Here is the latest alert/update from the Buffalo Field Campaign. I usually post them to help this hard working and group of brave volunteers. In the winter they have to confront daily the brutal Montana Department of Livestock, but in recent years also the Bushified Forest Service, and the Gallatin County Sheriff’s Department. Sometimes they get beaten or arrested for non-violent observation, video, and documentation of the harassment and pointless slaughter of Yellowstone’s bison which are confined to Yellowstone Park’s artificial boundary under the myth that they are a brucellosis disease threat to cattle which are now almost non-existent in the areas the bison try to leave the Park to roam. Ralph Maughan
First here is a story from New West on Park bison this winter. State and Federal Agencies Predict Busy Winter for Bison Management. By David Nolt.
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Buffalo Field Campaign
Update from the Field
December 6, 2007
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Why are they killing the last wild buffalo?
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NUMBER OF AMERICAN BISON ELIMINATED from the last wild population in the U.S.
Total Since 2000: 2,028
*includes lethal government action, quarantine, state and treaty hunts
In this issue:
- Update from the Field
- Lots of BuffaLove and Praises
- BFC Newsletters and Notecards Available Soon!
- Ski, Shop, and Surf to Save the Buffalo and Support BFC
- Last Words
* Update from the Field
Dear Buffalo Friends,
We are very happy to report that no wild buffalo have been harassed or killed since we wrote to you last week.
Last Friday BFC met with Yellowstone National Park administrators and on Tuesday we attended the Interagency Bison Management Plan open house. At both meetings the news from the agencies wasn’t good. They told us that it will likely be a very bad winter for our friends the buffalo.
One of the reasons given by the government agencies is the increased paranoia instilled in Montana’s cattle producers since brucellosis was detected in a Montana cattle herd last spring. While it is widely known that wild buffalo were not responsible for this transmission, and while there is no substantial evidence that the source wasn’t domestic cattle, the cattle industry is looking to blame Yellowstone wildlife, in particular the elk and buffalo. The industry fails to take responsibility for bringing brucellosis to this continent and infecting native wildlife.
The agencies are also prepared to heavily haze, capture and slaughter buffalo this year based on Yellowstone’s estimate of 4,700 individuals. Though Yellowstone biologists have stated time and again that the Park could sustain well over 5,000 buffalo, the Interagency Bison misManagement Plan’s politically derived population cap for wild buffalo living in Yellowstone is 3,000. Based on this, the agencies could capture and kill upwards of 1,700 buffalo. It is a sad day when a sacred keystone species that once numbered in the tens of millions and has been reduced to an island population of fewer than 5,000 is deemed “overpopulated.” It is an even sadder day when the agencies who are responsible for conserving and protecting wildlife cow-tow to the economic interests of the cattle industry and sacrifice native wildlife in the process.
Yellowstone National Park, the Montana Department of Livestock and Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks have all made it perfectly clear that once the buffalo hunt is over on February 15, hazing, capture and slaughter will begin in earnest. It is very difficult to have such a warning of impending doom.
We have an opportunity to help stop the harassment and slaughter before it begins. Please visit the BFC web site to contact the decision-makers and strongly urge them to rethink their nefarious plans http://www.buffalofieldcampaign.org/actnow/politicians.html. Please spread the word to save the herd! One positive thing these agencies could do, at least on the western boundary of Yellowstone, is to let the wild buffalo have the Horse Butte Peninsula. Horse Butte is now completely cattle-free, and there is absolutely no excuse for the agencies to insist on capturing and killing wild buffalo for accessing this land. These agencies base decisions on the assumption that cattle-based economics outweigh the interests and integrity of wildlife and wild places. We must raise our voices and let them know they are wrong!
* Lots of BuffaLove and Thanks
Thanks are due to many many people who responded to my asking for donations in memory of my companion Phil Morton whose birthday falls on Earth Day. In the April 19, 2007 issue of the update I asked specifically for donation to enable the campaign to buy new radios. This week, from the monies raised, we were able to purchase three new radios which will help us to stay in better communication with volunteers and staff out in the field. Also, many thanks to those of you who have been gathering ESA petition signatures and sending them to us. You can download the petition here: http://www.buffalofieldcampaign.org/science/buffaloesapetition.pdf
When gathering petitions, please make sure that signers put in an address and zip+4. Any signatures without an address are considered invalid. Also, if you receive BFC’s annual newsletter, please let us know if you have had a change of address. The newsletter is set to mail very soon and we want to make sure it reaches you! If you would like to be added to our snail mail list, please send your mailing address to firstname.lastname@example.org. See be And finally, thanks for the iBook and eMac donations. Our lives got a lot easier and our productivity went up with these computers.
Standing with and for the buffalo until they are WILD & FREE again, sending you all lots of BUFFA-LOVE!
* BFC Newsletters and Notecards Available Soon!
BFC’s 2007-2008 newsletter is hot off the press and will be mailed to our supporters starting next week. Please let us know if you have had a change of address, if you are not on our mailing list and would like to receive a newsletter, or if you want to help spread the word and save the buffalo herd by placing newsletters around your community. Write to Dan at email@example.com.
Buffalo Field Campaign is proud to offer these new and beautiful notecards featuring the original “Tatanka 2” design by Marian Osher. Notecards cost $15 for a pack of ten and can be purchased online or through the mail. These cards are being printed now and should be available next week. Click the link to view the sharp new design and to pre-order:
* Ski, Shop, and Surf to Save the Buffalo and Support BFC
February Colorado Ski Vacation
Bidding on BFC’s second annual Crested Butte Ski Vacation Fundraiser will begin next week. This year’s package will include a week’s lodging in a five star condominium at the base of the resort, lift tickets, meals at Crested Butte restaurants, and groceries. 100% of the proceeds from the auction will go directly to Buffalo Field Campaign. The Ebay Auction will take place between now and Christmas. Check the BFC web site next week for more information or email firstname.lastname@example.org. A big thanks to long-time BFC supporter Deanna W. for making this fundraiser possible with the donation of her condominium.
Support BFC With Online Purchases
If you could give Buffalo Field Campaign up to 26% of the money you spend every time you shop, at no extra cost to you, would you do it? Well that’s exactly what happens when you make purchases through iGive.com. Shop online at one of over 680 retailers such as Patagonia, Land’s End, Apple, iTunes, Sharper Image, and Ebay and support Buffalo Field Campaign in the process! It doesn’t cost anything to join and once you’re a member, every time you shop through iGive.com, Buffalo Field Campaign receives a percentage of each purchase.
Click on http://www.iGive.com/BFC for a new and easy way to help raise money for BFC.
Surf the Web and Save the Buffalo
Use GoodSearch and generate contributions to BFC. Visit http://www.goodsearch.com/ and start today.
* Last Words
“I’m a buffalo. I do what I want.“
Media & Outreach
Buffalo Field Campaign
P.O. Box 957
West Yellowstone, MT 59758
BFC is the only group working in the field every day in defense of the last wild buffalo in the U.S.
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