August 21, 2019

S.F. Don’t Know How to Stop Woman Who Breeds, Releases Wolves Rats

SAN FRANCISCO — Authorities in San Francisco say their hands are tied when it comes to stopping a woman who has been breeding hundreds of rats in her home and then releasing them into public parks.<<<Read More>>>

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Is Socialized Wildlife Management Killing Maine’s Moose?

MooseTickMap*Editor’s Note*: Below I have republished an article I wrote in February of 2012 called, “Are Winter Ticks Killing Maine’s Moose Population?” I have edited this report to update bad links and to remove some information that is not exactly that relevant to current events.

The point of republishing the article is in response to the recent announcement that the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW) is going to reduce available moose permits this late summer and fall by nearly 30% due to a significant die-off of moose during the most recent winter event. The responses to this announcement are mostly based on bad information, especially coming from those who believe the increased number of ticks killing moose is attributed to “global warming”; conveniently that term has been changed to “climate change” in order to fool more people. Persisting in the mantra of climate change is dishonest at best and shows ignorance to an understanding of the life cycle of the winter moose tick and what environmental and biological conditions effect the tick.

Burying our heads in the sand and blindly following climate change as the excuse du jour is partly a product of socialized wildlife management. Socialized wildlife management began when our wildlife managers abandoned sound and scientific animal biology and replaced it with social tolerances and desires of the public in what they wanted for wildlife in their neighborhoods. This, of course, is utter nonsense and is often referred to as “Romance Biology” – that is a form of fantasy or idealistic coexistence with animals based on some mythological notion that nature will balance itself if man would just shrivel up and go away.

In addressing Maine’s moose herd, we know that over the past several years, people have clamored and whined to the state that they wanted more and more moose to “watch”; some even claiming huge money to be made with moose watching tours. But is this social demand for more moose biologically sound?

It is my theory, and I’m not alone in these thoughts, that following the attack of the spruce budworm that resulted in the clear-cutting of hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions of acres of infested forests, the resulting landscape, as the forests regenerated, made for prime moose habitat, as well as habit for the snowshoe hare which helps explain the resurgence of Canada lynx.

Maine’s moose population grew rapidly and without definite tools at the disposal of moose managers, it was only educated guesstimates used to determine what might have been a reasonable number of moose. We should have known things were growing too fast when the state had to offer moose hunting permits in some southern Wildlife Management Districts. With recent aerial counts we now have a better idea.

In the link that will appear below of work done by William Samuel about moose ticks, Samuel provides a map that shows where moose ticks appear. The map also shows the range of the moose and as most of us know the moose in Maine are at the southern end of the range. For that reason alone shouldn’t we be concerned that a moose population that has grown to an official count of 75,000, with some estimations up near 90,000, that this is not normal?

If MDIFW is going to continue to guide their wildlife management by social demands, the future and health of wildlife populations can probably expect more of disease, parasite, worms and other infestations.

As is pointed out in the republished article below, maybe instead of reducing the moose harvest to keep number artificially high, we should considering an overall reduction in population. William Samuel does say that more moose mean more ticks. After all, ticks thrive when there are a lot of hosts to suck blood from.

Are Winter Ticks Killing Maine’s Moose Population?

There seems to be a bit more information about winter ticks that I haven’t found in any Maine publications that deals more in depth with what happens in the fall when the winter tick larvae are gathering on vegetation waiting for a free ride with a host. In addition to that, while these winter ticks effect all wild ungulates, why pick on the moose so much. And, it is said that the winter ticks don’t actually kill the moose, but rarely, are we looking at an honest assessment of all factors that kill a moose weakened by tens of thousands of blood sucking ticks?

Lee Kantar says that the winter tick is a “huge contributor” to the death of some moose, he also points out that, “it’s not the sole cause”. Even on the MDIFW website [Note: the original link is no longer valid after MDIFW redesigned their website. In it’s place MDIFW links to an off-site location for information about winter ticks.], information provided about moose states that, “winter tick and lung worm infestations rarely kill moose”.

This information is supported in existing studies about moose and winter ticks. William M. Samuel and Dwight A. Welch, “Winter Ticks on Moose and Other Ungulates: Factors Influencing Their Population Size,”[Once again the original link I had on studies by William Samuel and Dwight Welch is no longer valid. The actual study now is behind a pay wall. I will provide here a link to a preview of a book with the title I’ve shown. It is in this preview where the map of where moose ticks prevail is available.] states that winter ticks (dermacentor albipictus) being the cause of death isn’t certain because, “unequivocal evidence is lacking”.

I think therefore it might be honest to conclude that the cause of death in the majority of dead moose being found in the Maine woods that are inundated with ticks, was not the tick alone. There had to have been other factors. We’ll address those in a moment.

First I think it important to better understand what takes place in the fall of the year. We have read statements from biologists and outdoor sportsmen that seem to indicate that Maine needs little snow and very cold temperatures to kill off the ticks. While that may be true it’s not the entire story in the life cycle of these ticks.

Samuel and Welch state that for there to be significant die-offs of winter ticks, you need 6 consecutive days in which the temperature does not exceed 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit. This is not the only way to kill the ticks and/or lessen the severity of ticks on moose.

During the fall months, in Maine’s climate around September and October, the winter tick larvae find their way onto vegetation. They clump together on the ends of small branches etc. These larvae can be found on vegetation just above the ground to quite high up in trees. The larvae wait until a passing, warm-bodied host, in this case a moose, passes by and then they attach themselves to the moose and the ride begins. You can read all the splendid details by reading the studies, etc.

It is during this time of year, September/October, that certain weather events can have a significant effect on how severe the tick season will become. Early cold temperatures, especially those below freezing, will greatly reduce the activity of the larvae, i.e. limiting their effectiveness of attaching themselves to the moose or even migrating up the stems of vegetation.

Early snows can bury the larvae and stiff fall winds will blow the larvae off the vegetation scattering it around and to the ground preventing the larvae from being able to find a host. The studies of Samuel and Welch, as well as others [original link can no longer be found], seem to agree that the weather events of the fall have a greater effect on tick production than hoping for enough snow and cold in winter to kill the ticks. Without a host, the larvae die.

There are other interesting things to be discovered about moose and winter ticks. For example, these winter ticks bother all wild ungulates, i.e. deer, moose, elk, etc., but most scientists will agree that it seems to be the moose that is the most effected. It is assumed that it all has to do with timing.

The aggregation of the larvae on vegetation seems to more closely fall in line with the timing of the moose mating season. During this time, moose are most active, covering greater amounts of territory than normal and male moose travel more than the females and thus explains the observation by some that it seems bull moose are more effected by the winter ticks than cows. I believe this conclusion about bull moose vs. cow moose is based on assumptive reasoning than anything concluded through scientific study.

In the Samuel/Welch study, experiments were conducted and it was determined that moose have an aversion to larvae/tick infested food. Imagine if they didn’t. If moose have an ability to smell or sense the larvae on the vegetation and in their food, it might also help to explain the claims of some and what is obvious on the ground that predators and scavengers won’t touch the dead carcass of a tick infested moose.

Studies have shown us that there can exist tens of thousands of ticks on any one moose and that this number of ticks can certainly put the moose into a weakened state. Moose are already in a weakened state just trying to survive the winters. Compound that with 50,000 ticks and the problems snowball. However, as we have learned, the ticks alone rarely kill a moose but certainly contribute to it.

When the blood sucking begins, the moose spends much of it’s time “grooming”. Studies tell us that moose that are troubled by the biting ticks do not bed down as often nor as long as non infected moose. This of course tires the animal even more.

While studies seem to be lacking on exactly what happens to the composition of the moose’s blood while all these ticks are feasting, it is honest to assume that the more female, blood sucking ticks there are on a moose, factoring also the moose’s body mass, the greater a weakened state is realized due to loss of blood.

All of these factors and more, make the moose more vulnerable to all the other elements that contribute to normal winter kill. In other words, it becomes more difficult to get enough nourishment; loss of blood and reduced winter hair makes the moose more susceptible to hypothermia; spending so much time “grooming” expends valuable energy needed for survival and with all these losses a moose certainly could not ward off attacks and harassment by predators.

This is perhaps where I’ll get ambushed but please consider the facts and possibilities. There is no denying that coyotes/wolves will harass and kill moose, deer and elk during their weakened winter states. Even though it is seen and believed to be accurate that predators and even scavengers will not touch a tick-infested moose carcass, at what point does a pack of hungry wolves/coyotes know their target is tick infested.

Some of us have been made aware through written and video accounts of how these predators take down and kill, often eating alive, their prey. We have also seen videos and photographs that document coyotes and wolves chasing down their prey. How long could a moose, weakened by normal winter strains and tick infestation, last in trying to run away from a predator attack? Not long I’m afraid. Would the moose have survived if the predator wasn’t there? There’s no way of knowing the answer to that question.

Which brings us once again back to the same point about predators. It seems that when all things within our forests are going well, little concern is given to predators and the effects they have on our game animals. When things get skewed, those populations of predators loom large over the forests and can raise some serious cane even to a point of prohibiting the rebuilding of a herd of deer or moose, in this case a herd that might be suffering some from these blasted ticks.

So, what do we do about the ticks? What can we do? In one report a gentleman suggested some kind of spraying program to kill the ticks but I’m not sure how feasible that is or if that’s something we want to pour onto our landscapes. We can’t control the weather but we can control the predators. But, is that the answer either to this exact equation?

In George Smith’s blog post yesterday, he explained that one Dr. Anthony who attended a recent information session on Maine’s moose, suggested that instead of trying to limit hunting permits for moose to protect them due to increased mortality from ticks, that killing more of the moose might be the better solution.

I’ll leave you with some questions. Feel free to chime in below in the comments section with some answers.

1. According to George Smith’s blog post I referenced above, in 2007 the estimated moose population of Maine was 45,000. Now Lee Kantar, Maine’s head deer and moose biologist claims there are 75,000 or more. Are there now too many moose in Maine which is exacerbating the tick problem?

2. If so, do we kill more moose during the moose hunt? Or do we protect more moose?

3. George Smith states that the new moose counts are, “more credible than any previous estimates”. He offers no substantive proof of his claim. Do you think the new counts are more “credible” or accurate than previous and why?

Who would have thought 35 years ago Maine would be asking if the state had too many moose?

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Wolf Hybrids Impersonating Wolves

The below video is an example of the hybrid wild canines being found all over Europe and being passed off as real wolves. These same hybrids are being protected, even to the point of serious criminal charges being levied against hunters who shot and killed one of these.

Note the coloring, pointed ears, convexly curved forehead, elongated and narrow snout, short legs, short body, and up-curved tail.

In addition, when an educated person considers the diseases these animals carry, specifically Echinococcus granulosus, note that aside from a few people wearing rubber gloves, very little care is taken to prevent the spread of potentially hazardous tapeworm eggs. I.E. the animal was examined in the mouth, on site, without gloves; lifting the animal and making contact with regular clothing; placing of the carcass into a plastic bag again taking little care; tossing into the back of a vehicle presumably used everyday by government officials; and even once to the laboratory, little care is taken.

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Wild Dogs in Australia Spread 35 Diseases Including Echinococcus Granulosus

In Australia, the wild dog is called the dingo, wild dog, dingo-dog hybrid or canis lupus familiaris. In short, they are a pest, destructive and carry disease, as can be discovered by visiting the Department of Environment and Primary Industries website.

In addition, it should be noted that there is an out of control amount of interbreeding/crossbreeding of canines going on here, which is presenting a serious problem.

“Wild dogs can have significant impacts on farming communities. They also have the potential to impact human health. All dogs can carry a parasite called the hydatid tapeworm (Echinococcus granulosus), which has the potential to cause fatality in humans.

Another potential risk of wild dog populations is rabies. Although rabies is not found in Australia, canids would be the most important vector of this disease if introduced to Australia.”

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ESA and Hybridization: Dealing With It Case By Case

hybridwolfThe issue of wolves, the Endangered Species Act and “intercrosses”, i.e. cross breeding or hybridization, seems to have moved to the forefront in discussions about wolves. Before even getting to any discussion about what constitutes a hybridized wolf and how this is dealt with in the administering of the Endangered Species Act (ESA), consider some of the fallout and collateral damage protecting “intercrosses” can result in.

First, and probably foremost is the issue of actually protecting the purity of a species. As much as some have little or no use for the wolf, in parts of the world I believe a “pure” wolf and certain “pure” subspecies of wolves can be found (although I, personally, place little value in the notion of subspecies as it pertains to wild dogs). Is it therefore of importance to protect that species? Surely, although I recognize some might disagree. And also, to what degree and worthy effort is this protection to be carried out before it blows back in our faces as promoting further destruction of a species?

The question then becomes how do we protect a “pure” wolf species? Short of creating as much isolation from all other canines, wild and domestic, I’m not so inclined to think it honestly can be completely protected, at least not in some geographical locals, and that’s part of the problem that exists today. Attempting to force wild, and “pure,” wolves into heavily populated regions aren’t we begging for hybridization between wolves and feral and domestic dogs?

Secondly, we have learned that canines carry and transmit as many as 50 or more different kinds of diseases. In understanding the habits of wolves, we know that wolves travel great distances, sometimes extraordinary distances. With wolf populations being allowed to flourish, does this not force more wolves to disperse? Is not this flourishing also creating a situation in which wolves will find need to eat livestock, pets and basically hang out in people’s back yards? Isn’t this dispersal creating a better chance of perpetuating no fewer than two conditions: spreading of diseases into greater geographical regions and increasing the chances of “intercrosses?

Third, what then is becoming of the very institution of wildlife science and scholarship where it is known that protected species are interbreeding with other non protected species, and willingly this institution watches as the very species they claim to want to protect is being destroyed?

Fourth, of what value then, can be placed on the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (with amendments)? It’s no secret what the purposes and plans of the ESA are:

(b) PURPOSES.—The purposes of this Act are to provide a means whereby the ecosystems upon which endangered species and threatened species depend may be conserved, to provide a program for the conservation of such endangered species and threatened species, and to take such steps as may be appropriate to achieve the purposes of the treaties and conventions set forth in subsection (a) of this section.

Is there mention here of protecting hybridized species? As a matter of fact there is no discussion or regulations in the ESA having anything to do with “intercrosses” of wolves. So, how do we stop this, or do we?

In email conversations over the past several days, I read comments from others far more expertise in these affairs than I am, repeating that the ESA does not protect mongrel species. I wanted to know where in the ESA it says that or by which Section of the Act one can interpret that is what it means?

Thanks to the help of Ted B. Lyon of Ted B. Lyon & Associates, P.C., and co-author of the brand new book, The Real Wolf: The Science, Politics, and Economics of Co-Existing with Wolves in Modern Times, I got some help. With the help of a law student at Indiana University Maurer School of Law, I was directed to some cases in law where it gives us perhaps a bit better understanding of how the courts, in conjunction with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, define and interpret “pure” species compared with “intercrosses” and how it is being dealt with.

As was given to me, here is a statement found in The Endangered Species Act: Static Law Meets Dynamic World by Holly Doremus

“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (“FWS”) and National Marine Fisheries Service (“NMFS,” also known as NOAA Fisheries) (together “the Services”), do not currently have a formal policy on hybrids. The Interior Solicitor’s office waffled in the early days of the ESA, first concluding that any progeny of a protected entity was itself protected, then quickly reversing course to say that the progeny of interbreeding between species or even between subspecies were flatly ineligible for federal protection [70]. That stance was withdrawn as too “rigid” in 1990 [71]. A new policy was proposed in 1996 [72], but it was never finalized. FWS now evaluates the legal consequences of hybridization on a case-by-case basis [73].”

The short of all of this appears to be that the Endangered Species Act was not drafted with the intent to protect hybridized (intercrossed) species, BUT the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service “evaluates the legal consequences of hybridization on a case-by-case basis” because they granted themselves that authority to do so. And, we are squarely back to ground zero; the courts show deference to the Secretary and Congress gives the Secretary authoritative flexibility.

What does that then mean? That’s a good question. To me it means that if the USFWS has an agenda, aside from it’s written mission (Gasp!), and for political reasons, it can, on a case-by-case basis do whatever they want while running the risk of lawsuits from friends, what then is the rule of law worth? Realistically, the only lawsuits USFWS usually face come from animal rights and environmental groups. All too often, all of these groups work in unison with the same political (and financial) agendas.

In The Real Wolf book, an entire chapter covers the hybridization of captive wolves before and after Mexican wolves were introduced into the Southwest. This must be one of those case-by-case examples the USFWS says they will make determinations about. The information and facts presented are a clear and well-defined example of the United States Government spending millions of taxpayer dollars to protect a Heinz-57 mutt in the desert Southwest.

From my vantage point I see at least two seriously flawed examples here of what is wrong with the Endangered Species Act. One, that the Secretary has the authority, and that authority flexes its muscle knowing the Courts grant deference (and environmentalists, et. al., can cherry-pick the courts they want for the judges they will get). Secondly, the Secretary can bastardize the actual purpose of the ESA by playing games with intercrosses on a “case-by-case basis,” i.e. politics and agendas.

But the flaws date back to the very beginning of the ESA. With little or no definitions, establishment of actual authority and provisions to easily craft changes to the act based on the rapidly changing environments we live in, we can only expect the ESA to fail in protecting species and become a political tool of benefit for those who can see financial gains and abuse to promote causes. Can you say OUTDATED? I know you can.

Wolves were and never have been threatened “throughout a significant portion of its range.” Wolves and human populations cannot coexist. This has been proven over and over again. In addition to the threats these animals cause to humans, intercrosses are inevitable and are a threat to the protection of the pure wolf species. Why is that not being considered here? Or is it really NOT about the wolf?

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Sweden’s Problems With Reintroduced Wolves

From Yahoo! News:

“When you know a wolf can turn up on your land anytime, it changes your whole quality of life. You don’t dare let your dogs out in the yard … and people say you need to take a rifle when you walk in the forest!”

There are few differences between Sweden and the USA when it comes to problems with wolves. Sweden, no longer a sovereign state (some may live in denial over that), really has no say over the disease-ridden wolves raising hell in that country. The USA, no longer a sovereign state (many still live in denial of the fact), and the individual states that make up what was once a sovereign union, have no say over what becomes of wolves. All are forced by totalitarian communists to have their right of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness snatched from them over the evil dictates of world rulers and powers, all of which we never see, hear and certainly do not elect.

As with news article after news article, this one from Yahoo! News fails miserably to even mention the human-threatening disease these government-sponsored terrorist wolves carry and disperse on the landscape. Just like when some lying, thieving, corrupt person says, “If you like your healthcare plan, you can keep it…..PERIOD,” so too do we hear the same lying, thieving, corrupt people say these diseases are of no harm to humans.

Well, we know how Obamacare is turning out. You want to wait to get diseased before you do something about it?

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Emergence of Sylvatic Echinococcus granulosus as a Parasitic Zoonosis of Public Health Concern in an Indigenous Community in Canada

Within a remote Canadian Indigenous community, at least 11* of people had antibodies against Echinococcus granulosus and E. granulosus eggs were detected in 6* of environmentally collected canine fecal samples. Dog ownership, hunting, and trapping were not risk factors for seropositivity, suggesting that people are most likely exposed to E. granulosus through indirect contact with dog feces in the environment. In this situation, human exposure could be most effectively curtailed by preventing consumption of cervid viscera by free-roaming dogs.<<<Read More>>>

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Echinococcus multilocularis in Urban Coyotes, Alberta, Canada

From the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention:

Abstract

Echinococcus multilocularis is a zoonotic parasite in wild canids. We determined its frequency in urban coyotes (Canis latrans) in Alberta, Canada. We detected E. multilocularis in 23 of 91 coyotes in this region. This parasite is a public health concern throughout the Northern Hemisphere, partly because of increased urbanization of wild canids.<<<Read More>>>

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Spain Dealing With Attacking Wolves, Threat Exists for Disease

What may not be getting to these people is the information and education of the great risk they may have from diseases spread readily by wild canines. With so many accounts of so many wolves near people’s homes and along the highway, diseases such as Echinococcus granulosus threaten the health of all people. Wolves infected with the tapeworm, will leave dangerous spores in their feces. People in the outdoors and in particular domestic dogs and other animals can easily get these eggs on their fur and transport them into the homes where children and adults can easily ingest them.

Wolves attacking livestock, human beings and destroying wild animals and game, is a completely different subject than dealing with the disease aspect of wolves.

Wolves in Avila, Spain attack calf in broad daylight beside the highway.

Original Spanish edition:

“Just listen to the roars of the animal, the two men ran across the road. But despite arriving in a few minutes, allowing them to see in person the wolf, and could do nothing to save the calf, which had been attacked by the hindquarters.”

English Translation edition:

Sheep attack and kill 11 sheep in Las Navas del Marqués, in the place El Saltillo, Spain. This is the 15th attack in 3 months.

Original Spanish edition:

“The Young Farmers Agricultural Association (Asaja) Avila has denounced a new wolf attack in the town of Las Navas del Marqués, in the place El Saltillo, which caused early Thursday in the deaths of eleven sheep and caused numerous abortions in the flock.”

English Translation edition:

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Human Echinococcosis Mortality in the United States, 1990–2007

We identified 41 echinococcosis-related deaths among US residents during the period 1990–2007 (Table 1). Age-adjusted mortality rates were higher in males (0.012 per 106) than in females (0.005 per 106), with males more than 2 times as likely to die from echinococcosis than were females (adjusted rate ratio = 2.2, 95% CI 1.3–3.9).

Although these data are population based and contain large numbers of observations, death certificates likely underreport causes of death and may contain errors, which have been attributed to a variety of factors.

Fatal echinococcosis may be more common in the United States than currently appreciated. Echinococcosis causes a mortality burden in the United States that may be modified by increased prevention and control efforts, including vaccine development for adult cestode carriers and livestock [13]. Given the presence of echinococcosis mortality in US-born persons, and the risk of travel-related exposure, hygiene precautions should be advised for individuals traveling to Echinococcus species endemic areas. Clinicians should be aware of the diagnosis, particularly in foreign-born patients from Echinococcus endemic areas, and should consider tropical infectious disease consultation early.<<<Read More>>>

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