Apparently its open season on bull bison in Island Park, Idaho. Another bull, who migrated from Yellowstone, has been shot and killed there.
Published as part of the July 26, 2012 edition.
ISLAND PARK — A second bull bison was shot to death on Henry’s Lake Flat today (Sat. July 28). The first was killed on Thursday.
Both bulls were wandering around ranch land where cattle are grazing, but the bull killed today was first spotted near Mack’s Inn.
On Thursday, Yellowstone National Park and the Montana Department of Agriculture were contacted with requests to move the bison, but both agencies refused to help so the Idaho Department of Agriculture was called.
On Friday, Bill Barton, State Veterinarian, Division of Animal Industries, Idaho Department of Agriculture, issued this statement about Idaho’s bison policy: “The Idaho State Department of Agriculture is responsible for administering Title 25 Chapter 6 of Idaho Code. As stated in that statute, a significant potential exists for the spread of contagious disease to persons, livestock and other animals in Idaho, in particular, the spread of brucellosis to livestock, elk, moose and other susceptible animals from bison emigrating into Idaho from Yellowstone National Park and its environs. The statute requires that wild bison be removed from the state by one of two options: the live bison may be physically removed or hazed from within the state or, if removal/hazing is not feasible, the bison may be destroyed. To prevent potential property damage and mitigate public safety risks, this bison was humanely destroyed.”
It does not matter to Idaho that no bull bison has ever transmitted brucellosis to domestic livestock. Brucellosis is a disease that can cause livestock to abort their claves until they develop tolerance for the brucella organism. The organism is most active in the afterbirth of a bison calf for less than 48 hours after the birth. Bison births occur well before domestic cattle are brought to greater Yellowstone for summer grazing.
Elk have transmitted brucellosis to livestock, but since elk hunting is a major industry in Idaho and other Western states, the brucellosis issue is virtually ignored.
So let me get this straight, bison have to die because of a threat of transmitting brucellosis to cattle, when there is not one documented incident of this happening, yet elk have transmitted the disease to cattle but are allowed to roam freely among them, apparently without any concern. Yep makes perfect sense to me.
I also love the fact that Yellowstone National Park and the Montana Department of Agriculture were notified to help move the bison and both declined. Way to go Yellowstone and Montana.
The brucellosis scare has been going on long enough. We all know what’s going on here. It’s not about brucellosis, it’s about competition for grazing land. Ranchers don’t want bison competing with their precious cattle for grass so the brucellosis card is used to kill bison when this is basically a red herring. The proof of this is elk are known carriers of the disease and HAVE transmitted it to cattle.
The livestock industry needs to own up to this farce. Is there no end to the number of wildlife who must be sacrificed on the altar of the sacred cow?
Photo: Courtesy First People
Posted in: Bison
Tags: Island Park_Idaho, second bison killed, Yellowstone bison