Killing Wolves To Save Wolves? What?

May 13, 2010

I was reading the sermon, I mean article, in High Country News, on why wolf hunters are doing wolves a favor by killing them. It’s called  “One Way to Save the Wolf? Hunt It. Montana wildlife managers deem the first wolf season a success, for both hunters and hunted”

I can tell you without hesitation that the wolves slaughtered in Montana’s hunts would much rather be alive then dead. I’m positive that being blasted in the guts, dying an agonizing death is not preferable to running through the woods, alive and breathing with your pack mates. Seriously, was this written for anyone but trophy hunters, who derive pleasure from killing beauty?

The article suggests that somehow the hunts have shifted people’s perceptions of wolf hunting and the only way to build a  constituency for wolves is to hunt them. Oh the hypocrisy!  Here’s our wolf manager in chief, Carolyn Sime, warning that if we don’t kill wolves to save wolves we’re playing a dangerous game.

Sime believes that those who oppose the wolf season are playing a dangerous game. “You can have wolves as game animals, and hunters who pay to hunt them, or you go with Wildlife Services, and have the taxpayers pay for the control,” she says. Wildlife Services is the federal agency tasked with killing “nuisance” animals, including everything from feral dogs that attack people, to coyotes that threaten livestock, to birds that hang out around airports. Federal shooters killed about 145 wolves in Montana last year, out of an estimated population of 524.

So Wildlife Services is going to stop killing wolves if the state allows continued wolf hunts? Yeah right, that will happen. The truth is wolves now have to dodge bullets from wolf hunters AND Wildlife Services, who act as the ranchers private wolf extermination service.

Between the “wonderful, helpful wolf hunts” and Wildlife Services slaughtering them for agribusiness, 220 wolves lost their lives in Montana in 2009 and that’s not including poaching or SSS.  Now the state wants to almost triple the hunt quota from 75 to  216 wolves for the 2010 hunt. That means if  Wildlife Services kills as many or more wolves in 2010 and the hunts take 216 wolves, plus poaching and general wolf mortality, that could reduce the wolf population to between 100-150 wolves from the current population of 524 by the end of this year. Isn’t that great? Wolf Extermination Part Two but I digress.

Just to set the record straight, I’m outraged about what is happening to wolves and I know I speak for other wolf advocates. We haven’t given up or thrown in the towel. We’re waiting to see if Judge Molloy relists wolves and puts a stop to the hunts. I do not and will never condone killing wolves for sport. I think it’s disgusting, brutal, unnecessary blood lust. Anyone that kills animals for sport has my utter contempt.  The only thing in the entire “Love a wolf/Kill a wolf” article I agree with is the second paragraph.

From the High Country News:

“Montana’s first-ever wolf season was viewed with horror by many environmental groups, and by many people who have celebrated the charismatic predator’s return to the Northern Rockies. The hunt was simply too much, too soon, they said; it would kill off the alpha males and females that are the primary breeders and break the slowly building matrix of genetic diversity that is key to the long-term health of the returning populations. They predicted that leaderless wolf packs would go after even more livestock, leading to more wolf-killing by the federal Wildlife Services. The wolves’ positive effects on the ecosystem — keeping coyote numbers in check, scattering elk that were overgrazing their winter ranges — could be reversed.”

Hunting a species mere months off the endangered species list?  That’s responsible “management”?  The state of Montana rushed to sell wolf tags and make a buck off wolves lives, they sold 15,603 tags which generated $325,916 for state coffers. All this to kill 75 wolves.

Now Montana is proposing to increase the wolf hunt quotas after only recently giving Wildlife Services full discretion  to kill wolves for agribusiness.

Is there any doubt wolves need ESA protection in this hostile environment?  This is why states should NOT be “managing” wolves. It’s an obvious conflict of  interest because the state game agencies, that are in charge of wolves, receive money from hunter’s licensing fees. Get it?

Oh but wait, I forgot, we’re killing wolves to save wolves. Yeah right. Tell that to the wolves.

The most disturbing part of this piece was the Montana FWP wolf manager and wildlife biologist, Mike Ross’s account of killing a six year old male wolf.  That couldn’t be construed as exploiting  his position as a wolf manager? I mean he doesn’t study Montana’s wolves for a living and know where every single wolf pack resides in the state or anything.  He’s just a hunter having a hell of a good time killing a wolf.  Nobody should be outraged by this? Right?  Uh-huh.

Here’s the breathless account of  shooting a wolf to death:

“I’m 48 years old, and I’ve been hunting since I was 9, and I’ve never had a more exciting day of hunting in my life,” Ross says. Ross had a coveted permit, one of only five issued, drawn by lottery to hunt bull elk in what may be the world’s best elk country. “My girlfriend, Colleen, and I saw some pretty good bulls, but I was looking for at least a 340 (Boone and Crockett). We heard wolves howling in the morning, and after lunch … 10 wolves came out on an open ridge, flopped down in the sun, kind of belly-up. Colleen said, ‘Let’s go after them.’ “

The two hunters crossed the river and climbed up to where they could see across to the ridge. “But they were gone,” Ross says. The wolf pack was hidden in a patch of timber above them when Ross “howled them up.” “The woods just opened up,” Ross says, “howls everywhere, coming down on us, just wild, and I thought for a second, ‘How many bullets do we have?’ Then there were wolves below us, too.” Ross howled again, and a big male wolf stepped from the timber above them. “He moved around us, and when he came out in the open, I shot him.” The 6-year-old male wolf was black and weighed 117 pounds. Ross remains awed by the experience. “If you went out there a hundred times and tried to do something like this, you couldn’t do it. It was hunting, you know, where everything comes together all of a sudden. I think those wolves were in a competitive situation with another pack, and they came in like coming into a gang fight. I’ll never forget it.” Ross says that he “got quite a bit of flak for shooting a wolf, people saying I exploited my job. I don’t want anybody to think that. I was out hunting, I had a wolf tag, and we got into them. That’s all.”

Wow that was thrilling. I was on the edge of my seat reading that. That wolf should be so grateful that Ross killed him and had such a great and awesome time doing  it.

Excuse me but should one of Montana’s wolf mangers be bragging  about his special moment killing a wolf? Does anyone else find this concerning?  After all isn’t his job “managing”, studying and tracking wolves, supposedly looking out for them? Yet he describes killing a wolf as if he’d just had an out-of-body experience. Is this who we want managing wolves in Montana? I feel so much better knowing one of Montana’s wolf managers enjoys killing wolves.  That’s just swell.

“If you went out there a hundred times and tried to do something like this, you couldn’t do it. It was hunting, you know, where everything comes together all of a sudden. I think those wolves were in a competitive situation with another pack, and they came in like coming into a gang fight. I’ll never forget it.” Ross says.”

Epic Fail…


Photo: wolf wallpaper

Posted in: Montana wolves,  Howling for Justice, Wolf Wars

Tags: cavemen, chest thumping, trophy hunting, wolves in the cross fire, wolf persecution, Montana wolf hunts

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54 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Please excuse the impolite language:

    Save a wolf = hunt them?
    Excuse me but, given the situation, that is like giving a bully full authority in the school yard. And we’ve already seen the so-called *’successes’ of last year’s hunt, haven’t we? (*sarcasm)
    All hunting stories are the same, just some idiot/s with a gun trying to big-note themselves. As for Ross and his girlfriend: just another couple of cold blooded freaks. Save the B.S. “saving wolves from fighting each other” for your sport hunting friends, that territory as well as the rest of the pack whose alpha you shot are probably going to be killed or severely injured by the rival pack, the pups that can’t get away will be killed by the rival pack members and all because YOU WANTED A WOLF SKIN/HEAD ON YOUR WALL.

    No, Ross, we see past all that ‘stars line up’ B.S.
    If that’s really what they feel then that’s some demented view of the natural world and they need some immediate medical treatment. Wolves don’t get any thrill out of killing, hell no predator does because its damned hard and dangerous work! No this blood junkie and the rest of those following in his footsteps are little more than demented killers who have nothing to fear and that’s why they enjoy it so much. Perhaps a swift kick in the gut or head by an elk would teach them some modesty. Tradition or hobby or whatever the hell these twisted b/s/ards call it has no place in the modern world and should be done away with for good. How many more species do we have to lose before these people get their heads out of their asses and realise the bigger picture?

    • Isn’t it unbelievable John? I love their logic. Killing wolves to save wolves. Yeah that worked out real well during the last wolf extermination in the West. They are so full of it….with their chest thumping and caveman behavior. I’m sorry to say but sometimes rifles become extentions of some other part of the body that might not be working so well, if you catch my drift. Or to put it another way, trophy hunting could be a form of Viagra.


    • Sorry I had to reply for your comment but when I clicked on leave a comment it would not work. I have a ideal how many believe in the power of prayer? How about we get together and have a prayer vigil for the wolves?I do not think it would be hard God said that where 2 or more people are gathered in my name I will be among them. The only thing we need to do is figure out the different times zones so we are all praying at the same time. Don’t you think it is worth a try? I have seen it work before. Now i know there are many who probably do not believe in God but it is worth a try than sitting and doing nothing. It is so worth a try cause I personally know it will work. I would try anything to save the wolves they have the right to live just like everyone else.

  2. Correction: That territory *is going to be taken over*

  3. If you say something long enough and hard enough you can make yourself believe anything and make the wrong right,Sime and others have been doing just that for a long time.Sad for the wolves.Let the wolves be what they are,wolves.

    • So true Rita. Wolves are the least likely predator to attack man. They are very shy except in the case of the wolves in Yellowstone who are partially habituated to people. Two deaths in fifty years in North America, when deer kill a hundred people a year and thousands die in deer related traffic accidents. The wolf hysteria would be laughable if it wasn’t so deadly serious for wolves.


  4. Look at how the scumbag has a grin on his face holding the dead wolf. These cowards would be so helpless if they faced a wolf with no gun in hand.

    • He makes me sick John. That poor wolf. I can’t imagine how agonizing it must be to die such a horrible death at the hands of someone like that. They wouldn’t be so brave if they were out in the forest and had to face a grizzly alone. They’re only brave when they have their scopes and rifles.


  5. As much as I agree with you Jon,but I don’t think that wolves,on the whole, go and attack men.They tend to try to avoid us as much as possible.They are curious of their surroundings.They just want to be wild and do the things that they were attended to do,but put man into the equation,it’s a whole new ball park.Wolves don’t get to eat every,for not every hunt is successfull one.Let’s not forget how hard it is for the wolf to defend it’s kill.Men go out and buy tags and want the availabiliy of them.They are used to one thing and when times get tough,they do not want to be told on how many elk that they can take down.

    • I meant to write that wolves do not eat every day.Sorry I am chasing an ative 5 year old around.

  6. N, I sadly agree with all the above but with one exception.
    I will never throw the towel in. I may have some bad days but I aint going anywhere! I am sure many of you feel the same way. M

    • I will never give up either,Marc.

      • March on wolf warriors. I look forward to the day when wolves can live without persecution.

        For the wolves, For the wild ones,


    • Hi Agnes,
      I know it’s terribly sad. I pondered whether to even post that picture because it’s very upsetting but I wanted to remind people what a horror wolf hunting is. Those wolves die agonizing deaths. Hopefully Molloy will relist them this summer. But no matter what happens we have to fight on for the wolves.


  8. Idaho is now going to allow trapping and the use of electronic calls, soon we will be able to shoot them at night!

    • They should be ashamed but they’re are pushing the limits as far as they can go. I don’t think there will be a hunt in either state this year because Molloy will relist wolves. But anything can happen. What’s with the name wolf eater?


      • Call me suspicious but judging by this person’s use of grammar, sounds like a rabble-rouser.

      • I have seen his posts on other commentaries,newspapers and such.He is not for the wolf.He should crawl back to the hole he got out of.

      • It’s shameful he even works for the State of Montana as a wolf biologist and manager. The entire wolf management team is loaded with wolf hunters and people that support killing wolves. Where are the environmentalists and wolf advocates on the team??


  9. Agnes,I know it is upsetting and I am not the web master,but out of respect, please watch using so much curse words. I wouldn’t want people,mainly children, to shy away from what is being said here and hoping that they will be better informed about the wolves and their struggle and about our struggle to save them. I feel outrage,too.My heart aches for them and for the other predators.What scares me is that these people sleep at night.

  10. Hi Agnes,
    I know you’re passionate about wolves, as we all are but we need to refrain from over the top profanity. This should be a place where all wolf advocates feel comfortable to post.

    I know the wolves thank you for caring so deeply.

    This has been the worst year for wolves in the Northern Rockies since their reintroduction. I share your outrage, believe me.

    For the wolves, For the wild ones


      Check that link out NABEKI.

      • Thanks Jon for the link. I was in the middle of writing a new post about what Montana and Idaho are doing to wolves. This is one more egregious act. We have to speak out.

        For the wolves, For the wildones,

  11. Biggest case of serious brain problems and hypocrisy in its full bloom.
    Really. What´s going on to that people? What have they been eating recently? Sure, the wolves are now going to party for getting killed.

    • Hi Loua,
      That article was a propoganda piece in defense of trophy hunting. They are patting themselves on the back for killing over 500 wolves in the Northern Rockies.


  12. I am utterly horrified by that picture of the dead wolf. You can imagine it in your mind but it is even worse seeing it! Living in MT they posted the first wolf killed on the front of the newspaper (all propped up with the gun and such….) and it was horrible! It was front page news, the guy did get some threats but mostly he was proud of being the first one. I am not a hunter of any kind, but killing the wolf makes me more sad than any other creature. I guess they need us to be their advocates because they are hated and thought of as useless vermin. It is obvious, even to those who are not biologists, that this creature has a place in the wild and we need it there. I rambled….sorry! Thank you for all you do for the wolf!

    • Hi Tracy,
      I know the picture was horrific. But I wanted to make the point that just talking about wolf hunting makes it so sterile and sometimes we have to be reminded what it really looks like. The media cleans it up, not showing the real horror of it. National Geographic posted a picture of the wolf killed by Robert Millage, the wolf was laying there like it was resting. The picture I posted is the real face of wolf hunting. It’s bloody and the wolves die horrible painful deaths.

      Wolves are being abolutely savaged right now. The states are doing exactly what I thought they would do when wolves were turned over to them. They could care less about wolves, they’re just “managing” them for the hunters and ranchers. I am sick inside every day from all the killing.

      Finally Judge Molloy is holding oral arguments on the delisting lawsuit June 15th and hopefully will rule to relist the wolves soon after. I’m not naive to think it will end the matter because I’m sure his decision will be appealed or USFWS will try to rewrite the rules to get wolves delisted again. But we must fight on for wolves no matter what happens.

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,

      • I totally understand what you mean about the photo of the wolf, I know I just try to avoid those because they make me feel so bad. Yes, that one that was “posed” also made me sick, though all the blood was not showing….it was set up real nice. I hope they get relisted though the fight will have to go on. I see this as something you never can give up on, they won’t be safe because certain people just hate them and want to exterminate them by any means. I have NO idea how people can think this way…it is so sad. I hope Molloy does the right thing.

      • It’s must getting worse and worse Tracy. Everyday there is news of more wolf killing. We have to raise our voices the way wolf haters are doing. We have to let the states know we will boycott all businesses in Idaho and Montana that support the jihad on wolves.
        This has truly gotten out of hand.


  13. Mike Ross, a “wolf manager ” for MFWP thinks nothing of killing the animals that he has worked to re-introduce! I’m sure he knew exactly where this pack hung out and it was like “shooting fish in a barrel”.
    Obviously, the THRILL of KILLING affected his judgement.

    • You are right Jerry but I think Ross made a huge mistake waxing poetic about his wolf killing experience to the press. Montana FWP just lost even more credibility.

      Of course he knows where the wolf packs are, he’s privy to that information AND he’s a wolf biologist. Did you read how he “howled them up”? The whole thing stinks to high heaven. This is what is passing as wolf “management” in Montana. Disgusting!


      • He should be trying to save wolves, not brag about sport hunting one Nabeki.

  14. these poor beautiful creatures,I dont understand the hatred toward them. but of course man always has to destroy the beauty around him.they are only trying to survive like everything else on the planet,they dont attack people,they only kill what they need to survive and pick the sick or weak animals that are suffering anyhow. lets continue to do all that we can to help stop the madness of these hunters who have no regard for Gods creatures

    • Hi Shawn,
      It is a true disaster but we have to speak out and let the states know we want it to stop. Boycott all busness in Montana and Idaho that support the wolf killing.


  15. Not wolf management, wolf killing. They need to stop using that word management as Georg Wuerthner said because it is just a fancy way of saying wolf killing. Call it for what it really is, wolf killing. With what is going on now, it starting to look more and more like the 1930s. They just came off the endangered species not too long ago and already they are being killed by these cowardly sport hunters. Hundreds and hundreds of wolves are going tolose their lives just so hunters can think that by killing wolves, there will be more elk for them to shoot.

    • Jon…whenever I use the word management I always put it in parenthesis to show that it really means killing them. They make me sick.


  16. The guy holding up the dead wolf is creepy. Just look at him! He is SMILING!!!!

    • It’s horribly creepy Loua.


  17. OMFG!
    Words fail me!
    I think that wolf biologist should lose his job! He howled them up? And they came and he slaughtered one?

    • Hi Crystalwolf,
      I was appalled by the “howling them up”….what a mighty hunter. He should be ashamed!!


  18. Mr. Ross should recuse himself from any more work in the field of “wolf management” and Caroline Sime should follow. MFWP needs someone like Cristina Eisenberg who understands the complex role wolves play in naturally functioning ecosystems.
    The current “managers” are nothing but puppets for the livestock and outfitter industries.

    • Completely agree Jerry, he’s lost all credibility as a wolf manager. Just unbelievable that he would relate that story to the media AND they would actually print it, like it’s some badge of honor.


  19. I have been fighitng on there behalf since they got reintroduced and the first wolf was tortured and killed. I got a tatoo on my shoulder sayong i am a voice forthe wolve, I will die fighting to stand up forthem, they dont desrve what is happenimg to them!!! I write letters have been to the hostile rac meetings,I am writing letters now to try to keep them on the esa. Ilove the wolve everything about them my heart is broken with such deep sadness for them I will never give up!!!!

    • Hi Tracy,
      Thanks for sharing…I know we are in a huge battle for wolves but thank you for doing all you can for them. Wolf Warriors and Howling For Justice is with you all the way. Onward Wolf Warriors.


  20. That gross, evil man. Those poor, beautiful Wolves. Just like the author of this Blog, I cry when I read and write these. Wolves mean everything to me, and nobody could say anything more hurtful to me than ‘Wolves are gross, they should all be shot’. I think i’d faint if I saw a real life, dead Wolf. Even in story books when they kill a Wolf, I cry. Even in ‘Little Red Riding Hood’, I just want to rip the book up.

  21. Wolf hunting is stupid and outragous. why kill the wolves?? what did they ever do to u?? kill and eat some of ur livestock?? big whoop! all they do is exactly wat we do: eat to live. so ur going to punish a wolf for trying to stay alive which is wat we all do. how would u feel if that was u?? not so great huh?? this hunting the wolves crap is sooo stupid so stop!! SAVE THE WOLVES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  22. wolves are a natural part of the eco system and they deserve to keep their place in it…we humans, like everything else we destroy, will be sorry when these beautiful creaters are gone for good. I dont want to live in a world without them…..or have the only place we can see them is behind bars in a cage at the zoo.

    • Thank you wolfpacks87…I agree with you 100%!!!

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,

  23. wolves are beautiful creatures, so they should be left in peace!!!!!!!! These ‘hunters’ need to use their brains! or do they have only air in there? these “hunters” are ju idiots with guns shooting anything they can!

    im 13 and i already know that this ‘wolf management stuff’ is so stupid the people who thought of that should be put in a mental hospital for being such morans!!!! For the wolves, For the wild ones, Jessica

  24. sorry i ment to write… these ‘hunters’ are just idiots with guns shooting anything they can!!!!!

  25. i think that we need to take major action agianst this wolf hunting!!!!

  26. Yeah I agree How is this right? i luv wolves and their beuty but how will they be able to go on like this? people need to relize that wolves have voices to but there not hearing them so i think that we should make sure they do! deep down inside wolves are people to. you wouldnt go around killing people for no reason so why wolves?

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