Dec. 10, 2007
WOOD RIVER VALLEY FOLKS!
HAILEY WOLF MEETING ON THE
“IDAHO WOLF POPULATION
PLAN” (Wolf Hunt)
MONDAY DEC. 17, 2007 - HAILEY COMMUNITY CAMPUS
5:30-7:00 p.m. IDFG
Presentation on their wolf hunting plan
7:00-9:00 p.m. PUBLIC HEARING WITH BLAINE CO. COMMISSIONERS & STATE
REPRESENTATIVES. You will have 2-3 minutes to speak.
WE NEED A STRONG WOLF SHOWING! WE SUPPORT MAKING BLAINE COUNTY A
“WOLF SAFE ZONE”. BRING YOUR IDEAS.
EVERYONE - PLEASE COMMENT BY DEC. 31, 2007
on Idaho Fish & Game's terrible
wolf hunting plan. The plan's most blatant problems are detailed below.
Please use the information to write a letter, long or short. Pass this
e-mail on to other wolf supporters.
THANK YOU from our wolves and Boulder-White Clouds Council! BWCC is a
501(c)3 Idaho Corporation. Our address is Box 6313, Ketchum, ID 83340.
Otter sees [wolves] as a nuisance that must be culled. Over the past 10
years, Idaho’s wolves have shown a stunning capacity to recover. Over the
next four years, their future rests with Otter -- a troubling prospect”.
(Idaho Statesman 12.21.06)
ALERT - WOLVES
NEED YOUR HELP!
Idaho Dept. of Fish & Game (IDFG) has released its Draft Idaho Wolf
Population Mgt Plan. This is actually a hunting plan that needs serious
revision. It's based on politics, rather than biology, ecology or science,
and assumes most Idahoans would prefer wolves hunted with bullets rather
PLEASE WRITE COMMENTS TO IDFG BY DECEMBER 31, 2007!
The plan is on line at
PHOTO: The Phantom Hill alpha male feeds on a road-killed cow elk
along Highway 75 near Phantom Hill, north of Ketchum in early June 2007.
The "Phantom" pack of six black wolves would be at great risk of
being killed if the proposed Idaho hunting plan is instigated. Photo
by Claudia Fiaschetti. Copyright 2007.
This is a HUNTING PLAN that could remove all but 15 breeding pairs (two
adults and two pups = breeding pair) from Idaho. The plan’s minimum
objective is 104 wolves. Currently there are between 700 and 800 wolves in
the state. And despite what IDFG claims, there’s room for far more wolves
to exist. Only 11 percent of Idahoans buy a hunting license annually. What
about the other 89 percent who would likely rather “shoot” with a camera
than a gun?
Are wolves really eating all the elk? Elk numbers are so high in many
areas that IDFG holds elk “depredation” hunts because of rancher and
farmer complaints. Elk seasons last from Labor Day to December. Idaho has
over 125,000 elk and hunters killed 21,000 in 2005, the 8th largest number
ever. Wolves move elk around, benefiting and healing overused foraging
areas. Only two areas in Idaho are not meeting or exceeding IDFG elk
number objectives and that’s due to habitat issues, not wolves.
Wolves are in for a tough and deadly time in Idaho, MT & WY if delisted
from the Endangered Species Act. The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service’s
delisting decision is expected in February 2008. Wolf advocacy groups will
litigate on the grounds that Delisting as proposed at this time is illegal
and jeopardizes gray wolf survival in the Northern Rockies. Successful
litigation could buy wolves some time until the anti-wolf Bush and Butch
Administrations ride off into the sunset.
POINTS TO MAKE ON THE PROPOSED IDAHO WOLF MGT PLAN:
The hunting plan robs Idahoans of opportunities to see wolves.
one of the main attractions in Yellowstone Park and wolf watching brings
over $60 million into the Yellowstone area economy. Few Idahoans will ever
see a wolf if IDFG’s faulty plan goes into effect. IDFG has thrown a bone
to wolf supporters saying they might consider one or two “wolf viewing
areas” as long as outfitters and ranchers agreed and were paid by
non-government sources for any “losses” caused by wolves.
With that type of thinking, let’s ask IDFG for reimbursement for lost
wildlife viewing because of livestock use or outfitter hunting. Why is
Idaho rushing into a full-scale wolf hunt, while Minnesota with over 3000
wolves, has no wolf hunt? The answer: politics - pressure from public land
livestock grazers, big game outfitters, anti-predator groups and the
Governor, his appointed IDFG commissioners and the legislature..
The Plan fails to advocate for non-lethal methods of keeping wolves and
livestock apart. Wolves can learn to stay away from sheep and cattle using
proven pro-active, non-lethal methods. Because of powerful ranchers and
their ties to Wildlife Services (formerly Animal Damage Control), wolves
are now rarely given a second chance to learn to fear man or stock.
A few ranchers are willing to live with wolves. Others, turn their sheep
and cattle out on top of wolf denning areas and as a result, entire wolf
packs have been killed. There are 1700 ranchers who graze on Idaho’s
public lands with 10% (170) controlling 80% of public land allotments.
There are 1.4 million people who reside in the state. Why should a handful
of ranchers dictate whether wolves live or die? IDFG is supposed to
represent all Idahoans. Please remind them of this as they revise their
Wolf number objectives are absurdly low throughout the 14 state Data
Analysis Units (DAUs) (See Table 6.2). Example: In the 2.3 million acre
Frank Church - River of No Return Wilderness (larger than Yellowstone
Park), IDFG’s objective is for ONE TO FOUR breeding pairs. Minimum wolf
number objective is EIGHT. There are no cattle or sheep in the Frank. But
IDFG cites “ungulate conflict” between wolves and elk. Why? We suspect
it’s big game outfitters who don’t want wolves. Imagine if there was only
one wolf pack in Yellowstone Pack and a total of eight wolves. That’s what
IDFG is proposing for the Frank as their bottom line. Please ask IDFG to
reconsider its wolf number objectives in the Frank and all the DAUs.
Southern Idaho Mountains wolf number objectives - this includes most of
the White Clouds, Boulders, Pioneers, Smokeys and Lost Rivers, over four
million acres. Breeding pair object: ZERO TO FOUR. Minimum wolf number
objective: EIGHT. Why so low? Ranchers who run cows in places like Copper
Basin and the White Clouds, or sheep in the Smokeys and Boulders. Protest
this ridiculously low wolf number for some of the wildest land in America.
Insist that IDFG’s revised plan spells out in detail a proactive,
non-lethal livestock management approach.
Oppose the “harvest” of wolf families. IDFG proposes to sell wolf tags for
$9.75 to anyone and the hunting season will go from Aug. 30 to March 31.
Trapping would also be allowed. Imagine a wolf pack howling in sorrow as
one of their members is tortured painfully in a trap for 72 hours until
the trapper arrives to kill it. IDFG attempts to cover up the killing by
calling it “harvest”. Don’t buy into this gibberish. Spuds are harvested.
Wolves are shot.
IDFG’s plan will allow wolves of all ages to be killed without any regard
to the social structure of a wolf pack. IDFG’s plan is being driven by
ranchers, outfitters, trappers, trophy hunters and fossilized,
1880-thinking politicians who don’t want predators, period. They do not
represent all Idahoans. If a hunting season is ever established, the least
IDFG could do, is start slowly and issue a few tags -- not the wolf
slaughter they are proposing.
WOLVES ARE HIGHLY SOCIALIZED PACK ANIMALS. IDFG says they will manage
wolves and hunt wolves as big game just like mountain lions and black
bears. Yet, there are 3000 lions and 20,000 black bears in Idaho alone.
There’s far fewer wolves. We are not amused that IDFG doesn’t know the
difference between the lives of wolves, bears and lions.
Killing alphas and other adults in a pack and leaving sub adults and pups
on their own, will lead to more conflicts between wolves and livestock.
Yet, the IDFG naively keeps saying their wolf killing plan will reduce
conflict. The hunting season would stop just before denning season in
April. By then, the alpha female may well have lost her entire pack at the
time she needs them most. Then in late August, when pups are just starting
to travel, the hunt begins again. IDFG should be ashamed for proposing
this inhumane wolf hunting plan and needs to be told as much.
How you can help:
Write by December 31, 2007 and protest IDFG’s hunting
plan. Ask IDFG to start over with a plan that represents the interests of
all Idahoans, rather than a minority of ranchers, outfitters and trophy
hunters. Join with Boulder-White Clouds Council and the Wolf Recovery
Foundation in our efforts on educating the public on the value of wolves
to the natural landscape.
HELP WITH OUR EFFORTS TO
KEEP WOLVES ALIVE IN IDAHO.
WHERE TO WRITE
firstname.lastname@example.org (Put “Wolf Plan Comments” in the
subject line). If you have trouble with this address, try sending again.
Mail: IDFG, Wolf Plan Comments, P.O. Box 25, Boise ID 83707
Fax: IDFG, Wolf Plan comments: 208-334-2148 or 208-334-2114
Read the Plan at:
Or pick up a copy at IDFG regional offices. The on-line plan version
is much more detailed.