Idaho is changing. Tim Egan had an essay about it and the wolf hunt today in the New York Times. Hunting Wolves and Men by Tim Egan. Egan has written a great deal about the changing West. This is a continuation of his work.
Kudos to these folks in Sandpoint being willing to literally stand up for wolves.
It’s amusing to see some of the rabid anti-wolf comments to the article complaining about the “Canadian wolves.” Sandpoint is maybe 60 miles from the Canadian border.
Do these nitwits really believe the wolves respected the artificial international boundary and never came a few miles south before they were reintroduced to Central ID in the mid-90s? And what was the origin of these wolves before Canada and the US declared themselves “nations” just a few hundred years ago?
It is common for some contributers to this blog to think that Idaho is very anti-wolf. That is not true.
IDFG did a survey of Idaho adult residents that they published in their Idaho Fish and Game News in May of this year:
31% of the respondents wanted to reduce the wolf population, 34% wanted no reduction,and 35% were neutral.
With the “save them all” and the “reduce them” groups being about equal in number, the neutral folks will be the ones who tip the scales on the wolf issue. When certain people on this site call all Idahoans potato heads and make other disparaging remarks about Idaho residents in general, they run the risk of pushing more people from the neutral group into the “reduce them” crowd.
I timed the Canyon Pack in Yellowstone last fall as they traveled from Norris to Canyon (about 14 miles). It took them 1 hour and 15 minutes. Wolves could travel from the Canadian border to Sandpoint in less than a day.
THE MISSOULIAN quoted the Idaho hunter who killed the first wolf of the season as saying that after the kill, “I had an adrenal rush as I heard wolves howling all around me.” Did think about why the wolves were howling, or about the negative impact of hunting and killing so many of them will change the stability of their packs and of the wolf population as a whole?
From the Spikesman-Review http://www.spokesman.com/blogs/hbo/2009/aug/28/wolf-alliance-cda-protest-hunt/
“Members of the Sandpoint-based North Idaho Wolf Alliance turned out at the Coeur d’Alene Fish and Game office Friday morning to protest the state’s first regulated wolf hunt. Alongside the protesters was a smaller group who came out to show their support of the upcoming hunts. Approximately 40 protestors gathered at the scene, while 15 wolf hunt supporters gathered. The rally, which began at 11 a.m., consisted mainly of protestors and supporters carrying signs.”