Reader generated wildlife news beginning on April 9, 2019

It is time to create a new page of “Reader Generated Wildlife News.” Do not post copyrighted material.

Here is the link to the “old” wildlife news page that began on Feb. 14, 2019 From there you can access links to the many older pages of wildlife news readers created.

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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.

601 Responses to Do you have some interesting wildlife news? April 9, 2019 edition

  1. Lance Olsen says:

    Natural variability isn’t the last word on climate science
    Lance Olsen

    Politicians visiting western Montana’s Lolo Peak 2017 fire tried to put the blame for the fire on lawsuits filed by environmentalists. Montana’s US Senator Steve Daines did mention the role of climate change, but quickly went on to say that the climate has always changed.

    Well, yes, for sure. Changes in Earth’s temperatures and resulting climate have often been driven by forces beyond human control, and many such changes occurred well before humans existed. These familiar natural forces have changed world temperatures from hot to cold and from cold to hot, all without a lick of help from man, woman or child.

    For example, it’s become plain that large volcanic eruptions can cast killing chills across the planet, crushing crops and making people miserable. For another example, El Niño—perhaps the most widely known expression of natural variability—periodically releases ocean heat that has a rippling effect across much of the planet.

    So Daines’ remark wasn’t entirely hot air. Natural forces are clearly capable of changing the set of conditions we summarize as climate.

    A recent attention-getting study turned up evidence that an earlier planetary hot spell was driven by volcanic magma under an extensive Siberian coalfield. Geologists put that initial study to the test and have twice confirmed that the hot magma scorched the coal above, thereby releasing lots of carbon into the atmosphere, which then increased atmospheric and oceanic temperatures. The resulting heat created extinctions long before there were humans to blame.

    It’s the real world out there, with more than one thing going on at a time, so it’s no shocker that the forms of natural variability don’t always act alone.

    One recent study cites evidence that natural variability in the form of a sulfur-loaded volcanic eruption may have had its cooling influence on North America complicated by the warming influence of another natural variation, El Niño
    All in all, and independent of any single line of evidence, the science on natural variability of climate is as good as it gets. Natural variation of climate is real, is influential, and isn’t going away.

    A 2007 analysis in Science succinctly summarized the situation: “Rising greenhouse gases are changing global climate, but … natural climate variations will have a say.”

    Natural climate variations will have a say, but they’re not the only voice in the climate choir, as Montana’s Senator Daines might have us believe.

    Modern interest in the influence of greenhouse gases had its start with a hunch explored by mathematician Joseph Fourier in the 1820s. Fourier wondered why Earth isn’t too cold to support life. After all, the planet spins on its axis, turning half the globe away from sunlight every night. Why doesn’t everything just freeze in the dark?

    Fourier wasn’t sure, but it was known by his day that our atmosphere is made up of several kinds of gases. That was enough to make him wonder if some of those gases might somehow hug enough heat to keep the planet from deep freeze.

    A contemporary journal published Fourier’s hypothesis, but it wasn’t until about 1860 that physicist John Tyndall put it to the test. With some simple experiments, Tyndall found that two atmospheric gases—water vapor and carbon dioxide—were especially good at holding heat.

    Thirty years later, in the 1890s, a new normal had been established. The burning of coal was commonplace, and there was reason to suspect that it was enabling additions of carbon dioxide above the atmosphere’s normal levels. Curious about the consequences, physical chemist Svante Arrhenius put together a simple little model to estimate where it might lead.

    With Arrhenius’ calculations, modern scientific climate prediction was off to an early start, even before the end of the 19th century. Although primitive compared to the climate calculations of today, Arrhenius’ model predicted a warmer world, with an eventual loss of ice and snow.
    We’re seeing his model tested in the real world today, as glaciers shrink, Arctic sea ice retreats and rainfall in mid-winter months signals a world too warm for snow.

    None of which contradicts the science on natural variability. Earth is and will remain susceptible to natural variability capable of forcing its climate into change, in one direction or another.

    Nor does natural variability contradict the science pioneered by Fourier 200 years ago. It’s still the real world out there, in all its complexity, and politicians shouldn’t be allowed the luxury of using natural variability as a smokescreen.

  2. As Wolf Depredation on Domestic Livestock escalates, in the U.S. and throughout the World with the Wolves successful re-introduction populations spread, the contentious anger between Livestock Producers and Conservationists does also spread. My published research Blog at http://WWW.FENCEFLAGWOLFTRAINING.COM is a tangible suggestion, with minimal cost, to mitigate the anger on both sides of the fence!
    Donald J. Kaleta

    • Nancy says:

      Donald – tried to point out (and maybe others did to in previous posts) that your sales pitch/approach won’t work in many western states due to snowfall and the thousands of acres that would have to be encircled by your product… at a tremendous cost. Can see it on hobby farms and maybe around calving areas?

      Are you listening or do you cling to the hope as a salesman, that ranchers, who really ought to be policing their product (livestock) if they don’t want to suffer losses from predators, are going to try out your product due to the hysterics you’ve created on your website, regarding what native predators are capable of and who’ve been here long before the first rancher ever put up a fence line or stuck a shovel in the ground and called it home……

      • Lance Olsen says:

        As populations of wolves and grizzly bears try to recover access to historic habitat, they’ll be more and more reliant on private lands. Accomodating the needs of wolves and grizzlies will inescapably require accomodating the needs of the people. Easier said than done, but there it is.

    • Ed-L says:

      “”The director of the national park, Seger Emmanuel baron van Voorst tot Voorst, is against letting wolves populate the area. ‘We are working hard on a daily basis to maintain the unique ecological balance of the park,’ he told EenVandaag. ‘There will be big consequences if we let the wolves in.””

      Baron van Voorst tot Voorst needs to pay a visit to Yellowstone NP to see how wolves have improved the natural balance…They will do the same in Holland.

  3. idaursine says:

    Yes, I wondered the same thing. It also says there is an overabundance of deer and wild boar, so I would think the wolves would be welcome to some degree. I think there is an EU law to protect them?

  4. idaursine says:

    “The gray wolf population grew by 14 last year, which conservationists are happy about but not so happy they think the animal’s long-term prospects are secure.
    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reported Monday that it counted 131 Mexican gray wolves for 2018 – 64 in Arizona and 67 in New Mexico – up from 117 the year before. The increase came despite the documented deaths of 21 wolves last year, the report said.”

    Up by 14? Whoop-de-do. But I suppose it is enough to send some into a frenzy. ;(

  5. idaursine says:

    ^^No offense to JeffN’s post – but many times the headlines don’t tell it all.

  6. idaursine says:

    ^^While there is so much antipathy towards wolves basically everywhere in the country, one can never feel that there’s cause to celebrate, just a guarded positivity.

    So, 21 killed and an increase of 14 – still down by 7 in my books. It doesn’t say the causes of death or that ranchers are to blame for (most of?) the deaths of Mexican wolves and they do not want them on the landscape.

    The one notorious example from last year was the rancher who deliberately trapped an endangered wolf, bashed it to death, and I don’t know if he received much more than a wagging finger and a warning not to do it again.

  7. idaursine says:

    I’m sorry, I was wrong – and never more happy to be. This rancher who killed the endangered Mexican wolf had his grazing permit revoked, which would be a very big deal. He is appealing, so I don’t know the status of that:

  8. Hiker says:

    Bear spray success story:

    The only thing I would say about this is that it seems to me that he should’ve had the spray more accessible.

    • Elk375 says:

      What are you NOT ok with. The hunter had been applying of 30 years and was drawn for a moose tag. He hunted and shot a legal moose.

      You have a right to your opinion.

      BTW that is huge moose.

      • Hiker says:

        I just felt sad the moment I saw the picture. Then I read that the hunter passed over other, smaller animals.
        Yes, he did nothing wrong, I just admire animals like that and feel somehow that beast was the fittest in the forest and should survive to pass on his fitness.
        Yes, I known some will view that as idealism. I admit it, I’m an idealist when it comes to Nature. I will never forget seeing Moose (not as big) while hiking and working in Grand Teton N.P. Beautiful creatures.

        • idaursine says:

          I wouldn’t call it idealism at all, what you feel. Idealism is for something that can’t really ever become reality. What this man has done is the opposite of idealism and destructive to life.

          It’s a terrible waste, especially when moose populations are dwindling, to take such an incredible animal out of the population, simply for this man to win the ‘prize’ and get attention. It’s selfish of him to say the least.

          Basically, killed and never to breed for nothing. It’s way out of balance, and is not sustainable in the present world.

          I think it is wrong and unethical to continue as if it were 200 years ago, and it was wrong and unethical then.

          • rork says:

            It is not simply to win a prize. You go hunting and sometimes get lucky.
            Never to breed – looks like a very mature and attractive male to me. In Germany they shoot the maximal males because they fear they have produced too many offspring already.
            The moose are doing OK in parts of Montana or they wouldn’t be hunting them. We don’t have that many in MI, where they are increasing. Nevertheless we don’t hunt them, cause there aren’t that many.

            • Hiker says:

              Did you read the article? This hunter bypassed several smaller animals in hopes of a larger trophy. BTW this is NOT Germany. This animal was hunted in Washington.
              My main point is allowing smaller, less fit, males to survive and killing larger, more fit males may lead, in the long run, to weaker animals overall. This, it seems to me, runs counter to Nature’s ways. The more fit survive to pass on their genes.

              • Jeff says:

                One must understand the basics of herd dynamics of ungulates to intelligently opine here. That big bull’s genetics is well represented within the local herd. The best animals to remove via hunting are the older males and females who have already contributed to the herd during their prime years. The younger bulls will mature and breed—it is the most ethical move by a hunter to shoot older males and to let the younger ones mature to breeding status. The only drawback to shooting big bulls is they are chewier than a young cow or bull.

                • Hiker says:

                  Fallacy plain and simple. Many ungulates are not able to breed UNTIL they are older. They can’t compete with prime males. Elk, for instance sometimes only get ONE season to breed before they die. And Moose, SINCE THEY DON”T FORM HERDS, are another story completely. There is no way to tell, without genetic analysis, how much their “genetics is well represented”. They simply don’t have the same interactions with females that elk do. One prime bull elk may breed with dozens of females one year and NONE the next. Prime Bull Moose may breed with a handful of females if they are lucky.

                  Also, studies have shown that if the management goal of hunting is to reduce population then females should be hunted. They are the ones who give birth to the next generation. Ever wonder why, despite so much hunting, there are LOTS of white tail deer in the East? It’s because males are chosen as trophies over females. The males that survive breed all the females and the next generation is numerous.

                • idaursine says:

                  Also, not all hunters observe any kind of ethics – the poachers, etc.

                • Jeff says:

                  Bull elk have many years to breed and the biggest mature bulls have dominated harems and bred with dozens of cows by the time they are a mature 6×6 or bigger, same with big bull moose, dominant rams etc…, smaller bulls and rams frequently breed on the periphery of the big herds, thus they have numerous years to spread their DNA. Game management varies depending on whether the herd is targeted for growth (male only harvest), maintenance, or reduction (heavy female tags distribution. Not to mention trophy bucks and bulls are typically only allowed to be hunted after the rut of their species, so yes big bulls and bucks do a majority of the breeding in their local herds and whether it fits your narrative or not, they are actually the best animals to remove from the herd genetically, although young females are generally the best to eat.

                • Hiker says:

                  You are simply mistaken. First of all Moose do NOT form herds and thus have no harems. Second Bull elk don’t survive long after reaching their prime, when they breed the most, they usually live 6-8 years. Third, hunting season in the West usually overlaps breeding season by months. It’s your narrative that doesn’t fit the science. Don’t make up facts so you can justify your trophy hunting.
                  I learned all this while working and living amongst these animals for 25 years as a National Park Ranger and Wildlife tour guide. So you are wrong or all the science and experts I learned from are wrong, take your pick.

                • WM says:

                  Hiker says: “First of all Moose do NOT form herds and thus have no harems.”

                  I only can regurgitate what I read, because I’v not been around moose that much (AK mostly and occasionally seen them in WY, ID and WA, but never during breeding season. And, otherwise I have NEVER seen moose herd up).
                  But, you might want to check for the accuracy of your the second half of your statement is universally true. Large bull moose do, according to the literature, gather HAREMS in AK, Canada, and presumably Yellowstone and other areas in the lower 48.

                  Don’t know how reliable this source is, but do see the Breeding section:

                • Hiker says:

                  WM, I don’t think they are right. I’ve had hundreds of sightings of Moose, year-round and only rarely have seen them in groups. The males usually fight each other for access to one female. I just did a quick search and ALL responses show them as solitary.

                • Immer Treue says:

                  On Isle Royale, I believe August of “88” I observed 7 bulls feeding in close proximity to one another on water succulents in Feldtman Lake. But that’s Isle Royale.

                • Hiker says:

                  I once saw about 50 moose feeding on Antelope Bitterbrush on the south end of Jackson Hole. They were all in the space of a football field. So sometimes, based on feeding, they will congregate. Usually if there are more than one it’s a Cow and Calf. Although I have seen two or three Bull Moose together during the winter.

                • Jeff says:

                  The elk rut is over by the time general rifle season begins in most western states. General rifle begins 9/26 annually in Wyoming–right as the rut winds down. Most state don’t get into the swing until October, after the rut. There certainly isn’t “months” of overlap as the seasons aren’t that long. Moose certainly are gregarious during the fall with one dominant bull courting and breeding numerous cows. This behavior is well documented. I’m not a trophy hunter I prefer young animals preferably females, but like most hunters, four legged included, I’m opportunistic taking whatever I have the best chance of harvesting. Ranchers typically rotate bulls every couple years and wild herds wind up doing the same–again I’m not into racks on the wall, but from a pure biological standpoint harvesting old bulls and non-reproducing cows is the best management practice.

                • Hiker says:

                  Jeff, once again you are wrong. I have been hiking in October in Grand Teton N.P. while elk were in full rut all around me. Elk rut, at a minimum, goes from September to October, even some in November, I’ve seen this first hand. Hunting occurs in that area during that EXACT time, I’ve seen it.
                  Yes, Bull Moose try to mate with as many females as they can, but DO NOT FORM HERDS. So every fight with another bull is over ONE female. I’ve seen this as well. Your ‘best management practice’ usually involves the state trying to maximize numbers so they can sell more hunting licenses.

                • Elk375 says:

                  Hiker, I am afraid that you are very wrong on moose and harems. I have hunted moose in Montana, Alaska, Yukon and British Columbia.

                  In 1978, I was hunting moose with a friend who of mine who lived in the Yukon. We were gone three of four days and one day I spotted moose. A 65 to 70 inch bull with 10 to 12 cows surrounding the bull, this was the height of the rut. The moose were 2 miles away and my friend was only looking for a meat bull close to home.

                  I have read many hunting articles of hunters in the north finding bulls with 6 to 12 cows. One of the purposes of cows is to watch for predators as the bulls are only interested in breeding and not watching for danger.

                  I think in the lower 48 there not the numbers of moose so a bull would not be able to gather a large harem.

                • WM says:

                  Is it possible different sub-species of moose in different parts of North America have different mating practices? Or, even different populations of the same sub-species have different mating practices? Sort of like the perceived shyness of the Roosevelt elk of the NW Pacific coast, as compared to the Rocky Mountain elk sub-species. Or, is it possible that different behaviors evolve – just as we have learned elk may take one of two tactics to avoid wolf predators – large herd, or small inconspicuous groups of less that 5-8 (I forgot the numbers that have been theorized in some researh couple years back)? You are both citing anecdotal behavior in different locations BC as compared to the lower 48 ( and possible sub-species differences).

                • WM says:

                  Sorry, Elk375, who is a very knowledgeable wildlife resource, also mentions other northern latitude locations than BC – Yukon Territory, AK as well as lower 48.

                • Hiker says:

                  Elk and WM, all I know is what I’ve been taught as a National Park Ranger and what I witnessed. WM, I agree that there might be regional or subspecies differences (or both). Elk, it sounds like you are very knowledgeable about Moose up North, I am knowledgeable about Moose in the South.
                  The whole point to this is that big, prime animals should be contributing to the gene pool. When they are hunted as trophies that ‘fitness’ is removed. My whole point, that Jeff disagrees with, is that trophy hunting may damage the gene pool over time. Have any of you seen old pictures from 100 years ago of the huge elk that were hunted in the Rockies? They look bigger, with bigger antlers, than anything I’ve ever seen.
                  We may disagree about the Moose but my other points remain. Bull elk don’t live long. Their rut coincides with much of the hunting season. Trophy hunting does NOT control long term population numbers. State agencies manage these herds to maximize numbers and sales of hunting licenses, their main source of income. I think that is a conflict of interest. They don’t have the health of the ecosystem as a priority.

                • Hiker says:

                  And here I disagree with you Immer. For countless generations these WILD animals have been doing things one way. I believe it’s arrogant that humans think they can do better than Nature. Remember that one big bull male is only one of many more. All those prime bulls are struggling at the same time to mate. It also took him years to reach that point in his life. Years when he did NOT breed. Then he finally becomes a prime bull only to be shot in the fall, during breeding season? All so a trophy hunter can show off. Maybe I’m wrong, but isn’t that selfish?

              • Nancy says:

                Hiker, I have seen upwards of 5 cow moose hanging together but its usually in the winter months, in areas that have good forage such as willows & smaller aspen.

                A few years ago there was a record 11 moose hanging out in in a guy’s pasture, in a subdivision up the road because the idiot had stock piled hay bales for his horses (with no fencing around it) and it was a big free for all. But that subdivision has always been know for its moose population in the winter months. Lots of planted scrubs, manicured lawns and young trees to feast on.

                I think fence lines might also dictate how moose hang out. If a cow moose calves in a pasture enclosed with page wire, she is pretty much stuck there until she can find a gap for her calf to get through or crawl under. I’ve seen a few moose calves, running up and down this type of fencing and mother moose is on the other side encouraging her calf on.

                • Hiker says:

                  Yes, I too have seen temporary groups of moose. Usually involving food. Once again this whole thread started with me posting the article about a hunter who shot a record moose in WA. My feeling is that trophy hunting takes prime males out of the gene pool where they belong. What are the long term consequences of trophy hunting?

                • Immer Treue says:

                  In regard to the gene pool, removing that one “big” contributor would allow others to breed, increasing variation in the gene pool, thus strengthening, said pool. Variation is the key to natural selection.

                • Hiker says:

                  I disagree with you here. Posted my reply above by mistake.

                • idaursine says:

                  Isn’t it awful that people set up such an obstacle course for wildlife? I wish we’d be even a little more mindful of this. I see the same thing with deer and fawns trying to get around all the fencing, and the fawns weren’t having much luck.

                  Hiker, I agree with your comment at 6:53 today – we don’t allow for the possibility of being wrong, and our own interests and activities color our actions.

              • Nancy says:

                “Our results here contrast notably with these effects of ‘normal’ predation and reinforce the point that the sorts of selectivity associated with human predation can lead to uniquely severe impacts on harvested populations”


            • idaursine says:

              Please. It is the equivalent of a ‘prize’ – biggest, best, for bragging rights.

              Even if animals are not doing okay, hunting is still allowed, like the sage grouse, with a convenient rationale for it. I’d like to see just how well they are doing in Montana. I don’t think any animal is really doing well in today’s world.

            • idaursine says:

              I should have written ‘never to breed again’. While I am sure this magnificent animal has passed his strong and healthy genetics on in the past, he will never do so in the future, and we really need to consider the future of our ever-stressed wildlife instead of immediate gratification for ourselves.

              The man doesn’t need or have to hunt for food. It is a choice, and I don’t think we can be so selfishly selective anymore in what we eat. He could have chosen the more prevalent deer and elk. Or any of the millions of cattle, sheep, pigs and chickens that are slaughtered daily to feed him.

              To save money, I’ve heard some say, but none of these people look like they are poor. Taking a life to save money, I don’t know about that.

              It just all comes off as greedy and self-indulgent.

              • Immer Treue says:

                By shooting a deer or elk, one:
                1. Arguably eats healthier meat.
                2. Contributes less over the year towards the factory production of livestock for consumption.
                3. Contributes to less waste in regard to crops grown for the purpose of feeding livestock instead of feeding people; and perhaps a bit toward reduction of CO2 in atmosphere in the long chain of livestock production.
                4. Saves a gobsmack of money over time in the purchase of meat, in particular if you live/hunt in zones where one can take more than one deer per season, and or hunt multiple seasons (archery, rifle, muzzle loader) and are fortunate enough to take deer each seasonal fraction.
                5. Provide healthier snacks for dogs in regard to meat scraps, and antlers, while processing their own food.
                6. Actually being part of the system,of life and death. Helps one understand and appreciate, there’s only right now.
                7. Last and least, the trophy.

                • idaursine says:

                  I don’t know about that Immer, humans are far removed from the system of life and death in modern times. It’s one-sided – only the poor animals die.

                  We’re not so forgiving when a person dies in the wild from an encounter with wildlife. That’s part of the cycle too, IMO.

                  Hunters helping combat climate change is negligible too, I think – with nearly 8,000,000,000 people in the world!

                • Hiker says:

                  Good points Immer. I don’t have a prob. with hunting for food. This chain started with my post about a big moose shot in WA. The hunter said that he ignored other, smaller, animals in hopes of getting the trophy. THAT’S what I have trouble with. Why destroy the BEST just so one could have a great trophy. Once again, I respect hunting for food, I’ve eaten elk, deer, and pronghorn shared with me. It’s hunting just for the trophy I find troubling.

                • Elk375 says:


                  If you had read the article in the Spokane Review the hunter had seen several smaller bulls in the early part of the season. There were 2 days left in the moose hunting season and the hunter and his partner decided to try a different area. A bull moose was spotted and the hunter shot the moose. When they approach the dead moose then they realized the size of the antlers. The hunter though that he had killed a representative bull moose. The moose the hunter shot was legal, enough said. Sometimes you get a big one and other times a representative animal and other times you eat tag soup.

                  There are two organizations the measure antlers and horns, The Safari Club International and the Boone and Crockett Club. This moose was shot in Washington and is considered a Shiras moose. The B&C measurements are approximately 178 points which puts it according to the 1999 Big Records Edition at the 45th largest Shiras Moose. The SCI measures differently and this moose is considered no. 1 in their record book. SCI measures the length of all points, B&C measures differently.

                  This reminds me: I have to put in for my moose tag tomorrow. I hope I draw a tag and get a big bull. Moose hunting is one of my favorite hunts.

                • Hiker says:

                  Thank you for your thoughts Elk, all very good points. I think my point remains valid: he bypassed smaller BULL Moose hoping for more. He had chances and ignored them. If all you want is to eat, why wait?

                • WM says:

                  Hiker, I think you will find that modern wildlife management programs in many states now have rather complicated harvest formulas for determining bull/buck harvests which, to some degree, preserve larger males of the species to pass on their genetic material. Spike only or 3 point or less units or seasons within an annual hunting season increases the statistical chance some of the larger and more mature males make it another year.

                  Of course, you will want to mention in your large bull preservation manifesto that wolves in Yellowstone often take some of the largest bulls, which are otherwise healthy, but fatigued and underweight from their breeding work during the rut. Presumably this same phenomenon exists elsewhere wolves occupy landscape with large rut-weakened bull elk. Dan Stahler and Doug Smith died some research work on this in 2005 or so. Perhaps you will want to read it:

                • Hiker says:

                  Excellent reply. Yes wolves take out large male elk who are exhausted from the rut. All the more reason to AVOID human hunting of them. I’m glad to hear that many hunting seasons adjust to preserve larger males.

                • WM says:

                  To be candid, Hiker, I think most hunters (especially the trophy hunter) would prefer the wolves not enter into the equation. And, the non-trophy hunter would just prefer no or fewer wolves, because they reduce the likelihood of success for various reasons. I usually give an account of my ID elk hunt, if affected by wolves, in any given year. They were present where we hunt and for the first time in 25 years we did not harvest a bull elk (and we would as readily harvest a spike or brush rack over a large bull). We couldn’t just pull up camp. It takes a full day to set it up. So, it would take another 2 days to relocate. Saw more wolf shit than elk droppings- that means they were hiding in the brush on higher elevations and steeper ground. And, the bulls are not vocal as they usually are in breeding season, because the wolves key in on their location. So, I’m not a particularly happy camper/hunter this past year.

                • Hiker says:

                  Like it or not you must now compete with wolves. Every bit of science and research shows how wolves benefit the entire ecosystem.

                • WM says:

                  I do not agree with you regarding benefits of wolves in entire ecosystems. This may be true in an unmanaged ecosystem, but we largely live in managed ecosystems outside national parks. Terrestrial trophic cascade is still unproven despite the BS that Bill Ripple at Oregon State would have the gullible believe,, or some trumped up over-simplistic diagram that appeared in National Geographic.

                • Hiker says:

                  You are welcome to your opinion. Even though I disagree with you, I respect your right to your viewpoint. Regardless, Wolves are on the ground, I saw one staring at me once in my living room and I cherish that memory.

                • Hiker says:

                  WM, check out the hunter success rate 2018:

                  44.8% isn’t bad is it?

                • Hiker says:

                  WM, sorry, this is for Wyoming Elk in 2018.

              • Louise Kane says:


                The fallacies of hunting as conservation. I think its bizarre that people argue that animal populations benefit by removing the biggest and best, as it suits humans. Somehow natural selection does not work that way in nature but it suits hunter arguments.

    • Louise Kane says:

      I find all of the rationale to be offensive. The attitude that somehow humans and their wildlife management skills are more adept at advancing healthy populations than evolution. Millions of years of evolution, and in the last several hundred we have precipitated a sixth extinction without cataclysmic meteors, asteroids, or weather events. Through all of our infinite self serving greed, ignorance and self serving practices we have somehow overpopulated to the point that we threaten our planet’s continued existence, we have diminished many species so they are counted in the double digits (and still continue to allow hunting of those species to protect livestock) and use hunter focused statistics and language to justify trophy hunting. The excuse always being…what’s the problem it was legal. “He shot a legal”… plug in the animal. Why exactly do you believe that taking out the biggest, oldest and smartest animal will benefit the herd? Its a nice theory though.

      While this link is about elephants the same is known about whales, and other herd animals. How supremely elitist and entitled to think that we should be targeting the animals that have been smart enough to survive the longest or that have desirable attributes that could be passed on genetically.

      • Louise Kane says:

        not to mention these animals must compete against sophisticated technology that virtually assures success. I know…I’ll hear the outrage about the skill needed, the expertise, the patience.
        I might believe some of that if humans did not use, horses, cars, suvs, phones, maps, bows and arrows, rifles, traps, snares and poison. Lets see how well you hunt without the tools.

      • Elk375 says:

        Louise Kane,

        In Alaska generally a legal moose is defined as a bull moose with 50 plus inch antler spread or 3 to 4 brow tine points depending upon the area. Why? Small moose are easier the find and kill and if killed/harvested they will not grow up to be big bulls. By having a minimum size restriction allows more hunters in the field and reduces the kill. I think the state fish and game knows how to manage for optimal moose numbers.

        In Alaska, a hunter must remove all meat from the field before the antlers are removed. Meat includes the four quarters, loins, brisket, rib and neck meat. The finds can be up to $5000 for wanton waste of meat or shooting a substandard bull plus forfeiture of all hunting equipment.

        • Hiker says:

          Elk you said “I think the state fish and game knows how to manage for optimal moose numbers. ” (read money from hunting licenses). Maybe that’s part of the problem, it’s NOT just about numbers. If we take Nature as our guide it’s about fitness. The more fit the better. How do animals measure fitness in each other? In antler bearing animals it’s the size of the antler that matters, it demonstrates fitness. SO… by managing just for numbers they might be ignoring Natural Law and promoting the reproduction of less fit individuals.

          • Louise Kane says:

            Exactly hiker just one of the problems with the eY state fish and game departments work

            • Hiker says:

              It just seems like a lot of our Natural Resource Agencies do the opposite of what Nature intended. Almost like money is more important than science. HMMM!!

          • rork says:

            Often mistaken, but never in doubt.
            If we protect the largest males we might get larger males, but we might also be setting up a genetic bottleneck locally. You completely ignore that. This is not Germany, but populations have gene pools both places.
            Large antlers are correlated to fitness btw.

            • Nancy says:

              The North American Wildlife Conservation Model
              None as the Seven Sisters for Conservation

              Sister #1 – Wildlife is Held in the Public Trust
              In North America, natural resources and wildlife on public lands are managed by government agencies to ensure that current and future generations always have wildlife and wild places to enjoy.

              Sister #2 – Prohibition on Commerce of Dead Wildlife
              Commercial hunting and the sale of wildlife is prohibited to ensure the sustainability of wildlife populations.

              Sister #3 – Democratic Rule of Law
              Hunting and fishing laws are created through the public process where everyone has the opportunity and responsibility to develop systems of wildlife conservation and use.

              Sister #4 – Hunting Opportunity for All
              Every citizen has an opportunity, under the law, to hunt and fish in the United States and Canada.

              Sister #5 – Non-Frivolous Use
              In North America, individuals may legally kill certain wild animals under strict guidelines for food and fur, self-defense and property protection. Laws restrict against the casual killing of wildlife merely for antlers, horns or feathers.

              Sister #6 – International Resources
              Wildlife and fish migrate freely across boundaries between states, provinces and countries. Working together, the United States and Canada jointly coordinate wildlife and habitat management strategies. The Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 demonstrates this cooperation between countries to protect wildlife. The Act made it illegal to capture or kill migratory birds, except as allowed by specific hunting regulations.

              Sister #7 – Scientific Management
              Sound science is essential to managing and sustaining North America’s wildlife and habitats. For example, researchers put radio collars on elk to track the animals’ movements to determine where elk give birth and how they react to motor vehicles on forest roads

              Maybe its time to revisit and revise the Seven Sisters? Because its a given Sister #2 could be adjusted in eastern states, where deer populations are out of control. Food banks, the elderly and poor would certainly benefit from the surplus.

              Sister #2 – Prohibition on Commerce of Dead Wildlife
              Commercial hunting and the sale of wildlife is prohibited to ensure the sustainability of wildlife populations.

              And Sister #5 is a joke and been tweaked to satisfy a few.

              Sister #5 – Non-Frivolous Use
              In North America, individuals may legally kill certain wild animals under strict guidelines for food and fur, self-defense and property protection. Laws restrict against the casual killing of wildlife merely for antlers, horns or feathers.

              Trapping fur bearing animals on public lands should end. Not only does it endanger the public, who enjoy those lands but how many pets, hunting dogs and endangered species have died because of trapping methods?

              Rather than insist livestock raisers protect their valuable investments, federal agencies were formed to trap, shoot & aerial hunt down predators that know no boundaries, predators that are vital in maintaining a balanced ecosystem in what’s left of wilderness areas.

              And then there’s sport hunting. “Laws restrict against the casual killing of wildlife merely for antlers, horns or feathers” Hunters come from all over the country to bag big bulls and bucks, for their antlers or horns. Does it disrupt the gene pool? The jury is still out on that one.


              • Hiker says:

                I think it definitely disrupts the gene pool.

                • Nancy says:

                  I too thought it did Hiker but do some research, it may have more to do with habitat restrictions and old bulls/bucks retiring from fights during the rut.

                • idaursine says:

                  It has to contribute – because wildlife is threatened from all sides. I think all of us who care about wildlife do lots of reading and research, and it is ongoing.

              • idaursine says:

                Sister #6 is ignored too. Each state (at least in the West) claims wildlife as “Mine!”, and does not respect migration, dispersing and genetic health.

                Just look at the grizzly (mis)management.

              • idaursine says:

                I also think that just bringing back a few predators or leaving the coyotes alone will help with the overpopulation of deer in the East. But the policy of the West dominates; removing wolves from Endangered Species listing across the country, despite their not having recovered in a lots of empty and suitable range, where there will not be much conflict with humans, if any.

                I don’t think we should assume that everyone will want deer on their menu. Man and woman do not live on bread alone!

            • Hiker says:

              Not sure I agree with you about genetic bottlenecks. If left to Nature we would see larger, more fit bulls breeding in their prime. But, their prime doesn’t usually last too long. Then the next generation of prime bulls takes over. That’s how Nature has done it for a long time.

              • idaursine says:

                Totally agree. The arrogance of thinking we can manage better than Nature has done for millennia – when in fact we’ve screwed things up so badly as to be almost unfixable now. Just look at climate change – everything is like dominoes falling.

  9. idaursine says:

    “Yeah, but it was legal.”

    Legal does not mean moral or ethical, and most times really just means convenient for human interest IMO, and immoral and unethical.

    Just the fact that hunting has downgraded over time from a necessity for food and/or safety, to a ‘sport’ and ‘pastime’, really gives pause.

    Our biology hasn’t kept up with our technology and progress, because we still have the ancient killer instinct.

  10. Nancy says:

    “But opponents fear the legislation will be used to justify the existence of bears and wolves outside of national parks and wilderness areas”

    • Hiker says:

      So ignorance is better? Of course it is, if it threatens your viewpoint.

    • idaursine says:

      I’m just shaking my head here. Some don’t want the oppressive control they have exercised for years threatened by the possible economic boon of tourism the study might show?

      But if it is for the legislature, it will affect policy decisions, no question. I just hope it is for the better and not (even) worse.

  11. idaursine says:

    While I’d hardly call it a ‘mini baby boom’ as some reports are, it’s a relief and a welcome good sign in a population of less than 500 in the world, est. 430. There had been no new calves spotted in awhile, none last year:

  12. rork says:

    There are a ton of articles about impossible burgers, which are made with heme produced by GMO yeast. Some of the things said and done by natural products people or Friends of Earth are hysterical. If the price of these products can come down, tremendous ecological good might be done, since raising animals for food on a small planet with too many people, unless it is tiny amounts of meat per person, is horrible for earth. What are the critics thinking?
    I get that people making money certain ways will have a biased view.

    • idaursine says:

      There is a lot of whining in the media that is childish and silly. Some of those impossible burgers look great, just about real. But personally, I lost my taste for real burgers, and don’t need a replacement of any kind.

  13. rork says: was pretty good and short.
    “It is ironic that an innovation that may be eco-friendly and sustainable must be readily dismissed by groups that claim to share those goals.”

    • idaursine says:

      What a mess! The extent of plastic pollution is shocking, simply for convenience’s sake.

      I miss the days of glass, and picking up tumbled beach glass on the shore, instead of tons of plastic. I’m trying to rid the use of plastic and disposable stuff. Surely we can was out glass and take a few minutes to clean things and reuse them.

      I wish it could all be burned as a fuel source, but that all comes with its own set of problems too. Like dominoes.

    • Immer Treue says:

      The precipice upon which we are perched is precarious. It doesn’t matter where you live, this stuff is in the air we breath. Air currents are global, so this stuff is global in distribution.its already been shown to be able to cross into cells. Just another nail in the coffin of wildlife, and perhaps our own.

  14. Mareks Vilkins says:

    ODFW submits wolf management plan

    The old plan allowed for hunts after two confirmed wolf depredations of livestock in an area. The new plan would allow hunts only after two confirmed depredations within a nine-month period

    Last week, the agency reported that Oregon was home to a record number of wolves, 20 years after the species returned to the state.

    The number of known wolves in Oregon at the end of 2018 was 137

    Confirmed wolf attacks on domesticated animals increased 65 percent from the previous year, with 28 confirmed incidents, most of them on calves. But the attacks have not kept pace with the increase in wolf population over the past nine years.

    compare the trend in Oregon vs Germany

    Wolves from Poland appeared in Germany in 2000 and now there are 73 confirmed packs and 30 pairs / Road traffic is the biggest danger to the animals: 140 of the around 200 dead wolves since 2000 died in road accidents. From May 2016 to April 2017, five wolves were reported to have been killed illegally./ The number of wolf attacks on livestock in Germany is growing, with more than 1,667 sheep and other farm animals killed, injured or going missing in 2017.

    Germany’s federal documentation center, DBBW, said attacks on livestock by wolves increased by some 66 percent in 2017 compared with the year before, with 472 cases registered.

    Most of the farm animals killed were sheep

    • WM says:

      Kind of looks like the old tales the Germans and Poles told about wolf depredation and why they should be killed whenever seen back in the 1700-1800’s was probably not so far fetched afterall. And, that the settlers to the New World carried those same prejudices was not unfounded, eh Mareks?

      The number of wolf attacks on livestock in Germany is growing, with more than 1,667 sheep and other farm animals killed, injured or going missing in 2017.66% increase in depredation on livestock in 2017. Hmmm.

      • Mat-ters says:

        The 1700-1800 repercussions of a wolf attack on a family of that era was profound. THOSE that villainize the good people of those times,as the do with the settlers of the west, need the karma and the pleasure of a good thief in the night!

        • Hiker says:

          Heartily agree with you, Matters. NO ONE should be villainized if they are attacked by any wildlife. I support ANY self-defense against ANY attack, wildlife or otherwise. That’s why I keep a loaded weapon in my house, along with many knives. Anyone messes with me or my family and friends will suffer.

          • Mat-ters says:

            Well thank you Hiker for sticking up for those affected. Villainizing the rancher is the state of the art for the no-limit PC. They have no other recourse to the affect of unmanaged predators other than to villainize those on the front line. “One Northern Michigan farmer named John Koski is probably the biggest “villain”. I was appalled at what the Michigan Liberal Media did to that elderly Gentleman.

            There is no doubt that Mr Koski is not going to win too many awards for his animal husbandry. One has to wonder if Mr Koski the 70 year old didn’t have the energy to put up new fences, to be moving his cattle in and out of different pastures daily or take care of three donkeys that were expected to scare wolves. NO Doubt he had poor animal husbandry techniques BUT, those putting wolves into his PRIVATE land pastures should hold some of that blame! I can’t think of one 70 year old that has the same energy they had at 30 or 40! Expecting him to put flaggies on the fences and electrify his fence, move cattle a couple times a day, feed their darn donkey’s all so fools like the HSUS can create controversy so “donate now” buttons get pressed. It’s common knowledge that John had had enough and gave up after years of torment from not knowing what the morning would bring on his herd! I don’t blame him for pretty much letting the wolves eat his cattle JUST to prove what the wolves can do! Keeping wolves at the number in the Michigan wolf management plan would have gone a long way at alleviating some of the pressure on John. BUT, the” no-limit PC’s “maximum wolves at maximum cost to taxpayers, livestock owners, pet owners and game herds almost assures us that John would have continuous issues every year for eternity.
            To this day, they never changed him with anything that I’m aware of in regards to wolves and livestock depredations. They brought charges against John regarding the mules he was expected to care for in order to scare wolves.

            John has since sold that acreage falling prey to the ” no-limit PC”. Running people off of private lands is what it is about isn’t it? They claim wolves don’t run private land owners off their property…….not true in MI state is it.

            • Hiker says:

              Matters, I am in favor of people protecting themselves from attack. That means self-defense. If a rancher loses livestock they can get a depredation permit or rely on the government for help. While I am sympathetic to the individual you mention above, maybe if he can’t do the work or hire others to help (did you offer help?) he should retire. Like Ida says below ‘there’s a a lot more livestock around then before’.

              I am still in favor of wolves and don’t mind them for neighbors. When was the last time wolves attacked a person? It’s quite rare. Yet they are still demonized in our culture. Needlessly so. Our thoughtless cruelty is demon enough.

            • rork says:

              Koski was worse than incompetent. He is a criminal. That some ranchers quit is a good thing and he is the perfect proof of that.

              And the cost to taxpayers, responsible livestock owners, and responsible pet owners has been miniscule.

          • Mat-ters says:

            Hiker, It looks like you support the 2nd Amendment! Thank you I don’t like to have “loaded” guns around…. mine are locked up. I have to many rug rats rat that visit…. we estimate 70 (all ages)of them for our Easter egg hunt this weekend.

            Thank you for making our society safer. Those that are venomous towards the 2nd amendment don’t realized that they benefit from the deterrent of home invasions. Comparing the 50/100,000 murders in gun control Mexico to the 5/100,000 in the 2nd amendment US shows the contrast. Digging into those numbers shows that the drug cartel MS13 members act differently to home invasions when here in the US vs back in Mexico…..

            • Hiker says:

              While not a hunter, I grew up in L.A. with guns (loaded) in the house. I was taught by my father, at a young age, how to shoot. I still have an old 22 rifle from those days. I truly respect the rights of our citizens to protect themselves. The facts are clear, however, that I feel the need for protection mostly from my fellow humans. I don’t take a gun hiking, I’m not afraid of the wildlife. I do take my gun to L.A. When I was a National Park Ranger one of my ‘jokes’ during my bear talks was that a bear never pointed a gun at me, but people have.

      • Mareks Vilkins says:

        unfounded is only your spin, WM – business as usual

        before the settlers exterminated bisons, elks etc they exterminated indigenous people … probably with some legit justification in WM’s eyes

        • Mareks Vilkins says:

          as usual knee-jerk reactions from the rabid gnat

          in Germany there are 600-700 wolves and increase in sheep depredation is seen only for the last couple years

          and there will not be a wolf hunting season in the near future as ungulate costs to crops and forestry run in hundreds of millions euro every year (apart from ungulate-vehicle collusions which cost 500 million euro every year)

          depredated sheep are compensated in Germany and since 2021 the EU funds will fully compensate livestock depredations and protection measures in all EU member states

          bottom line: the poor US cannot tolerate even the loss of 20 cattle and will allow gunning down ‘the problem wolves’ whereas in Germany they are allowed to recolonize the whole Germany before wolf hunting will be considered

          • idaursine says:

            Thank you, Mareks.

          • Hiker says:

            Very interesting insight. Livestock losses viewed as acceptable to prevent other damage caused by too many deer! I wondered what the natural prey of wolves in Germany/Poland was. I didn’t know they had so many.

          • Mat-ters says:

            “fully compensate” in your dreams!

          • Hiker says:

            Matters, honestly who has the time to read all your nonsense? My eyes started to glaze over when I realized this is just a repeat. Everyone here knows how you feel about wolves and yet I’m guessing your endless rants have changed nothing.

          • WM says:

            Those darned Europeans and their historic and current distaste for wolves. This time it is the Russians:


            • WM says:

              And now it is the fear of cross-breeding of wolves with dogs in Italy. So why should farmers be concerned about this?


              And, Norway plans to kill half its wolf population:

              So, imagine many more wolves on the landscape in so many countries 150 years ago or earlier. Were the fears of farmers or rural dwellers irrational at the time? Was there justification for settlers to the new world to bring these prejudices with them as they also encountered wolves in the wilderness of the New World, and saw threats to livestock and maybe even humans in some circumstances back then?

            • WM says:

              German Minister of Agriculture wants to loosen restrictions on wolf removal (guess things are not as rosy and conflict free as Mareks wants you to believe: https:


              • Hiker says:

                Seems like the conflict with wolves mostly involves livestock. So, is it worth the conflict to have wolves? That is the central question. I vote YES for wolves. If need be we compensate for livestock losses like we have been doing all along.

                • Hiker says:

                  Don’t forget that wolf depredations are a fraction of the deaths livestock suffer. Weather, accidents, dogs, cars, etc. all kill WAY more than wolves.

              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                The EU population of livestock: there were 88 million bovine animals, 150 million pigs, and 100 million sheep and goats in 2017.

                In France sheep population declined from 13m in 1980 to less than 7m in 2017 – that is, wolves have nothing to do with this trend. Besides in French Alps every year 46 000 sheep die due to disease, fire, drowning etc. In 2009 French Alpine pastures got 240m euro in subsidies. Wolves can only dream about such subsidies. Then there are 60 000 stray dogs roaming in France. Of course, ignorant WM knows nothing about it as he is busy bitching about Wielgus and insisting that every cow matters.

                German farmers quitting dairy as high production costs take toll


                Europe’s meat and dairy production must halve by 2050, expert warns


            • Mareks Vilkins says:

              you are desperate WM

              for starters, learn which countries are member states of the EU / how many wolves are in the EU / which countries make the core of wolf meta-population

              in Germany for years some right-wing populists try to apply the same anti-immigrant language to wolves – yawn

              try harder, one-dimensional gnat

              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                majority of the US colonists consisted of English and Scots who exterminated the wolf in EN & SCO long time before 1800

                do not want to pontificate about the differences between EN vs the US livestock operation in the 18th and 19th centuries? and how about habitat and prey species in Europe vs the US in the 18th and 19th centuries?

                bottom line: the EU countries have two times more wolves than the Lower48 and the gap will grow in near future (thanks to wolf population growth in GER, FRA, POL)

                How Many Wolves (Canis lupus) Fit into Germany?

                assuming an average pack home range size of 200 km2 and an average pack size of 4–5 wolves … Existing wolf habitat models predict suitable habitat for 400–441 wolf packs in Germany

                • WM says:

                  I understand compensatory and additive mortality concepts just fine. It is just who or what gets credit for taking the prey that is problematic and integral to the issue.

                  Yes, Immer. I hope you found the text interesting for the time it was originally written and updated for even today. I do wonder what Hayakawa would have to say about internet blogs, instant “news” from questionable sources and how it all affects society and the way we deal with each other.

              • WM says:

                For all your blither, Mareks, you miss the point. Everywhere around the world where there are wolves increasing in number, density and range, there is increasing conflict. And, it is spilling over into political action to reduce the tension by reducing the number.

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  your reading comprehension is sorely missing, WM – when politicians cannot solve structural animal husbandry problems they scapegoat wolves.

                  At least in the EU it is restricted only to moaning in mass media but neither in Germany nor Spain or Italy or Poland there will be wolf hunting in near future

                • WM says:

                  Oh, my reading comprehension is just fine, thank you, Mareks. It’s not solely “inability to solve animal husbandry problems.” It has to do with the entire prey base, and wolf impacts on them. Some problems are unique to certain geographic areas. in the US it is also impacts on wild game such as deer/elk/prong-horns, as well as domestic livesstock of all kinds, or even dogs. Did you know that in the 1990’s MN wolves ate domestic turkeys by the thousands if they could get to them?

                  It appears Poland is nearing a decision to allow wolf hunting after it was stopped in the mid-1990’s and now the population has doubled. The dampening factor thereseems to be wolf appetite for wild pigs which also tear up farmer fields, so there is that. Estonia (your native Latvia as well, as recently as 2014, but I don’t know about today) still hunts wolves as do several of the former Soviet bloc countries. They are hunted in Canada as well. At some point, I am relatively confident in saying in every Western state of the US and even EU countries, elsewhere in Europe or Asia, or wherever wolves are or will be found in larger biologically sustaining numbers, there will eventually be hunting for predator control, by agencies, designated hunters under contract or livestock owners, and possibly the public. As for sport, I am reluctant to say as that seems to be in flux – this from an internet source website which seems relatively current;

                  I do hope to see an article from Dr. Mech on the German wolves. You continually confuse my position on wolves, Mareks. I have said repeatedly on this forum that it will always be about the numbers, the range and the perceived impacts (real or imagined) that will affect wolf populations, wherever they are, and the politics that surround them. It is a part of the co-existence formula.

                  The problem with you, Mareks, is that you don’t like rational discussion of complex topics, and easily get lost in the briar patch (American idiom). And that is where the problem lies. Of course, you opine on mathematical concepts, “one-dimensional gnat,”(one dimension is a line, not a 3 dimensional object), or a diseased condition which is impossible for an insect to acquire,”rabid gnat,”for example. Exactly what are those, some sort of derogatory and demeaning terms you have to resort to because you can’t discuss a topic intelligently, eh sport?

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  This is another example that it is you who is unable of ‘rational discussion’ because you are lacking reading comprehension among many other factors.

                  In Europe there is abundance of ungulates who cause damage in billions euro every year (Germany, Austria, Sweden etc). You chose to ignore this fact of life to preach your usual garbage.

                  No, Poland will not start wolf hunting. There is African swine fever spreading across Europe not wolves eating too many wild boars.

                  If you think Scandinavian hunters are the mainstream on anything related to wolves you are off your rocker. They are involved in one court case after another.

                  Slovakia now hunts 4 times less wolves than back in 2013 – thanks to the pressure from Poland and Germany who were complaining that Slovak hunters kill dispersing wolves from Poland and therefore interferes with connenctivity on a population level. So much for the might of anti-wolf lobby in Germany, Poland and Slovakia.

                  Romania also stopped wolf hunting.

                  Sweden and Finland actually stopped wolf hunt last season, lol.

                  Then again you chose to ignore advice to learn which countries are the EU member states etc – so much for rational discussion.

                  Maybe read Washington State’s wolf conservation plan at last? Then you will learn a thing or two about wolf impact on local ungulate herds.

                  Should I refresh your memory about discussion of Idaho wolf density on TWN forum? You are not very good at maths and have a problem to apply even elementary arithmetic.

                  It’s amazing that you cannot remember that ‘one-dimensional’ was your favorite adjective /pejorative to describe TWN forum members who diagreed with your preaching. It seems you also lack a sense of proportion and irony.

                • WM says:

                  Actually, Mareks, I was involved in reading and reviewing the WA wolf management plan when it was first drafted thru the final, including the accompanying environmental impact statement and hearings on the plan adoption. You, sir, are an idiot.

                • Immer Treue says:

                  Forgive me for intruding on your thread, but I believe you recommended this to me years ago. Now that sunrise, and aroused dogs are up very early,I required new post dog walk wake up reading.


                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  you have a problem to understand even the basic ecology – like, for example, ungulate compensatory mortality concept

                • WM says:

                  I understand compensatory and additive mortality concepts just fine. It is just who or what gets credit for taking the prey that is problematic and integral to the issue.

                  Yes, Immer. I hope you found the text interesting for the time it was originally written and updated for even today. I do wonder what Hayakawa would have to say about internet blogs, instant “news” from questionable sources and how it all affects society and the way we deal with each other.

      • Louise Kane says:

        seems a disproportionate number of wolves killed to satisfy some deaths of livestock (sheep and other farm animals). Millions of wolves killed globally to prophylactically prevent possible or actual deaths of animals that are eventually slaughtered anyhow and are horribly destructive to habitat.

        On another note… pesticide impacts on deer

    • Mat-ters says:

      Example, John Kerry told us that 97& of climate scientist agree that catastrophic CC is imminent. That blatant lie only erodes the credibility of that side of the argument, especially when you find out that it’s not even close AND that almost all of those climate scientist have their hand in the cookie jar & their lively hood depends on funding for CC! Those “Facts” that the national media also feeds are examples of “WHY”.

      • Hiker says:

        I going to throw oil on this fire, Matters. Have you heard that the other planets in our solar system are also heating up? I wonder if that’s true?

        • Mat-ters says:

          Hiker, I have not heard that ….. BUT, I’m sure if we put the Farley Mowat wanbee’s on the case, they can whip up some science to …. blame wolf management for the heat. (wink)

      • rork says:

        Let me review that logic:
        1) if one person overstated the magnitude of the problem it proves there is no problem.
        2) if I can come up with a conspiracy theory there is no problem.
        3) if the press reports on the problem, and is not Fox News, there is no problem.
        4) if I can ignore for the moment that the sea is rising and getting more acidic, there is no problem, for the moment.

  15. idaursine says:

    IDK, what’s different today is that there is a (whole) lot more livestock and a whole lot less wolves, but still the old prejudice remains.

    European settlers brought that mindset with them, whether they were affected or not, a preemptive strike – on not just wolves, but the entire state of being of the continent. I don’t know if there are than many records of attacks on humans in the history of this nation – but a whole lot of records on what humans have done to each other and other living things.

    • Hiker says:

      I agree Ida. Let’s promote less destructive mindsets.

    • rork says:

      The good news is that in the US there are less sheep. Just 10% of what we once had. I still own allot of wool but other people seem fine with the newfangled stuff.

      (I buy used but perfect sweaters at resale. 5 or 6 dollars gets me a sweater worth over $100 regularly. Cashmere runs $7. A bit less guilt about supporting animal husbandry. There are a bunch of rich people in Ann Arbor, which helps. Popping tags is like finding hidden treasure – it’s fun.)

      • idaursine says:

        I’m considering that more and more – vintage and the fun of it too. 🙂

      • JEFF E says:

        another good resource for wool clothing is Army-Navy surplus stores.

  16. idaursine says:


    Torture goes out of fashion:

  17. Mareks Vilkins says:

    ‘Decades of denial’: major report finds New Zealand’s environment is in serious trouble

    Almost two-thirds of New Zealand’s rare ecosystems are under threat of collapse, and over the last 15 years the extinction risk worsened for 86 species, compared with the conservation status of just 26 species improving in the past 10 years.

    A massive rise in the country’s dairy herd over the last 20 years has had a devastating impact on the country’s freshwater quality …. groundwater failed standards at 59% of wells owing to the presence of E coli, and at 13% of the wells owing to nitrates. Some 57% of monitored lakes registered poor water quality, and 76% of native freshwater fish are at risk of or threatened with extinction. A third of freshwater insects are also in danger of extinction.

    Forest and Bird said the main culprits for worsening freshwater quality were the intensive use of fertilisers, irrigation and cows.

  18. Hiker says:

    Known wolf hater poached a wolf in GTNP, then claims it was an accident. This guy is a guide for hunters and claims he didn’t know where he was! This happened during the last government shutdown when there were fewer rangers on staff. Coincidence? I think not.

    • idaursine says:

      I hadn’t heard the ‘known wolf hater’ braggart bragging part. Just the ‘I didn’t know, sorry, didn’t see the sign, etc.’ part. But I expected something like that and, tada!, was not surprised by the confirmation. I wish I would be surprised one day.

    • Mat-ters says:

      It’s pretty hard not to know where you are now days with electronics. Even during the “flip phone” days there were still things that you could take to tell you where you are…. Hard to believe…. I’ve hunted Slough Creek north of the park….Gotta know where you are! Those signs are easy to miss in the more remote locations…..

      • Hiker says:

        And yet, according to the article, they knew they passed a boundary sign. ““I looked at them,” he told Armitage at his Kelly home the morning of Jan. 9. “I actually pointed them out to [redacted]. I said, ‘There’s the park boundary.’””.

        I have been there many times, it’s not hard to know your way. Notice it say’s ‘at his Kelly home’… this guy actually lives a few miles from where the poaching took place. He knows that place well (as a resident, “third-generation Jackson Hole rancher”, and a hunting guide).

      • idaursine says:

        Sounds like you’re having a crowd over for the holiday Matters – hope you enjoy!

  19. Nancy says:

    Way too early in the spring for this:

    Could this be why:

    “It is estimated that we are losing about 5,000 acres per day across the west to weeds. Their seeds are spread by wild animals, domestic livestock, pets, people and vehicles”

    • idaursine says:

      Awwwww, and her favorite photographer, I bet.

      Watch her closely, National Parks!

    • Rich says:


      Actually she is more than a minor celebrity with a nationwide if not worldwide following. Tom Mangelsen and Todd Wilkenson published a book titled “Grizzlies of Pilgrim Creek” documenting her life and legacy. It is definitely worth a read if you haven’t already done so.

      • Hiker says:

        As far as I know she hasn’t starred in any movies yet. Hence the ‘minor’ celebrity. But … if you are into bears then definitely NOT minor.

        BTW I’ve seen her and her cubs many times as well as 610, her daughter. From my experience NOTHING is more exciting for the average tourist than seeing a Griz in the wild.

  20. Immer Treue says:

    Wisconsin DNR Investigating Dogs Killed By Poisoning

    Collateral Damage?

  21. timz says:

    • idaursine says:

      (Attempts at) Old-fashioned fear-mongering don’t do much to help their cause. We think it’s still the 1800s in the West, that seems to come from 900 over there. 🙁

  22. idaursine says:

    The ‘cycle of life and death’ is heavily weighted in favor of human life, at least in the Western world, its religions and philosophies.

    Nowadays, it means that an animal has to have its life taken in favor of life, whether for food, experimentation, recreation (probably the worst reason and least defensible reason).

    But, if we were to give up or reduce our reliance on factory farmed meat, and didn’t hunt our decreasing and stressed wildlife either, we’d really be doing the world and the climate a favor!

    Educating children about where their food and meat comes from is better than teaching them to kill, and to desensitize them to killing.

    • idaursine says:

      ^^’taken in favor of human life’, that should read.

    • rork says:

      I don’t know what it is like where you live, but we are up to our necks in deer. They may be stressed from their being too many of them. Their densities need to be reduced. Everybody is supposed to know that.

      • Hiker says:

        Where are you talking about? I know that generally the East has way too many white-tailed deer. If population reduction is the goal then female deer need to be hunted more and males less. It’s got to be less about the trophy on the wall and more about meat and balance.

  23. idaursine says:

    I’ve said before that hunting ‘for food’ I might be able to tolerate, but that rationale is dishonest because many time it is used an excuse, and we do not ‘need’ to hunt for food in the modern era. Like hunting mountain lions for food, not generally eaten by humans, and it is a choice to do so.

  24. rork says:

    The crane hunting debate is on again in MI.
    Our DNR/NRC has the power to create hunting seasons for them but has made no move, and denies they are interested.
    I think that their tactic is that we will not only have to be up to our necks in cranes, but also the public will have to realize that we are up to our necks in cranes. Then a hunt can be called for without voters stopping it by referendum. It has to be obvious. Many thousands of cranes will be killed by farmers every year(and the meat wasted) before that happens. It is happening now but very few people know about it.
    Since cranes are now enemies of farmers, the farmers are incentivized to make their land worse habitat for cranes, whereas if they could lease rights to crane hunters they would have incentives to protect or even improve their habitat for cranes (as they do with deer and turkey). St. Aldo taught us that over 80 years ago, but most voters do not understand that.
    If the clean water act is gutted land owners will have tremendous powers to obliterate crane habitat. Where I live wetlands are incredibly important for wildlife. We have at least 20 kinds, and the energy flux and diversity of the life in them is astonishing. It is allot of the landscape. Farmers can’t farm in them, but they can be amazing for agriculture if drained. And pretty much lifeless.

    Some people against crane hunts have logic like this:
    “If it is bad for hunting then it is good, no matter how bad it is.”

    • Hiker says:

      Very interesting, thank you for sharing this, I had no idea. Yes, I believe hunting CAN be a valuable management tool, if done right. Defining what is right is the issue.

    • idaursine says:

      Wetlands are important for wildlife everywhere. I live in a beautiful wetlands area too. It’s tough, weeding out the bad hunters and psychopaths ought to be something both sides do, hunters should not defend all who hunt.

      It’s tough, farm and ranchland or more huge housing developments? The latter is worse for the environment, I think.

      • Immer Treue says:

        “hunters should not defend all who hunt”.

        They don’t.

        • idaursine says:

          Oh but they do. Only in rare cases have I heard hunting communities speak out about the abuses. Florida, for example. But for the most part, anything goes.

        • idaursine says:

          A prime example are the predator slams, slays and other names for coyote killing contests and displays.

          This is not ethical hunting, and has no place in the modern world, if the reasons being for them were originally for farmers and ranchers. Today they have no purpose but delight in killing.

          I have read around the internet rumblings about how opposition to them is a threat to hunting. These terrible displays at least need to go, and that is something both sides should welcome.

        • Hiker says:

          As you can tell Immer, hunting is controversial. Not all Americans support hunting. It seems to me that hunting as a management tool needs to be done right or it becomes indefensible. The “right” way is the subject of debate, as you can see. I feel that it is an important tool and that most hunters are honorable. The problem is that the current way it’s done, with an emphasis on getting a trophy, seems to me backwards. It doesn’t follow Natural Law and disrupts the gene pool in the wrong direction. With all the problems we are facing this is just one more that can contribute to ecological decline.

          • idaursine says:

            Thank you. It is tiresome to go round and round and never anything accomplished. Hunting and ranching interests always take precedence, and it really is something from another era, and needs to be modified greatly to suit the modern world and all of its ecological challenges.

            The hunting contests need to , at the the very least. What useful purpose to they serve, except to encourage bloodlust? *shudders*

          • Immer Treue says:

            It’s not all about the trophy. The rank and file hunter gives a rat’s behind about the trophy, it’s about the meat.
            That’s like saying all fisherman are fishing for the trophy they can hange on the wall. It’s not.

            Where you and I find agreement is the way hunting is done. Shooting those bucks and bulls (which by itself alone emphasizes trophy) instead of does and cows keeps the populations artificially high thus we are bombarded with number of does and cows within populations and cow to calf ratios. It becomes more about money in regard to licenses funding game/fish/wildlife departments, and to do this game populations are managed for surplus numbers. The only way to control those numbers is through female take; one can also add severe winters and predation.

            Managing for those surplus numbers has begun to return to haunt us as per species and interspecies concerns such as CWD, and things like brain worm and liver flukes spreading from deer to moose.

            If one spends their time reading hunting blogs, the concentration of those obsessed with trophies is amplified. The folks with whom I hunt may have some mounts, but it’s always about the meat. There is absolutely no obsession with trophies.

            • Hiker says:

              Glad to hear about your hunting buddies. We need more voices like yours to balance things out.

              • idaursine says:

                I don’t know what you mean Hiker. Hunting and ranching voices already are the status quo and dominate all discussion.

                There needs to be other representation on the so-called wildlife boards, Oregon as the latest poor example.

                • Hiker says:

                  Immer makes good points. If hunting is done right, for the meat, it’s fine with me. I’ve eaten of it myself.

              • Immer Treue says:

                To anyone who is in accord with your stance, I’d highly recommend reading Baker’s book The American Hunting Myth. It fully explains what you are talking about.


                Excuse the self promotional review. The book was published in 1985, and its impact has been less than measurable.

              • idaursine says:

                But the point is, hunting isn’t done right a lot of the time. Here we go, round and round again, ending up at the same place.

                Poachers, those who shoot from roads, those who wantonly kill many deer and elk, and the deranged, killing contests, need to be addressed. If a hunter is one of the so-called ethical hunters, then they need to call out the other kind. I have read editorials by some hunters who were against the grizzly and wolf hunts.

                I don’t like hunting, I live in a rural area where people still hunt, my Dad and grandfather hunted in Maine, I believe the old-fashioned way. So I don’t just read about it. My husband lived in Idaho and had buddies also who hunted.

                It needs to be brought into the modern world, to reflect concern about much less and threatened wildlife because of human activities. For example, no hunting of sage grouse.

            • idaursine says:

              It’s hard to miss them, but what do you think about killing contests?

              Do you support them or are you willing to see them go into the trashbin of history in modern times?

              • rork says:

                There are over half a million hunters just in Michigan. A handful of them show up for coyote killing contests. I try to get my priorities straight, and apply power to where it matters. Trapping of Martin and Fisher for example, and I’m not sure we need to kill any bobcats either. We trap mink here. Most people are honored to observe the behavior of any of those, so the living animals are worth allot.

                I don’t talk down coyote killing contests on hunting blogs, but instead talk down killing coyotes, not that I argue it should be illegal;. The people doing it insist they are doing me a favor, but it’s utter BS. They just like doing it or are doing it for money. Coyotes are wonderful to observe, and doing interesting things in the food chain. Until I can get wolves, I’ll take them.

                • idaursine says:

                  Me too! We have coywolves, but still – wolves should be a part of our ecosystem where there is suitable habitat for them.

                  To me, if these contests don’t occur very often, no one will miss the contests if they are done away with. They provide no value to society and certainly not the ecology.

  25. idaursine says:

    “Steve Pedery, conservation director of Oregon Wild, called Nash’s appointment “a giant middle finger to the conservation community.””

    I honestly can’t believe it. There’s a comment that questions Nash’s name as being related to an Oregon rancher! Surely this can be challenged?

  26. idaursine says:

    Traditional hunting is firmly entrenched, ‘enshrined’ in state constitutions. It truly was about hunting for meat in the old days, deer and game birds like pheasant I remember my family talking about. Just a hunting rifle. I haven’t eaten it. Sage hen in Idaho.

    I would be happy just to see killing contests made illegal in all 50 states. Who could support them? We can propel ourselves full speed ahead into the modern world and then expect to hold on to outdated relics of tradition that no longer apply. We can’t have everything we want.

    • Hiker says:

      Ida, I agree with you that killing contests must stop. So does outdated policies emphasizing maximum prey populations and trophy taking. How is it not a conflict of interest when these state agencies are funded directly by hunting? They have one incentive, sell more licenses, science be damned.

      • idaursine says:

        I agree. These are things that need to be looked at. I think the entire system would be better! I personally don’t hunt and can’t see myself doing it – but I understand about those who do hunt for food and try to play by the rules.

        For both sides in most cases there is a love of wilderness. And I do think that the preservation of wild places depends on ethical hunters, maybe even some ethical farmers.

        I could not bear it if a big housing development was dropped into the middle of a wild place, and resident kicking out the wildlife.

  27. idaursine says:

    “The Trump administration failed to adequately consider oil spills, climate change and the welfare of polar bears in its expedited study of proposed drilling in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, according to comments published by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service this week.”

  28. Moose says:

    Climate change and genetic suicide dooming Isle Royale wolves?

    • rork says:

      I have been telling people we will have to import wolves to the island forever or else a genetic bottleneck is certain, unless they migrate in on their own, which is not that likely. I’m OK with that. It won’t take that many that often.
      I would have preferred removing all wolves and moose and trying to restore what was originally there before Europeans: caribou and lynx. Lynx population was apparently big enough to avoid bottleneck, or they had new blood occasionally (that they might not be able to get now, due to lynx reduction on the mainland, and less ice).

  29. idaursine says:

    Also, there was an ice bridge just this past winter, that hasn’t occurred in quite some time – where one of the wolves brought to the island decided no, and returned back home to Michigan!

    So I don’t think it is predictable what will happen, or how climate change will affect things. There could be more frequent occurrences of ice bridges in the future. And of course, more travel between the mainland and the island. Horrors!

  30. idaursine says:

    I was curious; the last ice bridge was in 2014 (5 years ago), at least that I could find. Here’s an article about the one that formed during this past winter:

    “The wolf — fitted with a tracking collar and labeled F003 — took a crooked path on the ice to cross the 15 miles between the island and the mainland. She wound up just north of the Pigeon River near the Minnesota-Canada border, according to the National Park Service.”

    Smart girl!

  31. idaursine says:

    Here’s an article about the ice bridge from 2014. You may recall reading about the wolf Isabelle who was shot travelling to or from. That still remains the biggest threat, IMO.

    One of the comments mentions another ice bridge during this 5-6 years also:

  32. Immer Treue says:

    Feds Offer Reward For Information After Pets, Wildlife Poisoned in Northern Wisconsin

    A bit of a follow-up to an earlier post. Scrolling down to comments, does one of them look familiar?

    • Hiker says:

      You have to wonder if he is connected to this event on a personal level. Why else attempt to defend such a heinous crime?

    • idaursine says:

      It always reminds me of Toby Bridges, who I believe posted instructions for doing this boldly online, without any repercussions – and boasting about running over wildlife. Maybe he has a fan up in the UP. 🙁

  33. Immer Treue says:

    I’m reestablishing the above thread down here, as I don’t know where it begins and ends up there. You can disagree all you want, but variation is the key to natural selection, period. I’m not a fan of moose hunting, but it was evident that that particular moose had been around a while. Plus, and a big plus, if he was capable of breeding, he had already done so as he was shot in November, and moose rut is in Late September, early October. I experienced the racket produced by moose on my last IR trip, which coincided with moose rut.

    • Hiker says:

      All very good points Immer, I agree with you about variation. However, we have no way of knowing, short of DNA analysis, how much breeding ANY animal does. My main point remains the same-Nature has a way of doing things, it’s foolish to believe we can do better.

      • Immer Treue says:

        No argument with your main point, as all departments associated with fish and wildlife manage, or attempt to manage for surplus, and surplus take. Therein lay the philosophical differences between, in general terms, consumptive and non-consumptive folks. If you’re not managing for surplus, you’re classified as an anti hunter by the consumptive folks, and if you have to control populations because there are too many of them (forest destruction, collisions with cars, agricultural damage, starvation) the non-consumptive users are up in arms.

        As many have said on this site over the years, in particular with the fragmentation of wildlife in certain areas of the country, as things currently stand, man has little alternative but to manage. We can debate that point til we’re blue in the face, but the genies already out of the bottle.

        • Hiker says:

          Yes we must manage, but also adapt. With all the problems the WILD is facing it needs all our wisdom. We CAN manage for both consumption and non. But why do consumptive users need so many trophies? If it’s about eating hunt away!

          • Immer Treue says:

            As I believe I said in an earlier post, I’ve got friends who have headmounts of nice deer, some would say a trophy, but that’s not what it’s about, and I would say the majority of hunters (deer in particular) it’s about food.

            Again, if anyone frequents hunting sites and blogs, by nature of the beast, one will probably find a greater concentration of “trophy talk”. The group with whom I associate, there is absolutely no trophy talk. It’s about food.

            • Hiker says:

              Awesome to hear. My hunting friends do the same. Over a year ago now my brother-in-law got his 1st pronghorn in CO. He didn’t like the taste so I ended up with several pounds. Loved it!

              • idaursine says:

                IDK, he killed it first and then decided he didn’t want it? 🙁 Sounds pretty entitled to me. Reminds me of the time I went boating with friend and someone caught a large bluefish and I hope to God someone actually used it instead of wasting it.

                Personally, I do not ‘frequent’ hunting sites – the articles I read and refer are across the boards, although I have seen a few. Usually I don’t have the stomach for those sites.

                We have to realize that our little group of friends don’t always represent the entire group.

                • Hiker says:

                  In all fairness this was his first Pronghorn and he didn’t know how it tasted. It didn’t go to waste, he is one who hunts first for food. He ate as much as he could handle, then, when I was visiting, he gave me the rest. I don’t think he’ll hunt Pronghorn again.

                • idaursine says:

                  To me, why kill it if you know nothing about it. It isn’t fair to the animal who doesn’t know his disposable place in the human hierarchy.

                  If people choose to eat deer or elk and know they like it, that’s different.

                • Hiker says:

                  Have you never tried a new thing? Was that new thing without cost of any kind? I think you are being harsh and unfair on this one Ida. Once again, nothing was wasted. Hunting is part of American life. I know you don’t like it but I feel you must accept it. It exists, it’s not going away. We tell people on this forum to accept wolves and many clearly do not. It goes both ways.

        • idaursine says:

          And maybe rethink some of the ways we manage. Okay, so if the moose bred during the breeding season, why can’t he live till next breeding season?

          With climate change, and all of the uncertainty of our environments anyway – I don’t think we can be so definitive about wildlife populations. In the news recently, an entire population of penguins was wiped out due to an unforeseen environment issue.

          It is strictly to keep certain groups happy – and there are the non-consumptives (what a word) who get barely the leftover crumbs of consideration. Even when a population is in the worrisome category, I think that sometimes hunting is cancelled or cut back, but not without a huge outcry from the hunting community, regardless of the sound reasoning behind the management.

          • Hiker says:

            Hey Ida, I just non-consumed my local wilderness area this morning. Helped out some lost German tourists. I try to get out and non-consume everyday about 2 hours. LOTS of flowers here in the South-West!

  34. idaursine says:

    And I’ll give you two big examples –

    1. Wolverine

    All we hear about is climate change, climate change, climate change – and yet, when it came down to listing the Wolverine, of which there are barely 300 left in the lower 48, the reasoning by USF&W was “we don’t yet know enough about ‘climate change’s’ effects on the wolverine population to list them! So do nothing. And trapping of the wolverine is still allowed. Talk about hypocrisy.

    I guess concerns about ‘climate change’ are only limited to its effects on the human population.

    2. Sage grouse

    I remember reading that hunting of the sage grouse was going to be made limited or cancelled, and in response to the outcry by hunters, it may not have been.

  35. idaursine says:

    Does anyone know where the fate of the wolverine stands now, were they ever listed as threatened?:

    From a 2016 article in The Atlantic:

    “On Monday, Chief Judge Dana L. Christensen of the U.S. District Court for Montana handed down an 80-page—and at times harsh—judgment in favor of the conservationists. Christensen ordered Fish and Wildlife to reconsider its position, saying the agency had “unlawfully ignored the best available science by dismissing the threat to the wolverine” due to “immense political pressure.””

  36. Immer Treue says:

    By one vote, MN House Moves to Ban Wolf Hunting

  37. idaursine says:

    From the article:

    “Amy Klobuchar, also a Minneapolis Democrat and presidential candidate, has been a vocal supporter [of wolf hunting], often suggesting a “Governor’s Wolf Hunting Opener” when speaking to hunting groups.”

    Something to keep in mind about this candidate.

    • Hiker says:

      Only because they were forced to by lawsuit. They can continue killing while studying. This agency has always been obscene.

      • idaursine says:

        It does seem like something they can continue to hide behind. What needs to be studied?

      • idaursine says:

        They truly are obscene, aren’t they. And why hunting seasons and killing contests are needed in addition to this vile agency I don’t know. 🙁

  38. idaursine says:

    Surely they must have lots of data already. Remember this?:

  39. Mareks Vilkins says:

    Walz Backs Legislation Prohibiting Sport Hunting of Wolves

    On Wednesday, the governor said that when he was in Congress he supported “delisting” wolves where populations had recovered, but not nationwide.

    And while he said he supports managing wolf populations, he added he doesn’t think sport hunting is appropriate.

    Lt. Gov Peggy Flanagan, a member of the White Earth Band of Ojibwe, says the issue is personal for her because she’s from the Wolf clan, and there’s a rule against hunting your own clan.

  40. Mareks Vilkins says:

    With climate change, what will your city’s weather feel like in 60 years?

    if emissions are not cut and climate change continues as it is, by 2080, summers in New York will feel like those of Jonesboro, Arkansas: an average 9.1 degrees Fahrenheit warmer and 20.8% drier.

    • Mareks Vilkins says:

      By 2100, Deadly Heat May Threaten Majority of Humankind

      A new study has found that 30 percent of the world’s population is currently exposed to potentially deadly heat for 20 days per year or more—and like a growing forest fire, climate change is spreading this extreme heat.

      The 2003 European heatwave killed approximately 70,000 people—that’s more than 20 times the number of people who died in the September 11 attacks.”

      Dangerous heatwaves are far more common than anyone realized, killing people in more than 60 different parts of the world every year. Notable deadly heatwaves include the 2010 Moscow event that killed at least 10,000 people and the 1995 Chicago heatwave, where 700 people died of heat-related causes.

      Mora and an international group of researchers and students examined more than 30,000 relevant publications to find data on 1,949 case studies of cities or regions where human deaths were associated with high temperatures.

      • Nancy says:

        Fitting, 32 seconds in, how did they know, 10 years ago?

        • Yvette says:

          Holy crap! As many times as I’ve heard this song, this is the first time I heard that. Crazy.

    • idaursine says:

      The people who put this stuff out there with no regard of what it will do in the environment. Nuisance animals indeed. 🙁

  41. Nancy says:

    Private property, bordering a national forest. None of the dogs were injured. Did this young wolf stumble on his dogs and decide to follow them home? I’ve personally witnessed a pack of coyotes playing with a local rancher’s dogs, knew a guy who discovered his dogs playing tag with a wolf and we all remember Romeo.

    Was this wolf part of a mated pair and maybe protecting a family? (pups would of been born by now) and these dogs wandered into his territory?

    Was this rancher like so many other ranchers I know, dogs let out before sunrise and who cares where they go or what they get into? So many questions but just one sure fact, one dead wolf…and no dogs harmed.

    • Hiker says:

      And people wonder why some of us don’t want a wolf hunting season. It seems many of them are killed all the time.

      • WM says:

        And yet wolf populations continue to grow, gnawing away at the natural prey base, livestock and the story never ends. Some folks don’t like the elimination of “problem wolves” or population control by Wildlife Services, or other means. I can understand and marginally appreciate that.

        Got to remember, Hiker, the wolf re-introduction and re-population in the NRM, WA and OR, as well as the Great Lakes, has always had as a part of the formula a means to control numbers and range. That would include a hunting season in the mix, carried out by the states in which the wolves are. That is how some of the political opposition was overcome to some degree. (ps. I have never had a desire to hunt for and kill a wolf, though after some recent elk hunting seasons and wolf presence that resolve has been tested.)

        • Immer Treue says:

          If I may become part of this conversation. I submit wolves removed for livestock depredation and open season hunting and trapping of wolves are all but mutually exclusive. I’ll not invoke Wielgus, but open seasons are hit and miss for problem wolves, and the question does arise if pack integrity is important or not going into winter months.

          Population control: wolves numbers cannot be controlled such as deer, elk, etc, as there is no reliable vehicle for gender specific killing as per the above ungulates. Rather easy to determine bull/buck vs cow/doe based upon antlers, where there is no discernible mechanism to distinguish between male and female wolves. MN stats demonstrate a 50:50 gender split, with a higher incidence of younger wolves (there’s more younger wolves in general population). Case in point, all the I thought it was excuses.

          Boils down to money and not getting feelings hurt. A means of those who want wolves on the scene need to pony up, or need to be allowed to pony up (Montana debacle comes to mind). Minnesota has been dealing with depredation removal for a long time, and there isn’t a whole lot of argument against this process, but the mention of a hunting/trapping season does kick the hornets nest. Just Enough pressure has been brought to bear upon the MN House and governor coming out against Hunting and trapping seasons.

          Last, a question. I support a farmer/rancher being able to protect what belongs to them on their land. Lately I’ve been hearing the “well, the wolves have eaten up everything on public land, and now elk and deer have moved onto private land as it’s safer.” Do hunting statistics bear this out? Also, when ranch land was settled/purchased/inherited, weren’t these prime locations in regard to forage and water, thus attractive to all wildlife?

          • idaursine says:

            Good post Immer – but I’ll add that I think those who want wolves on the landscape would love to pony up and have tried, but are blocked. Remember the wolf stamp suggestion?

        • Nancy says:

          (ps. I have never had a desire to hunt for and kill a wolf, though after some recent elk hunting seasons and wolf presence that resolve has been tested.)

          Yeah, I can relate WM, especially when I’m out hiking on public lands and have to detour around large deposits of cow crap in the middle of a trail or run across streams and willows that have been beaten down, in many places, by cattle and yet their numbers continue to roam, wreaking havoc on pristine wilderness areas…knowing that thousands of miles of barb wire fences (separating grazing allotments) is responsible for untold damage to wildlife, especially ungulates, in these wilderness areas.

        • Hiker says:

          WM, you’re starting to repeat yourself, except you’re wrong: wolf numbers have dropped in Yellowstone N.P. (where there is NO hunting).

          Don’t you think it’s sad that as the Earth’s ecosystems groan from too much plastic and poison and the insects are dying off, that you have a hard time with wolves because you didn’t get your elk? I wonder if you had chances to get one but kept waiting for a bigger bull to come along. Is it really the wolves that are to blame? Even though hunter success rates are still high?

          You always make it sound as if wolves will just continue to eat everything, ignoring basic ecology. Predators naturally balance out over time. We’ve seen this play out in real time in Yellowstone. Maybe ranchers need to step up their protection of herds (people have been doing this since we had herds to protect) and NOT be so dependent on the government for help. And hunters need to adapt to the competition, as they have done since we became hunters!

          • WM says:

            Hiker, I’m pretty sure you know that the elk prey base in Yellowstone has declined some since the huge habitat changes following the fires of 1988. So, that would to some degree be linked to fewer wolves in YNP, along with the unlucky ones that step outside the Park and are taken legally by hunters and trappers.

            I am not a trophy hunter, so find your inference inappropriate. All four of our very experienced elk hunters came home with no elk to put in the freezer last year. We heard lots of wolves, though. I have been pretty clear that I am a meat hunter since I started posting here so many years ago. There are lots of folks like us in the hundreds of thousands of ungulate hunters across the US. And, to be candid, I enjoy the outing every bit as much as the hunt. Though it makes the effort and the cost harder to justify to my wife.

            As for livestock owners having to step up the protection, I don’t recall the NRM EIS mentioning those costs in any detail, and even when the environmental groups began advocating the protective measures they conveniently did not disclose the dollar costs in capital outlay and operation and maintenance costs for all the methods they employed or asked others to employ. I have been asking for detailed costs borne by operators for the last 10 years. They never give it out – just say the operators need to get range riders, dogs, put up fladry, use sounds and exercise good housekeeping. Never the cost. I find that disingenuous at the least.

            Immer, I agree with you that hunting will do little to deal with problem wolves. That of course leads to the obvious link to paid professionals, who may or may not be successful in solving a problem or creating yet another. As for hunting, it is simple math. Fewer wolves eat fewer ungulates (including young of the year elk,deer,pronghorn) in the places they are hunted and removed. ID, MT, WY and the GL states understand that.

            Yeah, the flatter lowlands, with riparian zones are great seasonally for wildlife and were before humans. But, of course, those areas are the most desirable for humans and their animals now, and we have had over a century of encouragement to settle those lands with national policy and subsidy to prove it. While you (we) can resent what we have done, those folks have a vested interest we are now asking them to give up. No empathy there from many of us for the new economics, I gather. Fee simple private ranch lands would often become less valuable if the permit grazing on public lands goes away. That, of course, is a hot button for many state governors and Congressional reps.

            • Hiker says:

              WM, as I said Yellowstone numbers have balanced out. A little history is in order here. In the early years of the NPS (1920’s) wolves were all killed in Yellowstone. Then elk numbers shot thru the roof. To take care of that the NPS, in the 40’s, 50’s, and 60’s, hired people to shoot elk IN THE PARK! People protested this and the shooting stopped. Elk numbers rose again. Wolves were reintroduced and elk numbers dropped. What level should elk numbers be at? The population that was artificially high in the 30’s thru 60’s and again in the 70’s and 80’s or the number that exists now? Since the purpose of the park is to protect natural things I suggest the numbers we see, for both wolves and elk, are appropriate. Also, the ’88 fires increased grazing for elk, it decreased browsing for moose, get your facts straight.

              As far as ranching goes that has been covered countless times here. We all know that Wildlife Services slaughters huge numbers of predators in the mistaken belief that this helps ranchers. Also, ranchers can get depredation permits and reimbursement. If that is not enough that, JUST LIKE ALL OTHER BUSINESSES, they must bear the additional costs. Last I checked this is still a Capitalist economy. How is it that ranchers get to graze on OUR land for pennies then complain about costs? Not to mention that wolf kills are a fraction of cattle deaths by other causes. I call bullshit.

              To me it seems that wolves have become a scapegoat and are blamed incorrectly. They are a symbol, for both sides. I favor protection. Protect wolves and their habitat, then many other creatures are protected as well!

              • WM says:

                Actually, Hiker, ag business, just like transportation is heavily subsidized in America. It is still capitalism but with lots of belts and suspenders for some farming operations. And, the big corporate operations have been drowning out small independents for at least the last two decades (Cargill, ADM and the like, as well as the other support businesses on either side of actually growing a crop). What you are stating is that livestock ranchers in Western states don’t deserve the subsidies the Midwest does, as well as some crop growers in areas of the West. But, I will bet you there will be no change on Taylor grazing unless CRP, TIP, crop insurance, direct subsidies for certain crops, and other federal programs all take a hit. That means your Cheerios will go up in price along with bread, Twinkies, Cheetos, Lays potato chips and Uncle Ben’s rice products (Not that I buy any of that junk, but just sayin’). Could be even milk and cheese, along with beer and grain alcohol cost more too.

                As to your guess on a pack affecting hunting success.
                Actually, three overlapping wolf territories in some past years, according to IDFG wolf reports for this part of Northern ID. I just keep reminding myself that each wolf will eat between 17-23 ungulates a year between October and April, with an additional few more in the spring months. And, its not always the sick or injured. Some of my wolf advocate friends still don’t get that part, yet try to rationalize it because it sounds good for their side of the argument. You may be right about scapegoat, becuase it signifies something much larger in the tension in the West, but one cannot deny the influences of wolves now that they are in greater number on the landscape. Everywhere they become established their numbers (and range to some degree) they will be managed lethally. That was all part of the agreed plan as the numbers grew for federal re-introduction and re-population. It will be done by the states eventually. Get used to it.

                Looks like WI is getting on board with US Senator Johnson in favor:

                • Hiker says:

                  Yes, I must get used to it. Still don’t like it, just like you don’t like not getting your elk. I feel the big picture is on my side. We need, in the face of extreme problems, to preserve as much of the WILD as we can. Let the prices go up, it’s worth it to save the WILD.

            • Hiker says:

              On a lighter side, I’m sorry you’re group failed to get an elk. I’m glad you’re not a trophy hunter. Where were you hunting when you heard lots of wolves? Since wolves are territorial you most likely heard one pack, so maybe 3-12 individuals.

      • Mareks Vilkins says:

        I have been asking for detailed costs borne by operators for the last 10 years. They never give it out … Never the cost. I find that disingenuous at the least.


        here we go again, LOL

        I will repost a comment by Bob McCoy (WA and OR have similar wolf vs. livestock realities):

        “National Agricultural Statistics Service shows Oregon cattle ranchers (NAICS 112111) having cattle-death losses of more than 70,000 cows & calves annually in the decade of the ’90s. For most of this decade, the death losses have been in the low 60,000s. Surely, wolves weren’t responsible for the 1990s’ losses? Today, with each of 155 wolves eating a head per week, that still leaves more than 50,000 carcasses annually due to other causes.

        However, the Capital Press (11/16/15) stated “From 2009 through June 2015, Oregon’s confirmed losses to wolves stood at 79 sheep, 37 cattle, two goats and two herd protection dogs.” Somehow, there’s a problem in the wolf-loss calculus. Perhaps the industry avoids preventative husbandry to better shout “Wolf!” to draw attention from the environmental toll of their industry. As Marcellus might say, “Something is rotten in the state of Oregon.”

        • WM says:

          Mareks, as usual, you miss the point. I was speaking of the capital costs, operation and maintenance costs of obtaining, training and keeping guard dogs, deploying fladry fences, range riders and any PREVENTIVE measures that have been recommended by advocates or agencies.

          And references to the WA wolf management plan and 50 to 100 wolves is fine, but one has to remember the impacts of 600-700 wolves or more in ID, MT, WY and eventually OR and WA as their populations grow will have GREATER IMPACTS on elk, deer and pronghorn populations which, according to some agency managers may require adjustment to hunter harvests for some game units, seasons and quotas.

          And, let’s do the simple math. More wolves in more places means more livestock losses, and greater costs (reimbursed or not by states). Some of this may be “acceptable” but the tension will still be there in all of this, and you are seeing it play out right now with the politics of delisting. Just as it has since the federal legislative rider that got wolves delisted in ID, MT, eastern WA and OR, and tiny part of northeastern UT.

          compensatory or additive is complex, and Mareks you will never understand the science, just as you do not understand the previous comments on your comments.

          October-April is the standard research period used by scientists to aid in calculating wolf nutritional requirements. Why this period? Has to do with the ability to identify kill sites IN THE SNOW, moron. Wolves kill young of the year in Spring, but the number is more speculative because scientists cannot locate kill/consumption sites. Young of the year, especially pronghorn and deer fawns are just carried off by often only one wolf doing the kill – then perhaps the prey is taken back to a den site.

          And, last, let’s remember the greater the range and the less the monitoring of wolf population the more there are. Wolf populations are typically under-counted by 10 percent, or more, according to Dr. David Mech, Chief wolf scientist for Department of Interior, and world acclaimed wolf scientist. and professor at U. of Minnesota.

          WA wolf population is under-estimated. And, net wolf population = P + births – deaths + net in-migration, has been somewhat flat because of legal and illegal removal of individual wolves,or natural mortality (that would be the deaths part of the equation). Let’s not forget WA wolves removed via hunting by Indian tribes = Colville, Spokane, and in the future the Yakamas will no doubt be killing some on their reservation where one of the largest elk herds in the state live, and where tribal members rely on elk for food.

          Mareks, you are going to have to do better with your rebuttals, because you are wrong on nearly every point you made.

          • Hiker says:

            WM, the true cost of livestock grazing on PUBLIC land in the West is really what we should be talking about. No more excuses for these welfare ranchers and the devastation they bring to the ecosystem. From overgrazing to the introduction of cheat grass which increases fire danger, the list of problems with livestock is way longer than your list of problems with wolves WHICH BELONG THERE!
            As a hunter I am surprised you offer such support to ranchers who steal grass from YOUR prey! How many more elk would there be in the West if cattle were NOT there?

            • WM says:

              I do not disagree with the ecological, aesthetic or even hunting benefits that might accrue by removing public grazing, or even buying back high mountain valley floors that would improve wildlife winter range. I am concerned with the economic impacts that would result in those states, and the politics it would take to make that happen at the federal level.

              • Hiker says:

                What are the economic impacts of massive overgrazing to the benefit of a few welfare ranchers? Rather than be concerned about what happens if we remove livestock from PUBLIC land, we should be concerned about what happens if we don’t.

                When I was growing up in L.A. there was still leaded gas and horrible air pollution. As folk began talking about unleaded gas all we heard from the industry was how much economic impact there would be in REMOVING LEAD from gas. Now unleaded is standard. We CAN change.
                We are looking at massive extinction all over the globe and no nothing about the problems here. Yes, it will take political will, and that is probably the biggest obstacle.

          • Mareks Vilkins says:

            your lack of reading comprehension is truly staggering WM

            1. for rabid gnat 70 000 cattle deaths are irrelevant – let’s cry about 8 cattle

            THOUSANDS of ranchers who lost livestock are scratching their collective arse and trying to figure out whom to blame for it (not themselves) and those FEW ranchers who got compensations (after they provided evidence that wolves are culprits) will not silence the murmur coming from the thousands

            2. “Over the course of a YEAR, an average wolf will kill — mostly with other pack members — and consume 16 to 22 elk a YEAR, Smith said.”


            you could undercount underpants in your drawer, bozo

            3. for years muppet WM tries to sell that D Mech is saying that 20% of wolves go undercounted (meaning ‘lone wolves’). Pure rubbish.

            Mech in Wolves: Behavior, Ecology and Conservation says that on average 10-15% go undercounted … but the funny part is that Minnesota and Idaho wolf surveys take that into account (MN – 15% and ID – 12.5%)

            read how the wolf survey is done in MN


            “After accounting for the assumed 15% lone wolves in the population, we estimate ….. ”

            in ID,MT etc wolf biologists would be interested to undercount wolves?
            get serious, bigot


            In 2006 we began using an estimation technique that has been peer reviewed by the University of Idaho and northern Rocky Mountain wolf managers. This technique relies on documented packs, mean or median pack size (mean or median of the sample pool of packs where pack counts are considered complete), number of wolves documented in small groups not considered packs, and an estimated percentage (12.5%; Mech and Boitani 2003, p. 170) of the population presumed to be lone wolves. The calculation uses a total count of wolves for those packs where we have a high degree of confidence that we observed all pack members, and applies the mean or median pack size to the remaining documented packs with incomplete counts.


            Montana wolf packs are monitored year round. FWP conducts ground tracking and flies 1-2 times per month to locate collared animals and determine localized use throughout the year and the number of wolves traveling together. Den sites and rendezvous sites are visited to determine if reproduction has taken place. Additional information is collected, such as identification of private lands used by wolves, identification of public land grazing allotments where conflicts could occur, and common travel patterns. At the end of the year, FWP compiles information gathered through field surveys, telemetry, and public reporting.

            • Mareks Vilkins says:

              In OR’s Science Review biologists assume 3 wolves would immigrate annually from surrounding populations

              maybe read WA annual report at last as it is obvious your obsession with Indian tribes is irrelevant (again your lack of basic maths)

              check out depredation stats in ID, MT, OR, MN, WI, MI

      • Mareks Vilkins says:

        I just keep reminding myself that each wolf will eat between 17-23 ungulates a year between October and April, with an additional few more in the spring months. And, its not always the sick or injured. Some of my wolf advocate friends still don’t get that part, yet try to rationalize it because it sounds good for their side of the argument.


        as I said, WM is struggling with basic arithmetic and cannot comprehend ungulate compensatory mortality

        Oct-April are not 12 months

        as WA wolf population more or less stay flat for the last three years (115 – 126 wolves)then let’s take a look at this forecast 7 years ago

        WA Wolf Conservation and Management Plan

        p 118

        E. Predicted Levels of Wolf Predation on Ungulates in Washington

        Total populations of 50 and 100 wolves are expected to have minor overall impacts on Washington’s ungulate populations. Fifty wolves may kill about 425-630 elk and 700-1,050 deer per year, with annual take doubling for 100 wolves (see Table 13 for an explanation of these estimates). These levels of predation could result in noticeable effects on elk and deer abundance in some localized areas occupied by wolf packs, but should not have broad-scale impacts. These levels of loss potentially represent 1-2% of the state’s elk population and less than 1% of the combined deer population.

        Populations of 50 to 100 wolves should have few negative effects on big game hunting in Washington, as demonstrated by the relatively small estimated take of ungulates described above (by comparison, Washington hunters kill about 7,900 elk and 38,600 deer annually). As noted elsewhere(Creel and Winnie 2005, Mao et al. 2005, Proffitt et al. 2009), wolves may also cause some redistribution of game, which could make these species somewhat less vulnerable to hunter harvest.

        However, these impacts together would be restricted to the relatively few areas occupied by packs during the early to middle stages of recovery and would probably not reduce statewide harvests of
        elk and deer by more than 1-3%.

        • Mareks Vilkins says:

          let’s continue with WA wolf conservation and management plan


          “Table 8. Total populations of 50 and 100 wolves are expected to depredate very small numbers of livestock. Fifty wolves may kill about 1-6 cattle and 7-16 sheep per year, with annual take perhaps doubling for 100 wolves. Larger wolf populations will likely kill greater numbers of livestock, with projections of 6-28 cattle and 20-60 sheep killed annually by 200 wolves, and 12-67 cattle and 22-92 sheep killed annually if 300 wolves became reestablished. However, sheep losses are expected to be on the low end of these estimates because sheep numbers are much smaller in Washington than in Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming (see NASS 2004). Even at a population of 300 wolves, these levels of depredations represent 4% or less of the annual predator-caused death losses experienced by Washington cattle and sheep producers. Depredations on horses, other livestock, and guarding/herding dogs are expected to be minor for each of the four wolf population size categories.”

          2018 ANNUAL REPORT

          In 2018, investigators confirmed that wolves were responsible for the death of 11 cattle and one sheep (Figure 8), and injuries to 19 cattle and two sheep (Table 2).
          Most mortalities occurred during the summer-fall grazing season from August through November (Figure 9).


          see Table 2 Confirmed wolf-caused livestock and dog injuries and mortalities in Washington, 2013-

          for the last three years there had been 8 – 9 – 12 mortalities attributed to wolves.

          bottom line: wolf depredation is way behind the forecasted schedule but you will never hear it from the rabid gnat. You will also not hear the salient point mentioned by Ed Bangs and Dave Mech – one should not be surprised that wolves will take down some cattle here and there but one should be surprised how rarely it does happen taking into account millions of cattle roaming unattended in the West.

          • Mareks Vilkins says:

            Fact Check: Have Wolves Depleted Elk Herds?

            February 2, 2019



            In August 2018 Idaho Department of Fish and Game issued a press release that forecasted hunting opportunities for the upcoming season. It revealed:

            “Idaho elk hunters are having some of the best hunting of all time, and there’s no reason the current streak can’t eventually compete with all-time highs…”

            Since 2014, elk harvests have been consistent with the record-breaking harvests that occurred before wolves were reintroduced in 1995.

            Most of Idaho’s elk herds and harvests have been at or near historic highs in recent years and well above long-term averages. Hunters should see similar numbers in the 2018 season.

            In 2017, elk hunters had an overall success rate of 24 percent and took 22,751 elk, IDFG stated. The 2017 elk harvest ranked second-highest in the last decade and sixth of all-time. It’s 30 percent above the 50-year average elk harvest.


            I studied a report from the Wyoming Game and Fish Department that provided a 2018 forecast for all eight elk-hunting regions in Wyoming. Six of the eight regions are at or above elk population objective levels set by WGFD. Two of the six present challenges for hunters. In both those regions, Jackson and Sheridan, the problem is that elk are more frequently migrating to or remaining on private land


            In August of 2018 Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks issued a press release that forecasted hunting opportunities statewide. Their release revealed:

            These are good times for elk hunters in Montana. Elk populations continue to be strong across most of the state. However, in many hunting districts access to private lands can be difficult. This can reduce hunting success since many elk are staying on private lands.

            MFWP analyzed elk hunting opportunities for all seven regions of the state. Elk hunting looks good in four of the seven. However, In the northwest corner of Montana, the last two winters have brought harsh conditions and deep snowfall that is hard on big game populations. (This is Region 1 where the groups that want wolf trappers reimbursed are scapegoating wolves for poor elk hunting. MFWP blames harsh winters.)

            • Mareks Vilkins says:

              Fact Check: Do Wolves Decimate Game That Hunters Want?

              October 29, 2018


              Wolves and hunters choose different prey. In 2016, the Project estimated that of the detected wolf kills in the park 36% were calves and 27% were adult males. Outside the park in Montana, of the elk hunters took 4% were calves and 45% were adult males.

              …. After considering all this data, it’s clear to me that while wolves take some of the game we humans chase, wolves don’t decimate and, in fact, have a much smaller impact than hunters do. I think this data also shows that humans and wolves compete for the same food, and that, I believe, is a big part of why so many humans are at war with wolves.

              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                then one should mention pack size and the amount of a wolf kill lost to scavengers

                Ravens – dominant scavenger

                Yellowstone NP – 135 ravens on an elk kill

                Yukon Study – ravens consumed 81 lbs of meat per day from a moose kill

                Although the daily food require-ment of a raven in winter is only about 415 g of meat/day (Heinrich 1994), mutual recruitment of juvenile ravens (Heinrich 1989, Heinrich et al. 1993, Marzluff et al. 1996) and food caching behaviour (Heinrich 1994, Heinrich 1999) make them powerful competitors of carnivores for large mammal carcasses

                Hayes et al. (2000) used raven
                scavenging data from Promberger (1992) to estimate that small packs lost 50% of consumable biomass from moose kills, medium packs 33% and large packs 10%

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  Dr. MacNulty states hunting wolves to reduce their numbers may backfire.

                  “It’s been shown in other hunted populations of wolves that hunting skews the population toward younger age classes,” he explains. And, as his research shows, that could spell more deaths, not fewer, for the elk.

                  The reason hunting pushes a population’s age structure downward is because being hunted is like playing Russian roulette. If, starting early in life, every member of a society had to play Russian roulette regularly, not too many would live to a ripe old age, he says.

                • Hiker says:

                  Wow, thanks Mareks! Of course the most rabid wolf haters will always find problems with these facts. As I stated earlier, the wolf has become a symbol for both sides.

                • WM says:

                  So, if you buy into the idea that wolf caused mortality is compensatory and not additive, there is little ADDITIONAL benefit to scavengers which utilize wolf kills as you mention above, since the animals are already dead or going to die anyway. Ever think of that logical aspect Mareks? As I have said before distinguishing additive from compensatory

                  Maybe you will understand from this lecture note to which I link (By the way I have a master of science degree from this tier one natural resource school):

                  And yet, Mareks, ID continues to undercount its wolves, perhaps substantially. Not just presumptive lone wolves for which they do make an adjustment. Two years running in that time-frame, 2006, I spoke with the ID wolf program coordinator, a guy named Steve Nadeau about wolf presence in one area we hunt elk. He said there were no wolves there. I sent pictures of scat and tracks. The next year they upped the number and added a couple more packs to the area, as their monitoring didn’t pick these up until later. Happens everywhere wolves are Mareks, they are always undercounted.

                  Doug Smith, I bet, would revise his 16-22 or as I have said other sources have cited 17-23, during the standard research period, which excludes May thru September because there is no snow to aid in identification of wolf kills from the air, and prey may to some degree shift to small animals like rabbits, mice, voles and the like. They still get young of the year ungulates – my friend in western WY said he saw as many as 6 wolves with pronghorn fawns in an area they use for birthing, while out hunting shed horns in May. I suspect the wolves of Yellowstone NP may not be represenatative of wolves elsewhere in the West outside a protected federal reserve where no hunting is allowed, roads are fewer, habitat modification from logging or cultivation/irrigation vegetation management is different.

                  So, I will continue to suggest there is substantial additive mortality due to wolves – how much is still being debated. Young of the year- not sick or injured- just being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Rut weakened (and otherwise healthy) mature bulls are disproportionately targeted in winter. Yellowstone research showed this to be the case in some work by Dan Stahler.

                • Hiker says:

                  WM, none of that matters! Wolves belong there! Welfare ranching must stop! Economic impacts can be absorbed! Hunter success rates (where there are wolves)speak for themselves! Elk numbers, SET BY STATE AGENCIES, are high! Preserve the WILD while we can! YOU must adapt!

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  there is little ADDITIONAL benefit to scavengers which utilize wolf kills … Ever think of that logical aspect?

                  oh really? and how a raven can open up dead elk in winter? try harder, one-dimensional logician

                  again and again you had been caught struggling with basic ecology & arithmetic

                  all you do is making some vague remarks about how you were providing input to the WA wolf plan (apparently one of 17 citizens from a 14 broad range of perspectives and values – probably chosen to represent hunter / rancher agenda as no one can recognize your input concerning wolf ecology) and what someone said informally

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  In YNP, patterns of predation by wolves show that they do not kill at random but select their prey for species, age, and sex while foraging. Wolves do not attack prey at random because the risk of injury and death is too high. Therefore, as selective foragers, wolves in YNP search for vulnerable prey and must be risk aversive

                  … Young elk are likely more vulnerable just because they are young, which makes them easier to catch and kill than adults …. when cows are killed, wolves select older individuals

                  … The changing trends in kill rates … the result of a combination of factors: availability and vulnerability of prey, interference competition between wolf packs, and winter severity and drought

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  Mech / Peterson has the same conclusion


                  we have come to view the wolf as a highly discerning hunter, a predator that can quickly judge the cost/benefit ratio of attacking its prey. A successful attack, and the wolf can feed for days. One miscalculation, however, and the animal could be badly injured or killed. Thus wolves generally kill prey that, while not always on their last legs, tend to be less fit than their conspecifics and thus closer to death.

                • WM says:

                  Seems coyotes, cougar, lynx or bobcat, and the occasional late hibernating bear or wolverine where present, can “open” an elk in winter, Mareks. Of course, where ungulates are hunted, the entrails and hide are already exposed for scavengers.

                  You continue to pump shineshine up the butts of the gullible, Mareks.

                  Of course, being there in Latvia, you have no idea how the WA wolf management plan was developed. Some of us here in WA know exactly how it came about. It was heavily weighted with staffers from Olympia (state capitol) who wrote the plan, with the obligatory advisory group which was weighted incredibly heavily to Western WA, the super liberal part of the state, and environmental interests. No tribal input was sought, much to the dismay of several native American groups, and the livestock folks and hunters of Eastern WA were under-represented, even though that is where the wolves would thrive most, and mostly still are today. It was stacked from the start. It was so bad there was a minority report written by a sub-group within the wolf advisory group. The EIS was a joke. And, the very astute and science heavy WA Wildlife Commission finally figured out what was going on, and when it adopted the plan asserted that flexibility was needed to adjust in the future, something the idiots in OR failed to do, and which has resulted in substantial NGO litigation over operation of the plan. Nonetheless there is still litigation over the WA plan though the courts seem to favor what they have done. I predict a wolf hunting season within 5 years, though they are already hunting wolves on two Indian reservations and have been for a couple years.

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  Seems coyotes, cougar, lynx or bobcat, and the occasional late hibernating bear or wolverine where present, can “open” an elk in winter

                  you are so lazy and predictable that it is boring, muppet

                  “Ravens were the most numerous scavengers among 12 species using hunter kills. Red foxes and gray jays were the only other species that regularly
                  scavenged, but their numbers were small and their consumption thus relatively unimportant”

                  There were 65 000 public comments and 43 reviewers etc – and most of WA residents would acknowledge that 8-12 cattle loss is laughable and native keystone predators are entitled to their share of wild ungulates – they risk their health and lives to get their food (broken ribs, fractured skulls and jaws etc etc).

                  “If the wolf is to survive, the wolf haters must be outnumbered. They must be outshouted, out financed, and out voted. Their narrow and biased attitude must be outweighed by an attitude based on an understanding of natural processes.” – David L Mech

                  Experts study wolf skeletons for clues into behavior

                  The Hard Life of a Yellowstone Wolf

    • Hiker says:

      Exactly why I wish to preserve as much WILD NATURE as possible, including wolves!

  42. idaursine says:

    I don’t think people are without empathy for ranchers, but they already have the deck stacked in their favor, so advocates for wildlife tip more to the side of wildlife, who have very little in their favor in the modern world.

    I also don’t think that hunters are especially entitled to ungulates; it’s not a very adult mindset to begrudge another living creature their right to food, especially since humans dominate the landscape. If you don’t get an elk – most people can find an alternative at the grocery store. Carnivores don’t have that luxury.

  43. Yvette says:

    Wolves be damned.
    Those on this blog already know it, but we all are facing a dire future. Wolves or no wolves. Elk or no elk. Over one million species at risk of extinction and you know we humans will suffer the loss of those services.

    The kakistocracy called America will never turn this around. But hey, I hear the economy is booming. Yee haw.

    • Hiker says:

      Your post is full of hopelessness. If your attitude stays the same they have won. Please, don’t give up, help save what’s left.

      • Yvette says:

        I never give up, Hiker. I get mad. I get annoyed. The utter carelessness of our society’s mores that drive the conversation and actions of the populace is leaving a trail of multi-century destruction.

        The planet will recover and reboot from anything we humans do. It’s only a matter of time; geological time. What pisses me off is that we humans will take down every other being on our path of annihilation.

        My favorite video:

      • Yvette says:

        Well, and then there is this. Thank goodness for Jane Goodall.

  44. timz says:

    some great footage but a propaganda piece for de-listing advocates

  45. WM says:

    Habituated wolves in First Nation village on Vancouver Island, BC not welcome:

    Go back two hundred years and tell me this wasn’t a problem back then when there were even more wolves in proximity to humans and only crude weapons to defend.

    • Nancy says:

      Not exactly talking about downtown Spokane here, WM. And its a no brainer, if you live in remote areas, keep your dogs inside or in the safety of a kennel at night.

      And it seems the problem is escalating due to the increase in tourism and visitors (with dogs off leash) in an area that has been home to wolves and other wildlife.

      • Immer Treue says:

        Nancy and WM,
        As of this morning, May 9 and the snow falls up here in the North… an interesting topic. Dogs, the philosophy of how to allow them to live, leashes, and wolves.

        Living rural with dogs is a challenge. Living in the woods with dogs, in particular young dogs, is a challenge. It’s certainly rewarding to live in an area where dogs can be dogs, yet one has to be able to reign them in and control their desire to run and chase. That prey drive is automatic. Ironic that in the letter of the law, at certain times of the year, one can shoot a dog up here for running deer, yet, if a dog chases a wolf and gets torn up or killed, folks want to get the torches out and kill the wolf.

        I’ve had wolves cross within twenty yards of me with an older dog off lead, then again, I’ve had young dogs off lead chase wolves, fortunately those wolves wanted little to do with the dogs or me. One of the online forums up here is packed with episodes of dogs wandering, found, etc. That concept leads to disaster, and it’s not the wolves fault. With two young dogs, I finally broke down and purchased a dual system of electric collars. I’m out with the dogs 3-4 times per day in the woods. I’ve remarked to a couple friends that there is always a dog walk between 9pm and 10pm, as well as the one between 6am and 7am (it doesn’t matter if it’s -40° or raining, and they’ve been incredulous; don’t you just let them out or put them on a gang line…?

        After time, one understands how their dog will react in almost any given situation, then something new comes along and all bets are off. You can’t intercede or help them if you’re not out there with them.

        I’d also like to call, at least partial BS to the idea that a wolf will lure a dog away from a house so the pack can kill it in the woods. I’d wager a large some that in most, if not all of these scenarios, the dog has chased the wolf…

        • WM says:

          Immer and Nancy, I agree with most of what you both say. The point is that wolves habituated to humans before, and are opportunistic predators. They will do it whenever an opportunity arises. The fears of our forefathers in Europe, Asia and even the New World were well founded. It wasn’t some contrived hate for wolves. There was a rational basis to it. Killed livestock, whether hoofed or fowl, the protector dog, and maybe even the occasional child or elderly person. Not bad, not good, it just is.

          And people tried to prevent or even deal with problem wolves to the point of taking further preventive measures up thru our the annihilation of wolves in the US. Don’t forget wolves have been nearly absent in many other countries as we have seen, even on this recent thread. Same mentality carried forward, and yes, too far with modern weaponry and poison in many places.

          Here is an interesting article by one the most well respected ungulate scientists in North America. Dr. Valarius Geist is to elk what Dr. Dave Mech is to wolves. He studies the prey, not the predator, and sees things from that viewpoint (refreshing actually). He speaks of wolf habituation problems on Vancouver island 25 years ago.

          • idaursine says:

            Please. A lot of the fears of our forefathers in Europe were not well-founded, but based on superstition, religious beliefs and mythology. Those beliefs were brought to North America (along with the almighty gun).

            In today’s world, there is no reason whatsoever to continue to push the fearmongering button that a wolf could hurt a child or an elderly person, steal a dog or a baby.

            If (and only if) a child or elderly person is not being properly supervised by their parent or caretaker in the wilderness, because wolves are not nearly as numerous as they were in this country hundreds of years ago.

          • Hiker says:

            WM, I have read that a lot of wolf fears from Old Europe might actually be related to dogs running free and attacking people and their livestock. We have seen that on this continent: Dogs kill way more human owned things (pets and livestock) and even humans than wolves. How many times, just recently, have you heard about a dog killing a child? Way more than wolves! I have heard of only a couple of attacks by wolves on humans and no deaths. Dogs are already habituated.
            Basically it boils down to this; wolves eat what we want to eat, livestock and ungulates. They are competition plain and simple.

          • Mareks Vilkins says:

            here some input from Immer about a book edited by that ‘wolf expert’ Geist:

            Poorly Written : Fact or Folklore

            To be honest, the book reads as if someone had newly discovered the copy and paste function on their computer, and lost track how many times the same thing was pasted.

            The publishing date makes the book appear as a rush job of half truths for the anti-wolf folks of the Northern Rocky Mountains, who seem to quote this book as Bible. It is not.

            Anti-wolf folks use the book as a focus for continued persecution of the wolf. Pro-wolf folks might be curious to read the book to find the source of some of the renewed virulence for wolves.

            • Mareks Vilkins says:

              “Throughout history man has externalized his bestial nature, finding a scapegoat upon which he could heap his sins and whose sacrificial death would be his atonement. He has put his sins of greed, lust, and deception on the wolf and put the wolf to death – in literature, in folklore, and in real life.
              The central conflict between man’s good and evil natures is revealed in
              his twin images of the wolf as ravening killer and (something we have not examined before) as nurturing mother. The former was the werewolf; the latter the mother to children who founded nations.” – Barry Lopez p.226-227 Of Wolves and Men / And a Wolf Shall Devour the Sun

              • idaursine says:


                Just a beautifully expressed excerpt. I had thought to put the legend of the founding of Rome in my other post, glad you did.

              • Mareks Vilkins says:

                rebuttal of one of V. Geist’s talking points for the faithful:

                The Little Worm and the Big Lies

                Reality Check: Western Wolves and Parasites

                In the western U.S., a controversy is brewing about parasites in wolves, and the possibility of human infection. International Wolf interviewed Dr. David Mech to shed some light on the issue.

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  some recent input on wolf debate in Colorado from Mike Phillips vs Valerius Geist etc

                  West Slope anti-wolf coalition forms
                  January 21, 2019

                  “The RFD-TV program tonight will feature a panel of four professionals who have researched, and are opposed to, wolf reintroduction. One of those is Valerius Geist, professor emeritus of Calgary University, who has documented cases of human death caused by wolves.

                  The program will present the story of an Idaho woman who contracted hydatid disease after wolves were reintroduced. Wolves are known carriers of E. granulosus, a tapeworm that can be transferred to other canines and even humans, with deadly results.”

            • Hiker says:

              From the book “The author establishes that wolves prey on healthy, well fed animals ” SO? If this is such a crime how do we rationalize human hunters doing the same thing? Once again I say wolves have become a scapegoat to some and all this anti-wolf stuff is because they are competition for things we like to eat. Remove ALL the welfare ranchers and wolf problems will be gone!

        • JEFF E. says:

          I have said this before as a considered opinion. wolves will exploit any available food source, when and if they understand it IS a food source.
          In the old world, a cursory examination of history will show centauries of nearly non-stop warfare with up to thousands of dead spread across the land scape or as little as a dozen or so. In the vast majority of those cases the dead and dying were left where they died, with maybe some local scavenging be nearby humans. After that the animal’s moved in and not always were all the dead, yet dead. Add to that instances of wide spread famine and plague where the dead and dying were also left where thy lie, or even in some cases hauled out into the country side and left. Then consider events like the soviet Gulag system. Does any one think that in the winter at 40-50-60 below zero the dead were taken out and buried by the ruskies?
          Would it be any surprise that an animal,
          any animal would not exploit that food source?

          • idaursine says:

            No, and really, whose fault was it.

            • JEFF E says:

              jeez, it’s not a matter of finding fault, it’s a matter of that was realty. No one, or not many, cared that the ravens were plucking the eyeballs out of the dead and dying, that was just the way it was. (next they went for the cheeks, and then the lips. bigger animals, bears, wolves lions, tigers, etc. went for other parts first.)

              • Hiker says:

                Jeff, the next step, I imagine, is that you would claim that wolves would then see humans as food. However, we have seen hundreds of thousands of dead on battlefields all over this continent (the civil war comes to mind), not to mention all the Natives killed by Euro diseases (how many corpses improperly buried?). Yet we see only two deaths by wolves in American history (and one of those is questionable). So I can only conclude that if your supposition is true then wolves have NOT made the leap from scavenging to hunting and killing.
                Once again, wolves can become a scapegoat, needlessly and harmfully. I think this is another example of people trying to demonize wolves when WE ARE THE DEMONS!! Humans have done way more harm to the environment and each other then all wildlife related incidents by far.

                • JEFF E says:

                  imagine away hiker, imagine away

                • Immer Treue says:

                  I’d put my money on Jeff’s logic. Humans most probably don’t fit wolves search/prey image, but when they’re hungry and humans have left their carnage all over: Napoleon’s retreat, the plague, the ravaging of the populace by the Mongol Hordes, if I’m a wolf and I’m hungry, I’ll eat what’s there and if I like it, I’ll look for more, whether it’s lying still or walking around.

                  It’s only a guess on my part, but the burial platforms of Native Americans; did that have anything to do with scavenging canines?

                  With all the blathering Mat-ters did when he was posting here, he brought up the Michigan farmer John Koski. The guy left dead livestock all over the place. There’s no wonder why the wolves scavenged and then took live cattle like walking into a butcher shop. They were conditioned/habituated to a food that they would not normally go after, just like humans in the above dialogue.

                  As an aside, I wonder how many folks have died in their homes with a dog inside the premises. If you’re dead, it certainly doesn’t matter to you, but the person who finds you after you’ve laid there for a week…first the dog tries to get you to wake up, then gets hungry… it happens.

                • Immer Treue says:

                  I’d put my money on Jeff’s logic. Humans most probably don’t fit wolves search/prey image, but when they’re hungry and humans have left their carnage all over: Napoleon’s retreat, the plague, the ravaging of the populace by the Mongol Hordes, if I’m a wolf and I’m hungry, I’ll eat what’s there and if I like it, I’ll look for more, whether it’s lying still or walking around.
                  It’s only a guess on my part, but the burial platforms of Native Americans; did that have anything to do with scavenging canines?
                  With all the blathering Someone did here in the past, when he was posting here, he brought up the Michigan farmer John Koski. The guy left dead livestock all over the place. There’s no wonder why the wolves scavenged and then took live cattle like walking into a butcher shop. They were conditioned/habituated to a food that they would not normally go after, just like humans in the above dialogue.
                  As an aside, I wonder how many folks have died in their homes with a dog inside the premises. If you’re dead, it certainly doesn’t matter to you, but the person who finds you after you’ve laid there for a week…first the dog tries to get you to wake up, then gets hungry… it happens.

                • JEFF E says:

                  5 min of research;
                  “In AD 1573, the aftermath of the battle of Bel-an-Chip was described – “Noisy were the ravens and carrion-crows, and other ravenous birds of the air, and the wolves of the forest, over the bodies of the nobles slain in the battle on that day.” [16] In AD 1581 William Odhar O Carroll was put “unsparingly to the sword, and detested (the thought of) shewing him quarter or mercy. They slew him, and left his body under the talons of ravens and the claws of wolves.” [17] In the aftermath of the Desmond rebellion, the body of a Dr. Saunders was found in Desmond in early AD 1583 who perished miserably, having fallen a victim to famine and the effects of exposure to the weather, and whose body was discovered partially devoured by wolves (pp. 72–73,[18]) In the aftermath of the wreck of the Spanish Armada in AD 1588, Francisco de Cuellar turned to check upon a companion only to find him dead. There he lay on the ground with more than six hundred other dead bodies which the sea cast up, and the crows and wolves devoured them, without there being any one to bury them. (p. 23,[19])”

              • JEFF E says:

                and yes, quite often domestic ,or near domestic dogs joined in…..

                • Hiker says:

                  Jeff, Did you not read my reply? I’m not denying wolves might have eaten dead people. My point, which you must have missed, is that wolf scavenging did NOT lead to wolves hunting and killing humans. So, because death by wolf is rare, anti-wolf propaganda is all about property protection.

                  I feel like we are all on the Titanic and while some of us have noticed there are not enough lifeboats some of us: Jeff, WM, and Matters, are upset that your deck chairs keep sliding while you listen to the band.

                  Honestly, wolves are a minor issue compared to poison, plastic, overgrazing, and deforestation. How many of us here have had a negative encounter with a wolf?

                • WM says:

                  Well, Hiker, I will tell you my friend in Afghanistan had a bad encounter with wolves.
                  They attacked and killed his rather large dog – in town at night when the dog was let out in a fenced yard to pee, while my friend waited for the dog. In this town (about 100 miles from Kabul) they don’t let small children out after dark, especially when they know wolves might be in the area. Some of you guys just don’t get it.

                  I also suspect that many attacks on dogs are never reported, and attacks or threats of attacks on humans are mostly not reported throughout the world, as well. Do you really have to have a mortality, Hiker, to believe the risks involved, however slight they may be.

                  I will also offer that my cousin, a seasoned backwoodsman in ID who works in a job that puts him in wolf country quite a bit, had a bad experience this year while bow hunting. He had just killed an elk and was packing a quarter of it out near dark. He was surrounded by a pack of wolves (he could see 5 but believed there were more), and had a few tense moments. Perhaps they were just curious, and they eventually left. He is a big guy, by the way 6’4″ and about 220. He was worried they would get the rest of his elk that he had not packed out, but apparently they left it alone. I think he left several articles of clothing and pee’d in the vicinity, as that sometimes works for both bears and wolves. Remaining elk was not bothered.

                  But wolves do constantly test a possible prey. Had they tangled with him a magnum hand gun may have been deployed. He had no desire to shoot one.

                • Hiker says:

                  WM, so YOU have not had a bad encounter with wolves, thanks for sharing. And no deaths by wolves? Even your ID friend packing out meat was NOT attacked and lost NONE of his meat. Why even post that story; not even close to a bad encounter, they left him alone.
                  Meanwhile the Titanic is sinking and your deck chair keeps slipping. How’s the music?

                • JEFF E says:

                  single year.[1] Pilib Ó Súilleabháin Béirre (c. AD 1590 – 1660), writing of Ireland and particularly Munster after the end of the Nine Years’ War, described the aftermath: THUS the war was finished. Ireland was almost entirely laid waste and destroyed, and terrible want and famine oppressed all, so that many were forced to eat dogs and whelps: many not having even these, died. And not only men but even beasts were hungry. The wolves, coming out of the woods and mountains, attacked and tore to pieces, men weak from want. The dogs rooted from the graves rotten carcases partly decomposed. And so there was nought but abundance of misery …

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  They attacked and killed his rather large dog – in town at night

                  who are ‘they’?


                  According to official figures, there are over stray 100,000 dogs in Kabul, and health workers say they have become a real menace to public health. Meanwhile, the government says it lacks the resources to roll out an effective programme of extermination or sterilisation.

                  Yousouf, the doctor responsible for administering rabies vaccines at Kabul’s central public clinic, said 190 women, 234 men and 426 children were treated for dog bites there during the first four months of this year. Last year, the total number of people treated at his clinic came to 3,700, most of them children. He added that many other bite victims had sought treatment at private hospitals, or else had not received medical attention at all.

                  … “We’ve had campaigns where we have eliminated around 3,000 dogs, but that wasn’t enough,” he said. “Sterilising dogs is hard to do in Afghanistan as there are so many of them.”

                  Mohammad Yunus Nawandesh, the head of Kabul municipality, said the poison previously used to kill dogs was banned six months ago, allowing numbers to rise. The only poison they had been able to access since then was poor quality.

                  “We’d administer the substance but when our staff went to collect the dead bodies, the dogs would leap back onto their feet and attack them,” he said.

                  Nawandesh said owners needed to take responsibility for their dogs, adding, “I have seen many people bitten by pet dogs at home.”

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  some background information about the wolf extermination in Ireland:


                  Through the analysis of pollen samples from bogs and examination of historical texts, it is generally accepted that the large-scale deforestation of Ireland’s landscape started around 1390, as land was cleared for agriculture and grazing.

                  Rapid expansion of the country’s population necessitated that forests be cleared to increase food production. Further areas of woodlands were cleared toward
                  the end of the 16th century, as the exploitation of Irish
                  woods by English settlers began.

                  By 1600, it is estimated that only 12 percent of the country was forested. Around this time, English forests were close to exhaustion, and Irish woods were seen as a cheap source of wood to fuel English industries. It followed that many English iron- and glass-working factories were established along the Irish coast, where raw materials could be imported, the abundant wood burned to provide heat, and
                  the finished product exported back to England. As wood in
                  England was more than seven times more expensive at the
                  time, this business plan made economic sense.

                  … A bonus to the English settlers of removing Irish forest cover was that it also reduced the hiding places for the Irish rebels who fought against English rule


                  a nice graph showing Ireland’s Forest Cover 1300 – 2050

                  area of Ireland: 84,421 km2 (32,595 sq mi)

              • idaursine says:

                Well, we killed each other ruthlessly, and if scavenging animals, birds, etc. and not just wolves, took advantage, we really can’t blame them. Looking at it from today’s viewpoint.

                It’s looking objectively at our own behaviors. Terrible poisons and bombs in wars, and it hasn’t stopped. So I feel justified in blame.

                • Hiker says:

                  Jeff, So, no one you know has ever been attacked by wolves? Had to go back to 1917 (I trust the news out of Russia back then!).
                  I have been charged by moose, elk, and black bear. I had a wolf stare at me through my living room window. Guess which situation was more threatening. If you want to cleanse this world of life-threatening animals, start with humans, then deer (they attack more people then anything else), bison, moose, bears, But NOT wolves.
                  Your car is more dangerous than a wolf.
                  Your deck chair is slipping, distracting you from the band that’s playing while we ALL go down.

                • JEFF E says:

                  I don’t know any one that has HIV, or Ebola, or that has been bitten by a rattle snake so there for I should conclude that it does not or has never happened?
                  What a moronic basis for an argument.
                  I have had all of the encounters you have described with animals also. What does that prove.
                  If you notice I have described what could and has happened in a relatively narrow set of conditions; what is the interaction between wolves and humans during periods of warfare, and as has been documented throughout history the incident of scavenging the dead and perdition in certain conditions has absolutely happened. period

                • Hiker says:

                  Again, I’m NOT saying wolves haven’t scavenged the dead. I’m saying we haven’t had more than 2 people attacked and killed by wolves on this continent. Period.

                  Oh, all the cases of wolf attacks from the old days in Europe might have been attacks by feral dogs. When was the last time you heard of a wolf pack 50 strong? In a war zone? All the prey species would flee from a modern war zone and so would the wolves. Meanwhile people would die, their dogs would be left to themselves and, since they have little fear of humans, might attack and kill people.

                  BTW, Ebola is not established here, you probably have met someone with HIV without realizing it, and rattlesnake attacks are very uncommon. My point is that most people who complain about wolves have not had a bad encounter with one, because having a bad encounter with a wolf IS EXTREMELY RARE. You are more likely to have a bad encounter with other wildlife, as you have, but YOU do not think about them as being bad. YOU have an anti-wolf bias.

                • Immer Treue says:

                  Unless you’ve used a different name in the past, or rarely posted in the past, you are completely wrong in your statement about Jeff having an anti-wolf bias. At least online, I’ve known Jeff since the old wild and Willy Newswest days, and have never observed anything from him that could be interpreted as anti-wolf.

                • Hiker says:

                  Immer, his latest stuff seems anti-wolf to me. Why post ancient, untrustworthy, stuff about wolves? I simply asked if anyone here has had a bad encounter with wolves and I get a bunch of nonsense and no real answers. The real answer is that, NO, no one here has had a bad encounter with a wolf. All they have is just a bunch of hearsay and crap. I have seen wolves in the wild, up close and personal, every time they run away. Even in places where they are protected from humans they are shy of us. The average American (Canada too) has more to fear from plastics (as you have said), poisons, etc.

                • Hiker says:

                  Immer, even for someone who spends a lot of time outdoors there are way more dangerous animals. Deer, elk, moose, bison have all attacked and killed people. If you hunt in Griz. country you take your life in your hands. Yet none of these creatures generates the same response that wolves do. Why is that? I believe that it’s because wolves COMPETE with us for food. It’s all about protecting property and that’s where wolves DO cause problems for people. Remove the property and you remove the problem.

                • Hiker says:

                  Sorry, I forgot Mtn. Lions.

          • Mareks Vilkins says:

            articles about wolf attacks on humans are cottage industry in Russia

            from Russian hunter portal:


            First case: So, on one regional Internet portal the case was described when the demobilized soldier, coming back from army, was attacked by gray predators, and his screams were heard by his mother with whom he spoke on the mobile phone and hadn’t switched it off.
            According to the stories by locals, from him there were only boots left, all the rest had been eaten.

            Second case: Not less heart-breaking case is repeatedly described in various mass media. On the route Kirov-Syktyvkar the pack of wolves has attacked a young family which waited for the bus. Parents have managed to lift the three-year-old daughter on a stop roof. Thanks to it, she managed to escape, however, right in front of her the wolves had torn to pieces both parents.

            Rumors about similar incidents in a good few of regions of the area were passed around, acquiring brighter details. Each of such facts had to be investigated and checked for reliability. As a result of checks any of the described cases wasn’t confirmed.

            So, the demobilized soldier really has been found dead, however examination has shown that he has died from overcooling, and simply speaking, has frozen after having been celebrating his demobilization, He had gone at night on foot to the native village. The regional state inspector and the chairman of society of hunters who has left on inspection of the scene have explained that the corpse isn’t touched by predators, wolf traces have not been found.

            In that area where both parents of the three-year-old girl had died by hearsay, the regional ranger has visited police, hospital, a morgue and road service. It has appeared, such case isn’t recorded anywhere, however all unanimously assured that it had occurred in the neighboring area. It was necessary to come out to the inspector to “scene” there and to interrogate all who could have information about this fact. Result — the same assurances that the tragedy had really happened, but not here, but in the area from where the inspector had just arrived.

            The first time I (the author of article) happened to hear the story about the girl and her parents was in 1996 when I was a student. Fortunately, even then it was only hearing …

          • Mareks Vilkins says:

            about Russia / Siberia:

            in Imperia Russia every year were published articles about wolf attacks on humans. However, many biologists and experienced hunters doubted that healthy wolves attack humans. So in “Notes of a Hunter in Eastern Siberia” (1867) author writes that he never heard about wolf attacks in that region of Siberia. Another guy wrote that in 1928 he asked local peasants in Lake Baikal area about wolf attacks – nope, nothing. In Caucasus the same story – only rabid wolves attack people.

            Then there’s Vilhjalmur Stefansson – an Icelandic American Arctic explorer and ethnologist.

            He asked about wolf attacks in the Soviet Union – and could not locate even a single documented case.

            • Hiker says:

              Thanks Mareks, some just can’t give up their anti-wolf bias. They are entitled to their opinion. We are entitled to argue against it. Especially here, on a site dedicated to wildlife.

              There are so many worse problems, this anti-wolf thing becomes a distraction from very real dangers.

            • Mareks Vilkins says:

              in the Soviet Union first documented wolf attacks happened in Kirov in 1944 – as Jeff E pointed out in a narrow set of conditions: war, famine, prey species non-existent or at very low density (because livestock stock had been destroyed and as a consequence game animals suffered brutal harvests) – however, Stalin ordered to be quiet about such incidents.

              Then there were also military involved in experiments producing especially agressive wolf-dog hybrids – some of them run away.

              • JEFF E. says:

                Thank you Mareks, you are correct I am referring to a very narrow set of circumstances and I will say why. I have been doing this for a very long time, over 40 years now. When I first started researching wolves, one had to get off their butt and go to a library, (remember those). There was no internet or even a concept.
                Over that very long time I can say I have acquired some knowledge and understanding of wolves, and even have some hands on experience. The argument about if wolves will or have preyed on humans has been going on for longer than I have been around and with the advent of the internet I have participated in a bunch of them. Over time I understood that those debates seemed always follow a pattern.That being has there been any attacks in modern times or anecdotal stories of attacks on “settlers” in the late 1700’s thru 1800’s.
                The other dynamic was it seemed that there was more “history” of wolf attacks in Europe than in North America, so I asked myself, as one should, why that was.
                I asked , from a wolfs point of view, what would be the driving factors, or the ideal set of circumstances, that adding humans to the menu would be an option?
                From there it was abundantly clear that the almost non-stop wide spread warfare, famines,plagues and frequent bad weather(little ice age anyone)across Europe would provide those circumstances, and viola, there are countless documented instances of wolf attacks, and scavenging, within those parameters, but I will let those interested, or not purposely obtuse to pursue their own research. I have already done mine, years ago.

                • Hiker says:

                  OK Jeff, but in all your research did you ever come across the idea that those wolf attacks in old Europe were really done by packs of feral dogs? I have and I find that easier to believe. Here in America we’ve had a long history with wolves with only two wolf attacks on humans that led to deaths. Meanwhile there are many reports every year of dogs attacking and killing people. Sometimes (often) not even feral dogs but somebodies pet:
                  My main point is that this fear of wolves is overblown, like most fears. Respect is a better attitude. I respect the Griz. enough to know when and where to NOT hike. I would never approach these animals or feed them. In my over 25 years with the National Park Service a bear got my pack once (from the back of my pickup). Wildlife need space, the WILD, leave them alone and they will leave us alone.

                • Mareks Vilkins says:

                  Jeff E,

                  I do remember reading your post where you described your library research and how you were raising a captive wolf.

                  Speaking of Russian / Soviet wolf stories one must remember that on average the wild ungulate species (moose, elk/red deer, roe deer etc) are at low densities there and therefore hunters have a great grudge towards wolves.

                  in Russia there are 2.15-3m hunters now

                  Qupota size (bag) & actual harvest statistics

                  Population estimates

                  Detailed game species statistics (with regional subdivisions)- species names on the left side

                  off course, the accuracy of those population estimates are debatable

                  Благородный олень – elk / red deer
                  Косули – roe deer
                  Кабан – wild boar
                  Лось – moose
                  Дикий северный олень – reindeer
                  Сайгак – saiga antelope

                  Соболь – sable
                  Рысь – Eurasian lynx (twice the size of Canadian lynx)
                  Бобры – beavers
                  Росомаха – wolverine
                  Волк – wolf
                  Бурый медведь – grizzly bear

      • Immer Treue says:

        In her book “Return of the Wolf Conflict and Coexistence” Paula Wild discusses some of the concerns unique to Pacific Rim National Park Reserve.

    • Hiker says:

      Breaking news! Domestic dogs attack people and livestock! Domestic cats kill millions of birds each year! Cattle die from weather related problems all the time! Pets are run over by cars all the time! Wolves have become a scapegoat for problems that people have created!

      Two hundred years ago? Why are you reliving the past? Please join us in the present and help us solve the REAL problems… too much poison and plastic… habitat destruction by overgrazing livestock… people poisoning and trapping animals to protect livestock grazing on OUR land.

    • Mareks Vilkins says:

      “Go back two hundred years and tell me this wasn’t a problem back then when there were even more Indians in proximity to humans and only crude weapons to defend.” – anonymous rabid gnat

  46. idaursine says:

    Speaking of guns, I could not believe my eyes when I saw this on the news. I really couldn’t believe that it was all from one residence. This is really abuse of the 2nd Amendment:

  47. idaursine says:

    “Geist is best known for providing intellectual cover to the most extreme wolf-haters.”

    This article is old (2014), but it gives some great information. Not really a good association for a forward of a book or quote:

    • Hiker says:

      Ida, very interesting and I don’t think that old of an article. The one WM sites above is from 6 years ago. So, Geist is quoted by WM, but apparently Geist has a severe anti-wolf bias. Go figure.
      Way more damage is done to the ecosystem by livestock grazing and trophy hunting. Predator hunting does severe harm as well.

      • WM says:

        Hiker, if you read the article, the observations of Geist began in the mid-1990’s. He’s not a flamer. He is (was) a highly respected elk biologist at the University of Calgary, in Canada- so he naturally would look at the predator-prey relationship from the prey side of it. I would not say he is biased, maybe just a good observationist, which is of course one hallmark of a good wildlife scientist. And he sure as hell had a lot of wolves to study in Canada for many years. Amazing how some of you guys can continue to rationalize how wolves are not opportunist hunters in nearly any environment they occupy. They are just like coyotes, except coyotes are better at it. By the way, nobody is saying dog packs don’t do the same thing. Geez.

        • Immer Treue says:

          In regard to Geist, Ida made a valid point, he has provided an “intellectual cover” for the virulence of the anti wolf folks. Two cases in point, the association he has had with Will Graves in his garbled book “Wolves in Russia”, and more recently the hit piece The Real Wolf by Ted B Lyon (not making up that name). Will Graves was also associated with that garbage.

          Analogically, it’s like Bob Guccione’s movie Caligula, that used people like Peter O’Toole And John Gielgud to provide validation for this poor excuse of a film.

          One wonders if Geist had a final say for his essay to be included in The Real Wolf. If so, it’s guilt by association with that hit piece. The book I mentioned yesterday, Paula Wild’s The Return Of the Wolf includes a large section/interview with Geist. Geist revisits his theories on wolves/habituation, but when synthesized with Wild’s nuanced approach, it leaves one with a different perspective about Geist’s take on wolves, than the hit pieces with which he has been associated in the past.

          • WM says:

            Immer, I think the more recent stuff with Will Graves (though it was several years ago that stupid book was written), had more to do with an old guy used to being in the spotlight finding relevance and still trying to stay in the game, so to speak – feeding the ego (not unlike Weilgus’ recent antics). We’ll all get there someday. Dr. Geist’s earlier body of work stands for itself, and in a good way, scientifically.

            • Hiker says:

              WM, so you admit that Geist is no longer relevant? Than why use his ‘older work’ (outdated) to justify your outdated anti-wolf stance?
              Look, wolves are here to stay. You have said I must get used to them being hunted and I agree with you (even though I don’t like it and it’s effectiveness is questionable). So I say to you that you must get used to wolves being around and stop posting crap that makes them out to be some kind of monster. The monster in this horror story is US! Look at all the damage we continue to inflict! Poison and plastic, overgrazing, deforestation, etc…. WE ARE WAY WORSE THAN WOLVES!!

          • idaursine says:

            Thank you Immer, but I wonder, what are the real thoughts of Dr. Geist then, does nuanced mean an edited, filtered version in this (yet) another book on getting along with wolves, or his actual statements and body of work? What are the author’s credentials?

            Will the real Dr. Geist please stand up?

            “The Return of the Wolf” sounds like something from hundreds of years ago – wolves have been ‘back’ for quite some time, and in some places like the Great Lakes, were never eradicated. There seems to be that same sense or irrational fear.

            In some place they are not allowed to come back, like UT and Colorado, or if the final delisting goes through.

            But if the book helps in the acceptance of wolves, the it is for a good purpose I suppose.

        • Hiker says:

          WM, to say that Geist is not biased just shows your bias. Everyone is biased.
          The data clearly show wolves are NOT the demons you and Geist make them out to be.
          More cattle die from disease or weather than from wolves. Hunter success rates continue to be high, even where wolves live. Wolf numbers drop when their prey numbers drop.

  48. Nancy says:

    Interesting, sounds like Mr. Geist has a bone to pick with wolves WM even though they aren’t the major area of concern when it comes to predators:

    “One place the problem has grown (conflict with predators) is the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve on the West Coast of Vancouver Island.

    “It is estimated that there are more than 120,000 Black Bears in British Columbia and over 7000 Black Bears on Vancouver Island making it one of the more dense places in the world for this bear population.

    And maybe the deer disappearing around Mr. Geist had more to do with something else?

    “Logging and residential sprawl disrupted the ecosystems that sustained Island deer. The blacktail herd collapsed from almost 300,000 deer before 1968 to about 55,000 today. In the same period, the human population grew by 50 per cent to about 750,000”

    • Hiker says:

      Nancy, habitat loss from human activity causes way more harm than wolves. Wouldn’t you agree WM? Or do you think wolves are as bad as Geist says?

      • WM says:

        HIker, I guess wolf problems were a figment of early settlers’ imagination – and mythological hysteria. The first official (provisional) government in Oregon was established just south of what is now Portland, OR in the Willamette Valley to deal with livestock depredation, largely by wolves. There was a series of “Wolf Meetings.” That’s right, wolves. Champoeg or French Prairie in 1843.

        • WM says:

          Hiker, this from the office of the Washington Secretary of State. I don’t think there is any spin here; just facts. My reference to going back 200 years is highly relevant, notwithstanding your unfounded criticisms:

        • Hiker says:

          WM, No one here said that! But we live in the present where it’s well known that it’s exceptionally rare for a wolf to kill a human. So, all the anti-wolf stuff is really about protecting PROPERTY, ie. cattle grazing on PUBLIC land. Stop the welfare ranchers and most wolf ‘problems’ disappear.

  49. Nancy says:

    A couple of wildlife stories that made the news recently:

    “Wildlife officials said they tried a fruit gleaning program in the past, but they did not get enough interest”

    “She said it’s not uncommon for people to be cleaning out freezers this time of the year, and that’s where the eagle likely found the halibut. Two days later, her suspicions were proven true when someone knocked at her door”

    Just tiny examples of mankind’s lack of empathy for other species. So much wildlife is killed or injured because our species is too busy or too ignorant to think beyond our own wants or needs.

  50. idaursine says:

    I could be wrong but to me, JEFFE was just noting where some of these myths about wolves may have originated. Humans have such a love/hate relationship with this poor animal, and paradoxically many times revered in names, who is just another creature on earth. 🙁

  51. rork says:

    I’ve been gone. Two observations about wolves.
    1) Near me they eat deer mostly. We know stuff about how many. We know very little about how many fewer deer are available to humans because of it. Ask yourself if you’ve ever seen a serious attempt at estimating it. I haven’t. For serious biologists in science papers they don’t do it because it is so hard to model. Amateurs say stuff about it all the time, because they don’t know how hard it is. Here’s an example where we can have students compete in a how-many-of-these-arguments-are-garbage contest: We know for sure that winters are hugely important, but this author won’t agree. He argues in paragraph 2 that we must maximum short-term sustainable populations of human-huntable ungulates, no matter what the cost to the land.
    2) Hunting and trapping wolves, even without knowing what kind of wolf you are killing, can reduce wolf populations. In Michigan we were able to extirpate them. Don’t argue that it doesn’t work. Argue that it is a) unnecessary, and b) dumb, counterproductive. You could argue c) unpopular, but argument from popularity is fallacy.

    • Hiker says:

      Rork, yes, we humans are very capable of destruction on a mass scale. The wolf is just one of many species to suffer at our hands.
      Yes, hard to gauge how many fewer deer there are because of wolves. So, ask yourself this, how successful are human hunters when wolves compete with them. If you glance at hunter success rates in WY. they remain high and elk numbers, in states with wolves, are often above state goals.

    • Nancy says:

      The article does go on about predators being the culprits for low deer populations Rork but fails to take into account this glaring fact about the Flathead area:

      I didn’t see one mule deer this past winter and there is usually a small group (15-20) that winters here. Can’t blame wolves since they get hammered if they show up by the local ranchers & WS. The mule deer that are migrating back in are down to a trickle compared to previous years.

      And as I’ve mentioned before, cattle numbers in this area have doubled on at least 3 of the ranches and sagebrush on these private lands, is being mowed down at an alarming rate to accommodate these increases. What effect is that having on mule deer and sage grouse populations.

      Toss in at least 25 new homes further up the valley (in the past 20 years or so) and its no wonder deer numbers aren’t what the use to be.

    • idaursine says:

      How can anyone reason with these mindsets. It seems so hopeless at times. Of course, deer populations are going to be affected by many things.