Niemeyer: Wolves didn’t kill cow near Eagle last week

It died of birthing problems

Last week there was a big story about how wolves had killed a cow in the foothills above Eagle, Idaho, which most of you probably know is just west of Boise. Well, Carter Niemeyer, – the Montana western supervisor for Wildlife Services from 1975-1990 and the Wildlife Services Montana wolf specialist for the following 10 years until he took a post in Idaho as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s wolf recovery coordinator – did his own investigation and says that wolves didn’t kill the cow.

Here are the comments that I received today from Carter about the findings of his own investigation: Read the rest of this entry »

Mexican wolf population finally increases a bit

Grows from 42 to 50 in the year 2010-

Finally there’s a little bit of good news about Mexican wolves. After the population stagnated well below the recovery figure of 100 wolves, I has declined in recent years.  In 2010, on the strength of wild born pups and a halt on government killing for livestock depredations, it grew by 8.  The wolves were about equally distributed between Arizona and New Mexico.

Illegal shootings were the leading cause of death.

Federal biologists count 50 Mexican wolves in wild. Associated Press

Orrin Hatch Reintroduces Wolf Legislation

Bill already has opposition in the Senate

Yesterday, Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) reintroduced a bill (S.249) described as “[a] bill to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to provide that Act shall not apply to any gray wolf (Canis lupus).” This, in effect, could lead to the eradication of wolves anyplace in the U.S. especially in areas such as the Northern Rockies and those Mexican Gray Wolves in Arizona and New Mexico.

The legislation has opposition which means that it is unlikely to pass the Democratically controlled Senate. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, and Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD), Chairman of the Water and Wildlife Subcommittee, made the following statement on the legislation:

“The Endangered Species Act is one of the nation’s landmark environmental laws and has protected iconic species like the bald eagle. The Act, which unanimously passed the Senate and was signed into law by President Nixon, relies on the best available science to make decisions about how to protect the nation’s threatened and endangered species.

Legislation introduced today that completely and irreversibly removes the Gray Wolf from the list of threatened and endangered species sets a dangerous precedent that undermines the Endangered Species Act and threatens the continued existence of the Gray Wolf across this country.

We objected to moving similar legislation on the floor of the Senate in December of last year, and we remain just as opposed today. But we also look forward to working with our colleagues on an approach that follows the science, addresses the concerns of local communities, and upholds the integrity of the Endangered Species Act.”

Sen. Orrin Hatch Reintroduces Legislation to Empower Utah and Other Western States to Manage Wolf Populations
By: Kramer Phillips – The State Column