Fed judge says Greater Yellowstone grizzlies must go back on list!

Grizzly feeding on elk © Ken Cole

Grizzly feeding on elk © Ken Cole

GYE grizzly bears go back on the threatened species list-

Molloy: Feds must restore protection for grizzly bears in Yellowstone National Park – By Matthew Brown. Associated Press. The successful plaintiff was the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. There is a second lawsuit filed in Idaho by a number of other conservation groups. It was assigned to Judge Lodge. No decision was been made by the court.

The headline in Brown’s story is misleading because the order to relist is not just for Yellowstone Park, but for the much larger area around the Park — the “greater” Yellowstone, and relisting’s effect for this area is where most of the controversy lies.

U.S. judge reverses Bush, puts grizzlies on endangered [threatened] list. By Rocky Barker. Idaho Statesman

Read the judge’s Order

Grizzly Bears had remained on the list in the Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem and the Cabinet-Yaak (both in NW Montana). They have also remained on the list in the Selkirk (Northern Idaho and NE Washington state), the Selway-Bitterroot in central Idaho where there are no bears, and the North Cascades where there are a handful of bears up in northwest Washington against the B.C. border.  However, the grizzlies of Yellowstone and the adjacent area are the best known population in the lower 48.

The numerous threats to grizzly bear food sources, especially whitebark pine, were a major factor in Judge Molloy’s decision.

Earthjustice’s Press Release :

Read the rest of this entry »

Merle Haggard, tell us how you really feel about your local ranchers!

Famous country and western singer Merle Haggard is no friend of his local cattle ranchers-

“The thing that bothers me the most is the recklessness and greed of the local ranchers, who run too many cattle back here, choking with waste the creek that runs through my property.  There’s certain times of day that the cowboys like to send them turds down the river.  Them fuckers piss me off.  if you gotta mess up the ecology of the world in order to raise a bunch of cows, well eat somethin else.  I’m not a fan of the cowboys.”   –  Merle Haggard,  Rolling Stone, 10/1/09

More of Obama’s weak salmon recovery plan

Obama’s “warmed-over-Dubya plan” for salmon is good enough to irritate Rep. Doc Hastings, however-

We posted on this earlier. Reaction continues to come.

Under Obama’s new salmon plan, breeching the dams on the Snake River in that state of Washington would be a last resort, rather than the plan salmon recovery advocates had hoped for and kind of expected. Under Bush breaching the dams wasn’t to be considered under any condition.

However, the new plan’s critics call it “warmed over Bush.” It isn’t so much salmon advocates that Obama has to please, however, it is federal judge Redden. Redden in the past has rejected five biOps (biological opinions from various Administrations) of how they can keep the dams and recovery the salmon too. The standard they have used is that their plan will keep the salmon “trended toward recovery.” This standard is not recognized by Endangered Species Act, but Obama, like Bush uses it.

Conservation groups hope the Redden rejects this plan and says he is out of patience. Tear down the dams. Redden has said in the past that he might do just that.

Nevertheless, the hint of breaching in the new plan has the local Republican representative “Doc Hastings” upset. It seems to me that this is another situation where the President could educate the Republicans that militant opposition to his policies has a cost.

Rocky Barker put up a video of Hastings cross examining the NOAA Administrator explaining the dam breaching possibility.

2009 Bear Spray Campaign Endangers Hunters, Grizzlies

David Smith urges IGBC to change its bear spray campaign slogan to “Carry bear spray and know when to use it.”

Smith urges what might seem to be subtle but very important change in the way the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee educates hunters about bear spray.  However, for 2009 the IGBC is using the same arguments as it has for years.

2009 Bear Spray Campaign Endangers Hunters, Grizzlies. Unfiltered By David Smith in New West.