Don’t Silence The Howl!

Lookout Pack yearling 2008 WDFW

Don’t Silence the Howl!

from Anonymous for Wolves

So quickly we forget. Joe Public, the press, politicians, you and me, we appear to tire of being reminded that the problem remains, that the system is broken, that something needs to be done NOW. We become monkeys sitting comfortably on our asses, our eyes tightly shut, our fingers in our ears and our mouths so filled with food that we cannot speak.

Newspaper editors tell me that there has been enough in print lately about the Washington State wolves and that there is currently little interest in updates or fact checks.

Allow me then to remind you that wolves are being killed every day, killed and tortured by poachers, ranchers, hunters, trappers, sociopaths, and by your very own state and federal governments. Wolves are dying at the hands of state and federal agencies to “protect” irresponsibly ranged livestock and you are paying dearly for this service. You pay with your tax dollars and maybe you even pay with a heavy heart. The wolves are paying with their lives.

Between poaching, tribal takes and government issued kill orders, nowhere else in the Lower 48 is there a more dangerous place for a wolf than in the Northeast corner of Washington State. And the director of the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), Phil Anderson, has been doing his darndest to make this so, first with the death sentence carried out in September 2012 on eight members of the Wedge pack, and now, not even two years later calling for an aerial assault on the Huckleberry pack. Both packs were located in northeastern Washington, Stevens County, with members killed to pacify irresponsible ranchers busily crying wolf.

The Wedge pack was accused of attacking and eating McIrvine cows, yet necropsy reports from the dead wolves found that no, they had not been ingesting cows. At the time, WDFW’s carnivore specialist Dave Ware told a local news station that agreements with ranchers were subsequently being put into place (new best practices for non-lethal aversion tactics) for the following year to, “avoid a repeat of the Wedge Pack situation.” While Anderson had said that killing the Wedge would “hit a re-set button” between ranchers and wolf management.

McIrvine, the rancher on who’s cows the Wedge had allegedly been snacking, was quoted as saying that he believed groups with “a radical environmental agenda” were conspiring to introduce gray wolves in order “to take our (grazing) lease from us”; a lease which allows him to range livestock in terrain unsuitable for responsible ranching and for pennies an animal. Welcome to crazy town! Gray wolves have been returning to the Northern Rocky States from Canada naturally, yes, of their very own accord, without the aid of any radical environmentalists.

Are you curious of the bill from Wildlife Services for the aerially gunning of the Wedge? $76,500.00 that could have bought a lot of McIrvine cows!

Said another of WDFW’s carnivore specialists recently, “Wolves are recovering (in the Northern Rocky States) at a phenomenal rate, a rate unheard of in wildlife. This growth rate is unprecedented and to experience the return of an apex predator in our lifetime is exciting.” But are wolves retuning so that they can again be systematically and inhumanely eradicated, as they were almost seventy years ago?

Details from the recent aerial gunning of the Huckleberry pack’s breeding female were slow to come. WDFW’s initial goal was to gun from a helicopter, again using USDA approved Wildlife Services, up to four members of the pack thereby reducing their numbers and lowering the pack’s food requirements. This could also, they hoped, break the offending male’s cycle of sheep depredation.

Dashiell’s sheep, for which this wolf had been found to have acquired a taste, were being irresponsibly ranged on a rugged and sprawling timber company allotment for mere pennies per. Allow unprotected sheep to run around in the woods in known wolf country… what else would one expect? Wolves find sheep to be delicious and easy prey.

But the rancher and again WDFW cried wolf, saying that there had been in place an active range rider with guard dogs on the scene and that neither had been an effective means of deterrence. It later surfaced that Dashiell’s range rider had quit over a month prior to the incidents and that the added protection of range riders had not occurred until August 20th (the Huckleberry wolf was shot on the 23rd). Frequent nocturnal human presence was also added but not until after the kill order was already in place.

It was simply a matter of far too little, far too late.

The Wildlife Services sharpshooter went up in the chopper over a three-day period, experiencing poor visibility conditions and unable to spot wolves for the first two days. On the third day the shooter finally spotted a lone, black wolf under the craft and shot her dead. BLAM! It was day three of a very expensive undertaking and a wolf needed to die.

Prior to shooting the lone, black, nearly 70 pound wolf (reports of 66lbs were the results of post-mortem weighing) WDFW made statements that they did not wish to shoot the breeding pair nor the collared male. To this end WDFW vowed to only shoot when multiple wolves were under the chopper to use for size comparison and to not shoot black wolves as the collared male is black. They would shoot smaller wolves: two-year olds and pups. And while the breeding female was not a monster in size, 70 pounds is not small especially if you have other wolves spotted for size comparison.

But in the end, the only instructions from WDFW to the sharpshooter were that if the opportunity to sort existed, to try and not remove the collared male. “You know going into it you get what you get,” said the guy I talked to from WDFW.

It took me weeks and numerous phone calls to several WDFW contacts to find out what had been the color of the breeding female. In an earlier interview, Ware (WDFW) had told me he thought she was gray, not white or black, but your standard gray. The others I spoke with knew her weight but not her color. I finally got a hold of the report from the wildlife veterinarian who conducted the necropsy on the dead wolf for WDFW.

The vet confirmed that the pups would have been about four months old at the time of her death, weighing about forty pounds: far from almost full grown as I had been told earlier by WDFW, and far smaller than their almost 70 pound mother if one wished to use them for size comparison.

When asked, the vet said that the breeding female had been shot through the chest and had likely “bled out quickly.” She had been shot with buckshot which is bigger than bb sized pellets and scatters like shotgun powder.

Her postmortem condition was “Poor” because she had been frozen, taking two days to thaw with the first tissues to thaw beginning to rot early on (the vet had been out of area at the time of the killing and so freezing the breeding female’s body had become necessary).

Her stomach was empty -EMPTY- at the time of her death; she hadn’t eaten in 24-48 hours, not sheep, not anything. Had she ever eaten sheep? Truly, we will never know. It is obvious, however, that the non-lethal aversion activity and maybe even the noise of the chopper’s flights, was working days before she was shot; apparently this was so disruptive she stopped eating all together. But again, a wolf needed to die …

Wildlife Services were out in Washington again recently, this time killing coyotes on Vashon Island, coyotes who had also discovered that sheep are delicious and easy prey. Sheep that had been shipped up from Oregon to the Island for the Vashon Sheepdog Classic. Sheep grazing in an unfenced field and ironically enough, without the protection of guard dogs. The dead sheep were not removed and the coyotes came back for those the very next day. No surprise!

And now three coyote’s howls have been silenced forever.

Do not forget and do not remain silent. Do not become accustomed to images of dead wolves as some Conservation Nothing organizations would prefer of you. Do not sit idly by while heartless humans and greedy, weak government officials cry “off with their heads” to apex predators or to any wildlife.

Take action! Make noise! Never compromise! Do not let Them silence the howl!


Photo: Courtesy WDFW Lookout Pack yearling 2008

Posted in: Wolf Wars, Washington Wolves, gray wolf

Tags: Don’t Silence the Howl, WDFW, Huckleberry Pack

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19 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. OK Anonymous, good work putting the recent WA kill fiascos together for us!

    I do not want to put ideas into the heads of wolf-killers (turns out by the way that those who wish to kill wolves are far more fearful people than are norm, even in this modern USA. When I see the actual statistics on this self-reporting of their quivering humps lying abed thinking about how their house is going to get huffed and puffed down, I will broadcast it.), but the states’ “management” by public hunting and trapping of wolves, is so genetically impoverishing them, that biologists are beginning to understand (not Mech, though, and he is still actively supporting such activities) that wolves are in increasing danger of inbreeding problems, not to mention that without sufficient genetic diversity, they are also far, far more susceptible to catastrophic depopulation by disease, which is an issue in this fast heating climate.

    Essentially it is what I’ve been saying for several years – that keeping wolf populations artificially low, is re-endangering them, even though old biologists looking only at high reproductive rates of the recently reintroduced wolves, felt very UNscientifically that low recovery goals could be set, compromising and placating wolf-fearers/haters.

    While more recent biologists have had better educations and greater common sense, the originally tiny USFWS recovery goals are still in place, thus allowing corrupt politicians and equally corrupt (as you point out of WDFW’s Phil Anderson) wildlife “managing” agencies to press for killing down to those now-discredited numbers at which they would be relisted under Federal ESA.

    We live in continuing evil times, where humans continue electing corruptly evil persons to positions of power. This is the issue for each living wolf.

    Just a note or two:
    Montana manages wolves expressly to keep them at a level just above relisting; this information is public knowledge on FWP website, although their “wolf specialist” Kent Laudon , denies it.
    Montana as we know has a severe anti-wolf policy at the same time as having doe and FAWN hunting season on the diminishing Mule Deer populations.
    As shown since 1975 in Jasper NP study, elk (wapiti) numbers do not fluctuate in response to wolf presence. Idaho, Montana, and I believe, WY, all have increasing elk herds (except in the Lolo region of Clearwater NF in ID, where late successional forest growth is the main factor in elk diminution).
    The popular cry of wolf-fearers (barricaded in their beds, with their Rugers and AR-15s all around them) that Canada is full of wolves (this is at the root of trying to reinterpret ESA so it would not generate recovery effort, by pretending that Canada wolves will suffice for the species and thus they are not endangered), also turns out to be false.
    Very heavy gunning down of wolves occurs everywhere in Canada (without much oversight at all) wolves are not specifically protected, as in Jasper, Banff, and the rather tiny Waterton Lakes Park adjacent to MT’s Glacier. WOlves are at high risk in Canada, although as one goes North into NWT, Nunavut, Northeast Sask, there are less white folks,so less Eurokill goes on . Wherever there are too many roads, anywhere, wolves are at risk. This is how Minnesota’s wolves could be so hard hit in a couple years, losing up to 1/3 of their previously stable population.

    The answer is to allow wolves to reproduce to their ecological carrying capacity, without human interfeerence. Their reproducitno will follow a sigmoid curve, leveling off. At that ideal time, they will rise and fall with prey levels, without human persecution, exploitation, or interference.


  2. OOPS!. I would like to edit my comment, but cannot:

    It is Wyoming that has the doe and fawn killing seasons,along with significant road kill, diminishing the Mule Deer population, not Montana.


    • Fawn killing season for mule deer? But look at the outrage (and road rage!) of wolf haters about wolves taking deer and elk calves. It would be comic if it wasn’t so tragic.


  3. When human beings start understanding, believing, and accepting that we are the problem, then these horrors against all wolves and ALL animals, on land and in the sea and the air, will finally STOP!


    • I agree chasinglight2,
      I wonder what goes through the minds of Governors and Department of Fish and Wildlife directors, when they sign off on the slaughtering of wolves who are miles away from them. Have they ever visited the area, or have they been “gifted” by ranchers.
      Politics should not come into the preservation of wildlife at all, and the ranchers must take responsibility for their stock.


  4. Her stomach was empty -EMPTY- at the time of her death; she hadn’t eaten in 24-48 hours.

    I’m not surprised that this wolf hadn’t preyed on the unwatched – but the blatant lies are stunning. The herder quits and after a month is not replaced or – here’s a thought – the owner gets his ass in a saddle and goes up to check on his own livestock? But not when he’s got toadies in F&W at his beck and call, I suppose.


  5. Hi Nabeki, I would like to use the first three paragraphs on my website, if you and Anonymous don’t mind. I will link it to Howling for Justice.
    Thank you Allan.


    • Sure Allan, I don’t see a problem with that as long as Anonymous For Wolves gets credit, you can definitely link it back to HFJ.

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,


  6. A wolf pack’s killing success is only about 1 out of 14 attempts. They are not the blood thirsty predator that FWS and the evil governors of Idaho, Wyoming, Minnesota,etc., portray them to be. These are lies, all lies that they spew for political reasons and the public is swallowing these lies hook, line and sinker.

    The Center for Biological Diversity suggested that we write to the different newspapers in these states. All the newspapers we can find. Write letters of protests, letters of facts, letters that cry out letting them know that America is watching them and they are not winning any popularity contests with their politically blood soaked money. I’ve written to several editors of several papers. My emails for once were not rejected and returned to me.

    (At the top or each list it does give you all the states which if you click on you will see the newspapers in that state…or below are the states on the major hit list)

    List of major newspapers to hit:







  7. Not again!!!! Omg I cant believe this would happen, Another wolf pack gone?!!! WHAT?! 😥 Noo!!! How many wolves have we Let get shot down HMMMM??!!!! I Have some serious, thoughts about this! Wolves can not get accused NO NEVER Will a wolf get accused for doing something, and A wolf pack, Not a alone wolf?! a entire wolf pack getting accused, and even a lone wolf getting accused is HORRIBLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I cant let this happen.. its making me depressed thinking about this guys, we seriously need to do something.. right now.. #HowlingForJustice #PrayingRightNow #StayStrongWolves #Howl.


  8. What can I do? Please advise. Thanks.


  9. urgh, how do you help an animal if it’s so far away, I did a donation project for wolves, I have donated before to them, but I live in a country that doesn’t even have wolves anymore sadly, it’s sad to see how wolves have to suffer there making me wonder what the hell is in this wildlife management, shooting the wrong wolf I mean come on! it’s depressing how hard wolves are having to face people , it’s jsut sad and sick… In my country were no wolves are living, wolves are stil being demonized. From the moment the people thought wolves were gonna return to my country, there was a panic, people accusing wolves will kill at the cattle etc, but also if thinks with wolves happen in other countries they demonize it here, like i think it was idaho were a privat zoo owner released all his animals, in our news papers the title was, wolves on the run =_=

    urgh wish more could be done for them


  10. Reblogged this on Mind Chatter and commented:
    Read the whole post. Again…irresponsibility.


  11. What are you people doing?? Why are the facts not given straight and you only think to kill and destroy is the only answer!! This is sad, sadistic and unforgivable ! How do you sleep at night full of blood due to hate, ignorance and greed ! Wolves and people can co-exist and are essential !! Why can’t this be seen and not feared? Are we that lazy and paid so we’ll that we close our eyes to senseless, horrific killing??? This needs to stop!!!! Please stop and help co-exist!!!


  12. Reblogged this on Exposing the Big Game.


  13. Thanks for the reminder to keep howling for animal justice.


    • Keep howling neweganllorrell!

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,


  14. Dear Anonymous for Wolves; Thank you for tracking down the details of this sad scenario. I would like you to send this article to Governor Inslee. Were you aware that the rancher involved, Dave Dashiell, is an alternate member of the Washington Fish and Wildlife’s Wolf Advisory Group? He should be fully aware of non-lethal management strategies. I consider this an extreme conflict of interests. Director Anderson is reportedly retiring soon. Hopefully, a more environmentally friendly individual will come on board.


  15. We must continue to make noise and do all we can to never silence the howl!!!

    Thank you Nabeki for all your information, dedication and love for these beautiful wolves.



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