The feds dumped wolves throughout the northwest, doing serious damage to ecosystems that weren't suitable. My rugged river valley in northern Idaho, the St. Joe River, has been drastically altered. I live at the back of a very small community, with an unobstructed view up our draw, and I used to count twenty to thirty elk in two herds up on the glades. They are gone, the most I've counted "post introduction" are 11. The grouse are gone, the wild turkeys are gone, my draw is suffering. Couger are becoming a "problem" all over the area - they are being out-competed and hunting dogs and cats. It doesn't help wolves to dump them into places they don't belong.
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your comment relies on several points i don't think you have given enough thought to. one is that you refer to "huge herds". except for certain times of year, elk should not be found in large groups, and historically only ranged in groups of around a dozen or so animals. the fact that there were herds of any substantial size here in recent times tells me that something was actually wrong. large collections of animals like elk spread diseases and create loss of habitat due to overgrazing and other damage. these factors affect wildlife, and especially reproduction, much more than predation.
you do not indicate a time frame for when you were a child, but if it has been in at least the last 50 years, the fact that you used to see elk and deer "everywhere", but not now, might have something to do with the population levels of PEOPLE....and that with all of the development and growth we have seen, there simply are fewer and fewer places for ANY wildlife to exist as it is supposed to. you don't suppose that might have anything to do with it, do you?
you refer to a "natural balance between animal and man"....exactly what balance is that? with hunters now utilizing ATVs, higher-powered firearms, and other aids in locating and "harvesting" game animals, i fail to see anything that resembles "natural". add to that the higher numbers of hunters out in the field during Big Game season, and simply hunting for one's winter meat seems to have turned into an activity for frustration, not self-sustenance.
you are right that we haven't seen wolves in a long time, in some parts of the State...neither have the elk, and when elk figure out how to deal with the wolf, in these areas...as they had dealt with the wolf before humans took control of "wildlife management", they will probably start coming back, and probably to the very same ranges they had always been in...IF those ranges still exist.
your romantic notion of deer in the yard and easy pickings every hunting season is probably NOT the way things are supposed to be, and if you have seen changes in wildlife numbers, it might have more to do with human influences than anything wolves, or any other predator, are doing.
actual figures gathered by the F&G indicate that while numbers of elk are down in certain areas, they are steady in other parts of the State. there are DOCUMENTED reasons for drops in numbers of game animals, including the very reasons i have mentioned. if all you see is packs of wolves gratuitously killing wildlife, you are not looking at the facts.
I can tell you who the intelligent one is here. It’s the wolf and that is without question. The wolf has decimated the deer and elk population in the Bitterroot Valley and that I can testify to.
When I was a child growing up in the area you always seen elk, deer and mule deer all over the place. I can recall huge herds of elk roaming wild and free with the satellite bulls working hard to cut out some cows for there own. Elk and deer were everywhere and hunting them was just a natural part of life back then.
Local people didn’t trophy hunt or go on wild killing sprees shooting up the entire valley for sport like the supporters of the wolf would like people to think, and they don’t do it even today. No the elk and deer were hunted for food and there was a natural balance between animal and man. It was a great time in my life where people helped out each other and no one ever went hungry or depended on the grocery store to survive.
Since the wolf has been reintroduced in the environment those very majestic herds of elk are no more. The deer that used to come into our yard are forever gone and the local people who hunt see nothing but the wolf tracks.
The supporters of the wolf will tell you this is not true but they lie for there cause. I’ve seen it with my very own eyes and my freezer is empty and the families I know that depended on these hunts work even harder to feed the grocery store.
Why is this happening you ask? It’s because some people thought it would be a great idea to bring the wolf back. They never stopped to think that they were about to reintroduce a species into an area that the wolf has not been in for almost 100 years. A cunning hunter that thinks and hunts in a pack was turned loose into a population of elk and deer that had no fear of the species nor knew how to adapt to such a hunter. No thought was given to the elk or deer or the people that depended on them and that’s evident by the lack of harvesting of the species.
Now to your question. The reason so many tags are sold and such a small amount of wolfs are killed is simple. The wolf is a cunning and intelligent predator that can adapt to it’s environment extremely fast. It’s a fast learner and it teaches what it has learned to its young and the rest of the pack. That includes the avoidance of man. This is why and for no other reason, so don’t believe all the lies the wolf supporters put out there.
Be warned and don’t take the wolf lightly or you could find yourself on the wrong end of the wolf if you venture to far off the beaten path while out in the woods. The good news is that man also adapts quite well and you will see the number rise as the elk and deer wither away to nothing and the wolf moves into populated areas.
What's going on at the Missoula Pd? They've got female Lt's buggering male detectives, sexual assault allegations between detectives, union presidents arrested for kiddie porn, female detectives being "stalked" by wannabe lookalikes, etc. etc. Who's watching the shop here? Maybe we should be glad Chief Muir is leaving. Sounds like he ran a real tight ship.
Looks to me a lover has been jilted. Just sayin
New anti-wolf, anti-fed film features "wolf cages" to protect kids
Posted by Laura Paskus on Thu, Nov 14, 2013 at 12:07 PM
Laura Paskus article needs a response to clarify many misleading statements to the public. First the School Bus Stop Shelter was not located on State Road 32, but on State Road 12.
Yes, the benches were broken and inside the shelter was trashed. The bench seats were broken into. Someone heaving a large rock deliberately broke the bench seats into, which was obvious criminal damage to property. The trash was “vehicle trash”, someone driving on a long trip. The vehicle trash was empty water bottles, some beer containers, energy drink containers, and oatmeal cookie wrappers. The shelter wire mesh was deformed from thrown rocks also. This is not the first time shelters have been attacked by people who oppose “Wolf Shelters”.
It is apparent that Laura Paskus article is biased and Pro-Wolf. She did not state in her article that the bus stop shelter was a victim of criminal damage to property but instead wrote words describing the shelters as a flimsy, trash-filled box, the cages smell of a publicity stunt.
The School Bus Stop Shelters are there to prevent a wolf-child interaction. All the pro-wolf organizations and supporters are screaming bloody murder and demeaning anyone and anything they think is a threat to their agenda. I guess they feel our children have no value and must accept wolves at the front door and in yards where children play.
The School Bus Stop Shelters have been in place for many years, past Superintendent Loren Cushman came up with the idea of the shelters to protect children at bus stops. Ag Teacher Ben Johnson and his students from donated materials constructed the shelters.
A wolf was near the swing set at the Glenwood Elementary School; USFWS John Oakleaf set foothold traps to catch the wolf. Sheriff deputies were present during recess.
A wolf followed two children home after they got off the school bus, wolf tracks were documented, and a wolf recovery interagency field team member did not want a statement from the mother.
Mr. Paquet stated in an official document;
Page 59 of 85 Mexican wolf review . . . Paquet et al. 2001
Wolf-human interactions have been reported consistently and regularly since the beginning of the program. Approximately 25% of the individuals in the free-ranging population have been involved with wolf-human interactions. As the wolf population grows, the Program should be prepared for steadily increasing frequencies of wolf-human interactions
This excerpt is from the USFWS;
Per SOP 5.0 (Initial Releases), the release site will be: (1) five or more miles from a town, (2) three or more miles from a dwelling occupied year around, (3) three or more miles from Recovery Area boundaries
Miss Paskus how would you or you readers feel about the USFWS dumping wolves five mile from your town, or three miles from your occupied residence with children?
This is living with wolves that no liberal, biased news outlet will ever write to inform the public of.
Miss Paskus you reference to a single mom of four, Heather Hardy. You say she have been upset about wolves for a while. For you information her being upset is justified. Miss Hardy has had seven wolf incidences investigated by Catron County and USDA/APHIS Wildlife Services. Prior to this, there were 6 more wolf interactions at the Hardy residence, where USFWS John Oakleaf was present and did state he found wolf tracks at her house.
The Hardy’s dog was attacked by wolves, farm animals killed and injured in front of her small children. The hardest for the children was when a wolf gutted their pet housecat in front of them and they had to put the cat down. Fladdry, electric wires with flags were installed by USFWS at the Hardy residence to keep the wolves from the yard where her children play, but this scheme did not work.
Foothold traps were also put on the Hardy property by Wildlife Service to try and catch the wolf.
To this day Miss Hardy’s two youngest children, son and daughter awake having nightmares in the night crying the wolves are going to get them.
Miss Paskus are you and all the pro-wolf organizations going to tell the Hardy children that they cannot have their school bus stop shelter, the only positive protective measure that gives these children peace of mind?
Miss Paskus, your comments that USFWS Maggie Dwire stated; no one has complained to USFWS about wolves threatening school children is not true, they have received complaints. Now, either you accidentally miss quoted Dwire or Dwire is shielding her wolves. Which is it? You also state 71 wolves were removed just for threatening livestock; I find this hilarious, when in fact removals are for many livestock depredations and habituated behavior involving people and homes. No wolf has ever been removed for “Threatening” Livestock.
The problem no one is talking about is the fact that many Mexican wolves are habituated towards humans and humans use areas. They seek out humans and human use areas and lack an avoidance response typical in wild wolves. The USFWS continue to supplementally feed wolves horse meat, which food conditions them to become habituated to people.
Many Mexican wolves are not out in the wilderness like purported in the news papers, they are around occupied residences and communities.
The Durango Pack was at one home twenty three times and seven times at another residence. How many times does a wolf have to come to a residence before you think it is a problem?
The USFWS are forcing the citizens of Catron County to accept wolves at their front porches and yards, and at close range to people because they cannot make these Mexican wolves wild with wild wolf characteristics. Habituated wolves are flawed and should not be considered for release upon the people of New Mexico and Arizona.
Catron County Wildlife Investigator
So you citizens are the educated and honored supporters of the wolf. Is this how it works? You know hunting the hunter and making idle threats to those who hunt and trap? I sincerely believe none of you have and ounce of bold or honor between the entire gaggles of worthless garbage that you are.
The reality is that you’re no better than the radical terrorist I’ve fought for 10 years, defending your right to be unintelligent. Eco terrorist, I believe it’s called. You use the same process of misleading information, idle threats, bullying and harassment.
I’m not saying this about the article written, because it was quite good, but rather to the people that responded to the article. How pathetic you are and how unrealistic you seem.
I love Bridger Bowl but their incomprehensible beacon required Ridge terrain contributes to this idea of gradations to backcountry skiing. You must have a working beacon, but not necessarily a shovel, or probe, or skiing partner. Intended or not the message is clearly received: some terrain requires less precautions.
... So when it comes time to skin to Saddle Peak, who cares that you left your shovel at home? And why bother digging a snow pit? La-da-dee-dee-da
Shut up Dolores
shut up Dolores
This is one of the best articles I have ever been on.
Great job fighting for our wolves.
I will totally help hunt the hunters.
HA HA HA HA!!!
If you can't hunt successfully with a bowie knife or spear...your not a real hunter.
Hunt the hunter, like they hunt animals... Ohhhh, that's wrong you say???
Thank you Marybeth for a phenomenal article. You have a heart of gold we are blessed to have you as an avid supporter of saving the wolves. I cannot thank you enough. What a wonderful article, the best that I have ever read. Thank you so much again have a great day.
Most effective ways to hunt a wolf: over bait from a blind (canada), at night with night vision optics (that's when they are most active), with electronic calls (the baying of treeing hounds should work nicely)...or as was done to remove the problem once before - with professional full-time wolf trapper/hunters paid a bounty & poison.
Great article. State wildlife commissions, which often contain no biologists, pander to politicians and the livestock and hunting industries rather than adhering to sound science. What's happening now to wolves in the Northern Rockies and Great Lakes is a travesty. The states have already proven in just a very short time that they are entirely incapable of "managing" wolves. Wolves need permanent federal protection.
Missing my dear friend Jim. Thanks Kevin Johnson for the work you do!
Sorry, hit post comment too soon.
Was going to say "handy with a firearm." I hope the intended purpose of this article was to highlight that fact as a GREAT BIG SCARY THING because it's certainly how the constant mention of CJ's shooting skills hit me.
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