A Whackadoodle Response to the Wolf Decision

Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation issues a press release.

I don’t post links to anti-wolf websites or give much credence to their clams but the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation has, as with their previous news release on wolves, issued another hyperbolic press release in response to Judge Malloy’s decision to relist wolves as an endangered species.

The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation used to be more realistic about the effects of wolves but with their new leadership they have lost credibility by making statements like these in reference to wolves:

  • “skyrocketing wolf populations”
  • “greatest wildlife management disaster in America since the wanton destruction of bison herds”
  • “federal statutes and judges actually endorse the annihilation of big game herds, livestock, rural and sporting lifestyles—and possibly even compromise human safety”

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Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation views the upcoming elk hunt

Elk outlook is great reading, especially when compared to views that wolves have killed most of the elk in Idaho, WY, and MT-

Elk hunters and all wildlife enthusiasts will find this fascinating reading for all the states and provinces.

2009 Elk Hunting Forecast.By Jack Ballard. Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.

For the 3 western states with significant wolves, pay close attention, and compare with the data from RMEF’s 2008 forecast.

2008 Elk Hunt Forecast. By Justin Karnopp. Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation

Estimated elk population for the 3 wolf states-

Wyoming

2008 95,000
2009 105,000

– – –
Montana

2008 150,000
2009 150,000

– – –
Idaho

2008 115,000
2009 107,000

So elk population up in WY, stable in Montana, and down a bit in Idaho. This doesn’t mean wolves don’t have local population reduction effects, but in Montana and Wyoming they are offset by some other factors. It doesn’t mean that Idaho’s overall drop is the sole product of wolves.

Of course, when you compare other states with no wolves, there are similar stability or change figures.   C0lorado has by far the most elk, 280,000, but also shows a drop of 12,000 from 2008 to 2009. I think Nevada shows the largest percentage  gain of any state with a significantly large elk population.