Action Alert: Montana FWP Plans To Meet With Ranching and Hunting Lobbies To Build Coalition!

We did win a major victory when wolves were relisted on August 5th but you would never know it with the continual whining by the states, ranchers, hunters, The newest and most egregious assault on wolves is Montana FWP’s intention to hold a meeting, tomorrow, Friday, August 20th, at the Red Lion Colonial Hotel in Helena. The purpose?

“Montana officials are planning to meet with ranchers, hunters and other groups about joining forces after a federal judge restored Endangered Species Act protections for wolves.

“Wildlife officials in Montana and Idaho oppose the ruling earlier this month by U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy that blocked the states’ wolf management plans and their fall hunts.

Ranchers and hunters have also blasted the ruling, saying wolves have grown too numerous and are attacking livestock and game.

Ron Aasheim of Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks says state wildlife officials will meet Friday in Helena with stockgrowers, woolgrowers, hunters, farmers and other groups to discuss forming a coalition.

Aasheim says participants will discuss the state’s options and a possible appeal. They meet 10 a.m. at the Red Lion Colonial Hotel in Helena.”

Is this even legal? How can the state of Montana seek to form a coalition with anti-wolf lobbies? This has to be a conflict of interest. Does the state not represent the entire population? What about wolf advocates who don’t hunt or have ranches or farms but want wolves protected? Do we count at all?

Does everyone see what wolves are up against? How the USFWS could push to delist gray wolves in the Northern Rockies, when they are fully aware of the toxic climate that exists in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming against wolves, is egregious beyond measure.

Is anyone responsible for “managing”wolves looking out for them?

Will wolf advocates be at the meeting tomorrow with their video cameras, to document what is being said?  Will there be minutes to this meeting? And who are the other groups Ron Aasheim of Montana FWP is talking about? I don’t see one environmental group mentioned? How desperate do you have to be to pull a stunt like this, barely two weeks after wolves protections were restored?  Should Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks be renamed, Montana For Hunting, Ranching and Woolgrowers?

Think about this for a minute. This is the state of Montana, holding a meeting,with practically no notice ( I could not find an announcement about this meeting anywhere before today, if there is such a link,  please post it on this blog), to build a coalition with groups who are clearly anti-wolf.  Oh and we can’t forget the unnamed “‘other groups”. Who are they, the Safari Club and Cattlemen’s Assoc.?

Wolf advocates, if you can make this meeting under such short notice, I urge you to do so. Wolves can’t speak for themselves, they need our help. The persecution of these magnificent animals knows no bounds. Please take this seriously. In my opinion the state is trying to find a way to circumvent the ESA and hold wolf hunts. I believe there are powerful hunting forces behind this push to dismantle the ESA and strip wolves of their protections. If it wasn’t for the endangered species act, wolves would never have made a comeback at all.

Here’s a video of one of the last wild Mexican gray wolves, captured in Northern Mexico in the 1970’s. Is this what’s  in store for wolves in the Northern Rockies? Just a few wolves left standing?


Aug 19, 2010 12:28 pm US/Mountain

Mont. Seeks Wolf Coalition With Ranchers, Hunters

Posted in: Wolf Wars

Tags: endangered species act, gray wolf, Montana, USFWS, Helena meeting Montana FWP

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  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Stichtag, Nabeki. Nabeki said: Action Alert: Montana FWP PLans To Meet With Ranching and Hunting Lobbies To Build Coalition : [...]

  2. Nabeki,That is exacatly what they want to do.The bill that is being introduced is HP6028.The fear is that if it passes, it will not only mean a severe number of wolves killed but the might exterminate them this time. Who knows.Someone mentioned that it is going to be tagged along with another bill but I am not sure of that.

    • Rita…I don’t think we should take these threats lightly and we should start writing and calling these people now. I posted Rehburg and Baucus info on a previous post but I will put it in the contact list. As a matter of fact everyone needs to call his or her congress person and express their outrage over this bill. I do think they will have a battle royal to change the ESA. Doesn’t mean they won’t try. It sounds like they will do anything to get wolves killed. They are proving why the states can’t manage wolves. Personally I don’t think they have the votes in both houses to pass this. Not everyone is from Montana, Idaho or Texas. I have no idea why a Texan introduced that bill, there are no wolves in Texas.


  3. This is very bad. This sort of coalition is what solicits the killing of endangered species (here it is by simply calling them vermin) and makes it hard for any sort of comeback from environmental groups, particularly if it is given backing by government departments (e.g. Gov. Butch Otter is a member of the Idaho Anti-Wolf Coalition).
    Nabeki, I’m with you on this one, I too smell something rotten with this meeting, something that could endorse, supply or even move to legalise illegal activities. Hunters and ranchers have had their way for FAR TOO LONG and this is the result: a middle finger to ecological knowledge because it doesn’t work out well enough for the killers.

    To those who go: -be careful- and stay safe. It is truly sad that such a thing has to be said.

    • This is getting very ugly John. To think a state would side with anti-wolf forces, it’s unreal to me. You could almost accuse them of whipping up these people. What they should be doing is not encouraging this, that would be the sensible thing to do but sense has gone out the window. I do hope Defenders shows up for this or someone from the Western Wolf Coatlition or any environmental group. Wolves need a voice…otherwise it’s going to be ranting and raving about the need to kill them with no dissenting voices.


  4. Dear Nabeki this is war and this people being now prepared for they attack. Wolf advocates must be there this meeting is illegal we must find a way to stop them.

    • I agree Vasileios, I hope one or two of the environmental groups shows up. I personally don’t think this meeting is even kosher. It’s just piliing on wolves with the power of the state government. Something is not right here.


  5. Well,it wouldn’t hurt to write/email Senator Reid or even Pelosi.

  6. Everything must go through Grijalva in the house, and he won’t let this happen. Nick Rahall, bernard Dicks were all there when the degenerate Steven Pierce tried to strip funding for the Mexican program a few years ago- Pierce was not re-elected. Dems all in all view the ESA in high regard- just as the conservatives view it as an inconvenience to business interests- They suck!

    • I hope you’re right William but the Republicans are going to take back the house in November. That could be worrisome. We all need to be pro-active. This has turned into a war and the hunting and ranching groups have powerful lobbies in Congress. This is getting very, very ugly.


      • Nabeki, maybe you should make a post with those new elk #s that came from the rmef to show everyone that elk are not being wiped out nor are they endangered like some hunters claim. Yes, as we all know, elk are lower in some areas, but that should be expected, Elk populations as a whole are doing good and the link I posted has the elk population #s. Hunting/ranching groups do have powerful lobbies in congress, but I think anyone who counts the animal rights groups and environmental groups out are crazy. They are very powerful and have a lot of money and they have victories under their belt. The animal rights groups and environmental groups that is.

      • Hi Jon,
        The numbers this year are not very different from last year.

        2009: Montana 150,000, Idaho 105,000, Wyoming 95,000.
        2010: Montana 150,000, Idaho 101,000, Wyoming 120,000.

        So it looks like Wyoming gained 25,000 elk. Here’s the link to the 2009 numbers. I just did a post on it and included the link to it.

        Elk Population Reflects Success of RMEF’s First 25 Years


      • Nabeki, the funny thing is when you show these #s, to people, specifically hunters, they will deny them and still claim they are no elk left or they will tell you you are misreading the #s or something like that. The fact is those #s came str8 from the rmef which is a pro hunting organization. I posted these #s on Ralph’s blog and already 2 hunters got on my case. I guess that in their mind, they truly believe wolves are wiping out the elk even though when a pro hunting organization like rmef says different. Even Dave Allen said elk are doing good. I honestly don’t get the whining from those complaining that wolves are the reason for low elk #s in some areas. I mean this should be expected and understandable to even hunters. I mean wolves have to eat, so why do hunters act surprised and whine about it when elk #s are low in some areas due to wolves? It’s like hunters want an overabundance of elk in each area there are elk. This is not natural.

      • Hi Jon,
        I’ve written over and over about elk numbers, they just ignore the it. The RMEF had their 25th anniversary last year and were trumpeting their success recovering elk. Elk numbers were up in twenty three states since the RMEF founding. The RMEF wasn’t talking radical wolf stuff when they put out their 09 press release but the wolf issue blew up soon after their delisting. I think many RMEF members were unhappy with them for painting such a rosy picture of elk recovery, it doesn’t fit in with the “wolves are killing all the elk” agenda. David Allen wrote to this blog last October, I re-posted it a couple of weeks ago. It was clear he was miffed we were using the RMEF numbers that elk are doing just fine. The constant focus on elk is taking away from wolves and their needs. It seems everytime the antis mention wolves you can bet elk or cows won’t be far behind. It’s a red herring issue and keeps us focused on their issue and not ours.

        They know that wolves are not killing all the elk and the state game agencies have admitted many times that wolves kill very few livestock compared to other factors…but they always throw in the caveat “but it’s important to those ranchers who do lose cows”. One year 10,500 calves were lost to winter storms. The Montana winter of 1996 was so severe it wiped out most of the white tail deer, it took over three years just for them to make a comeback and now they are flourishing. That’s how nature works and they know it. If it wasn’t for the wolf and other apex predators there wouldn’t be any elk, they would have over browsed themselves out of existence millenia ago.

        So it’s common knowlege wolves are just one integral part of our ecosystem. They are neither bad or good, they just are. They have to eat and their prey is ungulates for a reason. That’s why predators were put on this earth, to keep ungulates healthy. I love the saying “‘it was the wolf that honed the antelopes nimble foot.”

        But when we talk to the anti-wolf crowd they aren’t listening to this. They have focused on wolves as scapegoats for all the problems in their lives, plus there is plenty of peer pressure. It’s cool in hunting circles to hate wolves. The politicians are just pandering to their base, they would rather talk about anything else then the terrible economy.

        So, it’s my feeling they have the numbers, they know elk are doing fine in most areas and if they are worried about isolated declines then state game agencies shouldn’t be selling as many tags. But oh no, hunters will be allowed to kill elk but wolves will have to die for any perceived dips. They are hypocrites.


      • Look at Wyoming, they are probably the most anti wolf state out of the 3 if that’s possible and they have more elk than in 2009. So why are hunters complaining that wolves are wiping out the elk? I think it simply comes down to the elk are moving. Hunters who dislike wolves will use wolves as scapegoats and blame them for wiping out elk when it is possible that the elk just simply moved. They think the worst of the wolf and if they don’t see elk, they purposely blame the wolf without any thought. The fact is that the numbers from rmef prove that overall, elk are doing good. They are not being wiped out nor arr they becoming endangered due to wolves. These #s prove that.

  7. This is happening for several reasons. First, make no mistake this agency wants tom have a hunt. Second, this State agency want to appear as proactive in front of it membership. Thats right …I said membership. I feel this agency has stepped over the line and is no longer a government agency. It a club or organization of like minded individuals. Third, They have become so desperate they will stoop to any level! But make no mistake…”This is War”!

  8. Luckily the census is down on my nsg floor, so I have been calling senators all morning. The most humorous was when I called Bourasso in Wy. I prefaced the call by saying “Your a doctor and you don’t want children to have health coverage, so I guess your view of wildlife is just as bad” The poor girl had no clue for a response after my 5 minute assault! I told her that Sen Bourasso and I wouldn’t agree on the weather! They want a fight- I’m ready! Grijalva is great- and he is part of the nat resources committee- the most important with these type of issues. He has common sense and reason, and a true environmental advocate. I remember my conversation with Mike Jimenez from Wyoming, who told me the story of how he went to retrieve Limpy after he was caught in the snare, He was an iconic wolf who had the fearless spirit that makes us want to protect these animals

    • Thank god for Raul Grijalva. I hope the 7th District of AZ realizes how lucky they are. My rep in Congress is Darrell Isa, 49th District of CA and he has never offered any support in any way regarding wildlife or animal rights, despite the many calls and emails I know he receives.

    • William, I spoke with Raul Grijalva’s spokesperson, he’s still in Arizona, since Congress isn’t back in session until Sept. 13. I’m encouraged by what I was told and I know Rep. Grijalva would fight any changes to the ESA. 6028 will not get the votes it needs to pass in the house with this congress BUT Republicans are going to take back the House in November and then we might have to worry. Still it was the Obama admin that delisted the wolf and started this mess. Obama has not weighed in on the issue at all, even though numerous petitions, letters and pleas have been directed at him. I don’t think he cares one whit what happens to wolves. He’s a delegator and has given it all over to the rancher Salazar. So not only has a Democrat President caused the entire wolf mess but he’s also helping to destroy our wild horses. Some accomplishments..this isn’t the change people were looking for. He is clueless.


  9. People should call the USFWS and ask who they work for, and enforce the importance of this agency enforcing the ESA not placate the special interest hunters and livestock agencies in Idaho like this Thorson idiot just did. Read them the riot act! They work for the ANIMALS!My mistrust for them goes way back when they were in charge of the killing, something they did very well. This is about Wyoming and their longhistory of treating animals like shit!

    • William…USFWS, namely Ed Bangs seems to be going right along with this nonsense. What state agency forms a coalition with select “stakeholders”? I was sent the sunshine laws that apply to Montana and it doesn’t sound legal to me at all. Firstly did they give any public notice of this meeting? I read about it the day before it happened? Also they formed a coalition with these “select stakeholders” within hours. Where is the public comment period that’s required for decision making? The whole thing smells to high heaven but I guess they are not too worried since they have the governor, two senators and one rep on their side. The people of Montana have been left out of this totally, except for the “select stakeholders”. The media is covering this like it’s business as usual. Outrageous. We have to fight back and let them know this is just not going to fly. I find it ironic in the extreme that this is the state who says they are responsible stewards to “”manage (kill)” wolves, when it’s plan to see they have no regard for wolves whatsoever. This is what it has come to.



      • This is nothing more than lobbying.

      • Jon, it’s worse then lobbying. The meeting in Helena was pandering to one segment of the population in the state of Montana. This is the agency that wants to “manage” wolves without predjudice? Yet all they are doing is siding with people that hate the wolf. What does that tell you?


  10. Nabeki, I can’t make it to the meeting (live in cali) but I can post this on my FB and have a call to action. Is it call your lawmakers to vote no on HP6028?
    I think we ought to think of a Boycott too. Lot of these are ranchers, who deal with big meat companies. we can find out who they are and call for a boycott on beef from them!
    See Target is already reeling from the boycott against them. What do you think? Let me know I will post on the FB.

    • Great ideas crystalwolf. We have to encourage people to write their Senators and Congressman. I don’t think anything will happen with 6028 before the end of the year but when the Reps. take back the house in November it will be a different Congress, then we may have to worry. We need to inform people now of what’s going on. It looks like this will be a grass roots effort. Have any of the environmental groups said anything about this?


      • Nabeki, I believe most of these senators and congressmen are in the hunter/rancher’s pockets. Seems most of them stick up for hunters/ranchers.

      • Jon had a post on another site and he would be a good person to ask. He might have poted it here but I’ve been busy this morning.Jon is fighting,more or less,with some people over there on Ralph’s site with the usual people.Gline used to post comments on there defending wolves some time ago ,but the hunters on the post come after you and after that everyone,pro wolf, seems to disapear from the blog. I just gine is doing okay. I give jon thanks for yhis. perseverance.They are relentless and they’re not going to change.I go there only to see what is going on.I wouldn’t be surprised if they don’t visist this site,but I do not know for sure.

      • Rita…I find it tiring to continually have to defend wolves against hunters. That’s why I created a safe haven for wolf advocates here. For an analogy, I used to belong to a discussion board on another topic. The people there just loved to argue about anything, it didn’t matter what the topic. That’s the situation for some of the people on Ralph’s blog, they just argue and argue over the same things over and over, neither sides changing their minds. I would rather spend my energy promoting wolves without having to contantly defend them. I like Ralph’s blog for the info. because he posts on a wide variety of environmental issues. But not interested in arguing the same points over and over with hunters, it’s an exercise in futility.


      • Hi rita, I don’t think I posted the article about the wolf coalition among hunters, ranchers and Montana fwp oficials, someone else did, but yeah, some pro wolf supporters have left Ralph’s blog because of the attacks from the so called hunters. William used to post there and got sick of it I guess. Arguing with the hunters and all and Nabeki stopped posting from there too after hunters came after her. Most of the hunters I have come across are more or less the same with their attitude against wolves.

  11. I am sicked beyond words at the constant assault on wildlife and agree it is far beyond the time that we demand the USFWS do their job and PROTECT wildlife. They DO NOT work for the hunters and the Cattlemen’s Association, though by their actions, you certainly would think they did. I am certain there is money exchanged under the table so to speak, and if not money, nice dinners, gifts, etc. And I hate to sound like a broken record, but Ken Salazar is the real problem here. As long as we have a Secretary of the Interior in bed with Oil and Ranchers, this is what we can expect.

    Is the Doug Smith you referred to a few days ago the Doug Smith with the Yellowstone Wolf Project? I was looking at the WolfWatcher site/blog and was rather impressed with Dave Hornoff. I think maybe if we contacted maybe Dave and Mike Wagner of Heart of the Wolf and banded together so to speak, that would be a good way to become better organized and find someone who knows the wolves and how necessary as apex predators they are to take our story to Washington so to speak.

    I know Facebook and Twitter can be a real asset but somehow we have got to all band together to save our wolves. It is amazing when you really start research all the many website and blogs by wolf advocates there are.

    Nabeki, I hope your heart has begun to heal a little in the recent loss of your beloved pet.

  12. Goes to show you that “we’re all created equal”, BUT, some of us are more equal than others…..Like people that grow cows and sheep or belong to the “hook and bullet” so called sportsman’s organizations.
    Wildlife, according to The Public Trust Doctrine, belongs to ALL people of the State…NOT special interest groups. It is to be managed based on SCIENCE and not on how these special interest groups want it managed.
    I’m sick of this back-room politics. Tester and Baucus are pros at this.
    I’d bet we have the National Wildlife Federation and The Montana Wildlife Federation involved in this also. These slime-balls are the surrogate voices for the politicians who don’t want to deal with you and I.

  13. Rowan Gould is the acting dir of the USFWS call his office at 2022084717 and demand that MRS THORSON resign from her job. She is an idiot and I’m sure the IDAHO wildlife Commission can use her services, she is certainly not working on behalf of the animals she is suppose to protect!

  14. Nabeki- just because the pedophile dick morris and shitstain sean Hannity say the repubs will take back the house doesn’t mean that will happen. I think people are overreacting- Let me ask you a few questions- do you think the average person wants to have to wk until 70 before they can collect soc sec? Do you think all these budget hawks that want the deficit handled want the richest 2% to have their tax cut? Republicans have absolutely nothing to run on- what that they will repeal the HC bill and financial reform bill-Please! People are overreacting! If by chance the repubs take back the house nothing will pass the senate just like what is happening now

    • William,
      I’m not saying the Republicans will take back the house, I’m just saying it’s a very strong possiblity. Obama is not popular and personally I have not cared for him at all after he picked the rancher, Salazar, to run the Interior. Not only did Salazar delist wolves and start this firestorm but he is helping to destroy our wild horses. I’m an independant, I have no love for either political party. It’s getting harder and harder to vote for someone because the two parties are starting to look similar in so many ways. Who would ever have thought a Democrat president would delist wolves? But there it is.


      • I share the same feelings as you about both parties Nabeki. The guy Chet Edwards from Texas is the one that is trying to get legislation passed to keep wolves off the esl. He is a democrat. God help us all if Palin runs for president in 2012 and wins. We know where she stands on wolves.

      • Jon- Talking about Sara Palin. Just envision caribou barbie in an unscripted debate with Barack Obama. I would pay to see it. Do you really think she has either the intelligence or the political knowledge after hiding behind her facebook and twitter accounts? Lets be real- the repubs have no one , so it is possible she could win the repub nomination- but the general? Women hate this woman- she is a pariah who wouldn’t win!

      • Hi William, I used to be a democrat, but I changed to independent simply because I don’t like either party, but I prefer dems over republicans if I had to pick between the two. The things I dislike about republicans is they blame ALL of the problems on the dems when the republicans themselves are no bargain. They also believe that when a republican becomes president, all of the united states problems are going to go away and I just don’t buy that. We have had republican presidents in the past and they sucked just as badly. I also do not like republicans/conservatives because they seem to always be against wildlife and advocate killing of predators. ofcourse, they love their deer, elk, and moose simply because they eat them. george W bush brought us into a war we should have never been involved in and as a result, many american soldiers died. Iraq is not any better a place it was before we invaded. yes, no Saddam, but there are still daily killings and bombings. We should have stayed out of Iraq and let them handle their own problems. I am just thinking about now what is going to happen to wildlife if we get another anti-wildlife republican conservative president. People like Palin, bachmann from MN, ann coulter, these people are like a cancer on our society imo.

      • Jon…that’s what makes Obama’s stand on wolves and wild horses so maddening. He’s lost any chance to ever get my vote. How pathetic is it that a democrat created this mess? I thought the only thing that separated the two parties was the dems were good on the environment. When Obama continued Bush’s policy against wolves I was stunned and I think the rest of the environmental community was as well. I’m an Independant like you. I don’t like either party now. I used to lean to the dems because I thought they were better on the enviro but no more. Now I don’t feel like there are any choices. The best we can hope for is total gridlock in Congress so they can’t do anymore damage. Oh and Sarah Palin couldn’t debate her way out of paper bag. Her SHRILL annoying voice is like listening to chalk drag across a blackboard. Let her keep tweeting and blabbing on FB…where she can’t do any damage. The thought of her as President makes my head spin around backwards.


      • Some dems are now following the republicans on wildlife issues. As I told you the other day Nabeki and I am sure you are aware of some senator from Tx Chet Edwards is trying to introduce legislation of some kind that prevents wolves from being put on the esl. I always thought dems are wildlife’s friends, specifically predators, but I guess things are changing and not for the better.

  15. And one other thing. I find it humorous all this talk from mainly conservatives that are constitutional scholars upholding the principles of the founding fathers until they disagree with a ruling! Then it’s we will change the 14th amendment! Or we will change the ESA! People including Bush have tried with very limited success- all he managed to do was strip some of the oversight involved- which were quickly reversed once Obama came into office!

    • They only bring up the constitution William when it’s convenient. The ranchers don’t mind the government handing them subsidies, which is corporate welfare. I know ranchers that are paid not to grow anything on their land. It goes on and on. The one job the government should be doing, protecting our wildplaces and native wildlife, they are falling down on the job. Some of the national parks are screaming for wolves because elk and other ungulates are doing so much damage. Yet the USFWS is too busy worrying about wolf politics, especially here in the Northern Rockies to address these issues.


    • William, I believe the sci tried to change the esa so they could hunt polar bears. I am sure this has been done for other animals as well. Bush sr. and bush jr tried to get some law changed so they could hunt african lions for trophies. Disgusting these people are.

  16. “Just because you approve of a wolf hunt* does not mean you are anti-wolf”
    A new line. Actually this line is rather old but coming from sport and trophy hunters, some who repeatedly whine about elk, it makes it oh so hard to believe.

    [*or hunt wolves]

  17. Believe it or not one of my favorite presidents is Richard Nixon. Speaking in terms of the environment and specifically the idea of wildlife protection he was at the forefront of the early 1970s environmentalism. Within 2 years Ford amended the poisoning of wildlife with the help of our old friend the canned hunter dick Cheney from Wyoming. The ESA will always be protected, the republicans had both houses of congress and bush in the wh until 2006, and they knew they had better leave it alone. Pombo in CA lost his election after environmental groups went into his districts to shed the light on his efforts to change the ESA. You can tell alot about a state by the way they manage their wildlife. Where I am you have the state of Maine wcich is the equivalent of the western redneck hillbilly Idaho Utah style mgmt. Maine is the only state in the U.S where bears are hounded, baited and trapped all for sport. They are a disgrace, similar to Idaho who is attempting to unleash a series of unethical no fair chase regs on the wolves- they suck as well! I think butch’s black hat is a few sizes too small and is cutting off circulation to his brain.

  18. I have six cats including 3 homeless cats I rescued from the streets. This fatso from Scotland or whereever he is from is pathetic- look at him- he has no friends, no interest from girls, so he takes his sadism out on cats. Talk about a pussy coward- there you go!

    • William….there is a special place in hell for people that torture animals.


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