A Plan For Reintroducing Megafauna To North America

It may be possible to restore extinct megafauna like giant horses, North American cheetah, cave bears, etc. by means of genetic engineering.

Just this weekend at a meeting I wondered if it were possible to restore the orginal cattle (today’s cow is a completely human-derived animal).

I’m not endorsing this, but it ought to provoke discussion.

Article in Science Daily.

October 3. More on this at Carnivore Conservation. “What is wrong with USA? Not enough giant cheetahs!”

Too much of a good thing?

This is a National Parks Conservation Association story about the overabundance of elk in Rocky Mountain National Park.

This is hardly a brand new revelation. However, the story is well written.

Read article.

Land use initiative pushed by New York developer threaten the landscape of the West and taxpayer’s pocket book

Idaho and a number of other states, including California and Washington are beset by a “property rightts” ballot initiative. Many stories have reported that the signature gathering was larged funded by New York developer Howard Rich. The initiative would basically outlaw zoning and other land use laws, and punch a huge hole in the budgets of the states if they try to regulate the uses of land.

It would never pass except that it is tied to a popular section, which is already law in Idaho. It has a Trojan Horse buried at the end. “‘They bait you with eminent domain, but you end up voting to destroy all land-use regulation,’ said Elaine Clegg, a nonpartisan member of the city council in Boise, Idaho.”

In a number of states the initiative has been kicked off the ballot because the signatures were gathered by paid signature gatherers (that’s legal) but the initiative was misrepresented and voters often tricked into signing it and other ballot intiatives. I know in Idaho it was even circulated at Earth Day celebrations, where people were told it was a land protection measure.

The way it is worded, I think it may pass. Few folks know that the eminent domain problem created by the Kelo case was taken care of.

Here is a story in the Washington Post. “Court Ruling Fuels Dispute in West Over Eminent Domain. Initiatives Challenge Land-Use Regulations.”

Here in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, “$2.3 million pours into I-933. Two rival coalitions try to sway voters on land-use initiative.”

Now that the battle is on, in most of the states many are giving money to support it or fight it. The Farm Bureau seems to be a leading sponsor of the initiative of the Washington State I-933 initative (figures taken from the news story above), but as a comment below indicates this does not seem to be the case in Idaho.

Lolo National Forest in Montana expands by 4000 acres due to TNC purchase

A criticial wildlife area has been protected from subdivision by the  Nature Conservancy. The land has now been  purchased by the government and added to the Lolo National Forest.
AP story.

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Mary Bomar confirmed as the new director of the National Park Service

Bomar replaces Fran Mainella, who stepped down this summer.

She is apparently highly regarded despite being a Bush Administration nomination.

Story in the Jackson Hole Daily.

Posted in politics, public lands. Comments Off on Mary Bomar confirmed as the new director of the National Park Service