ACTION ALERT: The Imperiled American Wolf by Predator Defense

Black female wolf 831f Yellowstone National Park_2012 NPS

November 21, 2015

Things have gotten even worse for wolves in Montana and Idaho, since this important video was filmed. Ranchers in Montana can kill up to 100 wolves on their land and wolf kill quotas have all but been eliminated in Montana and Idaho,  during the long wolf hunting seasons. In fact Idaho’s wolf hunt seems to be open somewhere in the state the entire year, which means wolves are harassed and killed right through mating, denning and pup rearing. It’s a national outrage but the public has forgotten Montana and Idaho wolves and have accepted the wolf hunts with very little push back. Howling for Justice, Wolf Warriors and many, many other groups, including Predator Defense fought the wolf hunts tooth and nail, only to have Congress override the courts and permanently delist wolves in Montana and Idaho.

Great Lakes and Wyoming wolves were placed back on the Endangered Species List in December 2014 by US District Court Judge Berman but there is a move underway by the usual suspects,  Sen. Barrasso (Wyoming) and Sen. Ron Johnson (Wisconsin) to make an end run around the court’s ruling. They’ve introduced legislation to delist Wyoming and Great Lakes wolves. Sound familiar? This is the same tactic used in 2011 to permanently delist wolves in Montana and Idaho, by placing a wolf delisting rider/with no judicial review, into a must pass budget bill. Now wolves in Montana and Idaho are subjected to brutal annual hunting and trapping. The ability of wolf advocates to seek redress in the courts has been blocked by the wolf delisting rider. It’s outrageous and this is the same evil trick Barrasso and Johnson are trying to pull with the Great Lakes and Wyoming wolves.

Wolf haters will stop at nothing to see wolves eliminated from the lower 48 once again, that is their ultimate goal.

Please take action and call your US Senators  and say no to any legislation that would remove endangered species protection from wolves in the Great Lakes and Wyoming!!

Call the Capital Switchboard number and ask to speak to your Senators.




Senate bill would drop protections for wolves in 4 states

Nov 12, 2015

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. — Two U.S. senators announced a renewed push Thursday to strip federal protection from gray wolves in the western Great Lakes region and Wyoming — and to prohibit courts from intervening in those states on the embattled predator’s behalf.

Legislation introduced this week would order the Department of the Interior to reissue orders from 2011 and 2012 that dropped wolves in Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Wyoming from the endangered species list.

“After over 30 years of needed protection and professional pack population management, the wolf has made its comeback,” said Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin, who sponsored the measure with fellow Republican John Barrasso of Wyoming. Similar legislation was introduced earlier this year in the House.

Wolves are well-established in the western Great Lakes and Northern Rockies after being shot, poisoned and trapped into near-extermination in the lower 48 states in the last century. Only a remnant pocket in northern Minnesota remained when the species was added to the federal endangered list in 1974.

Altogether, their estimated population now exceeds 5,000.

But animal protection advocates contend the wolves’ situation remains uncertain and have sued repeatedly over more than a decade over federal efforts to remove the shield provided by the Endangered Species Act, which prohibits killing them except in defense of human life.

 Wolves occupy less than 10 percent of their historic range in the lower 48 states, meaning they are far from recovered, said Noah Greenwald, endangered species director for the Center for Biological Diversity.

“Even in the areas where there are wolves, they still face extensive persecution,” Greenwald said.

A federal district judge in September 2014 restored endangered status to wolves in Wyoming. A different judge did likewise for Great Lakes wolves in December, saying the states were not providing adequate safeguards.

The Senate bill would ban courts from overruling the Department of Interior again on the matter. Congress imposed a similar requirement in 2011 to prevent judges from restoring protected status to wolves in Idaho and Montana, the first time lawmakers had directly removed a species from the endangered list.



Video: Courtesy Predator Defense

Photo: Courtesy NPS

Posted in: Wolf Wars, Biodiversity

Tags: Predator Defense, biodiversity, wolf hunting, trophy hunting, wolf persecution, USFWS, Senator Barrasso (Wyoming), Sen. Ron Johnson (Wisconsin), endangered species, wolves need protection, The Imperiled American Wolf. please take action for wolves

Wolves Flourish Where Humans Fear To Tread…

Chernobyl wolf Sergey Gashchak_Chornobyl Center

“A European gray wolf on the Ukrainian side of the Chernobyl exclusion zone.” Sergey Gashchak/Chornobyl Center

Chernobyl, one of the greatest disasters of the modern age, has turned into a haven for wildlife in just thirty years. How ironic, that a place uninhabited for decades, due to a catastrophic radiation spill at a Ukrainian power plant (which was then part of the USSR), is now a flourishing wildlife refuge, particularly for wolves. The explanation: NO HUMANS!

“It’s very likely that wildlife numbers at Chernobyl are much higher than they were before the accident,” a researcher says in a release. “This doesn’t mean radiation is good for wildlife, just that the effects of human habitation, including hunting, farming, and forestry, are a lot worse.”


In the eerie emptiness of Chernobyl’s abandoned towns, wildlife is flourishing

The sound was like nothing Tom Hinton had ever heard before: a chorus of baleful wolf howls, long and loud and coming from seemingly every direction in the darkness. The predators yipped and chirped and crooned to one another for what seemed like forever, sending a shiver of awe and intuitive fear down Hinton’s spine.

“It was a primordial experience,” he said, something most of humanity hasn’t felt for tens of thousands of years. “That dates back to when humans were prey.”

It was only possible because of where Hinton was standing, a remote area along the Belarus-Ukraine border that’s been uninhabited by humans for decades.

They all left in the wake of a very different sound nearly 30 years earlier: the massive explosion of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in 1986, which left dozens dead and drove more than 100,000 people from their homes across a 1,600-square-mile swath of Ukraine and Belarus. These days, abandoned apartment complexes are nothing more than crumbled concrete wrecks. Vines crawl up the decaying walls of old farmhouses and break unintended skylights into their roofs. No one lives in the post-apocalyptic setting.

No one human, that is. Wildlife populations there – shaggy-haired wild boar, long-legged elk, the howling choruses of wolves that so captivated Hinton last August – are flourishing.

“It shows I think that how much damage we do,” said fellow co-author Jim Smith, an environmental science professor at the University of Portsmouth. “It’s kind of obvious but our everyday activities associated with being in a place are what damages the environment.”

“Not that radiation isn’t bad,” he added, “but what people do when they’re there is so much worse.”

The study is the first real census of wild animals in the exclusion zone. It relies on a decades worth of helicopter observations in the years right after the disaster, and three winters of scientists carefully counting animal tracks on foot between 2008 and 2010 in the Belarusian section of the zone.

Though animal numbers were low when scientists first started counting them in 1987 (because no data was taken before the disaster, they can’t tell to what degree the populations were hurt by the explosion), they rapidly rose once humans left the region. Brown bears and rare European lynx – predatory cats the size of a Great Dane with tufted ears and glimmering gold eyes – quickly appeared in the forests, even though they hadn’t been seen for decades before the accident. Wild boar took up residence in abandoned buildings. Forests replaced humans in the villages’ empty streets.

Within 10 years, every animal population in the exclusion zone had at least doubled. At the same time, the kinds of species that were flourishing in the exclusion zone were vanishing from other parts of the former Soviet Union, likely due to increased hunting, poorer wildlife management and other economic changes.

By 2010, the last year of the on-foot census, the populations for most species were as large as in any of Belarus’ four national parks. For one species, the wolves, the population was seven times bigger.

This indicates to researchers that chronic exposure to radiation from the explosion has had no impact on overall mammal populations. Whatever fallout may have come from the initial explosion was completely offset by the benefits of life without humans.

This doesn’t mean that the zone isn’t dangerous, Hinton stressed. He and his colleagues didn’t study the individual- and molecular-level damage caused by lingering contamination. While whole populations aren’t dying out, individual animals might be getting sick. And surveys have shown that the soil in areas close to the reactor site still exude radiation.

But, “the environment is very resilient,” Hinton said.

The presence of wolves is particularly telling. As apex predators, they are a sign of the health of the entire ecosystem – if they’re flourishing, that means that every other level of species, from elk and deer on down to insects and plants, must also be healthy.

Another team of researchers is currently using camera traps to count wildlife on the Ukrainian side of the exclusion zone. Nick Beresford, a radioecologist at the National Environment Research Council in the UK, said that their work won’t be done until the end of the year, but he expects to reach the same conclusions as those working in Belarus.

Beresford praised the Current Biology study and its findings: “People have said before that wildlife in the zone is flourishing, but those accounts were rightly criticized as anecdotal,” he said. “This is the first study to really back it up with science.”

Walking around the exclusion zone is like being in “a national park without the people,” Hinton said. The forests are nearly pristine, the animals abundant. What relics of human presence do remain have been almost entirely reclaimed by nature.

Even the Soviet city of Pripyat in Ukraine, which once housed tens of thousands of workers at the Chernobyl plant, has been subsumed by trees.

“When I was there 15 years ago, it looked like a city with some trees growing in it,” recalled Smith. “Now it looks like a forest with some buildings in it.”

For Hinton, who is currently studying the effects of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan, the impact is both astounding and sobering.

“It’s an amazing experience from a wildlife perspective, but it’s also a sad experience because you see homes that have been abandoned and you imagine the people’s lives that have been disturbed,” he said. “It’s sad to see the houses and the cars and the baseball bats and you envision the life that people had to drop and leave. But you also see wild boar running around and you don’t see that as soon as you leave the zone.”


Wolves Have Taken Over Chernobyl


By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff

Posted Oct 6, 2015 7:32 AM CDT

Wolves Have Taken Over Chernobyl Valeriy Yurko/T.G. Deryabina

“Wolf populations are seven times greater near Chernobyl than in nearby uncontaminated nature reserves.   (Valeriy Yurko/T.G. Deryabina)”


Radioactive Wolves


Top Photo: Courtesy  Sergey Gashchak/Chornobyl Center

Bottom Photo: Courtesy Valeriy Yurko/T.G. Deryabina

Video: Courtesy Youtube

Posted in: gray wolf, biodiversity

Tags: Chernobyl, wolves flourish in Chernobyl, radiation, Ukraine, biodiversity

“For the animal shall not be measured by man…Henry Beston


“We need another and a wiser and perhaps a more mystical concept of animals. Remote from universal nature and living by complicated artifice, man in civilization surveys the creature through the glass of his knowledge and sees thereby a feather magnified and the whole image in distortion. We patronize them for their incompleteness, for their tragic fate for having taken form so far below ourselves. And therein do we err. For the animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours, they move finished and complete, gifted with the extension of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren, they are not underlings: they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendour and travail of the earth.”

Henry Beston 1925

Wolf_All Life Matters pinterest


Bottom Photo: Courtesy Pinterest

Posted in: Biodiversity

Tags: Animal lives matter, biodiversity, Henry Beston

Published in: on October 5, 2015 at 6:49 pm  Comments (20)  
Tags: , ,

Wolves ARE The True Lords Of Nature!

July 6, 2015

It’s important to remember why we need wolves!

This was one of my early posts from the fall of 2009. Wolves were being hunted in Idaho and Montana for the first time since their near extermination in the lower 48.


October 29, 2009

Wolves effect their surroundings and bring life to the lands they inhabit. For sixty years elk browsed the meadows of the North Fork of the Flathead, in Montana. Their adversary, canis lupus, who had chased them through time, was gone, hunted to extinction in the West.

Then the wolf came home to it’s native habitat and dispersed the elk. This brought back the aspen and willow, young shoots no longer trampled under the complacent elk’s hooves. With the aspen came the songbirds and other wildlife.

Once more the circle was complete with the return of the great canine, the wolf.

 “Aspen ecosystems are considered some of the finest and richest songbird habitat on the continent, second only to river-bottom riparian zones. Remove the wolf, and you remove the songbirds. Remove the songbirds, and the bugs move in. Everything changes, top to bottom, right down to the dirt”…..Cristina Eisenberg,  Oregon State University researcher


Wolves Increase Biodiversity And Greatly Benefit The Ecosystems They Inhabit

Matt Skoglund Wildlife Advocate, Livingston, Montana

Posted October 26, 2009 in Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

Wolves matter.

They lead to more songbirds.  Better trout habitat.  More game birds.  Less insects.  Better soil.  Fewer coyotes.  Wilder elk.  More aspen trees.

Wolves, in essence, are key to a healthy landscape.

So says biologist Christina Eisenberg in a fascinating Missoulian article on the effect of wolves — and their absence — on an ecosystem.

Eisenberg has been studying the top-to-bottom effect of wolves — called a “trophic cascade” — in Glacier National Park for years.  She’s also been researching ecosystems near St. Mary’s, Montana, and in Waterton Lakes National Park in Alberta, Canada.

“Each study site is about the same size, and each has a similarly large elk population, native to an aspen-based winter range, and each has the same general density of cougars and bears.”  The difference between the sites is the number of resident wolves:  St. Mary’s has none, Waterton some, and Glacier many.

Her findings on the much heated debate over wolves and elk mirror what others have found:  there are plenty of elk in the Northern Rockies, but the return of wolves has made the elk behave again like wild elk:

The North Fork, Eisenberg said, is “full of wolves,” and has been for 20 years now.  It’s also full of elk – as many as 14 elk per square kilometer in this meadow, where the wolf den site is located.  Elk scat litters the ground not 20 yards from the den.

Clearly, the wolves aren’t eating all the elk.  But aside from the tracks and the scat and the bones and the antlers, there are no elk to be seen.

“They’ve totally changed their behavior,” Eisenberg said.  “For 60 years we’ve become used to complacent elk.  These elk aren’t complacent.  They’re on high alert.”

From a browse standpoint, that means elk eat a bit and move on, eat a bit and move on, never standing in one place long enough to eat a tree down to its roots.  And from a human standpoint, it means hunters see far fewer elk even as state wildlife officials insist Montana has more deer and elk than it’s had for years.


Hunters, of course, prefer elk that aren’t quite so wily, but trophic cascades work both ways in wildlife management.  Remove the wolves, and elk are easier to find.  But then coyote populations explode, eating their way through the local game-bird population.  Enhance one hunting opportunity, and you affect another.

And from a bigger viewpoint than just elk, Eisenberg has found that wolves increase biodiversity and greatly benefit the overall health of the areas they inhabit:

Remove the wolves, she said, and you lose the birds.

Remove the wolves, she said, and the coyotes fill the niche.  The coyotes eat the ground squirrels, and so the meadows don’t get “plowed,” and soil productivity declines.

Remove the wolves, she said, and the deer eat the river-bottom willows, and the bull trout lose both their shade and their food, as insects no longer fall from overhanging brush.

Remove the wolves, she said, “and everything changes.”

Why is this so noteworthy?

Because the places with greatest biodiversity are the places most resilient, most able to adapt to, say, changing climate.

And Eisenberg wisely thinks her — and others’ — findings should guide wolf management.

Wolf populations aren’t recovered with 12 breeding pairs, or 15, or 20, Eisenberg said.  They’re recovered when there are enough wolves and other top-end predators to maximize biodiversity.  

Her findings are important, and they’re timely, as wolves are being gunned down all over Idaho and Montana right now.

In her research and in this article, Eisenberg simply and unequivocally points out a critical fact that’s been lost in the recent debate over the wolf hunts:

Wolves matter.


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



Photo: First People

Photo: wolf wallpaper

Posted in: biodiversity, wolf recovery, gray wolf,  Glacier National Park

Tags: wolf recovery, gray wolf,  biodiversity

OR-7 A Daddy Again?

or-7-pups 2014

OR-7 Pups 2014

It looks like our favorite, famous wolf and his mate may have new pups. This is exciting news!


Famous gray wolf in Oregon may have more puppies

By Shelby Sebens

 PORTLAND, Ore. (Reuters) – A gray wolf who signaled the comeback of his species in Oregon and California might be welcoming some new pups to his pack, wildlife biologists said on Wednesday.

The wolf, known as OR-7 because he was the seventh of his species ever collared in Oregon with a tracking device, is showing signs he may have more offspring after siring three pups last year, two of which officials know to have survived.

“We think they’re denning again. Just the behavior we’re seeing,” said John Stephenson, wolf coordinator for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services in Oregon. “OR-7 is returning to a same area repeatedly.”

OR-7 made headlines in late 2011 when he turned up in northern California, becoming the first wild specimen confirmed in the Golden state for 87 years.

He was known to have been wandering between California and Oregon until last year when he met a mate and sired puppies.

Wildlife officials said trail camera photos show he could be mating with the same black female wolf.

“It’s not surprising,” Stephenson said. “Wolves do tend to attempt to reproduce each year. We expected them to den again.”

Although the wolf’s collar lost its GPS signal, it still produces a radio signal which can be tracked, said Michelle Dennehy, spokeswoman for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, adding that the state plans to try and re-collar OR-7.

Dennehy confirmed the wolves appear to be denning, but said officials will not know for certain until they can safely check later this summer.

The potential for new pups comes as the number of Oregon wolves rises. At the end of 2014, when officials last counted, there were 77 wolves in the state.

“So far the trend in Oregon is the population has been growing steadily and rapidly,” Stephenson said.

Gray wolves, native to Oregon but wiped out in the state by an eradication campaign during the early 20th century, first returned in 2008.

The state’s Fish and Wildlife Commission is considering easing state Endangered Species Act protections for the wolves in central and eastern Oregon, where most wolves live.

Federal law would continue to restrict hunting of the wolves in western Oregon.

Many of OR-7’s fans will be waiting eagerly to know if he has in fact become a father again.

“OR-7 is a legend,” Stephenson said.


Photo: Courtesy Oregon Live

Posted in: Oregon wolves, OR7

Tags: OR7 new pups?, Oregon wolves, biodiversity, wolf recovery

Published in: on May 21, 2015 at 12:31 pm  Comments (16)  
Tags: , , ,

British Columbia’s Wolves Need Your Support

Pup Future Wolf Awareness Inc

British Columbia’s wolves need our help. Wolf persecution knows no boundaries. 

British Columbia plans to kill wolves for the next five years, under the guise of boosting caribou numbers.  Sound familiar? I guess they forgot habitat loss is the single biggest contributor to caribou decline. But of course now that caribou numbers are low, they want to blame and kill the wolves. Typical reactionary thinking. Man does the damage and wolves pay the price.

Please visit to learn more.

Are you aware that

2014 Wolf Plan-poster pup2 wolfawarenessIncorg



Twitter:  @wolfawareness


BC’s Wolf Killing Plan on Pause, for Now

This year’s cull wraps up short of target, though ‘intent is the program will continue,’ minister says.

By Andrew MacLeod, 22 Apr 2015,

The British Columbia government has temporarily stopped killing wolves, and conservationists are pushing to make the pause permanent.

“I don’t want people thinking it’s over,” said Sadie Parr, the director of the non-profit company Wolf Awareness Inc. in Golden, noting the B.C. government plans to continue to kill wolves over the next five years.


Photos: Courtesy

Posted in: gray wolf, Canadian wolves, biodiversity

Tags: biodiversity, British Columbia wolf persecution,, support Canadian wolves, stop the wolf killing, British Columbia’s bad wolf management plan

Ode To Magnificence by Louis du Toit

(Louise du Toit — 02-24-2012)

I am wolf

I am
the true spirit
of nature
a perfect creation
walking beside you
guiding your senses
to see
the invisible

I am
a predator
the delicate balance
of nature

a sentient being
no more evil or righteous
than any other creature

born with everything
I need to survive

I am
a true survivor
devoted to my family
loyal to my pack
the defender of my territory

has chosen me
as its enemy
lack of knowledge
brought fear
bred hatred
in a dark cloud
of demonic imagination

Like countless
other earthlings
I am shamelessly

My true destination
will only become visible

when humans
discard their
imaginary fear
false legends
phantasmal myths

to seek the truth

Wolves in lamar valley_ Earth Justice

Video: Courtesy Louise Du Toit

Photo: Courtesy Earthjustice

Posted in: Biodiversity, gray wolf

Tags: Ode To Magnificence, Animal Rights, gray wolf, Louise du Toit, biodiversity

Wolf Dad Takes His Hungry Pups For A Stroll With Brown Bears Near By….

“Alpha male wolf plays with and regurgitates food for 4 pups in a high density brown bear (grizzly) feeding area of the Katmai coast, Alaska. filmed by naturalist guide Brad Josephs”

Looks like dad has his hands full with four hungry pups. Watch how he regurgitates food for them as they lick his mouth. They just can’t get enough. He’s one dedicated alpha male and there are brown bears around too.

Alpa male with his pups Katmai Alaska Courtesy Brad Josephs

Wolves are the parents, the mothers, the fathers, the brothers and sisters that we always hoped we could be….Ed Bangs, Former Wolf Recovery Coordinator, USFWS


Video: YouTube Courtesy Brad Josephs

Photo: Screen Grab Courtesy Brad Josephs

Posted in: Coastal gray wolves, Brown Bears,  Biodiversity

Tags: wolf pups, wolf dad feeds pups, Katmai Coast Alaska, Coastal wolves, Coastal brown bears, biodiversity, Brad Josephs

Alaskan Wolves and Grizzlies Fishing for Salmon Side By Side!

This is such a great video, Alaskan wolves and coastal brown bears fishing for salmon together in relative harmony.  Wonderful footage!


Coastal wolf_White Wolf Pack Courtesy Brad JosephCoastal wolf – Courtesy Brad Joseph


Video: YouTube Courtesy Brad Joseph

Photo: White Wolf Pack/Courtesy Brad Joseph

Posted in: Coastal gray wolves, Brown Bears,  Biodiversity

Tags: Coastal wolves, Coastal brown bears, Alaska, salmon fishing, biodiversity, Brad Joseph

Killing Echo: The “Mistaken Identity” Excuse, Part One

Echo Grand-Canyon NPS

Echo (Courtesy NPS)

February 27, 2015

It’s been several months since Echo was shot dead by a coyote “hunter”. Her identity was confirmed by DNA analysis of her recovered scat, since she evaded all attempts of capture, making her one smart little wolf. I think Echo should have been called Miracle because it certainly was a miracle she managed to traverse the kill zone of the Northern Rockies and make it to the Grandest of all Canyons. She was the first wolf to set paw there in 70 years. Unfortunately she was not able to evade a bullet and so what could have been a new chapter in wolf recovery turned out to be a sad tale of loss. And the loss was huge. Echo defied the odds. She defied the USFWS who repeatedly said, no gray wolves in  Grand Canyon National Park. But Echo made it on her own, she didn’t ask permission, she left her natal pack in Wyoming and went searching for a mate. Her presence in The Canyon was history in the making, just as her male counterpart, OR7, made history by becoming the first wolf  to roam California in 90 years!

The Canyon is amazing wolf habitat, mule deer abound but there was only one problem, Echo was the only gray wolf in the park. What’s a wolf to do?  So she left the park and headed north, retracing her steps on her quest to find a mate, instead she found  a man with a gun.

Echo’s tragic story is not new, it’s been  repeated over and over again, ad nauseam. When wolves disperse out of the Northern Rockies or Great lakes they usually end up dead. How many more times will we hear about wandering wolves shot and killed by “coyote hunters”? There is no way in hell wolves will ever be able to reclaim former habitat if every time they attempt to do so, they’re killed. We could point to Oregon and Washington as success stories, Oregon now has 77 wolves.  Yes, wolves are thriving there, with OR7 as the poster wolf for that success but OR7’s story could have gone a completely different way. He made the right choice and dispersed to western Oregon and south to California, where there’s tolerance for wolves. Unfortunately a few of his siblings OR5 and OR9 took different paths and went east to the killing fields of Idaho, where they met grisly deaths.

Oregon and  Washington wolves have been successful because they’re not hunted YET. But Oregon is already in the planning stages of delisting wolves in the eastern part of the state, since Oregon’s wolf
“management” plan is so weak.

Washington, although they have a better long-term “management” plan of 15 successful breeding pairs over three years,  has not been particularly kind to wolves since they returned to the stateThe Lookout Pack, the first wolves confirmed in Washington state in 70 years were decimated by the White family.  I’m sure everyone remembers the disgusting account of Erin White trying to Fedex a bloody wolf pelt . 

“A FedEx agent declined to take the package after seeing what appeared to be blood leaking from it.

When a local police officer and the shipping-store owner discovered an animal pelt inside, they alerted state fish and wildlife agents. Genetic tests of the pelt later confirmed it was a gray wolf and an apparent member of the Washington state wolf pack.”…SeattleTimes

And we can’t forget the Wedge Pack and Huckleberry Pack debacles. Washington’s Teanaway Pack alpha female was poached in 2014, with a significant reward offered. Other wolves have been poached there as well, so all is not peachy for wolves in the Evergreen State,  even though they remain protected by state law in eastern Washington and retain federal and state protection in western Washington. Additionally the Colville and Spokane Tribes in eastern Washington hold wolf hunts on their reservations. The 2014/2015  Spokane tribe wolf hunt has a 6 wolf quota.

Aside from Washington and Oregon where are the dispersing wolves’ success stories? Can anyone name a single successful breeding pair of wolves outside of the Northern Rockies, Great Lakes or Mexican gray wolf territory, in Arizona and New Mexico?  In Missouri,  3 wolves have been killed in the last 13 years using the “coyote excuse”. In Kentucky, where wolves had been absent for 150 years, a wolf was shot dead because of “mistaken coyote identity”. The same thing in Kansas. And now Echo in Utah.

Obviously the “coyote excuse” is very convenient, even though coyotes and wolves look very different. It’s the equivalent of “the dog ate my homework” If you cop to killing a protected wolf, charges may be brought against you, probably just a slap on the wrist but there’s a possibility of fines or losing a hunting license. Using the “coyote excuse” is a get out of jail free card. This is why wolves are struggling to reclaim former habitat, because they walk around with targets on their backs, with little protection. The USFWS wants to put a final nail in their coffin with a national delisting. US Fish and Wildlife Services can’t protect wolves now when they’re listed as endangered, so how on earth can wolf recovery go forward if all federal protection is stripped from them? The message is clear and not subtle,  wolf recovery must be stopped dead in its tracks.

When Echo died it wasn’t just one wolf dying, which is tragic in itself but her demise closed the door on what could have been a new chapter for wolves in the Southwest. The Grand Canyon is perfect wolf habitat,  plenty of prey, mule deer abound, room to roam. Sadly the one thing missing were other wolves and that sealed Echo’s fate. She left the Canyon or was lured back into Utah, where she met her killer.

The Chairman of Arizona Game and Fish opined that Echo may have been deposited in the Grand Canyon by “radicalized environmental monkey wrenching”. In other words, stealth greenies snatched Echo from the Northern Rockies and plopped her in the North Rim of the Canyon, just to “monkey wrench” the USFWS plan to delist wolves nationally. Ummmmkay. Does this have anything to do with Area 51?

Here’s the article:

Wolf appears during controversy: Coincidence?

Robert Mansell 7:46 p.m. MST December 6, 2014

There has been a great deal of interest in the wolf observed on the Kaibab Plateau in Northern Arizona. Many herald this as a wonderful event, and for the first time in 70 years, a wild wolf was in northern Arizona.

There are also some who view this as an example of what I have heard referred to as radicalized environmental monkey wrenching. The reality is that placing an animal that has full protection of the Endangered Species Act in a novel area requires agencies to manage a species that arrived to the area with the help of humans and not by natural dispersal.

Although the truth may never be known, I have had numerous folks call me to question how a wild wolf traveled more than 450 miles from the Northern Rockies to Arizona without having been observed somewhere along the way? Why now when the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is in the process of determining whether or not to delist the gray wolf? Why now when key decisions are being made on the management of the Mexican wolf?

Recently, I got a long look at this animal, and while it looked like a wild wolf, it behaved otherwise.

To be clear, wild animals are known to make wondrous, long-distance movements, and while the arrival of a wolf on the Kaibab Plateau is not impossible, how interesting is it that this happens now when management of wolves in North America is at a critical juncture…..Robert Mansell azcentraldotcom


I can play the speculation, conspiracy game too. What if Echo was lured into Utah? What if the “coyote hunter” knew she was a wolf and shot her anyway? She was a threat after all, a wolf successfully dispersing into new territory? That can’t be allowed now can it? And that must have been a pretty dumb “monkey wrencher” to forget to bring along a male wolf to keep her company.

Echo traveled hundreds of miles, defying the odds, to become the first wolf to set paw in the Grand Canyon since the 1940’s. This remarkable little wolf, just three years old, could have opened a new chapter for wolves reclaiming lost habitat.  She defied the USFWS, who said NO WOLVES IN THE GRAND CANYON! Excuse me if I’m suspicious of Echo’s death. NOTHING connected to wolves is ever straightforward.

RIP Sweet Echo, you were a pioneer for your species, an ambassador, seeking to reclaim the land of your ancestors! May your species continue to follow in your tracks!

“It is nothing short of a tragedy that this wolf’s journey across the west was cut short because she was shot and killed by a coyote hunter (…) This brave and ambitious female gray wolf that made it all the way from Wyoming to the Grand Canyon had already become a symbol of what gray wolf recovery should look like – animals naturally dispersing to find suitable habitat.”….Inquisitrdotcom

Echo Arizona Game and Fish

DNA Confirms Famed Wolf ‘Echo’ Killed By Coyote Hunter In Southern Utah

February 12, 2015


Coming next: Part Two

Killing Echo/Killing Wolves: The “Mistaken Identity” Excuse


Top Photo: Courtesy Echo – NPS

Bottom Photo: Echo – Arizona Game and Fish

Posted in: Wolf Wars, Biodiversity, wolf recovery

Tags: Echo, epic journey, wolf recovery, biodiversity, North Rim Grand Canyon, wolf in the Canyon, senseless death, “coyote excuse”


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