July 22, 2019

Benevolent Wolves & Stubborn States

*Editor’s Note* – I have taken the liberty to highlight the paragraph that I think is the absolute best. It sums it all up.

By James Beers

The following is a response to two assertions about wolves in Wyoming and my recent article about the recent elk predation by wolves on 19 elk in one March night on an elk wintering ground.  These came to me from Utah by way of California.

1.)       They (i.e. wolves) only kill what they need to eat!!!!

2.)      As I understand the problem…the Feds have been after the state of Wyoming to write a “Wolf management Plan” that they can approve so management can be turned over to state F & G …..but WY refuses to take the word ‘Predator”  out and the general philosophy that:

          “WOLVES NEED KILLIN ANY TIME AND ANYPLACE”…..so the Feds won’t approve their plan,

As to Question #1; wolves by definition must kill to sustain themselves.  All sorts of things enter into what they kill and what they attempt to kill:

–       There is the difficulty of killing the prey.

–       There is the opportunity to kill the prey.

–       There is the energy-expended/calorie-reward ratio of potential prey.

–       There is the desirability of the prey (i.e. veal v. a rotting carcass).

–       There is the state of hunger of the wolf.

–       There is the need to feed young in a den.

–       There is anticipated danger from attacking certain prey.

–       There is the behavioral experience of the wolves.

–       There are the dangers associated with certain locations.

–       There is the anticipation of future food opportunities.

–       There is the physical condition of the wolf or wolves.

Wolves will kill and eat any mammal or bird at any given time.  They routinely kill and eat adult, young and unborn (evidently a preferred meal) of everything from big game and livestock to dogs and, yes, humans.  While they prefer live prey and freshly-killed meat; wolves scavenge freely when food is scarce as in winters or when pushed into unfamiliar territory.

History is full, yes full, of incidents of wolves attacking and killing joggers, hikers, shepherds, children, old ladies, soldiers, loggers (one even while operating a chain saw), Native Americans, Europeans, Russians, Christians, Moslems, etc. from Oregon to Massachusetts and Ireland to Kazakhstan and Kamchatka.  Some wolves had rabies, some were spreading Smallpox from feeding on the dying and many just dragged the carcass into nearby vegetation and ate their fill and went on.  Anyone with half an interest in history realizes that most such attacks were never reported or documented for centuries while those living with the wolves had no doubts about what was happening and accordingly invested enormous time, money and scarce resources to control and eliminate wolves from the time of Plato and before, to North American Colonists and Western Expansion settlers and ranchers.

When wolves, just like a pack of dogs running loose from some town, encounter a flock of sheep; or some deer in deep snow; or some kids at a rural bus stop; or elk near some fence or cliff; or some jogger on a lonely road running away from them; or some unfamiliar dogs; or some or a coyote; or some old lady walking to her mailbox; they quickly run down the items listed above and make a decision.  Whether we call it “fun” or “surplus killing” or a “behavioral response” is immaterial.  When the decision to chase or attack or simply to boldly investigate is made; the outcome, especially if it is a pack of wolves or a pack of dogs, is too often harmful to human life, human interests, human society and what the Founding Fathers called “domestic Tranquility” – A Primary and Stated Reason Why The States Drafted, Signed and Agreed To “this Constitution for the United States of America” that established a federal government.

Wolves and free-ranging dogs often attack flocks of sheep or llamas or a group of calves or a herd of wintering deer or a moose cow close to giving birth just like sharks attack a school of mullet or swordfish attack a school of young tuna or wintering striped bass attack a school of menhaden; that is to say they slash, bite, and stab as quickly as they can and then eat what is unable to escape or that has been made into pieces.  They do this until they are full or until they find nothing left to eat.  Wolves and dogs will do the same and when they are “done” chasing, biting, and killing they may eat some of the choicest parts like eating out a cow’s rear-end while she lives and pulling out and devouring the fetus.

Every one of you urban wolf-lovers knows this and fears it about dogs roaming free in your neighborhood as you quickly call 911 or “the Animal Warden” and demand big fines and even jail for persons that let their dog or dogs loose, or that fail to get them vaccinated or wormed or keep them leashed – YET you whinny about how wolves (wild, unvaccinated, undomesticated, big, hungry, etc.) are NOT like that!  It is so stupid it defies a sensible answer.

The most important part about this Romance Biology theorem that “They only kill what they need to eat!!!!” is that it is then inserted into Environmental Voodoo for the media as in, “A wolf only needs 1493 calories a day to sustain itself and an average cow moose weighs 857 lbs. that provides 60, 472 calories: therefore it only takes 8 moose to sustain 2,376 wolves so don’t believe this stuff about wolves having to kill livestock or elk or deer or dogs or certainly not humans when only a few big game animals lost are of no concern except to a few greedy and selfish hunters.” Just like it takes a whole lot more mullet and menhaden to sustain those sharks and swordfish and striped bass than what they eat and just like all those urban mothers fear dogs harming or attacking children; the ideas that wolves ”never” attack people, and that wolves have some magical brain brake that tells them to stop when they have killed, “what they need to eat!!!!”, and that wolves should stick around a carcass (a dangerous thing to do) until it is “all cleaned up” despite preferring fresh meat: these things are the “issue” of the marriage of Romance Biology and Environmental Voodoo ground into documentary fecal matter for the general public.

As to Question # 2; I must immediately dismiss the pejorative statement “WOLVES NEED KILLIN ANY TIME AND ANYPLACE”.  It is silly to request a serious answer when you treat those that do not agree with you like Presidential candidate Kerry applying for an Ohio Hunting License saying, “is this where I can get me one of those huntin’ licenses?”  If you are going to write “killing” I suggest you put a “g” on the end and, even though they are fictitious assertions, write ANY TIME and ANYPLACE as either one word or two words but not in two different preferences separated only by “and”.  More than a few of us advocates for local authority over what is or is not in OUR environment do not drag our knuckles as we walk nor do we have more tattoos than teeth; those are simply fund-raising ploys spread by those environmental/animal rights organizations behind much of this issue.
As to everything else in your question before the final 7 words, I agree with your statement.  It is those last 7 words, “so the Feds won’t approve their plan”, that are the crux of the problem not only in Wyoming but in virtually every Local Community in the Lower 48 States that has been forced and coerced into hosting and living with wolves and the uncounted harms they cause to those forced to live with them.  Believe it or not, many of us feel strongly that the federal (government, politicians, bureaucrats, agencies, Law – take your pick) has NO authority, right or business imposing wolves (or grizzlies or mountain lions for that matter) on ANY Community that is not willing to accept or tolerate them!

So, “so the Feds won’t approve their plan”, by what authority do “the Feds” “approve” any State’s wolf “plan”?  Wolves cause great and irresolvable harm to residents and those residents elect state and local officials with the demand that they call wolves “predators” and that they should control the numbers, densities and distribution of wolves.  They tell local officials that they want wolves kept out of their County and that any entering their County should be dispatched by ballistic vaccination or traps or snares or however.  Do citizens have this right?

Further, if the states continue taking their homework (i.e. Plans) to federal overseers for “approval” they will NEVER regain the authority and jurisdiction stolen from them by the un-Constitutional Endangered Species Act and the lawless and tyrannical bureaucratic behavior it has spawned to the great detriment of rural America.  The ESA needs either a severe rewrite or better yet complete repeal.  The ESA is a Law; that is a lesser matter than a Constitutional Amendment.  When the 18th Amendment (the Volstead Act, i.e. Prohibition) was similarly passed and then ratified as a Constitutional Amendment in a comparable orgy of do-goodism, it took only 14 years for Americans to see the corruption and death it manufactured such that they Repealed that Amendment.  The ESA is similarly creating corruption and destruction far beyond this narrow portion of its reach and should be Repealed and that sound goal is only shoved further down the road when a State like Wyoming (most others have behaved like ladies of the evening for the federal favors “getting along” brings) humbly begs federal bureaucrats to “approve” what they do or don’t do with a Resident Predator that does not belong in settled landscapes and is no more in short supply (i.e. “endangered”, “threatened” or “of special concern”) in the United States (Alaska, Montana and Minnesota were doing just fine before the ESA) than are sparrows or starlings.

Consider the irony of someone telling you that they will only let you manage (?) your (?) wolves if they “approve” what you will or will not do!  In other words your employees and your operational dollars will do what the feds tell you to do or not do or they will simply “step back in”.  Then we can all warble about how “getting along” is the Only way to go.  Otherwise you are a “what”?  There must be an “ist” or “phobe” word for anyone adhering to a Constitutional view of wolves and State’s Rights.

There is so much else swirling about these wolves than all the simplistic chatter about “only killing what they eat” and how ignorant some states are about their subservience to federal masters.  This attempted answer actually reveals the egregious violations of the Preamble to the Constitution birthed by the ESA and exposes the current idea that the one sentence comprising the 10th Amendment is being ignored as the final word in the relationship between the States and the federal government!

Now that we have come to this point; the question I have is “where do we all go from here?”

Jim Beers

28 March 2016

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.

Jim Beers is available to speak or for consulting. 

You can receive future articles by sending a request with your e-mail address to:   jimbeers7@comcast.net

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Dingoes = Wolves = Coyotes = Dogs

By James Beers:

Dingoes, wolves, coyotes and dogs are all Canids. The name Canid comes from the Genus name Canis. All four of these animals are called species within the Genus Canis: Dingoes (Canis dingo); Wolves (Canis lupus); Coyotes (Canis latrans); and Dogs (Canis familiaris) but that identification of these as four “species” is misleading.

Species is a term that historically referred to animals with similar characteristics and the ability to freely interbreed and produce viable offspring. For instance, horses and mules are similar and do interbreed but their offspring are infertile and thus horses and mules are separate species. Our four “species” however (dingoes, wolves, coyotes and dogs) share similar characteristics, interbreed freely, and produce viable offspring. A dingo (despite their absence outside Australia) breeding with a wolf or a coyote or a dog will birth or sire pups with shared genes and behavioral tendencies of the parents. Theses pups will grow to adulthood and similarly have viable offspring from breeding with any of the other “species”. They will be as recognizable as to parentage of say a Lab crossed with a Golden retriever or a Staffordshire terrier (AKA Pit Bull) crossed with a Doberman. In addition to these outward similarities, behavioral tendencies like the unpredictability of Chows or the aggressiveness of Dobermans will likewise occur in the offspring of say a wolf crossed with a dog or a dingo crossed with a coyote.

Dingoes are Canids that were probably introduced to Australia by aboriginal immigrants many centuries ago. Question: Ask your favorite “Native Ecosystem” enthusiast, if dingoes were brought to Australia by aborigines; are they – the dingoes and the aborigines – “Native”???). But I digress. Dingoes are yellowish-brown “dogs” or “Canids” that are the size of a medium to small German shepherd. When covered in a semi thick coat of fur they appear like a lean Shepherd-type dog, and when covered in a short hair they look like a lean pointy-faced hound dog with upright ears like wolves and coyotes. Dingoes travel in groups and behave very much like wolves. They are bold and very dangerous predators that (in Australia) kill many sheep, “rabbits, kangaroos and emus” as well as children and elderly people. Anyone doubting this last need look no further than the somewhat recent case of the camping Australian family whose little boy disappeared and the mother was charged and found guilty of (killing?, abandoning? I am unsure) the child and sent to prison. Only after an appeal and thorough investigation was it clearly determined that dingoes or a dingo in the campground had killed and carried off the child to be devoured in some remote location. Just like wolves in India and coyotes and cougars attacking a child for food, it is not at all uncommon for the predator to lunge at the child after approaching quietly as close as possible and then seizing them by the neck to crush or break their neck and asphyxiate them, if still necessary: it is also not uncommon for a child so attacked to make no sound.

The news article below concerns a 5600 kilometer (3,480 mile) long fence that has for decades represented an attempt to seal off the SE ¼ of Australia FROM DINGOES. Like Europeans and North Americans of times past, Australians have sought to eradicate or at least minimize the dangers and costs of having to live with these dangerous and destructive “Canids” or predators in the settled or being-settled landscapes of Australia. Anyone denying the facts as understood by those LIVING WITH THESE ANIMALS DAY TO DAY is seriously and ignorantly meddling in the lives of others instead of respecting their fellow-citizens’ rights to what Americans refer to as “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness”. Dingoes, like wolves, do not belong in settled landscapes for many reasons.

European history back to and beyond the days of Sparta and Athens were centuries of necessary and persistent wolf control until wolves were little more than occasional wandering remnants. Islands like Britain and Ireland finally exterminated wolves much to the delight of the rich, the poor and their rural economies.

North American is replete with the dangers and destruction that wolves presented to aboriginal Americans as well as European settlers and American and Canadian farmers, ranchers and other rural residents. With one or two minor exceptions, wolves were exterminated throughout the Lower 48 USA States by World War I and were being kept at tolerable levels or exterminated by government and private control in much of Canada that bordered the Lower 48 States and certain Maritime Island Provinces where farms, ranches and villages prevailed.

Russia and most of Asia have hosted the largest concentrations of wolves in the world from sweltering Indian villages across Central Asian scrublands to the forests of Siberia. To this day, wolves kill many people every year as well as destroy precious reindeer and other livestock and the dogs used as watchdogs for people and flocks. Dramatic controls like this Australian fence and techniques like killer dogs, poisons, shooting, traps, posses and other innovations have always been in short supply in these countries where weapons were banned; dictators Religious rulers and Czars kept rural people in helpless societies; and where effective, large-scale wolf controls have always been short-lived and susceptible to quick replacement of controlled wolf areas by the constant influx of wolves from robust wolf populations in surrounding areas.

Until recently, Europe, Asia and North Americans were in complete agreement with Australians about the undesirable nature of these large Canid predators in settled landscapes, especially where men and women are forced to go about unarmed. While Russians and Central Asians agree with these views to this day, when told of European and North American actions to introduce and protect wolves they are as stunned as if they were told that Americans were foregoing oil, natural gas, coal and nuclear power in favor of windmills or that Europeans were happy with and celebrating the steady increase in livestock deaths, dog deaths and mental instability of European grazers (that support rural economies, reduce fire dangers, and manage European plant communities for many purposes like erosion control and suppression of undesirable plants by grazing their flocks) resulting from wolf increases in both population and habitats across Europe.

This recent wolf worship (the correct word) has spawned a fantasy/science library of articles by grant and publicity-seeking “scientists” claiming “discoveries” of wolf benefits like “wolves change rivers” by killing big game animals and dispersing remaining animals from river banks thus causing trees and shrubs to proliferate as well as “Native” fish, animals like frogs and plants like Indian paintbrush. I call this pseudo-“science” Romance Biology. Unmentioned in these writings are always:

* The loss of big game hunting and the revenue it once provided to conservation programs by wolf activities.

* The dangers to human safety from the recent wolf attack in a Minnesota campground to the deaths of a schoolteacher on the Alaskan Peninsula and a young Canadian man in Saskatchewan. The impact on children, the elderly and families is enormous.

* The loss of livestock and ranches to wolf predation.

* The huge loss of dogs of all stripes to wolf attacks.

* The financial losses to rural communities, rural businesses, rural families and rural government revenue and authority.

As an American, I am always fascinated (less and less of late) by American innovations copied by others. Europeans are grinding out Romance Biology lies as more and more justifications are needed both in the popular media and as justification for more and continued wolf protection in the face of increasing death and destruction from the wolves.

Now, I can add the Australians as copying this propaganda technique that I call Romance Biology. Note the last three paragraphs of the following short article replete with pictures. A professor at the University of Sydney claims that “reintroduced and existing dingo populations” will “restore the balance of nature” (a meaningless term).

The final picture below is a cleverly (just like in the US and now Europe) worded bit of anti-human society propaganda. The composer (very likely an environmental or animal “rights’” radical group) would have us believe that dingoes (or wolves or coyotes or feral dogs or cougars, etc.) killing all manner of wildlife and livestock is both good and offsets any destruction, mayhem or human pain or death otherwise inflicted by these Canids.

Whenever you see this dingoes increase “the biodiversity of small mammals, lizards, and grasses’ or wolves “change rivers” Romance Biology, ask yourself and anyone believing this, “And your point is?”

Any area can have more or less biodiversity and that is to be expected where man lives and raises his family. The priority should always be the welfare and benefit of man, saying that man must abandon places or community supports simply for the sake of more “small mammals, lizards and grasses” is both silly and a declaration that man and his needs are inferior to any and every mix of plants and animals desired by the rich and powerful. Our challenge is to create and maintain a high standard of living for all persons while simultaneously providing for the endurance of all species and a rich biodiversity of plants and animals WHEREVER POSSIBLE. The dingo/wolf et al enthusiast refutes the “simultaneously” part of the equation and ultimately substitutes “primarily” thereby making their “Native”, “Ecosystem”, “Ecology first” mantra superior to man and his society. That is not only nature “worship” it is the rule if tyrants based on their visions of “nature.

For instance, if riverbank diversity was so valuable (assuming wolves, dingoes et al really do what they say, an assumption akin to climate change justifying population control, and the justification on one world government without any checks or balances) why weren’t hunters simply told to kill more grazing wild animals over the years and then manage the remainder in consonance with human activities and “biodiversity” targets? Anyone that thinks unregulated predation that cyclically varies wildly as do the prey, the predators and the resulting “biodiversity” is in any sense comparable to continuous wildlife management of all species is incapable of grasping the issue in any understandable manner. The real answer is that the dingo/wolf et al protection is meant to ultimately vacate the rural landscape and convert it to closed-to-the-public real estate run by bureaucrats and managed for the benefit of powerful interest groups, the rich and politicians.

I am reminded of a luncheon I attended almost 20 years ago in Brussels. I was sitting next to a Russian (actually a western Siberian with the look of a Greenlander or Northern Alaskan) wildlife expert. He was from Magadan on the Pacific coast near the Kamchatka Peninsula. He leaned over and said to me in a low voice, “Beers, can I ask you a question?” I said sure, and he said, “Is it true that you are putting wolves back into areas where they were exterminated years ago and protecting them?” Somewhat embarrassingly I answered, “Yes that is true.” He shook his head and mumbled to me. “How did you ever win the Cold War?”

What a world when a guy from Siberia tells a guy from Illinois that our people are nuts; and the Illinois guy could do no more than nod and shrug his shoulders in agreement.

That Siberian and I have more in common with those that built the Australian fence than all the expert Romance Biology “experts that invent diversions and lies about things that do not matter, be they “scientific papers” or “signs”. Unless and until the autonomy of Local communities to determine what plants and what animals in what mixes are to exist in THEIR community and how that mix is to be maintained; this rule of far-off dictators, interest groups and bureaucracies will only sit and grow like mushrooms after a rain. Local authority like this has only existed intermittently for millenniums in Europe and Asia: it has only existed in Australia and North America for a few centuries and it is disappearing right before our eyes as you read this. The real trick is to enable the humans that live with these animals to manage them for their own good and to permanently abolish the ability of far-off governments to rule the rural people, in their broadest sense, on behalf of the fantasies and imaginings of rich and powerful blocs with both obvious and hidden agendas.

Jim Beers
23 March 2015

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.
Jim Beers is available to speak or for consulting. You can receive future articles by sending a request with your e-mail address to: jimbeers7@comcast.net

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Helping “Bunnies”

This is Most Precious

How Absurd Journalism and Childish Nature Propaganda Are Being Used by Federal and State Government to Eliminate Hunting and the Funding for Management of Renewable Natural Resources for Human Benefit

The following article was given (the media does not generate these sorts of articles, they are “given” to them, often as already finished or partially drafted articles, by government agencies and academic “researchers” for a wide range of purposes from manufacturing support for budget or license increases to activating outrage and political support for proposed controversial actions) to the Poughkeepsie (NY) Journal recently. When I read it, I was skimming it as yet another Sesame Street-level bit of trivia until I read the last three short paragraphs that, while not really surprising me, floored me in their audacity by identifying how government hunting program money was being diverted into uses intended to eliminate hunting in the belief that the general public was too dumb to recognize it. Shades of that arrogant Obamacare “advisor” from Harvard or MIT

I have arranged my comments (A through G) corresponding to the sections of the news release on “Peter Cottontail” that follows them. The last comment (G), while insulting enough to sportsmen in its’ own right, is even more galling after reading all that precedes it.

*Editor’s Note* Please read the “bunny” article.

A. Note “bunny” and “Peter Cottontail” identifiers to introduce the article. How serious can the article be? Will there be any mention of why the New York Department of Environmental Conservation (i.e. DNR, Wildlife Agency, Conservation Commission, Fish and Game, etc. in other states) just spent $519,000 and five years on a “bunny” study? We are told it is for “helping restore, monitor and manage”; but for what, or for whom? Hunting is nowhere mentioned in what follows.

B. How cute! Rabbits as “the epitome of prolific breeding”, yuk, yuk. Oh, and the federal US Fish and Wildlife Service is evidently considering “protecting” said bunnies “under the Endangered Species Act.” A half-Million spent on “bunnies”, “the epitome of prolific breeding” by a State government on an animal that could skyrocket in numbers next year if timber and pulp cutting or odd strips of weedy-crops were planted on public and private land was undertaken? Federal ESA Listing being considered for “bunnies”? Like the observation in Hamlet about Denmark, there is something rotten going on here in New York.

C. So, let me get this straight: The “Native” habitat was “forest” that was “cut down in Colonial times” and therefore was, similarly devoid of “bunnies”. So, wouldn’t the bunnies be (like brown trout, pheasants, Great Lakes Salmon et al) Non-Native and a similar violation of the sacred pre-1492 America? Wouldn’t the remaining 14% of the 1960 “bunnie” population cited as a reason for alarm really be (according to current government mania about “Native Ecosystems) a target of eradication rather than a reason to suggest the full-Monty of the draconian federal takeover of the ESA? Actually this “bunnie” of concern is no different than any other rabbit in SE Canada or the N Lower 48 States. “New England” bunnies have all the biological significance justifying federal “intervention” as “red” wolves that are simply dog/coyote/wolf hybrids. “Bunnies” in New England are dwindling for the same reason that woodcock are dwindling in the woodlands of New England – the woodlands are no longer cut for either timber management, pulp or fire prevention on public or private lands. Thus there is no shrubby forest succession anymore for woodcock to nest in and feed their young just like there is little sunlight and little shrubbery on the forest floors for “bunnies” to live year around in cover. Agricultural land is not only shrinking due to everything from paving and home construction; agricultural crops no longer exist in weedy fields and disturbed edges so hospitable to “bunnies” and game birds. Add into all of this the government discouragement and resulting absence of consistent furbearer/predator hunting/trapping of any significance and robust populations of predators that eat “bunnies” from hawks and owls to coyotes and foxes; and you have yet another reason for this topic of “bunnies” that seem to be “using a different flyway” as government has been known to explain dearths of migratory birds in the bag in bad years. None of this; unmanaged woodlands, dwindling and sterile (for such wildlife) agricultural areas, or predation are mentioned in this article about a “bunnie” emergency that it is suggesting.

D. “Homeless” rabbits, how cute and how emotionally alarming to a large swath of urban voters anguishing over climate change and finding new worlds as ours is about to implode. Rabbits come and go periodically over time for a host of reasons. Other than dwindling predator food supplies, why is this a problem? Clearly hunting or human consumption of rabbits is never mentioned so here we have a “species” that admittedly must have been as rare as hen’s teeth when those European destroyers invaded the pristine America. Could the State be burning up a half-Million dollars in hunting program -intended money to assemble claptrap about such animal? Could State funding be being used to alarm the public about some critter that is about to be (needlessly in a biological sense) seized and (with all its’ claimed “critical habitat” as well) made into federal government grist for human activity, private property rights and economic restrictions plus further elimination of State and Local Jurisdictions and Authority? Isn’t this the “protected” Progressive Northeast where “empty wolf habitat” ignored by federal wolf Overlords whilst every nook and cranny of the rest of the Lower 48 States in slated to get wolves come “H!!! or high water”? Aren’t these those “love every environmental/animal rights law” States that insist on telling the rest of the Nation how to live their lives? Is it possible that the federal government no longer must rely on these fantasy-loving voters and their financial supporters and that somehow it will advantage federal politicians and federal bureaucrats to begin running rural New England as they are Wisconsin and Washington and Oregon and Arizona et al?

E. High deer densities are identifiable when you can see bare ground and nothing but tree trunks for six feet above the ground for a mile or more as you approach a “forest”. What all the Northeast environmentalists used to bemoan and use as rallying cries to close grazing, timber management, hunting and all other use of renewable natural resources on western public and private lands (“oh look at how they are raping the land”, “ranchers leave no stream bank vegetation”, logging has denuded the slopes and erosion is happening”, “hunting is cruel and it kills the healthy animals, not the old and sick like predators”) is exactly what they have done with their public and private property in the Northeast with deer. How is deer overgrazing impacts any different from hysterical and untrue claims of livestock effects out West? No hunting; no logging; no grazing and lo and behold none other than the august federal “Fish & Wildlife Service describes the current densities of deer in New England as “unprecedented.”

Let’s see, if hunting isn’t controlling deer (Closed-to-Hunting public and private lands abound and bureaucrats that are not strongly anti-hunting are, well, no longer bureaucrats), what will? What will save the “bunnies”? Why more predators of course. Stop all trapping and hunting and release wolves. Coyotes and foxes will supplement the expected deer massacres. But wait, weren’t we told that predators like wolves were good for the environment and big game like elk and moose and DEER? Won’t stream banks become lush once again and won’t all those rich Northeasterners, and the poor ones too, thrill to the sound of howling wolves “out back” while they reduce deer numbers? That is what Westerners and South Westerners and Southerners were told and how is that working out? Are there federal bureaucrats scheming at this moment for such a move to be announced like the Bergdal Terrorist Trade or the Cuban “Reset” in which no one knows and no one has any say because our “betters” are called that because they are simply “better” than you or me?

(F.) “The two rabbits look nearly identical and are only reliably identified by genetic testing of tissue, fecal samples or examining skull characteristics.” What can I add to such foolishness as the basis for government to use as a basis to abuse the populous (from incarceration, fines and loss of voting/gun rights) and to grow federal power at the expense of (supine) State and Local governments? Those that let this sort of thing to happen to State and Local governments, and to our freedom to hunt are those that Ben Franklin would have said “deserve neither!”

(G.) Read these last lines carefully:

“Three-quarters of the money for the project — about $389,000 — comes from federal excise taxes paid by sportsmen and sportswomen when they purchase guns, ammunition and archery items.

(The amount New York is using for this study is only a tiny portion of the many, many millions of dollars it receives each year from the federal government by way of the tax.)

The rest, about $130,000, is coming from the state and other sources.”

1.)$520,000 from “federal excise taxes paid by sportsmen and sportswomen when they purchase guns, ammunition and archery items” are funds intended for hunting programs in each state based on the amount collected each year and the size of the state and the hunting licenses they sell. A clever and unprotested change 15 years ago renamed the funds “Wildlife Restoration Funds” precisely to allow state agencies to spend the money just like this on whatever they wanted to or (remember it was feds that made the change) on what Federal Bureaucrats want them to do. Hunters be damned and ask yourself why you never heard about this or hear about these things such that they (the feds) have come to take for granted your tolerance and ignorance as fostered by your hunting organizations and those State bureaucrats that you have more often than not believed to have had your interests and rights at heart. As an aside, these are the funds that in the mid 1990’s the US Fish and Wildlife Service stole from the funds due to the States in order to capture Canadian wolves and release them in Yellowstone. Not only were the stolen funds never replaced, the state Wildlife Directors never even asked Congres to replace what federal bureaucrats stole from state programs and the American Hunters.

2.) “(The amount New York is using for this study is only a tiny portion of the many, many millions of dollars it receives each year from the federal government by way of the tax.)” Really? In 2013 the State of New York received $14.2 Million of these funds; in 2014 the State of New York received 20.5 Million of these funds. Anyone thinking that spending a half million of those precious hunting funds on silly science about an animal that is evidently not being hunted much and is not intended to once again be hunted as the federal government is tooling up (like some tin-pot dictator preparing for a surprise invasion) to take it over – well such a person probably neither hunts nor supports hunting. By the way, do you know the reason for the big jump? As President Obama’s final years approach, gun owners like a lot of other Americans are in great fear of losing their rights as well as many other things. Gun Rights are but one of those rights dangerously threatened as the federal government buys up billions of rounds of ammunition for untold purposes, closes the last lead smelter in the US, and has clearly embarked on an illegal and un-Constitutional campaign to rid the Nation of both guns and gun owners. Just like Obama’s first two years and Clinton’s first two years when gun control was also being pursued, 2013 and 2014 have seen an explosion of gun and ammunition purchases and an upsurge in Excise Taxes from those sales for State Wildlife Programs. How ironic is it that the more the federal officials buy up ammunition (thereby running up the price); close down domestic lead production (also raising the price and increasing our dependence of foreign sources; and threaten to confiscate guns – the more money goes to State Wildlife Programs to be squandered and thereby be denied to hunting programs and hunters. This makes federal bureaucrats and all the environmental extremist and animal rights radical groups happy as they progress toward their goals. Ask yourself why DU, Pheasants Forever, the NRA, Shooting Sports, Rocky Mtn. Elk, and your favorite State wildlife bunch never howled when this change was made or how this money is being spent today? I personally wonder why I am such a Pariah after years of trying to explain these things both verbally and in writing? I’ll give you a hint hunters, killing the messenger doesn’t change the truth in the message one “tiny” bit as this Poughkeepsie writer is wont to write.

3.) “The rest, about $130,000, is coming from the state and other sources.” The “State”? While technically true, it doesn’t come from the state employees union or the gas tax or the sales tax or the income tax – it comes from Hunting License Sales dollars and “other sources” like revenue from state hunting lands and state hunting program charges like entrance fees or consulting fees or other dollars generated by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. It is seriously illegal for any of those funds to be spent outside the state wildlife agency in order to continue getting future Excise Tax shares. So, it has finally come to this that the hunting dollars go to preparation to surrender another state hunting species to federal never-to-be-hunted-again Control and no auditor or no federal “wildlife person” or no hunting organization even notices.

If all the foregoing isn’t enough to jar hunters to see what’s up, consider this. By Law, State wildlife agencies must be audited every five years. In the 1980’s and 1990’s this went undone by federal bureaucracies as anti-hunting forces took over and saw easy access to those funds as in their best interest. When Congress found out in 1999 that the USFWS was stealing millions, audits were hastily re-instituted. Within three years millions of dollars of “diversions” and disappearance of funds were discovered but the theft was resolved politically behind closed doors, the auditors were fired, the audit reports redone with no findings of note, politically sensitive auditors were appointed, new audits or any negative findings have been invisible ever since.

Oh and one more thing, many states renamed and reorganized their wildlife agencies in order to allow the Excise Tax/License Revenue money to go into state motor pools, or to pay other state bureaucrats when their funding was low, or to take revenue from state land timber sales and put it in the General Treasury, or to allow a prison to be built on lands purchased with Excise Tax dollars, or even to allow illegal crossing access to favored land developers like Whitewater in Arkansas. One of the worst reorganizational setups for such skullduggery was the ones called “Environmental Conservation Departments”. This made all the sacred and blessed state programs like Pollution, Climate Change”, Environmental Education”,” Water and Air Management”, “Parks”, “Land Management”, etc. bedfellows with “Wildlife” and those Excise Taxes and License Revenues. The opportunity for chicanery and mischief is unlimited. But of course this was only a factor in a state where corruption was possible. Of course States like New York, Illinois, Massachusetts, California, and New Jersey would be above suspicion so disregard anything I have written here that might seem suspicious of or negative toward about the State of New York, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, or those bureaucrats at both those levels that labor away day in and day out trying to unravel the mysteries of things like disappearing “bunnies”.

Jim Beers
2 Feb. 2015

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.
Jim Beers is available to speak or for consulting. You can receive future articles by sending a request with your e-mail address to: jimbeers7@comcast.net

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In Washington, Some Mourn The Arrival Of New Fish and Game Director

UnsworthMore than forty years have passed since the real growth of environmentalism in this country began and as a result, we are now witness to the second and third generations of post-normal, conservation wildlife scientists, presenting little hope for sound or consumptive wild game use.

To rousing ovations of many in Idaho, their deputy director of the Fish and Game Department (IDFG), Dr. Jim Unsworth, departed the Gem State to take over the head seat at the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW). To many in Washington, who have been following the wolf introduction disaster, seeing Unsworth as their new director is worse than a Tippecanoe curse. But obviously to the committee that selected Unsworth, he was their match made in heaven.

Should Washington residents fear Unsworth’s selection by committee, “a citizen panel appointed by the governor to set policy for WDFW”, because it was a terrible choice? There were eight candidates and that field was narrowed to four, ultimately opting for Unsworth. For some this makes their skin crawl.

More than likely there probably wasn’t anybody any better or with different values to choose from. A true “Manchurian Candidate” would have been trained specifically for one purpose. In this case and cases all across this nation, the “Manchurians” are products of a “Manchurian” education system. The rigged system was created to pump out candidates just like Unsworth. It’s nearly impossible to escape the result. The same rigged system was designed to produce members of committees that will select candidates from the rigged system. And finally, the rigged system forms the masses to follow blindly along. In truth, most people just don’t know what’s going on.

From the years that I have covered wolf and other wildlife issues in the state of Idaho, I’m not sure I recall a statement made in a government document that upset outdoor sportsmen any more than one that Jim Unsworth was a part of. In a 1993 document, Elk Management in the Northern Region: Considerations in Forest Plan Updates or Revisions, a report completed by Unsworth and two other colleagues, it reads:

We recognize now that elk are part of a bigger picture and that elk habitat management must be placed within the context of ecosystem management, biodiversity, State management strategies and goals, and shifting public demand and interest that now embrace nonconsumptive and consumptive interests.

Sportsmen often pay lip service to such issues as fish and game departments catering to environmentalists and their desire to end hunting, trapping and fishing, but when we see it put to writing that the paradigm is and has shifted toward non consumptive wildlife management, it’s enough to make maggots climb a small, thin rope. Dr. Valerius Geist calls “ecosystem management” with the goal of “utopian philosophy of ecosystem perfection absent of all human activity”, as “intellectual rubbish.”

The reality is that Dr. Jim Unsworth is perhaps a second generation product of post-normal wildlife management taught to him by such conservation romance biologists as Dr. James Peek. Yes, America is witness to the fruits of its labor. While outdoor sportsmen enjoyed time in the wild, away from the hustle and bustle of the nasty world now comprised of “changing the way we talk about wildlife”, the nasty world made the change that took place and it appears it has taken the introduction of wolves, forced onto the landscape of human settlement to give some pause to ask how that all happened. Isn’t it just a bit too late?

In my newest book, Wolf: What’s to Misunderstand?, I spend a great deal of time explaining how American citizens were sold the biggest con job until Obamacare was thrust upon us much in the same manner. I’ll talk more of that in a moment.

Jim Unsworth was a student of Dr. James Peek. If you want a greater understanding of what Unsworth was subjected to as a student of wildlife management, try reading this and this.

However, the likes of the new-science, wildlife scientist shouldn’t come as a surprise. We were warned about the coming destruction. In The Outdoorsman, Bulletin Number 47, Jan.-Mar. 2012 edition, editor George Dovel subtitled his central article as: “Review What Has Happened Since 1990 When the IAFWA Hired Bird-Watchers and Other Predator Preservationists to Replace Public Hunting in North America.

Dovel writes:

The Washington, D.C. – based international group that once represented the interests of state Fish and Game agencies by lobbying Congress and the President for them, is now their master. Although it chose to drop the word “International” from its name in order to sound “more friendly” to the North American hunters and fishermen it once supported, the “Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies” even added the State Forestry Administration of the People’s Republic of China to the long list of federal agency members it represents.

In 1990, IAFWA hired non-hunting bird watcher Naomi Edelson to establish non-consumptive wildlife
recreation as all state F&G agencies’ number one priority. This shocking violation of the law in many states was ignored by commissioners and biologists.

In July of 1990, IDFG Research Biologist (now Deputy Director) Jim Unsworth wrote a 1991-95 elk plan based on the IAFWA directive which blatantly violated Idaho Wildlife Policy in Idaho Code Sec 36-103. That 74-year-old law clearly states that wild animals, wild birds and fish within the state of Idaho shall be preserved, protected, perpetuated and managed to provide continued supplies for hunting, fishing and trapping.

Yet the introduction to Unsworth’s Elk Plan said:

“Although this document is called an Elk Management Plan, it is really the plan of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (hereafter called the Department) for managing the many and varied impacts of people upon wildlife and wildlife habitat.

“…The Department believes the greatest return to society from the wildlife resource occurs when the
maximum variety of products is provided and that maximizing a single product (e.g., harvest) is not
necessarily desirable. We will encourage and promote nonconsumptive use of elk.”

We also get a glimpse into a few things upon examination of an interview Unsworth did in 2009 for Idaho Public Television.

Based on information provided in this interview, Jim Unsworth must have been with the Idaho Department of Fish and Game around 15 years, when he told in his 2009 interview that:

The day they brought them [wolves] in, I was in the Middle Fork with some other Fish and Game folks. We were counting elk and deer, and we had just finished up for the day, and we were on the Thomas Creek airstrip, and getting ready to head back to the cabin and have dinner. All of a sudden a bunch of fixed wings started landing, and here they were, dropping wolves off. None of us that were there counting elk even knew that this was going to happen.

Seriously? As much national attention as was given the introduction of wolves into this region and a 15-year biologist, who eventually became deputy director, didn’t know this was going to happen? While champagne was being uncorked, employees of the IDFG knew nothing? There must have been some very big secret being kept under wraps. I wonder what that could have been? (wink – wink)

And there was this:

And so, I remember sitting there on the airstrip with some of the guys I was working with, and we’d just spent a week counting –- looking at one of the most remarkable elk herds in the world, and looking at these wolves that they had dropped off.

And as a biologist, I was thinking, Whoa, this will be interesting! I mean, we have an incredibly abundant food source here, and a new top predator, and I wonder what’s going to happen.

I’m guessing that as little as Unsworth claimed he was aware of wolf introduction and what was going to happen to the elk populations, those behind the introduction were lying like well-worn rugs in a house of ill repute, claiming they knew wolves wouldn’t have any impact on elk herds.

In this interview, Unsworth sounds as though he is pretty balanced in his outlook and perspective on wolves and wolf management and maybe even wildlife management in general. However, if you pay attention, you will read indications of his personal perspective of non consumptive wildlife management. It appears as though, even as he might be passing himself off as a hunter, he doesn’t really care if those hunting opportunities are taken away from hunters. He prefers to address the issue by stating that the elk moved and it’s up to the hunters to change their habits.

You will also read this:

Elk is such an important part of the fabric of our life, for lots of people. That’s where they get their winter’s food. A lot of people don’t understand that, that are back east watching. They like the idea of wolves, and how everything’s happening out here, but I think they miss the people part of this whole equation. They miss the impact that these wolves are having just on local guys wanting to go out, recreate and feed their family for the winter. People miss that.

Which brings us back to the remarkable con job of wolf introduction. I’m sorry Mr. Unsworth but it wasn’t just those people “back east watching” that didn’t care one iota that, “Elk is such an important part of the fabric of our life,” not one little bit. Again, in reference to my book, Wolf” What’s to Misunderstand? I point out that every human element in the discussion of the impact of wolves in the Environmental Impact Statement was deliberately left out. That was in 1994 and this interview was in 2009 and evidently in that 15-year period, he and others like him still haven’t caught on.

The only real important issue about wolf introduction and present wolf management IS the human element. As Unsworth even points out, why did officials in 1993 deliberately avoid having to seriously address those elements?

But that is the power of new-science, post normal, wildlife management, brainwashing. It matters not whether there exists any scientific evidence, all based upon the scientific model that once worked pretty darn good. No, it’s now all about outcome-based science, developed and passed on by “change agents” whose minds were filled with idealistic nonsense and they believe it. This is the rigged system. What we are seeing is nothing more than a product of that rigged system.

Perhaps Unsworth was the best choice for Washington; a clone with all the right talking points. Those who sit on the governor’s hand-selected committee to vet a new director, I’m sure were all selected with the same principles that George Dovel told us were underway; that wildlife management would be done by bird watchers and environmentalists who are more concerned about kicking us off our lands and “their” lands, while managing for scarcity, than they are about real wildlife conservation with abundance for all.

It will not be until we, as a society, figure out how the progression of these “propaganda fantasies” started and how to stop it, that we can once again find fish and game directors, and a staff full of real biologists, that understand the difference between truth and fantasy.

If you figure out how to stop it then the challenge will become how do you re manufacture the clogged mands?

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Experience Vs. Romance Biology

A letter writer from Morristown, New Jersey, has a piece in MyCentralJersey.com in which he reluctantly says that the recent attack by a black bear on a Rutgers University student in a park/preserve, was predictable. He claims he has sent “at least” 12 letters since 2007 warning that this event would occur under present bear policy.

Bob Guinter brings up a few good points. The first is in response to a person from the Sierra Club continuing to claim that black bears are docile, timid and afraid of humans.

…after spending over 10,000 hours in the North woods of Maine at my uncle’s wilderness cabin…, My experience is different. Black bears are unpredictable and they are both scavengers and predators as circumstances allow. Perhaps those who believe they are docile and afraid of people simply choose to ignore behaviors they exhibit commonly in their indigenous environment where they are at the top of the food chain.

The second point is in response to a claim that bears become aggressive, slowly over time, because they learn that humans are a source for food.

During my time of hiking and fishing the East Branch of the Penobscot River, it was a rare event to see another human; sometimes not seeing anyone outside of camp for weeks at a time. Yet bear encounters with them exhibiting aggressive behavior toward humans were common. There, they only seemed afraid of anything in the fall when the hunting-dogs were running.

This is perhaps a very good example of romance biology versus actual experience. In this day and age where real science has been shown the door and replaced with computer models and romantic theories, rooted in nonsensical idealism, what we are seeing here is the fruit of that planting.

The masses of people have been propagandized. Some may think propaganda a harsh term in this instance but when you consider that the definition states that it’s bad information being used to promote a cause or belief, it surely fits nicely. The problem here is that this propagandizing has been taking place at all levels of society for a very long time. The result is too many people have never been taught the real truth. Nobody wants to admit they were lied to and that what they believe is false. It’s like admitting a weakness, like alcoholism or drug addiction.

The real loser in all of this nonsense of “new understandings” is the beneficial-to-all scientific community. A true scientific method involves the advancement of a hypothesis. Real scientists then choose to discover if such a hypothesis holds validity. Changes to the hypothesis begin and over time, what was once a mere theory, begins to have credibility – not the lie we have been fed that “the science is settled.” Such a statement, as has been used with climate change, is completely dishonest and borders on criminal.

Today’s new science, called by some “scientism” creates computer models based on an ideology or political agenda. Money is injected and what once was a tried system of peer review, has become a support system propped up with money and promises to arrive at a desired outcome.

Unfortunately for all of us, we are left having to decide who we should believe. The result being this divide pitting totalitarian-minded people, armed with propaganda, attempting to force the rest of society to follow their ideological beliefs, through such things as voter referendums. How does this at all resemble a credible scientific process?

In the letter written that I’ve linked to above, the writer wants to know how the person with the Sierra Club can state that, “bears are usually docile and are more afraid of people than we are of them.” He asks, “How does he know?” And therein lies the difference between knowledge and understanding, through real experience, and fabricated propaganda being used to promote an agenda.

It’s really not all the far away from the story of the two guys who had hiked back into the wilderness to do some fishing and are being chased out of the woods by an attacking bear. One man says, “I don’t think I can outrun this bear!” The other man replies, “I know I can’t. I just need to outrun you.”

Which man is dealing with truth?

EBranchPenobscot

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Alaskan Romance Biology

Guest post by James Beers:

Regarding the following drivel presented as a quasi-book review/interview by Emily Schwing about Marybeth Holleman and wolves:

Wolves howl for “joy” like anthropomorphic biologists confuse the very human question (“How many and how much impacts of wolves can or will WE tolerate”) with the very judgmental ideology that somehow wolves are above, or superior to any human concerns.

While it is a testament to a free and prosperous nation that folks like Dr. Haber and Ms. Holleman can somehow spend (actually get paid for) a “lifelong effort to chronicle the lives of wolves”; too often the results are not HOW WE might better live with or manage said wolves, instead it becomes a social infection around which coalesces fevered movements to protect and sanctify the wolves in spite of human needs and desires where wolves exist. Invariably this modern saga is painted as below wherein the villains, i.e. the “old timers” and the “Board of Game” are fomenting a “dark future” for wolves and all that lies between them and Armageddon is the memory of a beloved Doctor, “environmental groups” and a lady’s paean to that memory. All that is missing is the interviewer closing with “Go Girl Go.”

The reality of the presence of wolves; what that means; and what must humans do if they are to live with them is an important matter in constant need of research and (public) dialogue. This romance biology, that is also common in locations like Minnesota and the West Coast States, only quashes dialogue in the ooze of feelings and emotions intended to substitute fantasies in the minds of the widest and most far-away voting blocs to use raw government might on those living with and directly affected by not only wolves but bears and cougars and every other fish, fowl and critter that will:

1. Generate election donations and votes for accommodating politicians.

2. Generate donations for radical organizations and their subsidiaries from lawyers to “specialists.”

3. Generate budget and personnel increases, promotions, autonomy from control, bonuses and increased power to federal bureaucrats.

4. Generate #3 for State bureaucrats.

5. Generate greater and steadier cash flows from government to Universities.

My lifelong passion concerns those affected by wolves and what works and doesn’t work. So I will pass on a book about details concerning wolves and why WE should avoid affecting them despite what those humans being affected believe and experience.

The subject of either people manage wolves or wolves manage people is like the “question” of is a human fetus a “person” or a blob of tissue. Any sentient person know the answer to each question but persons with other agendas bob, weave and deny the answer so often and with such vehemence and threat of government retribution that too many of us stay quiet and watch our children come to believe the unbelievable as we smile and avoid comment. The only thing worse than this romance biology about wolves is the Quisling government “biologist” or the traitorous “hunter’ or “rancher” warbling about how WE should forego any management of wolves because of everything from “they belong or were here first” or “they only eat the old and infirm” to “fladry works” and when their “old and sick” food supply dwindles, they will too.

Take a stand or eventually be run over by these “concerned” romantic’s et al.

Jim Beers
22 July 2014

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European Carnivores: Idealism, Romance Biology and Refusal to Believe History

“Many conflicts persist, and some are escalating. Finding solutions is going to require patience, ingenuity and a willingness to make compromises. Although research can provide some guidance, there is going to be a lot of trial and error because quite simply this experiment has never been tried before. For almost the entirety of human history we have been at a state of war with these species. We are now trying to find a way to coexist with them, although nobody knows how this coexistence is going to look in the end. Who could resist being a part of such a process?”<<<Read More>>>

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Romance Biology – Now and Then

Guest blog by James Beers:

The following lurid prose is from a recent article about wolves in Yellowstone. It is foisted on the public as some sort of “scientific” factoid.

The following two paragraphs say all that need be said about the sad state of public information, public gullibility and government propaganda disguised as “science” today.

Regarding government-introduced wolves in Yellowstone National Park (totally isolated from the millions of acres surrounding the Park but who cares?) we are told:

“Photos taken in the early 1900s, when wolves roamed Yellowstone, reveal that young trees such as aspen and willow were abundant. In 30 years, after wolves were hunted out, the forest stopped regenerating. “Wolves are shaping what you see here,” Douglas W. Smith, leader of the Yellowstone Wolf Project, told Scientific American magazine. “In 30 years, when you drive through the park, it will look very different.”

Maybe more like it did a century ago. You can see the colour return to those black-and-white photos. If only Jack London had lived to read about this.”

So “young trees” “were abundant” “in the early 1900’s”. So what? Is it written somewhere that “young trees” are better or necessary or belong in particular places? Are aspen and willow prettier or better for stream fish you either can’t fish for or are being eradicated to be replaced by fish species that provide less fishing opportunity? Are the aspen and willows better for elk and moose that no longer provide hunting opportunity but only food for more wolves?

“After wolves were hunted out”? I thought job #1 for Park Rangers, since the Park was withheld by federal fiat from Wyoming, Montana and Idaho, was to prohibit all use (hunting, predator control, trapping, etc.) of animals in the Park?

“The forest stopped regenerating”? When the “Cedars of Lebanon” (of Biblical fame) were cut for Phoenician ships that ruled the Mediterranean economy for centuries, rural Lebanese folk set sheep and goats to graze on all the grasses, brush and young trees that suddenly were so abundant. Between the slopes and all that hard grazing (before folks realized how important and beneficial it was to manage grazing pressure) on lands that were communally-owned, soil eroded and soon only grasses and brush were present. For many centuries that modified landscape has supported and supports pastoral communities of villages and herders. THAT forest truly stopped “regenerating”: Yellowstone merely began regenerating differently as it no doubt has done since time immemorial thanks to fires, diseases, predators, native impacts, drought, earthquakes, torrential rains, snows and snow melt, and all the other vagaries of nature. Thinking there is some absolute ideal picture that always was and always should be is as silly as saying wolves are benevolent and belong in settled landscapes such as The Lower 48 States.

Speaking of which, “Wolves are shaping what you see here,” is certainly true. So too is the lack of former elk and moose numbers and the presence of tourists and campers and tourists feeding animals and etcetera, etcetera “shaping what you see here”. That is merely an academic observation slanted to the observer’s wishes. Is the Park “better” with no wolves and abundant elk in the meadows and moose in the ponds being observed enthusiastically by the “once-in-a-lifetime” tourists and harvested outside the Park each fall by thousands of hunters supporting rural economies and state conservation programs to the tune of Millions of dollars annually? Or is it “better” with only a rare tourist glimpse of an elk or moose or a wolf and the presence of all the dangers (disease, human safety, etc.) associated with the presence of wolves even in this tightly regulated and scripted government enclave where there are no dogs or livestock or kids walking alone to rural bus stops or old ladies walking to rural mailboxes for the wolves to menace.

So the head Pooh-Ba scientist tells a “Scientific” magazine that “In 30 years, when you drive through the park, it will look very different.” Really? It looked different 50 years ago and it will look different 50 years hence despite all this twaddle about some mythical and sacred Park landscape that only government employees and environmental extremists with access to unlimited funding and political power can provide. The Park was set aside for “the People” as in “We the People”, the first three words of our Constitution. Making it into a federal reserve differing from the lands of bygone monarchs only in being unmanaged estates of unused renewable natural resources lacking herbivores and stuffed with trees and undergrowth that yield catastrophic fires in surrounding settled landscapes is not only a travesty, it is a betrayal of “the People”. It violates the Constitutional charge to a federal government to “establish justice, insure domestic Tranquility, …”promote the general Welfare, and secure the blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity”.

For those unfamiliar with the spelling of color as “colour”; colour is the accepted British spelling. This anomaly may be attributable to the Yellowstone ecology author’s (Bijoy Venugopal) background as likely somewhat distant from Yellowstone? You see, Romance Biology compositions are only limited by the imagination of the author. Experience or truth are neither required nor expected.

Finally we have the piece de resistance, “If only Jack London had lived to read about this.” When I was young I greatly enjoyed Jack London’s fiction. So I searched high and low to discover the reason for this reference but while I found that old Jack abandoned his wife and kids, was an alcoholic, ran unsuccessfully as a Socialist for Mayor of Oakland, was picked up for vagrancy in Niagara Falls and had visited Korea, Australia and England; nowhere could I find an interest in or visit to Yellowstone. Thinking it may have to do with his frequent mention of wolves in his writing, I searched those mentions and discovered that Jack London too could have been a successful Romance Biology writer today if only he “had lived to read about this”. Perhaps it was due to passages like the following that Mr. London’s name is evoked?

In “Love of Life” a prospector who has abandoned a friend and walked for hundreds of mile in N Canada to reach the Arctic Ocean endures unbelievable hardships with the thin hope of finding a ship to rescue him. As he lies almost dead on an Arctic beach a whaler appears on the horizon as he encounters a sick wolf. The account of this man and wolf interaction must surely be why Romance Biology authors everywhere admire Mr. London and why he must have a secure place in the Romance Biology Hall of Fame:

“The patience of the wolf was terrible. The man’s patience was no less terrible. For half a day he lay motionless, fighting off unconsciousness and waiting for the thing that was to feed upon him and upon which he wished to feed. Sometimes the languid sea rose over him and he dreamed long dreams; but ever through it all, waking and dreaming, he waited for the wheezing breath and harsh caress of the tongue.

He did not hear the breath, and he slipped slowly from some dream to the feel of the tongue along his hand. He waited. The fangs pressed softly: the pressure increased: the wolf was exerting its last strength in an effort to sink teeth in the food for which it had waited so long. But the man had waited long, and the lacerated hand closed on the jaw. Slowly, while the wolf struggled feebly and the hand clutched feebly, the other hand crept across to a grip. Five minutes later the whole weight of the man’s body was on top of the wolf. The hands had not sufficient strength to choke the wolf, but the face of the man was pressed close to the throat of the wolf and the mouth of the man was full of hair. At the end of half an hour the man was aware of a warm trickle in his throat. It was not pleasant. It was like molten lead being forced into his stomach, and it was forced by his will alone. Later the man rolled over on his back and slept.”

In true Romance Biology fashion, the man on the beach is first seen from the whaler by “scientists” on a “scientific expedition” whereupon he is rescued. It doesn’t get any better than that.

Yet, what would Jack London have thought if he “had lived to read about this”, i.e. Yellowstone and wolves? My guess is he would have admired how fellow authors were making money from such silliness; he would have gotten a kick (do “Socialists” have a sense of humor?) out of a public so gullible as to believe even bigger tales than he wove; and finally he would have shook his head and wished to be back in his world where people knew the truth about things like wolves and understood that even a dying man couldn’t kill a wolf with his teeth and then suck out wolf blood.

But, all Romance Biology today must have these propaganda chestnuts in them to qualify; besides the only difference is that people once merely enjoyed such fiction unlike today when they actually believe it.

Regardless of what these authors and their bureaucrat/radical friends tell you, wolves do NOT belong in the settled landscapes of The Lower 48 States, bombastic prose or not.

Jim Beers
19 March 2014

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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.
Jim Beers is available to speak or for consulting. You can receive future articles by sending a request with your e-mail address to: jimbeers7@comcast.net

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