WOLF HATERS spew forth the same venom over and over – here’s someone’s belief about wolves and actual correct scientific answers – educational for everyone.
Here’s what Steve had to say – it’s his version of the truth, along with all wolf haters. Steve , you may not be anti wolf, although I surely suspect you are – but you do not have your facts right. The correct answers are below:
Please read. This is not anti wolf. It’s just the truth.
1) The wolves in the western states now are NOT the native Rocky Mountain/Timber wolves. They are the MacKenzie Gray Wolves. A northern Canada/Alaska wolf that is 25% bigger than the native wolves and more aggressive by all accounts. That said, wolves are wolves and smaller less aggressive wolves may or may not make a difference in the overall wolf issues.
2) These wolves where illegally introduced per ESA guidelines.
3) There where three confirmed native Timber/Rocky Mountain Wolf packs in Northern Idaho in the 1990’s when these non native wolves where released. Within 6 to a year the new wolves killed off the last remaining native wolves forever making the Timber wolf extinct.
3) These wolves will kill an animal and not eat any of it. It’s often called overkill or sport kill.
Sometimes they will come back to the overkill and eat it but many times they will not.
One wolf will kill and eat about 24 elk a year but they kill and not eat others and harass many more to the point of exhaustion where they latter dye of stress and dehydration.
4) One of the more “sport” kills these wolves do documented by the USFW is to disable a pregnant cow elk or deer, rip the fetus out and just leave them not eating any part of the animals.
5) Wolves carry the Hydatid disease. A tapeworm disease that other wildlife contract if they accidentally inhale through the mouth infected wolf scat which is common because animals have there mouth to the ground the majority of time.
This disease was only in Alaska and Northern Canada before these wolves brought it to the lower 48.
There is some evidence to suggest that the disease in some form has always been in the lower 48 but if it is the same type is still in debate. One thing is for sure. Wolves carry and spread the disease much more than any other animal. This is another way wolves are killing wildlife. This disease can also be spread to humans through eating contaminated meat that has not been thoroughly cooked or if you inhale the eggs or spores through the mouth. The most common way is for a pet to come in contact with wolf scat and bring it home to their owners and when the owners pet the pet they inhale the spores/eggs through the mouth. This is a terrible disease with no cure.
6) Wolves commonly will eat an animal alive. Sometimes they come back to the animal over several days as the animal dies a slow horrible death.
7) These wolves are not even the slightest endangered. Between the lower 48, Canada and Alaska there are approximately 50,000 of these wolves.
8) Wolves also kill bears, Lynx, Beavers, occasional cougar and pretty much anything else they can get a hold of.
9) The original ESA contract when the wolves where released in the 90’s was that once wolves reached 200 in any western state the wolves could be managed by said state by any legal means to keep the population around 200. Any more than 200 according to the biologist that studied at that time would be “detrimental to wildlife populations”.
So that is just some of the facts for you.
Here are the actual facts:
Now Steve Langdon after reading your comments is is very clear you are spewing the exact trapping and anti-wolf arguments we hear all the time.
Now Read this:
First of all trapping is not humane nor is it ethical in the least. Not only is trapping cruel, inhumane, and barbaric, but just as much so is the trapper whose sole intentions is to harm, maim, and torture life; in addition trappers are not attentive to traps, not checking them for hours, days or even weeks, causing any trapped victim long enduring, pain, torture and suffering until death. The trapped animal, in horror, and desperate to get free, will often chew off limbs to release himself. For every target animal trapped, 2-3 non target animals are also trapped, across the board this has been documented; these non target animals also include pets, dogs often caught in traps, some survive, some not, but all suffer tremendously. I am a wildlife biologist, my partner a wildlife vet; we have a team and during field work in the season, and often out of season we run across dozens of traps, some old and should have been pulled, some new, some legal, some not; and often with animals still in the traps, often dead, succumbed to a horrific death; some still alive but painfully dying; all severely injured. We find paws and limbs chewed off in traps, shredded bone, teeth, tissues and fur. If the trapped animal chews free, they often succumb to a long, painful death due to injury and infection. What we have seen – I wouldn’t want to subject anyone to the visual. So do not ever try to convince us that trapping is humane, it’s far from it, as is the trapper.
You are mistaken in your “facts” which are incorrect and align exactly with the fearmongering propaganda of fiction and myth the anti-wolf communities commonly spread, originating from farming, ranching, hunting and flat out anti-wolf sentiment based on nothing more than the Big Bad and Little Red myth; so here are some truths and some facts for you:
1) Your statement is false. Wolves in the western lower 48 are the SAME wolves that occupied the region years ago, and are the same wolves that occupy the southern Rockies as well as the northern Rockies of BC. Your argument that the wolves of northern BC was a separate sub species of gray wolf is false and not founded. This argument was attempted in the early days prior to and during wolf recovery, however based on science, taxonomy and genetics, the sub species was found not to be significantly different to delegate a separate species and the claim was put to rest, both in the courts and in the scientific community based on biological classification and taxonomy. While anti-wolf propaganda continues to try and promote this sub species, it is false; all of this is a matter of public record and the court system.
Secondly wolves, as with any other species within intergrade zones which in this case range from northern BC, near the Yukon borders, all the way through the southern Rockies is an intergrade zone. Wolves travel great distances on a daily basis and through years of tracking have been found to travel willingly, across borders the distance of this intergrade zone. The significance of this is that wolves from northern BC and from the lower 48 have shared the same DNA for years, in addition there is not significant difference between wolves of the northern BC territories and the wolves of the lower 48 from 100 years ago, nor is significant differences now.
There are varied environments and ecosystems throughout this intergrade zone with varied climates, elevations, terrain, and of course prey populations. All of these factors play a huge part in the physical morphology of an animal species, as well as the biological characteristics, which will vary between these ecosystems and result in varied size, weight, bone structure, colors, and metabolism. The wolves in the northwestern range of the lower 48 are the native species that were there before. They are no more aggressive than any other wolves, this is a very subjective statement from those in the community that dislike wolves, but yet know little to nothing about them.
2) Your statement is false. The wolves were legally introduced per ESA guidelines. The argument you are trying to make stems from the argument above which is unfounded, unsubstantiated and found to be false per biological classification and taxonomy, they are one in the same species. So the wolves introduced were the correct and legal wolves to be introduced per ESA guidelines. Again you statement is false, and again follows along the misinformation propagated by the anti wolf community.
3) Your statement is false. “These wolves” nor any other wolves kill for sport or thrills such as you and other humans do. This is a characteristic given by man to a wild species and does not apply. Wolves kill what they will eat. They do not have the pleasure of meal size prey running around, so when they kill an elk for example, they kill to feed their pack and will return repeatedly to finish off the carcass even using the bones. Their kills also feed numerous scavenger species in the process as well. The only time a wolf will not finish a meal is when they are scared off by another predator or man. If it is another predator that predator will also consume the carcass, and at a later time the wolves will attempt to return to finish the carcass if possible. This happens on occasion when faced with cougar or grizzly confrontation. If humans have scared them off, they most likely will not return to the carcass. The terms you refer to “Sport” kill and “over” kill applies to human behavior; there is no “over” kill in the wild, they will eat every morsel they can from the carcass including bone. As far as running prey until exhaustion and not making the kill, this statement is very untrue. Wolves are highly sensitive to their prey and will not give up when the prey has become exhausted. Wolves are not good hunters and fail more than they succeed. The health, stamina and physical ability of the prey is the make or break difference in success and fail.
Wolves, as do all wild predators target the weakest, the oldest, the sickest, and sometimes the young to attack. When the wolf senses the exhaustion they will not back down. During many years of research and observing the predator prey in action, we have not ever observed a situation you described. Your statement is more of the anti wolf propaganda that is spread by those who have an agenda against the wolf species.
4) Your documented “sport” kill by the USFWS (I’m assuming USFWS is who you are referring to) would have been documented in a different manner. I was a USFWS wildlife biologist and familiar with their documentation. “Sport” kill would be your interpretation, as is your assessment of the situation. The actual case you describe however is what I was referring to above in #3, where after a kill has been made, the predator was scared off, most likely by human interference. Wolves do not “rip” a fetus out of pregnant elk or cow, but will consume it, they are highly nutritious and would be the first consumed and not left. There is no “sport” about it. Again, wild predators hunt and kill to survive, not for pleasure as do humans. In this case the predator, whether wolves or another, were scared away by most likely humans.
5) Echinococcosis, or hydatid disease is a tapeworm, or parasite. It is found in most canines, and livestock especially in cattle and sheep. It can be transmitted to humans via the normal routes of eating not well cooked meat of an infected animal. It is transmitted in the same manner in the wild, by eating organs of their prey. Wolves contract the parasite by eating prey that has been infected. It is also very common in domestic canines. Echinococcosis is very treatable and preventable in both animal and human. The parasite is common all over the world and is found more often in areas of grazing animals such as livestock, and in canines that prey on the livestock. The tapeworm has been around for centuries and has been present in the lower 48 in farming and ranching communities. As mentioned, it can be prevented and treated easily.
6) Wolves do not commonly eat their prey alive. Wolves are not good hunters, but once in the take down, they are fast at the kill, by opening the jugular their prey dies instantly, by suffocating via the throat, the prey also dies instantly. The prey goes into an immediate shock and dies within minutes. Any muscle activity and physical movement after that point is involuntary and natural upon the death of an animal. Wolves consume prey until filled and will return, never is the prey still alive for that length of time. The wolf kill is a natural kill, it is not a slow horrible death, but a very quick one. This is another of the fearmongering myths that are spread by the anti-wolf sentiment.
7) The gray wolf does still remain endangered even though they have reached the larger populations in some states, they have not regained foothold in most of the states nor their territory. While wolves are adaptable to different ecosystems and environments, the greatest threat now to the species is man, with habitat encroachment, poaching, with the wolf hating sentiment, including farming, ranching, trophy hunting and trapping. Wolves are not endangered in the Canadian provinces.
8) Wolves only kill bear, lynx, and cougar, or any other predator due to threat. Conflict over food or protecting the young are the reasons for death to another predator. Wolves will also kill other canine due to threat. They do not consume other predators. Wolves, especially single wolves will kill small mammals such as beaver, as the best available prey for their abilities.
9) The original ESA has been revised and updated. While wolves have only reached such numbers in a handful of states, they have yet to reach even near those numbers in the majority of the states. In 2011 and 2012, wolves were delisted in several states and massively hunted in blood baths in several states. In the Great Lakes states and Wyoming, by federal court order they were emergency relisted due to extreme mismanagement of the species. In other states such as Montana and Idaho they are hunted and poached. In other states where numbers are still low, they are partially delisted such as Oregon and Washington, and in yet numerous states the states protect them as they continue to recover. Wolves do still remain endangered as their natural dispersal is met with gunshot 100% of the time as they attempt to travel into other states to gain foothold in their native territories. Several states want wolves to return for obvious reasons such as to improve the health of the ungulate herds as well as the health of the declining ecosystems. They are not allowed to do so due to the wolf hating community. We know what wolf management looks like by the states, they do not have the ability to manage the species effectively for sustainable populations for the future; if and when wolves are delisted nationally it will be a bloodbath.
So, Steve Langdon, these are just some facts for you. We don’t want to hear your fearmongering, myths, Big Bad and Little Red fairy tales until you learn more of the truths about which you speak. Thank you for your comments, now it’s time to find another page that better suits you and your anti wolf, pro trapping attitude as this is the wrong page for you.