April 30, 2017

Isle Royale’s Reversal of Global Warming

If we listen to those who assume the high ground and are the only bearers of “Best Available Science” we are told that moose are struggling to survive in several places across the country and it’s all, directly or indirectly, being caused by global warming.

We learn that the wolf population on Isle Royale has, for all intent and purposes, killed itself off for various reasons. Because the wolves are gone, the moose population is “undergoing a population explosion.”

But don’t think for a moment it is exploding because there’s only two wolves left alive. No, no! It must be that somehow, the two remaining wolves have “magically,” as their magic has no bounds, reversed the effects of global warming and thus are growing more moose to kill and eat. According to the same “High-Grounders” because there are now more moose, the result of the wolves’ magic, more magic will take place in that wolves will rebound because there is more food. Seeing all those moose causes their reproductive organs to go bonkers. Let’s hope the wolves aren’t too busy moving rivers to save the birds. And even though disease and inbreeding killed the wolves, we know the moose have no diseases and there are no “weak and sickly” ones left because the moose magically took care of that.

Maybe it’s time that we look very closely at these magical moose such that Al Gore can spread them across the entire planet to spare us all from the devastation of global warming. Maybe they will even magically kill the sickly and weak among the people. Think of the money we could save.

Why Would Anyone Protect and Perpetuate Mixed-Breed Wild Dogs in Our Forests?

Now that Roxanne Quimby got her land designated as a national monument, the push is now on to turn the rest of northwestern Maine into useless, inaccessible wasteland some like to call “wilderness.”

As part of this push for locking up land, comes the ignorant belief that wolves are a magic formula needed to carry out the false theory that “Nature” balances itself. Unfortunately we will never get rid of that lie because it became a very powerful tool when it was criminally used to introduce wolves into the Greater Yellowstone area, for personal and monetary gain. Even since the man who invented the false claim has rescinded his theory, the echo chambers of the media, along with environmental useful idiots, continue to perpetuate the fantasy because they want to and need to. It’s that simple.

However, aside from all of this banter about whether or not wolves walk on water and whether or not land should be locked up and called wilderness, there can be serious argument made that in the Lower 48 States, there does not exist a “pure” wolf or a coyote for that matter.

In an article found in the Bangor Daily News, it begins, “WSCH 6’s Bill Green reported this week that a new wolf-coyote hybrid “thrives” in Maine.”

If this is true, and there exists studies that tell us that the wild dogs found in most of the northeast section of country are of a mixed breed of wolf, coyote and domestic dog and any and all canine breeds and mixtures. One would imagine that that mixture is all over the place as, by now, cross-bred wild dogs have mated with other cross-bred wild dogs, and so it goes.

Do these wild dogs “thrive” in Maine, as Bill Green states? Reports vary, some stating that Maine has a “coyote” (hybrid) population in excess of 20,000. Thriving? It would seem that way to me, especially when you consider that it was only in my childhood days – 1960s – that rumors were spreading about “coyotes” showing up in places in the Pine Tree State. Maine never had a viable population of “coyotes” until it began to grow in the 1960s, due to expansion of populations – probably already some kind of add-mixture of wild dog.

Some claim this cross-breeding (media and others like to call the offspring a hybrid) is a natural phenomenon but is it?

Also found in this article is the following statement: “When Europeans began to colonize the United States, wolves were abundant throughout the country.” What does that mean precisely? What is the term “abundant” one’s weighted perception? It appears Bill Green and I “perceive” that a mixed-breed of wild dog “thrives” in Maine. Those who see any dog, wild or domestic, in vast quantities, as something that should be perpetuated, wouldn’t see 20,000 coyotes/cross-breeds as thriving or abundant. But, what about science….real science?

Most certain, the settlers who came before us, learned quickly that large predators in the woods were dangerous and competed with them for, not only their livestock, but for other wild game that was necessary for survival. And thus they killed these wild predators whenever they could. Shouldn’t they have?

But were these wolves “abundant” when the settlers arrived? Bearing in mind the term “abundant,” perhaps the best way to learn about this is to recall the historic accounts, often found in hunters’ and trappers’ journals, including such recordings as those of Lewis and Clark, and names such as Smith, Ogden, Sublette, Work, Meek, Freemont, Preuss, Simpson and Egan. After all, they were the ones on the land even before the settlers.

Most of their journals tell a quite different story of “abundance.” With the exception of some localized areas, west of the Mississippi, both game and wolves were scarce. Explorers, through what is now the Yellowstone Basin, comment that they never heard wolves or coyotes howl. There was little game to be found, and often these explorers, unable to find game to sustain themselves, resorted to killing and eating horse meat. Lewis and Clark experienced the same thing finding themselves trading with the Indians for their domestic dogs to eat in order to survive. From my perspective, that does not describe what I would call an abundance of anything, except perhaps hunger.

Science shows us that natural segregation, often achieved through natural landscape barriers, and population limits found in widespread outbreaks of disease, kept species like wild canines apart in order that cross-breeding was not a common thing. We have learned that the Native Americans knew about wolves and the trouble they caused. Not all Indians worshiped the wolf or found some kind of spiritual guidance or direction from them. The natives deliberately cross-bred certain domesticated dogs with wild dogs in hopes of creating a better hunting animal.

Teddy Roosevelt wrote extensively of his travels, often describing the different looks and sizes of wild dogs he encountered. Roosevelt was one of the first to write about the big “timber wolves” that seemed to exist only beyond the high mountains of what is now known as the Sasquatch Range. What coyotes there were, existed down on the plains.

Common sense should tell us that if we are interested in protecting a wolf or a coyote, we should be doing our best to insure that the two species are not forced into the same habitats where cross-breeding would become even more common, thus mixing the species and destroying the wolf or coyote genes. People, often in their greed and animal perversions, insist on seeing these animals from their cars and out the back windows of their houses. This is a great formula for the destruction of, not only wolves and coyotes, but many other species due to predation and disease.

Granted this effort of segregation becomes a more difficult task with a growing population of man, but protecting the populations of wild wolves and coyotes to numbers that are historically higher than when the settlers first arrived, thinking we are doing great things for the animals, is all wrong.

Even many who would concur that there are “hybrid” wild dogs living throughout Maine and other areas of the country, seem to only care about protecting whatever the cross-bred creature is that exists for the moment. Our own U.S. Government seems to share that same belief.

In attempts to perpetuate wild dogs in the Desert Southwest and in the Southeast, government agents knowingly and illegally introduced real hybrid semi-wild dogs. This is not only illegal but a violation of the Endangered Species Act. What are we doing?

If Maine and other regions are now dealing with “thriving” populations of hybrid wild dogs, there’s a reason for that. The worst thing we can do is perpetuate this cross-breed. If we want to protect the wolf and the coyote, we should be doing all we can to rid the landscape of these hybrid, invasive species. Not only do the genes of wild canines become mixed up, but what also changes with the cross-mixture is behavior – behavior that is most often unpredictable. This adds to the issue of public safety.

To argue that Maine should have wolves is one thing. To make the claim that what the Government and others who are suggesting introduction is actually a pure wolf is foolishness. Perhaps the only wolf that resembles a pure wolf exists in the wilderness regions far to our north, where they belong. These are not indigenous to Maine. Introduction of such a beast, or any kind of add-mixture, semi-wild dogs, calling them wolves, is a violation of the law and should not be tolerated…that is if we actually care about protecting real wolves.

*Note* – I provided few links in this writing. I have written extensively on this subject, including a book. You can use the search function of this website to find more information about most everything I have written in this article.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Stupid!

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

So, here you are stuck with me.

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

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

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

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

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

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

feces containing partially digested meat.

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

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

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

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

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

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

Hydatid Disease (2):

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

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

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

From Fleas (4) Carried by wolves:

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

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

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

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

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

–          When humans are killed, attacked or injured

–          When disease outbreaks occur

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Is (*?) to say the least.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

–          Mosquitoes (and wolves) are ubiquitous

–          There is no San Diego Yellow Mosquito

–          The environmental organizations and government would look silly.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Jim Beers

8 April 2017

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

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

 

Speaking of Sharks, Grizzly Bears, Wolves, Cougars & Such

*Editor’s Note* – I am reminded of Leviticus 26: vss 14 and 22 –

“But if ye will not hearken unto me, and will not do all these commandments; …..I will also send wild beasts among you, which shall rob you of your children, and destroy your cattle, and make you few in number; and your high ways shall be desolate.”

An article by James Beers

Question:  What do sharks, grizzly bears, wolves, cougars and similar large mammalian predators have in common?

Answer:

1.) They attack, injure and kill humans.

2.) Their presence in locations of human presence varying in density from the lightly inhabited to densely inhabited by humans is rightly controversial.

3.) They compete with humans for renewable natural resources like various marine species from seals to bass, and game animals from moose and elk to antelope utilized for human consumption and recreation like fishing and hunting.

4.) They depress human activities from bathing and biking to hiking and simple day in and day out actions of families and other residents where such animals are allowed to occur.

5.) They depress economic activities from tourism and animal husbandry to pet ownership and all the subsidiary economic activities they spawn thereby shrinking both employment opportunities and local tax revenues that are the lifeblood of both local governance and a political voice for rural residents.

6.) They destroy private property from dogs to cattle.

7.) They are “loved” by mostly urban people and little more than constant problems for rural people and others forced by governments to live with them.

8.) They are political vote fodder for central government politicians forever spending scarce dollars and implementing the laws they are forever passing to “protect” and “save” these “charismatic mega-species”.

9.) They are central-government bureaucrat’s ticket’s to more power and authority (resulting from the manipulation of regulation-writing for all the laws mentioned under # 8); more personnel and bigger budgets leading to increased career opportunities leading to larger retirements and public adulation; and they are an introduction to after-retirement opportunities with the Non-Government environmental Organizations (see # 10 below).

10.) They are the primary tools of the self-aggrandizing “environmental”, animal “rights”, and faux “conservation” lobby groups collecting millions from the general public that they use to “influence” the politicians, woo the bureaucrats, and give the urban population a false sense of doing something “good” while being “involved”.

11.) Too often the government schemes to “save” or “restore” such species are thinly-veiled hidden agendas for other campaigns from population control to gun control and further erosion of local governments and the political voice of rural people and their issues.

Now, lest you think I do not “like” or “want” such animals; I assure you I am committed to their preservation and conservation.  I say this with full recognition of the following:

1.)  These animals DO NOT belong wherever they want to be or where they simply existed 20 or 200 years ago. They belong where their negative impacts are tolerable primarily to those communities that government’s target to coexist with them.

2.)  The formal acceptance by local populations should be a prerequisite of any government protection, introductions or increases of these animals for reasons of both justice and morality.

3.)  While the “public” et al (see the foregoing #’s 7, 8, 9, 10 & 11) knowledge of words like “decreasing”, “endangered”, etc. are rudimentary at best; their rejection of terms  like “too many”, “destructive”, “dangerous”, or “necessary lethal control” are also clouded by bureaucrats, teachers, politicians, and the influence peddlers mentioned under the foregoing # 10.

4.)  The proper and just challenge to preserving and conserving these animals lies not with destroying human society or humans as is happening in Africa and India as I write.

5.)  Lethal controls are necessary and right in areas of human density and activity.  For instance, sharks should be excluded as far as is possible from beaches with moderate to heavy use.  Until the lobby groups or private enterprises come up with a workable and dependable way to exclude dangerous sharks from such beaches in Australia, the US or South Africa or on similar beaches worldwide, that means lethal control.

6.)  As someone living in a country with a $20 TRILLION debt, I do not believe that government funding should be spent by the millions on things that would certainly appear to be no more effective than fladry or electric fences for livestock being ravaged by wolves, or bells being worn by hikers or workers in grizzly bear country.

7.)  Government funds directed toward sharks (like government funds directed toward other mammalian large predators mentioned herein) should be directed toward enactment and enforcement of laws that allow local control in certain areas and protection in other (not all) areas.  Leave it to the Universities and NGO’s to “investigate” “sonar buoys” shark “face recognition”, “electronic and magnetic shark deterrent devices”, and “cameras attached to sharks”.  The government role is to first protect its citizens.

Three years ago I wrote several articles comparing the “conservation” of mammalian and marine predators like sharks, wolves and killer whales.   The two articles below [link (WSJ is a PayWall and link] indicate to me how far astray we have come in just the short time since I wrote those articles.  I submit that we could take this shark article and this grizzly bear article and just use them in the future for the next wolf or cougar attack that kills or maims a human in the US.  For that matter, the next Nile crocodile that kills an African woman doing her wash or an African kid playing by the river; we can use these article by just erasing “shark” or “grizzly bear” and scribbling in “lion” or “tiger” or whatever misunderstood critter evokes our mercy by causing us to equate such animals with hapless humans offered up by the government druids for their notion of what the “ecosystem” should be.

Here are a few comments on what appears in these recent news items.  These items are highlighted in the articles and are not meant to be snide or to condemn either our Australian or Canadian cousins that like us emerged from the British Colonial system.  Truth be told, American concepts of wildlife management, human justice, and rural economic concern are as far or farther astray than either of these articles tell us about Australia or Canada.

1,) “The effort is being closely watched around the world—especially tourism-focused places like Réunion, a French territory whose economy was devastated after sharks killed seven people in recent years.”

Comment: While this is about sharks, the same thing is happening in the Lower 48 US States with forced introduction of grizzly bears (the latest in central Washington state) making de facto wilderness areas due to the danger from the bears as are forced wolf introductions exterminating elk and moose hunting along with ranching and rural residences.  Denying it as we do, fools no one.

2.) “Where some of these species of sharks bite people, it becomes more of a social issue, whether the government should be responsible for the safety of their citizens when they go into the ocean.”

Comment: What chutzpah!  As a former colonial and as a US Constitutional supporter, I can only marvel at any representative government being perceived as neither concerned nor responsible for the safety of their citizenry utilizing THEIR beaches.  Yet, the US government mimics this attitude by their wolf and grizzly bear activities being no one’s responsibility when they go horribly wrong and even California’s government behaving similarly with their sanctification of cougars within that state.

3,) “Record keeping on shark attacks is fragmented and inconsistent,

Comment: See, sharks are just like wolves and grizzly bears.  Nothing is for sure so only the government wizards know the “truth” and thus the courts will believe only them.  For those unfamiliar with this lingo, “fragmented and inconsistent” means you must believe whatever we say it is about “how many”, the “danger” and what to expect or who is responsible. If we say moose and elk disappeared because of “climate change” or that persons or cattle killed by wolves were killed by “undetermined animals, possibly dogs” then by golly that is the truth so move along citizen, there is nothing to see here.

4,) “Thousands of underwater video tapes showing that sharks are much more abundant in northern Australia than in unprotected waters like those surrounding Indonesia—the world’s biggest shark-fishing nation”.

Comment:  What a mysterious assertion.  Could there be a connection?  Can sharks prosper in one place (like Australia) while evidently hammered unmercifully relatively nearby (like Indonesia)?  Could this be duplicated on a scale such as lightly-used Australian beaches v. heavily-used beaches?  Inquiring minds want to know.

5.) People for some reason have a real fear of sharks,” Geoff Harris, the club’s president and a veteran lifesaver, said as he surveyed the town’s deserted white-sand beach one morning. “I think it’s the fear of being eaten by something.”

Comment: Ya’ think?

6.) “But you don’t want to jump to the conclusion that the bear’s hungry and it attacked an individual.  Norris also said it’s “never cut and dry that a bear will be destroyed because it attacked someone.”

Comment:  Indeed, animals have “rights”!  Their motive is important!  You never know when there are extenuating circumstances that justify releasing him or her like Americans are doing with criminal illegal aliens that only return and repeat offenses until they stand accused of homicide.  I am reminded of that satirical Jewish definition of chutzpah being the man that killed his mother and father and then threw himself on the mercy of the court as an orphan.

Jim Beers

27 March 2017

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

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

Jim Beers is available to speak or for consulting.

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

 

 

Hatred Toward Man and The Perverted Obsession With Animals

Maybe there’s too many people in the world. I have always been told that if you have too much of something, you become programmed not to place as high a value on it. Could be. Maybe it’s just anger. Most people get angry when they have been taken advantage of, used, abused and put away wet, until the next time your tax dollars are needed. Or, it could be that this country, the U.S. of A., that is the people who live here, are a reflection of the leadership in Washington, or the lack thereof. Washington is corrupt, full of hate, perversion, masters of deception and liars. And we wonder why the people are following suit.

I’ve spent a great deal of my life being in some kind of leadership role. I was captain of the football and ski teams in High School, coached several sports at different age levels and owned and operated my own businesses with employees to direct and take care of. I learned a long time ago that when you have others under you, that look to you for guidance, those people become a reflection of their leadership. In short, if you look to man for the answers, instead of the our Creator, the best you can ever do is to be like man.

Whatever the reasons, it is obvious that what is being lost in this country, is the value of the life of a man or a woman. All the reasons I’ve given above are only symptoms of the real problem. The real problem is that there is no focus on God. Where there is no leadership the people will perish. Where there is wrong leadership, the people will blindly follow. Where the moral fiber of a society has deteriorated to a point where it has lost a respect and value for God’s creation of man, often placing more value on other creations without even a recognition of the Creator, more than likely something will happen beyond our means to change that.

I saw and read things today that set me to thinking. They also disturbed me to see it. But more importantly very few others can see or recognize what’s really happening. What they see is but a programmed response, usually in the form of some kind of binary thought process of Right and Left, republican or democrat, liberal and conservative – a false paradigm of destruction.

I was watching Fox and Whiners this morning as the fake media controlled puppets spouted off about issues. A particular issue was about the supposed rape of a 14-year-old girl in a Maryland school, by two illegal immigrants, ages of 18 and 17. I have to be honest that when I watch any “news” I pay little attention to the “message” that is trying to be delivered to and by the automatons and focus on finding bits of truths, which is the only way of figuring out what’s really going on.

Before me flashed an interview of a woman. It matters not who she is or represents. It’s about what she said. I can only paraphrase because I can’t find the interview, but I’m quite accurate in telling of her comments. Without making comment on the 14-year-old rape victim, her focus was not really on the two alleged rapists either, but on the issue of immigration. She said that it didn’t matter that the two rapists were illegal immigrants. That had nothing to do with the act. She pointed out that there are bad people everywhere and this was but another example of the display of bad people’s behavior.

It was clear to me that her objective was to allow anyone to enter this country regardless of their criminal background, and that the raping of one 14-year-old girl was just a part of going about her business for her personal ideology. One has to wonder if she would feel the same if she or her daughter were raped by illegal immigrants.

On a completely different subject matter, but with the same focus, I read an editorial in a Wisconsin online newspaper from a person who was trying to protect wolves. As a bit of background, Wisconsin and other Great Lakes area states, have been trying to battle the Courts to remove gray wolves from the Endangered Species Act protection in order that the state can have more direct control of management of the animal. As the Courts have had the upper hand in wolf matters for over 2 decades, the people have had to resort to getting Congress to pass legislation that, not only removes the Federal protections, but prohibits any challenges in court to the legislative rules.

The editorial writer said that the majority of all wolves were good wolves and the few bad ones, are bad because man caused them to be bad. The writer directly addressed attacks on people by wolves and bears, essentially saying that the loss of the life of a man or his property was just something that we were going to have to put up with because it was unethical to kill animals.

What’s missing from both stories is the lack of any compassion for man. What have we become? The great American Society has become one of hate and anger directed at anyone with a different political perspective. We talk of actual killing another because they are different. Think about that. It is the nature of man to have independent thoughts. Who am I to sit in judgement of one’s thoughts? What we think are independent thoughts are nothing more than the reverberations of the automatic echo chambers of hate. It’s not pretty.

People say we are a Godly nation. We may be a gODLY nation but we are certainly not a nation whose focus is on God (Yehwah) our Creator, the only and Almighty God of the Universe. Americans, and especially the leaders of this country are lying fakes who verbalize their relationship with God while stabbing their fellow man in the back for personal gain and achievement.

This nation is in trouble. The world is in trouble. It appears that the deeper in it we get, the more the people have been programmed to turn to man for the answers. I have to tell you, man does not have any answers.

BUT DON’T GO LOOK!

D.C. Court of Appeals Overturns Wyoming Wolf Protection Ruling

On March 3, 2017, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, overturned a previous ruling that had placed wolves in Wyoming back under protection of the Endangered Species Act. Gray wolves in Wyoming are now under the management of the State and the 2012 Wolf Management Plan has been reinstated. Below is a copy of the Court of Appeals ruling:

Appeals Court on Wyoming Wolves 2017

Himalayan Wolf Attack of a Twelve-Year-Old Case at High Altitude

Abstract:

Introduction: Animal attack is a major public health problem worldwide with mortality reported to the centre for disease control and prevention. In the United States, a person is more likely to be killed by an animal than from lightning strike. Wolves are apex predators and have attacked humans since antiquity. Wolf attacks remain a reality in the US, Canada, Russia, and India, despite advances in security and surveillance technologies.

Case Presentation: A 12-year-old male sustained multiple lacerations on his face and hands leading to extensive bleeding after a predatory wolf attack at high altitude. Tachycardia with feeble pulse, tachypnea, and mild hypothermia were present. The child was managed through resuscitation, rewarming, tetanus, rabies, and antimicrobial prophylaxis, and transferred to tertiary care. Wounds were not sutured.

Conclusions: Wolf-human interactions require diligent efforts for threat assessment, mitigation measures, and community responses under one health approach. Communities in close proximity of wolf populations need to be supported with real time wildlife surveillance and containment systems.

Keywords: Wolf Attack; High Altitude; Canis Lupus Chanco; Hypothermia; One Health; Anti-Rabies Prophylaxis; Wildlife Ethology<<<Read More>>>

DC Court Rules in Favor of Wyoming Wolf Delisting

Press Release from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation:

MISSOULA, Mont.—The Washington DC Court of Appeals issued a ruling in favor of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), State of Wyoming, Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and others regarding the delisting of wolves from the Endangered Species List in Wyoming. This case, originally filed in November of 2012, involved a challenge to the FWS delisting of wolves in Wyoming.

“It’s great news. It’s especially great news for the state of Wyoming,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. “States should have the ability to manage all wildlife within their borders. This is a great day for the fundamental issue of state-based management of wildlife.”

The plaintiffs challenged the FWS determination that wolves are no longer endangered in Wyoming based on three main arguments: insufficient genetic connectivity, wolves have not inhabited a significant portion of their former range, and Wyoming’s wolf management plan was not a sufficient “regulatory mechanism” to protect wolves. In District Court, the judge determined that there was sufficient genetic connectivity, that the FWS correctly interpreted “significant portion of range” but that Wyoming’s management plan was not a “regulatory mechanism” and so the rule was vacated, putting wolves back on the Endangered Species List.

The DC Circuit Court of Appeals decision affirmed the District Court on the issues of genetic connectivity and range, and reversed the District Court on the issue of Wyoming’s management plan. The Appeals Court ruled the FWS reasonably determined that Wyoming’s management plan, in conjunction with statutes and regulations, is sufficient to maintain the minimum number of wolves within the state. This effectively means that the Circuit Court of Appeals found that the FWS determination was lawful, and Wyoming wolves should be delisted.

Did Man Extirpate the Caribou from Maine?

I was reading Part II of V. Paul Reynolds’ report about “Wildlife Restoration Projects.” He wrote mostly about Maine’s two attempts to restore caribou to northern Maine and seemed to suggest that with years of gained knowledge, perhaps it was time to try again. I’m not so sure about that, but…..

I did want to add to something that he wrote about the extirpation of caribou in Maine when he wrote: “Historical documents indicate that Maine’s last remaining caribou were killed off by market hunters who sold them to big city restaurants.” I won’t deny that market hunters made serious dents in deer, moose and caribou herds in their day. However, there are other historical documents that equally indicate the vanishing act of caribou and wolves cannot all be blamed on unregulated hunting.

A few years ago I did an extensive research piece on wolves in Maine from the 1600s until the time they were essentially declared missing in action. Readers should understand that this work was nearly 100% taken from the book, “Early Maine Wildlife: Historical accounts of Canada Lynx, Moose, Mountain Lion, White-Tailed Deer, Wolverine, Wolves, and Woodland Caribou, 1603-1930 – by William B. Krohn and Christopher L. Hoving – The University of Maine Press, Orono, Maine 2010.

It seemed that around the mid-1800s there existed, even then, disagreements as to whether deer, moose and caribou “disappeared” due to wolves or hunters. One writer made the claim, “Curiously enough there are old settlers in Maine who retain the theory that wolves follow deer. They claim that there were no deer at the time of the wolves – ‘the wolves killed them all off’ – but that since the extermination of the wolves the deer have gone on increasing.”

A hunter and trapper, in the book described as experienced, claimed: “In 1853 wolves were very plenty, and for the next five years were not scarce, plenty could be found within sixteen miles of Bangor in 1857 and 1858. They seemed to leave quite suddenly, the last I know of positively being taken was killed by Frank Fairbanks in 1860 in Munsengun. I know the wolves were not exterminated, as from the time they were quite plenty till the time they disappeared, very few skins were brought in. They left of their own accord, just as the caribou left us.”

Those that have some knowledge of the habits and behavior of wolves, understand that many things influence their behavior. For example, at times wolves can eat up all their prey. If this happens, the wolf moves on and the possibility exists that if the prey doesn’t return, neither will the wolf. If there exists alternative prey, i.e. there is more than one prey species to feed wolves, the large predator canine may never leave an area. It would probably require quite a number of wolves in Maine to seriously reduce or extirpate moose, deer and caribou.

In the quote above, we read of the first indication that wolves were not “exterminated” and simply up and left “just as the caribou left us.” This should be important information to consider.

According to evidence found in the book of reference, wolves were mostly gone from the state by the mid-1800s. From around 1860 into the early 1900s, there were very few, to almost zero, recorded wolf kills – the last official wolf kill took place in Andover, Maine in 1920.

One account in the Maine Sportsman, in 1900, of the absence of wolves, claims that, “During the whole winter we saw no deer and but few moose, the entire absence of deer being due to the wolves with which the woods were overrun. Caribou we saw everywhere and I plainly remember that one day, coming out upon them trailing along in single file was a herd of 17 caribou.”

It would seem this would indicate that with reports of wolves being missing from Maine by the mid-1800s, that in 1900, some 40 or 50 years later, there were still quite a few caribou, or at least more of them seen than deer or moose. One must honestly consider that if caribou “recovered” after a presumed disappearance of wolves, in 40 or 50 years, wouldn’t the deer and moose have recovered? Because there are so many influencing factors in wildlife management, that question cannot be simply answered. Other accounts from this book also indicate that after what appeared to be the absence of wolves, deer, moose and caribou made recoveries.

We also know that in the late 1800s Maine began it’s work to regulate the hunting and fishing activities throughout the state, with regulations well in force by the early 1900s.

Examination of the information provided in this book help to support the historic behavior of wolves, i.e. that once they had reduced the numbers of the prey to a certain level, the wolves took off for better hunting grounds. However, this event appears to have occurred nearly 50 years before the caribou disappeared.

It cannot be argued that many factors contributed to the disappearance of the caribou in Maine. That disappearance cannot and should not be completely attributed to hunting. We know that after the wolves mostly disappeared from Maine, the deer, moose and caribou recovered. If in 1900 loggers were reporting seeing “herds of 17 caribou” it was not market hunters and uncontrolled hunting that killed them after that.

If Maine was ever going to seriously consider a third try at caribou restoration, many, many factors must be considered other than introducing more of them this time. Perhaps the habitat of northern Maine simply cannot support caribou any longer. If caribou, in the very early 1900s, one day just walked out of the state – some believe they moved into New Brunswick and never returned – there had to be reasons. Do we know what those reasons were? Are we interested in finding out? Perhaps knowing what took place in the early 1900s would answer a lot of questions as to whether another attempt at caribou restoration would work.

Some things to consider: