Pat Parker12 June 2009 at 2:04amPosts: 2683 (0 today)Status: offline
Since this topic title is "Educate Peter" I decided to add my thread here.
Many lunatics here on the moon club know of my love for wolves and my passion for their cause - survival amongst us. There are countless organizations and people who work hard to help educate people about the true beauty of this animal and the reason they need to be protected from their greatest enemy - humans.
I do whatever I can to help support the organizations who work so hard to protect the wolves. I honestly wish I could do more and know that if circumstances ever allowed, I, too, would dedicate my life and livelihood to helping these animals. However, I am a middle-class, hard working person who does what little I can to help the wolves' cause.
I subscribe and contribute to many of the wildlife preservation groups and especially focus on organizations which represent wolves. My personal favorite is Wolf Park in Battle Ground, Indiana (of all places to have wolves :>). This is a very unique and wonderful place founded solely for the purpose of research and education on wolves. It's my personal favorite because a few years ago, I made a trip there for a "Wolf Intensive Weekend" and a 3-Day Photo Seminar and I had the best experience ever - it is still one of my favorite vacation memories and I cannot wait to return there.
Along with Wolf Park (www.wolfpark.org), I also contribute to a larger organization: Living With Wolves (www.Livingwithwolves.org). This is a great organization that is backed by two very well known (amongst the wolf world) wolf researchers, photographers, educators: Jim Dutcher and Jamie Dutcher.
I receive their e-newsletters and thought that it would be an interesting topic for the moon club. I've added it to the general thread, but decided that I would add it to this thread (in the event that you, Peter, do get to read this forum every now and then).
E-Newsletter from: www.livingwithwolves.org
Welcome to our summer e-newsletter. As mountain snow finally gives way to summer wildflowers, newborn wolf pups have emerged from their den. For the next four months they will be cared for by their entire family, their pack. By autumn they will be nearly full-grown, old enough to travel and old enough to be targeted as trophy game in upcoming state-sanctioned wolf hunts.
As of May 4th, wolves are off the Endangered Species List and can be shot in Montana and Idaho. A massive public killing season, lasting as long as seven months in some areas is planned to begin this September, even allowing for the indiscriminate shooting of pregnant females next winter.
These new rules are being decided by the states' wildlife management agencies. In Idaho, the Department of Fish and Game is in charge of determining how many wolves can be killed, and how many wolf hunting tags will be sold. Each tag will cost $11.50. When asked how many tags the agency intends to sell, its own Deputy Director and Wildlife Bureau Chief, Jim Unsworth, is on record saying, "Well it's hard to say. We sell about 20,000 bear tags, so that might be a good index. We're ready to roll." Only about 850 wolves live in Idaho, approximately 500 live in Montana.
It is only some hunters and outfitters and a few ranchers who wish to kill these animals. But it won't take many of them, or very much time, to decimate the fragile population of 1,350 wolves that live on the vast public lands of these two Western states.
Wolves are intelligent, social, family animals, with the ability to express joy and sadness, and even compassion. Only a select few other species exhibit these same traits so clearly. It is for those traits that we do not hunt gorillas, elephants or dolphins. Why should it be different for wolves? Wolves need to be protected.
As always, thank you for your support!
Jim Dutcher Jamie Dutcher
Answering Your Questions
Lately, with all the interest in wolves being removed from the Endangered Species List, we have been asked a lot of questions. We would like to take this opportunity to respond to some of these questions and concerns.
1. Do wolves kill people? No. There has never been a confirmed case of a healthy, wild wolf killing a human in North America. Wolves are afraid of people. It is only in rare cases when wolves have lost their wildness and become tame or habituated to people that they have occasionally bitten someone, particularly if food is nearby. Since 1900, more than a century ago, there has been only one possible case of a wolf-related human fatality. That was in Saskatchewan, in central Canada, where local wolves had become habituated to garbage, thus losing their fear of humans. And it is debatable whether this isolated example is attributable to wolves or to a bear. To put this into context, in North America, bears (black and grizzly) killed 27 people since 2000, and since 1990, cougars killed 12.
2. I've heard that these reintroduced wolves are larger and different wolves than the ones that used to live in the Northwest. Is this true?
No. The Tundra Wolf of Canada, which was released in Idaho and Yellowstone National Park is a subspecies of the Gray Wolf and is the same subspecies that previously lived here. This claim of a larger and different type of wolf is often used to discredit the species' reintroduction. It is not true.
3. Do wolves kill for sport? No. Wolves kill to sustain themselves. Killing elk and deer can be difficult and dangerous for wolves. It is not infrequent that they are fatally wounded by a kick from a hoof, and 80 to 90% of the time their efforts are unsuccessful. If they do succeed, the food left unfinished by wolves feeds numerous other animals, including scavengers such as bears, eagles and wolverines.
Wolves are timid creatures and therefore are often frightened away from a kill by the presence of people or by other predators. This creates the assumption that wolves kill and leave the remains behind. In reality, research has shown that wolves almost always eat the entire carcass, returning to this food source all winter long. Many predators do this. For more information about wolves, CLICK HERE.
What Wolves are Up Against
The quote below is directly lifted from a blog we've been monitoring. This is just one chilling example of the aggressive mindset of a very vocal and active minority. Some clearly want as many wolves dead as possible.
"We need to get the word out to the hunters this fall, always aim for the guts until you see one you want on the wall then go for the vitals on the last one and tag it. The rest will simply run off and become food for the other critters. Together we can ruduce their numbers in a hurry."
"read the regs. They say you cant kill a wolf doesent say anything about shooting'em."
As you can see, we have our hands full. It is critical to remember that, for the most part, wolves live on federal lands, lands owned by every American, not only residents of Idaho and Montana. It was a well thought-out and expensive national effort to bring wolves back. Everyone can have a say about their future. For what you can do NOW to save wolves, CLICK HERE.
What Living with Wolves is Doing
To protect wolves by educating as many people as possible, we are
· publishing a quarterly e-newsletter such as this one
· designing a new, advanced, more visual and interactive website
· writing magazine articles that reach millions of people
· meeting with government officials at the state and federal levels
· giving personal multimedia educational presentations, nationwide
· encouraging people to take action to save wolves
During the past four years, Jim and Jamie Dutcher have given nearly 100 presentations at schools, museums, nature centers, zoos and universities, inspiring thousands upon thousands of adults and children. Most recently, Jim and Jamie spoke to record crowds at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, at Chicago's Field Museum, at the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition in Charleston, South Carolina, and locally in Idaho, to a standing-room only audience at the Ketchum Community Library and to fascinated schoolchildren in Boise.
After their largest presentation so far, where the Dutchers were the featured event, John Powell of the Southeast Wildlife Exposition wrote,
"The Southeastern Wildlife Exposition is one of the largest events of its kind in the nation, attracting over 500 exhibitors and artists who present their offerings to more than 40,000 attendees. From the moment we announced that Jim and Jamie Dutcher would be presenting their story, 'Living with Wolves', we knew how special this would be. Calls and e-mails poured in from those that knew of the Dutchers, and the anticipation grew in the months leading up to our event. During the presentation, there were few dry eyes and even fewer empty seats. Jim and Jamie produce a first-class presentation that appeals to audiences of all ages and backgrounds."
Each presentation helps to create a broad public awareness about the social nature of wolves, about threats to their survival, about their importance to healthy ecosystems, and about action people can take to protect wolves. Educating people and changing opinions takes time, but with your support and commitment to Living with Wolves it is happening.
We would like to thank the Otis Booth Foundation for their grant to further our educational outreach.
This newsletter was made possible by a grant from the Koret Foundation