Thursday, December 27, 2012

Most Popular Blog Posts of the Year: Coyotes, wolves and bears, oh my

Posted By on Thu, Dec 27, 2012 at 11:05 AM

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All week we'll be counting down the end of 2012 by counting down the Indy's top five blog posts of the year. It's a pretty big deal, we know, and that's why we're stringing it out over five days.

Without any further ado, here's No. 3:

In his only interview on the subject, Jamie Olson told the Independent that critics had it all wrong when it came to the trapping photos he posted online. Matthew Frank wrote about the controversy first on the Indy blog Nov. 2 and, in addition to Olson's quotes, posted a number of graphic images that showed Olson's dogs with a trapped coyote. Frank wrote:

Olson, reached by phone yesterday, acknowledged he made a “big-ass mistake”—not in his coyote hunting practices, but in letting the photos, which he says are more than five years old, be publicly accessible on his Facebook account.

“The reality of it,” Olson said, “is that those were private pictures—personal pictures taken on personal time—and most of them were before I even worked for the agency I work for, and those were not intended for public access.” He said he intended only for his dad to view the photos, so his dad could see the dog Olson was training.

Now, as a result of the photos going viral, Olson said "shit's hitting the fan and I'm having to explain things." He has since deactivated his Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Olson, a federal Wildlife Services employee in Wyoming, is under investigation and no longer giving interviews. Two congressmen have also called for an audit of Wildlife Services.

Coyotes weren't the only animal that caught our online readers attention this year. Two other wildlife posts ranked just outside of our year's top five. Back in March we posted "How to eat a wolf," which linked to a Boise Weekly story about the culinary possibilities of the canine. And in January, Alex Sakariassen had the story (and photos) of a bear that decided to den beneath the den of a Georgetown Lake cabin.

Check in tomorrow for No. 2 in our countdown.

Past entries:
No. 4: Tester wins and an election judge breaks the law
No. 5: Montana's love of beer climbs the national ranks

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