Archive for the ‘Great Lakes’ Tag

Federal Court: Great Lakes Wolf Hunting Ends Now   Leave a comment

From:  The Humane Society of the United States

Dec. 19, 2014 by Kaitlin Sanderson: 240-672-8397; ksanderson@humanesociety.org

Sport Hunting and Trapping of Wolves is Over

Sport hunting and trapping of wolves in the Great Lakes region must end immediately, a federal District Court has ruled. The court overturned a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decision that removed Endangered Species Act protections for gray wolves living in the western Great Lakes region, which includes Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.

The Humane Society of the United States and a coalition of wildlife protection groups, including Born Free USA, Help Our Wolves Live and Friends of Animals and Their Environment, filed suit against the USFWS’s premature December 2011 delisting decision. The decision threatened the fragile remnants of the gray wolf population by confining wolves to a small area in the Great Lakes region—where state politicians and agency officials have rushed forward with reckless killing programs that threaten wolves with the very same practices that pushed them to the brink of extinction in the first place.

Jonathan Lovvorn, senior vice president and chief counsel for animal protection litigation at The HSUS, said, “In the short time since federal protections have been removed, trophy hunters and trappers have killed more than 1,500 Great Lakes wolves under hostile state management programs that encourage dramatic reductions in wolf populations. We are pleased that the court has recognized that the basis for the delisting decision was flawed, and would stop wolf recovery in its tracks.”

In its 111-page ruling, the court chided the USFWS for failing to explain why it ignored the potential for further recovery of wolves into areas of its historic range that remain viable habitat for the species.  The court also noted that the USFWS has failed to explain how the “virtually unregulated” killing of wolves by states in the Great Lakes region does not constitute a continued threat to the species.

Following federal delisting, Wisconsin and Minnesota rushed to enact emergency regulations to allow the first public hunting and trapping seasons in the Great Lakes region in more than 40 years. The states authorized some of the most abusive and unsporting practices, including hound hunting, snares, baiting, electronic calls and the use of leg hold traps. Wisconsin’s wolf hunt ended this year after killing 154 wolves – 80 percent of them in leghold traps. And in Minnesota, 272 gray wolves were killed – 84 percent of the wolves in this year’s late season were trapped.

The Michigan legislature also passed three separate laws to designate wolves as a game species, in its zeal to allow the state to authorize a trophy hunting and trapping season for wolves, and to undermine a fair election by Michigan voters on wolf hunting. However, in response to a referendum campaign launched by The HSUS and other animal welfare and conservation groups and Native American tribes, the 2014 wolf hunt was canceled and voters in Michigan soundly rejected sport hunting of wolves in the recent November election.

Despite rhetoric from state politicians about wolf depredation of livestock, a new study of 25 years of wolf data has shown that hunting wolves may increase livestock losses.  Michigan lawmakers relied on false stories about wolves to push through a hunting season, and had to apologize for misleading statements.

Today’s ruling by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia follows another ruling by the same court in September that rejected the USFWS’s decision to delist wolves in the State of Wyoming. The HSUS was also a plaintiff in the Wyoming litigation.

The plaintiffs in the Great Lakes lawsuit were represented in the case by Schiff Hardin, LLP and attorneys within The HSUS’ Animal Protection Litigation section.

 

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Great Lakes Wolf Patrol – WOLF PATROL LAUNCHES REWARD PROGRAM IN RESPONSE TO WOLF POACHING IN MICHIGAN   Leave a comment

From:  GoFundMe

UPDATE #36

December 11: A Michigan based group, Great Lakes Wolf Patrol announced today that it was offering a $1,500.00 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of anyone who illegally kills a wolf in Michigan, Wisconsin or Minnesota. The announcement comes in response to recent wolf killings in the Upper Peninsula and an upsurge in Facebook sites that promote illegal wolf killing, such as “Wisconsin Wolf Hunt & Wisconsin Wolf Hunting” whose public comment logs encourage readers to “SSS” (Shoot, shovel and shut-up) and kill wolves out of season.

Organization members will be circulating reward posters in the areas where two dead wolves were recently found near Newberry and the the town of Gulliver with the hope that the cash reward will provide an incentive for residents to come forward. “We want to assist Michigan and other states’ conservation officers in their investigations of illegal wolf killing.” said Rod Coronado, the group’s founder.

Great Lakes Wolf Patrol was founded this year to document and investigate the recreational hunting of gray wolves in Montana and Wisconsin. The group monitor’s hunters and trappers during each state’s wolf hunting seasons and worked with Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources this Fall to investigate illegal wolf trapping during the October hunt. Last week, Wolf Patrol members documented this nation’s only hound hunt for wolves in northern Wisconsin.

Video footage of their monitoring projects is available online at: wolf patrol.org and Facebook:
Wolf Patrol.

WANTED
Information leading to the arrest and conviction of poachers responsible for killing wolves in Mackinac and Schoolcraft Counties.

On 11/26/14, a wolf that had been shot, was dumped near the Mackinac-Luce County line, southwest of the town of Newberry. In a separate incident, a radio-collared wolf that was part of a wildlife study was killed, and its collar disposed of, near Gulliver in Doyle Township.

A reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of the subject or subjects involved. Anyone with any possible information on these cases is asked to call the Report All Poaching Hotline at 800-292-7800, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, or to contact their local DNR office or conservation officer. Information may be left anonymously. Callers may remain anonymous and still be eligible to receive a reward.

Contacts: Debbie Munson Badini, 906-226-1352 or Lt. Skip Hagy, 906-293-5131, ext. 4100, MI DNR

*$1,500 REWARD*
*In addition to any reward offered through the Michigan DNR reward program. Great Lakes Wolf Patrol will pay $1,500 for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of anyone who illegal kills a wolf in the state of Michigan.

 


 

Friends of the Wolf,
My name is Rod Coronado and I’ve organized the only citizen monitoring project in the nation, whose aim is to document and lobby to end the recreational hunting of gray wolves in the Great Lakes region. We are a 100% volunteer group comprised of citizens from all walks of life, who are united in our opposition to the state management of wolves.

Our goal this Fall is to document the Wisconsin wolf hunt, which begins on October 15th. We will be present in the field with not only our own documentation crew, but two independent video journalists as well who are working on international news stories. We also support the indigenous nations of the Great Lakes, who are united in their opposition to the wolf hunt.

With your support, we will repeat what we were able to achieve in Montana this September, where we generated national media attention on the recreational killing of wolves outside of Yellowstone National Park (see Yellowstone Wolf Patrol, or our website/Facebook sites: wolfpatrol.org and Wolf Patrol) Our aim is to create a citizen-led movement dedicated to monitoring public activities on our public lands. We do not believe that wolf recovery has been achieved, and are greatly concerned that state management of wolves is dangerously reducing wolf populations to levels that could once again, threaten their viable existence in their traditional territory in the lower 48 states.

We need funds to pay primarily for our transportation costs and food to maintain an encampment in Wisconsin’s wolf hunt zones, where we will remain as long as our support can be maintained. Please consider joining our campaign by supporting this project so the wolves of the Great Lakes will have physical representation for the duration of the 2014-15 wolf hunting season.

GREAT LAKES WOLF PATROL IS A LEGAL COALITION OF CITIZENS COMMITTED TO NONVIOLENT OBSERVATION, DOCUMENTATION AND MONITORING OF PUBLIC POLICIES ON PUBLIC LANDS. WE DO NOT INTEND TO HARASS OR INTERFERE WITH WISCONISIN DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES PERSONNEL OR LAW-ABIDING HUNTERS.

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Female wolf travels hundreds of miles to northern Arizona   1 comment

From:  Deseret News

By Felicia Fonseca, Associated Press

Published: Friday, Nov. 21 2014 7:49 p.m. MST

Updated: Friday, Nov. 21 2014 7:49 p.m. MST

Wildlife officials have confirmed the first gray wolf in northern Arizona in more than 70 years.

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — A female gray wolf from the Northern Rockies traveled hundreds of miles into northern Arizona, marking the species’ first appearance in the region in more than 70 years and the farthest journey south, wildlife officials confirmed Friday.

A wolf-like animal had been spotted roaming the North Rim of the Grand Canyon and the adjacent national forest since last month. Biologists collected its scat and sent it to a University of Idaho laboratory for testing, verifying what environmentalists had suspected based on its appearance and a radio collar around its neck.

“The corroboration is really good to get,” said Michael Robinson of the Center for Biological Diversity.

Biologists don’t know the wolf’s age or from where it traveled. The radio collar wasn’t transmitting a signal, and cold weather forced biologists to suspended efforts to capture the animal and replace the collar.

The Idaho lab might be able to glean more details about the wolf from its DNA, but U.S. Fish and Wildlife spokesman Jeff Humphrey said that could take several weeks or months.

“We’ll let this wolf be a wolf where it’s at, and if it decides it’s going to move back north, it can do that,” he said. “Or if somebody joins her, then that’s nature taking its course.”

Wolves often roam vast distances in search of food and mates. But the farther they go, the less likely they are to find a mate, said Ed Bangs, who led recovery efforts for wolves in the Northern Rockies over two decades before retiring from the Fish and Wildlife Service in 2011.

“It’s looking for love,” he said. “It leaves the core population and doesn’t know the love of its life is going to be right over the next hill, so it just keeps traveling.”

About 25 percent of the roughly 1,700 wolves from the Northern Rockies are being tracked, wildlife officials said. They are distinguished from the Mexican gray wolves found in the Southwest by their more full bodies and less pointed ears.

Mike Jimenez with the Fish and Wildlife Service in Wyoming said Northern Rockies gray wolves are hard-wired to disperse and have traveled hundreds of miles. One young female started off in Montana and traveled 3,000 miles over six months, making stops in Wyoming, Idaho, Utah and Colorado before it died, he said. Colorado had been the farthest journey south for the animals until the female was confirmed in Arizona, he said.

Wolves from another major population in the western Great Lakes have likewise been found far from home.

Wolves largely were exterminated early last century across the lower 48 states, except in the western Great Lakes area. The Northern Rockies population was restored after 66 gray wolves from Canada were relocated to central Idaho and Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming in the mid-1990s.

They’ve been absent from the Grand Canyon region since the 1940s.

The Fish and Wildlife Service in recent years lifted federal protections for the animals in the western Great Lakes and the Northern Rockies. A federal judge recently ordered the protections re-instated in Wyoming after wildlife advocates sued.

Environmentalists are pressing for continued protection of gray wolves. Meanwhile, they celebrated the news of the one in northern Arizona.

“I wonder if she has any sense of the celebrity she has achieved,” said Drew Kerr of WildEarth Guardians.

Associated Press writer Matthew Brown in Billings, Montana, contributed to this report.

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