136 wolves at year’s end in Yellowstone Park.

Wolf population figures are in for 2006 for Yellowstone Park. Ten breeding pairs, 136 wolves, and 13 packs were identified after intensive observations.

It is fascinating to compare this year’s figures with the past.

The wolf population in the Park peaked in 2003 with 174 wolves. At the end of 2004 the population was essentially the same, 171 wolves, but after very high wolf pup mortality in 2005, the Park wolf population dropped 30% to 118 wolves, the first real decrease in the history of the wolf recovery program in the Park.

In 2006, there was excellent pup survival. Seven-five pups were born and 60 survived until Jan. 1, 2007. The total wolf population grew by just 18 wolves to 136. About 45% of the Park’s wolf population is pups!

The reason for the slow regrowth of the wolf population is mostly out-migration.

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Public meeting set on issuing Idaho wolf hunt tags set Jan. 25 in Boise

This was announced today.

PUBLIC MEETING NOTICE

Pursuant to Idaho Code Section 67-2343, notice is hereby given of an open public meeting of the Idaho Fish and Game Commission.

DATE OF NOTICE:    January 23, 2007
DATE OF MEETING:    January 25, 2007 at 1:30 p.m.
PLACE OF MEETING:    Idaho Department of Fish and Game
600 S. Walnut
Boise, Idaho 83707

PERSONS ATTENDING:
Commissioners
Director
Staff

PURPOSE OF MEETING/AGENDA:    Executive Session: Idaho Code 67-2345 (1) (b) Personnel.
Open Meeting: discussion on proposed tag fee structure related to hunting wolves.

Individuals with disabilities may request meeting accommodations by contacting the Director’s office at the Idaho Department of Fish and Game directly at 208-334-5159 or through the Idaho Relay Service at 1-800-377-2529 (TDD).

Gore Sells Out Idaho’s 10,000 Seat Taco Bell Arena “Faster Than Elton John”…

This is from the Huffington Post on Al Gore’s talk in Boise.

This is perhaps a bit more balanced than the Idaho Statesman? Anyway that’s why blogs have grown. People want more news and all sides of the news. We were not getting it from the corporate media.

. . . and here is more Gore chants, Craig Rants. Boise Weekly.

Wyoming predicts the end of the world if East Entrance road not kept open during the winter.

Wyoming group argues to keep Sylvan Pass open. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette.

Once you get east of Jackson, Wyoming, they don’t just disagree with policies, they compete in hyperbole to describe how much they disagree.

“Closing Sylvan Pass in the winter, they said, would be a devastating blow and one they vowed to fight. It’s just one step closer to the cliff for us,” said state Rep. Colin Simpson of Cody.

In fact Cody is growing very rapidly, and it is a long way from the East Entrance, which only 13 people used last winter. Because avalanche control costs $200,000 a year and grooming the road adds thousands more, divide 13 into let’s say $250,000 to see how much each snowmobile over the Pass costs the National Park Service to which you pay larger and larger entrance fees every year.

Wyoming representatives said 3500 used the pass each winter 1990s. That is still over $70 per snowmobile. Yellowstone’s winter plan holds numbers far below that. That number will never be attained again under any conditions that are under contemplation.

These businesspeople seem completely unconcerned about the danger to people who keep the road open, groom the trails, ride the snowmobiles, or pay the bills. The common word for that is “greed.” A notice that is a common theme in movies, e.g., Jaws, Volcano. Businesses tell everyone there is no danger, but then . . . .

The local political rhetoric is similar for the wolf. The wolves are not just a problem for a few ranchers, but a menace that is laying waste to Agriculture in the area. Big game herds are being totally wiped out (except for the number that shows elk number are not down).

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