Posted on October 12, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
More releases of wolves are needed to genetically bolster the population in the wild. Photo by John and Karen Hollingsworth/USFWS.
Letter to feds points out dangers of ‘genetic bottleneck’
Political resistance at the state level shouldn’t deter federal biologists from releasing more Mexican gray wolves into the wild, according to conservation activists, who say that such releases are needed to prevent the wild population from becoming genetically crippled.
In a letter to federal officials, biologists and wildlife advocates urged Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell to release at least five more packs of wolves into the Gila National Forest in New Mexico through the end of this year and into 2016.
The “perilously low” number of breeding pairs makes the wolf population vulnerable to inbreeding depression that could send the population into a downward spiral, more than 40 biologists and conservation groups warned in the Oct. 8 letter. Continue reading
Filed under: biodiversity, endangered species, Environment, wildlife | Tagged: biodiversity, endangered species, Gila Wilderness, Mexican gray wolves, wolves | 2 Comments »
Posted on August 20, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Wolf pups at play in northern California. Photo via CDFW.
California wildlife agency documents five wolf pups and two adult wolves
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — OR-7, the lone wolf that enthralled wildlife lovers when he wandered through northern California a few years was the trailblazer.
Earlier this spring another lone wolf wandered into the state, and now, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife says there’s a new wolfpack forming. The agency has photographically documented five pups and several individual adults that have taken up residence in the state.
“This news is exciting for California,” said Charlton H. Bonham, CDFW Director. “We knew wolves would eventually return home to the state and it appears now is the time.” Continue reading
Filed under: biodiversity, endangered species, Environment, wildlife | Tagged: biodiversity, California, California wolfpack, endangered species, Environment, Shasta Pack, wildlife, wolves | 1 Comment »
Posted on August 19, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
South Dakota a hot spot for wolf deaths
FRISCO — Since the Dakotas are sandwiched between Montana and Minnesota, it’s probably not completely surprising that wolves turn up there from time to time.
But the latest sighting of what certainly looks like a wolf has spurred a call for more education and public outreach to prevent the animal from being shot, either by accident or purposefully by over-eager hunters.
Other wolves have been shot been shot and killed in South Dakota in recent years, as reported by newspapers there, and the Center for Biological Diversity has also tracked the fate or wolves that wandered out of the northern Rockies. Continue reading
Filed under: biodiversity, Environment, wildlife | Tagged: Black Hills, Black Hills wolf sighting, endangered species, hunting, South Dakota, wildlife, wolves | 2 Comments »
Posted on August 6, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Idaho wolves catch a break. Photo via USFWS.
State-based wolf plan would have allowed trapping wolves to inflate elk populations
FRISCO — Wildlife advocates in Idaho have slowed the frantic state-sanctioned wolf slaughter that has ensued since the federal government turned management of the species over to the state.
In response to a lawsuit filed by conservationist and wilderness advocate Ralph Maughan, along with four conservation groups, Idaho Fish and Game and the U.S. Forest Service have halted wolf killing in the federally-protected Franck Church-River of No Return Wilderness during the winter of 2015-16. Continue reading
Filed under: biodiversity, Environment, wilderness, wildlife | Tagged: Idaho, Idaho Fish and Game, River of No Return Wilderness, U.S. Forest Service, wildlife, wolf hunting, wolves | Leave a comment »
Posted on July 2, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Wildlife advocates say arbitrary caps on population and habitat won’t allow for full recovery of the species
A Mexican gray wolf in the wilds of the Blue Range wolf recovery area. Photo courtesy of the Mexican Wolf Interagency Field Team.
FRISCO — Wildlife advocates say a federal plan to cap the Mexican gray wolf population at 300 to 325 animals won’t ensure the long-term survival of the species, and they’re going to court to make sure the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service adopts policies that give endangered Mexican gray wolves a fair shot at recovery in their historic U.S. range.
At issue is a final federal rule issued early this year that would likely prevent the wolves from recolonizing suitable habitat in northern Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, and Utah.
“Unfortunately, politics supplants wildlife biology in key parts of the USFWS Mexican gray wolf plan,” said John Mellgren, the Western Environmental Law Center attorney representing the advocacy groups in the lawsuit. “Our goal in this case is to put the science back into the management of Mexican wolves in the U.S.” Continue reading
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Posted on June 14, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
GOP continues wolf persecution. Photo via USFWS.
Latest budget amendment would overturn federal court rulings that reinstated protection for wolves
FRISCO — For the second time in five years, anti-environmental Republicans in Congress are trying to make an end run around the Endangered Species Act by stripping federal protection for gray wolves in Wyoming and the western Great Lakes states.
The amendment to a spending bill for the Interior Department is similar to a measure passed in 2011, when Congress removed protections for wolves in Idaho and Montana — the first time that Congress legislatively removed protections for a species. Since the 2011 rider passed, more than 1,900 wolves have been killed in the two states. Continue reading
Filed under: biodiversity, endangered species, Environment, federal government, wildlife | Tagged: biodiversity, endangered species, Environment, House GOP, wildlife, wolves | 2 Comments »
Posted on May 30, 2015 by Bob Berwyn
Without continued federal protection, wolves may never return to the southern Rockies
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — Federal biologists have confirmed by DNA analysis that the animal killed by a coyote hunter near Kremmling last month was an endangered gray wolf.
The hunter notified state wildlife managers immediately, claiming that he though the animal was a coyote. The incident is being investigated by Colorado Parks and Wildlife and the USFWS.
Check out the discussion thread on this the Colorado Mule Deer Association’s Facebook page to get a sense of peoples’ attitudes about wolves in Colorado. Continue reading
Filed under: biodiversity, endangered species, Environment, wildlife | Tagged: biodiversity, Colorado, endangered species, hunting, wolves | Leave a comment »