Welcome Kathie Lynch!
It's a privilege and honor to introduce Kathie Lynch to our friends, supporters and followers. Kathie is nothing short of a wolf connoisseur in Yellowstone National Park. Her passion is only matched by her ability to locate and share wolf information, and stories with wildlife enthusiast visiting the park as well as reaching out to less fortunate individuals not presently in Yellowstone!
From time to time we will be posting updates and interesting stories that Kathie shares with us about Yellowstone wolves. Please welcome Kathie and enjoy her wonderful narratives. You will find Kathie's stories under our "BLOG LINK".
Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks made a feeble attempt to appease advocates, and the park service with the release of their proposal today (7/3/13) for the 2013/2014 wolf hunting season by including Gardiner Basin as part of WMU 313. Montana FWP chose to continue with the incredibly high quota of 7 in WMU 313 which in and of itself will reek havoc on the northern range wolves, but with the combination of the quota of 3 in WMU 316 (directly attached to WMU 313) will be devastating to the wolf packs of YNP that utilize the northern range for winter survival.
Yellowstone National Park came out with their comments to MT FWP along with many talks with the director and the governors office -- only to be ignored as all of us have when attempting to protect the already fragile packs of YNP.
WotR wants to thank Superintendent Wenk, and the Wolf Project and valued staff for their continued voices and presence during this fight -- we are proud to stand next to you!
Yellowstone National Park and Montana’s wolves are in the Crosshairs!
They need your voice!
There are moments when it is vital that we reach out to you our trusted friends, and partners to help wolves. Sadly, that time is now. Wolves in Montana are under siege, and the already fragile Yellowstone National Park (YNP) wolves are in extreme danger. The Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks (MTFWP) 2013-2014 wolf hunting and trapping proposal is a radical departure from the Montana gray Wolf Management Plan. It is clear MTFWP is in a three state race to the bottom in mismanaging wolves in the Rocky Mountains.
Today we are asking for your voice to help Montana’s wolves. In the 2013-14 wolf hunting & trapping proposal MtFWP has reached their lowest point yet to date. This proposal has for the most part removed quotas from the entire state, and is targeting the Nations beloved Yellowstone wolves with annihilation. All the while MtFWP research indicates elk populations are increasing, and depredation throughout Montana continues to decline.
Wolves that are coexisting with humans and livestock will be killed for no other reason than bigotry and extreme mismanagement. Critical habitat for wolves near Yellowstone (Gardiner Basin) has been excluded from the quota areas. This is a deliberate attempt to kill as many YNP wolves as possible. With less than 25 wolves in the entire northern range of YNP, this will certainly prove an end to wolf packs of Yellowstone.
Some of our concerns are as follows: Hunters & trappers will be able to hunt over baited traps, as well as use electronic calls to pull wolves from safety into their line of fire. Because of the extended season September 15, 2013 – March 31, 2014 hunters will be able to hunt wolves in the advanced stages of pregnancy. If a hunter kills an alpha female he/she has killed the future survival of the pack. Disruption of the pack structure will lead to increased depredation and smaller pack sizes, yet more packs on the land. A Visions of Walt Disney’s Fantasia “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” comes to mind. A Wolf’s fur does not become full until late November; wolves killed prior to this are killed simply for the sake of killing.
Issues of Concern or Talking Points
1. Extended Season (15 Sept 2013 – 31 March 2014)
• Hunting Pregnant Wolves
• Pelt is Substandard
• Unethical & Immoral
• Disruption of the Pack Structure
• Killing to Hunt or Hunting to Kill
• Bitterroot Elk Study Research states Very Low Wolf Predation
2. Bag Limit of 5
• Annihilate Entire Pack
• Disrupt Pack Social Structure
• Increased Depredation
• Leads to Smaller Packs = Increase in Packs on the landscape
• Decrease in Recruitment
• Killing Pregnant Wolves ½ way through gestation
• Black Science
• In Contrast with North American Wildlife Conservation Model
3. Baiting Traps
• Not Fair Chase & Unethical
• Drastic Departure from Montana Wolf Management Plan
Gardiner Basin MUST be included in the quota unit of 313
Revenue producing value of 35.5 + million sustainable dollars to the communities surrounding YNP
Research value utilized world-wide
Number 1 tourist attraction in YNP
These are not just Montana’s wolves, but the Nations wolves
Miscellaneous Talking Points
Could help slow or contain CWD Chronic Wasting Disease
Livestock Depredation continue to decline – In 2012 2.6 million cattle in MT, depredation by wolves 67
Huge deviation from the Montana Gray Wolf Management Plan
Under Public Trust Doctrine Wildlife belong to all Montanans
Elk Populations are virtually at or above objectives in Montana 55% above objective
More elk now in Montana then when wolves were reintroduced
Approximately 73 wolves in Yellowstone
The following are email addresses to important decision makers that MUST hear your voice.
MtFWP Commissioners: FWPcomm@mt.gov
Governor Steve Bullock at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Environmental Adviser Tim Baker: TBaker@mt.gov
Director Montana Fish Wildlife & Parks JHagener@mt.gov
If you really want to make an impact send your letters via snail mail – but remember, they MUST arrive on or before June 24, 2013 to be heard.
Addresses to send snail mail:
Governor Steve Bullock AND Environmental Advisor Tim Baker
Office of the Governor
PO Box 200801
Helena MT 59620-0801
MTFWP Commissioners AND Director Jeff Hagener
Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks
1420 East Sixth Avenue
P.O. Box 200701
Helena, MT 59620-0701
Accepting Respecting Educating Co-existing
ACT NOW! EMERGENCY EMAIL ACTION FOR YELLOWSTONE'S LEGENDARY GREY WOLVES!
Join H.A.N.D.S. and Wolves of the Rockies to protest Montana's proposed increase to hunting quotas for Grey Wolves living adjacent to or in Yellowstone National Park. This will be a two-part e-mail campaign to send required public commentary against the proposed legislation. Help us safeguard the future of these magnificent, social creatures.
Photo: Tom Vezo (c) naturepl.com
HOW YOU CAN HELP:
1. Like/Share our page
2. Send the e-mail below this week by copying it into a new e-mail message. If you modify the content, PLEASE POLITE & RESPECTFUL OR YOU WILL HURT THE CAUSE.
3. E-MAIL CONTENT:
TO: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, TBaker@mt.gov, JHagener@mt.gov, email@example.com
SUBJECT: Public Comment on FWP Proposed Changes to 2012-2013 Wolf Season
Dear Governor Bullock, Commissioners, Mr. Baker, Mr. Hagener & Mr. Aasheim,
We are hereby submitting our comments regarding Montana Fish, Wildlife & Park’s proposed changes to the 2012-2013 Wolf Season. We are highly concerned by these proposed changes because they constitute Intensive Management, which is not a best practice and is historically unsuccessful. Our primary objection is to the proposed increased bag limit of 5 wolves. The justification for the higher levels is based on population statistic inaccuracies, and will have negative environmental and economic impact, specifically:
1. Inflated Population Count
- The justification for higher bag limit is based on an older, inaccurate population count. Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks are using the December 31, 2012 minimum wolf count. FWP failed to include the 100 wolves that Wildlife Services killed last year, and the additional wolves killed in 2013.
- Fish Wildlife & Park’s population figure also fails to take into account wolves killed in poaching, illness, injuries or inter-species mortality.
- Livestock depredation continues to decline.
2. Inaccuracies Regarding Wolf Threat to Elk; Potential Increased Depredation
- The Bitterroot Elk Study currently underway demonstrates that wolves are not a threat to elk and other wildlife.
- Elk population numbers are at or above objective in virtually every WMU or HD throughout Montana. Those few units that are not at objective were overhunted in the past and have forage, fractured habit and man-made issues that reduce ungulate population numbers.
- Prior lower levels of elk resulted from Lower House Bill 42, which encouraged several years of overhunting and encouraged killing cow elk. (Breeders)
- Proposed Strategy may lead to increased depredation
3. Excessive Bag Limit
- Bag limit of five is unjustifiable and indefensible under science-based wolf management principles.
- Bag limit of five will devastate wolf pack cohesion and could possibly lead to increased depredation because of pack fracturing.
- Bag limit of five is too high and could kill the older teachers within the pack leading to more depredation.
4. Poor Wildlife Management Strategy
- Pregnant Wolf Mortality
- Extending the season will kill pregnant wolves. Killing pregnant wolves will hurt Montana Tourism and Public Opinion of Montana
- The Montana Gray Wolf Management plan does not support the killing of Montana Wolves, which is a radical departure from the Montana Gray Wolf Management plan.
5. Poor Hunting Practices
- Hunting over bait is unethical. Montana previously set the standard in ethical hunting.
- Hunting over bait is a law enforcement nightmare and unenforceable.
- Trap pan tension or pressure needs to be ten pounds throughout Montana.
6. Potential Loss of Tourism Revenues
- Yellowstone wolves generate $35.5 million dollars annually of sustainable income. Yellowstone wolves have both research value and economic value. Yellowstone wolves also have a high level of Yellowstone National Park tourist expectation and enjoyment value.
- Hunting Yellowstone Wolves will damage Montana in the court of public opinion at the State, National and international levels.
- There will be a lag time before we see a decline in tourism because of Montana killing wolves.
While we understand and appreciate the broad and conflicting interests of Wolf stakeholders, Wildlife in Montana belongs to all individuals under the Public Trust Doctrine. Bluntly stated, special interest organizations should not be the sole determining voice concerning Wolf policy and management. We respectfully urge Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks to re-evaluate the proposed changes and to redefine a sounder plan for 2013-2014 that genuinely embodies wildlife management best practices.
Please lend your voice, your time, and your resources in helping us help wolves survive for future generations to enjoy. To hear the howl of a wolf will set you free to truly understand what it is to be wild.
Join us in the fight!
Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks will be reassembling the Wolf Management Advisory Council (WMAC) on April 12th at 8:30am Rocky Mountain Time in Helena, Montana. This 12 member citizen council last met nearly five years ago. The WMAC made recommendations to assist in the wolf’s official recovery in the Rocky Mountain Distinct Population Segment.
Governor Steve Bullock will make an opening statement about Montana and the future of Montana wolves. This one day gathering will be to discuss the effectiveness of the current wolf management plans.
Governor Bullock has asked Wolves of the Rockies to attend and “Have a seat at the table.” It is with great pleasure that Wolves of the Rockies accepted the Governor’s invitation and we encourage all of our supporters and followers to attend if at all possible or listen live to the streamed audio link we will provided at a later date.
The April 12 meeting, set to begin at 8:30 a.m., will be held at FWP Headquarters in Helena, 1420 E. Sixth Ave. The meeting will be video streamed live to each FWP regional office.
Items up for discussion will be an update on federal requirement, review of legal actions, hunting and trapping seasons, and livestock depredation to name a few items.
Public comments will be taken from 2:00 to 2:30pm.
The Wolf Advisory Management Council was created in 2000 to advise FWP on the development of a wolf conservation and management plan. Montana's plan was approved by federal officials in 2004. We at Wolves of the Rockies are very grateful for the opportunity to attend and to promote social tolerance while defending wolves with the best available science.
Governor Steve Bullock & Montana Fish Wildlife & Parks Reassembles Wolf Council
Former members of Montana’s Wolf Management Advisory Council will gather in Helena, April 12, to review and discuss the wolf management plan they helped to create.
The disbanded 12-member citizens' council last met about five years ago to discuss specific hunting and trapping recommendations in anticipation of the wolf's official recovery in the northern Rocky Mountains.
"A lot has transpired since the council last met in 2007," said FWP Director Jeff Hagener. "Governor Steve Bullock and I have invited the members to gather in Helena for a one-day meeting to review the status of the wolf in Montana today and to discuss the effectiveness of the management plan."
The April 12 meeting, set to begin at 8:30 a.m., will be held at FWP Headquarters in Helena, 1420 E. Sixth Ave. The meeting will be video streamed live to each FWP regional office. A live audio stream will also be available via the FWP website at fwp.mt.gov.
The meeting agenda includes introductory remarks from Gov. Bullock, Hagener and Chase Hibbard, the former chairman of the council. The core of the agenda includes an update on existing federal requirements; a review of the legal procedures that led to delisting in 2011; and reviews and updates on the wolf population's status, research activities, hunting and trapping seasons, livestock depredation, recent wolf-related legislation, and wolf-program funding. The agenda also includes opportunities for public comment at 2 p.m.
The delisting of wolves in 2011 allows Montana to manage wolves in a manner similar to how bears, mountain lions and other wildlife species are managed, which is guided by state management plans, administrative rules, and laws.
Montana wildlife officials recently estimated that at least 625 wolves, in 147 verified packs, and 37 breeding pairs inhabited the state at the end of 2012. To learn more about Montana’s wolf population, visit FWP online at fwp.mt.gov.
The wolf advisory council was created in 2000 to advise FWP on the development of a wolf conservation and management plan. Montana's plan was approved by federal officials in 2004.
GOVERNOR BULLOCK VETO'S SILENCER BILL
Supporters of House Bill 27 argued that the silencers only suppress the sound to make hunting less harmful on the ears, and will ensure that wolf hunting is less disturbing to neighbors.
But Bullock wrote in his veto message that the Legislature has already passed a bill that he believes will be effective in improving the wolf hunt, such as by allowing hunters to obtain multiple wolf tags. And he said suppressors make it harder to enforce hunting rules.
"I do not see the need for suppressed weapons for wolf hunting. I believe most Montanans would agree," Bullock wrote.
SB 397 was voted on 6 to 4 and passed on to a second reading... We need to get our voices out there to stop this predator kill bill in the senate
Senator Scott Boulanger has drafted a bill that will be heard today 3/26/13 on the Senate floor in Helena. This bill is all out war-fare on our apex predators -- not just wolves. WE NEED YOUR VOICE MONTANA!!! The hearings for SB 200 and SB 397 begin at 3 pm at the Capitol. Please, if you can make it we would love to stand beside you in this fight, if you can't please send in your statement against this bill immediately. Thank you WotR