US House Natural Resources Committee has hearing on ORV damage on public lands

First, the Las Vegas Review Journal. OHV misuse criticized in U.S. House .Off-road fans, critics face off: Even riders see damages left by few.

House panel told public lands overrun by ORVs. Deseret News (Salt Lake City, UT).

“. . . the 300 arrests and 37 injuries at a gathering of 1,000 ORV users at the Little Sahara Recreation Area in Utah last year to illustrate how bad things are getting.”

Experts: Off-road vehicles threat to public lands. By Noelle Straub. Missoulian D.C. Bureau

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New and related. Colorado wildlife officers can now ticket for illegal riding. Grand Junction Sentinel. This will be a great help to the too thinly spread Forest Service and BLM enforcement officers. 

Cost of controlling Buffalo Ridge Pack revealed

The killing of the Buffalo Ridge Pack in Idaho prompted an inquiry bringing forth some interesting information about the cost of wolf control.

The information is in a letter by Gloria Carlton in the most recent Idaho Mountain Express.

I wonder what the dollar loss of livestock to the rancher (said to be Wayne Baker) was and the cost of measures that would have made the pasture less attractive to wolves?*

I imagine direct expenditures by conservation groups to keep this wolf pack out of trouble plus volunteer time was easily $50,000.  The efforts were mostly in Squaw Creek where the pack denned each year and was quite easy to see in the winter until about the end of May.

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* Note it was never proven the Buffalo Ridge pack killed the several small calves that were confirmed to be killed by wolf. The East Pass Creek pack is in the area and their are other scattered wolves.

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Rocky Barker: Ranchers worry about meat packing consolidation

Ranchers worry about meat packing consolidation. Rocky Barker’s blog, “Letters from the West.” Idaho Statesman
So much of politics is about diverting the attention of those affected by policies onto something not very relevant. The wolf is pointed to in order that hunters won’t see the destruction of habitat by livestock, mining, oil and gas and developers. The efforts by Western Watersheds are pointing to so that livestock producers won’t see the threat of international consolidation of meat packing.

If you turn to other areas of politics, there are thousands of examples.

Posted in cattle. Tags: . 4 Comments »

Diamond G Ranch agrees to end grazing in part of the Dunoir Valley

Ranch agrees to end grazing near Park. Depredations pushed Diamond G to accept deal on federal land. Ranch agrees to end grazing near park. Billings Gazette. By Mike Stark.

This is great news! While it hasn’t been in the news much lately, in the late 1990s and early 2000s, this ranch was a hot spot for complaints about wolves. I had written many times about the wisdom of trying to raise cattle in a drainage full of every large predator in North American save jaguar and polar bear.

The Dunoir isn’t really very close to Yellowstone Park (despite the headline). It is adjacent to the Washakie Wilderness.

Wild Bison: BFC Update from the Field 3/20/08

New West is putting up the BFC’s reports now.

Wild Bison: BFC Update from the Field 3/20/08

In this issue (above)
* Update from the Field
* Unfortunate Opportunity: BFC Sees Inside Bison Trap
* Comment by April 2 on Horse Butte Bison Trap
* Church Universal and Triumphant Land “Deal” Bad Deal for Wild Bison
* Photo of the Week
* Last Word

Posted in Bison, Yellowstone. Comments Off on Wild Bison: BFC Update from the Field 3/20/08

Alaska judge upholds aerial gunning of wolves, but reduces the area substantially

Alaska Judge Upholds Aerial Wolf Killing But Limits Extent. Environment News Service.

The issue may be settled this August by Alaska voters or by Congress with the proposed PAW Act.*

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* “The Protect America’s Wildlife Act, or PAW Act, was introduced by California Congressman George Miller along with Congressman John Dingell of Michigan, the floor manager of the debate on the original Airborne Hunting Act; and Congressman Norm Dicks of Washington state, chair of the Interior Appropriations Subcommittee.

Now before the Committee on Natural Resources, the bill, H.R. 3663, would close a loophole in federal law that Alaska officials have used to permit hunters to shoot wolves from aircraft”

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Related story: Lack of snow hampers Alaska predator control program. They’ve only killed about 1/6 as many wolves as they wanted tol

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