11 October 2013 Wolf Weekly Wrap-up Posted by: John Motsinger | 14 comments | Share: Wolf expert Carter Niemeyer leads a winter animal tracking trip in Idaho. Good news, bad news in Washington – The good news is, long-time friend of Defenders Carter Niemeyer was recently hired by Washington State University (WSU) to teach nonlethal wolf-livestock conflict prevention techniques. Carter spent many years as a government trapper and as wolf recovery coordinator in Idaho, so he has a wealth of experience to draw from. He’s worked extensively with both ranchers and environmentalists to develop ways to reduce the risk of losing livestock to wolves. WSU has also set up a graduate student program for examining and evaluating nonlethal wolf deterrents and livestock management strategies. This is exactly what we hoped to see happen – a state taking the lead on demonstrating how nonlethal approaches can be applied at a much larger scale. This is greatly encouraging and will hopefully keep the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife on a path toward a more constructive role in conflict prevention. It should also help increase the scientific evaluation of the range of tools being used in the field today. The bad news is that the state wildlife commission did approve several minor changes to its wolf management plan last week that will make it easier to kill wolves without a permit. Read more from The Wenatchee World. We’ll consider that two steps forward and one step back. Lobo rally runs 300 strong – The Save the Lobo rally in Albuquerque last Friday was our best one yet! Some 300 people turned out, even though the official public hearing had been postponed indefinitely by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service due to the federal government shutdown. Wolf supporters arrived from as far as Utah, Colorado and New York, and comments were collected during a “Citizen’s Hearing” to urge FWS to come up with a stronger plan to protect Mexican gray wolves. The event was sponsored by Defenders and our partner groups working on Mexican wolf recovery in the Southwest. Our Southwest Program Director Eva Sargent was one of the featured speakers, and Defenders’ outreach team led a training session to teach our activists how to hone their skills and deliver effective public testimony. Now they will all be ready and raring to go when the Fish and Wildlife Service’s public hearing gets rescheduled. Thanks to all our supporters who showed up to help save our lobos! Not surprisingly, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced this week that it is also postponing its public hearing in Denver. However, Defenders and our conservation allies are putting on a Colorado Citizens’ Hearing in Denver on Oct. 16 to make sure that local citizens have the chance to voice their opinions as well. See flyer for details. Wolf tracks. Photo courtesy of U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. First 50 wolves fall – Wolf hunting seasons are now open in Wyoming, Idaho and Montana and nearly 70 wolves have been killed in just a month and a half. In addition, 28 wolves have been killed in Wyoming’s predator zone since the beginning of this year, and more have been removed in all three states in response to livestock conflicts. These numbers are likely to rise sharply over the next couple months as winter sets in and trapping seasons begin to open. Fortunately, Wyoming cut its hunting quota in half this year to make sure at least 100 wolves are maintained outside of Yellowstone National Park – a low bar indeed, but far better than the “open season” declared across over 80%percent of the state. Oregon perspectives – Aimee Lynn Eaton was busy this week promoting her new book on wolves in Oregon titled, Collared: Politics and Personalities in Oregon’s Wolf Country. Eaton spent time traveling the state capturing Oregonians’ stories about the return of wolves and how it affects their attitude and livelihood. If you have a chance to read it, let us know what you think. 14 Responses to “Wolf Weekly Wrap-up” Linda Jo Hunter October 11th, 2013 The only good thing about the government shutdown is the closure of national parks for a while so the animals get a break. Claudia Gibson October 11th, 2013 So unnecessary and cruel. Out of touch with the natural world. These.idiots will kill us all. Martie October 11th, 2013 Seems to me the problem is not the wolf, but the lazy ranchers who fail to get off their bums to protect their herds. These lazy excuses of humans expects ALL to watch over their livestock…except themselves. If livestock is the problem, then exterminate these animals for the greater good. With the largest cattle ranch being in Hawaii, not the lower 48, meat prices won’t be terribly effected. Carrie October 12th, 2013 These hunters are cowards hunting down collared (or not) wolves with high powered rifles – helicopters, snowmobiles. Man up and hunt with even odds. FWS aren’t doing enough to protect our wolves and other wildlife. Carrie October 12th, 2013 Blessed are the Native Americans for appreciating, respecting, and protecting God’s gift of Wildlife and Mother Earth. vibeke hansen October 12th, 2013 danich. jeg forstår ikke mennesket mere, om deres holdninger til dyrelivet uden for deres hjem—- er vi kommet så langt fra naturens verden ????—- HUSK, der er også en generation efter os, der skal nyde vores dyreliv !!!!!! Nick Adrian October 13th, 2013 I just drove from Denver, Colorado to Anchorage, Alaska and saw zero wolves. I saw several dead cows and horses rotting on the ground on ranches in Wyoming though. Elin Menzies October 14th, 2013 These wonderful animals are important to our ecosystem. Protecting them is protecting ourselves. Elin Menzies October 14th, 2013 these wonderful animals are important to our ecosystem and to us. protecting them is protecting ourselves. Janet Gordon October 14th, 2013 Re: Linda Hunters comment above. I agree. The BEST thing about the Government Shutdown of the National Parks is that the wildlife will get a much needed break from US. Unfortunately, it won’t be long enough. The bad thing is that hundreds will go in anyway and there will be no oversight to control the people carrying guns. . Laura Lemmons October 14th, 2013 I agree with Linda on this one. Thats the only good coming out of this shutdown. Michael Guest October 14th, 2013 My concern is still on the wolves. The protections must stay in place, for their survival and future. Carlos Vargas October 16th, 2013 I can understand the frustration, we own an Alaskan Timber wolves he is very beautiful…fight for our animals we owe it to them. William Chamberlain October 23rd, 2013 The problem is obviously not the wolf – it is USFWS and DOI. This proposal is a reflection of the integrity and ethics of many of our governmental officials. They are appointed and they feel they do not have to answer to the public. Those opposing this proposal (including Defenders) must read and understand it and address the specific issues in it. USFWS is looking for scientific opposition to it. We need to give them more of it than they can handle. It proposes 3 unrelated actions that have no basis in science though the proposal is 58 pages of “biological bull” Two of these actions should be opposed and one that should be supported. This devious tactic was a deliberate effort to confuse the issues and the public. It contradicts the basic intent of the ESA and violates no less than 5 specific provisions in it. I know numerous people employed by USFWS and they have said publicly in uniform that there is no real biological basis for delisting any of Canis lupus including those already delisted. They have said that this proposal is motivated by politics and special interests and the money derived from both. We are a salmon swimming up stream. As of this writing the public comment period ends on Oct 28. Everyone’s comments must be mailed and received by 11:59pm Oct 28 to the following address: It is the official public comment address – - - PUBLIC COMMENT PROCESSING Att: FWS HQ ES 2013 0073 Division of Policy and Directives Management U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 4401 N. Fairfax Drive MS 2042 PDM Arlington, VA 22203 Post Your Comment Click here to cancel reply. Name (required) Mail (required) (will not be published) You May also be interested in Wolf Weekly Wrap-Up Recap of Pinetop Hearing; Celebrating Sucesses: 700,000 comments from wolf supports in to USFWS regarding wolf delisting proposal; this week USDA annouces they plan to audit Wildlife Services Predator Program. Also- another call to action for our supporters: Tell your Congressman to sign Grijalva and Fitzpatrick’s letter endorsing continued protection of gray wolves! Audit of Wildlife Services to be Conducted in 2014 United States Department of Agriculture’s Inspector General has confirmed that they will be undertaking an audit of Wildlife Services’ Predator Control program in 2014. A rare sighting at Skilak In a remote part of Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, our Alaska representative catches a rare glimpse of a majestic but elusive animal.