Wolves on the Westside?

TFG,

Canis = genus
Canis lupus = species of Canis
Canis lupus occidentalis = subspecies of Canis lupus

I'm not saying there aren't differences among subspecies (I'm not a mammalogist), but professional mammalogists disagree about where to draw lines defining subspecies.

DNA data can identify evolutionary lineages. These are extremely valuable in understanding the population history within a species as well as distinguishing among species. You don't seem to understand how these data are being used in the information you cite.

... and as far as I'm aware, no one has ever suggested that black bears and grizzly bears were the same species. Brown bear, grizzly bear, Kodiak, are all one species, Ursos arctos. Again, many subspecies have been described and, again, mammalogists disagree over where to assign boundaries for subspecies.

D
 

Freestone

Not to be confused with freestoneangler
Totally wrong. Now more and more biologists confirm the difference in species as well as dna samples confirm this fact. Its like saying bears are bears... black bear, grizzly, kodiak. All the same? Yeah right.
You seem to be mixing up species and subspecies. A simplistic way to tell is that if it has two names, it is the species. If it has three names, it is a subspecies. So Canus lupus is the species but Canis lupus occidentalis is one of the many subspecies (and says so in the article you referenced). And no, it is not like saying that black and brown bears (grizzly and kodiak) are the same as they are different species, both of which have many subspecies. Using your example, it is like saying grizzly bears and kodiak bears are the same even though they are different SUBspecies.

Ursus americanus, American black bear
 
So we can agree that the canadian grey wolf, brought to Idaho, is a different subspecies, larger etc, non native to Idaho that was introduced? I am saying it was, and am showing you evidence that it was infact non native. IF you have anything that can refute that other than semantics, please share.
 
You seem to be mixing up species and subspecies. A simplistic way to tell is that if it has two names, it is the species. If it has three names, it is a subspecies. So Canus lupus is the species but Canis lupus occidentalis is one of the many subspecies (and says so in the article you referenced). And no it is not like saying that black and brown bears (grizzly and kodiak) as there is a seprate species for black and for brown bears, both of which have many subspecies. Using your example, it is like saying grizzly bears and kodiak bears are the same even though they are different SUBspecies.




oh, ok, now I see where you are are going with this. I forgot to add the "sub" part in the original post.....
 
So we can agree that the canadian grey wolf, brought to Idaho, is a different subspecies, larger etc, non native to Idaho that was introduced? I am saying it was, and am showing you evidence that it was infact non native. IF you have anything that can refute that other than semantics, please share.
I'll reply in three points.

1) As I've said above, professional mammalogists don't agree on how to circumscribe wolf subspecies. What difference does it make if a bunch of us yahoos on a fly-fishing board agree?

2) Professional taxonomists (and I know a few...) would always caution not to make too much of the distinctions that are used to define subspecies (or varieties, or races, or any other infra-specific category). If there were strong, solid biological differences, they would be recognized as species. Infra-specific categories are used to distinguish somewhat finer variation among individuals in nature and are often little more than ecotypic variants.

3) Some really good professional mammologists and wildlife biologists and population geneticists are involved with developing management plans for wolves in this country. I'd be very reluctant to second guess them on the science [the same argument can/should be used for accepting the science on which conclusions about global warming is based, but there are still global warming deniers out there]. If they accept that introducing wolves from Canada into ecosystems in the northern Rockies is an acceptable replacement for the extirpated genetic stock, then I'm not going to argue.

D

PS, I'm going fishin' in a few minutes; y'all will have to carry on without me.
 

Freestone

Not to be confused with freestoneangler
I don't think anyone is disputing that Canis lupus occidentalis was the subspecies introduced to Yellowstone and Idaho as that has been well documented and was part of the plan (as this plan was pre-genetic testing). But, as salmo_g stated earlier, it helps to make one's point with the correct info.
 

Dan Nelson

Hiker, Fisher, Writer, Bum

Alex MacDonald

that's His Lordship, to you.....
I think this is another highly emotional, but untrue, statement.

The ESA is a very popular law. Reintroductions of locally extirpated species is a fundamental management practice used for many species of plants and animals managed under the law (think of the success of the Golden Paintbrush here in Washington and the California Condor in the SW US). Many runs of steelhead and salmon also have been extirpated from rivers/streams along the west coast; many others would have been, if not for expensive mitigation efforts.

The noisy "activists" seem mostly to be on the side of re-extirpation of the successful human-assisted (eg, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming) and naturally-occurring (eg, Washington) returning wolves. Most of us who favor a management plan for wolves, which returns them to their historical place as an apex predator and keystone species, do so in quiet admiration of both the wolves and the state/federal wildlife managers for their remarkable resilience in the face of vituperative and lethal opposition.

An irrational fear of wolves (and snakes and spiders) runs deep in the human psyche, however, and it is not something that is going to go away any time soon.

D
You'd be wrong, Richard. You're confusing common sense for emotion. I also never claimed the ESA was unpopular. I said it was used in this case by a small group of people to further their desires for redressing a wrong they feel was done over a century ago. I oppose the introduction of any non-native species, especially by bureaucrats. It seems to me that your claim about "vituperative and lethal" comes not from people like me, but from those who support the introduction of wolves. As I said, all you have to do is take a look at the treatment they gave to the first guy to fill a wolf tag in Idaho; talk about emotional!

All this aside, the bottom line is: wolves haven't existed within the Washington, Idaho, Oregon, Montana or Wyoming in any great numbers for a century. That's not "emotional", it's a fact. To massively increase their numbers from a few hundred into the thousands (you can google the Montana research project for the numbers there) by importing them from Canada, and expecting there not to be a great many problems is irrational. Nature abhors a vacuum, and if people think wolves fill an "unoccupied" niche, they'd be wrong, especially after a hundred years. I recognize there are many who'd really like to turn back time, but they fail to acknowledge that time as we understand it is linear.
 

Alex MacDonald

that's His Lordship, to you.....
Another "aside" to throw onto this discussion; how many people are aware that the Russians have had an ongoing research project regarding domestication of both the Siberian wolf and the fox? It's been going on for over 30 years, and they've been able to domesticate the fox to the level of a house pet, but not the wolf. I find this really strange, since I've always assumed that our dogs were domesticated from wolves. Apparently not!
 
I'll reply in three points.

1) As I've said above, professional mammalogists don't agree on how to circumscribe wolf subspecies. What difference does it make if a bunch of us yahoos on a fly-fishing board agree?

2) Professional taxonomists (and I know a few...) would always caution not to make too much of the distinctions that are used to define subspecies (or varieties, or races, or any other infra-specific category). If there were strong, solid biological differences, they would be recognized as species. Infra-specific categories are used to distinguish somewhat finer variation among individuals in nature and are often little more than ecotypic variants.

3) Some really good professional mammologists and wildlife biologists and population geneticists are involved with developing management plans for wolves in this country. I'd be very reluctant to second guess them on the science [the same argument can/should be used for accepting the science on which conclusions about global warming is based, but there are still global warming deniers out there]. If they accept that introducing wolves from Canada into ecosystems in the northern Rockies is an acceptable replacement for the extirpated genetic stock, then I'm not going to argue.

D

PS, I'm going fishin' in a few minutes; y'all will have to carry on without me.
The same "professional" taxonomists, biologists, mammolgists... etc etc, that cooked up the same science used to introduce the wolves in Idaho right? That was a great plan they all came up with. EPIC FAIL. Why introduce a non native, apex predator into an eco-system that is in check and doing fine?
 
Another "aside" to throw onto this discussion; how many people are aware that the Russians have had an ongoing research project regarding domestication of both the Siberian wolf and the fox? It's been going on for over 30 years, and they've been able to domesticate the fox to the level of a house pet, but not the wolf. I find this really strange, since I've always assumed that our dogs were domesticated from wolves. Apparently not!
You can domesticate a wolf as you think of "domesticated". However, once domesticated, it no longer resembels a wolf. Closest are the Wolfdog. Wolf usually mixed with malamutes/husky/german shepherds. They look somewhat similar to wolves...well sorta. The wolfdog community referres to the % of wolf in a dog as "content %". Content % being the ammount of wolf in it. The closer they get to domestication as we think of it, the lower the content. ie in the teens %. You could take a few packs of wolves and have them looking like weiner dogs in about 10 - 15 years if you knew what you were doing. Their dna is hyper mutatable.

These animals have no place on the ESA list. Well, no more of a place than the wild dogs that would result from the humaine society dumping all of their leftover pitbulls into the woods where I take my kids hiking.
 

dflett68

Active Member
You can domesticate a wolf as you think of "domesticated". However, once domesticated, it no longer resembels a wolf. Closest are the Wolfdog. Wolf usually mixed with malamutes/husky/german shepherds. They look somewhat similar to wolves...well sorta. The wolfdog community referres to the % of wolf in a dog as "content %". Content % being the ammount of wolf in it. The closer they get to domestication as we think of it, the lower the content. ie in the teens %. You could take a few packs of wolves and have them looking like weiner dogs in about 10 - 15 years if you knew what you were doing. Their dna is hyper mutatable.

These animals have no place on the ESA list. Well, no more of a place than the wild dogs that would result from the humaine society dumping all of their leftover pitbulls into the woods where I take my kids hiking.
a guy up the road from our place has two dogs, he says one is 50% and the other is 100%. the 100% one looks like a wolf to me. the 50% one is white but looks pretty wolfy. they walk them both around our back fields all the time, and we walk past their place all the time on the way into town. they normally bark if we go by with a dog, otherwise they are quiet but curious. they seem fully domesticated to me, but maybe they aren't the real thing.