Turning Wolves Into Robots?

Just when I thought I’d heard it all.

Apparently a few researchers, led by National Park Service biologist Dan Licht, came up with a plan to turn wolves figuratively into slave/ robots so they can cull ungulate herds in our national parks. What next?

Here’s the screwball plan. Elk and deer are out of control in many of our national parks because of the lack of APEX PREDATORS.  Hmmmmm whose fault is that?  This is what humans have wrought. If Wildlife Services wasn’t busy killing our native carnivores for agribusiness, maybe we wouldn’t have elk over-browsing in national parks.

The  “researchers” came up with a brilliant idea of transplanting small wolf packs so they can cull elk and deer herds in the over-browsed parks. But there’s a catch.  The wolves would have to be altered. Yes, they want to outfit the wolves with shock collars, sterilize them and  allow them to roam a small area because we can’t  have those pesky wolves killing all the cattle and sheep in the world.  Oh no, these brainiacs have it all figured out:

“Neuter the wolves, fence them in, fit them with shock collars and – just in case – add a tracking device so they can be hunted and killed if they get too far afield.”

Everything that makes a wolf a wolf will be taken away from them, their freedom, their ability to raise their families.  In effect these wolves will be slave wolves controlled by their human masters.  What a wonderful concept. And yet in this madness a stark truth is revealed. The researchers are admitting  wolves and other apex predators are vitally essential to healthy ecosystems.  Too bad we didn’t hear this from the US Fish and Wildlife Wolf Recovery Coordinator, Ed Bangs.  Instead he made this comment about the animals whose welfare he is charged with:

“Wolves fix very few problems compared to the ones they create,” said U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist Ed Bangs, who leads the Northern Rockies wolf restoration program”.

That’s not what he said back in 2000 to NOVA in an interview called Bringing Wolves Home: Ed Bangs, Wolf Recovery Coordinator, US Fish and Wildlife Services  and I quote:

“Wolves are a top-line predator. They have a major influence.”

“Wolves are the parents, the mothers, the fathers, the brothers and sisters that we always hoped we could be. I mean there’s extreme loyalty among family members, it’s everything to them. And if they leave that, then they’re exposed to possible attacks by other wolf packs or families. So when you move them somewhere different, they want to go back home.”

Ed Bangs gave this interview to NOVA over ten years ago.  What’s clear is we should never consider sterilizing wolves and turning them into slaves to do our bidding.  Wolves very being centers around family.  We  have no right to take this away from them.  As Ed stated, family is everything to them.  If we want to cull ungulate herds in national parks than reintroduce wolves into the parks and let them do what apex predators can efficiently do but drop the crazy robot wolf idea.  Wolves are persecuted enough.


Wolves pushed as “park stewards,” neutered and transplanted nationwide

By MATTHEW BROWN of the Associated Press | Posted: Monday, February 8, 2010 6:30 am



Photos Courtesy:  beonarri Flickr

Posted in: Wolf Wars

Tags:  leave wolves alone, canis lupus, stand up for wolves


“I’ve always said that the best wolf habitat resides in the human heart. You have to leave a little space for them to live.”
~ Ed Bangs

Published in: on February 8, 2010 at 12:59 pm  Comments (10)  
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