Demonizing Wolves

gray wolf dnr wi.gov

September 19, 2015

Here we go again, a wolf supposedly killed a cow in Washington state, on federal land and it makes headlines but what the media never reports is how well-behaved wolves are and what a non-threat they are to ranching or farming.

In 2010, 51,200 cows died in Oregon from non-predation causes. (NASS 2010). That’s right, FIFTY ONE THOUSAND! This should be front page news, right? When wolves are involved in miniscule livestock losses they make the front pages of local media. So what about those 51,200 cows that weren’t killed by wolves? Where are the headlines?  We hear nothing but this.

Oregon had 1,300,000 cattle at the beginning of 2011. Wolves were accused, specifically the Imnaha pack, of 14 cow losses in 1.5 years. Oregon was ready to kill several members of the Imnaha pack over it, including the alpha male OR4, who is OR7’s father. But no exposure about the thousands and thousands of cows keeling over in Oregon from all manner of things, not wolf related such as:

Digestive problems

Respiratory problems

Metabolic problems

Mastitis

Lameness/injury

Other diseases

Weather related

Calving problems

Poisoning

Theft

(NASS 2010) National Agricultural Statistics Service

Meanwhile in 2009  “federal agents associated with the USDA’s Wildlife Services program killed 114,522 mammalian carnivores (including 480 wolves; 82,097 coyotes; and 477 domestic dogs)…… It spent $121 million that year.”  

In a state like Montana, with around 2.5 million cows, ranchers may lose 50 to 60 THOUSAND cattle  annually to non-predation and on average between 60 to 80 to wolves. That is what we’re talking about here folks. Wolf predation on cattle is so overblown it’s ridiculous. Except the media and wolf haters never miss an opportunity to report on any cow killed by a wolf. What incredible hypocrites.

The press exploits wolves for ratings, pure and simple. They know the fringe wolf haters love to read negative articles about wolves. But consider that wolves aren’t even in the running as a true threat to livestock. Coyotes and domestic dogs are the number 1 and 2 predators of livestock followed by mountain lions, then other predators (bears, bobcats or lynx, foxes, wolves, ravens, eagles, vultures ) Wolf predation on cattle is so low they don’t even have their own category but are lumped in with other predators who do miniscule damage. Non-predation, like respiratory illness, reproductive issues, weather, hell even altitude sickness kill thousands upon thousands of cattle every year but we don’t hear about that. You know why, because it doesn’t fit into the anti-wolf agenda in the West and it doesn’t increase ratings.

In reality wolves are extremely shy animals and would prefer to stay as far away from people as possible. And if wolves do kill a few cows or sheep each year it’s mostly because many ranchers don’t practice sound animal husbandry. They use the Columbus method of ranching,  “Let em loose in the Spring and discover em in the Fall”. Those cattle are out there roaming around in remote wilderness areas, not protected, not watched and usually on public land grazing allotments. Hey ranchers, pen up your cattle and stop blaming wolves if they take a cow now and then because you practice careless ranching. That land belongs to the American people and it’s about time the feds start retiring grazing allotments and allow wolves to roam on public land without having to bump into cattle. Wolves should trump cows on public land anyway.  Yet even with millions of cattle out there for the taking, wolves show incredible restraint and prefer to diet on their natural prey of elk and deer. That’s the kind of self-control they’re capable of but rarely get credit for.

So shame on the press for reporting on every single little misdeed they think wolves have committed when the real truth is the biggest threat to cattle is non-predation and being slaughtered for food.

Here’s a post I did  on the Washington Wedge Pack, who were eventually murdered for this very type of persecution.

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ACTION ALERT: Washington Wedge Wolf Pack Targeted For Death..

September 22, 2012

“State hunters are ramping up their efforts to kill wolves in northern Stevens County, and now don’t plan to stop until they’ve killed off the Wedge Pack.

“The attempt now is to remove the entire pack,” said WDFW wolf policy coordinator Steve Pozzanghera this morning.

The agency is loading up its toolbox for the effort to take out the eight to 11 members of the livestock-depredating group, including tasking more marksmen, trappers and biologists to the area; hunting over not only calf carcasses but roadkilled deer; hunting at all hours with a fuller array of weaponery; bringing in USDA Wildlife Services for “technical assistance” on snaring; and possibly bringing local law enforcement into the hunt.

“If we’re unsuccessful, we will consider aerial gunning,” Pozzanghera adds”

https://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com/tag/columbus-method-of-ranching/

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Photo: Wisconsin DNR

Posted in: gray wolves, Wolf Wars

Tags: Wolf persecution, demonizing wolves, non-predation cattle losses,  poor animal husbandry practices, get cows off public land, Wedge Pack, WDFW

 

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