Wolves back to Yellowstone and changes it made

After 15 years, a look at the effects-

This interesting article appeared in print maybe 5 days ago. I’m glad they put it online.

After 15 years. By Ben Pierce. Bozeman Chronicle OutThere Editor

Idaho House Concurrent Resolution 43 . . . reduce wolves to 150

How many times did we say Idaho Fish and Game’s 500 wolves plan was meaningless in the face of the legislature?

House Concurrent Resolution 43, now before the Idaho Legislature says that “existing conditions relating to wolves define an emergency condition for all rural Idahoans and, in the face of this emergency, the Legislature encourages the Governor of the state of Idaho to declare that a state of emergency exists in Idaho and to authorize and require the Idaho Department of Fish and Game to use any means to reduce wolf numbers to those designated for recovery of the species [150, 100?] [emphasis added]

Text of Resolution.

A concurrent resolution does not have the force of law, but it clearly shows the ldaho Legislature can wash away Fish and Game’s commitment to maintaining a minimum of 500 wolves in an instant.

I don’t know who they intend the resolution for, but it, with its laughable emergency, should be hand delivered to Judge Molloy.

I can’t help be but irritated that the Fish and Game Department and Commission keeps saying, “no, we promise to maintain 500 wolves, which is more than the minimum.” How many times did we go through right here on this forum ? This also shows why they so want to radio collar wolves in the Frank Church Wilderness — for the token population.

Thanks to Barb Rupers for posting this resolution in the comments. Read the rest of this entry »

Teton Range herd of bighorns at risk of extinction

Winter recreation may be one of the impacts to the remaining bighorn.

This population of bighorn sheep has dwindled to very low numbers. Inbreeding, habitat loss due to development, and domestic sheep disease have restricted these sheep to very high elevation and sites of low productivity so human entry into these areas during winter may have a severe impact.

Teton Range herd of bighorns at risk of extinction
Scientists are exploring ways to reduce risks to isolated sheep.
By Cory Hatch, Jackson Hole, Wyo.

Summary of the February 2010 Yellowstone Earthquake Swarm

Now it’s over and the Yellowstone Volcano Observatory has a summary-

Summary of January – February 2010 Yellowstone Earthquake Swarm. USGS.

This was the second biggest earthquake swarm recorded in the Park. Note that detailed records don’t go back all that far.

Posted in Yellowstone National Park. Tags: . Comments Off on Summary of the February 2010 Yellowstone Earthquake Swarm

F&G to get tough on wolves

This story is one outcome of the leaked Feb. 10 memo-

There was no indication Idaho Fish and Game was ever going to release their memo to the media, but thanks to JeffE, who sent it to me, it has moved out into the public beyond this forum.

Story in today’s Times-News. F&G to get tough on wolves. By Nate Poppino – Times-News writer.

Notice how this is all directed to protect the livestock industry.  Is IDF & G now the Idaho Department of Livestock?

These “unacceptable levels” of livestock losses for 2009 in Idaho were 76 cattle (mostly calves) and 295 sheep. Although the Director of Dept. of Fish and Game implies this is an increase, it is an increase only for sheep. In dollar values this was offset by a decline in cattle losses to wolves. In 2008, 104 cattle were killed by wolves. In 2009 that dropped to a mere 76. Sheep losses increased from 215 to 295.  Individual sheep are worth less than cattle.

For some reason, livestock losses to wolves make the news. Much larger losses get almost no media attention. This suggests to me attention to wolf losses shows a hidden agenda at work unrelated to the actual size of loss. To illustrate this, consider the post from April 24, 2009. SE Montana blizzard kills far more livestock in 2 days than Montana wolves in a year. Will the blizzard story last more than a couple days? Looking back, the story lasted just one day in the on-line news.  However, the size of the livestock loss was greater than the loses to wolves in Montana that year. Note: I never got a final count. I read somewhere that with losses in the Dakotas, it was over 7000!