Montana FWP wants local anti-bison judge replaced on Gardiner Basin bison case

Judge who singlehandedly stopped years-in-making decision to let bison roam, not acceptable, says FWP-

Finally, after years, state and federal government agencies agreed to let bison begin to roam the Gardiner Basin just north of Yellowstone Park, but Park County district judge Nels Swandal sided with the Park County Stockgrowers Association to put the landmark agreement aside.

The stockgrowers were effective with their tired, but still effective arguments about spread of brucellosis and danger to people (the classic children at the bus stop argument). “Large numbers of bison now regularly congregate at school bus stops and other locations, interacting with children, elderly, and other individuals that live in the area to a degree not previously encountered,” Park County’s lawsuit stated.

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks and other agencies are asking for a new judge, but the existing judge (Swandal) gets to pick any replacement.

State wants new judge in bison case. By Carly Flandro. Bozeman Chronicle.

Meanwhile, we haven’t heard anything more about Park County prosecuting the man cited for shooting numerous .22 rounds among the houses to kill a bison.

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Regarding the views and actions of the Park County Commissioners, here is an interesting guest editorial. Guest column: We must rein in fears, attitudes over roaming bison. By Karrie Taggart (co-founder/coordinator of Horse Butte Neighbors of Buffalo in West Yellowstone — HOBNOB)

Local judge stifles free roaming bison reforms

Park County, Montana judge issues a temporary restraining order to prevent bison from roaming Gardiner Basin

This means trouble for the bison just released from the pens on the north boundary of Yellowstone Park. I see they are still playing the brucellosis card and the new Old West favorite, We’re scared of the animals!!

Park County judge halts bison changes. AP

Yellowstone’s east gate opens. Southern on Friday

There is a lot of deep snow-

The west entrance has been open for some time, but the East Entrance opened May 6 to five feet of snow. The southern gate of the Park from Jackson Hole and the Tetons will open May 13. There is deep snow here too, especially at Lewis River Divide.

The penned bison at the north boundary have been released. Hopefully they will go into the Park where grass is greening in the small lower elevation portion near the Yellowstone and Gardner Rivers.

Bob Landis wins a big award

The story of wolf 302M gets Best Animal Behavior film award-

Bob Landis in the Lamar Valley © Ken Cole

Bob Landis in the Lamar Valley © Ken Cole


Rebel, rebel. Black Wolf yields a wild hero. By Erika Frederickson. Missoula Independent.

Bison ‘managers’ kill calf

Montana Bison ‘managers’ kill calf north of West Yellowstone-

Bison are now allowed to leave the Park to the west in the winter at Horse Butte, but they are supposed to be back in the Park at an abnormally early time.

This year the Park is still under snow. The brutal Montana Department of Livestock hazed the bison toward the Park until the calf died. From the Island Park [Idaho] News- Bison ‘managers’ kill calf

Hundreds of bison were also held at the North Entrance of the Park. They have/had no grass to eat. There was talk about slaughtering a hundred of them, but that was forestalled.  Many of them were released in early May, but they went north out of the Park instead of back into it. They were recaptured. Yellowstone hopes to release bison back into park for summer.  by Adam Bell. KBZK

Meanwhile, cold and rain/snowy days continue well into May. The Park will be green when the snow finally melts and it finally warms.


Yellowstone bears and wolves fight over carcasses

Their ancient struggle apparently has little effect on their populations-

That’s the conclusion of Dr. Doug Smith who heads the Park’s wolf program.

I think that might well be true overall, but Yellowstone Park is a small place when it comes to major predators.  With the wolf population in the Park as small as it now is, random fluctuations of predatory effects might, in my opinion, have an important effect on the wolves as far as the Park alone is concerned. . . RM

Bears butting in on Yellowstone wolf kills. Battle of carnivores ultimately has little effect on population. By Cory Hatch. Jackson Hole News and Guide.

Montana probes killing of Yellowstone buffalo

Park bison killed by small arms fire-

It is redundant to call this sad and dangerous. Small arms are used not primarily to cause suffering, but to avoid a loud report from the gun attracting attention. Rural neighbors who are out to settle scores kill each others livestock this way.

Montana probes killing of Yellowstone buffalo. Laura Zuckerman. Reuters US Online Report Domestic News

Addition. Here is the story in the Island Park, Idaho newspaper. Bison haters attack roam-free policy.

4/23. More. Story makes it the U. K. Hunt for the Yellowstone bison serial killer after beasts shot in protected national park. The Daily Mail.