Page for discussing Wildlife Watchers

There needs to be a special page of this important topic.

Go to it.

Record number of elk in Montana, but poor elk hunting season due to warm weather

Story in the Missoulian. The gang’s all there: Elk season progressing slowly, but warm weather is main culprit. By Perry Backus of the Missoulian.

Latest issue of the newsletter of the Western Watersheds Project

It’s called the “Watersheds Messenger.” I think most people will find it an interesting and valuable read.

Nov. 2007 issue.

Posted in Elk, Grazing and livestock. Tags: . Comments Off on Latest issue of the newsletter of the Western Watersheds Project

Entire wolf pack of rare Mexican Wolves Missing in Gila National Forest

Wolves Missing In Gila Forest. By Rene Romo. Copyright © 2007 Albuquerque Journal; Journal Southern Bureau

Update: Governor Richardson: Disappearance of wolf pack is ‘disturbing.’ As we know, Governor Richardson is running for President. One way to show leadership in the area domestic terrorism would be to clean up the long-term trouble-makers in the area. The Catron County area has been dangerous for a long time, which threats and assaults on federal land management officers, local conservationists, violation of grazing, ESA and other public land laws.

Sylvan Pass will stay open

The final decision for winter use for Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks has been signed. Sylvan Pass will remain open this winter with the use of howitzers and helicopters for avalanche control despite the huge cost of doing so for a trickle of snowmobilers.

The Park Service, however, will not send personnel up to shoot shells into the snow if they deem it too dangerous, as has been the case in the past. So at least Park employees will not be expected to sacrifice their lives for the perceived benefit of a few Cody, Wyoming businesses.

Once again, I think this illustrates what I said about Cody, Wyoming as Wyoming town most negative to wildlife and sound management of Yellowstone Park in the public rather than a parochial interest.

Story in the Casper Star Tribune. Sylvan Pass will stay open. By Whitney Royster.

EPA initiates first steps to ban two nasty wildlife poisons

Sodium cyanide and sodium fluoroacetate — Compound 1080 — are both used to kill wild mammals. They frequently kill non-target species and they have been used to illegally kill wolves in Idaho. Both would be excellent weapons for terrorists to use. 1080 causes a painful, awful death. Please help get them banned.

I have a personal reason too. Much of the supply of this stuff for the Western United States is in a building in Pocatello only a mile from my house. It is near the center of the city and close to the Idaho State University campus. . . talk about a proposal that would improve homeland security! There has been a little comment about this in the local newspaper (the Idaho State Journal). In it local employees suggested the supply is not safely secured.

Read the rest of the story, and how to take action at Wild Again.

Update (11-22-2007): Story Casper Star Tribune. EPA looks at poison ban. By Brodie Farquhar.

Regeneration of ungrazed sagebrush steppe

The photo below was taken on Nov. 18 on a hillside that in late August was dusty, brown, apparently dead, but not grazed by cows. It is about a 2 by 3 foot area just below a sagebrush (not shown) in the Bannock Range south of Pocatello.

Where cattle have not destroyed the structure of the soil, cool weather and rain quickly brings an amazing proliferation of moss, lichens, and sprouting plants. Since the 18th there has been the first cold snap, and the area is probably frozen, but it will serve to collect and retain moisture, stop erosion, repel invaders like cheatgrass next spring and summer. No doubt by August 2008 it will again look dusty, brown and dead, perhaps not terribly different from cowed out country.

Similar photos could have been taken under most sagebrush and bitterbrush plants on the hillside.

Photo copyright Ralph Maughan. Nov. 18, 2007.