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mexican gray wolf recovery

“Conservation organizations on Wednesday sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to force it to complete a long overdue, legally required recovery plan for the Mexican gray wolf, the lobo of Southwestern lore.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Arizona, aims to enforce compliance with rules the agency adopted 38 years ago to guide recovery of the federally endangered species driven to near extinction by wolf extermination campaigns of the 19th and 20th centuries.

It asks the court to declare the agency in violation of the Endangered Species Act, and order it to “prepare and implement a scientifically based, legally valid” final recovery plan within a year of the court’s judgment.

The Mexican gray wolf was reintroduced into a small area of eastern Arizona and western New Mexico in 1998 as part of a strategy to reach a population of 100 wolves, including 18 breeding pairs, by 2006.

Today, the population stands at 83 wolves, and five breeding pairs. They are managed under restrictions that do not permit the mobile, clannish hunters to colonize new territory, increasing the likelihood of inbreeding, according to the lawsuit. The restrictions also allow excessive killing and removal of wolves that take livestock, the lawsuit says.

By the agency’s own assessment in a recent draft environmental impact report, the existing population is “considered small, genetically impoverished, and significantly below estimates of viability appearing in the scientific literature.”

Sherry Barrett, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Mexican gray wolf recovery coordinator, was unavailable for comment.

Plaintiffs including the Defenders of Wildlife, the Center for Biological Diversity, the Endangered Wolf Center, the Wolf Conservation Center and David R. Parsons, a biologist who served as the agency’s Mexican gray wolf recovery coordinator from 1990 to 1999, accuse the agency of yielding to political pressure from ranchers, hunting groups and state officials in Utah, Arizona and Colorado.

In a letter to former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar in late 2011, for instance, Utah Gov. Gary R. Herbert urged that Colorado and Utah be excluded from what he described as “the Mexican gray wolf equation,” on grounds that those states were not “within its core historic range.”

The agency, in 2013, published documents based on recent genetic research showing that the species scientists know as Canis lupus baileyi ranged as far north as Utah and Nebraska.

“Unfortunately, when confronted with views from various interest groups — particularly livestock industry organizations, state wildlife agencies and the less enlightened hunting organizations – the agency takes a head-in-the-sand approach,” Parsons said in an interview. “What seems to be driving things in this case are the politics surrounding the Mexican gray wolf.”

Since 1982, the agency has convened three different scientific teams to prepare a formal recovery plan for the Mexican gray wolf.

The most recent effort produced a draft recovery plan in 2012 that recommended establishing two additional Mexican gray wolf populations, one in the Grand Canyon and another in the southern Rocky Mountains of New Mexico. The overall goal was to create three self-sustaining sub populations totaling 750 wolves.

The plan also suggested several areas of suitable habitat for reintroduction efforts including land in Arizona, New Mexico, southern Utah and southern Colorado.

That plan, however, was never published, and the recovery team that produced it never reconvened to review the proposal’s viability, according to the lawsuit.

“The agency has caved in to demands of the anti-wolf states,” Noah Greenwald, endangered species director at the Center for Biological Diversity, said. “Meanwhile, decades after it decided to reintroduce it into the wilds, the Mexican gray wolf remains on the precipice of extinction.”


Posted: Wednesday, November 12, 2014 1:15 pm

“Consider this loaded question: Should grizzly bears, wolves and cougars be hunted for sport? Worldwide, given their rarity and declining numbers, should lions, leopards, cheetahs, jaguars and tigers?

Across North America we find ourselves in another big game hunting season. For many the harvest is as much about putting meat in the freezer — a form of modern subsistence — as it is about the profoundly personal act of communing with nature.

From an early age, a lot of us were taught two guiding ethical principles: Don’t take the life of an animal unless you intend to eat it, and, if you do kill, there ought to be a good reason.

As states sanction hunts of iconic predators (grizzlies and black bears, wolves, mountain lions and coyotes), there remains a fact: People will eat little of those animals that they kill.

The search for a rationale in targeting predators must necessarily speak to reasoning beyond the simplistic argument advanced by fish and game departments that selling hunting tags generates revenue.

The issue of whether there’s an underlying moral — and compelling biological — justification for killing predators is taken up by two university professors in a new thought-provoking scientific analysis, “Wolf Hunting and the Ethics of Predator Control,” soon to be included in a new book, “The Oxford Handbook of Animal Studies.”

Author John Vucetich is a well-known Midwest wolf researcher and conservation biologist at Michigan Tech University; Michael P. Nelson is on the faculty at Oregon State University. In their paper they examine why large carnivores — which possess undeniable ecological value — are hunted.

Before we proceed let it be clear that Vucetich and Nelson did not write the paper to advance an anti-hunting agenda. They wanted to determine if any “good reason” for hunting predators exists.

“What counts as an adequate reason to kill a sentient creature?” they ask. “The hunting community has long recognized the value of this question to understanding the conditions under which various kinds of hunting is appropriate.”

Vucetich and Nelson consider the spectrum of societal attitudes toward predator hunting as expressed by trophy hunters, government wildlife managers, those who hunt for food, those who eat no meat and animal rights advocates.

They dissect the premise that predators must be controlled to ensure healthy populations of elk, deer, moose and pronghorn — and even, as is sometimes asserted, to protect people. They test the assertion that the best way of promoting conservation of a species is to place a value on its head and hunt it.

They also scrutinize the attitudes of so-called “wolf haters,” pointing out that unlike hunters of edible big game, whose pursuit seems to make humans more respectful of the animal, many who kill wolves are actually driven by a lack of empathy.

In a statement certain to spark debate, they charge: “Many instances of wolf poaching … are wrong because they are primarily motivated by a hatred of wolves. These instances of poaching qualify as wrongful deaths, if not hate crimes.

“To legalize such killing does not make them any less wrong. Moreover, people who threaten to poach wolves unless wolf killing is legalized are engaging in a kind of ecological blackmail … .”

Vucetich and Nelson also share thoughts about trapping: “A trophy is a kind of prize, memento or symbol of some kind of success. To kill a sentient creature for the purpose of using its body or part of it as a trophy is essentially killing it for fun or as a celebration of violence.

“And although there was once a time when trapping wolves for their pelts might have been a respectable means of making a living because wolf pelts were then a reasonable way to make warm clothing,” they state, “we no longer live in that time.”

Ultimately Vucetich and Nelson conclude that killing predators for sport isn’t justified biologically or on moral and ethical grounds.

They take government agencies and universities to task for not brokering honest discussions about such controversial issues as wolf management and predator control with citizens and students.

So often we do things in our society, they suggest, without bothering to provide the “good reason” for why.

Readers can judge for themselves. A copy of the analysis is attached to the online version of this story.”

**Special thanks to Todd Wilkinson, who has been writing his column here every week for 25 years. He is author of the critically acclaimed book “Last Stand: Ted Turner’s Quest to Save a Troubled Planet.”

Updated 4:23 pm, Thursday, November 13, 2014

“BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Four environmental groups filed a lawsuit late Thursday to prevent a federal agency from extending a wolf- and coyote-hunting derby onto additional public lands in east-central Idaho.

The lawsuit filed in federal court in Idaho came less than two hours after the U.S. Bureau of Land Management approved Idaho for Wildlife’s request for the derby permit near Salmon.

Defenders of Wildlife, the Center for Biological Diversity, Western Watersheds Project and Project Coyote say the BLM’s actions are contrary to the federal government’s wolf reintroduction efforts.

Amy Atwood of the Center for Biological Diversity called the decision “repugnant” and a “slap in the face” to thousands of people who commented against the derby.

She said the BLM “has the authority to make sure wolves are protected and secure on land that’s supposed to be a refuge for this fragile population.”

BLM officials in approving the permit said the impacts of an estimated 500 hunters on about 3 million acres of BLM land over a three-day period on Jan. 2 to 4 will not be significant.

“We are aware of the social controversy regarding the event,” Joe Kraayenbrink, the BLM’s district manager in Idaho Falls, said in a statement. “However, from our analysis, we could not find significant conflicts with other environmental resources that would prohibit the competitive event from occurring.”

The derby last winter was held on private land and U.S. Forest Service land but not BLM land because Idaho for Wildlife didn’t have a permit required by that agency for a competitive event. The BLM permit roughly doubles the hunting area.

“It’s wonderful,” said Steve Alder of Idaho for Wildlife. “That’s going to give us a lot more real estate to hunt on. We expect to get a lot more coyotes, and maybe a wolf or two.”

Hunters killed 21 coyotes but no wolves last year. Alder said the addition of the BLM land, which is usually at a lower elevation than Forest Service land, will likely hold more coyotes.

“We have the right and privilege to do this,” he said.

The BLM permit the group received Thursday is good for five years, and Alder said he plans to hold an annual coyote and wolf derby. He said his group is prepared for the court challenge.

In 2013, Idaho for Wildlife offered two separate, $1,000 prizes — one for the hunter who killed the biggest wolf, the other for the hunter who bagged the most coyotes. The event drew 230 people, about 100 of them hunters.

Alder said he expected up to 150 hunters this winter, and likely more who would take part in some way but not hunt.”

(http://www.sfgate.com/news/science/article/Feds-extend-land-available-for-Idaho-wolf-derby-5891334.php)


wolf noel

Photo courtesy of Steve Bloom

The OlympianSeptember 16, 2014

“The state Department of Fish and Wildlife has mismanaged another conflict between an Eastern Washington rancher and an important wolf pack. This time the department accidently killed the breeding alpha female of the Huckleberry pack, one of the state’s most stable and prolific packs. Gray wolves are an endangered species in Washington.

This is a catastrophic mistake that will likely lead to more conflict between the pack and livestock. The loss of a breeding adult in a pack is well-known to wildlife experts to cause chaos within the pack and unpredictable future behavior.

But the department’s mishandling didn’t end there. The agency knew the rancher had refused conflict avoidance resources from the DFW and Washington State University and proceeded to put 1,800 sheep in the wolf pack’s territory in difficult terrain without state-advised deterrents in place and protected by only a single herder and four dogs.

State wildlife officials surely knew this was a recipe for disaster.

When dead sheep started appearing on Department of Natural Resources-owned land, DFW should have been prepared to take quick and effective nonlethal deterrent action. It was not, and instead issued a secret kill order without notifying members of the Washington Wolf Advisory group in advance.

The DFW sharpshooter, working from a helicopter, was authorized to kill four of this year’s pups. But he mistakenly killed the pack’s alpha female.

Diane Gallegos, executive director of Wolfhaven International, located in Thurston County, said the conservation community is unanimous that the DFW and the rancher didn’t follow the state wolf plan and that the DFW shouldn’t have issued a kill order.

“This is an endangered species, and it is unconscionable that they accidently killed the breeding female of an endangered species,” Gallegos said. We agree.

In 2012, the DFW killed the entire Wedge Pack, even though it had failed to effectively implement the non-lethal measures required by the state’s wolf conservation management plan.

When ranchers engage in cooperative agreements with DFW, the state saves money, ranchers protect their livestock and wolves survive on other food sources.

Ranchers can also call on nonprofits, such as Conservation Northwest, to reduce conflicts between wolves and livestock. Conservation Northwest is using private funds and staff to train and provide range riders to oversee livestock sharing range with wolves. They are currently engaged in five separate projects, and in three seasons have not lost any livestock to wolves.

After the Huckleberry blunder, some of the most passionate gray wolf advocates are questioning whether DFW has a tendency to favor the interests of livestock operators. Clearly, the agency should be doing more to protect an endangered species.

Hundreds of thousands of gray wolves once roamed the West. When their natural food sources dwindled after human settlements, they sometimes turned to livestock earning the ire of pioneers. By the middle of the last century, most wolves had been killed off.

Today, thanks to protected status, wolves are making a comeback. They are a natural resource that belongs to the people of this state.

Gov. Jay Inslee should order a review of the department’s wolf plan management, and state lawmakers must legislate a requirement that ranchers engage in good-faith cooperative agreements with the state Department of Fish and Wildlife.”

 

**Special thanks to The Olympian for providing this information! (http://www.theolympian.com/2014/09/16/3319768_another-mistake-in-managing-wolf.html?sp=%2F99%2F109%2F&rh=1)


wolf in trees

Photo courtesy of “Howling for Justice.”

“Eastern Oregon Wolves Could Be Removed From State’s Endangered Species Act

OPB | Sept. 16, 2014 2:21 p.m. | Portland

Gray wolf populations are on the rise in Oregon, but that may not necessarily be good news for the animals.

The Statesman Journal reports  that the state may have enough potential wolf couples in 2015 for the minimum requirements to delist the animal.

“We were told in the beginning that when wolves first came to the county, we were waiting for that day,” said Todd Nash, wolf committee chairman for the Oregon Cattleman Association, in an interview with the newspaper.

According to Oregon’s Endangered Species Act, the state Department of Fish and Wildlife must verify four breeding pairs in eastern Oregon for three consecutive years.

In 2012, there were six pairs and last year the organization located four pairs. It’s predicted that 2014’s count won’t be complete until early next year, but early reports show more than four couples.

By removing wolves from the state’s endangered species list, ranchers would be permitted to use lethal force to defend their animals in more situations.

According to ODFW , shooting a wolf is considered a misdemeanor, which carries a maximum penalty of $6,250 fine and a year in jail.

http://www.opb.org/news/blog/newsblog/eastern-oregon-wolves-could-be-removed-from-states-endangered-species-act/

===

Anyone who’s read the Oregon wolf “management plan” could see this coming a mile away. There was major push-back against “the plan”  in 2010. The number of breeding pairs needed, to reach delisting, was ridiculously low.  Here’s part of what Oregon’s wolf plan states:

Oregon Wolf Conservation and Management Plan

Wolves may be considered for statewide delisting once the population reaches four breeding
pairs for three consecutive years in eastern Oregon.1

Four breeding pairs are considered the minimum conservation population objective, also described as Phase 1. The Plan calls for managing wolves in western Oregon as if the species remains listed until the western Oregon wolf population reaches four breeding pairs. This means, for example, that a landowner would be required to obtain a permit to address depredation problems using injurious harassment.

While the wolf remains listed as a state endangered species the following will be allowed: Wolves may be harassed (e.g. shouting, firing a shot in the air) to distract a wolf from a livestock operation or area of human activity.

Harassment that causes injury to a wolf (e.g., rubber bullets or bean bag projectiles) may be employed to prevent depredation, but only with a permit.

Wolves may be relocated to resolve an immediate localized problem from an area of human activity (e.g., wolf inadvertently caught in a trap) to suitable habitat. Relocation will be done by ODFW or Wildlife Services personnel but will not occur with wolves known or suspected to have depredated livestock or pets.

Livestock producers who witness a wolf ‘in the act’ of attacking livestock on public or private land must have a permit before taking any action that would cause harm to the wolf.

Once federally delisted, wolves involved in chronic depredation may be killed by ODFW or Wildlife Services personnel. However, non lethal methods will be emphasized and employed first in appropriate circumstances.

Once the wolf is delisted, more options are available to address wolf-livestock conflict. While
there are five to seven breeding pairs, livestock producers may kill a wolf involved in chronic
depredation with a permit. Five to seven breeding pairs is considered Phase 2.

Seven breeding pairs for three consecutive years in eastern or western Oregon is considered the management objective, or Phase 3. Under Phase 3 a limited controlled hunt could be allowed to decrease chronic depredation or reduce pressure on wild ungulate populations.

The Plan provides wildlife managers with adaptive management strategies to address wolf predation problems on wild ungulates if confirmed wolf predation leads to declines in localized herds.

In the unlikely event that a person is attacked by a wolf, the Plan describes the circumstances under which Oregon’s criminal code and federal ESA would allow harassing, harming or killing of wolves where necessary to avoid imminent, grave injury. Such an incident must be reported to law enforcement officials.

A strong information and education program is proposed to ensure anyone with an interest in wolves is able to learn more about the species and stay informed about wildlife management activities.

Several research projects are identified as necessary for future success of long-term wolf conservation and management. Monitoring and radio-collaring wolves are listed as critical components of the Plan both for conservation and communication with Oregonians.

An economic analysis provides updated estimates of costs and benefits associated with wolves in Oregon and wolf conservation and management.

Finally, the Plan requires annual reporting to the Commission on program implementation.

http://www.dfw.state.or.us/Wolves/docs/Oregon_Wolf_Conservation_and_Management_Plan_2010.pdf

===

This was posted in June 2010 on Howling for Justice, written by wolf advocate Katie, a Oregon resident, explaining why the plan was insufficient and should be changed.

Help Change Oregon’s Wolf Management Plan, PLEASE COMMENT BY JUNE 30th

June 21, 201o

 “Wolves may be considered for statewide delisting once the population reaches four breeding pairs for three consecutive years in eastern Oregon…. The plan calls for managing wolves in western Oregon as if the species remains listed until the western Oregon wolf population reaches four breeding pairs.”

This means when there are four packs in eastern Oregon and four in western Oregon, wolves will be stripped of ESA protection statewide.

The average gray wolf pack size is about 8 wolves. If packs in Oregon follow the norm, then roughly 64 wolves will be present when they are delisted. A recent study suggests Oregon could support up to 2200 wolves and still maintain a healthy ecosystem. I don’t know about you, but 64 wolves doesn’t sound like recovered to me.

READ MORE: http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com/2010/06/21/help-change-oregons-wolf-management-plan-please-comment-by-june-30/

===

So it’s come to this. Oregon, one of the friendliest of wolf states, may soon subject Eastern Oregon wolves to delisting because of the state’s weak management plan. This is the defining statement in their “plan”. “Seven breeding pairs for three consecutive years in eastern or western Oregon is considered the management objective, or Phase 3. Under Phase 3 a limited controlled hunt could be allowed to decrease chronic depredation or reduce pressure on wild ungulate populations.” 

Howling for Justice does not support managing wolves. Wolves are self-regulating and do not need to be “managed” Managing wolves is a catch phrase for the lead up to eventually hunting and killing them,  as you can see by the statement above, quoted from Oregon’s wolf management plan.  IMO, management includes continually harassing wolves through collaring, counting their numbers, treating them as though they are terrorists, needing to be watched every second. Wolf management plans are driven by agribusiness and unfortunately state fish and game agencies bow to that pressure. Ranchers lose thousands of livestock annually to non-predation, yet tiny wolf/livestock issues get headlines.

In 2010, Oregon ranchers lost 51, 200 calves and cows to non-predation. Yes, 51,200 and those numbers come from NASS ( National Agricultural Statistics Service). At the time, two members of the Imnaha pack, including the alpha male, father of OR7, were under a kill order for supposedly killing a few cattle. But ranchers lost thousands and thousands of cows that year to digestive problems, respiratory problems, metabolic problems, mastitis, lameness/injury, other diseases, weather related issues, calving problems, poisoning and theft. 51.200 to be exact. Can everyone see how ridiculous it is that ranchers complain wolves affect their bottom line when in fact it’s non-predation that takes a toll on their business. And remember ranchers are compensated for every confirmed wolf kill but aren’t reimbursed for non-predation deaths.  To put this all in perspective, concerning predation losses for all predators in the lower 48  in 2010, including coyotes, mountain lions, bobcats, dogs, vultures, wolves, bears. other predators and unknown predators, “coyotes and
dogs caused the majority of cattle and calf predator losses….”. NASS

 Wolf predation is a red herring and an excuse to kill wolves, period.  How could 14 wolf predations in 2010, blamed on the Imnaha Pack, have any effect on Oregon ranching’s bottom line, compared to the 51,200 cows and calves lost to non-predation? It would laughable if it wasn’t so deadly serious for wolves.

I know ranching is going to be pushing hard for delisting Eastern Washington wolves in the coming months, sadly because the Oregon Wolf Management Plan falls far short. It should be revisited and revised to allow Oregon wolves to continue to grow and prosper.”

**S

Eastern Oregon Wolves Could Be Removed From State’s Endangered Species Act

OPB | Sept. 16, 2014 2:21 p.m. | Portland

Gray wolf populations are on the rise in Oregon, but that may not necessarily be good news for the animals.

The Statesman Journal reports  that the state may have enough potential wolf couples in 2015 for the minimum requirements to delist the animal.

“We were told in the beginning that when wolves first came to the county, we were waiting for that day,” said Todd Nash, wolf committee chairman for the Oregon Cattleman Association, in an interview with the newspaper.

According to Oregon’s Endangered Species Act, the state Department of Fish and Wildlife must verify four breeding pairs in eastern Oregon for three consecutive years.

In 2012, there were six pairs and last year the organization located four pairs. It’s predicted that 2014’s count won’t be complete until early next year, but early reports show more than four couples.

By removing wolves from the state’s endangered species list, ranchers would be permitted to use lethal force to defend their animals in more situations.

According to ODFW , shooting a wolf is considered a misdemeanor, which carries a maximum penalty of $6,250 fine and a year in jail.

http://www.opb.org/news/blog/newsblog/eastern-oregon-wolves-could-be-removed-from-states-endangered-species-act/

===

Anyone who’s read the Oregon wolf “management plan” could see this coming a mile away. There was major push-back against “the plan”  in 2010. The number of breeding pairs needed, to reach delisting, was ridiculously low.  Here’s part of what Oregon’s wolf plan states:

Oregon Wolf Conservation and Management Plan

Wolves may be considered for statewide delisting once the population reaches four breeding
pairs for three consecutive years in eastern Oregon.1

Four breeding pairs are considered the minimum conservation population objective, also described as Phase 1. The Plan calls for managing wolves in western Oregon as if the species remains listed until the western Oregon wolf population reaches four breeding pairs. This means, for example, that a landowner would be required to obtain a permit to address depredation problems using injurious harassment.

While the wolf remains listed as a state endangered species the following will be allowed: Wolves may be harassed (e.g. shouting, firing a shot in the air) to distract a wolf from a livestock operation or area of human activity.

Harassment that causes injury to a wolf (e.g., rubber bullets or bean bag projectiles) may be employed to prevent depredation, but only with a permit.

Wolves may be relocated to resolve an immediate localized problem from an area of human activity (e.g., wolf inadvertently caught in a trap) to suitable habitat. Relocation will be done by ODFW or Wildlife Services personnel but will not occur with wolves known or suspected to have depredated livestock or pets.

Livestock producers who witness a wolf ‘in the act’ of attacking livestock on public or private land must have a permit before taking any action that would cause harm to the wolf.

Once federally delisted, wolves involved in chronic depredation may be killed by ODFW or Wildlife Services personnel. However, non lethal methods will be emphasized and employed first in appropriate circumstances.

Once the wolf is delisted, more options are available to address wolf-livestock conflict. While
there are five to seven breeding pairs, livestock producers may kill a wolf involved in chronic
depredation with a permit. Five to seven breeding pairs is considered Phase 2.

Seven breeding pairs for three consecutive years in eastern or western Oregon is considered the management objective, or Phase 3. Under Phase 3 a limited controlled hunt could be allowed to decrease chronic depredation or reduce pressure on wild ungulate populations.

The Plan provides wildlife managers with adaptive management strategies to address wolf predation problems on wild ungulates if confirmed wolf predation leads to declines in localized herds.

In the unlikely event that a person is attacked by a wolf, the Plan describes the circumstances under which Oregon’s criminal code and federal ESA would allow harassing, harming or killing of wolves where necessary to avoid imminent, grave injury. Such an incident must be reported to law enforcement officials.

A strong information and education program is proposed to ensure anyone with an interest in wolves is able to learn more about the species and stay informed about wildlife management activities.

Several research projects are identified as necessary for future success of long-term wolf conservation and management. Monitoring and radio-collaring wolves are listed as critical components of the Plan both for conservation and communication with Oregonians.

An economic analysis provides updated estimates of costs and benefits associated with wolves in Oregon and wolf conservation and management.

Finally, the Plan requires annual reporting to the Commission on program implementation.

http://www.dfw.state.or.us/Wolves/docs/Oregon_Wolf_Conservation_and_Management_Plan_2010.pdf

===

This was posted in June 2010 on Howling for Justice, written by wolf advocate Katie, a Oregon resident, explaining why the plan was insufficient and should be changed.

Help Change Oregon’s Wolf Management Plan, PLEASE COMMENT BY JUNE 30th

June 21, 201o

 “Wolves may be considered for statewide delisting once the population reaches four breeding pairs for three consecutive years in eastern Oregon…. The plan calls for managing wolves in western Oregon as if the species remains listed until the western Oregon wolf population reaches four breeding pairs.”

This means when there are four packs in eastern Oregon and four in western Oregon, wolves will be stripped of ESA protection statewide.

The average gray wolf pack size is about 8 wolves. If packs in Oregon follow the norm, then roughly 64 wolves will be present when they are delisted. A recent study suggests Oregon could support up to 2200 wolves and still maintain a healthy ecosystem. I don’t know about you, but 64 wolves doesn’t sound like recovered to me.

READ MORE: http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com/2010/06/21/help-change-oregons-wolf-management-plan-please-comment-by-june-30/

===

So it’s come to this. Oregon, one of the friendliest of wolf states, may soon subject Eastern Oregon wolves to delisting because of the state’s weak management plan. This is the defining statement in their “plan”. “Seven breeding pairs for three consecutive years in eastern or western Oregon is considered the management objective, or Phase 3. Under Phase 3 a limited controlled hunt could be allowed to decrease chronic depredation or reduce pressure on wild ungulate populations.” 

Howling for Justice does not support managing wolves. Wolves are self-regulating and do not need to be “managed” Managing wolves is a catch phrase for the lead up to eventually hunting and killing them,  as you can see by the statement above, quoted from Oregon’s wolf management plan.  IMO, management includes continually harassing wolves through collaring, counting their numbers, treating them as though they are terrorists, needing to be watched every second. Wolf management plans are driven by agribusiness and unfortunately state fish and game agencies bow to that pressure. Ranchers lose thousands of livestock annually to non-predation, yet tiny wolf/livestock issues get headlines.

In 2010, Oregon ranchers lost 51, 200 calves and cows to non-predation. Yes, 51,200 and those numbers come from NASS ( National Agricultural Statistics Service). At the time, two members of the Imnaha pack, including the alpha male, father of OR7, were under a kill order for supposedly killing a few cattle. But ranchers lost thousands and thousands of cows that year to digestive problems, respiratory problems, metabolic problems, mastitis, lameness/injury, other diseases, weather related issues, calving problems, poisoning and theft. 51.200 to be exact. Can everyone see how ridiculous it is that ranchers complain wolves affect their bottom line when in fact it’s non-predation that takes a toll on their business. And remember ranchers are compensated for every confirmed wolf kill but aren’t reimbursed for non-predation deaths.  To put this all in perspective, concerning predation losses for all predators in the lower 48  in 2010, including coyotes, mountain lions, bobcats, dogs, vultures, wolves, bears. other predators and unknown predators, “coyotes and
dogs caused the majority of cattle and calf predator losses….”. NASS

 Wolf predation is a red herring and an excuse to kill wolves, period.  How could 14 wolf predations in 2010, blamed on the Imnaha Pack, have any effect on Oregon ranching’s bottom line, compared to the 51,200 cows and calves lost to non-predation? It would laughable if it wasn’t so deadly serious for wolves.

I know ranching is going to be pushing hard for delisting Eastern Washington wolves in the coming months, sadly because the Oregon Wolf Management Plan falls far short. It should be revisited and revised to allow Oregon wolves to continue to grow and prosper.”

**Special thanks to Howling for Justice for providing this information! (http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com/2014/09/18/eastern-oregon-wolves-could-be-facing-delisting-in-2015/)

 


NEW wolf

Photo courtesy of DAWN VILLELLA, AP)

9:06 a.m. EDT August 27, 2014

“When the Legislature considers a proposal Wednesday that would maintain a wolf hunt in the Upper Peninsula, it will be the fourth time in two years that they have taken an issue away from being decided by a statewide vote of the people.

They have done it with issues ranging from insurance coverage for abortion to raising the minimum wage and appointing emergency financial managers for economically struggling cities.

They’ve also added appropriations to some bills, like the controversial right to work law, that make it immune from repeal by a referendum vote of the people.

The actions have raised the ire of groups that have had their ballot proposals thwarted by the Legislature and by ordinary citizens who have seen controversial issues pass without the checks and balances that a ballot proposal could provide.

“Even though my campaign went nowhere, I view it as a background resistance against the Legislature,” said Bill Lucas, a Ferndale resident, who started a constitutional amendment petition drive to allow referendums on all issues, including ones that contain appropriations.

Without the financial support from some organizations that he hoped would join his effort, Lucas was only able to gather a couple thousand signatures. But he intends to refile his proposal for the 2016 election.

And that’s the way it’s supposed to work, said Eric Doster, a elections law attorney based in Lansing.

“The legislators are the people’s representatives and they’ve been given that authority,” he said. “If you’re upset that the Legislature has done something, go through the constitutional process to change it.”

The Keep Michigan Wolves Protected group, which has submitted two petitions to repeal two different laws that allowed for a hunt of gray wolves in the Upper Peninsula, want the Legislature to let the voters decide the issue. The first petition was superseded by a slightly different law passed by the Legislature and the second petition could be thwarted by the vote the Legislature takes Wednesday on a petition that the pro-wolf hunt group — Citizens for Professional Wildlife Management — submitted to the Legislature.

That petition, which gathered nearly 300,000 valid signatures, already has passed the Senate and if it passes the House, it automatically becomes law.

The states across the nation have a mishmash of laws regarding citizen initiatives, referendums and constitutional amendments. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 24 states have initiative process and nine of those states, including Michigan, have provisions that the Legislature can act on initiatives turned in by citizens. The other states have those petitions go directly to the ballot.

But other states have provisions that the Legislature can’t act to amend or repeal a voter-approved initiative for a given number of years after it passes: in Nevada, it’s three years and in Alaska and Wyoming, it’s two years.

There are no bills introduced in the Michigan House or Senate that would address the referendum or initiative process. Michigan does have a law that would allow for amending or repealing a voter-approved initiative, but only with a three-fourths vote of the Legislature, a difficult goal to reach.

The Legislature got around that in 2012 by passing a slightly different version of the emergency manager law that voters repealed just a month earlier.

“The situation is Michigan really seems disrespectful of the people’s right to act as lawmakers,” said John Matsusaka, executive director of the Initiative and Referendum Institute at the University of Southern California.

Kathleen Gray is a reporter for the Detroit Free Press.”

 

**Special thanks to Kathleen Gray, Lansing State Journal, for providing this information!


wolf basement

Photo courtesy of the Harmony Fund

“The stars hang expectantly above the summer meadow on Gledic Mountain in Serbia, a place which is about to become the cradle of recovery for 25 wolves aching for freedom. The wolves are living in small household nooks, a basement and backyard pens which have been salvaged by their rescuer Dejan Gacic, a man who would lay down his life for any animal in need.

Dejan began as a dog rescuer. Working alongside his mother Svetlana, he saved nearly 300 dogs who had been in dire need on the streets of Serbia. The dogs were housed at a home-based sanctuary and at a second sanctuary on the grounds of his deceased grandfather’s home.
Daily care of the dogs was a team effort, but when Svetlana (right) died quite unexpectedly during routine surgery, Dejan was suddenly alone in caring for the dogs. At the same time, local residents who had heard of his heroic efforts for the dogs began to ask if he might help with a wolf who had been in captivity for quite some time and the “owner” was about to release her to a canned hunt.

Dejan thought to himself, “What would my mother do?” and then he did the only thing he could. He leapt in with both feet. He purchased the wolf from the man for a single bottle of liquor.

“They usually call and tell me to come and take the wolf or it will be killed,” Dejan explains of the many times he has been granted permission to rescue a ‘defective’ wolf who simply won’t bring in a premium price when released from his cage and sent running into the woods to be chased by hunters. “I just have no strength to watch them suffer and I have no power to stop it. I never met a hunter who feels sorry for the wolves or for any other animals.”

Over the last three years, more than two dozen wolves have made their way into Dejan’s custody. And though he didn’t have a solid plan on what to do with them, Dejan couldn’t stand to see the wolves come to a terrible end. More times than he can count, he has simply hung his head and walked through a group of amused spectators who can’t fathom why on earth this man has arrived to save some “dumb” wolf.

“I’m going early in the morning at 4am to see injured wolves,” Dejan told us recently. “I am going with my uncle and a vet will come with us. God knows what we will find there. I’m very worried. The last information I have from 2 hours ago is that both injured wolves are still alive and have a chance to survive.”

How We’ve Been Helping …

“Without you all these animals would be lost,” Dejan told us at the Harmony Fund last year after receiving his first round of emergency funding to feed both the dogs and the wolves. “To live a hundred lives would not be long enough to thank you. I wish that my mother was alive to see all this. My animals just had their first proper meals after a long, long time.”

Over the past year, the Harmony Fund has provided monthly supplies of food and veterinary care for all of the animals at Dejan’s sanctuary. We’ve also relocated all the dogs to a single location. After a series of inquiries and applications at the goverment level, we are now poised to begin getting the wolves out of their cages and into the mountain air.

Please Help Us Build Them A Sanctuary!

Though it will not be possible to completely release the wolves, they will have a “soft” release in which they will be grouped in packs and set free on large, fenced enclosures. In the reality we’ve been handed, we will do absolutely everything in our power to return them to a natural habitat and keep them safe from those who wish them harm.

Harmony Fund has taken this on as their latest challenge in a planetary mission to “Love the Underdog”. Because we are simultaneously addressing crisis situations for shelters in the Ukraine, the closure of a decrepit zoo in Indonesia and a multitude of anti-cruelty operations, we are deeply concerned about how soon we can get the wolves out. If the Harmony Fund is able to raise sufficient funds to begin construction in mid-August, the first paws should touch ground here by October, just in time for the wolves to be welcomed by crisp autumn air.

Some people think that charities enjoy asking for money, but the truth is, it’s always uncomfortable for us. No matter how many ways we try to find free supplies, equipment and services, there is always a cost for the work we do – and for that- we have only you.”

**Special thanks to “Harmony Fund” for providing this information!  

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