August 30, 2015

Read How We Got Where We Are – Then Use Just Two Facts to Expose the Truth about Wolves

*Note* – The following article is published on this website with the consent of the author. Please support The Outdoorsman by clicking on the link to your right on the computer screen and subscribing to the print publication. The only way this honest and accurate work can continue is with your support. Thank you.

by George Dovel

If knowledgeable outdoorsmen had easy access to just two indisputable facts from bona fide wildlife experts, they could use just those facts to discredit the self-serving clichés from the quasi-environmentalists and self-proclaimed “wildlife conservationists.”

The two facts referenced in this article have been verified by long-term studies conducted by acknowledged wildlife experts on both sides of the wolf issue. This makes them virtually impossible to refute so the radical must resort to attacking you or your source of information.

If you go on the offensive for a change and arm yourself with just these two facts, and the names of the wildlife experts who provided them, there is no need to engage radical wolf preservationists in further discussion. Your job is to present facts – not to expose yourself or your sources to ridicule for errors in grammar, lack of academic credentials, etc.

Fact #1 – Failure to Properly Control Wolves to Maintain Healthy Balance with Their Prey Eventually Decimates Prey and Starving Wolves Kill Each Other

Thirty years ago, internationally recognized wolf authority L. David Mech published an article titled, “How Delicate is the Balance of Nature?” (see National Wildlife Vol. 23, No. 1, and the May 1985 Alaska Magazine). In that article, Mech admitted that his initial three year 1958-1962 wolf-moose study as a graduate student on Isle Royale helped fix the balance of nature idea in the public mind.

Mech wrote: “During two decades of wolf research, conducting studies in northern Minnesota and on Isle Royale in Michigan, I have learned that, far from always being ‘balanced,’ ratios of wolves and prey animals can fluctuate wildly – and sometimes catastrophically. Wolves may actually starve after killing off almost all the moose and deer in an area. This explains why wolf-control programs may sometimes ensure greater and more stable numbers of both wolves and the animals they hunt.”

Mech then described how the once famous white-tailed deer population in northeast Minnesota began to crash after wolf control was halted. He and his students flying in a ski-equipped plane radio-tracking collared wolves saw fewer deer every year.

Most of the deer in the 1,500-square-mile northeast region were not accessible to hunters during hunting season, and seven severe winters made the deer far more vulnerable to wolves. Mech and his students observed deer killed by wolves with little or nothing eaten, and the wolves increased and prospered until they ran out of deer.

Then a starving pack of wolves looking for prey invaded another pack’s territory resulting in wolves killing wolves. Meanwhile, malnourished juvenile wolves continued to starve to death or succumb to diseases instead of replacing adults that died.

The few wolves that survived had turned to killing moose and beaver and a similar scenario with the white-tailed deer and wolves in Northeast Minnesota was also playing out with moose and wolves on Michigan’s Isle Royale. Human killing was not a significant factor in either location.

In his 1985 article, Mech wrote: “However, there is little disputing the results of a recent well-controlled experiment in Central Alaska. Some 38 to 60 percent of the wolves were removed each year from a test area while wolves were not controlled in several adjoining areas. Moose and caribou calves and yearlings increased two- to four-fold where wolves had been taken compared with their numbers before wolf control and were consistently higher than in areas with no wolf removal. Actual moose and caribou herd sizes followed the same trends.”

“Control programs allow recovery of both prey and wolves so that each could live over a longer period. It is something I am reminded of every time I fly over my Minnesota study area and look at lake shores that were speckled with deer and wolves in the late 1960s, and that now lie empty.”

The following graph was photocopied from the 2014-2015 Isle Royale Report by Vucetich and Peterson:

IsleRoyaleMooseGraph

Contributors to the Balance of Nature Myth Starting on the left side of the graph, the first five black squares and five white diamonds indicate a four-year average of about 600 moose to feed an average of 22 wolves. That reflected an average ratio of only 27 moose per year per wolf but that ratio increased slightly to about 33 moose per year per wolf in 1963.

Using only the three years of wolves observed, and guessing the number of moose based on limited wolf kills that were mostly found by volunteers during the summer, did not prove Mech’s and Durward Allen’s National Geographic claim that wolves maintained a “balance.”

Mech’s bias was evident in two articles published in the June and July 1960 issues of Pennsylvania Game
News promoting the “Balance of Nature” as a supposed fact even before the brief Isle Royale study was completed.

In 1930, Charles Elton, the father of modern Wildlife Ecology, wrote, “The ‘balance of nature’ does not
exist and perhaps never has existed. The numbers of wild animals are constantly varying to a greater or less extent, and the variations are usually irregular in period and always irregular in amplitude (being ample).”

Yet 33 years later, an unproven hypothesis by Durward Allen and his student, catapulted them into instant fame and fortune when it was published in National Geographic. It also brought forth a series of “me too” biologists and others who ignored or altered facts to make it appear their favorite predator needed special protection.

The Craigheads “Sick and Crippled” Theory

In 1958, I spent several months transporting a USGS Tellurometer crew by helicopter between mountain peaks in Yellowstone National Park and adjacent high country. I became good friends with two Rangers and the YNP Biologist, who explained in detail how increasing grizzly bear numbers were reducing the little known YNP Madison-Firehole elk herd that wintered entirely in the Park on the upper Madison River.

He invited me back in May of 1959 to watch grizzlies and even a black bear pursue and easily catch and
kill those cow elk that were calving in late May and early June. That was the same year the Craighead twins, Frank and John, assisted by graduate student Maurice Hornocker, began to study grizzly bears in Yellowstone Park.

Each year the Craigheads were aware that after the grizzly bears emerged from hibernation, they were killing large numbers of Madison-Firehole cow elk that were ready to calve. Yet their 1968 National Geographic article included a photograph of a grizzly covering a bull elk carcass with dirt and grass with the following comment:

“The grizzly’s keen sense of smell enables it to detect and locate carrion from afar. Rarely does a grizzly kill a healthy adult elk, but it may fell a sick or disabled one.”

This change from managing our wild game to benefit humans, to researchers lying about the impact of
excessive predator-to-prey ratios, needed to be brought to the public. But the larger circulation national hunting and fishing magazines including Outdoor Life and Field and Stream declined to print factual articles about this, telling me they were “too controversial.”

In 1969 we began publishing The Outdoorsman and did what was necessary to send thousands of
complimentary copies to licensed hunters in the lower 48 states and Alaska. Our list of paid subscribers and their elected officials soon reached 30,000 and our publication of facts began to produce results.

In May of 1970 Rob Donley and I photographed grizzlies killing pregnant cow elk just before calving on the upper Madison, including evidence of bears ripping the fetus out of the womb and eating all but the lower legs of that delicacy. We invited outfitter Steve Jordan along to shoot 35 mm movies of a spectacular chase in the open during which a grizzly covered half a mile while the group of pregnant elk he was chasing ran little more than half that distance before the bear caught up with them.

Following the 1970 calving season, the biologist again contacted me to advise that he had recorded 90 of those elk killed by grizzlies. He also described how the bears killed all 11 calves from a small group of elk plus several of the adults.

He voiced his belief that the Craigheads’ failure to even mention bears killing the Madison-Firehole Elk was the result of their promoting the “sick and crippled” theory of academic biologists.

He also said the Craigheads were tagging and studying only those grizzlies habituated to garbage dumps rather than the wild grizzlies in remote areas in the Park. They opposed the Park Superintendent’s plan to close the remaining garbage dumps and eliminate black bear feeding by the public to cut down increasing injuries to humans. They recommended leaving two major garbage dumps open for another ten years plus shooting elk and bison to feed the bears.

But despite their efforts to discredit YNP officials, those same officials refused to issue their 1971 permit to conduct research in the Park which ended their bear study.

Outfitter Charges Hornocker Claims Not True

Back in 1964, the Craigheads’ assistant, Maurice Hornocker, secured his grants and hired local lion hunter Wilbur Wiles to study the relationship between mountain lions and deer in Idaho Unit 26 on Big Creek in the Idaho Primitive Area*. (*now the Frank Church Wilderness)

Deer and elk populations in Unit 26 had been severely depleted by multiple deer harvests and 90-day either-sex deer and elk seasons extending into the deep snows of mid-December. The ratio of mountain lions to deer far exceeded the healthy one lion per 360 deer that Leopold had recorded in his 1933 study in California.

Despite decreased hunter harvests, deer numbers continued to decline each year, and the study offered the opportunity to confirm whether excessive lion populations were a primary cause of that decline.

As the 3-year study unfolded during the 1965-1967 winters and was then extended for two more years, an ongoing letter-writing feud between outfitter Steve Jordan and Hornocker was published in the Idaho Statesman. Hornocker claimed the Unit 26 deer and elk populations were increasing while F&G helicopter counts continued to report sharp declines.

Governor Requests Evaluation of Big Creek Study

Idaho Governor Don Samuelson provided Rob Donley and me with a copy of Hornocker’s third-year and then his five-year study report, and asked us to investigate and report back to him with an evaluation by June 1, 1969. The June 1969 Outdoorsman contains a copy of our report as well as an article entitled, “The Great Cougar Controversy.”

In his research, Hornocker reported that 25-30 lions were captured repeatedly in the 200-square-mile study portion of Unit 26. He classified them as “residents” and said that any lion they captured only one time was considered a “transient.”

Rob Donley and I removed two large male cougar traveling together several miles outside of the study area boundary in Unit 27 (see photo below). Only one of them had been captured and tagged by the researchers once but was never seen by them again.

Donley

 

These two adult male cougar had been preying on an isolated group of elk in my Unit 26 outfitter area that was inaccessible to hunters once Thanksgiving week or earlier snows closed the passes to horseback travel. The curious lions ran right at us and then tried to kill Rob’s dogs but that’s another story.

I mention this incident on the Unit 27 side of the pass in Marble Creek to point out one of several flaws in Hornocker’s study reports. He coined the term “Mutual avoidance behavioral mechanism,” to claim that male lions never fight each other or travel with one another.

During an earlier year, I discovered evidence of two cougar fighting in the summer, with one bleeding steadily. Hornocker’s coined phrase was another example of alleged but non-existent “social regulation” that was claimed by Allen and Mech, the Craigheads, and Canada’s wolf advocate-environmentalist, Douglas Pimlott.

Highly Inflated Deer Estimates in Big Creek Study

Instead of searching for facts to prove or disprove the hypothesis that uncontrolled cougar benefited deer and elk, Hornocker ignored the radical decline of both species reported in IDFG helicopter counts. He substituted his own set of “estimated” deer figures claiming that both prey populations were increasing dramatically.

In 1967 he claimed the Unit 26 deer population had increased from 1,099 in 1966 to 2,595 in 1967 yet a four-day IDFG helicopter count in 1967 recorded only 466 total deer. He also claimed there was a ratio of 163 deer and 71 elk to each one of the 25-30 resident cougar.

On a “biomass” (relative bulk) basis, this equaled 358 deer – almost exactly the healthy 360 deer per cougar Leopold had reported in California back in 1933.

But if Hornocker had multiplied the claimed 163 deer and 71 elk times even the minimum estimate of 25 resident cougar, it would have required a minimum of 4,075 deer plus 1,775 elk to equal his claimed healthy balance.

Conflicting Claims Re: Cougar “Social Regulation”

The February 1970 issue of Field and Stream included an article by Associate Editor Ted Trueblood praising Hornocker’s “myth-shattering conclusion” that “predation by lions is inconsequential in determining ultimate numbers of elk and deer.”

Trueblood described Wiles’ and Hornocker’s actions as the hounds trailed and then treed a lion that had killed a cow elk. He then offered conflicting statistics in a confusing attempt to support Hornocker’s false claim.

But 30 years later, following 10 years of research, two of Hornocker’s associates, Logan and Sweanor, repeatedly emphasized in their 2001 book “Desert Puma,” that mountain lions do not socially regulate. Yet in the material Hornocker has published and in his recent media interviews, he has continued to insist that the lions he studied in Big Creek did socially regulate themselves – allowing their prey to increase and prosper.

Starved Cougar Illustrates Lack of Prey

I stopped outfitting and guiding at the end of the 1966 season because my conscience would not allow me to charge hunters for such a slim chance to kill a branch-antlered bull elk or even a mature buck. The lack of deer was emphasized when Rob and I discovered a dead female cougar in Unit 27 that had left an odd track in the snow.

About one foot of the tip of its tail was encased in ice and had dragged in the snow and in the icy water when it waded out in the Middle Fork of the Salmon River to scavenge a deer skeleton. The skeleton, wedged in a pile of debris below the Mahoney airstrip, had already been picked clean by ravens, and we followed the emaciated cat’s back-trail for several miles for more clues to its fate.

It had hunted two side drainages from the mountain top to the river, but we did not see any deer tracks in either drainage. During the 1950s, several hundred deer were harvested and hauled from the Mahoney airstrip each season by pilots flying from dawn ‘til dark.

But in 1962, the deer harvest from Mahoney declined dramatically and I suggested the Commission stop selling the extra deer tags in Units 26 and 27, and cut a month off the tail end of both deer seasons. I was helping IDFG with a Bighorn sheep study at the time and I explained that the hunter-killed deer I examined had no fat reserves resulting from constant hunter-caused stress in a 90-day season, and that extra stress would cause many more to die even during only a moderately severe winter.

However Big Game Manager Roger Williams insisted that killing even more female deer would solve the problem. The Commissioners approved his suggestion to add a Middle Fork Antlerless tag in Unit 27 and leave the either-sex season open through mid-December in both units.

That allowed a hunter to kill three deer in Unit 27; four deer by also hunting in its Big Creek tributary; and five deer by also hunting in one of several other selected Idaho units. My USAFE courses in Forestry and Zoology had not prepared me for this massive exploitation of wild game, yet hunters could also kill up to five more mule deer by hunting in Nevada after they killed their limit in Idaho.

This is Pertinent Information – Not “Ancient History”

On Jan. 28, 1970, about 300 hunters attended an Idaho Senate Resources Committee hearing with one-third forced to stand or spill out into the Capitol rotunda hall. Although Chairman Sen. Warren Brown kept calling F&G “damage control” witnesses to praise the agency’s “professionalism,” hunters who had been waiting for several hours to testify angrily demanded he call the witnesses in the order they had signed up.

Like other politicians then and now, who protect the bureaucratic agencies and special interests rather than the citizens who elected them, Brown continued to try to limit testimony that described the wanton destruction of the wildlife resource. But when the marathon hearing ended at 1:00 A.M., the attendance by 300 citizens had convinced a majority of the Senators it was time to find facts.

Multiple Harvests of Bears & Lions Restored Game

A three-year performance audit by Legislative Auditor James Defenbach reported F&G had knowingly published highly exaggerated big game harvest statistics during the preceding 10 years. The F&G Director was forced to resign by a new Governor, and Joe Greenley, the new Director, ordered the inflated 10-year harvest statistics be replaced with only the actual kills reported by hunters.

He either closed or dramatically shortened deer and elk seasons, and eliminated all female and juvenile elk and deer harvests except in Idaho’s Panhandle. He also implemented multiple bear and lion harvests statewide to increase the number of surviving juvenile deer and elk.

During the 1972 Idaho legislative session, a bill authorizing payment of a $7.50 bounty on 10,000 Idaho coyotes over a two-year period passed the House by a 44-22 vote. Based on inflation to 2015, that would equal $42.45 per coyote today but the bill was held in the Senate Committee for several weeks while IDFG and other lobbyists mounted a massive campaign to defeat it.

Finally, according to woolgrower Senator John Peavey, the F&G Director agreed to double the amount spent by the Department for federal predator control, and the bounty bill failed 18-17 in the Senate based on that promise. But only $10,000 was added to the $25,000 paid to federal Wildlife Services for coyote control, and it was used solely to settle a dispute about whether coyotes or drownings were killing deer on Dworshak Reservoir ice.

Gubernatorial hopeful Peavey then sent a letter to the Idaho Statesman explaining why he had voted “no” on the coyote bounty. He said that he had talked with IDFG Director Joe Greenley, and, “unlike his predecessor, Greenley believed in active predator management as a tool in providing adequate game for Idaho hunters.”

But in a Statesman Guest Editorial, Greenley responded: “Although predator control has long been an integral part of wildlife management in Europe, it is a sensitive subject, particularly among ‘wildlifers’*…Most American wildlifers have a strong ecological background embracing the full diversity of the natural world – they are hesitant over extreme single value alteration of the biotic community for game.” (* “Wildlifer” is the name of the Wildlife Society’s weekly newsletter to its members who also call themselves “wildlifers”)

The Exploitation of Wild Game in North America

Back in 1946, Ira Gabrielson resigned as the first Director of the new U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to accept the position of President of the nonprofit Wildlife Management Institute (WMI). The manufacturers and service providers who had depended on Uncle Sam buying their products during four years of war, now realized they had to create a vast new market for their products.

They became major financial supporters of the WMI and Ira Gabrielson returned the favor by directing WMI staff studies of the organization, authorities and programs of 31 state and two Canadian game agencies. Was it just a coincidence that the widespread WMI recommendations said excessive populations of game were destroying the habitat in remote areas, and non-resident hunters must be invited to harvest the surplus animals?

State Game Warden Expresses Concerns

In Idaho’s Twenty-First Biennial Report, the State Game Warden cited a 100% increase in non-resident hunters just from 1945-46 and warned that our big game is limited and expendable. He wrote: “The nation has had the greatest sales program for hunting that so far has been experienced. Resorts, dude ranches, airlines, railroads, sporting arms manufacturers, sporting magazines, and many other concerns have used game popularity in their advertising. Game and fish are definite attractions meriting public enthusiasm, but it is time to give some thought to how long we can meet the increasing demand.”

Now fast forward to 1970. After involving powerful international organizations, that he helped create and fund, in North American game management, Gabrielson retired as WMI President to head up its Board of Directors. He was replaced by Daniel Poole who, in his 1973 annual WMI workshop, criticized biologists for their failure to sell their “management” programs to the public.

The North American Wildlife Policy of 1973

Then Poole introduced Wolf Professor Durward Allen to present the “North American Wildlife Policy of 1973.” The New Policy emphasized the protection of all predators by either giving them game status or by prohibiting “indiscriminate” predator control.

In addition to outlawing predator bounties, and the use of poison except in emergencies such as a rabies epidemic, the 1973 Policy refused to recognize the need for predator control to benefit populations of game. Instead, it stressed the need to provide prey species to feed the predators which, it said, have high esthetic values.

Now fast forward 23 more years to the Idaho Deer and Elk Teams supposedly formed to halt declines in deer and elk populations and hunter harvests. On June 24, 1996, when Upper Snake Regional Biologist Ted Chu said one of the purposes in their Mission Statement was, “To provide elk and deer to feed bears and other large predators,” it was endorsed unanimously by all of the Team Biologists.

But when sportsman Elk Team Member Bill Chetwood suggested providing elk and deer for hunters to harvest (per I.C. Sec 36-103), none of the IDFG Biologists agreed and Facilitator John Gahl stated: “We’re not going to use anything that’s in the law as part of our Vision Statement or our Mission Statement.”

In the preceding 58 Outdoorsman Bulletins I’ve provided numerous examples of biologists’ refusal to control predators to protect and perpetuate game species. For a period of several years during the 1970s, desperate biologists even blamed families that vacationed together and harvested healthy wild game for the freezer for the lack of game caused by the biologists’ continued adherence to the WMI 1973 Wildlife Policy.

Hunting in Idaho Has Become a Sport for the Wealthy; Nearly Half of Households Can’t Afford Licenses, Tags

In their “Mirror, Mirror on the Wall: Reflections From a Non-Hunter” presentation to the Wildlife Management Institute Annual Workshop in Phoenix in 2008, and to the Idaho Chapter of the Wildlife Society meeting in Moscow in 2009, IDFG employees Michele Beucler and Gregg Servheen presented the following 2007 survey results:

Hunter retention rates declined sharply in the nearly half of Idaho households with annual incomes of $40,000 or less.

Zero decline in hunter retention of individuals from households with $100,000 or more annual income.

Instead of charging the hunter and fisherman the $11 in 1969 license and tag fees plus just the inflation since then (a 2007 grand total of $62.15), and using all of that money to manage our wild game and fish resource, he or she is now charged nearly three to four times that much* to hunt the same wild game species – but with even lower populations and harvests. (* depending on whether a $124.25 sportsmen’s package is purchased initially or more expensive licenses and tags are purchased separately)

Then the extra millions of dollars are robbed from license fees and used to help support the dozens of former “nongame” biologists on the Fish and Game payroll who refuse to preserve, protect, perpetuate and manage our wild game as the law requires.

Instead of bragging about the travesty of so-called wolf recovery, they should be held accountable for feeding Idaho’s endangered Selkirk caribou to bears, mountain lions and wolves and for introducing multiple diseases into Idaho wildlife where there is no evidence they ever existed in or were spread by Idaho’s wild animals before.

The Compass Guaranteed Non-game “Management” Would Remain IDFG’s Number One Priority

In 2000, after 10 years of changing all state game agencies’ top priority from hunting and fishing to non-game activities, the [International] Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (later shortened to AFWA) used new Idaho F&G Director Rod Sando to implement “The Compass” – a 15-year Management Plan to make that change permanent.

During a 2001 Commission meeting, Natural Resource Policy Bureau Director Tracey Trent introduced Michele Beucler to the Commissioners. She gave them a presentation claiming that 85% of Idaho citizens supported increased emphasis on non-hunting/fishing as outlined in The Compass, while only a few “Utilitarians” supported only hunting and fishing and a few “Greens” did not support either.

Conspiracy to Get Hunters to Approve “The Compass”

Although Commissioners Nancy Hadley, Gary Power and John Watts supported The Compass, the other four Commissioners did not. Watts made a motion for outgoing Chairman Hadley to appoint two or three Commissioners to help Deputy Director Mansfield and Tracey Trent “tweak” The Compass to make it more acceptable to license buyers.

The motion passed and Hadley appointed Power and Watts and gave them instructions to make the necessary changes and get it back to her before her term as Chairman expired. On Dec. 23, 2004, with assistance from Mansfield and the two Commissioners, Tracey Trent changed the Funding and other portions of the controversial document, “The Compass,” in order to get license-buying sportsmen’s approval for the full Commission to pass it as follows:

“Page 8 – Funding
The Department’s main funding source comes from one segment of the population – hunters and anglers – primarily through the sale of hunting and fishing licenses. This money has been – and will continue to be – used to manage fish and wildlife for hunting and fishing.

The Department will not use hunting and fishing license fees to meet all the desires of the public, other agencies and local governments for managing fish, wildlife and native plants.” (emphasis added)

“Page 10 – Objective
Maintain or improve game populations to meet the demand for hunting, fishing, and trapping.
? Manage predation to achieve a balance between game and predator populations.
? Collaborate with tribes, private landowners, and agencies to manage populations and harvest for long-term sustainability.

“Page 17 – Objective
Improve funding to meet legal mandates and public expectations.
? Continue to use revenue generated by hunters, anglers, and trappers for programs that benefit hunting, fishing, and trapping.”

The stipulations on Pages 8 and 17 that revenue generated by hunters, anglers and trappers would be used for programs that benefit hunting fishing and trapping are uniform and understandable.

Yet 2-1/2 years later, on July 3, 2007, F&G Commission Vice Chairman Wayne Wright, and IDFG Director Cal Groen told an ad hoc Legislative funding committee that Nongame funding provided only 25% of the money F&G was spending on non-game, and the rest was being taken from sportsmen license fee funding of law enforcement, fish stocking and other hunting and fishing programs. Then Director Groen candidly admitted this had been going on for the previous 15 years.

The license fee and predator-prey balance promises written into “The Compass” were not worth the paper they were printed on. The obvious solution was to stop stealing sportsmen’s license fees and reduce their license, tag and permit costs by at least 50% so the less affluent families could continue to hunt and fish. But that was not what Beucler had in mind.

Not long after the F&G officials confessed they had been robbing the excessive license fees – which forced lower income families to give up hunting – Beucler was recommending to The Wildlife Management Institute and the Wildlife Society that they recruit non-sportsmen to replace the license buyers who were being forced out of hunting by excessive costs and lack of game to harvest.

In 2010, as the new President of the Organization of Wildlife Planners, Beucler wrote an article titled, “The Death of Wildlife Management?” in which she proposed an end to wildlife management that benefits hunters and fishermen. She wrote, “Hunting and fishing will remain important threads of the American Tapestry regardless of how many people participate,” and cited false figures to claim that the percentage of licensed hunters and fishermen was already declining rapidly.

That, of course, proved to be another lie when the national survey showed an increase of 9% for hunters and 10% for combined hunters and fishermen. Yet she recently worked closely with Director Moore to have the Management Assistance Team teach IDFG employees to prepare for changes that reduce the number of hunters.

Legislative Investigation That Was Never Completed

The January 2009 Outdoorsman No. 32 published the unlawful use of $231,338 in P-R/D-J funds by just two IDFG Bureaus in FY 2008. An Idaho Legislator contacted me at the beginning of the 2010 session and said the Legislature was investigating F&G’s illegal use of Federal Excise Tax funds as a match for nongame/endangered species projects, and asked for additional proof.

I obtained and photocopied public documents that showed the illegal use of $427,534.00 in sportsman excise tax dollars in FY 2008 to match nongame and endangered species funding. In the June-Aug 2010 Outdoorsman No. 40, I published photocopies of these documents and described how alarmed Director Groen and Deputy Unsworth became when I requested additional information, and how they destroyed the original documents to hide their misuse of the P/R and D/J funds.

During the 2011 Legislative session I asked how the investigation was progressing but I’ve never received an answer.

Fee Increases since 1969 Nearly Triple Inflation Cost In order to understand what has happened since 1969, please study the following chart carefully, including the footnotes and the few comments. Once you understand what has happened, you will realize what must be done.

CostToHuntGraph

Except for a handful of game preserves with limited elk hunting, from 1966-1970 my wife and I and our older sons could each hunt and fish in any open season in Idaho for everything except trophy species for $11. It cost only $8 for my wife and sons who normally didn’t hunt elk, but if they chose to kill a second deer in limited units, they could by paying another $2.

When Joe Greenley was rebuilding Idaho’s wild game and fish populations during the 1970s, changing license & tag fees from $11 to about the $21.76 Consumer Price Index Cost of Living increase in 1979 was proper. But charging hunters to hunt lions and bears which had formerly cost nothing was not.

And giving muzzleloader and longbow hunters special early and late seasons when the game was far more vulnerable, and charging them extra money for that special privilege harvest opportunity established a bad precedent.

When Jerry Conley replaced Greenley for the next 15 years, and then a growing list of subsequent Directors replaced each other, Game Biologists threw science out the window and began creating all manner of bonus special privilege hunts/seasons requiring special weapons permits and/or drawings with a limited number of permits awarded.

Abundant Game Numbers = Abundant Nongame

For the first half of the 20th Century when so-called sport hunters and dedicated game wardens restored the game species that had been decimated by a small number of market hunters, everyone saw an abundance of non-game. It wasn’t until excessive game harvesting combined with refusal to maintain a healthy ratio of game to its predators, that declines in both game and non-game species became evident.

But instead of restoring that healthy balance, biologists continued to increase the hunting and fishing fees, but use the extra money in a futile attempt to rebuild nongame numbers by manipulating habitat.

Brave Commission Action Does Not End Corruption The ray of hope in all of this was when the F&G

Commission forced Deputy Director Jim Unsworth to seek employment elsewhere, and forced Director Moore to tell his employees to stop “stirring the pot” and obey the law to preserve, protect, perpetuate and manage Idaho’s wild game and wild fish for hunters, fishermen and trappers to harvest (see Aug-Oct 2014 Outdoorsman No. 57).

I have provided all of the foregoing information to try to make the reader understand that these two corrective actions by the Idaho Commission were still not enough to dismantle the corrupt system that is dedicated to destroying our heritage of hunting (i.e. for all but the few wealthy individuals who may continue to support it).

The Commission’s next opportunity to restore IDFG’s lawful mandate to manage wild game and fish for hunting, fishing and trapping began as Agenda Item 13 in the May 20, 2015 Commission meeting in Lewiston. It is the process of re-writing the State Wildlife Action plan for another 10 years and Sagle resident Ed Lindahl recommended adding a statement describing the Department’s first priority as “providing surpluses of wild game and fish for those who hunt, fish and trap in Idaho.”

In March of 2004 when Rita Dixon gave her presentation about the federal grant money her group had already received to prepare Idaho’s first State Wildlife Action Plan, Commissioner John Burns asked her if any sportsman license dollars would be used. She responded that the matching funding had already been secured but failed to answer his question or mention the alleged source(s) or amounts of the alleged matching funds.

In the Lewiston Commission meeting on May 20, 2015, she bragged to the Commissioners about the millions of dollars in matching funds her nongame group has received to match the dollars it has received from the feds.

But what she failed to tell Burns in 2004 or the Commission in May 2015 was how much of that matching money has been stolen from license fees and excise taxes paid by Idaho sportsmen – a deliberate violation of the Congressional legislation that created the grants.

Despite all of the gimmicks (from “chipmunk” donations to specialty license plates) only a tiny handful of nongame supporters are willing to donate any money for their special privilege wildlife viewing areas, etc. Managing nongame endangered wildlife is NOT a function of a GAME Department and should be transferred to the Governors Office of Species Conservation – the Idaho agency that is legally mandated to handle them.

If you understand the chart comparing the radically increased fees charged to sport hunters and anglers with what they should be charged according to the Consumer Price Index, you must realize that state game management agencies are being destroyed from within by nongame and non-hunting activists posing as biologists.

Do not be deceived by their false claims that this expensive program was forced on them by the federal govt. Remember it was non-hunting activists posing as Idaho & Montana biologists who allowed wolf introduction.

Until we stop letting the non-governmental groups from the Washington, D.C. beltway and the MAT training center in West Virginia dictate what we manage and how we manage it, our Constitutional right to hunt, fish and trap will continue to be destroyed.

If enough concerned sportsmen from each state would take the time to write their elected representatives in Congress and ask them to stop voting to appropriate funding for the State Wildlife Grants, it could restore our hunting and fishing heritage. Why not give it a try?

More Research Supporting Fact No. 1

Dr. Val Geist’s study conclusion of wolves’ return to Vancouver Island resulted in the annual black-tailed deer harvest declining from about 25,000 to only 3,000.

The same scenario that has occurred with wolves in Idaho played out in Southern Alberta about 15 years earlier when the northern wolves repopulated SW Alberta. Initially they found abundant prey, but Canadian researcher Mark Hebblewhite spent 10 years documenting the destruction of the area’s big game herds by wolves in the Banff ecosystem.

He recorded a 90% decline in elk numbers, slightly less in moose populations, and extinction of several caribou herds. And after half a century of research involving Canadian wolves, Tom Bergerud’s undisputed conclusions that uncontrolled wolves destroy herd after herd of woodland caribou, are accepted even by those who advocate keeping big game herds in a predator pit.

To learn why Dr. Charles Kay insists Isle Royale Research is not appropriate; to read the claim that moose were originally transported by train and boat to Isle Royale; and to read Fact #2 – Why Wolves Cannot Exist near Human Settlements, don’t miss “The Outdoorsman No. 60.”

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Answer to Maine’s Imagined “Wildlife Management Corruption”: More Taxes

In what can only be recognized as a typical, left wing, nationalist/socialist, totalitarian response to wanting control over Maine’s wildlife management programs, one man proposes levying more taxes on the citizens in order that he can have control. The Bangor Daily News carries the opinion.

The Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine, the one organization the haters of the North American Model of Wildlife Conservation seem to target, responds to the opinion piece.

SAMGlowaRebuttal

The opinion piece carries the worn out talking points laced with nonsense, along with sour grapes and brattiness for not getting one’s way on an issue. Let’s peek at a couple issues mentioned.

First is the reference toward “democracy.” Over my years, I have discovered that people see democracy as a good thing so long as they are not the sheep among wolves voting on what’s for lunch. In this case, the writer is angry because democracy allowed for the election of certain state legislators, as well as members of the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine. With those democratically elected people, laws were passed and/or blocked, as has been the case in American politics since even before the constitution was formulated. However, the author chooses to state that, “Under the guise of democracy, anti-democratic legislation,” passed that he doesn’t like. I fail to see his point.

Democracy stinks! However, it is what has become the way of doing business because it has provided an avenue in which power brokers can morph the system into a nationalist, socialist form of rule. In reality, the writer, while attempting to convince readers that SAM and Maine legislators are disguising their efforts as a form of democracy, it is the writer and his followers who are attempting to disguise their work as democratic, when in fact it more of a leftist approach of levying taxes in order to gain more control over the people and forcing one’s idealistic lifestyle onto the masses. There is a name for that and it’s not democracy.

The writer chooses to use the results of a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Survey in order to prop up his claim that there are more “wildlife watchers” who spend more money than hunters, fishermen, etc. therefore they deserve to rule over all others. It should be pointed out, and has been shown for several years now, that one of the major problems with this survey, as with all polls and surveys, is the questions and how they are worded and administered.

In this survey, pollsters asked people if they observed wildlife at anytime while traveling about the state. If the answer was “yes” then they are categorized as “wildlife watchers.” It’s a dishonest way of padding the survey to show things that just are not reality. Even in this opinion piece, the writer frames all of these observers of wildlife as some kind of organized entity being left out of all things wildlife.

Twice anti-bear hunting advocates have attempted to put a stop to the practice and twice they have failed. These were the results of democracy in action. Neither referendum was a commentary on whether Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife(MDIFW), nor the Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine, are corrupt organizations.

If the writer so much loves HIS democracy, then he must surely realize that democracy requires the convincing of a majority of voters to his way of doing things in order to get what he wants. When people use utter nonsense, among ignorant statements that cannot be substantiated, the people catch on quickly, credibility is vanquished and one quickly falls into the loser’s bracket.

For now, the people don’t want non consumptive wildlife management in Maine; a system based on flawed “natural balance.” It just doesn’t work and has proven to create scarcity for all. How is that advantageous to anybody or anything?

New group advocates more young forest habitat

*Editor’s Note* – The road to hell is paved with good intentions! As was pointed out to me by a friend the other day, is not this proposal of forest manipulation, based upon the belief that it is “FAIR” for all wildlife, a promotion for the creation of more, national forests and state wildlife management areas? A task that cannot be accomplished by government because of their inability to do anything successfully with the exception of intrusion, regulation and loss of rights?

Perhaps this group should carefully consider what it is they are advocating for.

A new group, called the Virginia Wildlife Habitat Coalition, is being organized to make certain wildlife gets a fair shake in the management of national forests and state wildlife management areas.

Source: New group advocates more young forest habitat – HeraldCourier.com: TriCities Outdoors

Environmentalism Has No Faults

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Testimony Given in Constitutional Amendment to Prohibit Wildlife Management via Ballot Referendum

Testimony of James Cote on behalf of the Maine Trappers Association in Support of a Constitutional Amendment to Protect Scientific Wildlife Management in Maine

April 6, 2015

Senator Cyrway, Representative Luchini, members of the Committee, my name is James Cote and I reside in Farmington, Maine. I am here today on behalf of the Maine Trappers Association in strong (and qualified) support of an amendment to the Maine Constitution to protect scientific wildlife management. While the term “strong” is self-explanatory, I will describe my use of the term “qualified” later in this testimony.

Two things are certain to me on this subject. The first is that the process of amending any constitution is not one to be undertaken lightly. I am a strong supporter of the people’s right to petition their government. The second is that the framers of Maine’s Constitution had no way to anticipate how our ballot initiative process would be abused in the modern day in an effort to exploit and politicize our public wildlife resources. It is because of that exploitation and politicization, that we come to you today and ask for your support of a constitutional amendment to protect scientific wildlife management in Maine.

Combine tone-deaf advocacy organizations with hundreds of millions of dollars in resources and sparsely populated rural states (like Maine) with large populations of charismatic fauna and you’ve got a recipe for disaster when it comes to wildlife management. What do I mean when I use the term tone deaf?

After losing a campaign to ban Maine’s three most effective methods of managing our bear population in 2004, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) came back in 2014 to do the very same thing. In context, HSUS spent about a million dollars in 2004, and they contributed over 99% of the roughly $2.8 million dollars of the Yes on 1 campaign in 2014. When they realized that they couldn’t overcome the public’s trust of DIFW, they filed a lawsuit just a few short weeks ahead of the election in an effort to grab a headline and get our Department to back down. Days later, they filed a request for a temporary restraining order to get ads with the Department taken off the air. That request was denied by Justice Joyce Wheeler of the Maine Superior Court. Again, not liking that they didn’t get their way, the Humane Society of the United States filed an appeal that decision. And just a few short weeks ago, an HSUS attorney told Justice Wheeler during the court’s status conference, that HSUS would be seeking another ballot initiative in 2016, despite the fact that Maine voters said no just 4 months prior. If there is one thing we know about HSUS, it is that they don’t care about electoral or legal precedence, and they make good on their threats. That’s scary when you think about the fact that their organization is worth roughly $200 million.

We Mainers have experienced this phenomenon on more than one occasion. Perhaps most notable have been the 1983 campaign to end Maine’s moose hunt, and the 2004 and 2014 campaigns to effectively end Maine’s bear hunt. On all three occasions, our Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (DIFW)—the officials and scientists that we entrust to manage our wildlife– opposed these ballot initiatives.

The 2014 campaign siphoned a tremendous amount of money out of Maine’s economy, and from the bank accounts of thousands of Maine people who sought to protect DIFW’s ability to manage our bear population. It would have undermined 40 years of nationally recognized bear management and research.

Our public opinion surveys, time and time again, showed the public trusted the biologists and game wardens at the DIFW to manage our wildlife far more than any other entity- more than professional guides, more than sportsman organizations, and yes, far more than the Humane Society of the United States.

The enabling legislation of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife provides Maine people with a constant safeguard should a constitutional amendment pass. Their enabling legislation reads:

The Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife is established to preserve, protect and enhance the inland fisheries and wildlife resources of the State; to encourage the wise use of these resources; to ensure coordinated planning for the future use and preservation of these resources; and to provide for effective management of these resources.

To further subject Maine’s wildlife management to ballot initiative undermines the very purpose for that mission statement, and the existence of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife. But that is exactly what the groups that put these initiatives on the ballot seek to achieve. They don’t want biologists to manage based on science, they want emotions to dictate how we manage. They will chip away, as they are doing in states all across the country, little by little until they get what they want, whether it’s good for the species or not. And all the while they will have drained otherwise productive resources from people who support our Department. In my opinion, that is an easy way to hold our wildlife hostage.

It is because of this statutory charge that we feel comfortable in asking you for this support of a constitutional amendment. An ideal amendment to our constitution would prohibit wildlife management at the ballot box, but would not prohibit public input or petition. You see, Mainers will still have many ways available to them to influence wildlife management:

1) Advocating at the Legislature.

2) Advocating at the Governor’s Office.

3) Working with DIFW officials in working groups.

4) Working with the DIFW Advisory Council on rulemaking changes.

5) Petitioning the DIFW to change a rule (in many cases a threshold of only 25 signatures of residents, sometimes more).

All of these options allow for public participation, but with the benefit of biological sideboards provided by the Department.

What prohibiting wildlife management by ballot initiative does is take the extreme amounts of money, distortion, and 30 second sound bites that we all know occur during campaigns and place the wildlife issue at hand in a more controlled policymaking environment. No less subject to public input and participation, but in a posture to consider more details from people on all sides of the issue. Our wildlife deserves that type of debate, not a war of television ads.

And now I’ll speak to the part about “qualified support”. I believe strongly, as do many others in this room, that this issue deserves lots of input. The two bills before you today are not perfect. Whether a constitutional amendment eventually gains your support or not, should be based on a thorough discussion with stakeholders and comprehensive legal analysis. As we enter the middle of April, I think it would be both reasonable and responsible, for all parties, to consider that the timeframe to consider such a significant policy is closing rapidly before the first session of the 127th Legislature adjourns sometime later this spring. Instead of rushing to a conclusion, we would request that this committee carry over either LD 754 or LD 1054 to the second session of the 127th Legislature. This process would allow more time for committee members and the Legislature to hear from constituents on the matter, to review policies and procedures at DIFW, to study the history of wildlife issues at the ballot box, to compare models from other states, and to have a more comprehensive discussion next year.

This decision is very important for the future of Maine’s wildlife. We can choose to subject Maine’s wildlife to be managed by whims at the ballot box, or we can safeguard our wildlife by making sure that the voice of the people and agency that we entrust with a statutory obligation to manage our wildlife for future generations are not buried under 30 second sound bites, laminated postcards, and special interest groups from away that have a determination to put more money in their political coffers and put an end to our storied outdoor heritage.

Wolf Population in Denali Low, Blamed on Hunting and Trapping

*Scroll for Updates*

The Alaska Dispatch carried an article about a petition generated to shut down hunting and trapping in boundary areas of Denali Park because wolves in the park have dropped from a population of 143 to 50 in about 8 years. But hunting and trapping isn’t the problem.

It was great that the author pointed out how well the fish and game department managed wildlife in a Game Management Unit adjacent to the park but never would come out with an explanation of why there was no prey left for the wolves inside Denali. The author states that, “When prey is abundant, wolves flourish. When prey populations are low, wolf populations become low.” A true statement but what allows or what is responsible for prey populations becoming low? That’s the most important question that should be answered.

Anyone who knows wolves understands that the savage predator can destroy a prey base and then move on. Once the prey base is gone, basically one, or any combination of events, can occur – 1. Wolves move to other areas where prey exist and do the same thing. 2. Wolves die from starvation and disease. 3. Wolves resort to cannibalism.

Chances are pretty good that what is going on in Denali is that the wolves, and they are protected in the park, are effectively destroying their own prey base and thus themselves. If wolf populations have been cut by nearly two-thirds, it might allow for a short period for prey to respond positively, provided it isn’t below sustainable levels, which will bring wolves back for a time to bring the prey species back down very low again. This could be labeled a predator pit depending upon other factors.

The author also points out that the adjacent Game Management Unit, a mass of acreage considerably smaller than Denali, is being perpetuated by wildlife officials for 10,000 moose, 300 wolves and still humans can harvest moose meat. Denali is a protected park and we see the results.

Also of note: This article shows the author’s discovery to two things – people’s complete ignorance of wolves, wolf management and ecosystems and the obvious bias toward anti hunting and trapping and NOT pro wolf. Some of the comments he reveals are pretty funny.

*Update* (4/2/2015 10:01 am) – I was sent another article from Alaska that quotes the Alaska Board of Game director as saying, “[L]ow numbers of moose and caribou were to blame for low wolf population levels.”

The Mess Current Idaho F&G Commissioners Inherited is NOT Wildlife Conservation

*Editor’s Note* – The below is perhaps the most comprehensive, historic, and accurate account of events surrounding the introduction of wolves and Idaho wildlife management, ever presented. Readers should bookmark this page as a resource to reference facts in this regard. Thank you George Dovel.

By George Dovel – The Outdoorsman: Republished with permission, all rights reserved.

In October of 2007, Biology Letters published a research report by UCLA Professor Robert Wayne and his former PhD candidate Jennifer Leonard titled, “Native Great Lakes wolves were not restored.” It described two years of nuclear genetic testing of 68 Great Lakes area wolves, and finding that most were crossbreeds of coyotes and a Canadian subspecies of wolf.

The report said 69% of them did not have any of the same genes found in 17 wolves collected from the Great Lakes area between 1905 and 1912. Unlike the 17 100-year-old wolf samples, none of the 68 more recent wolves tested were all wolf.

The realization that protected wolf subspecies have been replaced with a Duke’s mixture of mongrel canids shocked many who read it for the first time, including the media. But when the media contacted Eastern Gray Wolf Recovery Team Leader Rolph Peterson for his comments concerning the “startling news”, he said they had known all along that the wolves were cross breeding with coyotes.

In fact both Peterson and wolf expert David Mech were members of Professor Wayne’s research team 17 years earlier when they published their conclusion that wolves in the wild often bred dogs or coyotes that produced fertile offspring. A 1970 study report by Mech was cited to help support that 1990 conclusion.

Mech Provided 24 Alleged North American Wolf Sub-species to American Society of Mammalogists in 1974

On May 2, 1974, the ASM published a list of 24 North American wolf subspecies provided by Mech, which was originally produced by Goldman from 1929-1941. Although many taxonomists argue there is only one gray wolf species, or at best a handful of gray wolf subspecies, having such a long list would have allowed more wolves to be listed as threatened or endangered in more locations.

Dr. Val Geist has often explained to hostile judges and lawyers that a different subspecies, regardless of changes in body size and/or appearance, can only exist if there is a genetic adaptation to a different environment. Temporary changes in appearance, body size, etc. occurring because of a change in environment, but not involving changes in genes, are simply adjustments that will be reversed after a few generations if the species returns to its original environment.

In a 1992 article in Great Britain’s prestigious Nature magazine, Geist warned that taxonomists’ failure to correctly identify species and subspecies would allow lawyers and judges to determine what species or subspecies are legal, and allow them to decide which listings will be protected. During the next 22 years, Geist and other senior scientists continued to publish the criteria for listing subspecies, but their expert advice has been largely ignored.

In Response to criticisms that some of the wolves on Mech’s 1974 ASM list did not qualify as separate subspecies, he agreed yet nothing changed. During the two decades before Canadian wolves were transplanted into Idaho and Yellowstone Park, Department of Interior solicitors (lawyers) changed the number of listed Gray Wolf subspecies to from five to only a single species.

Citizens often asked, “If there is only one or even a handful of grey wolf subspecies and biologists say there are up to 65,000 in North America, why are they endangered?” The vague answer was, “They create healthy ecosystems.”

Wolf/Dog Hybrids Officially Not Protected

In 1996 FWS began promoting a proposed rule to protect wolf hybrids if the hybrid’s actions and appearance resemble the parent that is being protected. But the proposal was never finalized so FWS withdrew it in February of 2001, and issued an official statement that wolf/dog hybrids would never be protected.

Throughout the West, that official position on wolf hybrids has been more or less adhered to. For example in Montana in 2006, two sheep ranchers in the Jordan, area experienced heavy adult ewe losses plus about a 60% reduction in their lamb crop.

When the predator was verified to be a wolf, they each filed claims exceeding $20,000 in losses. But a DNA test reported it was a hybrid and neither claim was paid.

Further proof of biologists’ objection to the existence of hybrid wolves in the wild was seen in the NE corner of Washington State in March of 2014.

After learning that a large sheep guard dog had climbed a seven-foot “non-climbable” orchard fence twice to be with two female wolves in heat, Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife biologists used a helicopter and a dart gun to capture the two radio-collared wolves to see if either wolf was pregnant. One pregnancy was confirmed, and WDFW Large Carnivore Manager Donny Martorello explained to the media that spaying her immediately was a better choice than trying to catch and kill all of the pups later after they were born.

But if the second female wolf was bred by the guard dog near the end of her estrous cycle, not enough time had passed for either ultrasound or blood tests to determine possible pregnancy. And what about other female wolves in heat where there are no high fences to keep them from mingling with other tame dogs?

Genetic Identification Required to Prove It’s a Wolf

X-Rays of a 97-pound wolf-like carcass found on private property and reported by a rancher in Oregon’s Grande Ronde Valley in March of 2012 did not establish the cause of death. An Oregon newspaper article later claimed that if DNA tests showed it was a wolf-dog hybrid, it was perfectly legal for an Oregon landowner or his/her agent to kill it. But if it contained only wolf genes, killing it was a “Class A” misdemeanor punishable by a maximum sentence of one year in Jail and a maximum fine of $6,250.

Six weeks later, on May 3, 2012, newspapers from Maine to Oregon carried versions of the same story. A reported necropsy (autopsy) of the carcass by IDFG at Idaho’s Wildlife Health Lab in Caldwell, Idaho determined the death was caused by a “person” committing “a criminal act.”

On July 12, 2012 the Oregon State Police issued a bulletin that University of Idaho DNA testing proved it was a gray wolf that originated from the Imnaha, Oregon Pack, and solicited information about the killing from the public.

We see other “news” stories describing incidents in the West that match one of the three examples cited above. Yet with all of the opportunities wolf biologists have to collect samples for molecular DNA analysis, none appear willing to provide that information to the citizens who pay for management.

“Distinct Population” Wolf Designation by FWS – An Attempt to Cover up Extinction and Wolf Hybrids

By 2003, it was obvious to FWS that the New England wolf subspecies it had listed as endangered no longer existed. And once the word got out concerning the listed Great Lakes wolf subspecies that was now a crossbred mixture of Canadian and U.S. wolves and western coyotes including some dog genes, the mess it had created needed a quick solution.

Although FWS had proposed to list the Great Lakes and Northeastern wolves as separate small “Distinct Population Segments” in 2000, in 2003 it decided to try to “solve” the mushrooming mess it had created by down-listing all gray wolves in most of the lower 48 states. To do this, it proposed changing “Subspecies” gray wolf designations to the following three “DPSs” in the April 1, 2003 Federal Register:

1. Eastern Gray Wolf DPS – included all states in the East and Midwest, except for all or parts of 16 southern and eastern states that gray wolves reportedly did not occupy historically.

2. Western Gray Wolf DPS – included the remaining states in the West.

3. Southwestern Gray Wolf DPS – included the endangered Wolves in Mexico and small portions of Arizona, New Mexico and Texas.

Wolf Activists’ Proposal Rejected by FWS

In that same Federal Register, FWS proposed that all of the gray wolves in the Eastern and Western DPSs that were still listed as “Endangered” would be downgraded to “Threatened”, with the intention to de-list them next. Wolf activists, who had been pretty much “calling the shots” in return for their support, told FWS they would not sue if it agreed to restore the separate 2000 DPS proposal to recover the Northeastern Timber Wolf.

FWS responded that the few “wolf-like” animals that were occasionally seen in the Northeast were either: dogs, coyotes, or wolf hybrids. It refused to return to its 2000 proposal so the activists sued.

Federal Courts in Oregon and Vermont Voided the FWS Scheme with Its Large DPSs

In 2005, two Federal District Court Judges, first in Oregon and eight months later in Vermont, sided with the Plaintiffs (wolf activists). They found that in 1978 FWS had used its authority to declare that gray wolves were endangered throughout their former range in at least 21 Eastern states and all or portions of 19 states in the West.

They also found that the FWS had not used sound science in creating the two large DPSs, but was using them as an excuse to illegally downlist and then delist gray wolves in most of the “Lower 48” states.
Both courts found that by claiming that gray wolf recovery in three Great Lakes states and three Northern Rocky Mountain states satisfied the FWS requirement for restoring the gray wolves in all 40 or so states where it had listed them as “Endangered,” was a willful action to ignore the ESA.

FWS argued the ESA did not require it to restore wolves where they no longer existed. Yet it had claimed just the opposite in the 1978 Federal Register when it suddenly listed nonexistent gray wolves as “Endangered” in more than two million square miles of the Lower 48.

At the risk of losing the readers I am trying to reach with an article that is too long for many to read in one sitting, it has been suggested that I cite examples of nearly 50 years of wolf research reports, Federal Registers and news releases to provide undisputed facts needed in order to understand and correct “the mess” that exists.

The Mess FWS Created – and Congress Approved

References to “The mess FWS created” began when Congress passed the Endangered Species Protection Act of 1966. In 1967 FWS decided to restore two subspecies of grey wolves that it said already existed in the Northern Rockies and the Great Lakes area.

In 1974, following passage of the new Endangered Species Act, FWS listed two wolf subspecies as endangered in five states, and as threatened in Minnesota. In 1976 it added two more subspecies, the so-called “red wolf” in the Southeast, and a gray wolf that reportedly had existed in Texas.

But in 1978 it suddenly ignored subspecies and listed the Gray Wolf as endangered in all but Minnesota in the lower 48 States. Declaring that extinct wolves have been “endangered” in the Lower 48 States for the past 37 years, yet with no chance to recover the non-hybrid wolf species that became extinct, is the mess with no solution that FWS created and Congress tacitly approved.

McClure, No Wolf Protection Outside of Core Areas

Idaho’s late U.S. Senator Jim McClure voted yes on all of the FWS wolf proposals and in 1988 he told the media, “Wolves are a natural part of an ecosystem that will function better with their presence.” But despite reports indicating there were already wolf packs and reproduction in both Idaho and Montana, FWS still had not submitted its revised plan to transplant Canadian wolves just into Yellowstone National Park.

In April 1990 McClure authored a bill to introduce a nonessential experimental population of wolves into YNP, and into core areas in Glacier National Park and the Idaho wilderness areas. It would have imported three breeding pairs in each location and removed all wolves from listing (protection) outside of those three core areas.

His legislation was strongly supported by wolf supporters in the media, and by most of the wolf activist groups, including Defenders of Wildlife. Although a few objected to the initial introduction of only three breeding pairs in each core area, they boldly publicized the fact that this could easily be increased later if it became necessary.

Ranchers, hunters and legislators in Idaho and Wyoming did not trust the McClure bill despite the fact it only protected wolves inside the boundaries of three small core wolf areas. McClure’s Wolf Bill failed to pass but it provided FWS with the incentive to introduce wolves, but without McClure’s citizen protection outside of core areas.

A New Committee with a New Federal Wolf Plan

In Nov. of 1990, Congress directed appointment of a federal Wolf Management Committee, composed of three Federal and three State members plus four members representing special interests, to develop a new FWS plan for wolf introduction in Yellowstone Park and the Central Idaho wilderness areas. Most of those Committee members, including Idaho Fish and Game Director Jerry Conley, strongly supported severe FWS penalties for anyone who even threw a rock in the direction of wolves attacking their livestock!

As with all such committees representing diverse interests, the few members who disagreed with the extreme penalties and could not be convinced to support them were simply outvoted by the carefully chosen majority. Once the FWS plan was approved, Conley hired fledgling Montana wolf biologist Jon Rachael to help him convince Idaho’s 7-member Wolf Oversight Committee to copy the new FWS wolf plan in an Idaho Wolf Plan.

Conley also hired Montana biologist Jerome Hansen, a co-author of the 1984 Kaminski-Hansen Idaho wolf-prey study, and assigned him to help Rachael provide its 10-year-old deer and elk population statistics to the FWS Wolf Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).

Wolf Oversight Committee and FWS Wolf Leader Ed Bangs Refused to Correct Exaggerated Prey Claims
Massive Central Idaho mule deer and elk losses resulted from sustained over-harvesting during the 10 years following the 1984 Kaminski-Hansen research, and from IDFG refusal to use its dedicated emergency feeding fund properly during the extreme 1992-93 winter. But instead of using current 1993 and 1994 helicopter counts in the Wolf EIS, Idaho biologists used the 10-year-old information that was now grossly inaccurate.

As chairman of the Boise County Wildlife and Endangered Species Committee, I presented IDFG, FWS and the Idaho Wolf Oversight Committee (WOC) with IDFG records showing the radical decline in the average total deer and elk density by 1993. But instead of complying with our request to halt the excessive harvest, IDFG added another 2,150 bonus deer permits and 3,955 bonus elk permits to 1993 Idaho hunting seasons.
And instead of correcting the Wolf EIS, as we requested in both 1993 and 1994, FWS and the IDFG biologists continued to publish the much larger figures from the 1984 study – claiming they were from 1994.

WOC Member Clower Told Us Lying was Justified

On Feb. 17, 1994, WOC member Don Clower arranged a meeting with Vice-Chairman Sandy Donley and me an hour before we were scheduled to testify before Rep. Golden Linford’s House Resources Committee. He told us Linford had suggested he come and talk to us (not verified) and Clower asked us not to air F&G’s “dirty linen” at the hearing.

In response to our questions, he said the WOC was aware that the deer and elk populations in the EIS were highly exaggerated. But he claimed that was necessary to “support” the rapid build-up of wolves that would occur in the FWS Nonessential Experimental Recovery option.

Both Clower and retired Boise Forest Supervisor Jack Lavin were appointed to the WOC by Conley. On March 19, 1994, WOC Co-Chairman Lavin sent a letter to FWS Wolf Team Leader Ed Bangs stating, “We would prefer wolf introduction with experimental status to no wolf introduction…”

In the August 16, 1994 Federal Register Bangs wrote: “Millions of acres of public lands contain hundreds of thousands of wild ungulates (Service 1994) and currently provide more than enough habitat to support a recovered wolf population in central Idaho.”

On Sept. 27, 1994 during the final FWS hearing on its plan to transplant Canadian wolves into Idaho, I spent an intermission with Bangs asking him to explain why he wrote “…contain hundreds of thousands of wild ungulates (Service 1994)” when he had proof it had not been true for 10 years – if ever. He responded that Congress had not yet approved funding for transplanting Canadian wolves, and said if it learned there were not enough elk and deer to maintain 100+ wolves, it would not fund the transplant.

Conley’s Written Support of the Strict FWS Wolf Plan and Permit Approving Five Years of Wolf Transplants Gave FWS Permission to Release Wolves in Idaho

At the same Sept. 27, 1994 FWS hearing by Bangs, IDFG Director Conley brazenly violated I. C. Sec. 36-107 by secretly providing Bangs with a signed and dated letter stating:

“For the record I would like to take this time to acknowledge our support for the Experimental Rules on proposed establishment of nonessential, experimental populations of gray wolves in central Idaho and Yellowstone National Park. Specifically, a nonessential, experimental population area would be established in Idaho through regulation by the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) under section 10(j) of the Endangered Species Act. In accordance with the Experimental Rule, we will work with the FWS, to the extent allowed by Idaho law, to reintroduce wolves from British Columbia and/or Alberta into the Idaho experimental population area.

“If you have any questions regarding this matter, please don’t hesitate to call me or one of my staff working on the wolf recovery program.”

A permit addressed to Bangs on that same day, authorized the release of a maximum of 15 wolves per year for up to five years from B.C. or Alberta, Canada at jointly agreeable Idaho release sites. It was signed and dated under Conley’s typewritten name and title by F&G Wildlife Bureau Chief Tom Reinecker.

Conley Approved the Strict Plan He Helped Write

In other words, Conley signed unconditional Idaho approval of a federal wolf plan that allowed penalties of up to a $50,000 fine and/or one year in the penitentiary for ranchers who committed any one of multiple “offenses” they were not allowed to use to protect their livestock from “nonessential experimental” wolves in the act of killing them – even on their private property.

The Plan’s refusal to compensate ranchers for livestock killed by wolves, or for reduced calf production and decline in weight gains from stress caused by wolves, was an obvious “taking” without compensation. And the candid admission by FWS biologists that there were more than 60,000 gray wolves in Canada and Alaska indicate they were neither endangered nor threatened.

The FWS Wolf Plan that Conley helped draft in 1990 also ignored the rural citizen protections that were part of the previous proposal. This became obvious when official requests from Ada, Owyhee and Boise Counties for inclusion of protections in the Idaho Wolf Plan were rejected by Jon Rachael, and publicly ridiculed by Don Clower.

Boise County Got Protection for Other Animals

But our County Endangered Species Committee continued to insist that other domestic animals (e.g. fowl, swine, goats, etc.) and pets (i.e. dogs or cats) on private land receive the same degree of protection as other livestock (i.e. cattle, sheep, horses and mules).

The FWS Final Rule published in the Federal Register on Nov. 22, 1994 included statements that a wolf attack on domestic animals taking place on private property twice within a one year period, after five or six breeding pairs of wolves had been documented, would result in declaring it as a problem wolf and it would be removed from the area. Another attack by the same wolf would result in removal from the wild or killing.

Today, with wolves delisted, owners or agents of domestic animals including pets have authority to kill wolves that present a threat to their animals on private property without obtaining permission from any agency.

Idaho Citizens and Their Elected Representatives Knew That F&G Officials Strongly Supported Recovery

It was no secret to anyone involved in the wolf issue, including Idaho legislators, that every IDFG official at the state or regional level strongly supported wolf recovery. That is why the Idaho Legislature included the following language in Idaho Code Sec. 36-715 in 1988, “Duties of the department of fish and game regarding the endangered species act:

“(1) Since wolf-dog hybridizations are known to exist in Idaho—and are not protected by the U.S. endangered species act, a biological evaluation shall be required of the animal to determine priority before IDFG may take action in accordance with the United States ESA.

(2) The department of fish and game shall not be authorized to expend funds, transfer assets, or enter into a cooperative agreement with any agency, department or entity of the U.S. government concerning wolves unless expressly authorized by state statute.

“(3) If a wolf is sighted, the burden of proof concerning the reported presence of a wolf within Idaho shall rest with the observer and the IDFG shall take no action to enforce the U.S. ESA regarding wolves in the absence of that proof.” concerning the reported presence of a wolf within Idaho shall rest with the observer and the IDFG shall take no action to enforce the U.S. ESA regarding wolves in the absence of that proof.”

Although the language restricting IDFG from participating in wolf management was eventually removed to support the legislature’s 2002 Idaho Wolf Plan, creation of the Governor’s “Office of Species Conservation” in 2000 gave the authority to negotiate ESA agreements with federal agencies to OSC – not to IDFG. It also required IDFG to work with the OSC Administrator – the primary voice in endangered species management decisions.

In other words, IDFG officials have not had legal authority to do what Conley and Reinecker did without legislative or OSC approval since early 1988 – nearly seven years before they committed the illegal acts.

Bombshell by Three of Seven WOC Voting Members Was Too Late to Undo Conley Letters to FWS

Copies of Conley’s letter to Bangs were sent to the members of the Wolf Oversight Committee. After a majority of four voting members declined to challenge his illegal actions, the minority of three voting and one non-voting member sent a strongly-worded four-page letter to the Gray Wolf Reintroduction HQ in Helena, Montana.

It was signed by WOC Co-Chairman George Bennett and by members Ted Hoffman, DVM, Stan Boyd, Idaho Woolgrowers, and non-voting member Lois VanHoover from the Independent Miners Association.

The letter stated that many hunters and hunter organizations had contacted them and expressed bitter opposition to the proposed plan because it allowed a wildlife experiment with the potential to plunder Idaho ungulate herds with no certain controls on the results. No provision was made for reversal in the event of excessive wolf numbers, and the assumption was made that wolf recovery is desirable contrary to historical outcomes.

The letter also stated the four signers’ belief that the proposed rule was illegal, failing to fulfill the requirements of Sec. 6 of the ESA which required cooperation with the states to the maximum extent practicable, and Sec. 17 50 CFR which required agreement to the maximum extent practicable.

It charged that the consultation and cooperation by FWS has been inadequate or nonexistent. It listed two pages of deficiencies that must be corrected to prevent the four WOC members from recommending to Idaho legislators that they reject the FWS proposal and retain the existing language in I.C. Sec. 36-715 that prohibited the IDFG from participating in any wolf recovery activities without approval of the legislature.

Their letter said they would urge the legislature to further prohibit any state agency from any activity supporting the federal wolf recovery effort and that also happened when FWS ignored their request. At that point, FWS NRM Wolf Recovery Official Ed Bangs had the consent he needed from Idaho to introduce Canadian wolves, but the opportunity to get Congressional funding was apparently lost.

FWS whistle-blower Jim Beers, whose past duties included apportioning the Pittman-Robertson funding to the states, later testified twice to Congress that FWS stole $45-$60 million of P-R excise taxes from the states and used part of the stolen money to fund the trapping and transplanting of Canadian wolves into Idaho and YNP.

Reader Seeks Proof and Takes It to Post Falls Commission Meeting to Get Answers

When one of my Outdoorsman articles reported the restriction in Idaho Code Sec. 36-715(2) prohibiting IDFG from entering into any cooperative agreement with any federal agency concerning wolves, and discussed the illegal letter and permit written by Conley, a reader from North Idaho sent me a letter asking if I had proof of this.

I mailed him photocopies of the documents and he brought them to the next F&G Commission hearing in Post Falls, demanding an explanation of why Conley was allowed to disobey the law. When former Director Steve Mealey was hired to replace Conley who was forced to resign, he explained why Idaho would not have wolves if Conley had not authorized FWS to bring them here.

But Mealey was no longer living in Idaho so F&G Commissioner Randy Budge, a lawyer, claimed that Idaho was going to get wolves anyway “because they were forced on us by the federal government.” He had already tried that excuse in testimony before the House Resources Committee but Rep. JoAn Wood firmly corrected him.

Yet during the January 2010 Commission meeting, Budge insisted the information provided by citizens at two previous hearings was not accurate and encouraged his fellow Commissioners to have a fact sheet to distribute before each hearing “proving” the charges were inaccurate.

Commissioner Wheeler Sets the Record Straight

At that point Commissioner Cameron Wheeler said, “I’d like to shed a little light on it. There was a document signed by Conley at that time and I’ve read it and I know a couple of Commissioners that were on the Commission at that time – they did not give him the authority to do that, but it was signed and I’ve seen it – several legislators got it. So that’s where this comes from.

“You can like it or not like it, but that’s the truth. The feds had to have some agency that was willing to put their ‘John Henry’ on it, that’s what he did. It’ll never die.”

Commissioner Wheeler was asked, “Cameron, was the agreement that he signed they were going to introduce them whether we like it or not and so this was an agreement we will participate in management?” Wheeler responded: “No. The agreement that he signed was an agreement to cooperate in the introduction.”

None of the other Commissioners had any personal knowledge of the history of wolf recovery but despite Wheeler’s explanation of the facts to them, three insisted on handing out a “fact” sheet with limited information before each public meeting to stop the public from lambasting the Commission – rather than admitting what actually happened.

Another Commissioner asked Wheeler, “So you agree that perhaps more disclosure might be best – and state all the facts – put as much sunshine on it as we can – and present that and live with it as a principle rather than, as Randy said, try to not necessarily hide it but to disclose less than the whole story?”
Groen interrupted Wheeler before he could answer and proceeded to verbally attack the individuals and groups who brought the issue up and said they weren’t interested in hearing facts. Trying to prevent full disclosure which could also have incriminated him, Groen said:

“And regarding that letter that came up at Post Falls – what that letter was, it states that we did not want to get ‘em (i.e. wolves) and we stood strong there for when they were ready to be put in no matter what. It was a letter that would keep our authority and the Director at that time signed that letter – I guess you’d call it, Jim, a ‘Transport Permit’ or whatever – and it was ‘kinda’ just to try to keep our hands in it.”

A small part of Groen’s claim was partly true concerning the desire to keep “their authority” – but they had absolutely no authority for years – only responsibility to assist in preparation of an Idaho Wolf Plan. The claim that Conley’s letter stated that F&G did not want to get wolves was simply a lie.

I’m Not Real Sure We Want to Get in the Way of Truth

During the years that I attended Commission meetings, I often watched a similar scenario unfold. With the exception of Directors Greenley and Mealey, every Director or Acting Director manipulated the Commission to pass only those rules supported by IDFG, and quickly did whatever was necessary, including lying, to change the discussion if it appeared to be headed the wrong way.

Groen was brought to Idaho by Conley to organize and operate the Idaho chapter of The Nature Conservancy’s “NatureServe” international data base of Endangered and Threatened species. More than half of the total cost was paid for with license fees or excise tax dollars from hunters and the name was changed from “Natural Heritage Program” to “Natural Resource Policy Division” to make it sound more like a legitimate bureau hunters would support.

Wheeler stated, “The decision (by IDFG to help introduce wolves) really runs deep into the fiber of both the sportsmen and policy makers of this state.” He questioned use of a document on sportsmen who come to Commission meetings and said, “I’m not real sure that we want to get in the way of the truth.”

But, without bringing it up as a motion to be voted on, Commissioners Tony McDermott and Budge insisted the handout was a good idea and Chairman Wayne Wright directed Groen to prepare the handout advising they would use it with discretion.

Yet the minutes concerning consideration of the wolf testimony the following morning contained only two sentences:

1. “Comments about wolves and elk and the frustration people are feeling.”

2. “There is concern on inaccurate information from the public regarding wolves; suggestions of a fact statement regarding the history of wolves to be read at the beginning of a Commission meeting.”

In the next issue of The Outdoorsman – No. 38 – I published photocopies of Conley’s letter and permit, the appropriate Code Section prohibiting what he did, and part of the 4-page letter from the minority of Wolf Oversight Committee members citing the numerous requirements for protection of citizens that were ignored by FWS and IDFG.

F&G responded in its “Wolf Management/Status Timeline online by listing abbreviated comments regarding Idaho Code changes that confuse – rather than enlighten. Then it provided links to Conley’s Sept. 27, 1994 letter to Bangs emphasizing that IDFG will work with FWS “only” to the extent allowed by Idaho Law, to reintroduce wolves into Idaho under the experimental population rules.

Do people not realize that the entire letter violated Idaho law?

And the link to the Special Permit signed by Tom Reinecker says it was a courtesy by IDFG issued in accordance with state law and with the Idaho Wolf Plan currently being drafted by IDFG and the WOC.

In my opinion that is similar to a banker who is charged by law with protecting his depositors’ money, giving a permit to a gang of thieves to come in once a year and rob the bank.

There was no mention in the Permit of a plan “being drafted.” In fact a state wolf plan was not approved by the Idaho Legislature until 7-1/2 years later. Yet instead of admitting it violated Idaho law in its Timeline, IDFG blames the legislature and, by inference, the minority members of the Wolf Oversight Committee for the fact that it did not get to “manage” wolves sooner.

Even after Conley was forced to resign, given six months severance pay and hired as Director of the Missouri Conservation Dept., his co-conspirators in IDFG continued to sacrifice elk and deer to protect wolves and promote non-consumptive wildlife recreation. During the past nine years 11 IDFG Department heads, including Ex-Deputy Director Jim Unsworth and Sharon Kiefer, have taken a special nine-month course including two weeks at the FWS MAT training center in Shepherdstown W. Va.

They are now part of an “elite” national team of “NCLI Fellows” you will read about in The Outdoorsman.

“Egregious” Letter to the Editor

A recent Letter to the Editor in a Portland, Maine newspaper, called hunting practices “egregious.” Egregious is defined as, “outstandingly bad; shocking.” The same can be said for letters to the editor of newspapers that are outstandingly bad at relating facts, exemplifying truth and presenting non emotional realities of real life in the forests and our backyards.

This particular letter states: “the use of dogs and snares, are cruel and unnecessary methods in hunting bear.”

Snares are as humane as it can get. The wildlife managers all across America use snares for capturing bears, and other wildlife, for wildlife research. The reason this is done is because the work and collection of data can be done without harming the animal. Non thinking people project human emotions and human feelings onto animals believing there is no difference between the two species. They have effectively been brainwashed.

I am wondering if this letter writer ever considered how bears, elk, deer, moose and many, many other species “feel” when wild dogs (wolves and coyotes) run these animals to death? Have they ever considered this reality? By their way of not thinking, shouldn’t we then propose a bill to prohibit the chasing of wild animals by wild dogs? After all, it must be inhumane. Animals are just like human beings aren’t they? And if that is so, then why isn’t their a law against inhumane killing of one animal upon another?

It must also be inhumane to allow wildlife, like bears to go untouched; allow nature, the cruel bitch that she can be, provide her “balance” by utilizing disease, starvation and cannibalism to place population densities in severe ups and downs.

The letter also states: “Time and again, any effort to improve the humane treatment of our wildlife has been thwarted by members of the Inland Wildlife and Fisheries Committee…” The author’s perverted ideas of what is “humane treatment of our wildlife” is simply balderdash of emotional nonsense never substantiated by fact.

The insanity that has gripped this nation is actually what is egregious. The very thought that humans are now programmed to go about destroying my right to self determination because of perverted religious quackery of placing human elements on animals is beyond egregious. It can only be described as hatred toward a fellow human being. And we know from whence comes hatred.

And the hatred is so intense that the blindness prohibits the reality that their insane practices results in the destruction of other wildlife as I’ve described above. It also breeds scarcity. Scarcity breeds more hate and greed, sickness, oppression and destitution. The insanity is that the truth cannot be seen and thus their destruction becomes self.

USFWS Plans to Kill Thousands of Birds to Save Fish

“The plan, in the form of a final Environmental Impact Statement, is under review. If it gets final approval, state agriculture workers could be shooting birds and oiling nests, a process used to keep chicks from hatching, by spring.

The plan is preferred over another alternative that calls for the killing of 18,000 birds by 2018, U.S. Army Corps spokeswoman Diana Fredlund said.

“This is a difficult situation,” she said. “We are trying to balance the salmon and steelhead vs. the birds. It’s very difficult to find the right answer and so it’s taken us a long time. We’ve had a lot of experts working on it.””<<<Read More>>>

Scrap the Endangered Species Act? What Took So Long?

Owls

WHO?

It was October 1, 2007 when this writer, sometimes alone on a remote island, exclaimed that it was time to abolish the Endangered Species Act. I began that piece by saying:

The Endangered Species Act is unconstitutional. It is nothing more than a strong arm tool used by out of control animal rights groups and power hungry administrators. It strips Americans of their constitutional rights and is probably doing our wildlife more harm than good in many ways.

And yet, here we are over 7 years later and absolutely nothing has been done about the Endangered Species Act. I have written about the ESA many times, often describing it as the most powerful and destructive law ever devised. This is mostly true because of the unreasonable restrictions, regulations and seizures of rights and property ever levied upon American individuals, while at the same time possessing a success rate that is abysmal.

In a free E-book I wrote, “The Crippling and Destructive Power of the Endangered Species Act,” I described the law as:

The Endangered Species Act of 1973 is a draconian law that offers no flexibility, ruling out any semblance of common sense; strips states of their sovereign right to manage and care for their own flora and fauna; denies property owners of the right to use their land for the pursuit of life, liberty and happiness; allows for the destruction of the country’s economic well being; and abdicates this nation’s sovereignty to International powers, to name a few.

Today, in a Townhall.com article, written by Taylor Smith of the Heartland Institute, many of the very exact same things I wrote about in 2007 are brought to the forefront for discussion as to why she believes it is Time to Endanger the Endangered Species Act.

Smith claims that, as we saw when Congress passed Obamacare, when Congress passed the Endangered Species Act and President Nixon signed it into law, nobody in Congress had a clue as to what was in the bill. With my ever growing disdain for all politicians and the growing proof that few do their jobs, tell the truth or even have a clue as to what truth might be, I think that probably Congress did pass a bill in which most had no clue. But just as important, I believe there were enough of the “connected insiders” that knew exactly what was in that bill and perhaps a handful of others that did know were threatened in order to keep their mouths shut. That is the power of the Environmental Movement.

We see evidence each and everyday of a growing number of disgruntled Americans of Endangered Species Act fallout. This becomes very important to people when the effects of environmentalism hit at home. While some of us worked diligently with lawmakers to see about getting effective amendments to the ESA, and while progress was being made, those with less patience derailed our efforts and instead opted to take the route once taken in Tennessee with the Telico Dam, and got Congress to pass a budget bill with a “rider” attached that would effectively exempt gray wolves in Idaho and Montana from ESA protection along with preventing any further lawsuits against the action. Is this how we want to do business? That legal door swings in at least two directions.

What I find troubling in the Townhall article is the suggested remedy for some of the ESA problems. There is a call for a governmental program where money will be used to pay private landowners for their losses when government steals their lands and rights on that land in order to protect species and species habitat. What could possibly go wrong? It is wrong for government to practice “illegal takings” without compensation. This effort might help in reducing public ill feelings toward the Endangered Species Act, but like with most issues these days, does nothing to take a bite out of the real problems of the ESA.

Just the other day I was watching an interview with Thomas Sowell. In that interview, Sowell points out that after the Stock Market crash of 1929, it wasn’t until after President Roosevelt forced his socialistic welfare programs onto the American people that unemployment skyrocketed and the economy went to hell. This is the problem with government.

When you take a law like the ESA and have it administered by government, a government that is corrupt in addition to using non governmental organizations, many of which are environmental puppets of government, the effort becomes tyrannical in nature.

Government never solves government’s problems!

Scrap the ESA, seriously amend the Equal Access to Justice Act, and place ALL management of wildlife in the hands of the states. Reasonable protection of species, as described in the ESA, does not place that effort above the needs of human existence. What is wrong with us?