Idaho State Senate passes the “elk farmers” elk regulation bill

Idaho is going down a different path than Wyoming in terms of harming elk–different, but just a bad (privatization of elk). Elk will be livestock, not wildlife if this trend continues. There is already too much agricultural thinking about wildlife in Idaho, and not enough thinking about wildlife as a good thing, in and of itself.

Once again this is a reason why the politicians yell so much about wolves. It’s a diversion from real wildlife issues in Idaho, just as it is in Wyoming. Idahoans need to take the matter into their own hands like Montanans did, and get an initiative on the ballot. The state legislature will never pass a bill on its own.

“We’ve been waiting for this one – this is the industry bill.” With that, Senator Tim Corder, R-Mountain Home began his successful bid to herd S1074 through the full Senate. And in a prepared statement, Sen. Kate Kelly, D-Boise wrote, “Senate Bill 1074 passed by the Senate today was written by the elk industry for the elk industry. It represents bare standards designed to give only the minimal protection.”

Read the rest in New West. Idaho Senate: License Elk Hunt Operations. By Jill Kuraitis, 2-23-07

It is important to note that the vote was largely on party lines, with Democrats favoring wild elk and Republicans favoring the minimal regulation of elk farmers.

Posted in Elk, politics, privatization. Comments Off on Idaho State Senate passes the “elk farmers” elk regulation bill

Buffalo Field Campaign. Little activity on the bison front

Here is the latest report from the Buffalo Field Campaign. The political idiocy that keeps bison inside the Park is at a background level — that’s my interpretation.

However, here are the details from BFC.

Dear Buffalo Friends,

Things remain quiet here along Yellowstone’s western boundary. Not a single buffalo has stepped foot into Montana in weeks. BFC volunteers are conducting daily recons, monitoring the buffalo’s movements inside the park, but none are to be found outside of Yellowstone’s western boundary, or even close to it. In a selfish way it’s good because there’s no buffalo for the Department of Livestock to bully or kill. And, because of their absence, many survived Montana’s “hunt.” Yet we feel guilty for this strange relief, because we all know that a land without bison is, like an ocean without whales, incomplete. We feel a strong sense of loneliness without our giant shaggy friends around but we are thankful that they are able to live in peace for the time being.

Near Gardiner, Yellowstone’s northern boundary has been less quiet. Along the west side of the Yellowstone River, mixed groups of buffalo are on the move, attempting to migrate in search of critical forage. The National Park Service checks their every move, not allowing them to approach the park boundary, not allowing them to find food, not allowing them to maintain the ecological integrity of the land. On Tuesday, NPS Rangers hazed a mixed group of about 30 buffalo deeper into the Park, and this morning 90 buffalo were pushed off of their chosen ground, forced back to grasslands where they have already fed. None had even left the park boundary. Read the rest of this entry »