Story on Boise TV of massive sheep losses to wolves near Council, Idaho not sustained by facts

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“Wolves killing sheep, cattle by the dozens near Council”

That was the story blared on KTVB television in Boise. Here is that story.

However, there have been NO new depredations in the Blue Bunch pack area since July and then it was only a few sheep kills, not a mass slaughter.

Suzanne Stone of Defenders of Wildlife checked the story with Wildlife Services, an agency always ready to go after wolves.

Stone said Mr. Yantis apparently didn’t contact WS about his supposed losses. Todd Grimm, State Deputy Director of Wildlife Services told Stone he had never heard of Yantis, and had not investigated any depredations on his place.

Because the telephone numbers telling where to report losses are plastered all over the Internet and elsewhere, it seems unusual that such a large loss would not be reported to authorities.

Curt Mack of the Nez Perce Tribal wolf team told Stone that 43 sheep were confirmed killed this season by the Lick Creek Pack, which was then “controlled.” Some, or all of these belonged to Ron Shurtz, mentioned in the TV story.

The dead cattle mentioned were so far gone “melted down” that there was no way to tell how they died.

No problems found in tests of Rammell’s elk so far

So far the elk tested from Rex Rammell’s elk shooting farm have tested negative for diseases or the genes of red deer (European elk). Not all have been tested.

The escape of his domestic elk was a big controversy a month ago and was covered heavily on this blog and in the main stream media. I won’t recapitulate.

Read the story in the Idaho Falls Post Register.

Burbot (ling) spread rapidly in the Green River Basin

Just another piece of bad news from that part of Wyoming that is getting totally screwed up.

From the Billings Gazette. AP story. 

Posted in Fish. Comments Off on Burbot (ling) spread rapidly in the Green River Basin

NE Montana mystery canid finally killed after a year

Some folks thought it was a wolf hybrid, some thought a wolf. It has been preying on sheep in NE Montana for over a year. It turned out to be a wolf, way out on the Montana plains.

There is no evidence that other wolves are in the area. The wolf was a bit more reddish than most and had no radio collar or tags. It could have been a disperser from the Greater Yellowstone or somewhere else in Montana.

Not all Montana wolves by any means are derived from the Yellowstone Park reintroduction. The Montana wolf recovery began with the migration of wolves down the spine of the Rockies from Alberta and British Columbia in the 1980s. Later their numbers were augmented by dispersal of reintroduced wolves from Idaho and Greater Yellowstone.

There is an outside chance it was an illegally released wolf or even a disperser from Minnesota.

Story in the Billings Gazette. By Mike Stark.

Posted in Montana wolves, Wolf dispersal, Wolves, Wolves and Livestock. Comments Off on NE Montana mystery canid finally killed after a year