Obama Stuns with Forest Service Nominee

Homer Wilkes, not what conservationists hoped for-

We ran this news earlier, but now David Frey at New West has a comprehensive article on the nomination.

HOMER WHO? Obama Stuns with Forest Service Nominee. “With little forest credentials, is Wilkes the right man to oversee the Forest Service?” By David Frey. New West.

All YNP entrances are now open

All the entrances to Yellowstone Park are now open, and this includes Beartooth Pass. Travelling the Pass at this time of year ought to be an awesome experience assuming you can see over the snowbanks.

Posted in Yellowstone, Yellowstone National Park. Comments Off on All YNP entrances are now open

Pressure from ag interests halts reading of “Omnivoire’s Dilemma” at Washington State University?

Pathbreaking book about agri-business dropped from Freshmen Reading program-

Wazoo (Washington State University in Pullman) has a common reading program every year for freshmen. This is a growing practice at universities, but Michael Pollan’s look at how our food is produced in an unsustainable manner (oil and corn) seems to have been too controversial for the appropriation scrapped university.

I suspect we are going to here less and less social and political analysis from our universities because it offends state legislators and Boards of Reagents who hold the purse strings in a time of economic crisis.

WSU balks at book critical of agribusiness. “Washington State University has decided to halt a common reading program for incoming freshman that would have used a book critical of agribusiness”. By The Associated Press

Three Wolf Moon T-shirt. Get yourself that special gal or guy!

It’s much cheaper and takes less time than learning to play guitar-

From the Washington Post. It’s Made of 100% Cotton; Its Sales Are 99% Ironic. By Mike Musgrove.

It looks like this is going viral.

Look at Amazon.com

Commissioners work with feds to head off grazing lawsuits

Central Idaho threatened/endangered fish habitat is threatened by public land livestock grazing.  Federal managers drag their feet.  WWP threatens to file suit.

Chinook - photo: USFWS

Chinook - photo: USFWS

Many folk don’t realize the impact to native fisheries habitat that livestock grazing can and does have.  The Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management and other land and wildlife management agencies work diligently to avoid acknowledging livestock’s impact to listed fish species such as Bull Trout, Chinook salmon, steelhead, and Sockeye salmon even when their own biologists and other scientists officially describe the deleterious effect.

It’s real – fish depend on stream-side vegetation for shade, filtering sediment, and as habitat for insects that fish eat.  Livestock grazing removes that vegetation and tramples stream-banks polluting spawning gravels and redds (fish nests) with sediment that suffocates fish eggs.  Grazing widens stream-channels increasing water temperature beyond tolerable levels and reduces the number of pool habitat fish need in streams.   A single livestock trampling event can wipe out entire redds (fish nests) killing thousands of protected fish eggs and baby fish.

Fish need water, water use to supply stock tanks on public land and diversions that irrigate  private pasture those cattle use on the off-season robs fish of the water-flow they need to survive and thrive.

I was recently interviewed by a local (Challis, Idaho) paper in response to Western Watersheds Project’s series of letters notifying government agencies of our intent to sue across central Idaho to ensure public land livestock management doesn’t unlawfully impact Bull Trout, Chinook salmon, steelhead, and Sockeye salmon.  The report was honest to the issue at hand – wildlife, a rarity for this state’s media – so I thought I’d post it :

Commissioners work with feds to head off grazing lawsuits. Todd Adams – Challis Messenger

It’s time to do something about the egregious mismanagement of these important and valued Idaho fisheries : Read the rest of this entry »