Washington we have a problem ( wolf attack )

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Tom O'Riley, Oct 10, 2011.

  1. Defenders of Wildlife for one.

    The PRIVATE Turner Endangered Species Fund, while not a "wolf special interest group" is funding biologists in Montana.
  2. Kidwithdog,

    Not a stretch? I hope you're kidding. It's illegal for any USFWS biologist to take bribes, so if your hunch can be proven, bodies will be fired. I used to work for USFWS and can go upstairs and down the hall and ask the USFWS biologists I know if they know of anyone in MT taking bribes, but I'm pretty sure I'd be wasting my time. More likely USFWS biologists are pro-wolf for the same reason they are pro- most every fish and wildlife species. They are biologists, and they have an interest in wildlife conservation and the restoration of functional ecosystems. Agency biologists have no need for political support; their problem occasionally is with political opposition because fish and wildlife conservation interferes with moneyed interests that have bought and paid for political influence, having seen that myself.


    So what? Are they funding USFWS project work? Private interests spend all kinds of money for and against many things, but that's not the same as funding USFWS work. Not all biologists work for USFWS. I was asking for the identity of one or more private interests that supplies funding to USFWS programs because I don't know of any.

  3. You don't have to look far to find photos of rather impressive wolves harvested in the lower 48 (most in Idaho). These are reported to be 170 and 180lbs. Granted not all the Northern/Canadian Gray Wolves in the lower 48 get this big, but, well, these are huge.

  4. I am not sure about the top wold photo you posted, but I am near certain that the lower wolf was shot in the Drayton Valley area of Alberta, as in Canada.
  5. The top one was north Idaho, near Elk city
  6. have talke to a few fellow fishers who hunt the Idaho/Montana area (northern). all have said that deer/elk populations are way down in all areas where wolves have been reported. some of the areas these guys used to hunt are no longer worth the time to go. one area is outside of Macall. salmon river area.
    does make me wonder if what they thought was a good idea, is now out of control?
    sorta like sea lions were no problem for years, and now look at the mess.
  7. bawling:
    But just think of all of the wonderful fishing opportunities once all of the elk and moose are exterminated by the wonderful wolves. Dontcha know they are destroying all of the riparian habitat by the stream, creeks and rivers in MT,WY,ID,OR and WA? Exploding wolf populations are a win win forWashington fly fishermen. Oh and they only kill sick and diseased animals too.:thumb:
  8. This is why we should start harvesting bull trout again. They just keep eating and procreating. Pretty soon there won't be any salmon and steelhead left.
  9. What biologists?
  10. Hunter success is not a good or unbiased measure of animal abundance. One of the first things that happens with wolf reintroduction (and any predator reintroduction for that matter) is an instantaneous change in prey behavior--the prey alter their behavior to reduce the risk of being eaten. This is well known and published on. For elk and deer, this may mean being more cautious and altering where and how they spend their time. If these changes also make them less available to hunters, well you could easily see a reduction in hunter success without any actual change in animal abundance. This of course isn't to say that there truly is no change in abundance, merely that hunter success is not an unbiased or good measure of animal abundance because of the confounding condition described above.
  11. They cant directly fund any one program as that is illegal iirc. Large groups such as the Defenders of Wildlife and the Sierra Club fund partners to the USFWS so long as what the USFWS is doing follows their agenda.
    "Experienced biologist under direct supervision of the USFWS"
  12. I think the Idaho Wolf Hunting season says it all. If it was just a change in habitat usage and not a massive reduction in numbers, why would Idaho allow unlimited harvest of wolves in some units?

    The feds dumped them in and arent managing them. Idaho took it into their own hands and wants them controlled if not gone.
  13. Not sure what your agenda is Tom, but hunters' input, historically has a large correlation to actual wildlife populations. Hunters bias is a factor, but there is a much more higher reliable source for abundance of wildlife... Winter counts of doe/fawn along with Cow/Calf ratios.

    In Idaho....in Zone 10 the number of calves has declined from 2,298 in 1989 to 144 in 2010, or 94 percent. In Zone 12 the number of calves has declined from 856 in 1985 to 38 in 2010, or 96 percent.

    Altering behavior? Come on.. Nice try. LOL
  14. The "damage" done by elk in stream zones isn't the obvious moonscape scenario that you get with cattle herds. Elk have browsed away entire generations of streamside trees such as cottonwood, and the older trees have largely died off. Certain bird species need these streamside trees to nest and have healthy populations. Other beneficial effects are holding back streamside erosion and adding woody debris to the rivers for fish cover. I'm sure there are many other benefits to not having elk herds perpetually munching in the river bottoms. Anyway, this is part of the ecology argument that went into the original wolf reintroduction.

    To be honest, I'm fairly neutral on the whole wolf reintroduction and hunting thing. I think wolves have been a positive for Yellowstone, but as wolf packs have spread into other non wilderness areas there have been definite negatives. While I won't buy a tag to hunt wolf in Idaho or Montana, I don't dispute the right of the citizens in those states to do so. I've certainly met other hunters who want to keep wolves out of there favorite elk hunting areas, and understand why. The glory shots of wolf kills are inflammatory in an era where 99.9% of Americans will only ever see a wolf on some sappy TV show or documentary.
  15. Your numbers (assuming they are correct) don't prove anything other than a reduced number of calves over a 20+ year period. Are the causes fully understood?

    I would also be interested to know what elk populations were like prior to the elimination of wolves in their habitat? Maybe if we want wild in wilderness, this is a more balanced situation.
  16. Here, read it for yourself from the Western Institute for Study of the Environment Commentary

  17. A lot of mountain streams wouldn't have this problem if PEOPLE hadn't pushed elk off the plains and into the mountains, as well as planted them there. Why not continue to let people manage the elk herds, and if need be, loosen regulations in highly affected areas.
    Theres one major variable that has changed in that time period, the lack of a wild apex predator.
  18. Speaking of agenda based science...

    It's people like Michael Dubrasich that made me turn against "science". Taking a political agenda and applying it as an additive filter to the scientific method isn't how you do it.
  19. This tells me nothing. What biologists? Who signs their paychecks?
  20. Are you disputing their numbers pulled from the Fish and GAme? HOw would they "do it"? Another source from someone else...

    "“From a wildlife perspective, there’s no question that this growing wolf population has had a devastating impact on our elk populations and our moose populations,” he said. “Our scientists’and biologists’ studies on all these collared packs indicate that each wolf eats an average of 16 elk per year, so if you do the math and are being conservative, our 1,000 wolves are eating 16,000 elk per year.”

    Read more: http://idahostatejournal.com/news/l...232-11df-87ef-001cc4c03286.html#ixzz1eZNGykRg

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