Call of the wild

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Alex MacDonald, Apr 17, 2013.

  1. Alex MacDonald Dr. of Doomology

    Posts: 3,297
    Haus Alpenrosa, Lederhosenland
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    I DO have experience with wolves, having encountered them more than once both in the lower 48 and elsewhere. Singularly, they aren't much of an issue, but pack them up, get them hungry, and they're bad news with a decent ability to solve problems and cooperate. They also can mate with Eastern Coyotes, producing a hybrid. These hybrids were implicated in the attack and killing of a young Canadian singer two years ago in Ontario. They've also attacked and killed people in Alaska.
  2. Richard Olmstead BigDog

    Posts: 2,479
    Seattle, WA
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    Alex, I don't think anyone who studies the problem of invasive species would accept your definition. Local extirpation is not the same as extinction. A relatively few generations does not provide time for the ecosystem to evolve sufficiently for the returning species to have the same relative role as an introduced alien species might. Reintroduction is an ecological management tool used for many species in many habitats and doesn't even approach the definition of 'invasion.'

    As an aside, your estimation in an earlier post of 1-year generation times for wolves is a significant underestimation; age to potential first reproduction (ca. 2 years in female wolves) doesn't equal generation time. That is a calculation that entails age of parents, clutch size, etc., and pack animals like wolves, where dominant individuals produce most of the offspring for many years, means that wolves probably have effective generation times of 4-5 years or more. Similarly, for animals like elk, which exhibit dominant male mating with harems of cows, the generation time is probably somewhere in the vicinity of 5 years +/- (cows can't calf before age 2 and bulls rarely achieve dominance until age 3-4 years and may maintain that dominance for 5-8 years). So, the time in generations, since wolves were extirpated in most of the western US, is probably no more than ca. 20 wolf or elk generations. Not enough to register any evolutionarily significant change. That's why elk behavior has reverted so quickly to be like what it was before wolves were extirpated.

    The benefit to the rest of the ecosystem's health, everything from vegetation recovery, stream ecology, and increasing populations of raptors, of the return of a keystone species, in this case, the wolf, is a tremendous boon to western ecosystems (GAT, if you're reading, this is probably the best answer to your question of the benefit resulting from the return of wolves).

    Dick
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  3. Vladimir Steblina Retired Forester...now fishing instead of working

    Posts: 724
    Wenatchee, WA
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    Well, that's a good thing. I am tired of feeding expensive cats to coyotes around here. We have started picking up "lost/found" cats since they are much cheaper.

    If wolves wipe out coyotes, what's the deal on dogs??

    Hey, those mule hunting clothes look good. Those bibs in particular.
    Krusty likes this.
  4. Krusty Active Member

    Posts: 904
    Spokane, WA
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    I live immediately adjacent to Riverside State Park...there's a six foot fence in my back yard, and I see coyotes most every night...in a stare-down with my two cattle dogs. There's a lightpost down the street that always has lost pet signs on it. Outside cats don't last long....I've found cat haunches and collars out there.
  5. SteveA Gnu to the board

    Posts: 279
    Western WA
    Ratings: +32 / 0
    Looks like wolves in small numbers may have been here all along. Additionally, wolves have not been introduced into WA state. They have been migrating here of their own volition, suggesting that the habitat is naturally supportive. Read on to learn of the numerous (i.e. both of them) wolf-caused human fatalities in the last 60 years.

    " Wolves were once common throughout most of Washington, but declined rapidly from being aggressively killed during the expansion of ranching and farming between 1850 and 1900. Wolves were eliminated as a breeding species from the state by the 1930s, although infrequent reports of animals continued in the following decades, suggesting that small numbers of individuals continued to disperse into Washington from neighboring states and British Columbia."

    http://wdfw.wa.gov/conservation/gray_wolf/

    Sent from my KFTT using Tapatalk HD
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  6. Freestone Not to be confused with freestoneangler

    Posts: 2,323
    .
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    In 1975, a successful wolf hunt was organized after a rancher near Mansfield, WA (Jameson & Grimes Lake area) lost some cattle. The 110 lb wolf was found and shot and it stirred up a shit storm. Two guys stood trial for transporting and dumping the carcass in BC.
  7. shotgunner Anywhere ~ Anytime

    Posts: 478
    45th Parallel NW Michigan
    Ratings: +23 / 1
    Same stance was taken in my home state of MI. Supposedly 5 crossed Lake Superiors ice from Isle Royal ..and that was their new era foot hold.

    Maye it's true / maybe not.. but there can be no argument about the thousands of man hours, State & Federal, that were invested into them [read 'baby-sat'] Doubtfull they'd have ever survived, pro-created, and flourish with out it.
  8. GAT Active Member

    Posts: 3,947
    Willamette Valley, OR
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    The wolves in Oregon were not reintroduced by design... they arrived here from Idaho... where they were reintroduced by design.

    Wolves have no concept of borders, national or state.
  9. Roper Idiot Savant

    Posts: 4,276
    Glenraven Ranch
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    I just got back from 4 days of no bandwidth and found four pages of happy horse-pucky about this. Tim, congratulations, you're my new hero. Damned if you didn't hit the nail on the head with this statement. My sentiments exactly...!
  10. bennysbuddy the sultan of swing

    Posts: 2,218
    m-ville
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    Well, that's a good thing. I am tired of feeding expensive cats to coyotes around here. We have started picking up "lost/found" cats since they are much cheaper.

    I wish the coyotes around my place would eat the cat that shits in my garden and sits on my trucks hood every nite.
  11. Vladimir Steblina Retired Forester...now fishing instead of working

    Posts: 724
    Wenatchee, WA
    Ratings: +236 / 0
    In our case, cats are working animals. They are there to eat mice and rats.

    If your problem is a cat that "defecates" in your garden......life is good.
  12. bennysbuddy the sultan of swing

    Posts: 2,218
    m-ville
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    I have no problem, just wish that the coyote that I see chaseing field mice and voles would develop a taste for the auto sitting felines in my area
  13. Mingo the Menehune stole my beer

    Posts: 2,626
    Happy Hour, WA
    Ratings: +372 / 1
    Let's hire the Dog Whisperer to tell the wolves that poachers taste like chicken.
    Alex MacDonald likes this.
  14. KerryS Ignored Member

    Posts: 6,676
    Sedro Woolley, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +1,726 / 0
    Get a paint ball gun. Cats don't like getting hit by them and they hate getting marked by the paint. After you "paint" a couple of them they won't show their face around your place again. Nothing works better on cats than embarrassing them in front of their peers and paint balling cats is a blast.
  15. Alosa Active Member

    Posts: 333
    Seattle
    Ratings: +140 / 1
    As a fisheries biologist who works with invasive species, all I have to say is "BINGO!"
    Richard Olmstead likes this.
  16. Trustfunder Active Member

    Posts: 169
    rock creek
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    Northern Pike minnows aka squaw fish in the Columbia are as invasive as wolves in the NW, but the deal with the Pike minnow is they have an unlimited harvest, wolves get special protection from "those who know best". In fact we pay to harvest a native fish because of it's impact on salmon smolt to a fishery A pike minnow, like the wolf is doing what it was designed to do..eat, I don't think they have a preference as to what they eat. The difference is one is a nuisance (pike minnow) and one is perceived to enhance the wilderness experience (wolf).

    The issue at hand is there's not one square foot of this country in the lower 48 that doesn't have a modern human imprint, so the theory of keeping wolves here for an enhanced natural experience is a state of mind and what I find asinine. In my opinion, why should a northern pike minnow who is native to the NW be eradicated from it's native water to preserve salmon but a re-introduced wolf eating native game herds that were preserved by several generations of hunters be welcomed? Oxymoron? If you disagree, get out a map and count how many wolf wintering ranges that are paid for by wolf supporters... keep counting.

    Media has as much if not more to do with this situation to shape peoples minds about wolves. Just today there was an article about an 18yr old bull elk in Yellowstone that got killed by a pack of wolves. The biologist or idealist would say, see wolves have no impact on elk because he lived for 18yrs among wolves. The realist would say the only way that bull elk lived that long is because he lived in and around Mammoth Hot Springs where people are present year around. I'll leave that to the biologist here.

    What I do know to be true is 16,500 elk from the Yellowstone herd didn't have the ancesterol gene to defend themselves from the introduction of wolves, perhaps the smart elk moved to Gardiner or Mammoth to take up residence. What I believe is if you feed a tank full of Northern Pike Minnows salmon smolt is they're going to eat and eat good for a short time... then what do they eat?
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  17. ribka Active Member

    Posts: 1,419
    E WA
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    I just ran into a small pack of wolves in the upper part of the Manastash this past weekend.

    I have brought up the pike minnow/ wolf analogy in the past.
    If it does not individually impact people (non hunting fly fisherman) they do not care.

    Would like to see the reaction if WA WDFW started a pike minnow, cormorant, sea lion stocking program here in the state and started shutting down fisheries to strive for a more natural method of fisheries management.
    Alex MacDonald likes this.
  18. Alosa Active Member

    Posts: 333
    Seattle
    Ratings: +140 / 1
    Trustfunder: provide me THE BIOLOGICAL definition of an invasive species, and let's see if wolf fits that definition. This should wrap up the debate rather quickly.

    P.S. Wikipedia doesn't count.

    Aww forget it.....here:

    Non-native species (aka non-indigenous, foreign, exotic, alien, introduced, transplanted, pest, nuisance) - a species, subspecies, or lower taxon introduced outside its normal geographic distribution; includes any part, gametes, seeds, eggs, or propagule of such species that might survive and subsequently reproduce

    Invasive species - a non-native species whose establishment and spread threaten ecosystems, habitats or species with economic and/or environmental harm
  19. bennysbuddy the sultan of swing

    Posts: 2,218
    m-ville
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    lets see, after reading this info, humans are a invasive species and therefore should be eliminated.. (note to self , need to put this on my things to do list)
  20. Ed Call Mumbling Moderator

    Posts: 17,357
    Kitsap Peninsula
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    Pepper spray paintballs? We used to train with them. Rather unpleasant!