb replied.


    With this kind of animosity, we simply cannot leave wolves and coyotes with no protection at all once numbers are deemed ‘recovered’, and throw them to the two-leggeds without any kind of protection at all from irrational violence against them. Proven depredation of livestock should be the only reason for killing them.

    I’ve also wondered how it can be proven after a livestock death if the cause of death was a predator, or if the predator happened along after the fact for a meal.

    • Nancy says:

      Some facts that might help Ida.

      • Ed Loosli says:

        Thanks for this information. However, unfortunately it still doesn’t answer a question of dead deer/elk/moose (often days old) to know whether the deer/elk/moose died of natural causes and then was eaten by a wolf, or whether it was killed by wolves?? It seems to me that, these research statistics that say x% of deer/elk/moose are killed by wolves have to be taken with a huge grain of salt, unless the kill was actually witnessed by a researcher.

        • TC says:

          You’re looking for an easy answer to a complicated question. There isn’t one. It’s like asking how you choose a population model to determine if species X is stable or in decline, eithout understaning models, assumptions, or parameters. Or how to construct a genetic assemblage of a putative species to determine if subspecies status is supported, without understanding genomics and sequencing and analysis tools. To do this well requires training. A lot of it – in order to ascribe a cause of death to wildlife in the field you ought to know biology, ecology, ethology, anatomy, physiology, anatomic pathology, and forensic pathology. You need to train under skilled mentors, and know your limitations. And then spend a lifetime honing skills, and have some laboratory support when needed. And be sure to be honest about uncertainty (something I question in many articles I read). It really shouldn’t be a layperson hobby if results are being published. And it really should be performed more rigorously, even by many professionals. There are a million shades of gray – a moose with terminal pneumonia, down and moribund, killed by wolves. What was cause of death (proximate and ultimate), and how to you attribute this in your classification scheme? The honest answer, with wildlife, often is “don’t know for sure, but the evidence supports ____ best”. And this has to be indicated clearly, or animals should be censored from studies. A whole lot of biologists do this pretty poorly if you ask me, but I’m a bit touchy on this subject.

          • Ed Loosli says:

            You make my point by writing; “In order to ascribe a cause of death to wildlife in the field you ought to know biology, ecology, ethology, anatomy, physiology, anatomic pathology, and forensic pathology. You need to train under skilled mentors, and know your limitations. And then spend a lifetime honing skills, and have some laboratory support when needed. And be sure to be honest about uncertainty”.
            My guess is that State wildlife agents do not meet these standards day in and day out, and yet, they still make cause-of-death pronouncements that find their way into wolf hunting quotas and other official actions.

          • Ida Lupine says:

            Thank you TC, this is a great post IMO.

  38. Mareks Vilkins says:

    Big Questions Essay Series

    Does evolution explain human nature?
    Does science make belief in God obsolete?
    Does the universe have a purpose?
    Does moral action depend on reasoning?

  39. Immer Treue says:

    Perhaps some of you have seen this:

    But for the sake of argument towards all those who cry wolves can hunt 24/7/365… It often times is accompanied with great risk.

    • Nancy says:

      A really amazing video Immer. The same folks that put the Planet Earth series together?

      Sends my mind in a lot of different directions given how powerful and determined wolves can be, simply trying to exist and what little depredation they’ve actually been involved in, when it comes to livestock here in the west since their “reintroduction”

      Cattle are not normal prey for wolves. Sheep either but sheep are usually weak when it comes to predators of all kinds.

      Seems like a no brainer for ranchers to make an effort to protect livestock from any predator but many of them continue to put their “product” in harms way by inviting predators in, no supervision in general or when dead cattle (who drop dead from a host of other reasons) are left to rot in fields or left to rot on public lands.

      Guessing its even easier now, to write off those losses (that have nothing to do with predation) given the price of beef today.

    • Barb Rupers says:

      Thanks, Immer. I tended to yelp with the wolves when they were tossed about; it’s a tough life for predators and prey alike.

      Another that shows a not so pretty event of nature:

      • Nancy says:

        I remember that video Barb. Here’s another one came up to the right, that people filming wildlife, ought to pay close attention to:

      • Immer Treue says:

        Barb and Nancy,

        Who really needs anything like TV, when true drama, as performed over the millennia continue. Tough to find unless your out there. Kind of like shed hunting, won’t find them if you’re not out there, but they have to be there in order to find them.

        • Nancy says:

          + 1 Immer. Rounding out my 2nd year (or is it the 3rd?) without TV. Would rather read 🙂

    • Ed Loosli says:

      Thanks timz:
      Dan Ashe says; “Whenever you are driving change, you create unrest and controversy”. Yes, it is Dan Ashe and the anti-wildlife zealots in Congress who are trying to drive change and therefore create unrest and controversy.
      Dan Ashe has been trying to gut the ESA ever since Pres. Obama appointed him.

  40. Ida Lupine says:

    Oh no! Here’s more info about it:

    “The most powerful environmental law on Earth, the Endangered Species Act (ESA), is under the gravest assault it has ever faced.”

    Endangered Species Act Caught in Congressional Crosshairs

    Why does this Administration continually give credence to the minority who have absolutely no motivation or desire to have the ESA work?

    • WM says:


      What makes you think it is the “minority?”

      Sadly, the R’s now hold both houses of Congress. And, some aspects of the ESA, as it is being applied in recent years through persistent and often highly technical legal aruments, including procedural flaws, has Western states including those with D governors asking for change. It also has a few fiscally conservative D’s in Congress shaking their heads behind closed doors. I am guessing CA Governor Jerry Brown and Californians that begin to understand the potential economic severity of long-term drought will be thinking more about agriculture, golf courses and jobs and lifestyle (hydropower,too) that are dependent on water storage and river operation between dams than on the fate of the pikeminnow, bony tail chub, humpback chub and razorback sucker (all ESA listed fish in the Colorado River basin).

      So, even that has to give Barbra Boxer (and Diane Feinstein who will not stand for re-election next year) pause to think about what it all means for their state.

      • Ed Loosli says:

        Are you calling for a dam at the base of the Grand Canyon to flood it for hydro-power and golf courses in California?? That hasn’t even occurred to Dan Ashe or Senators Boxer and Feinstein, so I hope they don’t read your post or they might get silly ideas.
        By the way, it is Barbara Boxer who is not running again for the Senate in 2016. Senator Dianne Feinstein’s term ends Jan. 3, 2019 (too bad, as Sen. Boxer is better on wildlife /environmental issues than Sen. Feinstein).

        • WM says:


          I am certainly not calling for anything. The point is the water in the Colorado basin has lots of competing interests, and CA is using more than its share already, maybe to be usurped by upstream states that lay claim to their rightful shares under the Colorado River Compact as their needs increase. The fish, though, have to some extent impacted the way the river is run in parts. With drought, including less precipitation throughout the basin, and lower snowpack that goes away sooner in the high country of Colorado, combined with more consumptive use the situation is likely to get much worse. The storage that is already there hasn’t been fully utilized for several years, and reservoir levels are low. Once again, its complicated and if there is to be compromise you can be assured maintenance of environmental quality likely won’t be at the top of the priority list for most.

          Appreciate the correction. Mistakenly thought Feinstein was soon to go at age 81, but guess Boxer just decided she’s had enough, eh?

  41. Ida Lupine says:

    “Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), the top Democrat on the committee, pledged to make it difficult for Republicans to get their bills passed.

    “We will have hand-to-hand combat on the floor if these bills get that far, which they may get voted out of this committee,” she said at the hearing.” Ha!

  42. Nancy says:

    “Upon discovering it was a grizzly, the hunter immediately reported the incident to FWP”

    Different strokes, for different folks……..

  43. Dave says:

    Great 1:44 trailer for “Unnatural Enemies: The War on Wolves”.

    Warning: it ain’t pretty.

    Pay special attention to the 6-second dialogue, 0:39-0:46.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Absolutely vile – the total nonchalance about killing. I loved the part where ‘it doesn’t work, but we do it because it’s part of the management plan’. Translation: the edict from another echelon. (I won’t say from on high).

      • Ida Lupine says:

        The only thing you can say is that it is informative, to know ‘what’ you are dealing with out there. They may have the 3S’s, but other have 3D – destroy, disarm, and dispose of. Snip snip! 🙂

    • Immer Treue says:

      I would be very interested in knowing what the 39-46 second mark pertains to in regard to wolf management.

      • Nancy says:

        Immer – what I got out of those few seconds?

        “Is it working? Probably not but its a management plan for wolves and predators”

        For whom?

        Last comment – ” Wolves are not the problem, we’re the problem”

    • Yvette says:

      I wonder when and where we can view the documentary in the U.S. The comments on youtube have been disabled.

    • Louise Kane says:

      Dave can you summarize the message I am not sure I can take a visual of another wolf slaying. Those visions haunt my sleep. summary please

      • Immer Treue says:

        Looks like a short history of wolf control/hunting based upon some if early footage. Also shows wolves in traps/snares being shot, and good example of jelly head/brain where wolf takes long time to die… Blood continues to pump to head via carotid arteries but jugular veins are pinched, resulting in characteristic swollen head.

        As with any trailer, tough to get real feel, but by title appears to have more with what’s going in in Alberta.

        • Yvette says:

          “and good example of jelly head/brain where wolf takes long time to die… Blood continues to pump to head via carotid arteries but jugular veins are pinched, resulting in characteristic swollen head.”

          I just learned something new. I was wondering what was the emphasis on the swollen head in the trailer.

          I saw on the youtube that it aired on a Canadian network yesterday.

        • Louise Kane says:

          thanks Immer not sure I can watch that

        • Nancy says:

          Some interesting comparisons between the US and Canada (land mass, population):

          Wolf populations Canada & the US:

          A good read:

          “And then the DNR did something very wise: it started a program of trapping wolves, attaching a radio collar to them, and monitoring their movements in the wild”

          I’m thinking if our species could only find a way to trap, collar & track organized crime like the biker bash in Texas recently (knew some Hell’s Angels in CA years ago and they were pussy cats, compared to these guys 🙂 welfare & medicare recipient abusers, corrupt politicians & their lobbyists (on the local, state and federal level) the Bernie Madoffs? Wealthy farmers & ranchers, sucking the breath out of good programs ($$ subsidies) which use to help local folk. The list goes on and on….

          Sorry for the rant.

          20 years since wolves were reintroduced back to their natural habitat around me and not one rancher has gone out of “business”

          Most are increasing their herds. A boom in in cattle prices since the US has convinced other parts of the world that “What’s for dinner? Beef!” is the way to go, regardless of the living conditions cattle go thru (after leaving the ranch) before reaching those markets.

          • Ed Loosli says:

            Nancy: Yes, the U of Wisconsin article was indeed a good read; “For scientists like Waller, who feel that the state’s large deer population has damaged diversity in general, wolves may be a biological boon. Waller notes that this agrees with the writings of Aldo Leopold, founder of the UW’s department of wildlife ecology. In his seminal essay “Thinking Like a Mountain,” Leopold wrote that, “while a buck pulled down by wolves can be replaced in two or three years, a range pulled down by too many deer may fail of replacement in as many decades.”
            Soon, we will know whether Wisconsin wolves are at their ecological carrying capacity, without human wolf hunting involved.

            • Ida Lupine says:

              I don’t understand why we are still asking ‘how do we live with them?’ Also, ‘stirring the passions’ is because they have been so irrationally treated and brutalized over hundreds of years, with very little improvement in human perception of them. That’s why people defend them so vigorously. I would ask the question ‘why are we still crazed about them?’ If it is symbolism, that is our problem, not theirs! Without the ESA, they wouldn’t be here today, and since people haven’t really changed their viewpoints about them, they still need some kind of protection. The man with his hunting dog can’t reasonably expect that the landscape be cleared of predators so that he can have an uneventful day in the woods. Can he?

              • Ed Loosli says:

                Ida: +1

                • Ida Lupine says:

                  Thank you. 🙂

                  I think there are other predators I would be much more frightened of to encounter than a wolf. Humans rank among them.

              • Ida Lupine says:

                There is no symbolism except of our own making; they are an animal like any other; no more, no less – and they are unfairly persecuted. If it can’t stop by the 21st century, when can it stop? This is why they can never be left without protection.

                Fool us once, shame on you – fool us twice, shame on us! Delisting has been an abject failure.

            • Professor Sweat says:

              This is an interesting watch about wolf politics in WI.

              • Ida Lupine says:

                Wow! Really informative. I really appreciated the majority of hunters who want and/or can tolerate wolves, and the cheese farmer who spoke about canine territories, and how once some hunters moved in and messed it up. Halfway through.

              • Nancy says:

                Thank you for posting this video Professor Sweat. Had not seen it. Well worth the watch.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Great! I’m always amazed though at the first response, always to destroy, cut down, bust right through – like the initial route of the Keystone Pipeline addition. Why can’t developers think of these things on their own? Recreation isn’t always kind to the environment either.

    • Kathleen says:

      “Some people in Lolo said the tree doesn’t leave that much of an impression on them.”
      Wow…I feel sorry for them–what a sad thing to be unable to appreciate a beautiful tree. This tree is one of the biggest and most spectacular weeping willows I’ve ever seen–ever. It’s beautiful in every season.

    • Yvette says:

      More on the efforts to overhaul the ESA: Oklahoma’s own, the biggest science denier of them all, Jim Inhofe is pushing the efforts forward.

      I swear this man must have made a pact with the devil decades ago to have gained so much power and to continue to be elected. It defies logic and he is a despicable man. He has no soul and those of us in OK that are left of fascism have had to deal with him for a long time. “Write your Congressman”? That serves no purpose here.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        This is what I mean, I don’t know why the Administration takes these kinds of politicians seriously. Negotiating with them regarding the ESA is like negotiating a nuclear weapons treaty with Iran, only with the latter, you’d have a chance of success!

        Politicians today only represent a minority of special interests, not the people.

      • Louise Kane says:

        despicable is a good word for him Yvette

  44. Louise Kane says:

    another good reason to oppose shell drilling in the arctic

  45. Louise Kane says:

    love this kind of sleaze
    using unwitting taxpayer’s money to fund agendas that amount to a loss of public resources. sleaze with a strong smell. The originators always taking a lion’s share of the funds one way or another on top of actually conceiving the dastardly deed.

  46. Louise Kane says:

    Alaska finally shuts down an area near the park to traping and hunting. Wolf population in Denali plummets to less than 50. The see saw ups and downs in wolf slaughter are tragic given what is known about carnivore ecology, wolves and wildlife management.

    • Yvette says:

      46 wolves within 6 million acres?

      What the heck is pressuring this population and why aren’t they rebounding? “Lack of rebound in population between spring 2014 and fall 2014”. But it’s not just one year. There was close to a 40% drop between 07′ and 08′ and with a steady decline since (except for 09′). Now I’m curious as to why the population is declining. Shouldn’t there be a moratorium on hunting (outside park boundaries) until they find out what is causing the decline?

      For those interested there is an interesting excel table that you can link to “Wolf Survey Data 1986-2015” on this link.

      You can see the population fluctuations and the years where there were bigger changes.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Thank goodness – wolves cannot lose protections because of the bizarre way humans react to them.

    • Barb Rupers says:

      I was pleased to see that Oregon was fairly well represented among the signers of the petition today; Idaho even had two that signed out of about 1,535 from around the world. Several from Alberta were also there; perhaps a reaction to the way wolves are treated in their province in order to save mountain caribou.

      Thanks for the link, Louise.

  47. Jeff N. says:

    120 lb. Mexican Gray Wolves….amazing.

    This article is a little dated but it has entertainment value.

    • Ralph Maughan says:

      Another example of faint-hearted fools! America the brave? There are so many like this that I have to wonder.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      I got as far as ‘said the witness, who prefers to remain anonymous’ and clicked away in disgust.

  48. Nancy says:

    Thanks Jeff N.

    Entertainment value. Guessing they’ve been on line and getting cued from the Idaho bunch 🙂

    “All I could think of was to make myself big (in spirit only because I’m only 5 foot) and pray for God’s protection”

    “There are many lies that have been told to the public the past few years about wolves – and one of the biggest is they don’t attack people. This is a falsehood.

    There haven’t been many recorded attacks in North America in the 20th century because beginning in the 1800s through the 1930s wolves were relentlessly hunted, trapped, and poisoned. The few that survived retreated far into the backwoods to avoid men.

    However, there is documented evidence that as the numbers of wolves are multiplying so too, are the wolf-human incidents. I just don’t want to see anybody get hurt because of some “experimental Mexican wolf population”.
    Maybe we should bring back tyrannosaurus rex, too. That makes about as much sense”

  49. Mareks Vilkins says:

    is there any study about a correlation between ungulate poaching and wolf depredation?

    to quote from Jim Yuskavitch’s “In Wolf Country”:

    “poachers were killing as many deer as were legal hunters in the central part of the [Oregon] state. Even more alarming, the poachers are having a far greater impact on the mule deer population because they are mainly shooting does in their reproductive prime.
    … government-suspicious locals often aren’t willing to report poachers or cooperate with wildlife law enforcement officers trying to catch them.”

    Study: Poachers kill as many deer in Oregon as hunters

    Poachers Kill More Game Animals than Wolves, North Idaho Officials Say

    • Ed Loosli says:

      Regarding the article, “Poachers Kill More Game Animals than Wolves, North Idaho Officials Say”… Since wolves and other wildlife are killed regularly by poachers, perhaps it is time to apply the same justice to human poachers. Both Botswana and Kenya have issued “shoot to kill” orders to their game rangers in the field to stop poachers in their tracks — Perhaps it is time for the U.S. to follow their lead.

      • Professor Sweat says:

        In Africa, game rangers lives are on the lines every day. Poachers there may just be looking for sustenance or are slobs looking to get their jollies, but they are also dealing with militiamen that happen to be armed with military-grade tech and are usually numerous, organized, and under orders to take ivory/meat/rhino keratin under any means necessary they can to fuel their group’s personal war efforts.

        Poachers can be anyone here in America. They can be cops, judges, doctors, etc. “Shoot to kill” is a knee-jerk reaction that would cause far too many problems in this country. It would probably also mean more court time for the game agencies, equaling more revenue wasted. Heavier fines and mandatory jail time are a more appropriate response.

    • timz says:

      These are the people we are suppose to compromise with.

      • Ed Loosli says:

        When you write, “These are the people we are suppose to compromise with.”, who are “these people” you are talking about?

        • timz says:

          the f&g people who “ushered” him off the stage and ordered his mic cut off, likely he was saying something they didn’t want to hear. And you can throw in the WY governor’s office who will offer no comment on the matter.

          • Ed Loosli says:

            timz: Thanks +1

          • WM says:

            Context is always important. It appears this gentleman from a Montana tribe was attempting to make a speech at a time not reserved for public comment, either during or shortly after a scheduled technical presentation (and this is important) ON THE WIND INDIAN RESERVATION which is in Wyoming. He was asked to stop, and when he did not the microphone was shut off.

            Don’t know whether he later spoke at the appointed time when everyone else was to be allowed to speak (his sons apparently wanted to do a chant/song, too). Big meeting and looked to be about 20+ Committee members engaged in an agenda based program, when this guy decides to speak. The guy who “escorted” him away does appear to be a bit of a rude gum chewing asshole, however.

            Guess Laura Zuckerman forgot to mention these facts -presentation on Wind River area, when some guy from Montana wants to speak out of turn- in her Reuters article.

            Could actually be a question of who was disrespecting whom at the unannounced time of his comment.
            See for yourself:


            • Yvette says:

              It was not a ‘chant’. I guess you missed the big bald guy chomping on his gum while standing in Mr. Walks Along’s face…..from the beginning.

              This ain’t over.

    • Yvette says:

      The required government to government consultation has reared it’s ugly head again. History of why it’s law:

      All agencies are legally bound in government to government consultation with tribes when the issue at hand will affect tribal interests. This is supposed to be more robust than stakeholder interests.

      Each federal agency has a policy on gov-to-gov consultation and USFWS policy can be downloaded.

      “The tribal representative who was ushered off stage at the meeting, James Walks Along, said his tribe was among more than 30 nationally that have banded together to oppose delisting and the sport hunting that may follow once the bears are stripped of federal safeguards.
      He said grizzlies hold great significance for the Northern Cheyenne.”

      It’s about time tribes start banding together. Glad to see this.

  50. Professor Sweat says:

    At least they admit human activity is at fault… Can they stop now with the culling?

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Ugh, I sure hope so. That video someone posted I believe was the Canadian government wolf cull, or part of it? The cracking bullets were just painful to hear, and the joking and nonchalance about killing was shocking.

      • Professor Sweat says:

        Psychological maladjustment. They’re no more than eleven year-olds with guns. There is no honor there.

        I hunt and have killed innocent animals so that I can eat them. I am no hypocrite. Dispatch with a single shot and consume what you kill. Hold fire unless that can be done.

        Those slobs in the clip have no business being anywhere near wildlife.

    • Immer Treue says:

      “It is thought that the recent increased in the amount and distribution of early-seral habitat has increased the abundance and distribution of moose, elk, and deer and lead to an increased in wolf numbers and distribution on caribou ranges. A similar process is believes to be threatening woodland caribou herds across Canada.”

      I’ve been saying this for the past three years. The same thing is playing out with moose in MN. Deer managed for the highest possible yield through the 2000’s, wolf population goes up, moose go down.


      • Professor Sweat says:

        Not to mention increased tick loads and creation of more vectors for diseases in these situations, coupled with habitat loss and climate destabilization. It’s like the perfect storm for the more vulnerable of the ungulate species.

        I can already hear those organs in my head.

  51. Ida Lupine says:

    Who is so adamant about delisting grizzlies anyway? Every article I read, it’s an outfitter(s). Not scientists, and with a personal interest. I hope Mr. Walks Along was allowed to speak at the specified time.

    With an isolated population and food supplies in question, is it really time for delisting?

    • Yvette says:

      Ida, it’s really not about him being allowed to speak. It’s about federal agencies complying with federal law on government to government consultation. It appears USFWLS’s grizzly ‘czar’ Christopher Servheen has lied.

      Dr. Servheen previously stated that he had written to all of the affected tribes, but disclosures subsequently revealed that Servheen had only written to four of the affected tribes in April 2014.

      “I know for a fact that three out of the four tribal chairmen Servheen wrote to never had sight of his letter,” says Sara Atiqtalik, GOAL Tribal Coalition’s national coordinator.

      Besides, a letter to the tribal chairman is not the consultation required by law.

      USFWS’s grizzly czar appears to be p*ssing off quite a few tribes. Now two of Oklahoma’s largest and most influential tribes are passing resolutions and speaking out on the failure to consult and Dr. Servheen’s lies about that process.

      The coalition has grown to 33 tribal nations, including all of the tribes of the Great Sioux Nation, the 315,000 strong Cherokee Nation, and the nations that comprise the Rocky Mountain Tribal Leaders Council.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        I should have said had the opportunity to speak. I’m sure glad that other people will have input, not just the hunters and outfitters.

        • Ed Loosli says:

          What makes you think that, “other people will have input, not just the hunters and outfitters.”? Just because U.S. federal law and treaty obligations with Native American tribes calls for equal consultations about issues of mutual concerns, does not mean that Dan Ashe has any intention of following the law or treaty obligations. Dan Ashe and his boss Sally Jewell are on a fast-track to de-list the Yellowstone ecosystem grizzly bear, and it seems they will allow no-one to get in their way.

          • Ida Lupine says:

            It does seem that way. It’s terrible. 🙁 I wonder what their plans are for other wildlife, and I was reading the other day about two native flowers in the Unita basin, the only place they grow in the country, how they had a miraculous turn-around recovery, as the sage grouse, in no longer needing ESA protections. It’s an oil shale energy site.

            • Ed Loosli says:

              I think the reason the Obama administration is so against listing species that should be listed and why they want to de-list so many species that should stay listed (like the Yellowstone ecosystem grizzly) is wrapped up in LEGACY POLITICS and it has nothing to do do with the Endangered Species Act or science. Dan Ashe, Sally Jewell and President Obama are coming to the end of their public carriers and they want their legacy to show all the animals they were able to “bring back from the brink of extinction and so were able to declare them ‘saved’ and in no further need to be listed as Endangered Species.” They refuse to list new species for the same reasons – It might tarnish their “legacy” by showing that wildlife health and diversity might be going in the wrong direction under their watch. It’s all about their own personal egos and what people will say about their record when they leave public office. It’s hard to believe that these three important public officials are so self-centered that they would put their own personal legacy ahead of science, the law and the public interest, but I think that is the case. Hopefully, they will prove me wrong, but I am not holding my breath.

              • Ed Loosli says:

                Here we go again – USFWS to “de-list” Louisiana black bear


                “The Obama administration has removed more species from the endangered and threatened lists than any before it, Interior said.”
                And, they should add, “whether the species are actually recovered or not”. Stay tuned for more of these de-listings and failures to list over the next year and a half before Pres. Obama leaves office.

                • Ida Lupine says:

                  I think they are all just ecologically clueless, all about the people’s immediate needs. Long term, we still have to be concerned with clean air, clean water, and healthy food. The environment and wildlife are not a priority for them. To say ‘there’s plenty in Canada’ (Ashe)as if to say that we can turn the lower 48 into an industrial dumping ground and ‘some places are just too special for drilling’ and open up areas in a hurricane zone to offshore drilling such as the priceless Chesapeake Bay and Outer Banks, Georgia and Florida leave me speechless. And Congress has been a big obstacle for just about everything. Kids and everyone need more accessible nature than ‘going to Canada or Alaska’. Their home turf ought to be valued for more than drilling and fracking.

                  But now is not the time to cave – giving the states more involvement means they’ll hold up endangered species listings for years, until an animal or plant disappears. Is that the ‘sacrifices’ we are supposed to make?

                • Louise Kane says:

                  The worst part to me is that when a species seems to be doing well then someone champions hunting as if other living beings are here just to hunt. The black bear is hunted in Florida now for the first time in 20 years. I wonder what it would be like to have to worry about being shot or bow and arrowed abruptly or losing your child or other family member to a hunters arrow or bullet. With so many people on this planet and so few animals seems time to rethink the “right” to kill as a form of recreation.

          • Yvette says:

            I agree, Ed, but with tribes joining forces it helps illuminate the failure on USFWS’s part to follow federal law regarding appropriate consultation and then lying about it. Generally, tribes haven’t joined forces to a degree where it’s empowered us. Right now there are 33 tribes standing with the affected tribes. And that was before the Chairman of the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee and the other guy entered the stage to remove Walks Along.

            The aggression shown by the bald guy chomping on the gum in that video isn’t going to bode well, especially following Servheen’s attempt to circumvent the government to government compliance.

            Let’s see how things progress.

      • WM says:

        Once again, something to remember. The ESA is an avoid “risk of extinction” law, not a please the public or tribes, whoever they are or wherever they might be law. So, that will ultimately be the test for delisting.

        And, while some tribes will be/should be consulted for input (even if that consultation appears deficient to some), it would seem unlikely “spiritual importance” would ultimately be part of the risk of extinction test under the law.

        If FWS kept grizzlies listed solely for “spiritual reasons” of one group, some opposing group like the Rocky Mountain States Legal Foundation might, by analogy, say that is a bit like the federal government endorsing/funding a manger or creche scene on federal land at Christmas time. And, wouldn’t that be an interesting alliance with the ACLU and RMSL siding with states on the same issue and against certain tribes wanting to keep grizzlies listed based on religious/spiritual grounds? Just sayin’.

        And, for the record, I would like grizzlies to stay listed to see if social carrying capacity will be high enough to allow more on the landscape without significant bear-human safety conflicts.

        • JB says:

          In the next few months I should be able to report with some accuracy on what scientists think regarding the appropriate listing status of grizzly bears.

        • Yvette says:

          “(even if that consultation appears deficient to some),”

          It’s not about whether the government to government consultation is deficient ‘to some’; it’s about whether the agency is in compliance with the law. There is over a 100 years of case law to support my statement.

          The United State’s obligation to consult with tribal nations is not a new mandate. The federal obligation for government to government consultation arises from numerous federal statutes, federal regulations and presidential orders; case law and international legal norms. They date back close to 200 years.

          A boilerplate letter to several tribes, informal communication with a tribal
          member or staffer, or a single meeting with a tribe, is not meaningful consultation. A
          federal fait accompli is not meaningful consultation. (see Lower Brule, 911 F. Supp. at 401.)

          What the grizzly ‘czar’ tried to pull off is not going to work for consultation. IMO, I believe you comprehend this as you live in Indian Country and you are an attorney.

          Whether the grizzly is delisted or not is a separate matter, but the tribes will be consulted. If not, USFWS will risk valid legal delays, and after the hostile and aggressive treatment of Mr. Walks Along by the committee chairman, most definitely, a political loss as this incident gains traction.

          • WM says:


            Maybe there are some things we don’t know yet about the “consultation” process. Perhaps WHEN it is required in a timeline of alternative proposals is a starting point for compliance. And, it is important to acknowledge no formal decision has been made for delisting, and no draft delisting regulation has yet been published. Not sure what consultation means in the case of a proposed delisting, with hearings and all. It is also my understanding there is direct tribal participation on several of the IGBC ecosystem subcommittees. But, again, consultation does not necessarily mean doing what a particular interest group wants. And, again, the “spiritual” aspect of grizzly bears, or wolves for that matter, are potentially different considerations than “risk of extinction” under the ESA. Those interests are more likely addressed under the American Indian Religious Freedom Act (AIRFA, PL 95-341 enacted in 1978). So, what to do when the ESA butts up against this statute?

            It would appear the Department of Interior responded back in February about the “consultation” issue. This, of course, precedes Mr. Walks Along’s recent impromptu speech before the IGBC. Perhaps he was planning a scene all along.

            You might consider that some of the information on this matter is filtered a bit as it appears in various media – and why not? It makes for a great rallying point if you only tell half the truth to those who are looking for just enough to advance their own agenda.

            In the words of bureaucrat speak:

            February FWS letter –

            April FWS Letter –

            And, I just wonder if the Wind River tribes, especially the ones running livestock for profit, are too excited about grizzlies there? Did they sign the “consultation” letter?

            • Leslie says:

              WM and Yvette, I was there at the 2 day meeting. First yes the Wind River reservation is represented on the committee and both Arapaho and Shoshone tribal reps stated their opposition to delisting. As far as Mr. Walks Along, I personally feel this video is being blown out of proportion as a political ploy as he was simply out of order, asked several times politely to sit down as he would have his chance to speak at a later time. When he ignored their continued requests, they had to cut off his mike, which seemed to them as their only option. Basically it was just a bunch of officials at a meeting following their set protocol. Whether that protocol was necessary, good, or bad, is another story. No comments were being taken by the public till the end and as he was not on the committee, he was public. He did have an opportunity during public comments to speak and did so eloquently. On the other hand, there was a blatantly racist comment made by a public person, and I felt a very patronizing speech by a white government official who works with the tribes. So racist undertones were here and there, but I personally didn’t feel the Walks Along incident was one of them. But I am not a political animal, and using this video politically is, I suppose, the name of the game.

              • WM says:


                Thanks! Objective input on some of these issues is important. Contemporaneously with the agreement in opposition to grizzly delisting by both Wind River tribes, there appears to be some unrest between them. The 2.5 times larger by tribal enrollment, Northern Arapaho have recently withdrawn from the Joint Business Council with the Eastern Shoshone that oversees many reservation activities, though each tribe remains autonomous as a sovereign there. The Northern Arapaho run cattle on the reservation, and have a tribal business that does the same. The Joint wolf management plan (which now might have implications from the dissolution of the JBC) calls for wolves to managed as a game animal with hunting/trapping according to whatever rules the tribes decide when wolves are delisted in WY. As I understand it, the reservation wolves don’t count toward whatever ESA numbers WY is ultimately obligated to maintain for delisting. This, once again, would seem to be a potential aspect of undercount for wolves in WY. One might wonder how things will ultimately develop for both wolves, and later grizzlies if and when the tribe(s)decide they could be a risk to humans or tribal livestock assets.

              • Yvette says:

                Thank you so much, Leslie. It’s good to hear the perspective from someone that was present. Thank you!

                • Yvette says:

                  Adding one thing: the incident at this meeting with Mr. Walks Along is a separate issue from compliance of tribal consultation and what a government to government consultation is and is not.

              • Elk375 says:

                Mr. Walks Alone sounds like Kane West at the Grammy’s. Speaking out of turn and interrupting the program.

  52. Nancy says:

    A short, great video to watch on “hump day”

  53. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Why India’s tiger census is misleading
    “With just 25% of world’s tiger habitat, India shelters 70% of its tigers. In a country with 1.2 billion people and the world’s 10th largest economy this is a remarkable fact. So when the Indian government recently trumpeted a 30% rise in its wild population of one of the world’s most popular animals, everyone cheered. But is that number real – or even useful?”
    I hope Mr.Putin does better with his census of the Amur Tiger Population…..

  54. Yvette says:

    It looks like Bend, OR may be trying to devise a better plan on how to handle dispersing cougars.

    Maybe they should look at how California is handling the issue.

  55. Ida Lupine says:

    Got to give California credit. Look at those gorgeous feet on the lion! In years to come, with human populations continuing to grow and encroach on what’s left of our wild spaces, we have to come up with a better solution than just killing wildlife and having a zero tolerance policy! The people were thrilled to have saved this lion. We need to protect wild habitat more.

    • Ed Loosli says:

      Ida: Yes, California is certainly taking the lead in mt. lion protections… In 1990 California voters banned sport/trophy hunting of mt. lions and now Californians are trying to get bobcats added to this special protected list.

  56. Gary Humbard says:

    The City of Boulder, Colorado has been pro-active in minimizing bear and cougar conflicts with humans. I e-mailed their plan to the City of Bend.

  57. Louise Kane says:

    ignore climate change evidence at such a great risk

  58. Ed Loosli says:

    Eastern Shoshone leadership on the Wind River Reservation oppose grizzly bear delisting

    Nov. 9, 2014: Leaders of the Eastern Shoshone Tribe said they oppose any U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decision to remove grizzly bears from the endangered species list. “The Eastern Shoshone Tribe will not permit the State of Wyoming to inflict its policies on Eastern Shoshone tribal lands,” the Eastern Shoshone Business Council wrote in a release Thursday. “The leadership on the Wind River Indian Reservation rejected proposals to permit the trophy hunting of wolves on our land when the wolf was delisted from the ESA, and we hold that same position in relation to the grizzly bear.”

  59. Louise Kane says:

    Ed Read William Cronin’s Changes in the Land to see how European settlers viewed land as property with total ownership as opposed to Native Americans who moved with the land operating on the premise that it could not be owned. I don’t recall how they viewed resources but I’m betting not as separate from their sphere of life to be depleted and “managed” to death, or thought of as a sport to kill for fun.

  60. Louise Kane says:

    Knowlton took his 350K flew to Namibia, hired trackers and made his quest to kill a back rhino sound as if he was in mortal danger. The whole concept of conservation hunting is nauseous. What would that 350K buy say if was donated to Big Life, a whole lot of anti poaching equipment, salaries for rangers. outreach about poaching. You gotta want to kill a whole lot to pay 350 to kill an old bull that outwitted poachers and other threats to survive in a harsh environment such as this. Entitled wretch.

    • Nancy says:

      Thanks for posting this Louise, rare insight into what these wealthy boys, with too much money, do with it.

      “And the killing of an older rhino bull, which no longer contributes to the gene pool but which could harm or kill younger males, is part of the science of conservation, he argues”

      Interesting comment. No further information about just how those old bulls have managed to remain alive, in a human laced, hunting world, aching for their heads, horns, etc.

      “Silence is vital when you’re tracking a black rhino” I’ve got sagebrush higher on the hillside next to me, compared to what these wimps had to go thru.

      This was a controlled hunt, took place on a reserve if I’m not mistaken?

      “I felt like from day one it was something benefiting the black rhino,” Knowlton reflected just moments after the hunt ended. “Being on this hunt, with the amount of criticism it brought and the amount of praise it brought from both sides, I don’t think it could have brought more awareness to the black rhino.”

      Yet, bagging this rhino, amounted to one less critically endangered species on the planet.

      Will there be some documentation/money trail available, down the path that lead to this rhino’s death, or will the close to half a million, just end up in the pockets of a few officials in the government there, conveniently in on this “planned hunt” from the start?

      Knowlton’s $350,000 will go to fund government anti-poaching efforts across the country. And the killing of an older rhino bull, which no longer contributes to the gene pool but which could harm or kill younger males, is part of the science of conservation, he argues.

      Not rocket science to realize, we are slowly approaching that same simple mind set in this country, when it comes to the “Trophy Minded” few, with LOTS of cash on hand and the folks who have no problem, prostituting them selves, making those fantasies happen.

      • Yvette says:

        If you want to see where this kid came from, here is an article on his dad, the Texas oilman. Looks like the dad made built the business from scratch. Tough business all the way around, so success is limited by morals and ethics. Either you crush other people or you crush the environment and habitats, likely it is usually both.

        As a reminder of how the wealthy compare to the mid to lower income folks on empathy,

        I wonder what a physiological, or even, a sociological study would show about on the empathy level of sport, and big game hunters.

        • Nancy says:

          “We hope that Lary and his family continue to enjoy success and safety in all of their endeavors, as well as receiving the recognition and respect of their peers”

        • Ida Lupine says:

          I don’t know if I can delineate people with such a broad brush. It depends on the individual. Having grown up ‘less than wealthy’, I can assure you that the stereotype scumbag of the lower classes with no heart, soul, ethics or empathy does exist – and that sometimes the wealthy are well aware of their good fortune and are willing to give back, and are good people.

          At the intersections, today it doesn’t matter whether it’s a Mercedes or a crapbox – everybody just goes for him or herself.

    • Immer Treue says:

      ” You gotta want to kill a whole lot to pay 350 to kill an old bull that outwitted poachers and other threats to survive in a harsh environment such as this. Entitled wretch.”


  61. Louise Kane says:

    reforms by asking the state agencies that fail the species in the first place

    • Ida Lupine says:

      If what’s happening with the sage grouse (or not happening) is any indication of state cooperation, this environmentally clueless Administration should not be allowed anywhere near tampering with the ESA. The gall to think they could improve upon it. It won’t be enough for the GOP anyway, a gradual chipping away will mean its demise. “The people” are fine with current transparency and decisions based in science, but the big business cronies are not.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        Then again, ‘the people’ would like a little more ‘transparency’ as to what is happening with industrial wind farms and their 30-year (3 decade) incidental take permits and exemptions for established bird protections laws, and the wind industry self-monitoring and self-reporting! We’d like to know how many birds are being killed.

        • Ida Lupine says:

          that should read ‘exemptions from long-established bird protection laws’.

  62. Ed Loosli says:

    The Shocking Amount of Water That Goes Into an 8-oz. Steak – VIDEO

    “A single beef cattle eats 451 gallons worth of water in its feed each day. Then there’s 5 gallons a day of drinking and cleaning water. That ads up to 499,021 gallons over the course of its lifetime.”

  63. Louise Kane says:

    Imagine, social creatures fare better when that are in a pack situation….

  64. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Mexican grey wolf killed after displaying concerning behavior

    A Mexican grey wolf has been shot and killed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife service after showing concerning behavior around people.

    • Nancy says:

      It sounds to me as though there may be a problem with this program. 2 killed and 23 wolves had to be moved concerning behavior around people? Are they being raised in a situation where they have become too comfortable & familiar with their human care takers?

      • Peter Kiermeir says:

        Yes, I think they are raised in an environment too close to humans. This could well be an underlying basic problem with the project.

        • Yvette says:

          What I find curious is there were multiple incidents of the wolf watching people, but no attacks and the article didn’t state that the wolf showed aggressive behavior toward those he was watching.

          I think Peter and Nancy are probably right. It will take people that know wolf behavior and that are unbiased to figure out the situation. If it is that the wolves are too acclimated to humans because of the way they were raised and proximity to humans I hope they will correct it. There are so few Mexican greys.

          • Ida Lupine says:

            You don’t think there is pressure from the surrounding community? Or that they are not biased? These animals are being raised by people who know wolves and are unbiased. It shouldn’t be any different than any other program with established protocols. This is the general area where they just canceled a permit for no reason. If it is one thing I cannot abide it is repeated excuses being made for well established opposition to this program.

      • Ralph Maughan says:


        I doubt there is anything wrong with the program. After reading the description about what happened, I suspect the wolf was interested in the dogs. No information was given about the other 23 wolves, but in almost every case I know about when a lone wolf hangs around a farm and does not kill livestock, it is interested in a dog or dogs. Most trail encounters where a wolf seems persistent also involve a dog.

        We are so self-centered that we believe that if a wolf is nearby we must be the focus of its interest.

        • Nancy says:


          “Mexican wolves are ‘routinely’ transferred among the zoos and other SSP holding facilities in order to facilitate genetic exchange, thus maintaining the health and genetic diversity of the captive population”

          “Mexican wolves from captive SSP facilities that are subsequently identified for potential release are first sent to one of three pre-release facilities to be evaluated for release suitability and to undergo an acclimation process”

          “Mexican wolves are acclimated prior to release to the wild in U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service approved facilities designed to house wolves in a manner that fosters wild characteristics and behaviors”

          My question, again, would be – how many times are they “man” handled, till they get to a facility that “fosters wild characteristics and behaviors”

          Dutcher’s wolves (that were raised in such a facility) were, if I’m not mistaken, not allowed to return to the wild – too much human contact.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      I think that they are just trying to appease/accommodate the wolf haters, which is impossible. A professional team would take care and have protocols on how animals are raised and reintroduced, I have no doubt about that.

      It is widely known that this area does not/did not want wolves reintroduced, and it is a mistake to try to appease them, because nothing will work. A wolf who is just there and looks at someone sideways (which is subjective interpretation) should not be shot and killed. The ‘they have no fear of man’ ridiculousness. Maybe the poor wolf is/was just curious.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        ^^The vague, perceived threat justification for shooting – and I guess wildlife officials have to go along with it. Some of the Rocky Mountain states have added that to their laws (MT?), and I guess the Southwest does too? In order to keep the program.

      • Susan Armstrong says:

        “Officials say in one instance he watched a young man fishing along a creek, stood just 15 feet away and refused to move. . . . The wolf also stood just 10 to 25 yards from a 2-year-old boy near his home when he went to feed the dogs.”

        If these reports are accurate, IMO this is just not a safe situation – it’s sad but I can quite understand why they took this action. A normal wild wolf has a whole lot more wariness of people.

        I wonder if somebody in the area has been feeding this wolf deliberately, reinforcing the tendency to boldly hang around…

        • Ralph Maughan says:


          It might be safe, but given our lack of understanding of wolf behavior we will always think it is not safe. The wolf has to go.

        • WM says:

          Strikes me that “safe” might be a somewhat objective term. A group of 3 or people may very well be safe. A 150-200 pound person might be safe, too. A child under 100 pounds running away might not be “safe.” So how does one plan for one and not the other.

          I would suggest enough is known about wolf behavior to reasonably make such predictions, especially if hunger or maybe somebody is accompanied by a dog that might result in a challenge. It might be The wolf has to go. Actually, I think Dr. Geist said that several years ago outlining certain behaviors, specifically referencing personal experiences from his home on Vancouver Island – but then, he’s an anti-wolf guy according to some. To others he is a trained behavioral ecologist, who focused on prey animals in the presence of wolves for something like 50 years.

          • Ida Lupine says:

            Maybe the kid could just go back in the house.

            • Ed Loosli says:

              Ida: +1

            • Nancy says:

              “The wolf also stood just 10 to 25 yards from a 2-year-old boy near his home when he went to feed the dogs”

              Ida – I’m still trying to wrap my mind around a parent allowing a 2 year old child, to go out and feed the dogs and were the dogs a lot more concerned about getting a decent meal than noticing a wolf, standing 25 yards away?

              So much information goes sideways when it comes to wolves/predators and their reactions to humans/dogs/livestock, etc. in the west, especially when it comes to young wolves or other predators dispersing.

              Remember Romeo?

              A couple of years ago a ranch manager nearby, was shocked to see a wolf playing with his cow dogs. I’ve seen coyotes playing tag with cow dogs from local ranches, its not that unusual.

              Its been interesting for me this past year, watching my two feral cats interact with my chickens, when the chickens gained more and more territory into “their” territory even though these two cats have been around these chickens since they were babies.

              “Surprise and then scatter” (a game with the cats) has be the norm but now, the chickens are not so easily scattered and the cats have realized that fact, especially when I’m sitting close by.

              A lesson here for livestock raisers when it comes to predators?

              Course that depends on the rancher’s mindset – at almost $3 grand for a cow/calf pair these days, does a rancher want to spend money on protecting their investment (range rider, better fencing, etc.) or buy a new truck, tractor, take the family on a nice vacation 🙂 and bank on Wildlife Services?

              It’s complicated but wildlife continues to pay the price…..

              • Ida Lupine says:

                I didn’t realize the child was that young – why are they out unsupervised feeding dogs? I guess people don’t have to take any responsibility.

                I remember reading about Romeo. I certainly understand why in rare instances it might be necessary to shoot a predator, but these gleeful potshots are just plain sick, IMO. I really enjoyed hearing about the farmer in WI who was doing quite well living with predators because of her dogs.

                It’s interesting, the cats and chickens, how animals we’ve been told don’t get along often times do! 🙂

              • Louise Kane says:

                and why was the wolf killed and not returned to the facility for its genetics or retrained to stay from humans and dogs. Killing it seems radical and reactionary

          • Susan Armstrong says:

            I don’t consider myself anything remotely like an expert however I’d like to say that I am partly – but only partly – basing my comments on my personal experience with both habitated and unhabituated wolves.

            I am one of the most pro-wolf people around, in fact most of you would describe me as an animal rights type. But in order to forestall a possible incident which would set back by decades the hard-won cause of wolf recovery and conservation – and thus, lead to far more deaths of typical harmless wolves out there… in order to forestall that, the sacrifice of this too-bold wild wolf is sadly justified IMO. (As I said above, this assumes that these incidents were accurately reported)

            Wolves are one of the world’s best studied species and we do have a comparatively good understanding of what is typical behaviour for an unhabituated wild wolf.

            The reason wild wolves are so remarkably harmless to humans in North America (and most places) is that they are afraid of us, in the sense of extreme wariness.

            IMO a wolf that stands 15 feet away from a person and “refuses to move” (presumably after gestures or sounds are made in its direction urging it to move) can be considered habituated.

            I feel safe as houses in the territory of unhabituated wild wolves because they regard humans as unsafe animals and they have a powerful drive to stay well clear of people.

            I would feel unsafe around this particular wild wolf as described. Well, not really unsafe on my own behalf, because I feel I have the confidence to have a good chance of controlling the situation. But I would feel it was abnormal and unsafe for this wolf to be regarding humans in general as “not scary”.

            I’m not saying anyone on this board thinks this way, but: there’s a bit of a myth in our society that habituated wild animals are “friendly” in a human sense. They are not – they’re simply unafraid.

            We would consider a wild bear or cougar that exhibited the described behaviour to be potentially dangerous and it would be removed and most likely killed. Why consider a wolf differently?

            I think somebody said above that there may be husbandry issues which lead to some released Mexican wolves being human-habituated – surely this is being looked at very carefully now.

            If this wolf was taken back into captivity as someone suggested, realistically it would have to remain there for life. Is that really what we want – continued life at any cost? This wolf has been able to lead a wild existence for which it evolved, fulfilling all its natural behaviour patterns. Is putting it back in a cage really better than ending its life? Not all would agree.

            My $0.02 CDN.

            • Ed Loosli says:

              Susan Armstrong:
              IMO, wild predators can be used to humans and not particularly afraid of them without being “dangerous”. A wolf, bear, lion that is habituated to humans in their midst and is not being aggressive toward a person close by does not deserve to be killed. There are non-lethal ways to move predators out of a person’s personal space and I agree with Louise Kane that in this case it was “radical and reactionary” to resort to killing the wolf.
              My goodness, in Kenya where predators are not hunted, people can be within 15 feet of lions, hyenas, leopards and cheetahs in open safari vehicles and within about 200ft on foot without having to kill them because they are “habituated” to humans. Some cheetahs even have learned to climb up on the hoods of open safari vehicles to get a better view of THEIR territory – Should these cheetahs and other predators be killed because they are “unafraid” of humans?

              • Susan Armstrong says:

                “people can be within 15 feet of lions, hyenas, leopards and cheetahs in open safari vehicles and within about 200ft on foot ”

                The people in the wolf incidents were not in a group in vehicles. They were single individuals on foot, a few yards away from the wolf (not 200 feet away). Quite a different situation.

                A group of people in a vehicle, including a professional driver who knows the local animals well (and may be armed), is a fairly controlled situation. Above all, these people don’t look vulnerable. A bunch of confident adults in a vehicle, looking the cheetah in the face? – nope. No weakness here.

                I am betting the driver tells people not to get out of the car, though. Animals can react quite differently to people in cars and out of them. (I don’t mean they necessarily get aggressive. On the contrary I’ve read that often animals will tolerate people much closer inside a vehicle than if they step out of it.)

            • Professor Sweat says:

              “I feel safe as houses in the territory of unhabituated wild wolves because they regard humans as unsafe animals and they have a powerful drive to stay well clear of people.

              I would feel unsafe around this particular wild wolf as described. Well, not really unsafe on my own behalf, because I feel I have the confidence to have a good chance of controlling the situation. But I would feel it was abnormal and unsafe for this wolf to be regarding humans in general as “not scary.”

              There is nothing to be afraid of is the wolf is not displaying any aggressive posturing (arched back, bared teeth, tail tucked between legs). They are highly intelligent creatures and are quite curious about other creatures in their territories. Just because a wolf might be unafraid of certain hazing techniques, doesn’t mean it sees any human as a food source or an intruder/threat. It’s very disappointing that this wolf was killed, when it had done no harm.

              BTW, any parent who lets a two year-old go outside alone is either on drugs or extremely naive.

              • Susan Armstrong says:

                “There is nothing to be afraid of is the wolf is not displaying any aggressive posturing (arched back, bared teeth, tail tucked between legs).”

                Wolves considering predation do not do any of those things. Different set of behaviours altogether.

                • Professor Sweat says:

                  Luckily humans aren’t on the menu for wolves, since we aren’t their prey. There’s a better chance that you’d win the lottery and then immediately be struck by lightning than to be attacked and eaten by a hungry wolf.

  65. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Farmers and ranchers in southern New Mexico are now suing the federal government over its jaguar program.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      I knew this was just a matter of time also.

    • Yvette says:

      I was curious about the claim the farmers and ranchers made about there not being any jaguars in that region. I remembered there being an incident of a snared male jaguar being killed because of the trapping, but didn’t remember details. I did a quick search and found a paper that would probably refute the farmers and rancher’s claims. The researcher is big cat biologist Emil McCain.

      Who remembers the sordid incident surrounding the killing of Macho B., the male jaguar that traveled into the U.S. as part of his territory?

      The following AZ Republic news article is informative on the incident with Macho B., and the lead biologist is E. McCain.

      At this point, I don’t know that anyone could decipher the truth. I sure would like to see jaguars protected. Apparently, at least one of them has definitely had territory in the U.S.

  66. Mareks Vilkins says:

    Family Tree of Dogs and Wolves Is Found to Split Earlier Than Thought

    Based on the differences between the genome of the new species, called the Taimyr wolf, and the genomes of modern wolves and dogs, the researchers built a family tree that shows wolves and dogs splitting much earlier than the 11,000 to 16,000 years ago that a study in 2014 concluded.

    Their study also gives some dog-park bragging rights to owners of Siberian huskies and Greenland sled dogs, which have inherited a portion of their genes from the Taimyr wolf.

    The history of dogs is still murky, however, because it seems that different kinds of wolves and dogs have interbred at different times in different places over the past tens of thousands of years.

  67. Mareks Vilkins says:

    Roaming Elk at Point Reyes Bedevil Ranchers in California

    Ranchers complain that these elk trample their fences, feed on drought-limited forage and drink precious water meant for milk cows.

    “There are ranchers who are literally on the brink of losing their operations because of the lack of forage and the damage from the elk,” said Jeffrey Creque, who farmed at Point Reyes for 25 years and now works on agricultural ecology projects.

    The die-off in the elk refuge and the flourishing of the free-roaming flocks have rekindled a dispute over management of these majestic creatures found only in California, where they were half a million strong before the Gold Rush.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Ranchers complain that these elk trample their fences, feed on drought-limited forage and drink precious water meant for milk cows.

      Wow. Water and forage only meant for cows. Scary.

    • Ed Loosli says:

      The “ranchers” at Pt. Reyes Nat. Seashore use water and forage that is owned NOT by them, but by the National Park Service. The NPS primary mission is to preserve and protect it’s natural resources, which in this case include the native California tule elk. These lease-holders are free-loaders of the worse sort, and either they should share the Park land with elk, or they should get out.

      • Leslie says:

        I have never understood this arrangement. In WY ranchers can be compensated for private private forage eaten by wildlife. Marin Agricultural Land Trust, or MALT, is critical to preserving West Marin as open space but why can’t elk roam on these lands as well?

        • Ed Loosli says:

          The lease holding ranchers at Pt. Reyes Nat. Seashore are already being compensated by the Nat. Park Service for forage eaten by wildlife (like elk). The Nat. Park Service requires that the ranchers pay only about $7 per head of cattle in an area where the grazing fees on private land are closer to $20. For only about $24,000 per year these lease holders get 1,000 acres of California coastal property – including a house and outbuildings. This is the same price that a two-bedroom apartment rents for in Marin County that has NO land.
          As for the MALT lands; they are only involved with private open lands preservation and as their name implies (Agriculture), they favor cows over native wildlife, like elk.

          • Leslie says:

            Ed, thanks for that info as I did not know that. Of course, it’s absurd they are complaining on public lands about wildlife eating forage and taking water. Even ‘enlightened’ Marin County has its backwaters. I knew MALT is private lands and has been a great force in preserving what would absolutely be housing developments. Here in WY private ranchers are compensated for elk eating their forage. Why not there too?

            • Ed Loosli says:

              Although much better than most states regarding wildlife protections, all is not perfect in California. For example, native tule elk are generally NOT permitted to be on private property because the CA Dept. of Fish and Wildlife is afraid that the private land owners will not allow hunting of the elk. The CA Dept. of F & W has even nixed tule elk being returned to 70,000 acre Vandenberg Air Force Base along California’s central coast because the Air Force did not want to open up this high-security base to public hunting. Unfortunately, hunters still control the actions of the staff of the CA F&W and this is definitely hurting the expansion of native elk herds.

        • Helen McGinnis says:

          The purpose of MALT is to preserve ranches and farms as open space, to prevent them from being developed. They are still managed as private ranches and farms.

    • Ralph Maughan says:


      “Roaming Elk at Point Reyes Bedevil Ranchers in California.” !!

      Why not just the opposite? The ranchers bedevil the elk.

      If you read the NYT article, please also read, or read instead “Cattle Grazing Is Incompatible with Conservation [at Pt. Reyes]”
      by Karen Klitz and Jeff Miller.

    • Ed Loosli says:

      Yvette: I hope the people of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia are getting ready for similar disasters – or worse, because Pres. Obama wants to allow the oil companies to drill off their coasts as soon as possible.

  68. Ida Lupine says:

    Yes, it looks like such an insurmountable task to clean it up.

    “Plains Pipeline, the large Texas-based company responsible for the pipe that ruptured in Santa Barbara County, has accumulated 175 safety and maintenance infractions since 2006, according to federal records.”

    So much for learning from the BP disaster, and safety assurances from the Interior!

    Santa Barbara Oil Spill: Pipeline Operator Has Long Record of Problems

    • Louise Kane says:

      oil spill clean up is always an insurmountable task and you can never really get rid of the oil or the damage it does no matter how many chemicals you disperse or the conditions.

  69. Ed Loosli says:

    Making Nice: A Battle Cry for Biological Diversity by Lisa Novick

    “This reluctance to actively consider something that causes cognitive dissonance [like the term ‘bioequivalent’] or necessitates reappraisal of our actions is reprehensible. This reluctance is the death knell of countless species and ecosystems on Earth that we have come to love and are loathe to imagine the world without…Besides pharmaceutical-industry drugs, there’s only bioequivalent bullshit, and making nice becomes more and more irresponsible with every species we lose. Making nice will yield only tragedy. We need to agitate, adopt the Singapore Protocol for Biodiversity and make native habitat everywhere we can for the wild creatures that have managed to survive despite our near total alteration of the biosphere. Our descendants will thank us for not making nice, because we determine the world they inherit.”

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Ha! 🙂 This made me think of that poor wolf in the Southwest who was shot for looking at someone the wrong way. I’m glad throwing a side-eye isn’t a shooting offense for me, because I’d be in trouble a long time ago.

      I should say that the photo for this thread is very beautiful.

      • Barb Rupers says:

        You beat me to it, Ida; I was just ready to do that.

        I spent about a month at Leadore during a high school summer interlude. The sage country was entirely different from my experience around Moscow ID.

        • Ida Lupine says:

          You’re lucky! I have not seen the sage country. I’m going to make it a point to do so.

          Nearly June, and it is snowing in Caribou, ME. Can you believe it? 🙂

  70. Yvette says:

    I think this is a fantastic project. Dr. Marc Bekoff is teaching an animal behavior class at the Boulder County Jail. Great response from inmates.

  71. Nancy says:

    This story is a little confusing, the nest was destroyed but what happened to the parents? Would think even on the ground, they would of continued to try and care for the baby.

  72. Immer Treue says:

    Another dog mistaken for wolf, and shot in Idaho.

    Problem here, wolf season was over, and father told son to shoot the wolf.
    Can’t hide behind McKittrick here. Time for this bullshit to end.

    • WM says:

      Clearly not a defense of this guy or his impressionable son, but a data point for confusion.

      A husky(and even a German shepherd) might be confused for a wolf by some. Hollywood was doing that for years, using these trainable breeds and putting a little spray paint or grease to change the color and hair texture to make them look ever more wolf-like. Teach them to snarl a bit on command. So maybe there are subliminal clues of “this animal looks like what I think a wolf looks like.”

      I used to have a Siberian Husky with intense blue eyes and heavy dark masking on the face in the late 1980’s. A Siberian’s tail doesn’t curl over like a Malamute. Got a lot of queries – is he part wolf?

      Query, was an Idaho wildlife law actually broken in this instance? Shot somebody’s dog thinking it was a wolf, even out of season? It seems unlikely, but maybe reckless endangerment or shooting over a roadway would stick.

      No doubt the civil suit for damages will be forthcoming from the owner of the dogs. Will the family get justice for loss of a valued family companion – or just the FMV for the dog and any vet bills? This happened in Idaho, so not much hope for any kind of $$$ damages recovery that might serve as a deterrent from some idiots doing this in the future.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        For the sake of argument, even if it were thought to be a wolf, there was no danger presented, and it was not hunting season. Maybe the man’s poor dogs presented a perceived threat. These two can try to convince a judge that they were quavering in their boots in fear. Maybe the kid’s old man ought to be cited for contributing to the delinquency of a minor?

      • Immer Treue says:

        I just find it so sad that another case of trigger itch, and what may be assumed as a member of the SSS fraternity (why else, with wolf season over for 1.5 months did individual tell his son to shoot the wolf), and another dog owner loses their pet. Where is the indignation about wolves killing pets, when someone with a gun, not only out of season misidentifies a target and shoots someone’s pet.

        And for those who say the dogs should have been on leashes, it still does not hold water.

        • Louise Kane says:

          anybody that shoots a husky and thinks its a wolf should have their gun taken away just on principle. They look nothing like one another

        • Nancy says:

          “Where is the indignation about wolves killing pets, when someone with a gun, not only out of season misidentifies a target and shoots someone’s pet”

          Thinking collateral damage” Immer.

          “Collateral damage is damage to things that are incidental to the intended target. It is frequently used as a military term where non-combatants are accidentally or unintentionally killed or wounded and/or non-combatant property damaged as result of the attack on legitimate military targets”

          Thinking our species is so conditioned anymore to war, that we can’t even muster outrage when it comes to”friendly fire/collateral damage” against our own species let alone what we do to other species, whether the threat is real or conjured up.

        • Yvette says:

          +1 Immer

    • Louise Kane says:

      “Time for this bullshit to end” +++

      which bullshit? the state’s shoddy treatment of wolves? People like this that have no respect for wolves or laws doing things like this? Too many idiots with too many guns? Good ol boys shooting up the woods and everything in it just cause they can, or Hood ol boys saying they thought something was something else and doin anything they want because the Justice Department policy is bullshit?

  73. Gary Humbard says:

    A male wolf is wandering in the Mt. Hood National Forest which is new territory for wolves.

    Journey (OR-7) is still alive and well in southern Oregon and probably with a new set of pups.–_or25_–_on_pr.html

    • Barb Rupers says:

      Good news, Gary. Do you think they will ever make it to the north end of the Coast Range? I’m hoping it goes well. I just had 3 deer and a coyote in the house area yesterday afternoon; also a rare visitor close to the house where there are no large trees – a silver gray squirrel.

  74. Louise Kane says:

    article rebutting the nonsense that trophy hunters are conservationists

    • Gary Humbard says:

      It would be interesting to learn whether “properly managed” trophy hunting does benefit conservation as most articles I’ve read; whether pro or con have a “dog in the fight”.

      The premise that “if it stays it pays” would seem reasonable in protecting animals from poachers. I would rather have game reserves for wildlife viewing only but if trophy hunting reserves significantly reduces poaching (assuming they do using armed guards) isn’t that a step forward?

      • Ed Loosli says:

        Where in Africa is there “properly managed” trophy hunting?? Out of 54 countries in Africa, maybe Namibia – maybe.

        • JB says:

          Yes, in Namibia. The broader issue here is that disingenuous people are creating false dichotomies. It is, of course, possible to have both ecotourism and trophy hunting in the same area–they are not mutually exclusive. And the same hotels, restaurants, rental car agencies and gas stations that support hikers, backpackers, and photographers in Estes Park (for example), also support hunters who pursue elk and deer in areas adjacent to RMNP.

          Conserving a population requires (a) protecting habitat and (b) limiting human killing to a sustainable level. Both of these CAN be achieved in areas that have both ecotourism and trophy/sport hunting. However, just because we can do something, doesn’t mean we necessarily should.

      • Nancy says:

        Gary, this article is a couple of years old but does put it into perspective, like so many articles out there:

        “It is a shock to realize that the greed of people has led us to a point where we are scrambling to save a species, so much so, that we breed lions just so we can kill them”

        “Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs, but not every man’s greed.”

  75. Louise Kane says:
    Texas rancher’s wife takes on husband and threatens divorce if he kills cows. She raised 30K in 4 months online bought the cows and converted her husband to vegan and the ranch to a sanctuary. Thats a determined woman!
    pretty damn cool

    • skyrim says:

      I’d say pretty damn cool too…….. And in Texas. Some kinda woman there.

  76. Barb Rupers says:

    Lead in ammunition is being banned for hunting in California:

    • Ed Loosli says:

      Thanks for this good news Barb!!
      Please remember that the “Daily Caller” is a far right-wing Internet site, so that explains why this article is so slanted. And also know that the majority of the California Fish and Game Commission are hunting supporters, and still the vote to ban lead-ammo was unanimous.

    • Louise Kane says:

      whats in that California air?
      wish some of it would filter into Montana, Idaho and Wyoming and MA for that matter. Maybe the legislators and commissioners actually listen to their constituents?

  77. Mareks Vilkins says:

    very dramatic documentary, haunting images:

    “Caribou & Wolves – The Endless Dance”

    In 2003 & 2004, Great Canadian Wildlife Adventures hosted well-known Canadian filmmaker Jeff Turner and his assistant Paul Zakora on a two-year film project for BBC and Animal Planet called ‘Caribou & Wolves – the Endless Dance’.

    We are very proud to say that bush pilot and wildlife guide ‘Tundra Tom’ along with his field team including wildlife guide Terry Elliott and pilot Brad Connell helped organize the field logistics, and then outfitted, guided and flew Jeff Turner around the mainland Arctic for the making of this film. Most of the great summer and autumn caribou migration footage were taken from our locations and utilizing our aircraft, and most of the wolf den footage was shot at our remote wildlife camps on the Canadian tundra. We took them to several wild wolf den sites, as well as right into the heart of the great summer caribou migration. Jeff got some awesome footage: with several grizzlies coming in to a remote water crossing to feed on some caribou whose legs had gotten stuck between boulders in the water of a remote tundra river. Earlier that spring, Jeff also got some high quality wolf pup footage with us on the upper Thelon valley.

    It took Jeff two years to film this project – later in the second season he brought his wife Susan and their two kids with him, and they all stayed for a month at our Southcamp outpost cabin on the upper Thelon River to get the autumn caribou footage. It was entertaining to see them self-school the kids on-site at that remote tundra cabin. Jeff and his wife are wonderful and very talented folks to be sure.

    Since the documentary was completed in 2004, the caribou herds in that region of the north decimated in population dramatically; and in 2011 we finally moved our wildlife camps and activities to the eastern side of Hudson Bay, where the caribou and wolf populations are still much stronger. Today we still guide photographers & wildlife enthusiasts to see wild wolves during the den cycle, the summer and autumn caribou migrations, musk-oxen, polar bear, birds-of-prey and northern lights in the Canadian Far North.

  78. Ida Lupine says:

    We would consider a wild bear or cougar that exhibited the described behaviour to be potentially dangerous and it would be removed and most likely killed. Why consider a wolf differently?

    No, we wouldn’t. I don’t believe any animal should be killed because they cross over some human-defined boundary. We’ve done enough damage to the environment without killing what’s left. Wildlife protection requires cooperation from all sides – if those against the reintroduction complain about every single detail, it cannot work, and that may be the point for some – to encourage the program to fail so that they can say ‘See? We knew it wouldn’t work’.

    Obviously, there may be some habituation that is naturally inherent when humans are trying to reintroduce an animal to it’s former range, and it requires cooperation all around in order to make it succeed.

    To want another creature to go extinct because of selfish needs and personal inconvenience is simply unconscionable to me. Take the extra step to keep children and pets safe, or protect livestock – it isn’t rocket science for crying out loud. There’s no need to kill the animals.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Or killing should be considered an absolute last resort, not the first go-to option, I should say.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Sad. Most of us have so much empathy for others of our own species and a great interest in ensuring that we continue in the future – I wish we could extend this empathy to other living things that we coexist with on the planet. 🙁

      Thanks Yvette.

  79. Louise Kane says:

    couple tries to smuggle in japanese pond turtles bound together and placed in socks

    in reading the article I wonder why are any of these turtles allowed to be exported? for what purpose especially given the possibility for long term invasive species issues in non native habitats.

  80. Louise Kane says:

    More from Tom Knudson on the Wildlife Services
    this time on the astounding number of birds killed

    • Yvette says:

      Montana’s Killing Fields
      Based on a lion-mortality density model developed by the Mountain Lion Foundation, Montana averages 1.23 mountain lions reported killed by humans for every 100 square miles of habitat. The eleven western state average is 0.65. Using MLF’s mortality ranking system, Montana ranks the 3rd deadliest from amongst the 11 states studied by MLF in reported human-caused mountain lion mortalities.

      Between 1992 and 2001 sport hunting in Montana accounted for 96 percent of all reported human caused mountain lion mortalities with the remainder predominately the result of depredation kills.

      In 2003 Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks Department provided a gender breakdown of its mountain lion harvests for the years 1998 through 2001. During this 4-year period 52 percent (1,305) of the total sport hunting take were female cougars.

      The percentage of female mountain lions killed each year still remains fairly high with females roughly accounting for 30 percent (105) of the 352 mountain lions killed during the 2009-10 hunting season.

      Mountain Lion Studies in Montana
      Rich DeSimone, a research biologist with MFWP, and his colleagues initiated a study of mountain lions in the Garnet Mountains in 1998 to better understand the affect of hunting on population characteristics and to guide Montana’s future management strategies.

      According to DeSimone, “Most states have no idea what they’re doing. They just hope that nobody challenges them” [about their quota numbers]. In an interesting side note, as of 2004, sport hunting was responsible for the annual deaths of between 58 and 75 percent of the radio-collared mountain lions within the study area.

      • Ed Loosli says:

        Thanks Yvette and Nancy:
        It looks like the State of Montana merely intends to tinker around the edges of mountain lion management reform. As long as Montana continues to legalize the sport/trophy hunting of mountain lions, their management plan will continue to be out-dated.

      • Nancy says:

        “The percentage of female mountain lions killed each year still remains fairly high with females roughly accounting for 30 percent (105) of the 352 mountain lions killed during the 2009-10 hunting season”

        Not looking for flack on this but what if we applied the same management practices/tactics when it came to managing our own species?

        But as you can see, from all the sites that come up when you Google “managing” the human species – few, if any, have anything to do with our bludgeoning populations, our ability to be top of the list of invasive species 🙂

        Hey, the next IPhone is right around the corner and who’s got time to thing about anything else?

    • Ida Lupine says:

      The outdated plan has left the agency reacting to lion issues more than getting ahead of them.

      Translation: We need to kill more of them for no reason, in case they might be a problem in the future. The right thing to do would be to leave them alone until there is a problem.

      Why does such a small minority of hunting and ranching interests have such sway over these agencies? They don’t seem to care at all about other interests. You bet there’s an ‘erosion of trust’. I hope some people are ‘at work’ getting ready to challenge this in court. And the rider trick has been done already.

      I wish we had more respect for our wildlife – these are America’s lions, that how I read them described in a recent article I read. We are so frigging backward at times.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        or the ‘translation2 should read: we need to kill more lions for no reason to make money from hunting, and to make it look like there are problems in to justify it to an unwitting public.

        The ‘unwitting’ public would like to know just how much of a threat to livestock mountain lions are (facts and science, please), and how much of a threat to public safety. Only in the rarest of occasions should a lion be killed, and re-location should be the goal, along with public education and safety education. Most people would agree with that.

    • Kathleen says:

      That article got my day off to a bad start when I read it in the Missoulian this a.m. 20 years since the plan was written and we need a new plan. Why?

      “The old plan had a certain amount of trust, but the farther we’ve gotten away from it over time, there’s been an erosion of that trust. We need to show we have a way of really serving the needs of the public.”

      What are the needs of the public? Hunting & killing mountain lions! Killing lions because humans have moved into lion territory! Yes, it’s all about us and how many animals we can kill for our own gratification and comfort. Here’s another gem: How do we set quotas?

      “… lion hunting quotas have varied up and down both by the number of lions suspected in an area and the number of hunters interested in pursuing them.” Ah, the scientific method (not)!

      And more: “…a balance also has to be kept between providing enough lions for lion hunters without allowing too much predation on deer and elk herds – potentially angering another constituency.”

      “Providing”! FWP is “providing” lions for hunters as if lions are mere widgets–tin ducks in a shooting gallery–rather than sentient individuals who value their lives, have their own interests, belong on the landscape, and have every right to feed themselves and their kids on their natural prey. The hubris of these self-important demigods at FWP is appalling–with their self-serving manipulating of animal numbers–and then they have the shameless nerve to call this phony numbers game “conservation.”

      • Ida Lupine says:

        Well, this looks like a good place to start. Looks like education begins at home:

        Either way, the poor animal is always the one who always pays the price for human misdeeds or mistakes – whether sleeping outside in bear country (the wolf always gets it regardless!) or not restraining/taking pets and kids into dangerous areas.

        “Ensuring” that there are enough lions for hunters, as if it were a necessity of some sort. Gotta love it!

      • Yvette says:

        +1 Kathleen. I’m there with you and the more I learn about hunting “conservation” in America the more disgusted I become. Did you read what the biologist in the Mountain Lion Foundation report said? “Most state have no idea what they are doing. They just hope nobody challenges them.”

        Felines don’t stir the emotions and the politics on the level as wolves, but our cats are getting hit. NM trying to make it open season on lions; IL in the process of starting to put bobcats back as a game species (can I safely assume they damn near exterminated them in the past?) SD with high quotas of lions.

        • Kathleen says:

          Hi Yvette. “Most states have no idea what they are doing.” One need only look to the Northern Rockies to see that perfectly illustrated–tho I know there are plenty of other examples. I may have mentioned this book before–the section on hunting tackles all the self-serving assertions and myths.

  81. Amre says:

    On the mexican wolf shooting: this is an example of what I have talked about for a long time:only kill large predators as a last resort for livestock damage, or if its a threat to public safety.

    I don’t think we know all of the details yet, but I do wonder what conditioned this wolf to humans: Being fed? Interacting too much with researchers? I’m pretty sure FWS takes careful precautions to prevent captive wolves that are released into the wild from becoming habituated to people, or so I’ve heard.

    Either way, its a very sad situation.

  82. Nancy says:

    “The town of about 1,300 people is squeezed together on just over 500 acres of land that abuts Yellowstone National Park’s West Entrance”

    Shameful. 80 acres of wild land & wildlife, will be “displaced” so the town can expand in order to cater to more humans?

  83. Ed Loosli says:

    Poachers Decimate Mozambique’s Elephant Population

  84. Ed Loosli says:

    The necessity to conserve “keystone species”, like wildebeests.

    “Perhaps like the ICUN’s Red List of Endangered Species and Green List of Protected Areas, we need an ICUN Yellow, Blue or Purple List of Keystone Species so that we closely watch and start conserving them. Maybe wildebeests aren’t endangered yet. But the slow decrease in their population–much like the greater proportionate impact of keystone species themselves–should cause greater alarm.”

  85. Professor Sweat says:

    The public hunt has not increased tolerance for wolves in WI.

  86. rork says:
    First case of CWD in free-ranging deer in Michigan. Source of prion unknown so far, but it’s near Lansing, nowhere close to WI.

  87. Louise Kane says:

    Nice story about coyote researcher not formally trained but doing excellent work

    • Ida Lupine says:

      Awwwww…looking forward to enjoying this article.

    • Yvette says:

      Ahhh! It’s Janet Kessler from Coyote Yipps blog. She is fantastic. I’ve always thought she is just as good as a trained scientist. If you follow her blog you’ll see what I mean. I popped in just now and see she has up the same Chief Dan George quote that I posted last night in the “Are we a part of Nature” article. Coincidence. If you haven’t followed her blog you should if you love coyotes.

  88. Louise Kane says:

    Botswana’s take on Cory Knowlton the “conservationist”Rhino killer and the CNN coverage. These trophy hunter’s never can answer the question, why not donate the money to a real conservation initiative? Why must the money only be donated accompanied by their kill?

    (22/5/15) – The Government of the Republic of Botswana notes with alarm the CNN documentary portraying an American hunter, Mr. Corey Knowlton, shooting one of the world’s most endangered species, a black rhino, in Namibia.
    We would have hoped that the amount of money he paid for the hunt could have been used instead to relocate the rhino to a country like ours, where we would have welcomed such an initiative and put the rhino in an area it would not be a threat to other rhinos and contribute to our tourism and education efforts.
    We therefore appeal for such consideration in future.
    As for Mr. Knowlton, whose actions and unconvincing attempts to justify them, is not welcome in Botswana.

    • Peter Kiermeir says:

      Botswana is well known for ist progressive conservation attitude. There are other examples however:

      They say: “The answer is very clear – it is the need for foreign currency in order to fund sustainable wildlife programmes, which can be costly, and also to benefit local communities”

      Trophy hunting in Africa can be a money printing machine – but rarely for the benefit of wildlife conservation. In many countries only a trickle of the money involved, if any at all, actually reaches the “downstream level” where conservation takes place or local communities benefit. Most of it seeps away already upstream in the hierarchy. Sometimes the money is just handed around in a closed circuit encompassing customer/outfitter/game farmer/ and only a little tip money reaches the locals, that are – in turn – not allowed to hunt for a living.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        It’s one day my biggest dream to visit Africa and see her iconic wildlife and visit the people too! I’ve always wanted to go to Kenya, and my SIS went to Tanzania – I was so envious!

        • Peter Kiermeir says:

          We´ve been to Namibia and South Africa a few times. Both are really great! So close (neighbours) but so different! My wife somehow prefers Namibia over South Africa.

  89. Immer Treue says:

    Didn’t know if I should put this on is man part of nature or interesting wildlife news. I chose the latter. Enjoy.
    Spiders on Drugs: we just can’t leave nature alone. Leave it to Canada.

    • Ida Lupine says:

      LOL 🙂

    • Nancy says:

      Got a kick out of this video Immer.

      About 6 years ago, I took my old Ford Explorer in to my mechanic to have an oil change. He called me into the bay where they working on my rig and asked if I was aware that I had a “hitchhiker?”

      Right behind the driver side seat, was a huge web that went from there to the back seat.

      Not had a need to open the back passenger door in a while so it freaked me out. The spider, hanging out in the web, looked just like the wood spider in that video, only MUCH bigger! Got to love nature and their ability to adapt to us 🙂

      • Barb Rupers says:

        My grandparents raised vegetables, fruits, and flowers. Perhaps as a result of all the plant material being brought into the house we sometimes at the end of the summer had a large orb spider living in a window. We as youngsters would throw flies into the web. As a result of these early experiences I appreciate spiders.

        While living in Maine, my husband who was a service forester for the state had a cooperator, Arthur Lougee, who was the art director for Ford Times. His wife, Laura, was also involved in artistic work and made beautiful pictures using leaf skeletons, pressed flowers and spider webs which she sprayed with paint to more readily show the structure of the web before gently positioning them on her composition. I traded one of my wooden mobiles for one of her pictures.

  90. Kathleen says:

    The latest on today’s Manhattan Supreme Court hearing on chimpanzee personhood:

    • Yvette says:

      Fingers crossed but if the case is lost this time I do believe that eventually personhood rights will be granted to some species.

      Honestly, how advanced of a society are we to enforce testing, much of which is painful and torturous, on non-human animals? Research is banned on all Great Apes in the UK, Germany, Austria, Sweden, New Zealand and the Netherlands. Austria has banned testing on the lessor apes, too.

      And that crazy socialist country of Bolivia granted rights to all of Mother Earth.

      In America? There is a fight over whether to allow lessor ape breeding in huge laboratory facilities in Florida. Sounds pretty backward to me.

      • MAD says:

        Although I morally and ethically agree with discontinuing testing and cruel treatment of these animals, I believe the courts are the wrong venue to achieve this.

        No appellate court in NY will rule in favor of this. Mr. Wise and his group have lost 2 cases before, appealed and lost again and have requested NY’s highest court (the Court of Appeals) to hear their case. I believe the Ct of Appeals will refuse to hear their case, effectively ending all similar cases in New York that are pending, like this current one.

        And good luck trying to get corrupt politicians to pass laws prohibiting treatment like this. NY’s dysfunctional, corrupt political system makes places like Chicago look like Mr. Rogers Neighborhood.

        • Kathleen says:

          The NHrP has done its homework and is in it for the long haul. Here are some Q&A’s for anyone interested:

          • WM says:

            From the Q & A on their website:

            What do you mean by “legal person”?

            A legal person is an entity capable of having legal rights. These have included humans, fetuses, corporations, and ships. (Even, in Indian courts, idols and holy books have been granted legal personhood.) It’s society’s way of acknowledging that an entity counts in the law.

            Not long ago, men generally agreed that women and children could not be legal persons, but were simply the property of men. In this country we said the same thing about African-American slaves. We are asserting, based on clear scientific evidence, that it’s time to take the next step and recognize that certain nonhuman animals cannot continue to be exploited as property.

            Why are you going to court rather than trying to pass legislation?

            Courts are where a plaintiff goes to enforce rights and obtain justice. State legislatures and the U.S. Congress enact statutes, but common law state judges make law, too, based on precedents and their sense of what is right, good and just. (Contract and tort law are almost entirely common law.) Our argument that a chimpanzee, for example, is entitled to the basic right to bodily liberty is based on precedents and what is right, good and just.

            What they fail to tell you is that no court (except apparently Indian courts) cannot re-define who has standing to sue. That is a legislative function which I seriously doubt any state court, recognized courts of limited jurisdiction, or importantly federal courts will rule on.

            The arena for change is a legislative body. I expect these folks know that. But, I also suspect they should soon be ready to have their cases kicked out of court, possibly with legal sanctions against their lawyers, because they darn well know there is not standing to sue on behalf of “non-human” entities not recognized by statute.

            • WM says:


              ++What they fail to tell you is that no court (except apparently TRIBAL courts) CAN re-define who has standing to sue.

  91. Leslie says:

    Grizzlies still struggle in the Yaak area

    Few bears, bears flown in for new genes, limited connectivity, poaching and/or mistaken identity are all big problems here and speak to why Grizzlies should NOT be delisted in general until these are solved.

    • Gary Humbard says:

      It’s good to see grizzlies being transplanted, forest plans hopefully being revised for improved dispersal, Defenders purchasing bear proof garbage bins and electrified fencing and the Vital Ground Foundation securing conservation easements for connecting vital linkages.

      It would help if MFWP discontinued black bear hunting in the Cabinet/Yaak area since mistaken identity is no doubt a reason for deaths. All of these efforts go for naught when a bullet from a hunter ends up in a grizzly.

  92. Ed Loosli says:

    “How federal dollars are financing the water crisis in the West” by Abrahm Lustgarten and Naveena Sadasivam,

    “At a time when farmers in Arizona, California and other Western states might otherwise adapt to a water-short world, federal farm subsidies are helping preserve a system in which the thirstiest crops are grown in some of the driest places. “The subsidies are distorting water usage throughout the West and providing an incentive to use more water than would be used in an open market,” said Bruce Babbitt, Arizona’s former governor and a former U.S. Secretary of the Interior.”

    • WM says:

      Well, now you have the other half of the “welfare” rancher/farmer scenario. And, I would be REALLLLY interested if former AZ Governor Bruce Babbitt ever weighed in on how water was used in AZ when he was in office.

      Do you supposed he peed on the cotton growers during his 2 terms in office as governor, or before that as AZ Attorney General? Surely he had enough time do so. Heck these cotton growers have been raising the excessive water consumptive crop for decades and decades, with federal subsidies in the West and everywhere else in the US (for certain crops), which is what makes it so tough for them to stop now.

      Heck, lots of folks don’t realize the Department of Interior includes the Bureau of Reclamation, on the of the largest water development entities in the West, too. They do love to build dams and water delivery systems.


      Established in 1902, the Bureau of Reclamation is best known for the dams, power plants, and canals it constructed in the 17 western states. These water projects led to homesteading and promoted the economic development of the West. Reclamation has constructed more than 600 dams and reservoirs including Hoover Dam on the Colorado River and Grand Coulee on the Columbia River.

      Today, we are the largest wholesaler of water in the country. We bring water to more than 31 million people, and provide one out of five Western farmers (140,000) with irrigation water for 10 million acres of farmland that produce 60% of the nation’s vegetables and 25% of its fruits and nuts.

      I’m pretty sure Bruce Babbitt would not have been elected/appointed to prominent positions if he had been too vocal about how water is used inefficiently in the West. Funny how one can be candid when no longer having a vested interest in something.

  93. rork says:

    Summary of the recent northern pike wars in the Columbia basin (where they are invading). Maybe the disaster I feared won’t be as bad as I thought.

    My brother is slaughtering walleye on Lake Roosevelt – they get to take home 32 fish per person on 2-day visits, and do this 3 times a year. There are incidental rainbow trout and kokanee too (land-locked sockeye = Oncorhynchus nerka, maybe the best food I’ve ever eaten).

    • WM says:


      Kokanee, aka landlocked sockeyer or “silvers,” are awesome when you can get them. Used to fish for them as a kid in Banks Lake, which is the off stream reservoir adjacent to Lake Roosevelt. Nearly swamped a small boat once in the wind that comes up out of nowhere over there, before we could get back in. Kind of scary when you are 12 years old, praying the old outboard doesn’t quit as you are taking waves over the bow, but an adventure nonetheless.

      Speaking of fish, the Columbia and Banks, it appears the Eastern European guys who were gill netting whitefish last year finally got their case heard. A Grant County Judge handed out very lenient sentences, much to the dismay of WDFW senior management and the officers that caught these guys.

      In an earlier story, if I recall correctly, one or more of these Eastern Europeans were here illegally (from the Ukraine?). There was little doubt these guys were selling these fish within their ethnic community – what else would you do with 376 fish gill netted, and weighing 3-5 pounds each? The legal system failed once again to mete out justice to skumbag poachers. Of course we can’t even ask about the illegal status of these assholes because Immigration Service can’t do much to kick them out -even looks likely they were convicted of misdemeanors instead of criminal charges, probably because they alleged they can’t read English. But, apparently, they can read well enough to understand road signs to get them all the way across the state). Sorry, I just had to vent on that, and there is a short companion story on the pike invading the Columbia River system – yet one more significant obstacle to prevent successful native salmon/steelhead populations from making their way through the river system. How many salmonid fingerlings do you suppose an invasive and illegally introduced 20 pound pike eats a week?:

      • rork says:

        Agree those sentences are insufficient deterrence, no matter where people are from or what their names sound like. The possibility of such small fines is just operating expenses for net fishers. (I’ve fished Banks quite a few times, as you can guess. Target big trout typically, but also some very heavy walleye.)

  94. Ida Lupine says:

    Here’s a prime example. No sooner does a conservation project get started and start to make a little progress (complete with schoolchildren participation), and a developer swoops in:

    Just Build A Bridge Over the Salmon

    • Ed Loosli says:

      Ida: Thanks.
      Bless the local home-owner/conservationists who are trying to save what sounds like a little piece of heaven on earth.

  95. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Malaysia: Almost 50% of traditional medicine shops in the country sell illegal bear products

    “Products containing illegal bear-derived items such as gall bladders and bile continue to be available in 175 of 365 traditional medicine shops surveyed across the country.”
    “According to Chris Shepherd, the regional director of wildlife monitoring network, Traffic, nearly 60% of 298 bear gall bladders observed for sale were claimed to be from wild Sun Bears killed locally through opportunistic and deliberate poaching activities.”

  96. Peter Kiermeir says:

    White rhino survives against all Odds

    “On 30th April this year, two white rhino – an adult cow and her young calf – were poached at Lombardini Game Farm. Both animals were shot and killed with a large calibre rifle, and the horns of the cow were removed. The senseless killing of the two month old calf was disturbing as the poachers left the calf’s horn intact but shot him anyway Only a week later Lombardini was to suffer another loss when a sub-adult white rhino bull was shot, killed and the horns removed. A four year old rhino heifer (female) also went missing. She was found in dire condition a couple of days later.”

    Be prepared for some graphic pics

  97. WM says:

    California’s Salton Sea (largest water body in the state) is drying up in the drought. Exposed lake bed could create dust bowl conditions with toxic properties from accumulated agricultural chemicals in the sediment, and many of the 400 wildlife species here could die off from habitat loss. Potentially staggering negative environmental consequences loom large here.

    • Nancy says:

      WM, have you seen the latest issue of National Geographic on the “Sins of the Aral Sea?”

      “When the sea was healthy and fishermen plied its fertile waters, moisture evaporated off the lake each day. “Now instead of water vapor in the atmosphere, we have toxic dust,” says Kamalov, as he downs a shot with a grim set to his wizened face”

      “Besides toxic levels of sodium chloride, the dust is laced with pesticides such as DDT, hexachlorocyclohexane, toxaphene, and phosalone—all known carcinogens. The chemicals have worked their way into every level of the food chain”

      Here and elsewhere, when it comes to the abuse of Planet Earth.

    • Mareks Vilkins says:

      Saiga antelope is a staple food for wolves in Kazakhstan.

      in Soviet times there were 25-30K wolves (1.5-2K killed annually)

      one steppe wolf consumes ~ 1-2 kg of meat daily or 240-480 kg during 8 months when they hunt saiga antelopes. So one wolf consumes 10-20 saiga antelopes annually.

      in winter a wolf-saiga ratio is 1:1000; in summer – 1:1200 (in Soviet times)

      however, as the wolves attack only those small saiga herds which are trailing behind large/core herds the ratio is 1:50 – 1:100. Those trailing herds consist of vulnerable individuals – they are weak and have higher foal mortality (in core herds it is ~7% (if there’s no stress, then it is ~1%) but in those trailing herds foal mortality is 30-50%) and are smaller in size.

      • Mareks Vilkins says:

        After a rapid decline they were nearly completely exterminated in the 1920s, but they were able to recover. By 1950, two million of them were found in the steppes of the USSR.


        Their population fell drastically following the collapse of the USSR due to uncontrolled hunting and demand for horns in Chinese medicine. At one point, some conservation groups, such as the World Wildlife Fund, encouraged the hunting of this species, as its horn was presented as an alternative to that of a rhinoceros.


        Today, the populations have again shrunk enormously — as much as 95% in 15 years,[6] — and the saiga is classified as critically endangered by the IUCN.

        in May 2010, an estimated 12,000 of the 26,000 Saiga population in the Ural region of Kazakhstan have been found dead. Although the deaths are currently being ascribed to pasteurellosis, an infectious disease that strikes the lungs and intestines, the underlying trigger remains to be identified. In May 2015, what may be the same disease broke out in three northern regions of the country, killing 85,000 as of May 22

  98. Ida Lupine says:

    These two examples show why we can’t be foolish enough to think that we can ‘manage’ wildlife populations. We can’t account for the unknowns, such as a disease wiping out half of a population of antelope, or the negative unintended consequences of our greed, and becoming accustomed to a life of Shangri-La in a semi-arid region, when the water begins to run out and cannot support swimming pools, golf courses, green lawns and Las Vegas fountains on top of agriculture and basic needs of a state population grown to the size of a country in itself.

  99. Peter Kiermeir says:

    Every country has it´s fair share of perverts:

    Two wild lynx killed in the eastern Bavaria Region of Germany, front legs cut off and discarded near a remote camera used for lynx monitoring. Further parts of the carcasses arranged near the home of the lynx project manager

    • Mareks Vilkins says:

      Next to road mortality and habitat isolation, illegal hunting and human persecution still remains a massive problem. Last year, the radio-collared lynx female “Tessa” was found dead in Bavaria after her prey was poisoned with Carbofuran. The fate of her offspring remained unclear, but it is likely that it died as well.

      In July this year another female was illegally shot in the Bavarian Forest. It was pregnant with three kittens and killed by several shots in the chest. The carcass was placed right next to a popular hiking trail, so it seems as if the poacher wanted to set a sign against the regional lynx conservation activities. In the Bavarian Forest, around 17 lynx were released in the 1980s. Today, around 16 adult lynx live in the Bavarian Forest and the bordering Ŝumava Nationalpark in the Czech Republic. Although around ten kittens are born each year in the region, the population is not growing for years. Habitat is not a limiting factor so far, therefore experts assume that the lack of lynx expansion is the consequence of persistent illegal persecution in the region.

      • Mareks Vilkins says:

        as one posted in comments section:
        “Bavaria, the Texas of Germany”

        In a past interview concerning the protection of the wolves, the mayor of bayrischzell(a district in bavaria) Helmut Limbrunner said “We are a cultivated landscape and not a zoo”. (original German: “Wir sind eine Kulturlandschaft, kein Wildzoo.”). He also said these bigger predators should live somewhere else but not here. So not only hunters … and farmers … are hating these predators but also arrogant people from the high ranks. This unfortunately is visible in the number of the lynxes. According to the amount of lynxes that actually were born in the bavarian forest, their whole number should be a lot larger but it isn’t, so there is a lot of undiscovered poaching in the forest.

        • rork says:

          I’m somewhat offended about the Texas of Germany thing. More like Montana. Maybe there’s more problems there than other places in Germany cause that’s where the lynx are.
          Hunters I know in Germany would never do such things (same as here) – it’s actually exciting times: boar, bear, wolf, lynx, all have chances. Pig and Red deer (“hirsh”, more like our elk) are the big targets. Chamois too (gams bock). My relatives live in the mountains (Tegernsee and Schliersee). It’s true they eat roe deer too.

          • Peter Kiermeir says:

            rork: You should not feel overly offended. What he means is surely not intended as a direct offense against Texas or Texans – it was just his way to say “Wild West”.

            Now, the mayor of a small village in southern Bavaria (and Bayrischzell is nothing more than that) is certainly not representative for the whole population of a region. Albeit, he of course acts as a lobbyist for his group of friends sharing the same interests – whatever these are. As a matter of fact, there is not a widespread hate against lynx and wolf and bear throughout the society – far from that! There are the usual suspects and interest groups, you find almost everywhere, opposing the large carnivores e.g. sheep owners, hunters/farmers (often the same group). Everybody at the moment is surprised by the new “quality” of cruelty against Lynx and Wolf and also the unmistakable signals to those people of the lynx or wolf conservation projects. Cutting off those lynx legs or beheading that two wolves in the territory of Brandenburg are phenomena currently unique with two isolated regions of the country and unheard of in the other regions, where lynx and wolf also exist. This leads more to somebody with a deep mental disturbance and excludes the ethical hunter. The problem is, that people there, deep in the “woods”, are a closely knit buddy buddy alliance. With the local police officer (most probably a farmer´s son from the nearest hamlet) sitting at the regular´s table together with the judge, who is a hunter himself…….. So there is certainly not too much pressure to solve those cases unless the officials finally go for a dedicated task force now.

            • WM says:


              ++rork: You should not feel overly offended. What he means is surely not intended as a direct offense against Texas or Texans – it was just his way to say “Wild West”. ++

              I wouldn’t be so quick to dismiss Mareks’ dig at Texas.

              An interesting set of facts about Texas. About 1/5 of the wildlife killed by WS (APHIS) nation wide is in TX. And, there is a lot of self-help there and in many years a large state budget dedicated to killing coyotes (and feral pigs). The truth is that while there are a quite a few predators killed there by WS, the VAST numbers of starlings, cowbirds and blackbirds working over the rice fields are largest numbers in the statistics, well, except the 20,000 feral pigs, potential vectors of disease and the bane of the farmer.


              And, I bet Texas will be one of the last states, if not the last with suitable habitat, to take a national share of ESA protected wolves. Of course, there is not much federal land there either.

              • Peter Kiermeir says:

                The original posting in the comment section of the article reads:
                “Bavaria, the Texas of Germany (in more than just one sense)”

                Seems the originator of this comment is indeed aware of things going on in Texas. Didn´t expect that.

        • Peter Kiermeir says:

          To call the mayor of a village with a population of about 1600 a person of “high ranks” is too much unjustified honor for him. There´s tourist money involved, so he feels entitled to raise his voice. His remarkable sentence was connected with the appearance of a wolf in his area and he feared tourist´s would cancel bookings because of this wolf – which of course never happened. He´s an idiot, but he´s certainly not a proof that certain “high ranks” hate carnivores.

  100. Ed Loosli says:

    A little good news, for a change.
    “Black Rhinos Return To Northern Kenya”

  101. Barb Rupers says:

    There have been recent protests against a Shell Oil drilling rig at a terminal in Seattle which is headed to the Chukchi Sea in Alaska.

    Some politicians ask for a halt to the project.
    “Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley, joined by seventeen other Senators, urged the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement to halt all offshore oil and gas drilling permits in the Arctic region.”

  102. Ed Loosli says:

    “Clear Cut Logging in Colorado Challenged in Court to Protect Lynx”

  103. Ed Loosli says:

    “North Carolina Governor McCrory Vetoes Ag-Gag Bill”

  104. Immer Treue says:

    Two Montana wolves illegally shot by the SSS boys.
    Time to publicize the hell out if this, and let the public know who the real pimps are. This is the next stage in the wolf wars, ending the reign of self righteousness if these hypocrates.

    The antis like to talk about the indigenous wolves. They must be kidding. Not until federal oversight reach the area did wolves stand a chance.

    • Yvette says:

      I wonder what it will take to deter and decrease the illegal killing of wolves.

      It just does not make sense that anyone can have that much hate for one species. It is illogical.

      • Louise Kane says:

        It’s hard to imagine people will stop illegal killing of wolves when the states make killing them seem so justified with their almost ceaseless slaughtering wolf plans. The wolf plans legitimize wolf hate and prevent evolution of thought about wolves.

      • Immer Treue says:

        One can only shake their head in wonder at these “tough” individualists, who have nothing but scorn for those who live in urban settings, yet have this pathological phobia for the one creature that all but guarantees the “wild” they so cherish.

        We have the same thing up here in NE MN. Tourist money keeps the place afloat, as most who come up here enjoy one of the last wild places in the upper Midwest, yet the locals are glad when the wolf hugging foreigners go home. Eco-tourism is about the only hope that some of these areas can really tap into, yet they continue to spoon for a return of the old ways of extractive industry, and of course, shooting wolves on sight. When one steps back and looks at this behavior, it is just another form of “thinking with a limp”.

  105. Ida Lupine says:

    And so much for the idea that a little bloodlettinghunting would increase tolerance:

    Tolerance of Wolves In Wisconsin Continues to Decline

  106. Louise Kane says:

    So the Mozambique rangers that helped poachers are paid 86.00 a month or $1032.00 a year.

    Cory Knowlton the self proclaimed “conservationist” trophy hunter that paid 350K to kill a rhino for “conservation” could have funded 4069 rangers, better yet he could have paid the 90 Mozambique rangers a 35.5% increase in their salaries and paid all of them $3888.00 per year. That kind of money could have made a difference in whether the rangers had incentive to protect the animals.

  107. Ida Lupine says:

    Hunting Group Wants To See More Aggressive Hunting Near Idaho Border

    “Hunters and trappers killed 206 wolves over the season that ended in March, and landowners killed six more. The state’s wolf population fell an estimated 12 percent to at least 554 predators, and landowner complaints and livestock losses also dropped.

    So wildlife officials are seeking to keep the status quo this year. That includes keeping the same hunting and trapping regulations and also a statewide limit of 100 wolves that landowners can kill because of potential threats to people, livestock or pets.

    What more do they want? I wish that for every poached wolf discovered because of these “Schitzstaffel”, a deduction is made from the total hunting quota for the following season. That’s my public comment.

  108. Ida Lupine says:

    the Bavarian forest

    It does sound so romantically European, doesn’t it – something almost lost and left to books. I really am happy about the rewilding of Europe, and I hope they will have much success with it.

    • Peter Kiermeir says:

      The Bavarian Forest no longer being the romantic deep dark forest penetrated only by smugglers and poachers, the small population of wood carvers, poor and almost starving.
      Today it is highly developed, with ski resorts scattered on the mountains. Nowadays it´s an hour from Munich by car on a four lane highway. The Bavarian Forest National Park is more or less a zoo, with wolves and lynx and bear living in enclosures, only a few lynx running wild (and get their legs cut off as you see). Worse even, when you cross the border to the Czech Republic. For miles the streets are lined with cheap and dirty “etablissements” just one large red light district. No wolves there also, the Czech have only occasionally a disperser from Slovakia. And rarely does one come over to Bavaria. They find traces in the snow on the Arber mountain every other winter. That´s all.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        Sad. It appears that people are the same everywhere – many of us are selfish. Well, one can hope that we all get our acts together and try to preserve what we can, and leave what’s left, if anything, alone. I’m not overly optimistic about human ‘nature’, but I do have some hope. Here we seem to have no plans to limit human growth, and it’s the same everywhere I am sure. I wish people could see the value in wildlife and wilderness, instead of cheap and tacky quick bucks to be made. 🙁

        I visited Germany years ago, and I really loved it – lovely people and country.

  109. Louise Kane says:
    gruesome aerials of commercial cattle feedlots

    • Nancy says:

      Incredible photos Louise. Just a few out of 15,000 feedlots. Everyone who eats beef, should check them out.

  110. Louise Kane says:

    The way that humans manipulate wildlife to benefit what we deem important is very disturbing to me. As my nephew said to me once when I was asking him to do something, “who made you God”?,Human tinkering always leaves a mess.

    • rork says:

      In our effects on the world we resemble gods cause of our numbers. We built dams up and down that river. Doing nothing is making a choice to do something – it is just like every other option in the decision space. What mess is predicted from culling lake trout in Yellowstone, or glossy buckthorn from fens in MI? It’s often trying to ameliorate a situation other humans caused. Culling cormorants is sad, it’s true, as is killing cow-birds in MI near the Kirtland’s Warbler strongholds (70% nest parasitism before action), or killing mute swans. We cull cormorants too (for less reason than at the Columbia). I don’t mean to imply it’s an easy choice, or that other options should not be looked for.

      • Ida Lupine says:

        What we should do is stop looking outside ourselves to correct the problems we have made, and look to what our ‘numbers’ can do to stop the destruction of the environment. Picking up our own garbage, or creating less of it, or find ways to enable that we need less to throw out, would seem a very simple, easy way to start. Prosperity and modern conveniences have made us lazy. (throwing our garbage out the car window or leaving it behind after an outdoors trip – really???) We should not kill off other living things, when we can correct our own behavior.

        • Ida Lupine says:

          or correct our own shortcomings and behavior first. Killing, or taking the life of another living being, should be an absolute last resort, not the first automatic go-to option. Taking other living beings’ lives for granted is shameful. It’s not our numbers, but that entitled attitude, whether told to us by religion or not, that makes us arrogantly the self-appointed god-like wonders we think we are.

    • Gary Humbard says:

      Nobody made us God, but God tells us to love one another and worship him will all of our heart and soul. Those dams significantly helped this country defeat Nazi Germany and Imperialist Japan through the construction of our ships and airplanes, and thus free millions of people to have the freedom to worship God.

      Humans have created a nature out of balance on the Columbia River system and so far all of the issues have been and are being addressed except for predators. If we truly want salmon to be restored all of the factors need to be addressed.

      • Yvette says:

        That may be true, Gary, but the amount of dams built during the dam building craze does not support the true need. During the multi-decade dam building craze many were built simply because of the competition between the ACOE and USBR. The political maneuvering and expense was simply not worth the loss. The loss of Celio Falls with The Dalles Dam; the loss of prime salmon fishing grounds with Coulee Dam; the loss of prime ranchland with The Garrison Dam. One cannot calculate the losses; they are existential, and that is without even considering the devastating cultural loss to the people who had managed those fisheries with traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) for millennia.

        There is a great essay in Orion Magazine by Ginger Strand called, “The Crying Indian” and in that essay Strand researches and reports on some of the underlying politics and decisions that lead to the environmental predicament we faced by the 1960’s. I think most on this blog will appreciate and like this essay. There is a passage on the dams I mentioned and the reason that we now see aluminum used for so much of our soft drinks. There was a glut of aluminum post WW II.

        You’ll enjoy and appreciate this writing, I think. Ida, Louise and Nancy, I think you guys will particularly appreciate and enjoy this read. It’s and eye-opener.

        • Kathleen says:

          Yvette, you will perhaps appreciate this article:

          along with anyone who has read “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.” It wasn’t until I taught that novel to seniors in my high school English class that I gained real insight into the narrator–Chief Bromden–and the tragedy of his life, the loss of Celilo Falls.

          • Ralph Maughan says:

            I didn’t know this!! Thanks.

          • Ida Lupine says:

            Slipping now from memory, as the people who fished at Celilo Falls pass from this life, the history of the falls is in danger of disappearing. Celilo Falls and the deep well of culture there is so far below the radar screen of the dominant white society that a search of two popular encyclopedias—The On-line Columbia Encyclopedia and the last print edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica—reveals no entry under the heading of “Celilo Falls”. A trip to Google, thankfully, is far more productive.

            With our modern engineering skills in the 1950s, we certainly could have done something very different. We could have improved the ship canal that had been built around the falls in the early 1900s, and we could have saved Celilo Falls and the rich life that went with it. If only we had put our minds to it.

            How sad. We still could put our minds to it? Thanks Kathleen!

          • Yvette says:

            Thank you, Kathleen. That was wonderful to read. Gut wrenching, but still wonderful. It reminded me of things from my childhood. My sister’s mother-in-law was Umatilla and even though my summers were spent in Montana on the Northern Cheyenne reservation there was still ‘the fish’ because of her. When the salmon arrived from her family it was an important event. Even as a kid from a different tribe and culture I felt its importance. It wasn’t spoken. It was something that was felt.

          • Mark L says:

            We’ve seen this repeated in the south too. My tribe’s ancestral land was flooded in the 20th century to create Toledo Bend reservoir on the Louisiana/Texas border: