Although wolves kill hound, changes by cougar hunters show they’re learning

On Dec. 31, a cougar’s houndsman’s dogs ran into a wolf pack and one ended up dead and one injured, but that is not the end of what has been a fairly common story.

The article describes how those who run hounds in extreme NW Montana have changed their tactics and communicate with each other if they see wolf sign in an area. These wolf/hound incidents are on the decline . . . hunters adapting — the way things should be.

Story in the Daily InterLake. Wolves kill hound on a hunt near Kalispell. By Jim Mann.

Posted in wildcats, Wolves. Tags: . Comments Off on Although wolves kill hound, changes by cougar hunters show they’re learning

Wolves need to gorge, even in captivity

You don’t feed wolves like you do dogs even if the wolves don’t have to hunt.

Story about the wolves at the International Wolf Center at Ely, Minnesota. By Scott Stowell

Rare lynx photographed in Yellowstone

Rare lynx photographed in Yellowstone. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette.

Editorial: Weigh all costs of energy from oil shale, tar sands. Cost of oil shale is too high

People are beginning to realize that the cost of burning their food (corn) to fuel their automobiles is pretty high. Now that the Iowa caucus is over, perhaps some rationality will filter down to the politicians on this issue.

A much worse energy tradeoff, however, is oil shale. There are huge deposits of it in Utah and Colorado, but the costs of extracting it are enormous. It’s a bad net energy tradeoff because it doesn’t really contain oil, but rather a precursor to it, and not even in a very high concentration. Oil shale will be tremendously destructive to the environment too.

With all these things against it, naturally the Bush Administration thinks it’s a great thing. The Salt Lake Tribune does some reality-based analysis. Price too high. Editorial. Salt Lake Tribune.

Conservationists Request Investigations of Reported Mexican Wolf Baiting

Conservation groups have taken action after the story about ranch hands luring wolves in so they will kill calves, so the wolves will then killed by the government “to protect the livestock.”


For Immediate Release, January 3, 2008

Contact: Michael Robinson, (575) 534-0360

Conservationists Request Investigations of Reported Wolf Baiting

SILVER CITY, N.M.— Fifteen conservation groups wrote Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne today requesting an independent inspector general investigation into a reported baiting of endangered Mexican gray wolves. The baiting scheme, in which vulnerable cattle were allegedly left near a wolf den, resulted in a rare wolf being shot by the federal government.

The letter to Kempthorne states in part: “The possibility that illegal take was perpetrated through abuse of government-provided telemetry radio receivers and through taking advantage of SOP 13, the rigid predator-control protocol applied to Mexican wolves, merits thorough investigation.”

Conservationists are also requesting a law enforcement investigation, retrieval of radio telemetry receivers that may be used to facilitate illegal baiting, and release back into the wild of trapped wolves that may also have been baited on the same ranch. In addition, in separate letters to the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management, the concerned groups request the cancelation of grazing permits.

According to the December 24, 2007 High Country News article that broke the wolf-baiting story, ranch employee Mike Miller “branded cattle less than a half-mile from the wolves’ den, the enticing aroma of seared flesh surely reaching the pack’s super-sensitive nostrils. Miller was, in essence, offering up a cow as a sacrifice.” In fact, the article quotes Miller as saying: “We would sacrifice a calf to get a third strike” — referring to depredations in the so-called “three-strikes-and-you’re-out” rule governing the Mexican wolves, formally known as SOP 13. Miller is quoted in a subsequent Albuquerque Journal article as denying that he made such an admission.

The conservationists’ letters specifically seek the following actions:

  • A law enforcement investigation of the incident described in the magazine High Country News, along with prosecution if merited.
  • An independent inspector general investigation of whether wolves were removed from the same ranch subsequent to the Fish and Wildlife Service learning about the alleged baiting, the granting of government telemetry receivers to the livestock industry and/or rogue county governments, and related questions.
  • Cancellation of grazing and outfitting permits held by any person found to have baited wolves. (The foreign-owned ranch where the incident is alleged to have taken place holds multiple Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, and state grazing permits.)

Michael J. Robinson
Center for Biological Diversity

P.O. Box 53166
Pinos Altos, NM 88053
(575) 534-0360

Here is the letter to the Secretary of Interior (Dirk Kempthorne)

kempthorne-wolfbaiting-20081.pdf

– – – – –

Update: Story in the ABQ Journal-News. Conservationists Want Probe Into Reports of Wolf Baiting