Wolf researcher plans to sue WSU over free speech | KING5.com

protect washington wolves, protect the wolves

King 5 was emailed the threats of going Old West that Elected Official Joel Kretz made… yet they didnt  ask him about them…..

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is investigating the first livestock death blamed on wolves in this year’s grazing season.

It was found near the historic range of the Profanity Peak pack, which was monitored by a Washington State University researcher, who is now suing over free speech

A range rider found the dead calf in Ferry County near the Lambert Creek area Monday evening. It’s near the Profanity Peak pack’s range, the wolves killed last summer by WDFW after attacking 15 cattle – 10 confirmed and five probable attacks. A female and three pups survived. No one has confirmed what pack is responsible for the most recent death.

The lethal removal further divided the state over wolf management, as protesters rallied in Olympia and cattle ranchers received death threats in the northeast corner where the majority of wolves live.

“I love these cows and I don’t want to feed them to the wolves. I don’t want to see them tortured,” Kathy McKay said. “At least the locals, none of us need them, none of us want them. We’re fine without them. They’re killers. They’re vicious killers.”

McKay’s parents built the K Diamond K Ranch in 1961. Life was good, she said, until wolves migrated back to Washington after nearly a century of being gone.

The Profanity Peak pack killed 30 times more cattle than the majority of wolf packs studied by WSU carnivore expert Dr. Rob Wielgus.

“In particular we noticed that the Profanity Peak pack last year had completely switched to livestock. They were killing a lot of livestock in that particular location,” he said.

Wielgus monitored the pack last year. He found salt licks were attracting cattle near the den site, aggravating the problem. His wildlife camera video of the Colville National Forest shows cattle and wolves crossing paths.

During the study, Wielgus followed wolves and cattle to track wolf depredations, the term used to refer to injuries or deaths attributed to wolves. He found that 99 percent of ranchers in wolf occupied areas in Washington lose one out of a thousand cattle to wolves. The rancher who lost cattle to the Profanity Peak pack had a 3 percent loss rate – 30 times what Wielgus observed.

WDFW authorized the lethal removal of the pack on August 5. The salt blocks were removed August 8, according to WDFW. Wielgus knew about the salt blocks June 27.

“The livestock were still on the den site. We got video monitoring of wolves trying to chase them away from the den site, but the livestock kept returning because of the salt blocks. Then the livestock started being killed by the wolves,” Wielgus said.

Bill McIrvin, the rancher whose cattle were killed in the incidents, was also at the center of controversy over the lethal removal of the Wedge pack in 2014 after losing cattle.

“Last year, during a period of repeated wolf depredations to livestock by the Profanity Peak wolf pack, the Department became aware that the wolf rendezvous site overlapped with part of the normal grazing path, where livestock were concentrated with the use of salt blocks. Once that overlap was detected, the Department contacted the producer, who removed the salt blocks from the area on August 8. Some livestock continued to use the general area where the salt was, so the producer (and family members, staff, and range rider) increased human presence around the livestock to check on and move livestock as needed,” WDFW Wolf Lead Donny Martorello wrote in a statement.

KING 5 also asked WDFW about steps McIrvin took to prevent conflict.

“For Producer #1, the proactive deterrence measures were 1) turned out calves at weights generally over 200 lbs., 2) met expectation for sanitation, and 3) cows birthed calves outside of occupied wolf territories. Also, after the first wolf depredation, the producers agreed to the use of regular human presence (a reactive deterrence measure) for the remainder of the grazing season. This was accomplished by hiring two additional ranch staff, using a range rider, and increasing presence on the grazing site by the producer and family members,” Martorello said.

Wielgus reports the den site was common knowledge. When Wielgus told the Seattle Times what he knew last summer, he couldn’t believe the response.

“I was labeled a liar and a fraud. I was told by my superiors not to talk to the press so I could not tell the full story,” he said.

Rep. Joel Kretz, R-Wauconda, argued that ranchers used the same land as years past and didn’t know they’d put salt near wolves.

“When they salted they had no idea a rendezvous site had moved in. They put it on the same bench they’d put it for 45 damn years. It’s the same place. It’s part of the rotation through the grazing season. You keep your cows moving,” he said.

Martorello said the state is aware of Wielgus’ video.

“The Department has seen the video, reportedly made during the conflict with the Profanity Peak pack in 2016. We were made aware of it by WSU graduate students operating the trail cameras. It did not change Department’s assessment of the situation. The majority of the known wolf packs in Washington overlap livestock, and many overlap active grazing allotments. That is one result of wolves recolonizing of Washington state. However, the fact that livestock and wolves overlap and actively use the same landscape doesn’t necessary mean there will be conflict. In fact, experience in Washington and other western states shows that wolves and livestock coexist without conflict about 80 percent of the time,” Martorello said.

For Kretz, Wielgus did more harm than good, further dividing the state over wolf management.

“We all got tired of the death threats. That’s not the way for a scientist to be operating, I don’t think,” he said.

Kretz told WSU he thinks Wielgus’ science is driven by agenda. WSU reviewed the research but that resulted in no evidence of misconduct. Still, Wielgus believes his job is hanging by a thread.

“I was publicly discredited and defamed by the university. The university said I had lied. I did not lie. I simply reported the facts,” he said.

Wielgus plans to sue for six years salary and then leave his teaching position.

At the same time, he’s publishing research he calls one of the most in-depth wolf studies ever. He found wolf attacks on livestock are extremely uncommon, and that the more humans kill wolves, the more wolves kill cattle the following year. Depredations, he says, typically follow lethal removal of wolves due to disarray in the social dynamics of the apex predators.

“My agenda is scientific truth, and that’s what’s gotten me in trouble in this case. I could’ve just shut up,” Wielgus said.

For Wielgus, the answer is simple: keep cows away from wolf dens. He believes many ranchers are working hard to live beside wolves, but are too afraid to speak out in areas where animosity toward the carnivores continues to mount.

“It’s all about the encounter probability. Predators respond to prey on how frequently they encounter them,” he said.

For Kretz, wolf management isn’t so clear. He’s furious that WDFW did not respond fast enough to the calf found dead Monday. It was called in around 6 p.m., he says, and WDFW responded that there were no conflict specialists available to investigate until Tuesday morning.

“The first incident of the year they can’t get somebody there?” he said. “We can’t trust them to have their act together.”

Kretz worried the evidence would deteriorate, making it more difficult to confirm it as a wolf kill.

“They’re not going to work 24-7. That’s impossible to expect from them,” said Western Wildlife Conservation Director Hank Siepp. “We’re trying to educate people that we have a new critter on the landscape and there will be challenges.”

Washington State University sent a letter to Kretz in regards to his concern over Wielgus. It included the following findings:

“Discussion of the data set and its analysis is continuing among Professor Wielgus, Professor Dasgupta, and other WSU researchers. The University believes the best path forward is continued analysis and discussion of the data within the research community, culminating in submission of articles to scientific journals as appropriate. There is no evidence of research misconduct in this matter. Accordingly, the University has not opened a research misconduct investigation.”

Source: Wolf researcher plans to sue WSU over free speech | KING5.com

National Native News: A national tribal conservation group has petitioned the Wyoming Game and Fish Department

Protect yellowstone wolves, protect the wolves, sacred resource protection zone

Our Article begins at approximately 2 minutes into the Broadcast 😉

A national tribal conservation group Protect The Wolves™ has petitioned the Wyoming Game and Fish Department to create a 31-mile sacred resources protection zone around Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks where wolves cannot be hunted. (PHOTO-DOUG SMITH VIA NPS.GOV/YELL)

Source: National Native News » News For All Americans

If Depredations can be reduced near Yellowstone they can be in Washington State as well.

 

protect washington wolves, profanity peak slaughter, protect the wolves

Washington State Ranchers need to dump their typical 1800s old west mentality for a more successful proven way…. Paying for 2 possible kills $65-67,000 needs to stop! Martorello needs to Go or come into modern times where non-lethal is not only more effective, but far less expensive as studies have shown. Martorello also needs to loose the “Special Interest Cattle Ranchers and Trophy Hunting Groups” need to be removed from the Wolf Advisory Group!

Successfully reducing cattle kills

Alongside Range Riders and low stress handling, Hibbard also uses wildlife tracking and flagging to deter predators, like wolves, at his ranch north of Yellowstone National Park. It’s part of the Tom Miner Basin, where a similar situation between wolves, grizzly bears and cattle played out years ago.

Hibbard works cattle alongside fellow rancher and wolf biologist, Hilary Anderson. Over the last two decades, their community has used low stress methods, wildlife tracking, flagging and range riders to bring the number of cattle kills in their region to nearly zero.

“The people who didn’t like wolves before, they still don’t like wolves,” Anderson said. “It’s just that instead of feeling that they were a victim, they’re moving into a place where they do feel support, they do feel they have resources and there’s a sense of empowerment.”

Those methods are also becoming popular in California. But, Hibbard said it’s a total lifestyle change for ranchers.

“They basically have to admit, as I did—and that’s why I resisted it for several years too—was that what ‘geez, i spent more than three decades learning and getting good at, was basically wrong.”

Range Riders are in particularly high demand in Northeast Washington, because that region is home to nearly 85 percent of the state’s wolf population.

But, Scotten said local ranchers are disappointed and dismayed by the potential for a repeat of last summer’s events.

Source: Ranchers, Range Riders Brace For Another Grazing Season Among Wolves | KUOW News and Information

Cowlitz Tribal News Paper Article was Printed

protect the wolves, wolves, wolf, sacred resource protection safety zone

Greetings Everyone,

Cowlitz member Roger Dobson and his life partner, Patricia Herman, have founded a Native American wildlife conservation organization called Protect The Wolves™. Our organization stands with the Creator and all living creatures we hold sacred in the circle of life.

We at Protect The Wolves™ are striving to become THE VOICE our wolves, bison, grizzlies, cougars, and wild horses need to help ensure their safety and Creator-given right to live wild and free. With the research we are doing, we have discovered the necessary tools available to us through not only the Indian Trust, but also the Public Trust Doctrine. We are incorporating the mandates of these Trusts with our religious and treaty rights in hopes we can become the voice our wildlife need to stop certain politicians and their “kill all” mentality.

Our mission statement promotes not only education, but outspoken advocacy for wolves and other wildlife across North America as well as across the globe. Education of the younger generations is important as they will be the keepers of our sacred species for coming generations. We will always encourage civil and intelligent debate while discouraging attacks on anyone who has a different opinion or lifestyle. We are not interested in running an advocacy group that attacks hunters or trappers on a personal level.

Protect The Wolves™ goals:

  • A primary goal is to make full use of our given Native American religious treaty rights as they can be applied to wildlife protection.
  • Educate the masses on the destruction of our environment by species such as cattle, which create greenhouse gases and soil contamination that negatively impacts Mother Earth’s atmosphere, water supplies, and wildlife. Cattle also introduce unwanted species of grasses into our forests, which can contribute to wildfires. Additionally, the degradation of our environment interferes with the public’s ability and right to enjoy our National Forests.
  • Make poisoning wildlife illegal across North America. Poisoned animals tend to die slowly and in pain, and the poison leaches back into the ecosystem. It may also secondarily poison a scavenging animal or raptor.
  • Ban hound hunting.
  • Encourage the banning of cruel snares, traps, while speaking out for immediately outlawing M44s or cyanide bombs.

 

  • Help institute policies to require non-lethal deterrent options first and foremost, in wolf, coyote, and large predator management. Encourage the requirement of a list of non-lethal deterrent methods which must be employed by livestock producers in order to maintain a public land grazing allotment lease. Noncompliance would result in lease termination.
  • Emphasize safe travel for wildlife, including setting traffic speed limits in certain areas, putting up more wildlife crossing signs, and encouraging the construction of wildlife corridors for animals to migrate or disperse without becoming roadkill.
  • Educate municipalities as well as the masses about wolves, coyotes, coywolves, hybrids, and grizzlies. This will include promoting the highest quality multimedia tools, calling out poorly written or nonfactual pieces, giving lectures or presentations, distributing printed materials, and encouraging activities like wildlife observation and photography, and nature retreats.
  • Help establish hunting-free buffer zones around all National Parks. If certain parks or wilderness areas disallow hunting, those areas could be promoted as wildlife observation areas, which would help the local economy in the form of tourist dollars.
  • Wilderness spaces also have value in and of themselves for their ability to restore health and peace of mind not only for humans, but wildlife as well. How often do stressed city-dwellers get to observe the complex interplay of wild species in large areas of natural habitat

Protect The Wolves

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