May 27, 2015

Repeating Outcome-Based Post-Normal Science Doesn’t Make it True

CoyotesIn the June 2015 edition of Whitetail Journal, there’s an article about the affects coyotes are having on deer populations nationwide. Essentially the article is not very helpful to anyone wishing to know facts about predators and prey, their relationships, and all the things that effect those relationships. The article boldly states that, “The data shows…that [coyotes] don’t have major impacts on [deer] population levels.” That might be somewhat akin to saying that deep snows in Alaska don’t have major impacts on building snowmen in Florida.

It is impossible to draw conclusions, such as this, from a potpourri of studies from different regions under completely different circumstances, by agents seeking an outcome. While it might be useful to gain a basic understanding of how some coyotes, wolves, bobcats, etc. might act and react in their specific habitat, such actions do not necessarily trend into other zones by different predators, because everything is different and changes in ways not uniform across the entire nation.

Missing from the article was any discussion about how continued protection of predators, resulting in larger populations of the deer-killing varmints, would continue to negatively impact deer herds. Perhaps the author is a bit of a believer in “natural balance.” On the one hand the article states that, “…the impact of winter coyote predation is greater when deer are low, below five deer per square mile.” That is a fact. Possibly deer numbers were below 5 per square mile because coyotes reduced them to that level and kept them there. This is sometimes referred to as a “predator pit” – the result of Predator Mediated Competition. A predator pit occurs when there are more than one prey specie that predators can eat, otherwise, the coyote/wolf will move to another area where it can find prey. This will allow the prey species (deer) to somewhat recover before the next round of killing begins.

You will also read in this article that when deer populations are running as high as 55 deer per square mile, predator effects on deer seem low enough that managers can control the deer herd by limiting or increasing deer hunting permits. Is that acceptable?

But, don’t we all know this by now? If your favorite place to hunt has been or is overrun with predators resulting in 5 deer per square mile, then this is a problem at every level. Just because down in the Southeast, where there’s 50 or more deer per square mile, coyotes don’t seem to matter, this does little in understanding and taking the right positive steps to cure the problem.

Don’t forget! I’ve mentioned this often and will keep repeating it because it is proving to be quite a prophetic statement by Dr. Valerius Geist, professor emeritus University of Calgary. He stated before the annual Southeast Deer Study Group in 1995, in reference to their complaints of too many deer, “Enjoy your problem while it lasts, because the coyote is coming. Once he’s here, you’ll miss your deer problems.”

The article states that predator control doesn’t work and one excuse given is because coyotes are transient – meaning that if they kill all their prey in one area, they will move to another area and eventually other, or the same, coyotes will return if prey begins to recover. This is nothing new. The author cites studies that prove in the first year after substantial numbers of coyotes were removed from one study area, deer numbers, in particular fawn recruitment, increased dramatically. Over the next two years the numbers didn’t grow so much. And this is what the conclusion that coyote control don’t work is based on? I would like to know what the author expected.

The author goes on to conclude that the only way coyote control – that is for the purpose of protecting and growing deer herds, can work is, “…keep at it all the time, month after month, year after year.”

Like the Geico commercial says, “Everybody knows that.” Don’t they? They should. Anybody that I have ever talked with, who has a good understanding of the need for predator control, knows that it must be an ongoing endeavor. Deer management must include predator control. Without it, the ONLY other option is loss of hunting opportunity and eventually loss of hunting altogether, when growing numbers of predators cause dwindling game populations to predator pit levels. Is that acceptable?

If not, then don’t settle for predator protection over hunting opportunity.

An additional note: Environmentalist are always trying to butter their bread on both side. They have, historically, repeated the mantra that hunters and trappers, using bounties, extirpated or nearly did so, wolves and coyotes. In the next breath, they will tell us that hunting, trapping and using bounties not only won’t have any effect on reducing coyote numbers but will cause the numbers to go up. Amazing brain power there at work.

FacebookTwitterGoogle+PinterestLinkedInEmailShare

Environmentalism Has No Faults

EnvironmentalismIf you could swallow back hard against the urge to regurgitate whatever is in your stomach at the time by reading an article in the Christian Science Monitor, you would discover that Environmentalism is the creator of the Nirvanic Land of Oz, while hunters are nothing but stupid killers.

Romantic notions of environmental insanity and Gaia worship, placed on a plane that exceeds even that of the Creator, beckons for uncontrolled outbursts of Kumbaya and maybe even a few lines from I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing.

As should be expected from the camp of the environmentalists, they think the republicans in the Congress hate wildlife and are out to destroy the Endangered Species Act, while, in their robotic minds, Obama is removing more animals from the Endangered Species Act list than any human ever thought possible. Now we can better understand why wolves walk on water, change rivers and leap tall buildings in a single bound.

The Land of Oz has been saved….well, almost. Laws, more laws and even more laws, stripping of property rights and loss of jobs, homes, ranches, businesses, have all proven to be the savior of Toto’s happy playground…despite hunters. We did nothing. We do nothing. We kill and that’s all there is to it. We should just be lined up and shot. They shoot horses don’t they?

My favorite IDIOT line from this article says, “There are a lot of people out there, including deer hunters prowling…, who could’ve all taken a shot at one of these black bears, and they didn’t.” My God! It’s a miracle. Had it not been for environmental influences, those “prowling” hunters would have killed everything in sight – probably people too. How are we kept under control? Amazing.

Missing from the entire conversation in this article is discussion about the overall public perception of environmental mentalism, and that environmentalism is what is to blame for actions by Congress to get some semblance of sanity (if that’s at all possible from any government agency) back into Endangered Species Act administering. Environmentalism wants their cake and eat it too. They are cluelessly causing humans to suffer so they can continue their perverted animal worship, programmed into them from birth. It’s sick behavior, but they don’t know it. This behavior has gone on for so long now, unchecked and fully pushed by the Courts, that their greed has caused people like myself, to become so sick and tired of it all, that we are speaking up and demanding something be done to stop the runaway train.

Without the cooperation of the activist Courts, Congress is being forced to write laws exempting species from any control by the Endangered Species Act and the Courts. And yet, these non thinking, mental midgets, not only cannot see what they have done, they still blame hunters for killing everything. They fear Congressional actions will put wildlife management back 10, 20, 30 or more years, but fail miserably to grasp the results of a forced Congress exempting animals from the control of Environmentalism and the Courts, possibly causing the prohibition of helping that species in the future if trouble surfaces again.

Long before Totalitarian rule via Environmentalism, hunters became the conservationist. It was our work and our money that conserved and preserved wildlife. Environmentalism has changed the narrative of how wildlife management is discussed and now they are taking credit for what today they call their Land of Oz, DESPITE the continued allowance of hunting.

Michigan Considers Closing 2015 Deer Season

If we kill fewer deer, will that not place more stress on limited food sources and yarding areas and lead to even more winter kill? In fact, that’s likely to happen.

Prior to settlement, the habitat supported few whitetails. Then that habitat changed, and deer numbers boomed.

Winter conditions have been fairly consistent since the beginning. Wolf numbers aside, there has been but one factor that’s determined whitetail boom or bust in the U.P.: habitat.

Source: Michigan Considers Closing 2015 Deer Season | Realtree

Roaming Elk at Point Reyes Bedevil Ranchers in California 

Tule elk in a refuge have been dying off while a thriving herd outside it has encroached on pastures, rekindling a dispute over the management of the creatures.
Source: Roaming Elk at Point Reyes Bedevil Ranchers in California – NYTimes.com

Coyotes on the Run? Let’s Get Bears on the Run Too

LonelyCoyoteI have never met V. Paul Reynolds, but I think I should. I was never blessed with the ability to see a half-filled glass of water as half full – it’s always half-empty. Perhaps his positive and optimistic attitude would rub off on me.

Reynold’s latest article in the Sun Journal extols the successes of Maine’s coyote “suppression program” saying this effort has “coyotes on the run.”

According to Reynolds this year’s effort to limit the damage to deer in deer wintering areas has realized a harvest of around 500 coyotes – combined total from hired state coyote hunters and trappers, and private citizens by hunting, trapping and coyote derbies. Ryan Robicheau, Maine’s Wildlife Management Section Supervisor, says the budgeted amount of money for this programs, and using 500 coyotes as the number of coyotes killed, works out to $175.00 a coyote. However, if my calculations are correct, and I’m understanding the information provided, aside from the state’s effort and coyote yield of 270 varmints, all the rest of the kills were paid for out of individuals’ or groups’ pockets. Therefore, the cost per coyote harvested by state officials runs well over $200.00 – a figure most of us have come to recognize, wishing that money could be allotted to citizen trappers and hunters. Alas!

Actually, I was a bit surprised that there was still an ongoing coyote control program. It’s been so quiet (Okay let’s blame this on no PR position at MDIFW) I just assumed, like many programs the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) undertakes, just abruptly ended.

The article in reference states that the money appropriated is used to pay “professional” hunters and trappers to kill coyotes in and around “52 major deer wintering areas.” This is good and, in my opinion, with the limited supply of money, efforts should be targeted in critical areas where coyotes do the most harm. I would like to also see targeting of coyotes in known deer fawning areas. Like deer yards, coyotes know where the does go to birth, as do bears.

Maybe this is all a difference of perspective from being very optimistic and being realistic. I intend to not take away from the effort or the results. Some is good. More is even better. Here’s the take away…or is it a giveaway?

Robicheau says that this math[cost per coyote], coupled with anecdotal reports from winter trappers, strongly suggests that this coyote suppression program is working.

“Our people are seeing fewer coyotes this year in our designated deer wintering areas,”

The only way this program can continue to be successful is that this “suppression program” must be continuous, because the following year other coyotes move to the deer yards and more deer killing will commence.

What readers should not be confused about is that it might be a bit unclear about the success of this program and a program that would be designed to control the coyote population state wide. Robicheau says that anecdotal reports show a reduction in coyotes. It appears he is clarifying that when he says in the next sentence, “in our designated deer wintering areas.”

Because without exact clarification, math and previous statements made by such deer professionals as Gerry Lavigne, could get confusing. We don’t need confusion and we don’t need suppression of information. For instance, Lavigne has stated before that in order to begin reducing coyote populations, an annual coyote harvest needs to be about 70% of the existing animals. Once coyote numbers are reduced to the desired levels, that 70% harvest would need to be adjusted smaller in order to maintain a desired number. The program has to be continuous and well-monitored. Will that ever happen? NOPE!

Math can get fuzzy if we attempt to use Lavigne’s logarithm and apply it to the 500 coyotes killed and claims that there are now fewer coyotes than before. On it’s face, if we took those numbers, then if killing 500 coyotes reduced the overall number of coyotes to a point where fewer coyotes are being seen, then one would have to ask just how many coyotes does Maine have?

I have read, and I don’t believe there is an “official” population number, that coyotes in Maine number between 15,000 and 20,000. Clearly we see that a 500-coyote harvest is NOT a 70% reduction. A 70% reduction would be somewhere around 11,000 coyotes.

My point is not to confuse Lavigne’s general statement about state-wide coyote population control and that done in targeted deer wintering areas. As far as helping to protect the deer herd in winter deer yards, the program is good and appears to be helping. Personally, I would like to see a more substantial effort, because too many coyotes can have real negative effects on many other wildlife species, not just deer. But, I’ll take what we can get that works at any level.

And, if officials can figure out a way to protect deer fawning areas, perhaps a joint effort can be undertaken to limit fawn kills of deer, by both coyotes and bear. Bears are sleeping during winter months, but when they wake up they are hungry. When the does fawn, like the coyotes, the bear knows where the does fawn.

CoyoteFuture

Hoping for Cold to Kill Winter Ticks Didn’t Much Help – Still Blame Global Warming

Once again we have the displeasure of reading more nonsense from the media and moose biologists still insisting global warming is making winter ticks on moose more prevalent.

I’m not going to waste me time anymore hoping somebody will listen. Maybe I’ll just ask some simple questions.

If global warming is causing more ticks and during those winters when they are perceived as “average” to even “severe” and the prevalence of ticks basically remains unchanged, they how can anybody, with a straight face, continue to blame global warming for more ticks?

These clowns blame everything on some fake, unscientific claim about a warming planet. This is done so much, I don’t think they would know the real scientific process if it bit them in the face.

Second question: If the theory was that the world was cooling (using the same process of fake data to support warming) would these fake biologists be blaming global cooling because there’s too many ticks and not enough moose to satisfy the moose watchers?

Once Too Many Deer Has Become Too Few and More Coyotes

I am still reminded of Dr. Valerius Geist’s comments he made 21-years ago, in 1994, while attending the annual Southeast Deer Study Group meeting in Charlottesville, Virginia. They told him their problem was, “…dealing with too large populations of whitetail deer.”

Geist responded to them by saying, “Enjoy your problem while it lasts, because the coyote is coming. Once he’s here, you’ll miss your deer problems.”

Historically, coyotes were not part of the ecosystem in the Carolinas. Before 1985, only five of North Carolina’s 100 counties had coyotes. Today, every county in both counties has a thriving population of coyotes, with declines in deer populations reported. According to the S.C. Department of Natural Resources, the state’s deer population has declined by 30 percent since 2002, and much of it is attributed to the coyote invasion.

Source: Turn up the heat on coyotes now – North Carolina Sportsman

Maine Moose Herd in Decline

Maybe more hunters and outdoor people will get sick and tired of the same old crap sandwich that the media doles out and begin asking for facts, instead of fiction, from the media and outdoor biologists.

In this linked-to article, complete with video, take note that Maine’s head moose biologist says nothing about a warming climate, and yet the news agency reporting cannot get through their report without suggesting to its viewers that any perceived moose problems in Maine are the result of moose ticks, caused by global warming.

The other disturbing item in this news account is that in what viewers were presented, there was also no mention of anything other than ticks that are killing the moose, specifically predators!

One last disgusting comment that can be heard is how damned important it is that Maine manages it’s moose population in order to keep those who want to see a moose, happy. Is there ANY consideration that that effort might be part or even all of the cause for spikes in ticks and other diseases? ANY? Of course not! It’s easier to blame a fake global warming scam. It’s a convenient excuse for everything and all things inept and corrupt.

Maine is in the middle of a moose study. From the information that I read, so far, it appears that Lee Kantar, Maine’s lead moose biologist, has kept a pretty good head in this game, and seems to be not eager to draw any conclusions, yet. That may be a good sign. It is imperative that real science, minus politics and lobbying pressures stay out of this study. While I hope that Maine becomes the first state to actually use real science to come to accurate conclusions, I’m not laying down any money that they will.

The moose is an important symbol of Maine. It’s on the state seal. It draws tens of thousands of tourists to be

Source: Maine Moose Herd in Decline

Wolves/Coyotes/Hybrids: What You Talking About?

In testimony before the Maine Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Committee, president and founder of the Maine Wolf Coalition stated that Maine could not legally allow the hunting of coyotes, because the coyote is not a coyote. LD 691 is a proposed bill that would allow for hunting the coyote on Sundays. Maine bans all hunting on Sunday.

John Glowa’s testimony is interesting and reveals, not only his lack of knowledge about wolves, coyotes, hybrids, cross-breeding, DNA, and all associated aspects of this subject, but it also helps to open debate on the real problems we face in dealing with protection of a species for the good of the species and protection of the species for political gain.

The president of the Maine Wolf Coalition gets confused in stating that a coyote is not a coyote because it’s a hybrid and attempts to convince the IFW Committee that there is some magical “statutory” definition, that when applied, renders any coyote hunting illegal. By definition, the wild canines running the Maine woods are the result of cross-breeding and not a planned out hybridization in order to create a mixed breed of wild dog.

A dog is a dog is a dog and when practical, all dogs, regardless of subspecie designation, will interbreed. To assist in the preservation of wild dog subspecies, efforts should be made to keep these subspecies geographically separated as much as possible. This is usually done by limiting populations and not by protecting them at every turn and allowing them to grow unchecked, while thinking that coyotes/wolves are necessary for a healthy forest dwelling and that Nature balances itself. This is romantic nonsense that destroys animal species.

It is a bit spurious that arguments, such as the testimony given to the IFW Committee, claim, in order to, at this moment in time, protect coyotes, put forth the claim that a coyote isn’t a coyote because it has wolf genes in it. On another day, the same committee might hear from the same group that any wild dog that has wolf genes in it is a wolf and must be protected.

Protecting wild dogs, and introducing wild dogs into human-settled landscapes, may be the quickest way I know of to destroy the subspecies. With increased overlapping of wild dog subspecies, all wild dogs, i.e. all subspecies of wolves, coyotes, released domestic dogs, released wolf-dog hybrids and domestic dogs, will, over time, and due to protection, become just a mongrel, cross-bred mutt.

Is this acceptable while Environmentalism works to end hunting and trapping?

It’s what’s for lunch.

Wein plan would concentrate on cull

Deer & Tick Committee member Marc Wein wants to reshuffle the allocation of money from 4-posters to culling of deer.
Source: Wein plan would concentrate on cull | Shelter Island Reporter