August 23, 2017

Two Wolves and a Coyote Walk Into a Bar…..

One wolf says to the others, “Hey, howl you doing these days? Did you read that piece the other day about how farmers clearing land extirpated us wolves and paved the way for you coyotes to go to Maine and live?”

I wonder who makes this stuff up? Perhaps it’s just people like me who like to fabricate stories. Of course, not that many years ago readers would be smart enough to know that animals can’t talk, nor do they frequent bars. But things have changed. And so, I suspect some might read this and think it’s true.

It’s a bit like the guy who took his extremely intelligent dog with him duck hunting. He picked up his friend early in the morning and they went into their blind just before daylight. He wanted to surprise his friend and show him how smart his dog was.

The first opportunity, one man shoots a duck and it lands in the water. The dog owner ordered his dog to retrieve the duck. The dog got to the water’s edge and carefully tip-toed on top of the water and retrieved the duck. The other hunter observed but didn’t say one word.

This same event took place several times until finally the dog’s owner, frustrated, speaks up, “Dang it all Fred! Don’t you notice anything peculiar about my dog?”

Fred says, “Yeah, but I didn’t want to say anything and hurt your feelings, but that dog can’t swim!”

It is highly likely that the wild canine animal that Mainers see in the woods, is not a wolf, nor is it a coyote. Supposedly, scientific experiments have shown that this wild canine is some sort of a mixed breed of various offspring of canines, both wild and domestic. People like to call them hybrids, as though doing so somehow places these nasty mutts in an elevated status among animal perverts. The truth is, it’s a canine that is roaming in the woods of Maine and it is a vehement spreader of disease – at least 30 different viruses, parasites and diseases.

To my knowledge, there is no real historic data that supports the claim that settlers clearing forests extirpated the “wolf” that was found once in the Maine woods. After all, we know for a fact that the creation of farmland, contributed to the growth of the deer herd, which was a great food source for the wolf.

Others want to blame hunting, trapping and the general dislike of the wolf, that caused people to kill them every chance they had. This is only partly true. Much of Maine remained as European settlers found it long after the wolf was thought to be extirpated.

It is not entirely accurate to claim that when man extirpated the wolf, and farmers cleared the land, it ushered in the existence of “coyotes.” I doubt that Maine ever had a “coyote” but has always had some kind of mixed breed of wild canine. The coyote that most Mainers talk about in the Pine Tree State, are hybrid dogs that expanded its range from the Great Lakes region into eastern Canada and northern New England. Now there are so many of them that cross breeding of canines, wild and domestic is happening in rapid fashion. So what’s left? Some think it’s a dog species that deserves to be protected.

Ignorant people, thinking they are protecting wolves and coyotes by allowing them to proliferate unharnessed, don’t realize they are contributing to the animals’ demise. What roams Maine’s woods as a wild, or semi-wild canine, is a great example of that fact. Allowing and promoting the forced existence of wolves with other canines, wild and domestic, is destroying the wolf gene. Not only is the gene of the wolf being destroyed but with that genetic add-mixture, behavior of the offspring changes as well. That can open a can of worms in trying to predict the animal’s behavior.

It is important for people to understand the truth about any region’s history of wild animals, including wild canines. Filling people full of misleading information, often perpetuated by organizations with an agenda, is actually putting the existence and perpetuation of a real canine species in jeopardy.

But, animal perverts don’t care. All they are interested in doing is to save the life of any animal….er, uh, that is unless it’s a rat, tick or some other disease-carrying life form that is infecting or affecting them directly.

Stupid!

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A TALK ON WOLVES, DISEASE AND THE NEED FOR REFORMING THE ESA

Given at the Sugar Camp Town Hall, Sugar Camp, Wisconsin on 8 April 2017, by Jim Beers

Thank you for this opportunity to discuss an aspect of modern wildlife management that is of great importance but that, in my opinion, has been given scandalously short shrift over the past 30 years.

I will speak for about 20 minutes on the topic of wolves and disease; and then for an equal time on what I see as the problems and solutions associated with wolves and the ESA in the United States in 2017 while reserving a similar period for questions.  If this seems like a daunting task to you, it seems to me like being asked to read War and Peace in a similar timeframe!

First, to wolves and disease – More than one of you is probably wondering, who is this guy about to speak about wolves and disease when he probably has never even taken a class in veterinary science?  That is true.  I am no more than an ex-Utah Fish and Game employee; a USFWS Wetland Biologist/Special Agent/Program Analyst/ Chief of National Wildlife Refuge Operations/Congressional Fellow/ Wildlife Biologist and US Trade Representative Delegation Member to the EU on Fur Trade Regulations.  I have a Bachelor’s degree from Utah State in Wildlife Resources and a Master’s degree from the U of Northern Colorado in Public Administration.  I am also a whistleblower to Congress about the theft by USFWS of +/- $60M in State Wildlife Funds from Arms and Ammunition Excise Taxes.  I also testified before a Senate Committee opposing the creation of federal Invasive Species authority.  I have been speaking and writing about wildlife and government programs all across the Nation for the 17 years since I was sent home and forced to retire from USFWS after a 32-year career.

This is the third time I have been asked to speak about wolves and the disease dimensions of their presence in the past 17 years.  Why is that?

Well, I first became aware of why when I was a speaker at a western cattlemen’s affair and I sat in on a talk by the state Wildlife Veterinarian and the Agriculture Livestock Veterinarian.  I innocently asked a question about wolves and they huddled and refused to answer and then said they had to get back to the Capital and left.  A few years later I was asked to explain about wolves and disease to a Natural Resource Committee of a State Legislature.  When I asked why me, they said they couldn’t find anyone else.

Looking back over these 17 years, most veterinarians, like many government wildlife folks, give me a wide berth.  With the exception of an old horse veterinarian who lost two sons to the defense of our Nation, and who squired me around one day through remote wolf, cattle and former elk hunting country, I confess that I have encountered only three kinds of veterinarians in my travels.

First, there are the pet doctors whose customers understandably “love” their pets and who are generally repulsed by trapping or lethal animal control or, for that matter, anyone that would denigrate the wolf or the “native ecosystem”.  They, understandably, wouldn’t touch this topic with a 10” pole.

Second, there are the government veterinarians.  They are like Urban Police Chiefs.  That is to say they are hired (and fired or marginalized) by Mayors and Agency Directors.  When Police “Chiefs” (not elected Sheriffs) chirp about gun control, they are little more than “Charlie McCarthies” for their boss, the Mayor.  Similarly, what state or federal Veterinarian, most of whose Agencies and Directors embrace unconditionally the federal protection and spread of wolves in defiance of many of those forced to live with the wolves, would risk controversial statements jeopardizing the agency’s proclamations and policies regarding wolves as benign additions to a communities’ wildlife?

Finally, there are the University Veterinary Science professors.  Their students flock to this over-manned profession because they “love animals”, a laudable and understandable motive.  The bureaucracies that generate grants and support for much, if not most, of their research (i.e. the ticket for more grad students, bigger budgets, tenure, and retirement security) do so for a wide variety of topics. Today, such “research” fills Veterinary Journals with ever more unintelligible (to the general public) data than modern economic research “papers”.  Additionally, the Universities understand that both state and federal governments are “all in” for wolves and that controversial reports or fodder for complaints that enable public protests would jeopardize far more than funding and other support for wildlife veterinary issues in the future.

So, here you are stuck with me.

  1. Wolves are very wide-ranging Canids that unlike our dogs get no Parvo/Distemper/Rabies/etc. shots and treatments.  They are not only fearless, they frequent human habitations routinely and with growing impunity as they increase in densities or experience no challenging behavior from humans or human settlements.  They are periodically concentrating on pastures or homesteads or big game wintering areas or calving areas as with moose in their wanderings so that when they pick up an infection or disease, they will likely go to similar surroundings where similar animals or humans can be infected.  They are constantly sticking their snout in and eating organs from a variety of animals both dying and deceased for a period of time thus exposing themselves to a very wide variety of bacteria, viruses, prions and other pathogens. It is not that they all carry all these diseases, it is that when they do get a really bad one like anthrax or rabies or foot-and-mouth or Mad Cow or chronic wasting disease – stopping the spread is almost impossible as when dogs and other wildlife disease vectors, that don’t roam far and wide, are killed to stop outbreaks of things like anthrax or smallpox.

Wolves travel in packs; romp; fight; and, like bats, sleep and groom together.  They are very often silent (and therefore unidentifiable) vectors spreading diseases, pathogens and infections among themselves and over a wide area to humans, domestic animals and other wildlife in a multitude of ways.  They are all but impossible to eliminate quickly or efficiently as when there is a rabies, foot-and-mouth, smallpox, anthrax or Mad Cow (BSE) outbreak.  Consider the havoc, often documented in early America of rabid wolves that went for miles biting everything they encounter, or the Russian sawyer (along with many others at the time, several of whom died) bitten by a rabid wolf while running a chain saw a few years ago.  Indian villages, trappers, homesteaders, and even forts with soldiers all are mentioned in historical records and reports of the terror and death rabid wolves were and are capable of imposing.

Certainly bites are an obvious danger for infection.  Less obvious (and ignored or denied) are:

–          Saliva left in yards and along (increasingly urban) paths on objects that are of interest to dogs that mouth them and nose them before returning home.

–          Mucous from a sneeze or runny nose left in areas frequented by people like yards and camping areas where dogs, children and others are exposed and can become carriers.

–          Feces laden with various tapeworm eggs (some of which develop deadly cysts years later; some of which last more than a year on the ground around where deposited and are capable of being transported by dog’s feet or shoes into homes, tents or campers onto rugs and elsewhere where small kids are especially vulnerable to ingesting them unknowingly) and also Parvo viruses that also have long infection periods where deposited.  Feces are a particular problem when undigested meat is passed and dogs do what they often do with

feces containing partially digested meat.

–          Blood transfer or deposit from accidents, fights with dogs or other wolves or incidents with other animals creates a potential infectious transfer to others and even a temporarily infected site that can infect others that touch or mouth anything coming in contact with the area, especially in places like campgrounds and rural residence surroundings.

–          Oozing sores or unhealed infections are an area of concern, in my opinion, but I could not find any information on such matter or what threat it may or may not pose.

–          Fur between toes and on the body coming in contact with the ground or infected animals can capture, transport and spread Mad Cow (BSE) prions; anthrax bacterium (capable of being absorbed through the skin, ingested or inhaled); and foot-and-mouth, and smallpox viruses among other pathogens.

For the record, I no longer let dogs lick me. I helped my Dad raise Dobermans as a kid and as a young man I had several retrievers, one of which I am about to tell you about.

The following is a list of diseases carried and transmitted by wolves.  While not totally comprehensive, it represents over 30+ infections and diseases that have been attributed to wolves.  Those that can infect humans are followed by an (H), those that affect other animals are followed by an (OA).

  1. Rabies (H) (OA)
  2. Brucellosis (H) (OA) ** i.e. Undulant Fever

Hydatid Disease (2):

  1. Echinococcus granulosis (H) (OA)
  2. Echinococcus multilocularis  (H) (OA) ** i.e. Deadly Cysts
  1. Anthrax (H) (OA) ** Cleanup Requirements
  2. Encephalitis (H) (OA)
  3. (Granulomatous meningoencephalitis) (OA)
  4. (Necrotizing encephalitis) (OA)
  5. Great Lakes Fish Tapeworm (H) (OA)
  6. Smallpox (H) (OA) ** i.e. Aral Sea Is.
  7. Mad Cow Disease(BSE) (OA) (H) ** i.e.UK
  8. Chronic Wasting Disease (OA)

From Ticks (13) ** Carried by wolves: Natural History?

  1. Anemia (H)
  2. Dermatosis (H)
  3. Tick paralysis (H)
  4. Babesiosis (H)
  5. Anaplasmosis (H)
  6. Erlichia (H)
  7. E. Coast Fever (H)
  8. Relapsing Fever (H)
  9. Rocky Mtn. Spotted Fever (H)
  10. (A new type of Spotted Fever is being investigated) (H)
  11. Powassan Fever (H)
  12. Heartland Fever (H)
  13. Lyme Disease (H)

From Fleas (4) Carried by wolves:

  1. Plague (H) ** i.e.MT (OA)
  2. Bubonic Plague (H)
  3. Pneumonic Plague (H)
  4. Flea-Borne (Endemic) Typhus (H)
  1. Distemper (OA)
  2. Neospora caninum (OA)
  3. 2 Types of Mange (H) (OA)
  4. GID (a disease of wild and domestic sheep) (OA)
  5. Foot-and-Mouth (OA)
  6. Parvo (OA)

Of the 30+ diseases and pathogens listed, 27 affect humans and many of these are deadly.  Whether it is a child ingesting tapeworm eggs from a ranch house floor rug, or a dog walker or jogging soccer Mom encountering wolves as a schoolteacher did recently in Alaska that resulted in a horrible death, the fact that these human health hazards have been given short-shrift and even covered up by government agencies and their allies as they forcibly introduce, protect and spread wolves is nothing short of scandalous.

How do you control wolves as vectors of these diseases when there is an outbreak?  Who pays for control?  Whatmethods are permissible? Who is responsible?  These sorts of questions need to be answered before we can determine where wolves are to be tolerated; in what numbers; and how these things are to be achieved ad infinitum.  I am a strong believer that State Governments, recognizing the primary interests and desires of the Local communities expected to bear the costs of hosting wolves in their midst, are the proper government authority for such decisions if the first and foremost purpose of all government as defined in the Preamble o0f our Constitution,i.e. – “domestic Tranquility” and “the general Welfare” of the all the citizenry – is to be achieved and maintained.

  1. What are we to make of all this?  How did it happen?  Most importantly, what can or should be done?

Wolves are like mosquitoes: both are numerous, found worldwide, and both create serious and increasing problems for humans closely correlated in magnitude to the human densities found in modern settled landscapes where each is found.  Each has benefits that are marginal as when mosquitoes and their larva provide food for fish and especially young birds with brief time windows in which to grow, fly and migrate.  Similarly wolves existing in relatively uninhabited (by humans) habitats create an insular plant and animal community that, while described by some appreciatively as “native” or “balanced”, provides a biological comparison for plant and animal management in more densely inhabited and settled landscapes as found in the Lower 48 States.  Even in these less inhabited landscapes like Alaska and Siberia, human interventions are required.  Examples of the latter being:

–          When humans are killed, attacked or injured

–          When disease outbreaks occur

–          When moose and elk et al needed for human food are being decimated

–          When wildlife licensing revenues and matching funds dwindle due to scarcity of game

–          When cattle, reindeer or sheep et al husbandry is being decimated.

–          When always fragile rural economies and communities worldwide are diminished in any of the many myriad ways that wolves can affect them from dog killings to threatening or attacking especially children and the elderly.

To say that a world with a Canada full of thousands of wolves; an Alaska bursting with wolves; a vast Siberia **Magadan/Kazakhstan/India (indeed much of Asia) with high wolf densities; a Europe currently dealing unsuccessfully with wolves continent wide; and a world full of dogs & coyotes (that are currently cross breeding with wolves in the settled landscapes of the Lower 48 States) dingoes and jackals (all 4 of which breeds can breed with wolves and produce viable or fertile offspring) ** current crossbreeding – to say in such a world that WOLVES ARE (currently) ENDANGERED in the settled landscapes of the Lower 48 States and :

–          Require federal pre-emption of traditional and Constitutional State Wildlife Authorities and Jurisdictions.

–          Require the expenditure of millions of scarce federal and state general taxes and wildlife funds.

–          Require preposterous federal bureaucratic authority to take private property without compensation in defiance of the Constitution.

–          That rural communities forced to host the wolves are to have NO say regarding their presence, numbers, distribution, control or impacts.

Is (*?) to say the least.

* What? – “Absurd”? “Crazy”?  “Misguided”? “Ignorant”? “Unjust”? “Illegal”? “Not what it appears to be”? “A direct threat to rural ‘domestic Tranquility’ and the ‘general Welfare’ of the Nation”?  NOTE: I confess to wrestling continuously with the right term to use both for the policies and instigators of this misbegotten fiasco. Too harsh or too truthful words turn off many readers and listeners.

The federal bureaucratic placement of wolves is an arbitrary nightmare for groups out of political favor **New England? and almost always not in any direct way affecting those lobbyists, ideologues and politicians enabling the wolf programs.  Wolf types in the Lower 48 (i.e. red, Mexican, timber, etc.) are simply names for varieties similar to other widespread mammals like the large whitetails in Saskatchewan descending in size and varying in coloration to the tinier and lighter whitetails found in the Southwest to the tiniest whitetails found in the hot and food-poor FL Keys.  Was the ESA really passed to preserve such morphologies?

There is an abundance of hidden agendas behind wolf programs from human population and gun control to eliminating hunting and trapping and surgically parsing rural America into expanding federal ownerships and easements with decreasing land costs.

As with grizzly bear expansions in the Lower 48 States, no one is responsible for the calamities brought about by wolves.

Only last week the morning the paper reported the first Zika-infected childbirth in the US.  The child was born in San Diego.  Imagine if you will, if mosquitos had been eliminated from the San Diego area one hundred years ago and if only ten or twenty years ago the federal government had announced the “scientific” finding that the lack of mosquitoes in the San Diego environs was unacceptable.  Suppose further that the federal government then initiated and the government of California enthusiastically embraced (no surprise there) the reintroduction, protection, and spread of the “native San Diego Yellow Mosquito”. This was done with the enthusiastic support of:

–          Midwest, East Coast and Northwest environmental organizations that collected millions to “save the San Diego Yellow Mosquito”.

–          Federal politicians that accepted “contributions” from these groups and then were subsequently featured in the news as a “friend of the Mosquito”.

–          Professors and entomologists that shared in a bonanza of grants, graduate student increases, tenure and public adulation as they justified the banning of spraying and other controls of mosquitoes and their kin; the need to further regulate and restrict chemical production and use; and the need for a myriad of new laws forbidding the removal of any standing water suitable for the mosquito’s many needs to reproduce and live.

–          Federal and State bureaucrats that outlined the need for more employees, bigger budgets, more regulations, new amendments to existing laws, “key” land acquisition and easement, and promotions and bonuses as their “workload increased”.

Could that be a “just” law authorizing such actions?  Would the Constitution in any conceivable way allow such a travesty?  Would San Diego parents and parents-to-be tolerate such a law?  Would the parents of an infected child be able to sue federal politicians, federal bureaucrats or “scientists” that denied or hid the dangers they knew to exist? Of course this could never happen, but not because:

–          Mosquitoes (and wolves) are ubiquitous

–          There is no San Diego Yellow Mosquito

–          The environmental organizations and government would look silly.

This would not happen because it would be the urban voting majority being imposed upon.  The suburban (with a few exceptions like NJ) and rural voters neither demand nor contribute to such impositions on their city cousins so the National Organizations do not reap millions; politicians do not reap votes; professors do not reap emoluments; and bureaucrats do not reap dollars and fame.

It is a fact that no one is responsible for any of the many wolf, or grizzly bears’ deadly effects or the economic and cultural sectors that they diminish and that what happened here with the Mosquito is and has happened with the wolf and grizzly bear to name just two such “Listings”.

Here is what I have learned in 17 years of dealing with the ESA and wolves et al:

  1. It is unjust and unconstitutional to empower federal bureaucrats (and their enablers from politicians and “scientists” to wealthy environmental lobby groups) to seize State wildlife and wild plant authorities and jurisdictions and violate with impunity such Constitutional Rights as are found in the I, IV, V, VI, VII, or X Amendments as defined in The Bill of Rights, and as is being done under the color of the Endangered Species Act.
  2. Large predators like wolves and grizzly bears are not endangered or threatened.  (Grizzlies are abundant in W Canada, Alaska and N. Asia). Both are very dangerous and destructive animals; and their presence, abundance, and distribution should be under State authority with primary attention given to those local communities expected to live with either of these animals.  To say that either, especially grizzles, belongs anywhere in the settled landscapes of the Lower 48 in a protected status is a position that anyone valuing human life and American freedoms should think long and hard about. Current magnanimous “return of management” to State governments by federal bureaucracies with attendant “minimum” wolf levels is a chimera or mirage, like promises of “compensation” to ranchers and others, simply short-term public relations ploys intended to continue drainage of wildlife conservation funding and programs until a future push to invigorate greater federal control is judged politically possible.
  3. State wildlife agencies, state governments and Universities have each been corrupted by the current system ** PR theft w/o repayment and have become little more than subcontractors to federal bureaucrats, powerful Non-Government Organizations and their agendas.  Governments no longer serve constituents, and Universities and science no longer seek nor publicize the truth regarding these issues.  A companion issue with wolves that draws only snickers today is the downplayed but very real concerns that present wolf immersions in the dense Canid populations on the Lower 48 States spell disaster for future wolves as crossbreeding with coyotes and dogs point to a future similar to that of Russian Caucasian immigrants to Formosa over a hundred years ago that today only linger in a rare Caucasian facial feature in that otherwise dense Mongolian populous.
  4. If urban/environmental organizations and voters want wolves or grizzly bears in XYZ let them first convince those folks living in XYZ to appeal to the State government with a plan to do so and how to finance it.  Counties could allow these animals if the residents and their neighbors agree under a system like Virginia has for deer hunting wherein the Counties decide what guns, methods, seasons, bags, and goals are permissible for deer hunting in THEIR County recognizing the County  resident’s desires.  Adjoining Counties could oppose the proposal and/or authorize the dispatch of any such animal in their County under certain or any circumstances. In other words if Wyoming and Idaho and Montana do not want any wolves, when a wolf  steps out of Yellowstone, State laws and regulations could authorize shooting or trapping 365 24/7.  Other federal Parks, Forests, BLM and USFWS lands would and should need State permission as with other property owners in the State to introduce or maintain such wildlife just as if they wanted to introduce and maintain pythons or Asian carp in or on their ownership. Yellowstone has a very singular and unique legal status regarding such matters.
  5. Non-large-predator Endangered Species Act programs and policies have also become corrupt political activities.  Too often they are thinly-disguised environmental and animal rights agendas and ploys to destroy dams, irrigation, farms, ranches, private property, hunting, trapping, fishing, public land access, Local governments, sustainable and renewable natural resource use and management, national sovereignty, corporations, human development nationally and internationally, and a long list of human cultural and traditional pursuits considered politically incorrect at the moment.

For instance, while I was in Washington recently, the paper described a pending Endangered Listing of a Bee that is declining nationally.  The Bee occupies burrows in intermittently plowed fields and are “thought to be” affected by pesticides sold by “Dow” Chemical.  The Listing article (like snail darters intended to stop a dam; or smelt and suckers intended to close down farms and irrigation; or spotted owls intended to eliminate forest – i.e. timber – management) painted objecting farmers and the Dow Chemical Corporation as villains.  The Listing will and is intended to importune widespread farm production and practices in the Midwest thereby adversely affecting the national economy, the food supply and food availability for the poor.  It will also disrupt a giant Chemical “Corporation” bottom line, facilities and processes for an unknown time and with likely significant financial and job losses.  Now while all this may please some elements in the country it is counterproductive to American prosperity and our modern way of life.

What if the process for conserving true species in extremis was harmonized between Federal and State lawmakers and authorized and mandated that federal and state scientists first jointly determine what is causing the decline and not just hammer “all the usual suspects”?  Then work with USDA and farmers to identify and evaluate alternatives and their costs to modify practices or equipment.  Then have federal and state scientists work with and through the National Institute of Science and Technology (that routinely works with American Corporations on such matters) to cooperate with Dow Chemical on research for specific adjustments and tolerable costs to their products and existing infrastructure to reduce bee declines.  All of this should be accomplished with specifically requested Congressional funding which, if not authorized, means it is not of sufficient importance in line with other national priorities at the moment.

This is the opposite of the bureaucratic hammer in use today and returns to recognition of the Constitutional role of elected officials authorizing, funding and administering things currently left to bureaucrats with a bag of money to do all sorts of mischief and harm without accountability or responsibility except for their own careers.

  1. I am constantly told the ESA will NEVER be repealed (even though a similar travesty, Prohibition, authorized by a Constitutional Amendment, was repealed when its pernicious and corrupting effects were no longer deniable).
  2. I am constantly told that the ESA will Never be amended because any politician supporting such a thing would be deported or jailed by environmentalists, animal rightists, professors, teachers, bureaucrats, and a hodgepodge of urban residents that could be mobilized to “save” the environment.
  3. Could elected rural Sheriffs resist these federal impositions like some Mayors, Governors and County officials are resisting federal illegal immigrant enforcement activities?
  4. Could ESA reforms be enacted in laws, regulations and policies amid the turbulence of reform and confrontation now taking place in Washington, DC?

Questions:  Is rural America slated to continue falling behind the advancements and opportunities of the rest of the Nation to become like many rural African and Asian societies; places where “life is” as Thomas Hobbes once said, “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short?  Where residents sell trinkets along the road or move to cities to perform menial tasks?  Are rural Americans, rural communities and urban America to be treated equally or are rural Americans and their communities and economies to be permanently inferior American sectors at the mercy of urban dreamers and pandering politicians?

How we recognize and resolve these self-imposed problems, involves and affects far more than wolves, bees and imaginary mosquitoes.

Jim Beers

8 April 2017

If you found this worthwhile, please share it with others.  Thanks.

Jim Beers is a retired US Fish & Wildlife Service Wildlife Biologist, Special Agent, Refuge Manager, Wetlands Biologist, and Congressional Fellow. He was stationed in North Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York City, and Washington DC.  He also served as a US Navy Line Officer in the western Pacific and on Adak, Alaska in the Aleutian Islands.  He has worked for the Utah Fish & Game, Minneapolis Police Department, and as a Security Supervisor in Washington, DC.  He testified three times before Congress; twice regarding the theft by the US Fish & Wildlife Service of $45 to 60 Million from State fish and wildlife funds and once in opposition to expanding Federal Invasive Species authority.  He resides in Eagan, Minnesota with his wife of many decades.

 

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Beyond Lyme: New Tick-Borne Diseases On The Rise In U.S.

For some reason, ticks flock to mice. Other animals groom the bloodsuckers off and kill them. But mice don’t. They let the critters attach and feed on their face and ears.

Ostfeld says he has seen mice with 50, 60, even 100 ticks on their face and ears. “When I first noticed this, it really grabbed my attention.”

Most of these ticks are carrying Lyme disease, Ostfeld has found. Others are carrying anaplasmosis, babesiosis or Powassan. Some ticks harbor two, three or even four pathogens at once.

Theses observations gave him an idea:<<<Read More>>>

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Killing Ticks With Foods Laced With Anti-Parasitic Meds

What could possibly go wrong?

I read an article this morning about how in one area of Texas, where a certain tick carries a disease known as cattle fever. The plan, on deer ranches, is to lace the corn being fed to deer, with this anti-parasitic drug. Hmmm.

One small paragraph in the article states: “The use of treated corn or pellets to control internal parasites in deer is not new, as it has been used by deer and exotic breeders for years. It is not currently legal for use on wild deer, although some ranchers advocate that it should be.” (emboldening added)

In my travels I have heard of suggestions similar to this to kill ticks in deer that cause Lyme disease and winter ticks in moose, that can eventually kill a moose by depleting its blood supply. I don’t believe I have ever heard any serious discussion about this within the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife.

In a related event, those willing to acknowledge that wolves can carry and spread up to 50 different diseases, viruses and parasites, have suggested some kind of “feeding” program that would address the more deadly of the viruses, such as Echinococcus granulosis and Echinococcus multilocularis.

Some of the problems that should be examined thoroughly before any attempt at feeding wild deer and moose medicine-laced foods, is first to have a complete understanding of why there is a problem, where it comes from and how it is spread. We don’t know this information.

In Maine’s case, where Lyme disease is present, and where winter ticks on moose have become a very serious problem for the animal, there is no consensus that can answer any necessary questions. In other words, it hasn’t even been determined if Maine is growing too many moose and in some places, seemingly coincidental to prevalence of Lyme disease, too many deer. Is it responsible to use chemicals in wild deer and moose, simply because we want to see more deer and moose?

There are so many factors that influence diseases, parasites and viruses, the notion to stuff an animal’s food with drugs to supposedly stop one action, might create a firestorm of other problems. Wildlife managers should know these things and if they don’t, it’s time they did.

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Killing Deer to Kill “Deer” Ticks

I was reading George Smith’s article about how the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) is making plans within their proposals to draft 15-year management plans for deer, to figure out how the state can manage a “socially acceptable” population of deer and at the same time mitigate the affects of Lyme disease, at a socially acceptable level. Lyme disease is believed by most to be carried by the deer and thus deer have become the target. Because the deer is the target, the controversy comes from three different entities – those who find deer cute and cuddly and want them running all about their land; those who want them available in ample supply to hunt and fill their freezers; those who hate hunters and are willing to kill deer so hunters can’t enjoy their sport.

It certainly does appear that reducing deer populations (to what level I’m not sure there is a standard number due to varying influences and environmental factors) will reduce incidences of man contracting Lyme disease.

The life cycle of the tick responsible for carrying the infectious disease, including all directly influencing factors, is complicated. Perhaps the deer has become the easy target due to a lack of understanding about how to interrupt the life cycle of the tick – more appropriately should be called the mouse tick.

The deer is a host.  This means that an adult tick hitches a ride on a deer for the purpose of obtaining a meal of blood. This is all a necessary part of the life cycle. It is not the deer, however that gives the disease to the tick. The tick does infect the deer, but studies have shown that a deer will “cleanse” itself of the disease and thus is not considered a carrier of the disease.

It’s the white-footed mouse that is the main culprit of transmitting the disease. Once infected, the mouse remains a carrying until death. After the tick leaves the deer, the female ticks hatch all new larvae. The larvae make their way to the mouse, where the Lyme disease is passed to the nymph. As I understand the cycle, the tick larvae cannot have the infection but pick it up from the mouse as it becomes a nymph. The infected nymph grows to an adult and begins looking for a host for another blood meal.

Incidentally, the larvae doesn’t only go to the mouse. It can travel to other rodents and small wildlife, where the disease can be passed to the nymph, which can become an adult tick and begin looking for a blood meal.

It would appear that any interruption or change of this cycle would limit or change the prevalence of the tick. One way that has been tried is to reduce the populations of deer. In places where deer populations are very dense, a serious thinning of the herd becomes a reasonable limitation to tick growth and prevalence. It would only make sense…wouldn’t it?

Have we looked enough at finding ways to control the white-footed mouse? Snakes, owls, bobcats, weasels, and foxes are common predators. Are there changes in these predators and their environment that are effecting the white-footed mouse? Short of the use of chemicals, is the “natural” way of keeping mice in check being interrupted some how? Are changes in our ecosystems increasing, decreasing or having no effect on the perpetuation of the tick and Lyme disease?

Modeling in recent years has suggested that perhaps those predators that readily find the white-footed mouse a prey species, have been reduced in numbers to where they are ineffective at any kind of control over the mouse. There are a couple of difficulties in this presentation. First, to my knowledge, the modeling has not been taken to the field, or, if it has, results have not been made public. Another issue is that “scientists” can’t even agree on what predators consider the mouse’s prey. Some say the fox is the biggest predator of the mouse and some say the coyote is. Some say that even though the list of natural predators of the mouse is varied, there is little interruption of the perpetuation of mice.

I would find it interesting that it appears that the incidence of Lyme disease has increased right along with the prevalence of coyotes. If coyotes regularly eat white-footed mice for lunch, wouldn’t it make some sense that this would tend to reduce the prevalence of the spread of Lyme disease?

The argument is also made that the presence of coyotes limits the number of foxes, therefore, fewer mice are eaten. The theory has been laid on the table that coyotes do eat mice, but live in a more spread out habitat than the fox and so the effective result is that fewer mice get eaten, thus more ticks and more disease. Consider also that, for those familiar with the boots-on-the-ground eating habits of the coyote, an animal that will eat anything, the diet of the coyote includes “snakes, owls, bobcats, weasels, foxes and probably any other creature that, given the opportunity, would feast on a white-footed mouse.

So, depending upon which bandwagon best fits your narrative, will determine whether you want to kill deer, mice, or coyotes. For the MDIFW, their job will, more than likely, end up being a matter of making deer management decisions based on social demands rather than good science. But this is nothing new.

But above all,

DON’T GO LOOK!

 

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Idaho judge holds Forest Service, top leaders in contempt

Idaho Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill has held the U.S. Forest Service and its top officials in contempt of court for failing to abide by his 2009 ruling against using recomendations of an advisory committee’s report on disease transmission between domestic and wild sheep.

Source: Idaho judge holds Forest Service, top leaders in contempt – Idaho – Capital Press

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Dogs as Sources and Sentinels of Parasites in Humans and Wildlife, Northern Canada

ABSTRACT

A minimum of 11 genera of parasites, including 7 known or suspected to cause zoonoses, were detected in dogs in 2 northern Canadian communities. Dogs in remote settlements receive minimal veterinary care and may serve as sources and sentinels for parasites in persons and wildlife, and as parasite bridges between wildlife and humans.

Dogs as Sources and Sentinels of Parasites in Humans and Wildlife, Northern Canada (PDF Download Available). Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/5594278_Dogs_as_Sources_and_Sentinels_of_Parasites_in_Humans_and_Wildlife_Northern_Canada [accessed Feb 18, 2016].

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The New Orders for More Disorder?

The list below, seems to indicate the “new orders” for the ordering of more disorder.

From the Council on Foreign Disorder:

“Tensions Between Saudi Arabia and Iran”

“Ecuador’s Oil Dependency”

“Divide in Cyprus”

“New Order of Disorder for Libya”

“The Strange Tale of Sino-Pakistani Friendship”

..and my favorite:  “The Zika Virus Isn’t Just an Epidemic.  It’s Here To Stay”

 

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Epigenome

 

An epigenome consists of a record of the chemical changes to the DNA and histone proteins of an organism; these changes can be passed down to an organism’s offspring via transgenerational epigenetic inheritance. Changes to the epigenome can result in changes to the structure of chromatin and changes to the function of the genome.  (wikipedia)

 

In the “2015 Lubbock Conference Session 4:  Rob Sibka – Nephilim Genetics and the Rise of the X-Men” video, changes in genes via the epigenome are explained in short detail neat the time-frame of 104 minutes.

 

 

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Zika “Virus”

From ForeignPolicy.com

 …”but the virus would keep coming back year after year, popping out of its remote hiding places. And in the end, the only hope for eliminating human disease would rest with the invention of an effective vaccine and mass, routine vaccination of hundreds of millions of people across the Western Hemisphere.”

…and the life expectancy of mosquitoes is…?

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