September 28, 2023

Do As I Say And Not As I Do

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The hypocrisy continues in Wyoming. Officials there continue the practice of supplemental feeding of wild elk while at the same time the government bans ranchers from raising elk on farms saying it is unnatural to pen up elk and it causes disease and threatens the wild elk. Give me a break!

According to this morning’s Casper Star-Tribune, a new study shows, once again, that the rate of brucellosis rose considerably in areas where there were feedlots.

A new report shows the level of brucellosis exposure in Buffalo Valley elk has jumped during a period when emergency feeding of the animals has taken place.

The new report examining abortion and birth rates in the brucellosis-endemic area of Wyoming said seroprevalence rates jumped significantly for elk in the Buffalo Valley. Seroprevalence shows an animal has been exposed to the brucellosis bacteria but does not necessarily have the disease, which can cause ungulates to abort.

Officials are saying that the supplemental feeding in Buffalo Valley was a temporary thing and won’t happen again, well, unless of course the elk begin starving to death. But what about other places like Jackson Hole? Are officials going to keep feeding the elk there?

There are two things wrong here. The first is that if the carrying capacity of the land is such that it can’t support the number of elk in existence then numbers should be reduced. Hunting proves to be the most humane way of dealing with it. Other methods are to transfer elk to other parts of the state or other states in need of elk.

The second is the double standard the state exemplifies by “farming” elk to maintain artificially high numbers. It is my understanding this is done for three reasons – to keep the animal rights groups happy, to keep the tourists happy and to keep the hunters happy. Where’s the science?

Wyoming and Montana banned elk farming because they considered the practice a threat to the future of the wild elk in their states. If this is true, then why is the state practicing farming themselves. Authorities say that elk farming runs the risk of the spread of disease, brucellosis and chronic wasting disease are the two major ones. Time and time again, studies show that when elk are fed at feedlots, the risk of spreading the disease increases significantly. This is the same reason elk farming was banned.

So why does Wyoming keep feeding its elk and prohibiting individuals to farm elk? One can only conclude that it must be the government wanting a monopoly on the elk business while at the same time the money is too good coming from the tourists who want to view wild elk and hunters willing to pay to hunt the animals. Certainly science plays no role at all in this equation.

I hunt. I promote hunting and I think that the future of hunting depends on good sound wildlife management that does not rely on artificial means to sustain it. This is nothing more than put and take hunting. It’s time for Wyoming to practice what it preaches and finds better ways of managing its elk herds.

*Previous Posts*

Wyoming “Brucellosis-Free”
Rex Rammell Arrested, Again….Cow Elk Tests Positive For Red Deer Genes
Fanning The Flames
Idaho’s Escaped Elk Test Negative – Elk Ranchers Face Banning Advocates
Idaho Governor Calls Off Elk Depredation Hunt…..Sort Of
In Response To Malnourished Elk
Rex Rammell’s Letter To The Editor
Has Government Gone Too Far? More Escaped Elk Shot
What Do Malnurished Elk Look Like?
Idaho Elk Breeders Association Opens New Website
Bull Elk Shot Inside Rex Rammell’s Ranch
Wyoming Governor Asks Idaho Governor To Ban Game Farms
Escaped Idaho Elk Shot In Wyoming
Rex Rammell Arrested
Governor Jim Risch Defends His Decision To Shoot Escaped Elk
Idaho Gubernatorial Candidates Have A Say About Elk Farming
Rammell For Governor, Ranch Sold, Elk Still Being Hunted
Wyoming Governor Freudenthal Says Interior Department Not Doing Enough About Escaped Elk
Idaho’s Escaped Elk Now Getting National Attention
Idaho Elk Farmer Says All His Elk Accounted For
Idaho Governor Expands Hunt For Escaped Elk
More Elk Killed In Idaho – Some By Hunters
Idaho Elk Farmer Plans To Sue The State
Scientists Will Test Killed Idaho Elk For Disease And Genetic Make-up
A Helicopter, A Plane And 25 Agents Can’t Find 160 Domestic Elk
Escaped Idaho Elk Being Slaughtered. Wyoming Ordered To Kill Elk Also
Domestic Elk Crash The Gate – Escape!

Tom Remington