May 27, 2019

An Open Letter To President Donald Trump

*Editor’s Note* – The views expressed in the accompanied “Open Letter” may not totally express the opinions of this editor. Thank you.

Dear President Trump;
 
There are millions of us in this country who truly hope that you were sincere and honest about appointing a commission to investigate Hillary and Bill Clinton, and to hold them accountable for all the injustice they have inflicted upon this country.  Those two showed their true character and total selfishness when leaving the White House – illegally taking with them priceless National Heirlooms.  They truly considered themselves the “King & Queen of America” – free to live as they saw fit, outside of the laws which govern all the rest of the country’s citizens.
Whether you follow through with that campaign promise or not, there was one extreme criminal act of fraud and theft committed under the administration of William Jefferson Clinton that truly needs to be revisited.  That was the illegal introduction of a non-native wolf subspecies into the Northern U.S. Rockies during the early to mid-1990’s – and how those invasive predators were wrongfully allowed to destroy big game populations which took a hundred years to rebuild from the near extinction levels of the 1890’s and early 1900’s.  This criminal act was committed by none other than the United States Fish and Wildlife Service – an agency whose mandated mission is supposed to be the conservation of wildlife populations.
Since the early 1900’s, America’s sportsmen have fully funded the conservation efforts which brought huntable species back from that near total loss.  Through the years, the money that hunters and fishermen have spent to purchase hunting and fishing licenses has also funded the establishment and annual operations of State Game & Fish Departments.  All of this was accomplished without burdening the average taxpayer.  It was all financed by the very sportsmen who valued a bounty of game.  Those same hunters and fishermen also strongly supported imposing excise taxes on hunting, shooting and fishing equipment to finance the improvement and expansion of healthy and suitable habitat for game and fish – under the Pittman-Robertson Act (1937) and the Dingell-Johnson Act (1950).
 
The dumping of North-Central Canadian wolves into the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem in 1995-1996 had absolutely nothing to do with restoring wolves to the region.  The native subspecies of wolf still existed in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming – and could be found in small isolated packs – supposedly protected under the Endangered Species Act of 1973.  Under pressure from radical environmental and animal rights groups, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service actually violated the Endangered Species Act when it covertly flew wolves in from Alberta, housed them inside of Yellowstone National Park, and unleashed those wolves into one of the richest wildlife regions of the United States.  
Those same wolves, and their offspring, quickly killed out the smaller endangered native wolf, and in short order began to negatively impact elk, moose, deer and other big game populations.  When game became harder for them to hunt, the larger and more aggressive Canadian wolves turned to feeding on cattle, horses and other livestock.   
Within 15 years, the Northern Yellowstone Elk Herd had been drastically reduced from around 22,000 (in 1995) to around 6,000 by 2010.  Today, that herd is down to around 3,000 animals.  That loss is directly due to never ending predation by wolves, which quickly kill out the young of the year, eliminating any chance of the herd reversing the dramatic decline.  As the wolves proliferated and began to spread rapidly, that same level of wolf predation has destroyed elk herds up and down the Northern U.S. Rocky Mountains by 80-percent – destroying along with that loss of game the hunting opportunities for the very same sportsmen who have funded real wildlife conservation.
 
What makes this crime so much more severe, is the manner in which USFWS acquired the money for funding the project – which Congress had already denied.
 
The USFWS literally embezzled the money out of the Pittman-Robertson funds, which by law were to be used exclusively for the improvement of wildlife habitat.  The agency did a great job of hiding the theft of these sportsman provided dollars until Jim Beers, a former Chief of National Wildlife Refuge Operations, blew the whistle on the stolen funds. A Congressional Hearing was convened on that robbery, but the best they could narrow it down to was that between $60- and $70-million were misappropriated by the USFWS, under the leadership of, then, Director Jamie Rappaport Clark.
USFWS had authorized the illegal use of those funds to foot the bill for a number of projects, including the introduction of non-native wolves into the American West.  Other non-approved projects, or whims, were the building of a new Regional USFWS Office in California, new vehicles for the USFWS, bonuses of up to $30,000 (including for Director Clark herself), moving expenses for USFWS employees, the purchase of “National Refuge” land for the building of a prison, and a slush fund for upper USFWS management. 
 
So, who was held accountable?  No One!
 
Today, Jamie Rappaport Clark is serving as the CEO of the animal rights group known as Defenders of Wildlife, knocking down some $300,000 a year.  Defenders of Wildlife is one of the radical environmental groups which have used the Equal Access to Justice Act to keep its coffers filled.  Collectively, this “Non-Profit Organization”, and dozens of other phony “Wildlife & Environmental” groups have milked the wolf cash cow for several billion taxpayer dollars over the past twenty years.
Another criminal in all of this would be the Northern Rockies Wolf Recovery Project coordinator, Ed Bangs.  The USFWS did its best to keep “facts and figures” hidden.  There really is no way to put a figure on just how many stolen sportsman dollars were spent to illegally bring those wolves across the International Boundary between Canada and the United States.  According to the USFWS’s own extremely strict regulations, Form No. 3-177 must be submitted in order to bring any live wildlife or fish species into this country.  That form identifies the exact subspecies being imported…the exact number being brought across the border…and the exact cost of the shipment.  Those are all “exact” things that USFWS apparently did not want the American public to know.  Bangs failed to ever file that “mandatory” form.  Other than Ed Bangs himself, no one likely knows the exact cost of paying Alberta trappers to live trap those wolves…or exactly how many shipments were actually made…or the exact number of Canadian wolves that were literally dumped into Montana, Wyoming and Idaho.
 
Further tainting those transplants has been speculation that many of the so-called “wolves” that project leader Bangs did bring into the U.S. were actually wolf-sled dog hybrid crosses.  Bangs has been quoted saying, “If it looks like a wolf…and can live in the wild…and reproduce…then I consider it a wolf.”  That’s just another violation of the Endangered Species Act.
Please keep in mind, all of this began under the Bill Clinton administration.  Along the way there have been many accusations of U.S. Senators and Representatives being paid off…of Federal Judges accepting under the table money…or Governors receiving incentive to “Look The Other Way”.  Both Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks and the Idaho Department of Fish and Game have long allowed the destruction of big game populations to continue far too long…not to have had some of those millions of dirty dollar thrown their way.  Who knows, Bill Clinton himself might have pocketed a few million dollars.
 
The Northern Rockies Wolf Recovery Project has been the dirtiest and darkest chapter in wildlife conservation in this country.  Under the Obama administration very little was done to clean up this mess, or to hold guilty individuals and the less than genuine organizations responsible.  But, that’s understandable.  All of this has nothing to do with “wolf conservation” … but rather everything to do about the United Nations’ goal of pushing people off the land and into the cities – Agenda 21. 
You know as well as I do, that Obama’s run for the presidency was totally orchestrated and largely paid for by George Soros, and his billionaire friends.  Soros and others within the crowd he tends to associate with are the largest supporters of the United Nations – and its futuristic goals of drastically reducing the human population of Planet Earth…centralizing human settlements…and returning a vast majority of this planet to wilderness areas where predators rule and keep wildlife populations in check.
 
Obama has been a part of that same idiotic ideology, explaining his real reason for pushing so hard for gun control, and supporting the U.N. Small Arms Treaty.  As long as we have the right to “Keep and Bear Arms” in this country, the U.N.’s pipe dream is just that.
 
Mr. President, if you honestly want to go down in the history of this country as being one of the “Greatest Presidents” of the United States, begin by fully investigating the corruption, lies, deceit, collusion and theft surrounding the forced Northern Rockies Wolf Recovery Project, and similar wolf projects in the Northern Midwest…in the Southwest…and along the Eastern Seaboard.  Hold those responsible fully accountable, and return the feeling to Americans that we do indeed live in “The Land of The Free”. 
 
Ryan Zinke is the right man for Secretary of the Interior … and Jim Beers, the 32 year veteran of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, who blew the whistle on the theft of Pittman-Robertson Funds for financing the destructive wolf projects, is the man to clean up that filthy federal agency.
 
Respectfully Yours,
Toby Bridges,
Lobo Watch 2
Missoula, Montana
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Wolf Rookies and Disregard of Global Wolf History Re: Wolf Introduction

FraudScienceOne of the complaints I have always had about gray wolf (re)introduction has been the fact that claims of using “best available science” was a sham and a deliberate con job right from the very beginning. For Best Available Science to be a viable tool, then science must be the driving factor. Science is science and it doesn’t work at all when personal agendas and politics are the driving forces behind such events as wolf (re)introduction.

I have stated before that it is easy to look back on what took place in order to learn going into the future. In so doing, researching has discovered many things about wolf (re)introduction; very little that was claimed and predicted has come true, those involved were inexperienced “rookies” and some very serious and important information was completely disregarded about wolf history globally and the dangers to public health from diseases, worms and parasites carried by wolves.

In a recent article on this website, I wrote about how, in my findings of researching the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS), deliberate lying and misinformation was given to the public in order to influence public opinion that would support wolf (re)introduction. One has to wonder what the outcome of pre-introduction polls would have been if people had been told the truth.

One blaring example I gave was that everywhere Ed Bangs and his band of wolf marauders went that sold the public on what I believe was an intentionally misleading claim that within the three regions where the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) wanted wolf populations when 10 breeding pairs or 100~ wolves were confirmed for 3 consecutive years, wolves would be removed from Endangered Species Act (ESA) protection and management of wolves turned over to the states. That, as we all now know, not only never happened but it never happened so badly that over protected wolves have destroyed far too much.

The other aspect I want to cover is the terrible disregard of valuable information and the fact that there was no experienced scientists available or made available in dealing with wolves, especially wolves being dumped into areas adjacent to human-settled landscapes. Those pushing to get the wolves were only guessing what wolves would do based on models from watching wolves in cages or in remote areas of Canada or Alaska. These same people refused to use any kind of historic documents about wolves claiming it was mostly fairy tales and folk lore. What puzzles me is that it is ONLY that information that is available to United States scientists who refuse to accept with or work with people and scientists in foreign countries who have dealt with wolves for centuries. Perhaps our elitist attitudes and desire to not use historic knowledge of wolves and wolf interactions with humans, for an agenda of getting wolves in this country, has cost the American people substantially.

To go back and review the FEIS and all associated documents is quite an eye-opening experience. Looking at this issue of “best available science” and what appears a deliberate disregard at the utilization of the best science and historic documents that were available at the time of wolf (re)introduction, we see disturbing claims that should have been troubling at the time.

On page 54 of Chapter 4 – FEIS – Consultation and coordination, we find this statement:

Research
– Obtaining information through scientific techniques has lead to tremendous benefits to society. Wildlife management has been greatly improved through scientific investigations and research, including the use of radio telemetry technology. Any reintroduction of wolves would be closely monitored and new information used to improve the program. However, wolves have been intensively studied in many areas of North America and many of the basic questions about wolf biology and behavior are well documented. Currently, another massive research program is not needed to re-study the basic nature of wolves in the western United States. While there will certainly be some interesting and necessary questions that may arise from the actual reintroduction of a top predator into an ecosystem, more research or study is certainly not required before wolf restoration could proceed. The number and level of “predictive” models and studies conducted to date have fully exhausted the ability to predict what effects wolves may have on the ecosystem in Yellowstone and central Idaho without wolves actually being present. Additional studies appear unnecessary and would only serve to increase overall costs and delay real progress toward wolf recovery and delisting.
(emphasis added)

Did our scientific community fail this badly? When you honestly consider that very little predicted in the FEIS about wolves, their behavior and impacts that a recovered wolf population would have on the ecosystem and that of humans, materialized, can we look back on this event and not question what was behind wolf (re)introduction?

To claim just prior to wolf (re)introduction that Ed Bangs and his cohorts knew all there was to know about wolves, that they had “fully exhausted” everything that they could use to predict what was going to happen and then find the results we did, one has to view this as perhaps an agenda-driven, politically motivate event, designed to specifically deceive the American people. Or perhaps it is even something more sinister and/or criminal.

USFWS refused to examine or at least consider historic documents of wolf history that contain years and years of conflicts between humans and livestock, as well as wildlife impacts due to wolves. Their refusal was evidently based on some elitist notion that this history could not be substantiated and the most of it was lore and made up stories. Is this how we treat history? Will one hundred years from now, people look back at wolf (re)introduction and disregard it for many of the same reason this generation of fraudulent scientists did?

Nobody involved in wolf (re)introduction had any kind of real experience and first hand knowledge of what it would be like living, as humans, with wolves. It’s not their fault. Wolves were mostly gotten rid of before any of these people were born. But, there are history books and there are and were at that time, many countries who were living with and dealing with wolves. Did we then disregard their knowledge and if so why? Did our scientists NOT want to learn the truth because they had an agenda?

Watching some wolves in a cage or documenting their behavior in remote forests and then creating “models” to GUESS what wolves will do, is not best available science and wolf (re)introduction should never have been allowed to happen. With zero actual knowledge and experience, and confirmation that wolves were recovering naturally in Northwest Montana and parts of Idaho, we should have left it alone and continued to learn first hand about wolves.

Here’s some more examples found in the FEIS that should have sent up red flares:

FEIS – Chapter 4, Consultation and Coordination – page 22:

6. The Jackson moose population is discussed in Chapter 3, The Affected Environment, and average harvest is presented in Table 3-12. The analysis of wolf predation effects on the Jackson moose population is discussed in Chapter 4, Environmental Consequences, and cited in Boyce and Gaillard’s (1992) modeling of wolf predation on ungulates including the Jackson moose herd. Their models suggest a recovered wolf population may decrease the moose population about 7%.(emphasis added)

And this:

10. The analysis presented in Chapter 4 showed the effects a recovered wolf population would have on various ungulate populations throughout the primary analysis area. Additional ungulate herds or larger ungulate populations added to the analysis means more ungulates available to wolves and subsequent reduced effects of wolves on those ungulate populations. As stated in the analysis, the FWS recognizes ungulate populations can be quite different from one another in terms of population numbers, hunter harvests, and other physical and biological characteristics. Additionally, the FWS cannot predict exactly where wolf packs may establish territories, thus wolves will not impact all ungulate herds in the primary analysis area. However, the analyses and ranges of impacts presented would apply to most ungulate herds if wolves were associated with them.(emphasis added)

And these two items:

13. From the information available, nearly all elk, deer, and a few moose populations inhabiting areas in or near the Yellowstone National Park have population numbers in excess of several thousand. Also, harvests in many Wyoming herd units averaged hundreds of antlerless animals for elk and deer herds east and south of the park. For the herds having large antlerless harvests, reducing the antlerless harvest might be possible if wolf predation reduced ungulate numbers below objective levels. It is possible wolves could keep very small moose populations at low numbers in combination with severe winters, human harvest, and other factors (i.e., the predator pit theory) and affected the antlered harvest, but moose tend to be more difficult to kill than elk or deer and for areas east of the park, moose will not likely be a primary prey species compared to the more numerous elk and deer populations. Elk and deer because of their relative abundance will probably be the primary prey.

14. The primary analysis area was limited to places where wolves would most likely inhabit and to those ungulates wolves would most likely have impacts on at recovery levels. The FWS cannot predict exactly where wolves might set up territories. However, based on the population sizes of the ungulate herds near Dubois, if 1 pack of wolves lived in this area, it is unlikely the effects would be greater than demonstrated for other herds in the analyses presented. Indeed, with more ungulates available for wolves to prey on, overall impacts to some herds (and to associated hunter harvest) might be less than predicted. Overall impacts would be less because significantly more animals would be available and the impacts would be spread among more herds. The FWS also recognized wolf predation might severely impact some ungulate herds because of increased vulnerability (i.e., Whiskey Mountain sheep herd) and that wolf presence might inhibit the states and tribes from meeting their wildlife management objectives. The FWS believes the states and tribes are better able to determine those rare instances where wolves might severely impact wildlife populations and the FWS will work closely with those agencies in developing plans that promote wolf recovery and provide flexible management options when state and tribal objectives are being compromised.(emphasis added)

If, as the USFWS claims above, that they have “intensively studied” and that all wolf behavior is “well documented” and that “predictive models” have been “fully exhausted,” then why all the waffling in these last statements about how they can’t predict this about wolves and that about wolves? In these same claims, officials said, in effect, they knew all there was to know about wolf behavior and yet history has shown us the huge failure. This has to be a gigantic failure of science or a criminal act to deliberately mislead the people to promote an agenda to play with wolves.

It is just as disturbing to look at this evidence about poor science and deliberate disregard of facts, as it is this one statement contained in the quotes above: “The number and level of “predictive” models and studies conducted to date have fully exhausted the ability to predict what effects wolves may have on the ecosystem in Yellowstone and central Idaho without wolves actually being present. Additional studies appear unnecessary and would only serve to increase overall costs and delay real progress toward wolf recovery and delisting.”

This tells me that Ed Bangs and his gang of thieves were no longer, or probably never were, interested in knowing anything more about wolves, as it might spoil their party. They didn’t care. They didn’t care about wolf impacts on humans. They didn’t care about wolf impacts on game herds. They didn’t care about disease. They didn’t care about wolves in Russia, or Finland, Norway, Germany, India or anywhere else in the world. They want wolves to play with in Yellowstone and Idaho and they didn’t much care how they got them there. They admitted they couldn’t predict what was going to happen until they put wolves in there to find out. They called it “real progress.” And that is what they call “best available science?”

Among many terrible things this wolf (re)introduction has caused, it’s a travesty on the science community. This effort has done more to create complete distrust of government officials and the administering of the Endangered Species Act. One can only wonder, knowing and discovering the shameful acts and actions involved with wolf (re)introduction, what other ESA projects are as anti science and crooked as wolf (re)introduction?

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Does Future of Wolves Hinge On Public Perceptions?

It is my opinion, and one that can be easily propped up with existing evidence and results, that the reintroduction or introduction of wolves, depending on your perspective, was nothing more than a typical government bureaucratic, overreach and abuse of power. But that’s commonplace, is it not?

It matters not to which side, if there really are sides, you may come down on in the “Wolf Wars”, it is all too often an emotional, irrational debate among people (and in some cases the term “people” here is used freely). Why is it emotional? If I were to define the two sides in basic terms, on one side we have those who love wolves, believe wolves have rights, believe wolves are necessary for the ecosystem, that wolves should be left alone and that man should be destroyed for interfering with wolves, among other bits of nonsense. On the other side the call is there for wolves to be controlled, that all wolves should be killed, that people need to be able to protect themselves, family and property, etc. Regardless of the definitions of each side, the reality is that it becomes an emotional issue because people are involved and in some cases that involvement is very personal. I know of nobody who will argue that this issue of wolves and wolf reintroduction is not an emotional mess.

Why then, was this aspect of wolf reintroduction not even considered in the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the reintroduction of wolves?

Go look at the EIS. Or better yet, go read it if you would like to gain an understanding about what a useless government document is and how hours and millions of dollars later the entire aspect of wolf reintroduction is a flaming disaster, as far as public perceptions go. The design of the EIS and the reality of what has transpired since, is a clear indication that somebody intended to reintroduce wolves regardless of any concerns or what might happen in the future.

On page viii of the EIS, in part it states:

Fifteen issues and impacts were not evaluated further in the FEIS because they were not
significant
to the decision being made
* Wolves not native to Yellowstone
National Park
* Wolf rights
* Federal “subsidies”
* Human safety and health
* Other predators and scavengers
* Endangered species
* Plants, invertebrates, fish, reptiles,
amphibians, birds, and mammals
* Diseases and parasites
* Private property rights
* Wolf recovery in other areas
* Existing wolves in central Idaho
and Yellowstone
* Existing wolves in northwestern
Montana
* Wolf subspecies
* Wolf and dog and coyote
hybridization
* Need for research (I took the liberty to embolden those “not significant” issues that I know directly impact the people.)

Isn’t this a clear example of how the government, i.e. the environmentalists because they run the government, doesn’t give two rat’s behinds about what the hell happens to the people or their property rights. They are going to do just as they please regardless of how you or I feel. How can many of those 15 items not be considered as significant. One would have to be either brain dead or a crook to think otherwise.

Two of the more prolific wolf “experts” are L. David Mech and Ed Bangs. Mech has studied wolves since before Columbus and Bangs was the wolf reintroduction coordinator for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS).

Both men readily acknowledge that public perception played an integral role in wolf introduction and recovery and will play a significant role in the future of the gray wolf and yet both express that their interests are with the wolf far and above any concerns about the people. Mech even indicates that lying about everything wolf, justifies the end when it comes to selling wolves.

The above labels have been very useful in many circumstance and have contributed significantly to wolf recovery. They may still be useful in the future, but we should be aware that they are shortcuts to “sell a product” rather than good scientific grounds on which to build conservation.

The labels Mech is referring to above are those given to wolves in order to better give the public a positive perception of wolves, while deliberately misleading. Lying to the public about a vicious and disease-ridden predator that few have much use for: “flagship species”, “umbrella species”, “indicator species”, “keystone species”, for the sole purpose of “sell a product”, i.e. wolves, to the public. How crooked can anyone get?

Mech has also said that the only thing allowing hunting of wolves provides is a greater tolerance for the animal. He states that hunting wolves will have no direct affect but indirectly it changes public perceptions.

Ed Bangs, wolf coordinator for the USFWS, shows little concern for the people either. Isn’t it just about his wolf?

Wolves and wolf management have nothing to do with wolves,” says Ed Bangs, Northern Rockies Wolf Recovery Coordinator for the US Fish and Wildlife Service. “I think the folks who didn’t like them still don’t like them, and the folks who did like them still do. Wolves are mainly a symbolic issue that relates to core human values.

Or perhaps Bangs shows his love of the wolf and disdain for the human species more precisely when in a comment he made to a person who had just lost their dog to a wolf killing. His comment was, “What’s the big deal? It’s only a damn dog.” Many feel the same way about his damned dogs too.

When nearly every aspect of wolf reintroduction and the continued promotion of wolves directly involves many, if not all, humans, then why did the USFWS opt to not even include public safety and property rights in the Final Environmental Impact Statement?

Historically wolves were nearly extirpated from the lower 48 states because people were intolerant of the nasty dog. Rightly so, the future of gray wolves in this country is going to depend upon how much patience the people are going to have when it comes to public safety, private property, disease and effects on other wildlife, including game animals.

For those in positions of authority, then, to knowingly piss off the citizens and/or trample on their rights when it comes to dealing with the wild dogs, leaves one to conclude that one of two things exist….or perhaps both at the same time.

First, is that the citizenry is dealing with a government agency and as a government agency they believe they have the power to do just as they damned well please and to hell with the serf taxpayers. And secondly, those individuals and organizations are too stupid to know or care. They are driven by personal agendas and feel threatened or eagerly and willingly kowtow to the environmentalists who are always demanding and taking and never giving.

In a recent display of either government abuse or ignorance, the Washington State fish and game people set out traps in an area near Twisp, Washington. The traps were located on Forestry Service lands adjacent to private property. The purpose of the traps was to capture wolves, radio collar them and release them for study. Two pet dogs ended up in the traps.

Out of shear ignorance and stupidity, wildlife officials set these traps within short distances of the residents without notifying anyone living nearby. Officials did place signs along the road(s) leading into the area.

Residents became incensed that wildlife officials would set out traps next to private residents and not personally contact them about their plans and intentions.

If the future of the survival of gray wolves in this country is hinging on public perceptions, what good is becoming of this kind of treatment by government officials of citizens? Is it ignorance? Is it just plain stupidity? Perhaps it’s terrible leadership that non thinking employees can’t make good decisions? Or maybe it’s the usual governmental arrogance that nobody can or will touch them and ruffle their bimonthly paychecks or disrupt their retirement pensions. This is government out of control.

This sort of behavior is not relegated to only the state of Washington. This kind of attitude exists nationwide, I dare say within every fish and game department in this country.

Read what Ed Bangs says in his explanation as to why wolves were finally reintroduced into the Northern Rockies:

I think the only reason wolf reintroduction finally happened was that people with different values moved to Montana and diluted the strong agricultural influence. Plus, the economy changed from straight agriculture and natural resource consumption to areas such as tourism. …I think in time the debate will get less shrill because living with ‘real’ wolves does moderate the strong and highly polarized, all-bad or all-good opinions.

What a crock and a belly full of arrogance! This is absolute BS design to “sell a product”, i.e wolves, to the American public. The reason wolf reintroduction happened was because Bangs and Neimeyer just took it upon themselves to do it. They used their governmental power and force field to say to hell with the people. They wanted wolves and so they went and got them.

It was my perception from reading Carter Neimeyer’s book, “Wolfer”, that one day Neimeyer just up and decided he was going to Canada to trap and import wolves and Ed Bangs could join him if he wanted. Perhaps this is one reason no permits to import wolves was ever obtained.

The “strong and highly polarized” opinions or perceptions of people will not change, so long as everything is said and done to ensure the people aren’t cared for and the wolves are. With actions like those in Washington State and elsewhere, who can have a good opinion of government wildlife biologists and employees when consideration for the people, ironically who pay their wages, is far at the bottom of the totem pole.

Over the coming years, expect little to improve and mostly get worse.

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DNA Studies – Smaller Native Wolves Existed in Northern Rockies before Canadian Wolf Transplant

By George Dovel (Republished with Permission)

In the Jan-Mar 2008 Outdoorsman Bulletin No. 26, the lead articled titled, “What They Didn’t Tell You about Wolf Recovery,” described the ongoing deception by federal and state biologists in their scheme to fill rural areas in the lower 48 states with wolves.

The article referred to 20 years of Dept. of Interior Solicitors (lawyers) changing the number of N. American wolf subspecies covered in the Endangered Species Act from 24, finally to two and back to four – and then to any or all wolves called “gray wolves” or “Canis lupus”. Then it told how FWS reclassified ESA-listed wolves as members of two “Distinct Population Segments”, which it later changed to three until a federal judge denounced the obvious attempt to circumvent the ESA.

The ongoing debate between wildlife scientists who classify species, concerns whether subspecies of elk (red deer), North American bison, grey wolves, etc., exist. Bona fide expert taxonomists include Dr. Valerius Geist who points out that changes in location, habitat, size and appearance alone do not necessarily change the genetic make-up to qualify an animal as a separate sub-specie.

However the Northern Rocky Mountains wolf subspecies – C. l. Irremotus – was documented by physical comparisons of skulls, etc., from larger wolves in 1959:

Page 2 of the 146-page FWS Northern Rocky Mountain Wolf Recovery Plan dated August 3, 1987, contains the map showing the historical distribution of Canis lupus Irremotus in the lower 48 states, plus the 1987 distribution in black. It depicts immigration of Irremotus from southern British Columbia into Idaho and from B.C. or southern Alberta into the northwest corner of Montana.

It also shows the two 1987 Irremotus population areas in central Idaho, one of which included the three wolf pack territories mapped by Tim Kimmery between 1988 and 1991 (see Outdoorsman Bulletin No. 35).

Historical Impact on Wolf Subspecies

During the most recent (Pleistocene) ice age, water evaporating from the oceans became part of the glacial ice covering the land. Ocean levels dropped 300 feet or more and the Bering Strait between Siberia and Alaska dried up.
The exposed land bridge with little snow, later named Beringia, became a refuge for hardy Siberian animals and plants for several thousand years (see below).

Many scientists believe Beringia included a small human population from Siberia that was prevented from continuing into North America for 5,000 years by the North American ice sheets. Geologists report these continental ice sheets were 5,000-10,000 feet in depth and extended south in some places to the 40th Parallel below what is now the U.S.-Canadian border.

The artists’ three views of Beringia published by “Wikipedia” illustrate the changes that have occurred in the “Bering Land Bridge” during the last 18,000 years. But there is still disagreement among biologists about when, where and how several current mammal species first arrived on the North American Continent.

Subspecies Had Limited Opportunity to Crossbreed

Since 1995 a number of wildlife biologists have accepted the determination by Nowak that five subspecies of gray wolf (Canus lupus) inhabited North America during the early 20th Century. There is also agreement that Canis lupus occidentalis (the large gray wolf transplanted to Yellowstone and Central Idaho by FWS in 1995) had virtually no opportunity to influence the genetic make-up of coastal wolves in SE Alaska and Yukon and portions of five other Canadian Provinces where it existed.

For thousands of years the ice between interior Alaska, Yukon and British Columbia and the coastal area prevented the occidentalis wolves from mixing with the smaller wolves defined as C. lupis ligoni by Goldman in 1944. And the intensive efforts to kill all wolves in the early 1900s also left few of the large wolves alive in most areas where they might have mixed with the native wolves.

The map below in the study titled, “Legacy Lost: genetic variability and population size of extirpated U.S. gray wolves (Canis lupis),” published by Leonard et al in the 2005 Vol. 14 issue of Molecular Ecology, shows the five primary subspecies that existed in the early 1900s. The bold black line indicates the northern limit of gray wolf eradication that occurred in the 48 contiguous United States and Canada.

In 1995, C.l. nubilus, the primary subspecies common in the U.S. and Canada mainland included ligoni from the west coast of Canada, irremotus from the Northern Rocky Mountains and labradorius from Labrador. The “a” to “z” letters scattered on the map represent original locations of the various museum specimens whose DNA were recorded in the study.

A similar study titled, “Phylogeography of wolves (Canis lupus) in the Pacific Northwest”, by Weckworth et al (published in the 2010 (2) issue of the Journal of Mammology) used basically the same map, along with an expanded inset to illustrate locations of testing for the genetic difference between the smaller coastal wolves and the 30% larger occidentalis wolves from the Alaska and Yukon interiors.

Both of these DNA studies emphasize that the nubilus wolves migrated northward to populate Canada as the ice sheets and glaciers melted. They point out that the smaller wolves existed in the south before the larger wolves migrated into northern Canada, and the Weckworth study suggests the coastal wolves should be listed as a separate individual subspecies.

Court Allows Transplants – Then Orders Removal

Readers who actively opposed the FWS option to import Canadian wolves may recall the following events:
In 1994 the Farm Bureau, Audubon Society and other plaintiffs asked the Wyoming Federal District Court to halt wolf introduction because it could not legally occur where naturally occurring wolves already existed per the 10J Rule. But instead of issuing an injunction to halt the process while the arguments were presented, Judge Downes allowed FWS to go ahead and transplant Canadian wolves into Central Idaho and Yellowstone Park for three years until he issued his ruling in December of 1997.

Then after setting aside the final wolf introduction rules as unlawful, Judge Downes ordered FWS to remove all Canadian wolves and their progeny from both experimental population areas. This ruling was met with loud criticism by the wolf activists, including the state and federal wildlife agencies who apparently believed they could get by with ignoring both state and federal laws when it suited their agenda.

Judge “Passes the Buck” to Appeals Court

They quickly pointed out that it would not be possible to even locate most of the wolves – much less capture them. But even if that were possible, both Canadian Provinces refused to allow the wolves to return and there were not enough zoos willing to accept several hundred wild wolves so killing most was the only option.

Judge Downes could have prevented this disaster from occurring by simply putting wolf introduction on hold three years earlier until his decision was reached. But the second time he did essentially the same thing by later staying execution of his removal order pending an appeals decision by the 10th Circuit Court.

On January 13, 2000, five years after the first large Canadian wolves were introduced, the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the December 1998 Wyoming District Court ruling that the reintroduction program was unlawful and should be revoked. The appeals court admitted that the evidence showed native irremotus wolves already existed when the larger Canadian wolves were introduced, but said FWS had the authority to determine what constituted a population.
The fact that the resident wolves coexisted with abundant big game populations and with negligible impact on livestock and human activity was already a matter of record in 1994. But on August 12, 1994, FWS Wolf Leader Ed Bangs sent a letter to Charles Lobdell telling him to stop issuing statements to the public advising that the number of reported resident wolves was increasing.

Bangs’ letter advised that FWS planned to introduce wolves from Canada and said: “From this day forward…confirmed wolf activity (will only include) individual wolves or members of packs that have been examined, radio-collared and monitored in the wild.” He also said he had transferred $9,000 to the FWS Boise Field Office to search for wolves and organize flights to locate any radio-collared wolves that might be in Idaho or the Yellowstone area during the summer and fall.

Bangs also included key issues to be presented to the public consistently by FWS:
“1. (I)t is likely that wolf populations would ultimately recover without reintroduction and breeding pairs of wolves would likely occur in Idaho before they would occur (in) Yellowstone.

4. Experimental populations will not knowingly contain a significant portion of the territory of any naturally occurring breeding pair that has successfully raised young. However once wolves are released all wolves in the area will be treated as experimental animals.”

Despite reported wolf sightings by more then 120 outfitters, trappers and others in less than two months, most in the same location where Kemery mapped three wolf pack areas from 1988-1991, and despite the USFS road closure to protect existing wolves (see Bulletin 35), Bangs dumped Canadian wolves halfway between the two known native wolf locations guaranteeing their extermination.

In February of 2012, I forwarded the Weckworth DNA study, without comment, to Dr. Valerius Geist. The following was his reply:

“Thank you, George, I have seen this study. To me it suggests that there was indeed a remnant of native wolves in Idaho that were finally done away with by introduced wolves from Canada. The native wolves would have been of the same clad as the coastal wolves. Anyway, that’s testable since some museum specimens of native Idaho wolves are still available for genetic analysis. However, somebody competent and trustworthy needs to do it. Cheers, Val Geist.”

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