Wolf Hysteria And Moral Panics

Wolf Paranoia:

A typical wolf about to take your children and eat your job

April 6, 2012

It’s time to repost this powerful analysis of wolf persecution and scapegoating by rationalwiki.com.

===

October 9, 2o11

I was doing research into the origins of wolf persecution and came across an excellent entry by Rational Wiki on the subject of wolf hysteria.  It outlines the major tenets of wolf persecution, describing how common sense and measured thinking are thrown out the window by those who seek to demonize wolves and blame them for all the world’s ills.

I’m presenting the Rational Wiki entry just as its written, it explains the roots of wolf  hysteria and how it’s used to persecute and scapegoat the wolf.

===

From RationalWiki.com

Wolf hysteria

(also known as wolf persecution, or rarely, lupophobia) is the widespread public hatred of wolves, incorporating both their enduring role as folk devils, and societal attitudes favouring policies of active persecution of wolves, and opposition and resistance to policies aiming to protect existing wild populations, or reintroduce the species into former ranges where it has become extinct relatively recently.

The phenomenon shares much in common with moral panics,  including the use of scaremongering, unverifiable anecdotesdemonisation, exaggeration, moral highroading etc., to the extent the phenomenon could be considered a moral panic in and of itself, though it is not commonly referred to as such.

Hot-button issues

Fierce, and often aggressively negative perceptions of wolves have a long history in western (and many other) cultures. However, the main issues triggering a renewed outpouring of hysteria often stems from any proposal (real or simply made up) from a few major “hot button” issues:

Predation of livestock

Attempts to introduce/extend protections for wolves

Attempts to re-introduce wolves to areas where they had become locally extinct

===

Manning Moral Barricades

The most shrill cries attesting to the apparently limitless evils of the wolf arise, unsurprisingly, from the livestock industry. It claims that predation of livestock by wolves is rampant, and that seeing the unending bloodbath caused by these “specialists in carnage” causes those who raise animals to slaughter en-masse for meat, to be emotionally distraught by, well, the killing of animals for meat.

In the USA an equally unsurprising alliance with hunting and game interest, numerous front organisations and astroturf operations has been established, including the Abundant Wildlife Society of North America (AWSNA) and the National Animal Interest Alliance (NAIA)[1]. They have been aided and abetted by the wider so-called “conservative conservationist” movement (itself usually astroturf or greenwashing for forestry, hunting and agriculture interests), such as Conservation Force, but perhaps best illustrated by Mike Dubrasich and his Western Institute for Study of the Environment (WISE) / SOSForests,who couches his arguments in terms of concern for the environment, though sometimes veers into extreme right-wing conspiracy theories about the federal government, in alliance with “eco-facists” deliberately introducing wolves (aka “blood-thirsty predators”)[2] to the mid-west (along with forest fires and various other things).

The arguments

Wolves cause significant losses to livestock producers

A common refrain is that attacks (predation) on livestock by wolves is a significant, or even one of the main, losses incurred by livestock producers.

In the USA emphasis is placed primarily on the financial side, and also often emphasises that the inclusion of the wolf within the Endangered Species Act violates “property rights” and “constitutional freedoms”. The “emotional trauma” suffered by livestock producers as a result of predation is also frequently mentioned.

“It may destroy our livelihood and our major lifestyle is in jeopardy.”

“Judging from their rapidly expanding populations across the West, it is obvious that wolf populations are healthy. Our concern is whether we’ll be able to say the same thing about the West’s ranchers in years to come.[4]“

Firstly, though these organisations are ready to give the numbers of livestock affected by predation, these are never given as percentages, or even stated in relation to total herd numbers. In most states the losses of livestock due to wolf predation was <1%. In the state of Wyoming, which lies entirely within the Yellowstone re-introduction area the number varied depending on year between 0.9% and 2% in the period 2000-2005, averaging under 1% over the period. This compares with 33.7% to 48.3% over the same period for losses due to coyotes, 4.1% to 10.9% due to eagles, and from 11.2% to 20.7% due to weather. Indeed, poison, often left by livestock producers to kill wolves and other predators, was often responsible for a greater proportion of losses than those due to wolf predation.[5]

Emotional trauma is of course impossible to either prove or disprove, but it is important to remember that livestock is ultimately reared for slaughter, either to directly obtain the primary products (meat and hides) or as means of profitably disposing of “spent” dairy or wool herds/flocks. Thus one would expect anyone working in the livestock industry to deal with the death and processing of animals into food and other end-products as part of the day to day running of their business. It is highly unlikely that any individual emotionally disturbed by the slaughter of animals for meat or other products would find livestock work tolerable as a long time career.

The inclusion of wolves in the ESA provides a mechanism for financial compensation to be paid for damages caused by wolves in partnership with the Wolf Compensation Trust,[6] and in the case of wolves found in the act of attacking livestock or other domesticated animals within private property, it is permissible for the owner to take measures necessary to protect them. Therefore it is hard to see how such an act can be a “violation” of rights.

Wolves decimate game herds

“All wolves must be eliminated to restore our big game herds.[7]“

The Canadian wolves have decimated our elk, mule deer and moose populations to lows not seen since the ’60s.[8]

There has been considerable hysteria over the impact of wolf populations on herds of elk. However the National Park Service studies indicate that wolf reintroduction to the park, a major reserve for elk herds, would have negligible affect on hunting activities, and that the effect of wolf predation on elk populations would not, in and of itself, have an impact sufficient to be the decisive factor in elk population management.[9]

Although the reasons behind fluctuating wild animal populations are complex, Drs. Doug Smith, Daniel Stahler and John Vucetich conducted a joint National Park Service-MTU study into elk population at Yellowstone. Their findings found that:[10]
Elk population remained stable from the re-introduction of wolves in 1995 through to 2000, at around 17,000

In the period 2000-2004 the population dropped 50% to 8,334. During this period the Yellowstone area experienced drought conditions, and increased hunting of Elk by humans.

Though hunting permits did not allow for a kill level equivalent to the total population drop, the researchers concluded that hunting, led to a “super-additive” effect, whereby a 1% direct loss rate due to hunting was magnified to significant degree due to knock-on effects, which were only exacerbated by drought conditions.[10] Although wolf predation was acknowledged to exist, it’s effect on the large population drops seen was regarded as a minor, largely insignificant factor:

“Our analysis indicates that there is greater justification for believing that the harvest rate and severe climate, together, account for at least much of the decline[10]“

Wolves attack humans all the time

Whilst it is known that wolf attacks on humans do occur, those engaged in wolf hysteria deliberately exaggerate the risk out of all proportion to implant the idea in their audience that all wolves routinely kill and eat humans.

“Wolves are blood-thirsty predators that attack and kill pets, livestock, children, and adults.[11]“

“Around here we shoot blood-thirsty predators before they kill our horses, cattle, sheep, or children.[11"

"258 Congressional Members Support Funding for Mexican Wolves Stalking Children and Wolves Terrorizing Rural Citizens[12]“

The facts in no way bear out such hysteria. Those involved in wolf hysteria often recount reports from the 18th and 19th centuries recanting real or imagined wolf attacks in Europe and Asia. Although European wolf subspecies are less wary of humans, and are able to live near higher-density human populations than their North American cousins there are no reports of attacks.

[13] As the map clearly shows, no wolf subspecies present on the Eurasian landmass is present on the North American landmass.

Statistics compiled by Norwegian Institute for Nature Research (NINA) on global wild (not captive) wolf attacks show that in the period 1950-2000, (50 years) there were only 13 confirmed cases of wolf attacks on humans in North America, none of which were fatal.[14].

In the United States alone (not the whole of North America), approximately 1 million reported instances of domestic dogs biting humans per year, with an average of 16 to 18 fatal attacks per annum.

(According to Wikimedia Commons,  It is estimated that two percent of the US population, 4.7 million people, are bitten (by dogs) each year.[3] In the 1980s and 1990s the US averaged 17 fatalities per year, while in the 2000s this has increased to 26.[4] 77% of dog bites are from the pet of family or friends, and 50% of attacks occur on the dog owner’s property.[4])

===

Wolves spread disease

Groups and politicians opposed to wolf conservation often use the claim that wolves spread diseases to livestock and game populations. [15] Whilst wolf populations, like that of any wild animal, carry disease, as apex predators they are more often than not a “dead end” for transmission of disease, and are of little concern when it comes to disease management in most livestock and game populations.[15]

The most serious diseases affecting wolf populations are those which also affect domestic canines, parvo, mange and intestinal worms.[16]In all cases, transmission of the disease is driven infinitely more by domestic dogs than wolves, and it is believed that in most cases these diseases have been introduced to the wolf population by domestic dogs.  A notable exception is the presence of mange in North American wolf populations in the Rocky mountains. This population was deliberately infected by government veterinarians in 1909 as an attempt to “exterminate” the wolf population, spread to coyotes and other mammals, and eventually re-infected wolves upon their reintroduction to the area.

===

A common refrain is that the only effective solution to any or all of the above is to drastically reduce the population of wolves. This inevitably entails lethal intervention on the part of humans. Such actions are proposed by many livestock producers as the panacea to all ills, and is, unsurprisingly, encouraged and guided by the hunting, trapping and fur lobby organisations, which naturally present themselves as the only viable way of going about any such lethal solution. Alas, many hunting methods are exceedingly inhumane, with methods such as leg traps being commonplace in North America, though are banned in the EU due to concerns over its inhumane nature.[19]

Other excessively cruel/inhumane methods used include hunting wolves using specially trained flocks of eagles, a method historically and currently used in Central Asia,[20] and recommended in proposals to open up the hunting of wolves in the lower 48 states of the US.[21]

===

See Footnotes

http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Wolf_hysteria

===

Meet The Wolf….Fact Not Fiction

http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com/2010/11/06/meet-the-wolffacts-not-fiction/

===

Tracking science: Biologist’s findings show forest diversity, health influenced by wolves

Written and photographed by MICHAEL JAMISON of the Missoulian | Posted: Sunday, October 25, 2009 9:00 am

POLEBRIDGE – A clinging mist quieted the morning meadow, the icy hem of its robes brushing silent against autumn’s crackling knee-high grass.

In the darkest shadows, the cold crunch of snow remained, criss-crossed with wolf tracks, bear tracks, elk and deer tracks. Scat and bone and hair and hide. These were the morning news reports written in muddied prints, each with a thin film of ice.

Cristina Eisenberg scanned the headlines, then waded into the meadow to read the particulars.

“It’s all here,” the researcher said. “You just have to know the language.”

To the west, ranging grasslands rose gently to an aspen knoll, the trees all tall white ghosts trembling in the dull gloom of fog. A low row of leafy 10-footers skirted the meadow, backed by a towering canopy now a week or more past fall’s golden height.

There were small young trees, and tall old trees, but no middle-aged aspens and that, combined with the frozen tracks, told Eisenberg something very important about this place.

Until about 1920, wolves patrolled these meadows, which have long been an important wintering ground for elk. Then humans hunted the predators into extinction here, and for 60 years or more the elk grazed in peace. By the mid-1980s, however, wolves were recolonizing the landscape, straying south from Canada to reclaim this western fringe of Glacier National Park.

The 100-year-old aspens grew up with wolves. So did the 20-year-olds. There are no middle-agers, Eisenberg said, because without wolves to run the elk, all the young aspen sprouts were browsed to death.

“It is,” she said, “clear and profound. The wolves leave an indelible mark on the entire ecosystem.”

READ MORE: http://missoulian.com/lifestyles/territory/article_3ec9fc54-c01f-11de-bf16-001cc4c002e0.html

Photo: Courtesy Rational Wiki

Posted in: Wolf  Wars, Wolf Myths

Tags: Wolf hysteria, moral panics, scaremongering, demonization of wolves, livestock industry, hunting lobbies

A Round of Applause…

The endless whining and demonizing of wolves is so mind numbing  it could actually rival the drug Ambien as an effective sleep aid. The same talking points are repeated over and over ad nauseam. That’s why it was so refreshing to read reporter Nick Geovck’s piece in the Mt.Standard. A round of applause to him for having the courage and conviction to speak out about this modern-day witch hunt, directed at wolves and other predators.

He drives his point home by quoting from Aldo Leopold’s famous writing, Thinking Like a Mountain, from a Sand County Almanac. Leopold, who was once a wolf hunter himself, had an epiphany:

“Leopold realizes that killing a predator wolf carries serious implications for the rest of the ecosystem.”

Please take the time to thank Nick Ge0vck by leaving a comment under his excellent article.

===

Hatred of predators reaches ridiculous fervor

In the Hunt by Nick Geovck |

Posted: Thursday, January 26, 2012 12:15 am

“Conserva-tion is a state of harmony between men and land. By land is meant all of the things on, over, or in the earth. Harmony with land is like harmony with a friend; you cannot cherish his right hand and chop off his left. That is to say, you cannot love game and hate predators.”

- Aldo Leopold

Let’s kill every wolf in Montana.

Sounds like a popular idea these days among hunters.

While we’re at it, let’s kill every grizzly bear, every black bear and every mountain lion. Throw in golden eagles, bald eagles, rattlesnakes and coyotes.

We’d be left with a hunter’s paradise – a state teeming with game animals and hunting opportunity, right?

That’s the sentiment I heard recently at a meeting on the hunting season setting proposals in Butte, where an oft-angry group of sportsmen called for large-scale killing of predators to increase the number of deer, elk and other game species. The suggestions ranged from having government trappers shoot wolves from helicopters to creating a season on eagles so they don’t kill mountain goats.

Of course Butte sportsmen aren’t alone. Over the past few years anger has been building blaming predators – and in particular wolves – for lower game herds and for less hunting opportunity. Wolf haters throw around words like “annihilation” and “devastation” when it comes to Montana’s deer and elk herds. And even some respected conservation groups have gotten in on the wolf bashing through public statements decrying the effects of predators.

What state are these people living in?

Here are a few facts about Montana’s wildlife populations and hunting over the past two decades, covering the period during which the much-maligned western gray wolf has been on the landscape.

In 1992, three years before wolves were reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park and central Idaho, the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks official estimate of the elk herd was 89,000 elk in Montana. Today we have a statewide estimate of 150,000 elk.

In 2003, the state Legislature passed a bill that required FWP biologists bring elk numbers down to the targeted objective populations laid out in the statewide elk plan. They were responding to complaints from ranchers about too many elk on their private land.

Ironically, some of the same lawmakers who supported that bill are among the most vocal wolf bashers. That hypocrisy begs the question: are there too many elk or too many wolves in Montana?

Anyway, the Legislature in recent years has given FWP several tools to kill more elk, including giving hunters the chance to kill two elk per year.

And since then, Montana has on three occasions extended the general elk season to give hunters two additional weeks to kill elk in years when the harvest was slow.

Second elk tags, extended seasons and liberal regulations allowing more cow elk hunting: where’s the loss of hunting opportunity?

In truth, elk hunters have had more opportunity than in decades and now we’ve seen the effects of that.

Over the past couple years we’ve brought elk back down closer to the target populations or in some cases dropped it below those objective numbers. Accordingly, FWP biologists have gone from liberal to more conservative seasons, allowing fewer cow elk to be killed in many areas and reducing the second tags.

It proves that two-legged predators with high-powered rifles can be extremely effective at killing elk.

Read more: http://mtstandard.com/news/local/hatred-of-predators-reaches-ridiculous-fervor/article_3e418c46-47ba-11e1-b87a-0019bb2963f4.html#ixzz1kelv40FJ

===

Photo: Courtesy goukaboutdotcom

Posted in: Wolf Wars

Tags: wolf persecution, wolf hysteria, Mt. Standard, Nick Gevock ,  war on predators

Wolf Hysteria and Moral Panic

Wolf Paranoia: A typical wolf about to take your children and eat your job

I was doing research into the origins of wolf persecution and came across an excellent entry by Rational Wiki on the subject of wolf hysteria.  It outlines the major tenets of wolf persecution, describing how common sense and measured thinking are thrown out the window by those who seek to demonize wolves and blame them for all the world’s ills.

I’m presenting the Rational Wiki entry just as its written, it explains the roots of wolf  hysteria and how it’s used to persecute and scapegoat the wolf.

===

From RationalWiki.com

Wolf hysteria

(also known as wolf persecution, or rarely, lupophobia) is the widespread public hatred of wolves, incorporating both their enduring role as folk devils, and societal attitudes favouring policies of active persecution of wolves, and opposition and resistance to policies aiming to protect existing wild populations, or reintroduce the species into former ranges where it has become extinct relatively recently. The phenomenon shares much in common with moral panics, including the use of scaremongering, unverifiable anecdotes, demonisation, exaggeration, moral highroading etc., to the extent the phenomenon could be considered a moral panic in and of itself, though it is not commonly referred to as such.

Hot-button issues

Fierce, and often aggressively negative perceptions of wolves have a long history in western (and many other) cultures. However, the main issues triggering a renewed outpouring of hysteria often stems from any proposal (real or simply made up) from a few major “hot button” issues:

Predation of livestock

Attempts to introduce/extend protections for wolves

Attempts to re-introduce wolves to areas where they had become locally extinct

===

Manning Moral Barricades

The most shrill cries attesting to the apparently limitless evils of the wolf arise, unsurprisingly, from the livestock industry. It claims that predation of livestock by wolves is rampant, and that seeing the unending bloodbath caused by these “specialists in carnage” causes those who raise animals to slaughter en-masse for meat, to be emotionally distraught by, well, the killing of animals for meat.

In the USA an equally unsurprising alliance with hunting and game interest, numerous front organisations and astroturf operations has been established, including the Abundant Wildlife Society of North America (AWSNA) and the National Animal Interest Alliance (NAIA)[1]. They have been aided and abetted by the wider so-called “conservative conservationist” movement (itself usually astroturf or greenwashing for forestry, hunting and agriculture interests), such as Conservation Force, but perhaps best illustrated by Mike Dubrasich and his Western Institute for Study of the Environment (WISE) / SOSForests,who couches his arguments in terms of concern for the environment, though sometimes veers into extreme right-wing conspiracy theories about the federal government, in alliance with “eco-facists” deliberately introducing wolves (aka “blood-thirsty predators”)[2] to the mid-west (along with forest fires and various other things).

The arguments

Wolves cause significant losses to livestock producers

A common refrain is that attacks (predation) on livestock by wolves is a significant, or even one of the main, losses incurred by livestock producers.

In the USA emphasis is placed primarily on the financial side, and also often emphasises that the inclusion of the wolf within the Endangered Species Act violates “property rights” and “constitutional freedoms”. The “emotional trauma” suffered by livestock producers as a result of predation is also frequently mentioned.

“It may destroy our livelihood and our major lifestyle is in jeopardy.”

“Judging from their rapidly expanding populations across the West, it is obvious that wolf populations are healthy. Our concern is whether we’ll be able to say the same thing about the West’s ranchers in years to come.[4]“

Firstly, though these organisations are ready to give the numbers of livestock affected by predation, these are never given as percentages, or even stated in relation to total herd numbers. In most states the losses of livestock due to wolf predation was <1%. In the state of Wyoming, which lies entirely within the Yellowstone re-introduction area the number varied depending on year between 0.9% and 2% in the period 2000-2005, averaging under 1% over the period. This compares with 33.7% to 48.3% over the same period for losses due to coyotes, 4.1% to 10.9% due to eagles, and from 11.2% to 20.7% due to weather. Indeed, poison, often left by livestock producers to kill wolves and other predators, was often responsible for a greater proportion of losses than those due to wolf predation.[5]

Emotional trauma is of course impossible to either prove or disprove, but it is important to remember that livestock is ultimately reared for slaughter, either to directly obtain the primary products (meat and hides) or as means of profitably disposing of “spent” dairy or wool herds/flocks. Thus one would expect anyone working in the livestock industry to deal with the death and processing of animals into food and other end-products as part of the day to day running of their business. It is highly unlikely that any individual emotionally disturbed by the slaughter of animals for meat or other products would find livestock work tolerable as a long time career.

The inclusion of wolves in the ESA provides a mechanism for financial compensation to be paid for damages caused by wolves in partnership with the Wolf Compensation Trust,[6] and in the case of wolves found in the act of attacking livestock or other domesticated animals within private property, it is permissible for the owner to take measures necessary to protect them. Therefore it is hard to see how such an act can be a “violation” of rights.

Wolves decimate game herds

“All wolves must be eliminated to restore our big game herds.[7]“

The Canadian wolves have decimated our elk, mule deer and moose populations to lows not seen since the ’60s.[8]


There has been considerable hysteria over the impact of wolf populations on herds of elk. However the National Park Service studies indicate that wolf reintroduction to the park, a major reserve for elk herds, would have negligible affect on hunting activities, and that the effect of wolf predation on elk populations would not, in and of itself, have an impact sufficient to be the decisive factor in elk population management.[9]

Although the reasons behind fluctuating wild animal populations are complex, Drs. Doug Smith, Daniel Stahler and John Vucetich conducted a joint National Park Service-MTU study into elk population at Yellowstone. Their findings found that:[10]
Elk population remained stable from the re-introduction of wolves in 1995 through to 2000, at around 17,000

In the period 2000-2004 the population dropped 50% to 8,334. During this period the Yellowstone area experienced drought conditions, and increased hunting of Elk by humans.

Though hunting permits did not allow for a kill level equivalent to the total population drop, the researchers concluded that hunting, led to a “super-additive” effect, whereby a 1% direct loss rate due to hunting was magnified to significant degree due to knock-on effects, which were only exacerbated by drought conditions.[10] Although wolf predation was acknowledged to exist, it’s effect on the large population drops seen was regarded as a minor, largely insignificant factor:

“Our analysis indicates that there is greater justification for believing that the harvest rate and severe climate, together, account for at least much of the decline[10]“

Wolves attack humans all the time

Whilst it is known that wolf attacks on humans do occur, those engaged in wolf hysteria deliberately exaggerate the risk out of all proportion to implant the idea in their audience that all wolves routinely kill and eat humans.

“Wolves are blood-thirsty predators that attack and kill pets, livestock, children, and adults.[11]“

“Around here we shoot blood-thirsty predators before they kill our horses, cattle, sheep, or children.[11"

"258 Congressional Members Support Funding for Mexican Wolves Stalking Children and Wolves Terrorizing Rural Citizens[12]“

The facts in no way bear out such hysteria. Those involved in wolf hysteria often recount reports from the 18th and 19th centuries recanting real or imagined wolf attacks in Europe and Asia. Although European wolf subspecies are less wary of humans, and are able to live near higher-density human populations than their North American cousins there are no reports of attacks.

[13] As the map clearly shows, no wolf subspecies present on the Eurasian landmass is present on the North American landmass.

Statistics compiled by Norwegian Institute for Nature Research (NINA) on global wild (not captive) wolf attacks show that in the period 1950-2000, (50 years) there were only 13 confirmed cases of wolf attacks on humans in North America, none of which were fatal.[14].

In the United States alone (not the whole of North America), approximately 1 million reported instances of domestic dogs biting humans per year, with an average of 16 to 18 fatal attacks per annum.

(According to Wikimedia Commons,  It is estimated that two percent of the US population, 4.7 million people, are bitten (by dogs) each year.[3] In the 1980s and 1990s the US averaged 17 fatalities per year, while in the 2000s this has increased to 26.[4] 77% of dog bites are from the pet of family or friends, and 50% of attacks occur on the dog owner’s property.[4])

===

Wolves spread disease

Groups and politicians opposed to wolf conservation often use the claim that wolves spread diseases to livestock and game populations. [15] Whilst wolf populations, like that of any wild animal, carry disease, as apex predators they are more often than not a “dead end” for transmission of disease, and are of little concern when it comes to disease management in most livestock and game populations.[15]

The most serious diseases affecting wolf populations are those which also affect domestic canines, parvo, mange and intestinal worms.[16]In all cases, transmission of the disease is driven infinitely more by domestic dogs than wolves, and it is believed that in most cases these diseases have been introduced to the wolf population by domestic dogs.  A notable exception is the presence of mange in North American wolf populations in the Rocky mountains. This population was deliberately infected by government veterinarians in 1909 as an attempt to “exterminate” the wolf population, spread to coyotes and other mammals, and eventually re-infected wolves upon their reintroduction to the area.

===

A common refrain is that the only effective solution to any or all of the above is to drastically reduce the population of wolves,[18]. This inevitably entails lethal intervention on the part of humans. Such actions are proposed by many livestock producers as the panacea to all ills, and is, unsurprisingly, encouraged and guided by the hunting, trapping and fur lobby organisations, which naturally present themselves as the only viable way of going about any such lethal solution. Alas, many hunting methods are exceedingly inhumane, with methods such as leg traps being commonplace in North America, though are banned in the EU due to concerns over its inhumane nature.[19]

Other excessively cruel/inhumane methods used include hunting wolves using specially trained flocks of eagles, a method historically and currently used in Central Asia,[20] and recommended in proposals to open up the hunting of wolves in the lower 48 states of the US.[21]

===

See Footnotes

http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Wolf_hysteria

===

Meet The Wolf….Fact Not Fiction

http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com/2010/11/06/meet-the-wolffacts-not-fiction/

===

Tracking science: Biologist’s findings show forest diversity, health influenced by wolves

Written and photographed by MICHAEL JAMISON of the Missoulian | Posted: Sunday, October 25, 2009 9:00 am

POLEBRIDGE – A clinging mist quieted the morning meadow, the icy hem of its robes brushing silent against autumn’s crackling knee-high grass.

In the darkest shadows, the cold crunch of snow remained, criss-crossed with wolf tracks, bear tracks, elk and deer tracks. Scat and bone and hair and hide. These were the morning news reports written in muddied prints, each with a thin film of ice.

Cristina Eisenberg scanned the headlines, then waded into the meadow to read the particulars.

“It’s all here,” the researcher said. “You just have to know the language.”

To the west, ranging grasslands rose gently to an aspen knoll, the trees all tall white ghosts trembling in the dull gloom of fog. A low row of leafy 10-footers skirted the meadow, backed by a towering canopy now a week or more past fall’s golden height.

There were small young trees, and tall old trees, but no middle-aged aspens and that, combined with the frozen tracks, told Eisenberg something very important about this place.

Until about 1920, wolves patrolled these meadows, which have long been an important wintering ground for elk. Then humans hunted the predators into extinction here, and for 60 years or more the elk grazed in peace. By the mid-1980s, however, wolves were recolonizing the landscape, straying south from Canada to reclaim this western fringe of Glacier National Park.

The 100-year-old aspens grew up with wolves. So did the 20-year-olds. There are no middle-agers, Eisenberg said, because without wolves to run the elk, all the young aspen sprouts were browsed to death.

“It is,” she said, “clear and profound. The wolves leave an indelible mark on the entire ecosystem.”

Read more: http://missoulian.com/lifestyles/territory/article_3ec9fc54-c01f-11de-bf16-001cc4c002e0.html

Photo: Courtesy Rational Wiki

Posted in: Wolf  Wars, Wolf Myths

Tags: Wolf hysteria, moral panics, scaremongering, demonization of wolves, livestock industry, hunting lobbies

Ground Hog Day….

It’s Ground Hog day in the Northwest, as Wolf Wars plays out over and over. Oregon and Washington’s tiny wolf populations are being subjected to the same “wolf hysteria” that plagues the rest of the Northern Rockies.

Here’s a good article from the NYT on the state of wolf wars in the Pacific Northwest.

=======

Conflict Over Northern Rockies Delisting for Wolves Extends to Pacific Northwest

By LAURA PETERSEN of Greenwire
Published: June 16, 2011

While the battle over Northern Rockies gray wolf management has been most visible in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming, wolf issues are also heating up in the Pacific Northwest as Washington and Oregon strive to manage small but growing packs.

Environmentalists are blasting Oregon wildlife managers for killing two wolves last month, dropping the state’s wolf population to 17. The state also has issued 30 permits authorizing land owners to kill wolves caught attacking livestock or dogs.

Meanwhile, Washington is struggling to develop a recovery and management plan that satisfies both wolf advocates and opponents as wolves move back into the state, which is now home to three confirmed packs.

Gray wolves in the eastern third of Washington and Oregon were removed by Congress from the federal Endangered Species List in May along with wolves in Montana, Idaho and parts of Utah. The Northern Rockies delisting measure was inserted into a last-minute budget deal funding the federal government through the rest of the fiscal year (Land Letter, May 5).

However, wolves are still protected by federal law in Wyoming and in the western two-thirds of Oregon and Washington. State law also protects wolves in the two Pacific Northwest states, where the animals were once abundant before being extirpated as ranching and farming expanded in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

But as Rocky Mountain wolves slowly recovered after the late 1970s, some of the animals began to trickle into the Pacific Northwest, giving rise to conflicts between ranchers, property owners and wildlife advocacy groups “When wolves came into Oregon, they came into a different political, social and ecological landscape,” said Rob Klavins, wildlands advocate for Oregon Wild. “We had a hope Oregon could do better than places like Montana, Idaho and Wyoming, and up until last year we had this feeling of ‘all right, we can avoid the wolf wars.’”

‘Wolf hysteria’

But last week, Oregon Wild joined a coalition of 11 groups in writing to the state Department of Fish and Wildlife accusing the agency of violating its management plan and state law by baiting wolves back to the site of reported depredations and failing to adequately document and publicly share information about non-lethal measures taken to prevent depredations before issuing kill permits.

The agency also has approved the killing of a third wolf and distributed at least 30 take permits to livestock owners.

The coalition requested that the take permits issued to ranchers be suspended until some of their concerns are resolved. But so far, Oregon regulators have no plans to do so.

 Michelle Dennehy, an ODFW spokesperson, said regulators are adhering to the state’s 2005 wolf management plan, which calls for establishing four breeding pairs — defined as a mated male and female that produce two pups that survive to their first birthday — but also allowing for the killing of wolves that are witnessed attacking livestock or dogs.

“We need to meet our conservation mandate, but we also have to address chronic livestock losses when they occur,” Dennehy said.

Oregon’s wolf management plan earned qualified support from both environmentalists and ranchers when it passed six years ago, in part because the plan requires that non-lethal actions be taken to deter wolf predation before sanctioned killings can occur.

Until last month’s two wolf takings, only two wolves had been killed in Oregon for livestock depredation since 2005.

But, Klavins said, “Last year, some wolves were seen on private property, and we started to see the beginnings of wolf hysteria.

“What started to happen was every single dead cow was of course a wolf kill … when further investigations were showing that for the most part that wasn’t the case,” he added.

Anti-wolf sentiment appears to be growing in the region, with some critics describing wolves as “four-legged piranhas of the West,” even though depredation accounts for a small fraction of livestock losses. In 2010, fewer than a dozen cows and calves were killed by wolves compared to 55,000 lost to disease, weather and other causes, Klavins said.

Read More: http://www.nytimes.com/gwire/2011/06/16/16greenwire-conflict-over-northern-rockies-delisting-for-w-59888.html

Photo: Courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Posted in: Wolf Wars

Tags: wolf hysteria, wolf wars, Pacific Northwest, Oregon wolves, Washington wolves

Published in: on June 19, 2011 at 2:19 am  Comments (2)  
Tags: , , , ,

Who’s Afraid Of The Big, Bad Idaho Legislature?

It looks like some people are more afraid of the Idaho legislature, after they passed the “wolf emergency resolution”. then they are of wolves. I salute the “flat-earthers” in the Idaho legislature for making themselves look completely and utterly foolish, proving once again why Idaho should never, ever be allowed to ‘manage” wolves who are so unfortunate to live in that state.

From magicvalley.com:

“On Tuesday, Huckleberries — an Idaho blog of the Spokesman-Review newspaper in Spokane, Wash. — posted an online poll that asked readers, “What scares you more: the Idaho Legislature in the Statehouse or wolves in the forest?”

The legislators won, 74 percent to 10 percent.”

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And in the end, hysteria triumphs in Idaho Legislature

http://www.magicvalley.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_20ceeffa-df5b-57b7-a468-ad98a8c95fca.html

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They have totally lost it. This statement alone is enough to prove that.

From the Spokesman Review:

“Last-minute legislation to declare a disaster emergency in Idaho due to wolves has cleared the Senate on a 27-8 vote and headed to the governor’s desk, after just being introduced in the House two days ago. “There’s anti-wolf coalition groups all over the state that are pleading with us to do something,” declared Sen. Monty Pearce, R-New Plymouth, the bill’s Senate sponsor. He said people in Idaho are living in fear of their children being attacked by wolves at school bus stops, and “women going to the mailbox and being held hostage by wolves surrounding them.”

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Wake up flat-earthers….wolves have not killed anyone in the lower forty eight in a hundred years of record keeping. They are not snatching children from bus stops or attacking anyone. This is what fear mongering and scapegoating will do. If you want to fear something how about  hunting accidents, almost 100 people are killed EVERY year in hunting accidents and 1ooo more are injured. That’s a threat to innocent people, including children.

Toddler killed in hunting accident by stray bullet in Bethel

SWAN LAKE, N.Y.  —  An upstate toddler was killed by a stray bullet when a New York City deer hunter fired his rifle too close to her grandparents’ Hudson Valley home.

Edward Taibi, 45, of Queens was being held without bail Monday after arraignment on a second-degree manslaughter charge in the town of Bethel court. Taibi was hunting from a tree stand Sunday afternoon in rural Sullivan County when he shot a deer. He came down from the stand and fired the .30-caliber rifle again about 400 feet away from a trailer home in Swan Lake, a small community just south of the Catskill Mountains.

The bullet hit 16-month-old Charly Skala in the upper body. She was flown to Westchester Medical Center, where she died. Police said the child’s parents live in nearby Woodburne.

Read more:http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,453464,00.html#ixzz1ImNLmKI9
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Our beloved dogs bite four million people every  year and kill another twenty or so. I’m a dog lover  but those are the facts. Are we going to pass emergency resolutions to stop hunting in Idaho or pass a law forbidding people from owning dogs, because they sometimes bite and kill people? Certainly not!

This behavior shows how crazy and nutty this has gotten. It’s the Salem Witch Hunts all over again. No facts just spreading lies and fear. Shame on the people who are promoting this. SHAME!!!!!!!

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From Western Watersheds Project:

Take Action: Reject Anti-wolf Hysteria

http://www.westernwatersheds.org/news-media/online-messenger/take-action-reject-anti-wolf-hysteria

Posted in: Wolf Wars

Tags: WWP stands up for wolves, wolf hysteria, lies and damn lies, spreading hate and fear, Salem Witch Hunts, flat-earthers

Stop The Presses….Wolves Aren’t Killing All The Elk in Idaho or Anywhere Else For That Matter!

 

Later, man (Photo Courtesy Flickr Sigma Eye)

UPDATE: I was ready to post this on August 5th but the relisting news broke the same day and that trumped everything.  It’s a little dated but still timely. 

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Stop the presses. IDFG recently released a study confirming what we already knew, wolves aren’t killing all the elk in Idaho. Now I can sleep at night. I was tossing and turning trying to figure out why or how a predator would kill off its prey base?

This is not news to wolf advocates. After all, if wolves ate all the elk in Idaho they’d be leaving Idaho in droves, dispersing to other states to eat all their elk. See how this works? Eventually they would travel the country wiping out ungulates everywhere. Once every last deer and elk were gone the wolves would be forced to return to GINORMOUS Canadian wolf land, where I suppose those wolves  haven’t eaten all the elk for some unknown reason? 

Of course I’m kidding but the hysteria surrounding this issue has been staggering. Hunters act like wolves are the only predators in the forest. It seems they’ve selectively forgotten the deadliest predator of all,  THEMSELVES.  In my opinion human hunters role in the decline of some elk populations has been understated. It’s just too politically incorrect for any politician or state game agency to infer that hunters kill lots of ungulates. Not only do they kill a large number of them but they go after the best and the biggest elk and deer. Wolves OTOH, cull the weak, sick and old. Yes they occasionally kill healthy animals but wolves are opportunistic hunters.  They don’t own high-powered rifles with scopes or  fancy hunting gear, wolves are fed by their feet , as the famous quote goes. They have to work very hard for a meal. When wolves chase down elk, deer or moose there is the potential for a flying  hoof making contact with any part of their body. Many wolves suffer crippling injuries or fatal ones while hunting.  If anyone deserves to hunt it’s the wolf.  To continually be called on to defend wolves for doing what they were put on this earth to do is ridiculous.  As long as we’re talking about elk we’re not talking about wolves.

From the Times News, Magicvalley.com:

“……the report showed that hunters were the biggest cause of elk kills in two other areas with declining populations: the Pioneer zone east of Ketchum, and Island Park near Rexburg. In the Island Park zone, hunters killed 17 percent of collared elk while wolves killed none.”

So there you have it, hunters actually contribute to prey declines. What shocking news….NOT!

State game agencies exist to “manage” wildlife, meaning lots of deer, elk and moose but few wolves, bears, lions and coyotes .

That’s how it works, it’s called “Wildlife Management” and it’s turning our forests into zoos. There is nothing natural about artificially high numbers of one animal over another, manipulating our wildlife for their own purposes which are:

• Money for state game agencies from licensing fees.

• Lots of animals for hunters to kill.

What about the wants and needs of over ninety percent of Americans that don’t hunt?  Well my friends, as you may have guessed, we don’t count. 

I noticed the study didn’t fail to mention the six elk lost to wolves in the LOLO zone.

“Biologists found that wolves killed significant numbers of collared elk in only one area, the Lolo zone along U.S. Highway 12 in north Idaho. Over the three years, the report claims wolves killed 20 percent of the Lolo sample, or about six elk. Three-quarters of the collared elk survived, less than Fish and Game’s survival goal of 88 percent.”

Of course they aren’t trying to justify IDFG’s recent edict allowing four outfitters to kill up to five wolves each in the LOLO.  No not at all.  I think the outfitters only managed to kill five poor wolves, who were just minding their own business, after having survived the brutal Idaho hunts, that didn’t end until March 31, 2010. Just to refresh everyone’s memory the Idaho wolf hunt lasted seven long months, right through wolf breeding and denning season but I digress.

Well at least they admitted the LOLO elk  herd was sinking long before wolves were ever reintroduced to Idaho. And finally someone mentioned the severe winter of 96/97, which anyone living in Idaho and Montana knows about. There was so much snow people’s roofs were collapsing. It wiped out the white tail deer in Montana and had the same effect on deer and elk in Idaho.

“White said deteriorating habitat in the Lolo zone has contributed to declining elk numbers since at least 1988, before wolves entered the picture. The population dropped by 40 percent during the severe winter of 1996-97 alone. Bears and cougars also kill many elk. Just across the border, Montana biologists are starting a similar collaring study in Ravalli County, where one factor of elk decline may be high human population growth.

The report said wolves caused the highest number of deaths in two other areas with declining populations. But in the Smoky Mountain zone west of Ketchum, where wolves were said to have killed 5 percent of about 30 collared elk, other predators and hunters together killed 7 percent. The Sawtooth zone, west of Stanley, had similar results.

Conversely, the report showed that hunters were the biggest cause of elk kills in two other areas with declining populations: the Pioneer zone east of Ketchum, and Island Park near Rexburg. In the Island Park zone, hunters killed 17 percent of collared elk while wolves killed none.”

Maybe if  they stopped killing wolves and other predators things wouldn’t be so out of whack. And it is out of whack because our forests and wild lands are not meant to have elevated numbers of one animal over the other. The states decide who the good and bad animals are.  The good animals are the ones that hunters pay to shoot, the bad animals are the ones that compete with hunters for the same prey.  Since wolves, bears, mountain lions and coyotes don’t pay licensing fees or vote, they are expendable. 

We can’t let anything get in the way of artificially boosting ungulate numbers for profit, now can we?

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F&G: Wolves not causing most elk losses

Saturday, July 31, 2010 1:20 am

http://magicvalley.com/news/local/wood-river/article_64d3fe91-1afd-5794-b5a0-62129c6f11ca.html

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Photo: Later, man (Photo Courtesy Flickr Sigma Eye)

Posted in: Idaho wolves, Howling For Justice

Tags: elk study,  hunting, wolf hysteria,

 

Published in: on September 15, 2010 at 2:29 am  Comments (14)  
Tags: , , , , ,

Assault on the Endangered Species Act and the War On Wolves…

There is no rest for the weary. One day after Judge Molloy relisted gray wolves in the Northern Rockies, the whining over his decision began and there is no sign it will abate, in fact it gets louder by the day. The drumbeat of negative wolf articles seems never ending.  I have never in my life read or heard so  much complaining. It’s like the sound of  a thousand three year olds crying in unison. All because wolf hunts were called off. 

Here are a few sample headlines from the hundreds and hundreds complaining about Judge Molloy’s decision.

Fish and Game disappointed with wolves’ relisting

http://www.kboi2.com/news/local/100152644.htm

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Gazette opinion: Wolf ruling endangers state management solutions

http://billingsgazette.com/news/opinion/editorial/gazette-opinion/article_d811fbb8-a427-11df-9c00-001cc4c03286.html

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Gray wolf back on protect list in Mont. and Idaho, to ranchers and hunters ire

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/08/08/AR2010080802773.html?wprss=rss_nation

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Local sportsmen group asks state to control wolves

http://www.ravallirepublic.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/99d0c6ea-a5b7-11df-8878-001cc4c002e0.html

The negative headlines go on and on but you get the picture. If you do a search on gray wolves, there is an overwhelming number of negative reports on wolves regaining their federal protections.  Once again environmentalists and wolf advocates voices have been drowned out by the anti-wolf crowd. Apparently nobody cares what we think or feel about this important decision and what it was like watching the horrendous wolf slaughter over the past year.  Nope, it’s only the hunters and ranchers opinions that seem to matter. We are left out in the cold once again, along with the wolves. We werent’t allowed the luxury of enjoying the victory for one day before all the threats and hate spewing rhetoritc started.

By reading the media articles you would get the idea wolves lack support and everyone wants them “managed”.  That is patently not true. What IS true is the media seems to have signed onto the anti-wolf side of the story. Maybe they decided it sells more papers or increases hits to their websites.

Don’t be fooled by lopsided reporting filled with half truths and distortions. Wolves have supporters all over the world and if the only way to get the truth out is to report positive wolf news on our blogs and facebook pages, so be it. Actually the main stream media is becoming less and less relevant, as people turn to alternative sources to get their news.

We have to question what’s behind this crazy, out of control response? I believe it’s an orchestrated effort to trash the endangered species act. Do you remember any of the groups that signed onto the delisting lawsuit?  The Safari Club and the NRA, come to mind. They have a big stake in this. How happy would the Safari Club be to see the ESA weakened?  

It’s also no accident Senator Baucus and Rep. Denny Rehburg, both from Montana,  are talking about changing the ESA to ban gray wolves from federal protection. Wolves once again are being used as political pawns and scapegoats.  When these politicians are talking about wolves they don’t have to talk about the almost 10% unemployment rate or the rock bottom approval rating of Congress, at 11%, the lowest since those records have been kept. It’s a transparent strategy at best and I’m sure Americans have more on their minds then denying wolves ESA protections. Are wolves causing unemployment? Have wolves caused the housing crisis? The anti-wolf crowd needs to get in touch with reality, wolves are very popular among many Americans. The GYA brings in $35 million a year to the area, higher then hunting profits. Wolves are actually more valuable to the states alive then dead, if they would stop listening to just ranchers and hunters and tap into wolf ecoctourism.

But no, our politicians in Montana are too busy kissing up to the ranching and hunting lobbies.

From the Flathead Beacon:

Bill Would Prohibit Wolves from Federal Protections

By Kellyn Brown , 08-11-10

Just days before a federal judge reinstated protections for wolves in Montana and Idaho, a Texas lawmaker introduced a little-noticed resolution that would prohibit wolves from being considered a threatened species. H.R. 6028, introduced by Republican Congressman Chet Edwards on July 30, basically adds one line to the Endangered Species Act.

Here’s the bill:

To amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 to prohibit treatment of the Gray Wolf as an endangered species or threatened species.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. PROHIBITION ON TREATMENT OF GRAY WOLF AS AN ENDANGERED SPECIES OR THREATENED SPECIES.

Section 4(a) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (16 U.S.C. 1533(a)) is amended by adding at the end the following new paragraph:

‘(4) The Gray Wolf (Canis lupus) shall not be treated as an endangered species or threatened species for purposes of this Act.’

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The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, who just last year was trumpeting their success in recovering elk populations across the country, is now calling on Congress to re-write the ESA. They’ve made a perceptible turn to the extreme anti-wolf position, which doesn’t come as a shock to me. When the RMEF released their rosy picture of elk recovery across the country, in the Spring of 2009, the wolf issue was just heating up. I don’t think they had any idea it would blow up the way it did. Their members had to be upset the RMEF was saying elk were doing so well, it didn’t fit in with the “wolves are killing all the elk mantra”. So now the organizaton has stepped up their rhetoric. David Allen, CEO, RMEF wrote to this blog back in October 2009.

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October 26, 2009 at 11:12 am

David Allen said:

Relative to your comments quoting RMEF elk numbers being higher than 25 years ago, you are only using part of the facts. You can make anything appear to support your position when you only use partial information.

Elk numbers are down substantially in the areas where the wolves have been allowed to flourish. Unfettered and unchecked management of the wolf population is the worst kind of wildlife management possible. We have the most successful wildlife model in the world and it isn’t because we micro-manage one species over another. Our wildlife system is not only about the wolf; it is about all species.

Goals and criteria were set for the wolf reintroduction and have been substantially surpassed. If those who support the reintroduction of the wolf want a balanced playing field then you will have to begin to stick to what was originally agreed to and stop moving the goal line.

If folks truly want the “natural process” to manage wildlife, then we all (Man) have to leave. Man put nature out of balance and Man has to manage wildlife or leave this planet. The states have managed our wildlife populations very successfully for decades; we will fail fast if we take this management out of their hands.

We do not live in a zoo.

David Allen
President & CEO
RMEF

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Nabeki’s response:

On October 26, 2009 at 1:35 pm nabeki said: |

Hi David,
It’s pretty hard to argue with your own numbers. Your organization reported that Idaho has 115, 000 elk, up 5% from 110,000 in 1984 and Montana has 150,000 elk, up 66% from 90,595 in 1984. Then you turn around and say well what we really meant is elk numbers are up in those states but only where there are no wolves. That doesn’t make sense at all. I find it ironic that hunters are so concerned about elk numbers because they want to be the ones to kill them and not the wolf. So really the issue hinges around hunters believing wolves are their competition.

Conservation Group Celebrates New Data on Milestone Anniversary
MISSOULA, Mont.—Wild elk populations in 23 states are higher now than 25 years ago when the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF) was launched to help conserve habitat for elk and other wildlife.

Nationally, elk numbers grew 44 percent, from about 715,000 to over 1,031,000, between 1984 and 2009 (see chart).

During that same time span, Elk Foundation fundraisers have generated millions of dollars, which helped leverage millions more, for a conservation effort that has enhanced or protected nearly a square mile of habitat per day—now totaling over 5.5 million acres.

Population highlights among top elk states: California, Nevada and New Mexico experienced the greatest increases with growth exceeding 100 percent. Colorado, Montana and Utah herds are 50-70 percent larger. Oregon and Wyoming are up 20-40 percent.
http://www.rmef.org/NewsandMedia/NewsReleases/2009/ElkPopulations.htm

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So I don’t see a problem with elk, the only problem I see is an irrational fear of wolves. So much of what is written about wolves is untrue and sensational. But what is true, is wolves are healthy for the environment. Look at the Yellowstone example, wolves dispersed elk from stream and river beds, which have brought back the ash and willow trees for the first time in sixty years. Beaver and song birds have moved into these areas following this rejuvenation.

Yes, elk as you know, have changed their browsing behavior and may be harder to hunt but it seems to me that hunters need to change their tactics to encompass that, instead of complaining about it.

Congratulations to the RMEF for continuing to help keep elk populations healthy and strong. I would only hope they wouldn’t be caught up in the wolf rhetoric that seems to plague other hunting organizations.

For the wolves, For the wild ones,
Nabeki

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David Allens’s response, CEO, RMEF:

On October 26, 2009 at 7:08 pm David Allen said: |

By stating we need less management you demonstrate you do not understand the science of managing wildlife.

You also continue to pick and choose the stats you like that support your position but ignore what contradicts your position.

This is how we got into this mess. Intellectual integrity has been missing from day one of the wolf reintroduction.

Wolves must be managed as all other wildlife, period; and they will be I can assure you.

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Nabeki’s response:

On October 26, 2009 at 7:59 pm nabeki said: |

Hi David,
I quoted YOUR numbers from the RMEF, so I’m not sure what you’re questioning? On wolf-cattle predation I quoted the USDA.

The negative dogma surrounding wolves will continue as long as people are grounded in emotion about these animals. Wolf advocates will fight just as hard for sound wolf policies, I can assure you of that and what’s going on now is not sound wolf management. Enough of these animals are killed by the feds every year, let alone having wolf hunts mere months after they were delisted. Minnesota with their 3000 wolves stated they wouldn’t even consider a hunt for five years if wolves were ever delisted in their state. Yet we have the Governor of Idaho going on television, ramping up the wolf rhetoric stating, “I’m prepared to bid for the first ticket to shoot a wolf myself.” I believe over 25,000 wolf tags were sold in Montana and Idaho combined to kill 295 wolves. Who’s being emotional about wolves, the conservationists or the anti-wolf crowd?

It’s obvious we don’t agree on this issue. I’m sure the 100,000 hunters roaming Montana’s wilderness will be able to kill the remaining 55 wolves before wolf season is shut down. And I’m equally sure they’ll have a successful elk hunting season with the numbers of elk way up in this state.

Nabeki

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I saw all this coming from them but I never thought they would go so far as to try and gut the ESA.  The irony of all this is it was the ESA that saved the wolf and brought them back from the brink  in the West. It gave wolves the protection they needed to make a comeback. Now there are calls to change wolves protections because the anti-wolf crowd lost in court. They’re acting like typical sore losers. By calling for extreme measures to kill federally protected wolves,  it proves wolf adovcates’ point, wolves are severely persecuted and scapegoated. They cannot exist or survive long term without protection.

August 6, 2010

RMEF Calls on Congress to Reform Endangered Species Act

http://www.rmef.org/NewsandMedia/NewsReleases/2010/ESAReform.htm

Oh but wait, there’s more. “Sportsman” and I use that word loosely, are bugging the heck out of  “wildlife managers” in both states to do somethin about those dang varmit wolves that are killing all the ungulates.  They don’t want wolves as competition, oh  no, they want to kill the elk, deer and moose themselves!!  Those pesky wolves, what right do that have to hunt and survive?  Don’t we have dominion over them? They just can’t be allowed to live in peace, now can they? 

MANAGE,MANAGE, MANAGE, that’s the message.  What would happen if wolves weren’t collared and relentlessly tracked like terrorists? They might actually be able to live out their lives in relative peace, without interference and brutality from humans. I know one thing, they wouldn’t be very easy to find without those infernal collars. Most wolves, unless they’re habituated, don’t want to be any where near humans and can you blame them?

Just to remind everyone, wolves kill very few livestock . In the expanse of the Northern Rockies in 2009,  just 214 cows were lost to wolves, out of six million cows. To put that in perspective, 10,500 calves died due to winter storms in one year. In the yearly interagency wolf report for 2009, written by USFWS, which covers the Northern Rockies, the report stated in part: ….”wolf depredation results in a comparatively small proportion of all livestock losses”….

From the Billings Gazette:

“Officials say wolves account for a fraction of livestock losses.

In 2009, sheep producers reported losing 56,000 animals for reasons other than predators, such as disease and weather. They also reported losing another 18,800 animals to all predators, mostly coyotes. Eagles were blamed for another 600 sheep deaths, the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Statistics Service reports.”

Here are the charts the feds and states don’t want you to see:

Vulures killed more cows then wolves that year. Coyotes and domestic dogs were in the number one and two position. Even so all predators are responsible for a tiny blip of livestock losses.(NASS 2006)

Of the 104,500,000 cattle grazing in the US,  notice the small number of deaths attributed to all predation compared to the 3,861,000 cattle deaths from a myriad of non-predation factors. (NASS 2006)

On their quest to please the tiny,VOCAL, minoriy of wolf hunters, ranchers and haters, Montana and Idaho want to  revive the 10j rule to reduce the wolf  population significantly. Idaho has declared they want to slash  the wolf population down to 500 animals from 850, they made this statement before and  AFTER wolves were relisted.

The 10j rule is part of the original wolf “management” plan,  an awful concession to ranchers. Wolf advocates were willing to make those concessions back in the ninties, so they could bring wolves back but it’s turned into a bloody, brutal tool, that gets entire wolf packs, including puppies, killed.  Montana and Idaho are talking about using the 10j rule to kill wolves for “prey declines”.

“Subsection (j) in Section 10 of the Endangered Species Act permits reintroduction of  an endangered species to a location where it used to live, but has since been driven out or exterminated. For each reintroduction effort, a special rule, called a “10(j) rule,” is written, which determines whether the population is essential to the survival of the species and specifically describes how the species will be treated by agency staff, whether lethal control can ever be used on the species, and what private citizens can or cannot do in regard to the species. Reintroduced species are managed differently than other endangered species. Federal agencies have more control over these reintroduced populations, which they call “experimental populations,” than they do for endangered populations that have not been reintroduced.

The 10j rule was rewritten in 2008, to allow more leeway to kill wolves. It’s being challenged in court:

From the Ravalli Republic: 

The ESA’s 10(j) rule was revised in 2008 by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to give states more latitude in managing wolves that were deemed to be impacting ungulate herds.

That same year environmental groups filed a lawsuit challenging the revised rule in U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy’s court.

Wolves were delisted in March 2009 and the lawsuit was put on hold after Idaho dropped its request to implement the rule.

Michael Robinson of the Center for Biological Diversity said that lawsuit will move forward now that states are considering asking for permission to use the rule to kill wolves.

Robinson said wolves have been made the scapegoat of declining elk numbers that are the result of habitat degradation and other factors.

“We consider it a misplaced attempt to use the rule to kill wolves … our lawsuit will move forward,” Robinson said.

Wildlife Services is taking comments until August 31, 2010 on a environmental draft analysis that examines the myriad of ways to kill and “manage” wolves, including killing pups and sterilizing alpha pairs. Isnt’ that just great? Wolves have just been relisted, they are a federally protected species yet Wildife (Dis)Services wants to hear from you about their so called “wolf management plan” or more brutal ways to kill wolves.

Please make sure you get your comments in by August 31, 2010. There are four alternatives.  I’m adding a fifth one…STOP KILLING AMERICA’S WOLVES FOR AGRIBUSINESS!!

These shadow trophy hunts are being paid for with your tax dollars people, a subsidy for agriculture. It’s not a coincidence Wildlife Services is part of the USDA, their extermination arm.

Here are the choices:

• 4.4.1 Alternative 1 – Continue the Current Wolf Damage Management Program (No Action)

This would be keeping the status quo. Slaughtering wolves the way they have been doing, which is bad enough.

• 4.4.2 Alternative 2 – Expanded Wolf Damage Management Program (Proposed Action, Preferred Alternative)

This disgusting option includes denning  (using a poisonous gas cartridge , gassing wolf pups in their dens) and sterilizing alpha pairs of wolves. Who kills puppies and sterilizes wolves? This is what we have passing as “wolf management”? SHAME!!!

• 4.4.3 Alternative 3- Nonlethal Wolf Damage Management Only.

Under this Alternative, WS would not conduct any lethal wolf control and would have no impact on the wolf population in Idaho.

• 4.4.4 Alternative 4 – No Federal Wolf Damage Management in Idaho

http://www.aphis.usda.gov/regulations/pdfs/nepa/idaho_wolf_ea.pdf

Contact Wildlife Services and vehemently oppose any sterilization of alpha pairs or gassing of pups in their den. I can’t believe we’re even discussing these brutal policies in the 21st century.

From The Wildlife News:

USDA-APHIS-WS
Idaho WS State Office
9134 W. Blackeagle Drive
Boise, Idaho 83709
telephone: (208) 378-5077
fax: (208) 378-5349

OPPORTUNITY FOR PUBLIC COMMENT

Written public comments will be accepted through
August 31, 2010
and can be submitted via e-mail to:

wsidwolfea@aphis.usda.gov

or by mail or fax to the Idaho WS State Office
(address and fax listed above).

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More of Idaho’s take on  gray wolves relisting:

Idaho F&G: Explore wolf hunt, despite relisting

The Associated Press

Published: 08/06/10

http://www.idahostatesman.com/2010/08/06/1294553/idaho-fg-explore-wolf-hunt-despite.html

Boy, Montana and Idaho have their thinking caps on and as the deputy director of Idaho Fish and Game stated “There may be some rock out there we haven’t turned over.”

These are the people we are supposed to believe are “managing” wolves responsibly. We all know “management” is a code word for killing wolves. I’ll say it again and it needs to be repeated over and over.  State game agencies SHOULD NOT BE MANAGING PREDATORS. It’s a conflict of interest. They are looking out for the wants and needs of hunters, not wolves.

To add to the growing list of ways to get around the ESA  Montana wants to allow sport hunters to kill wolves for agribusiness instead of Wildlife Services. Hmmm, I thought Montana wanted to kill wolves because they were killing all the elk and livestock? But of course we know that’s a red herring.  Apparently there are hunters out there who are pretty darn disappointed the wolf hunts have been cancelled. I guess the “wolf managers” don’t want to disappoint those poor hunters and deny them the great opportunity to shoot a wolf in the guts, hear it’s agonizing howls and screams. Oh, they must find a way.

Montana seeks to restore hunting for endangered wolves

August 11, 2010

http://w ww.greatfallstribune.com/article/20100811/NEWS01/100811014/1002/rss

This reminds me of a meeting held in Kalispell, Montana this year, concerning the increase of wolf hunting quotas. Apparently one of the speakers at the meeting was asked why Montana was killing wolves, when they know full well wolves kill very few livestock compared to other factors plus elk were doing pretty well in the state. His answer, “BECAUSE WE CAN”. There you have it wolf warriors, “because we can“. But wait what about the marauding Canadian wolves killing everything in sight?  Gee, I guess that’s just propaganda to appease the wolf haters, you know sort of preaching to their base.  He went on to say something to the effect there’s been a tremendous interest in wolf hunting, even from other states. I guess people are calling Montana to find out when they’ll get their chance to murder a wolf. Can’t disappoint those people, the show must go on.

So you see dear readers it’s not about cows or elk, it’s about WOLF HUNTING. Hunters want the chance to slaughter a wolf for $19. Quite the bargain, huh? That’s all a wolves life is worth in Montana, just $19 a tag, of course the price goes up to $350 if you’re an out of state wolf hunter.

The latest and most egregious plan to circumvent the ESA and kill wolves is a lame idea to hold RESEARCH HUNTS!!!`  Apparently the states have been watching too many episodes of  Whale Wars.

Japanese whaling ship… with RESEARCH written in English on the side of the vessel. They’ re not fooling anyone by killing whales in the “Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary” for RESEARCH.  Is this what the states have in mind for wolves? We were born in the dark but it wasn’t last night!!

These are the same people who have been killing gray wolves at record rates. USFWS recently killed two wolf packs in Wyoming , including all the pups. Wildlife Services has been killing wolves, including entire packs in Montana  for agribusiness, Idaho does the same thing. They held wolf hunts mere months after wolves were deslisted.  They created a wolf archery season along with baiting, calling and trapping for the now cancelled 2010 wolf hunts.  They didn’t seem to care one whit what was happening to wolves and their social structure. 500 wolves died in 2009 alone in the Northern Rockies, yet when wolf advocates questioned what effect the “Russian Roulette” killing was having on wolves, this is what we heard. 

Wildlife officials mull ‘research hunts’ for wolves

By MATTHEW BROWN – Associated Press writer trib.com | Posted: Thursday, August 12, 2010 12:00 am

http://trib.com/news/state-and-regional/article_28438ab2-503c-5f24-848d-ea8ad28ce4eb.html

Now they want us to swallow the notion they’re interested  in the impact of the slaughter. If only they could  hold research hunts, they could find out what you  and I already know. The double whammy of the hunts and WS killings is wrecking havoc on wolves, one of the most highly social animals on earth, second only to  humans and African lions. Doesn’t take another wolf  killing season to figure that out.

Are all the “stakeholders” (I hate that word and apparently we’re not on the list of “stakeholders),  sitting in smoke filled rooms “turning over rocks” to see what crawls out from under them to circumvent ESA? I think so.  Maybe the rooms aren’t smoke filled but the plotting is definitely going on.

From trib.com:

Wildlife officials in the Northern Rockies said Wednesday they are considering hunting wolves in the name of research to get around a recent court ruling that restored federal protections for the animals.

Environmentalists derided the proposal, vowing to challenge in court any new plans for hunting the estimated 1,367 wolves in Idaho and Montana.

“They’re adopting the Japanese whaling approach of holding hunts under the obviously erroneous concept of research,” said Mike Leahy, Rocky Mountain director for Defenders of Wildlife. “They’re trying to be too clever by half.”

UPDATE: Research Hunts nixed. They were too transparent even for Montana FWP and USFWS. Now they are concentrating on “conservation hunts”, basically killing wolves for existing. They want to use the horrible 1oj rule to kill wolves for “prey declines” as a way to circumvent the ESA. Idaho announced they will slaughter 80 wolves in the Lolo zone, just for being on this earth. They claim the wolves are killing the elk in the Lolo. OMG wolves are killing elk?  How shocking?   The Lolo elk herd has been declining since the early nineties and IDFG knows it.

They are disgusting and should NOT be managing our predators.  More on the 10j coming soon.

‘Research hunt’ for wolves dropped as officials balk

By MATTHEW BROWN • Associated Press Writer • August 13, 2010

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Any and all attempts to circumvent the ESA should be met with HELL NO from wolf advocates. Please don’t take any of this lightly. I know we just won a victory but this is a war on wolves. Their relisting  was an  important win but the war rages on.

I urge you to write, call, raise your voices in protest over the  jiihad against wolves, not just wolves in the Northern Rockies but all wolves.

I beg everyone to write their congressman and senators to tell them in no uncertain terms they may not change the ESA to remove wolves protections. They work for us, not the other way around. I’ve included a link at the bottom of the post for all contacts. Be sure to write to Senator Baucus and Representaive Rehburg of Montana to express your outrage over there intentions to manipulate the ESA to remove wolves protections.

Contact Senator Max Baucus, (D) Montana

http://baucus.senate.gov/?p=contact

http://baucus.senate.gov/?p=office_locations

Senator Baucus is holding a “listening session” tomorrow,  Friday the 13th,  in Columbia Falls, Montana, on general subjects but I’m sure his statement to meddle with the ESA and deny wolves their federal protections will surely come up.

Baucus hosting Columbia Falls meeting

By Dax VanFossen

Updated: Aug 12, 2010 12:20 PM

http://www.kaj18.com/news/baucus-hosting-columbia-falls-meeting/

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Contact Representative Denny Rehburgh, (R) Montana

http://dennyrehberg.com/contact.php

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I didn’t want to write this post. I was trying to enjoy our victory but the happiness was short lived. As long as this tiny, vocal minority in the West has a stranglehold on wolves and other native carnivores, the battle will continue. 

Stand up and speak out for wolves before it’s too late, the other side will do anything to get wolves killed. This is Wolf Wars part 3000!!

Click here for contacts. We must act!!

I’m going to post a link to the contact info for the entire Congress. If anyone has access to that link, could you pass it on to me? We need a big push to shut down any meddling with the ESA by Congress.  We cannot let them touch the ESA or all protected species will be at risk. The grizzly bear could be next.

Photo: Japaense vessel, Courtesy Greenpeace

Photo: wolf, Courtesy kewlwallpapers.com

Posted in: Wolf Wars

Tags: wolf hysteria, playing dirty, 10j, IDFG, Montana FWP, USFWS, war on wolves: part 3000, thwarting ESA, tampering with ESA

 

Outrageous….Wolf Hating Website Discusses Poisoning Wolves With Xylitol!!

I thought the limit had been pushed on wolf hating but Lobo Watch, an anti-wolf website, is stating hunters may have to start playing dirty to get rid of wolves by poisoning  them with the popular sugar substitute, Xylitol, which is deadly to canines and that means WOLVES AND  PET DOGS!!

From Gary Bogue, Pets and Wildlife:

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals today reminded animal lovers and pet parents that xylitol, a sweetener found in certain sugar-free chewing gums, candies, baked goods, toothpaste, and other products can potentially cause serious and even life-threatening problems for pets.

The post, on the Lobo Watch website, titled “Is It Time To Start Fighting Dirty?”, is cloaked as a hypothetical but it’s real meaning is clear, wolves need to be gotten rid of illegally because they aren’t being killed fast enough by the state, to satisfy the wolf haters. Or heaven forbid if Judge Molloy relists wolves this summer and takes away their opportunity to kill more wolves.  It’s another version of SSS except it’s Poison, Shovel and Shuttup. Maybe not even shovel, just shuttup.

This cruelty would not only put the lives of wolves in danger but pet dogs as well:

“According to Dr. Eric Dunayer, Senior Toxicologist at the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, dogs ingesting items sweetened with xylitol could develop a fairly sudden drop in blood sugar, resulting in depression, loss of coordination and seizures.  “These signs can develop quite rapidly, at times less than 30 minutes after ingestion of the product. Therefore, it is crucial that pet owners seek veterinary treatment immediately.”  Dr. Dunayer also states that there appears to be a strong link between xylitol ingestions and the development of liver failure in dogs.

While it was previously thought that only large concentrations of xylitol could result in problems, this no longer appears to be the case.  “We seem to be learning new information with each subsequent case we manage,” says Dr. Dunayer.  “Our concern used to be mainly with products that contain xylitol as one of the first ingredients.  However, we have begun to see problems developing from ingestions of products with lesser amounts of this sweetener.”

Toby Bridges rails on about the loss of game animals due to wolves, yet The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation trumpeted the successful recovery of elk in their Spring 2009 press release. Titled “Elk Population Reflects Success of RMEF’s First 25 Years”. Montana’s elk population rose 66% to 150,000, since the RMEF  was founded in 1984. Idaho’s elk population rose 5% with 105,000 elk.  But wolf haters like to point to certain areas of Montana or Idaho where elk populations have dipped, as in northern Yellowstone. It’s true their numbers have dropped but the park was not meant to have a herd that big. Theelk were overgrazing riparian areas, stunting willow and ash, driving  away the “water managing” beavers and with them went the songbirds and other wildlife.  The wolves’ return brought balance back to the park. Today the stream and river beds of Yellowstone have been restored, all due to the wolves’ presence on the landscape.

Pronghorn antelopenumbers have surged in Yellowstone because wolves are managing coyote numbers, who prey on Pronghorn fawns. This of course is called nature and ecological balance but I’m wasting my time talking about trophic cascades to the anti-wolf crowd. They only seem to care how many ungulates are on the ground for THEM to kill. The most deadly predator is not the wolf but man.

Apparently Toby Bridges believes there is an “under the table”  agreement between the USFWS, The Humane Society, The Center for Biological Diveristy and Defenders of Wildlife, to end hunting. Of course that’s ridiculous. Actually Liz Bradley, one of Montana wolf managers, used to work with Ed Bangs at the USFWS before wolves were delisted. She, along with the rest of the “wolf team”, were out in force around Montana, last Wednesday. promoting FWP’s 2010 increased wolf hunt quotas, that will definitely double or close to triple the number of wolves that can be killed by hunters. The proposals also include a wolf archery season and backcountry rifle season.  The “wolf team” even suggested that if Judge Molloy relists wolves, they will try to find a way to hold a wolf hunt by allowing  private hunters to kill wolves for agribusiness instead of Wildlife Services. Would that not be circumventing the ESA? (that’s definitely a subject for another post)

So how the wolf hating crowd thinks wolves are getting a big break from the state game agencies and Wildlife Services, when they have been killing wolves in large numbers, (over five hundred wolves died in the Northern Rockies in 2009) ….just doesn’t add up.

Even if Toby Bridges believes in this “agreement” or any of the other silly, dangerous wolf myths he likes to throw around,  it doesn’t excuse suggesting  hunters are going to start  poisoning wolves. That is wrong, disgusting and in my opinion, illegal.

From Lobowatch:

…”should Judge Malloy once again decide in favor of the environmental groups, the sportsmen of the Northern Rockies are now ready to turn to trench warfare.  And that is likely to include some “chemical warfare”.

He goes on:

“Wolf control now has a new, until now secret, weapon.  I have a feeling that if Malloy goes against the wishes of today’s hunters, there’s going to be a whole lot of very sweet gut piles and wolf-killed carcasses dotting the landscape this fall.  Along with some supplemental feeding of wolf pups come next spring.” 

My dogs were poisoned several years ago, so this is a very touchy subject for me. Watching them in the throes of Grand Mal seizures is something I will never forget. For Bridges to coldly discuss the poisoning of wolves by hunters, is crossing over the line!  I would hope hunters will speak out about this, they cannot possibly support this type of  behavior.

I thought long and hard about posting this because I didn’t want to give Bridges the attention he apparently is seeking but it’s a serious enough threat to wolves that it can’t be ignored!

=======

Anti-wolf Web site proposes illegal poisoning of wolves

http://howlcolorado.org/2010/06/07/anti-wolf-web-site-proposes-illegal-poisoning-of-wolves/

Thanks to Jon for bringing this to my attention!!

Posted in: Wolf Wars, Howling For Justice, wolf intolerance

Tags: Xylitol poisoning wolves, wolf hysteria, wolf persecution, illegal poisoning of wolves?

Tapeworms and Wolves OH MY!!

May 16, 2010

The anti-wolfers are raging with the NEXT big wolf scare issue.

They’ve just made a startling discovery. Are you ready? Some wolves carry tapeworms. OMG what a shock!! Canines carry tapeworms??

I hate to break it to all the haters foaming at the mouth about tapeworms but DOGS carry tapeworms, so do foxes and coyotes.

CANINES carry tapeworms!

There are 72 million dogs in the United States alone and many of them carry tapeworms. At most there are 5500 wolves in the lower forty-eight, if you combine the Northern Rockies and Great Lakes wolf population.

So if wolf haters want to get worried and scared about tapeworms or the big scary Latin word they like to throw around, Echinococcus granulosus, then they better start worrying about the canines they already live with, since they are far more likely to come in contact with dogs then wolves.

Does it ever end with these people? Talk about hysteria. How long have we been living with dogs??

Here’s the spine-chilling details. Better break out your dog worming medications!!

Posted on October 8, 2008 by Maureen Anderson

Echinococcus granulosus is a tapeworm of dogs that causes a condition known as hydatid disease or hydatidosis in humans.  The parasite is found in many parts of the world, and is very common in some regions of southern South America, the Mediterranean, the Middle East, southwestern Asia, northern Africa and Australia.  To the best of our knowledge, E. granulosus does not occur in southern Ontario, but it is present in other parts of Canada including the western provinces and northern Ontario.  A related, but much nastier, tapeworm called Echinococcus multilocularis is much less commonly found in North America. (*which is carried in foxes, coyotes, dogs and cats.)

A previous Worms & Germs post described what is known as the sylvatic cycle of Echinococcus granulosus, which is thought to be a common route of infection for dogs in Canada.  In the sylvatic cycle, dogs become infected with Echinococcus by eating the internal organs (usually lungs and liver) of wild game such as moose and caribou.  The dogs then pass tapeworm eggs in their stool, which can cause infection in other wild animals (thus continuing the cycle) or in people who accidentally swallow the eggs.  In humans, Echinococcus forms slow-growing cysts (called hydatid cysts) in different organs of the body which can be very difficult to remove or treat in some cases.

Echinococcus also has a pastoral or domestic cycle.  In this cycle, dogs acquire the parasite by eating the internal organs of infected sheep, and sometimes other livestock such as cattle and swine.  This cycle is potentially very important in areas where there is a lot of sheep farming.  In some areas of Latin America, 20-95% of sheep at slaughter may have evidence of hydatid cysts in their organs.

It is much more difficult to tell when a dog is infected with Echinococcus compared to other tapeworms such as Taenia or Dipylidium.  An adult Echinococcus is tiny – only a few milimetres long (see picture right), very unlike the long, stringy white tapeworms that most people picture.  Dogs can carry hundreds, even thousands of these tiny tapeworms without showing any signs of illness at all.  The eggs can sometimes be difficult to detect on fecal examinations, and when they are seen they cannot be differentiated from Taenia eggs.  Nonetheless, this is still the best way to detect infection, so fecal examinations should be performed regularly.

Remember:

  • In areas where Echinococcus is known to exist, it’s important to have your veterinarian perform fecal examinations on your dog’s stool more frequently than the usual once-a-year, because of the serious zoonotic potential of this parasite.
  • Always wash your hands well after handling dog stools.
  • Do not let your dog eat uncooked meat, or the organs from farm animals or wild game.

http://www.wormsandgermsblog.com/2008/10/articles/animals/dogs/more-about-echinococcus-tapeworms-in-dogs/

*italics mine

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Dog Photos: Courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Posted in: Wolf Wars, wolf intolerance, Dogs

Tags: deworming, dogs, tapeworm, wolf hysteria, wolf persecution

Published in: on March 16, 2010 at 12:52 pm  Comments (21)  
Tags: , , , ,
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