A Tribute to 06 – The Famous Alpha Wolf – By Rick Lamplugh

The Yellowstone wolf called 06 was appreciated by thousands of visitors. In December of 2012 she was shot outside the park in Wyoming. This tribute celebrates her leadership and presents a way to honor her spirit. (Photo by Leo Leckie.) Rick Lamplugh writes to protect wildlife and preserve wildlands. His new book, Deep into Yellowstone: A Year’s Immersion in Grandeur and Controversy, is available signed from Rick at bit.ly/2tIEt62, or unsigned on Amazon: amzn.to/2tgPU3E. His best seller, In the Temple of Wolves, is available signed at bit.ly/1gYghB4, or unsigned on Amazon at amzn.to/Jpea9Q.

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Wolfdog Radio Presents: John Robb, DVM – Vaccines and Controversy

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Join Wolfdog Radio on Tuesday November 21, 2017 for an in-depth interview with Dr. John Robb by our Hosts, George Stapleton and Sky Phoenix.

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Courtesy of Prortectthepets.com:  “Dr. John Robb is a respected doctor of veterinary medicine from Connecticut. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of California at Davis in 1981 and his DVM from that same institution in 1985. Dr. Robb began his practice at New Haven Central Veterinary Hospital. He purchased the New Fairfield Veterinary Hospital in 1988, renaming it the Robb Animal Care Center in 1997. It was at this practice that Dr. Robb first established Community Appreciation Days, when he offered free exams and vaccinations to people who could not ordinarily afford veterinary care.

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In 2007, Dr. Robb bought and ran Farmington Valley Emergency Hospital in Avon, Connecticut. There Dr. Robb treated every pet regardless of the owners financial situation. It was a 24-hour care facility for critically ill pets. Dr. Robb sold the 24-hour care facility in 2008 to BrightHeart Veterinary Company and bought a franchise from Banfield Pet Hospital. It was while at Banfield that Dr. Robb came up against the Veterinary Establishment represented by the Mars Candy Bar Company. Mars put profits first and pet lives second. In addition, Mars began an illegal process to dissolve franchise agreements and gain control of all 900 Banfield hospitals.

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Dr. Robb could not be bought or blackmailed. Mars terminated the franchise agreement at Dr. Robbs Banfield Hospital in Stamford, Connecticut, with no compensation. Mars threatened to report Dr. Robb to the State Board of Veterinary Medicine if he wouldnt go quietly. Dr. Robb told Mars that he, not Mars and not the Connecticut State Board, had the right to choose what volume of rabies vaccine he injected into a pet. From this beginning has come a worldwide movement to protect the pets by amending the rabies laws to honor the measuring of circulating antibodies: namely, a blood titer as the true indicator of immunity! Throughout his career Dr. Robb has held an unwavering commitment to pets over profits. He has experienced first-hand the toxic effect of the drive for productivity and profitability on animal care. His unwillingness to observe the unspoken rules among veterinarians that emphasize protecting the vet over protecting the pet has earned him the love and respect of pet owners. While some in the industry want to silence him, he has become a voice and a leader for the many animal care professionals who want to live their passion and provide the very best in care to our animal companions.  Read more about Dr. Robb at www.protectthepets.com.

For your veterinarians:   http://www.protectthepets.com/uploads/1/0/8/0/108023613/for_your_veterinarianksdl_detailed_instructions.pdf

THE SCIENCE (PLEASE READ THESE PAPERS!!)

DOSAAGES ARE LINEAR BY WEIGHT FOR VACCINES

 DOSAGE CHART

Risk factors for inadequate antibody response to primary rabies vaccination in dogs under one year of age

Adverse Events Diagnosed Within Three Days

Read more about the science behind Dr. Robb’s stand…

National Park Service debating wolf reintroduction on Isle Royale – STILL.

http://www.fox9.com/news/national-park-service-debating-wolf-reintroduction-on-isle-royale
 

– Isle Royale sits like a gem in a cold ring of Lake Superior water, some 15 miles off the shore of Grand Portage, Minnesota. Its isolation has been key to the island’s preservation. It sits today as a national park, not much different from when Norwegian fisherman built the first fish camps on its shores in the mid-1800’s.

A pristine island of some 210 square miles, it was a privilege to visit. To see the young bull moose swimming across a bay on our boat trip in or to come face to face with this cow moose freezing us in our steps on an island trail, was to experience nature unencumbered by man.

Time spent on the island allows you to slow down and think of the world in simpler terms. That is until you consider the very complicated national debate over reintroducing wolves to Isle Royale.

WWF-Norway is suing the State, demands a revised Wolf Management Plan.

https://www.wwf.no/?54665%2FWWF-takes-the-Norwegian-state-to-court-to-save-the-wolves

“Enough is enough. We have tried everything else. The culling is against the law and must be stopped before it is too late to save a critically endangered species”, said Ingrid Lomelde, Policy Director at WWF-Norway.

The Norwegian management of wolves goes against the constitution, the Biodiversity Act and the Bern Convention and now the courts must decide whether it has to be changed, stated WWF-Norway. The organization has provided a subpoena of the state to the Oslo District Court.

– “The current situation is a catastrophe for the critically endangered wolf – and an embarrassment to Norway as a self-proclaimed environmental champion”, said Lomelde.

No time to wait
In addition to demanding that the Norwegian wolf management must take into consideration national laws and international obligations, WWF-Norway also demands a temporary injunction of this season´s culling in order to stop it immediately.

– “We cannot sit and watch the authorities allow an unlawful culling of one of our most endangered carnivores. That is why we have sent a subpoena to the Oslo District court. To sue the state is a serious step, which could also entail a substantial economic risk to us, but the culling has started and we cannot wait for more wolves to be killed”, said Lomelde.

Five wolves shot
Norwegian carnivore authorities have decided that a total of 50 wolves can be culled this winter. This equals about 90 percent of the wolves that permanently reside in Norway. These 50 wolves live both inside and outside of the politically established wolf zone. Initially it is the wolves outside the zone that can be culled. This culling started October 1 – so far six wolves have been shot. Whether wolves living inside the zone can be culled is an issue to be decided by the Department of Climate and Environment before the end of this year.

– “We cannot wait for the department to decide. The ongoing hunt must be stopped immediately and the whole of the wolf management must be tried before the courts. Every year the same thing happens: the management authorities decide on an extensive culling while WWF and others file complaints. Together with organizations such as Friends of the Earth Norway, NOAH, Foreningen Våre Rovdyr and Sabima we fight the same battle every year. We cannot continue this way, we need a sustainable carnivore management that ensures the long-term survival of the wolf population”, said Lomelde.

Want to support the court case? Read more here.

Wolf statue given to school by graduating students for school mascot.

http://www.draperjournal.com/2017/11/03/159190/beloved-wolf-statue-given-to-school-by-graduating-students#.WgHTfJ9yc3I.facebook

This fall, several students pet Koda, their metal-cast statue of their wolf mascot. The statue was a gift from the eighth-grade graduating class last spring.

In the second year graduating classes have given gifts to the school, parent Jen Hymas helped students bring the statue to the school.

“An eighth-grade teacher saw the statue and mentioned it to the students when they were brainstorming ideas,” she said. “When it was decided, I picked it up and brought it to the school. Eventually, it will be cemented and placed in front of the school.”

Channing Hall graduating student Ethan Mouser presented the statue to the school at the commencement exercises. The previous year, the eighth-grade class gave a buddy bench to the school in memory of their classmate Tomas Hollenbach, who died of brain stem glioma, a form of brain cancer.

Channing Hall selected the wolf as its mascot early in the school’s 11-year history, said Heather Shepherd, head of the school.

“Channing is an old French and Anglo-Saxon name that means ‘wisdom,’ ‘wise one’ and ‘young wolf,’” Shepherd said. “Native American mythology regard the wolf as the tribe’s greatest teacher; the forerunner of new knowledge who leaves the tribe to learn and discover and returns to share insight and wisdom. As a natural extension of ‘Channing’ as our school name, the young wolf is our school mascot. The young wolf mascot stands as an enduring symbol of discovery, mastery, insight and wisdom as we foster individuals who are intellectually agile — responding and contributing to a changing world.”

It was during the school’s third year that students nominated names for their mascot. Koda won in a vote over the two other names, she said.

Shepherd said that graduating gifts to the school will become a tradition and credits the school’s parent organization, CHAPS, for making it happen.

“Our students come visit after they graduate but looking at the eighth-grade gifts makes sure they are remembered daily,” she said.

Legal agreement halts federal killing of predators in Colorado

, jmarmaduke@coloradoan.comPublished 12:00 p.m. MT Nov. 7, 2017 | Updated 2:23 p.m. MT Nov. 7, 2017

A federal program hit pause this week on its involvement in Colorado predator-killing plans

Wildlife Services, a United States Department of Agriculture program, was tasked with killing Colorado mountain lions and black bears as part of two Colorado Parks and Wildlife plans.

But conservationist groups sued over the federal government’s involvement in state plans, and it’s unclear whether CPW can continue to kill predators without Wildlife Services help.

In a legal agreement with the conservationist groups, which was made public on Monday, Wildlife Services agreed to conduct a new environmental analysis of the plans by Aug. 1, 2018, and not kill any bears or mountain lions in the meantime.

The predator control plans are meant to boost dwindling mule deer population in the Piceance Basin and Upper Arkansas River areas.

CPW and Wildlife Services began trapping and killing predators this year in a 500-square-mile area west of Rifle and a 2,370-square-mile area in south-central Colorado. CPW hasn’t shared how many animals have been killed.

 

The Piceance Basin plan allows wildlife crews to capture up to 15 mountain lions and 25 black bears annually for three years using cage traps, culvert traps, foot snares and hunting dogs, then shoot them, according to CPW documents. The Upper Arkansas plan allows crews to trap and kill an unspecified number of mountain lions over a nine-year period.

CPW spokeswoman Lauren Truitt declined to comment on whether killing will continue without federal involvement, saying CPW hasn’t reviewed statements about the lawsuit. Wildlife Services representatives didn’t return a phone call from the Coloradoan requesting clarification, and Matthew Bishop of the Western Environmental Law Center said he’s unsure whether killing will continue.

 

Wildlife Services’ new environmental analysis will consider environmental impacts of the predator control plans and their alternatives, Bishop said.

“This agreement represents a sign of good faith moving forward to do the right thing when it comes to Colorado’s wildlife and ecosystems,” he said in a statement. “It’s a big swing to go from deciding to ignore the best available science to halting potentially harmful wildlife killing while improving the science.”

Plaintiffs in the lawsuit, including the Western Environmental Law Center, WildEarth Guardians and Center for Biological Diversity, argue predators aren’t to blame for the dwindling mule deer population in Colorado. They point instead to habitat infringement by oil and gas development. 

But CPW research indicates that predation, not oil and gas development, is the major cause of shrinking mule deer population in the two predator control plan areas, officials previously told the Coloradoan.

The state’s mule deer population currently sits at about 80 percent of wildlife managers’ desired population of 560,000.

Wildlife Services has also agreed not to use or fund the use of M-44 sodium cyanide capsules — so-called “cyanide bombs” — on public lands in Colorado. The conservationist groups alleged earlier this year that the traps, meant to protect livestock from predators, kill wildlife and pets indiscriminately, the Associated Press reported.

CPW and U.S. Department of Agriculture spokeswomen told the Associated Press the traps haven’t been used on public lands in decades.

http://www.coloradoan.com/story/news/2017/11/07/legal-agreement-halts-federal-wildlife-services-killing-predators-colorado/837833001/

Renowned wolf biologist casts doubt on hunter’s story of attack.

http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017171109919#.WgD12LczcoI.facebook

Wolf expert Carter Niemeyer trapped, collared, tracked and sometimes shot wolves during a long career with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

A retired U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist with 30 years experience said it is unlikely a wolf shot by an Oregon elk hunter was attacking the man.

Carter Niemeyer, who lives in Boise and oversaw or consulted on wolf recovery work throughout the West, also said descriptions of the bullet trajectory — in one shoulder and out the other – raise doubt about the hunter’s account that the wolf was running at him when he fired.

“That’s a broadside shot, not a running-at-you shot,” Niemeyer said. “If the bullet path is through one side and out the other, it indicates to me an animal could have been standing, not moving, and the shot was well placed.”

A bullet that hit the wolf as it was running forward most likely would have exited out the hips or rear end, Niemeyer said. He acknowledge the bullet or fragments could have deflected off bone, but said a forensic exam would have to explain that. Michelle Dennehy, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife spokesman, said the agency did not request a necropsy because the cause of death — gunshot — was known.

Niemeyer said the hunter’s account of taking a “snap shot into a ball of fur” is unlikely.

“I have to tell you I doubt the story,” he said.

Niemeyer, 70, said he’s hunted predators for 52 years as a government hunter and a taxidermist, and has dealt with fellow sportsmen and shooters for decades. “I’ve heard every story,” he said. “This story is very suspect to me.”

The elk hunter, Brian Scott, 38, of Clackamas, Ore., told Oregon State Police that the wolf ran straight at him. Scott told police he screamed, took quick aim and fired his 30.06 rifle once. Scott said he saw nothing but fur in the rifle’s scope as the wolf ran at him, according to published reports.

In an interview with outdoor writer Bill Monroe of The Oregonian/Oregon Live, Scott said he was terrified.

“People envision this jerk hunter out to kill anything, but that’s not me,” he told Monroe. “It frustrates me they don’t understand. I’m a meat hunter. I was looking for a spike elk. This wasn’t exciting. It ruined my hunt.”

Scott told Monroe he didn’t think he had time to fire a warning shot. He could not explain the bullet’s path, which entered the wolf’s right shoulder and exited the left, other than perhaps the wolf turned at the last instant or the bullet deflected.

Niemeyer, the retired wildlife biologist, said wolves will “turn around and take off” when they realize they’re near a human. Niemeyer said he had “many, many close encounters with wolves” while doing trapping, collaring and other field work for USFWS in Idaho, Oregon and elsewhere. He said wolves sometimes ran at him and approached within 6 to 8 feet before veering away.

Wolves are potentially dangerous, he said, “but all my experience tells me it would be fearful of a human.”

People in such situations should stand up if they are concealed, show themselves, and yell or throw things, Niemeyer said. Hunters could fire a shot into the ground or into a tree and “scare the hell out of them,” he said.

“That would have been the first logical thing to do,” he said. “The gunshot and a yell from a human would turn every wolf I’ve ever known inside out trying to get away.”

He also suggested people venturing into the woods should carry bear repellent spray, which certainly would also deter wolves, cougars or coyotes.

“If everyone shoots everything they’re afraid of, wow, that’s not a good thing,” he said.

Niemeyer acknowledged his reaction is based on years of experience with wolves.

“People say, ‘That’s easy for you to say, Carter, you worked with wolves for 30 years and you’re familiar with their behavior,’” he said.

The shooting happened Oct. 27 in ODFW’s Starkey Wildlife Management Unit west of La Grande, in Northeast Oregon.

Scott, the hunter, told police he was hunting and had intermittently seen what he thought might be coyotes. At one point, two of them circled off to the side while a third ran at him. Scott said he shot that one and the others ran away.

Scott went back to his hunting camp and told companions what had happened. They returned to the shooting scene and concluded the dead animal was a wolf. The hunter then notified state police and ODFW, which investigated. Police later found a shell casing 27 yards from the wolf carcass. The Union County district attorney’s office reviewed the case and chose not to file charges.

The Portland-based conservation group Oregon Wild raised questions about the incident. Rob Klavins, Oregon Wild’s field representative in Northeast Oregon, said he’s seen wolves in the wild several times and backed away without trouble or harm. Even the late OR-4, the fearsome breeding male of the infamous Imnaha Pack in Wallowa County, retreated and barked when it encountered Klavins and a hiking party.

“This (hunter) may have felt fear, but since wolves returned to Oregon, no one has so much as been licked by a wolf, and that’s still true today,” Klavins said.

“What has changed is we now have wolves on the landscape, 10 years ago we didn’t,” Klavins said. “Especially in the fall (hunting season), armed people are going to be out encountering wolves.”

Oregon Wild believes poachers have killed several Oregon wolves, and USFWS on Nov. 6 offered a $5,000 reward for information about a collared wolf designated OR-25 that was found dead Oct. 29 in South Central Oregon.

Klavins said wolf shooters might now use a “self-defense” claim as a “free pass to poaching.”

From the Den of Erika Burns Andres:

Experience.

Experience is who we are. It is what makes us, forever teaching and molding us and ruling our view points, and emotions, and our knowledge, and communication skills.

Experience, when learned from, and applied; helps us to become better people in this world if we apply the lessons from the experience, and comprehend the experience.

In my personal journey with wolfdogs and wolfdog community, I have learned that it is a journey of continued learning. This journey occurs online and offline.

I have found it best to stay humble, and try to keep in mind that we are all students. I was a breeder before Facebook times. This made online a peak of the desired education of  the things I wanted to learn further. 

I figured out quick it was going to be an experience to learn from, but  I would have to learn by tuning out the distractions that come with it.

The first Facebook wolfdog I ever saw was (Loki), that belonged to Cindy Matthews. I recall going wow that is one of the best wolfdogs I have ever seen. 

He looked so much like the very first one I saw in my childhood at age 6. The one I saw at age 6 was my first inspiration. However Loki was my first online inspiration. 

Later I recall seeing pictures of (Shango) that belongs to Sharon Green it was love at first site again. My goal was to always breed down in content, then back up.

However, the very first two wolfdogs I saw on Facebook became inspirations for me to try and mold and mimic far as looks. It never happen, but lead me to the very looks so many see today from us. 

I recalled learning why wolf hybrids were now called wolfdogs. We always called them hybrids in the 90’s, the online wdc educated and explained why wolves and dogs do not produce hybrids. 

This took some adjusting to far as using the correct terms. But eventually I settled to be politically correct. I recall thinking to myself , I need to mold my animals like this one or that one. But found I kept getting distracted in education with arguments and unwanted drama being new to Facebook.

So my next focus was, (who do I want to be like and get more of a productive experience) ? And this is not to offend anyone. But I wanted to be like Sharon Green.  She educated , but was never biased, never really took part in drama, or attacks on people. And would ask questions in further learning. This gave me a guide as to what personality is the best way to learn, and still be able to coexist with as many in the wolf dog community as possible. 

Aside from the obvious education, a few things I learned were as follows.

Never assume just because people say something is fact. 

Get to know people on a more personal level.

In most cases, never give up hope that people can change.

Approach is essential to education.

Remain humble, and never be afraid to ask questions.

Educational experience goes better when we educate with genuine concern.

I  try to keep in mind that we don’t truly know others back ground, genetic influences, or life circumstances that influence their thinking or learning process.

I learned to be greatful for any progress fellow owners may venture to make, as humans have free will. They don’ have to do anything or any change. So when we see that change acknowledge it.

I have met so many that have influenced me in my journey of betterment. 

I have met some that are models as to what I do not want to be. And others that I have seen a love, a passion, a logic that serves as all id like to embody.

I have seen so many change for the better, and while I don’t know what changed their heart, aside from gaining a true love for wolfdogs and fellow owners. I can say that I feel education and the experience of the wolfdog community is indeed getting better for new comers to remain unbiased, focused on education, and in turn better in education than those before.

We now have even more to learn. Genetic testing such as Embark, is a new look into wolfdogs that gives insight far deeper than pheno ever could. So once again it is something to have to comprehend and learn more about and expound in education from there. For me it has been a learning experience from the time the wolfdog community began to embrace it. So now I have a mental check list to aide in my experience of the wolfdog community. 

1. Analyse for positive logic and learning.

2. Practice good human relation skills.

3. Find someone who conducts themselves in a way you coincide with to be a positive asset to the wolfdog community, and by example encourages you.

4. Never feel content. As it slows learning and evolving for betterment.

5. Ask questions, and fact check the answers.

6. Have genuine concern.

7. Recognize your gifts and stick to those as we all have various gifts. When we try to go beyond our gifts it can mess up education for others.

8. Learn about wolves and wolfdogs and all the core basic essentials. 

9. Learn from the mistakes of others as well as my own past.

10. Learn about Embark and what it means for wolfdogs, and what it means for previous education and future education. And what it means for a breeder and their breeding program. And learn how it can be a rescues dream come true. For even more informed placement. 

11. Try to keep in mind just as much as we love our animals , try to offer the same genuine love for your fellow humans. Lack of compassion for our own kind is not natural, but should never be limited. I’ve figured out many humans have that issue. But I can’t judge because I really had a pretty good upbringing that taught me to do these things. I do fall short at times for logical reasons.

12. Just because some articulate better than others, it is best to consider the message than the format. Example; If a person says, (wow the stratus clouds look divine). That is wonderful and educated indeed. However; if another member says, ( The thinner clouds are very pretty).  It is the same concept just written in two different formats that say the same thing. Education is not governed by articulation alone, but knowledge. Always consider the facts behind the knowledge, regardless of format.

13. Get to know members on a personal level,it will save a lot of heart break, and you might just make a great friend or two in the process.

I have tried to make all these things into a checklist to be a better member, better educator, better breeder. And a better friend. 

In the process of going by this guide, I have met rescues that were so nice and logical. That care so much about the animals. I have made some really awesome friends along the way as well. I have met many, but I swear I knew Samantha Tambor in a past life. It’s like I went to school with her or something. It’s honestly hard to explain. If anyone can get through to me and make since of things that don’t add up to me, it’s her. 

There are others that have a place in my heart as well. And have helped so much with my education and experience in the wolfdog community. Kim Miles, Jerry Mills, Kat Woldancer, Janice Mcguire, the late Donald Lewis, My customers/friends, Juan Cypress Creek. Bobby B and I use to talk years ago, I actually like him. Though his experience has made him become very reserved. 

Certain people’s drive has also inspired me. Back when there were forums Cindy was like an investigator I learned much from her research. Christa Ward was the first to try and understand my program with breeding lows. And actually made me feel she really was asking for the right reasons. She was the first ever I shared my goals with. 

I was always totally terrified of rescue views. Rescues that changed my mind that rescuers can be logical and have a heart based on logic love and compassion for the animals and people were as follows.

Natasha Handcock
Nancy Brown
Justine T
Sonia S
Connie Howard
John Deboard
Malinda S
Melissa Greene 
Stephanie A
Deborah S
John Smith

There are others as well, but those names come to mind first.

Passion for education is as follows

Greg Largent 
Deanna M
Samantha Tambor
Natasha Handcock
Kim Miles
Jody Haynes
Rose P
Kat Wolfdancer
Richard Vickers
George S
Laura Loft
Stephanie Alcorn

There are so many I can’t name them all. As I continue this journey the above guidelines of learned experience is what has made my journey of experience positive, educational, and perception changers. I hope to continue to learn more, and see us all change for the betterment of each other, the betterment of wolfdogs and the future of wolfdogs. I hope that my place in the community online and offline can be a positive one and others may learn from it. If I could say any meaningful advice, it would be to love equally. The rest will work itself out if that one key factor is truly followed. Forgive equally. The biggest challenge of the wolfdog community is the wolfdog community.  I look forward to the day all can truly see that. 

Animal Advocate of the Year Named at ‘Bark & Wine’ Fundraiser

http://pagosadailypost.com/2017/11/03/animal-advocate-of-the-year-named-at-bark-wine-fundraiser-gala/



 

La Plata County Humane Society (LPCHS) announced the recipient of the 2017 Animal Advocate of the Year –  Paula Woerner, Owner and Director of Wolfwood Refuge. The award was announced at the LPCHS annual fundraiser, the Bark and Wine event, held at the Doubletree Hotel October 28.

“We were so honored to present the 2017 Animal Advocate of the Year to Paula Woerner. Wolfwood is the result of Paula’s deep passion and determination to care for wolves and wolf-hybrids from all over the country. Her commitment to our community, our youth, and to educating all of us about wolves is invaluable. She is a true hero to all of the animals who come into her care.” – Michelle Featheringill, Executive Director.

Wolfwood Refuge is a wolf and wolf-hybrid sanctuary, which began in 1995 when Paula rescued her first wolf, Winslow.

Wolfwood is a wonderful sanctuary of wolf-habitat enclosures, located in Ignacio, Colorado. Paula and her amazing team of volunteers have taken in wolves and wolf-hybrids from all over the country, including the “Alaska 9” pack. Currently, 60 animals call Wolfwood home and each lives in a habitat suitable to their individual needs; although no animal lives alone. Many of the animals arrive with injuries and behavioral issues, which are treated and rehabilitated. All of the residents of Wolfwood live out their lives in a peaceful and beautiful refuge.

The incredible work done on behalf of wolves, as well as Paula’s natural teaching abilities, have made Wolfwood truly a must-visit animal sanctuary. Paula does provide tours at no-cost to visitors, and is a wonderful community partner, working with other non-profits in our region. As she never charges fees for visitors to Wolfwood, the sanctuary is supported through generous donations from many supporters.

 

 

Legal Victory Guarantees Analysis of Wildlife Services’ Killings in Northern California

https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/press_releases/2017/wildlife-services-11-01-2017.php.    Coyote photo by Tom Koerner, USFWS.

In response to a lawsuit filed by wildlife advocacy groups, a San Francisco federal court today approved a settlement requiring the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Services to implement numerous protections for wildlife in Northern California, including a ban on traps and aerial gunning in designated “wilderness areas.”

Today’s settlement also requires Wildlife Services to analyze the environmental impacts of its killing of coyotes, bobcats and other wildlife in 16 counties in Northern California.

The ironically named Wildlife Services is a multimillion-dollar federal program that uses painful leghold traps, strangulation snares, poisons and aerial gunning to kill wolves, coyotes, cougars, birds and other wild animals — primarily to benefit the agriculture and livestock industries.

“This is a big victory for California wildlife targeted by this federal program’s horrifically destructive war on animals,” said Collette Adkins, a Center for Biological Diversity attorney representing the conservation groups involved in the lawsuit. “We’ve saved hundreds of animals that would have suffered and died in traps set by Wildlife Services over the next several years. That feels really good.”

Under the court order approved today, Wildlife Services must provide, by the end of 2023, an “environmental impact statement” that analyzes the effects and risks of its wildlife-killing program in California’s North District. The North District includes Butte, Del Norte, Glenn, Humboldt, Lassen, Mendocino, Modoc, Nevada, Plumas, Shasta, Sierra, Siskiyou, Sutter, Tehama, Trinity and Yuba counties.

Pending completion of that study, which will include robust public commenting opportunities, the court order imposes several measures to protect wildlife in the North District. It bans the use of M-44 cyanide devices, den fumigants and lead ammunition. It bans aerial gunning and any use of body-gripping traps, such as strangulation snares and steel-jaw leghold traps, in designated wilderness and wilderness study areas. The order also requires Wildlife Services to implement several measures to protect California’s endangered gray wolves from being accidentally killed in traps set for other carnivores. These measures include a ban on Conibear traps and non-breakaway snares in areas used by the wolves.

“Wolves are just starting to return to their native habitats in Northern California, and this settlement provides needed interim protections to protect wolves while a detailed environmental study examines whether lethal wildlife ‘management’ options should even be on the table,” said Kristin Ruether of Western Watersheds Project. “It is long past time that federal agencies stop the killing of native wildlife at the behest of the livestock industry, and ultimately we hope that the added public scrutiny will force a shift to nonlethal options.”

Last year Wildlife Services reported killing 1.6 million native animals nationwide. In California alone this total included 3,893 coyotes, 142 foxes, 83 black bears, 18 bobcats and thousands of other creatures. Nontarget animals — including protected wildlife such as wolves, Pacific fisher and eagles — are at risk from Wildlife Services’ indiscriminate methods.

“For over two decades, Wildlife Services has relied on cruel and outdated methods, such as steel-jaw leghold traps, in California — despite a statewide ban on private use of such devices,” said Tara Zuardo, Animal Welfare Institute wildlife attorney. “Today’s decision from the court ensures the environmental analysis of the program’s killing of wildlife will receive a much-needed update. California wildlife deserves this protection.”

“Wildlife Services’ lethal ‘control’ is ineffective, wasteful and cruel,” said Michelle Lute, wildlife coexistence campaigner for WildEarth Guardians. “We are changing this clandestine government program state-by-state until wildlife and people are safe on our public lands.”

“With this victory for wildlife we have demonstrated that Wildlife Services has failed to use the best available science and continues to rely on ecologically destructive and ethically indefensible management practices,” said Camilla Fox, founder and executive director of Project Coyote. “It is past time that this rogue agency shifts to more effective, humane, and ecologically sound ways of reducing conflicts between wildlife and agricultural interests.”

“Thousands of California wildlife will now have a much needed reprieve from the federal killing agency,” said Animal Legal Defense Fund Executive Director Stephen Wells. “This settlement sends the powerful message that Wildlife Services’ indiscriminate killing programs will not go unchallenged.”

The victory announced today is the result of a lawsuit filed in June by the Center for Biological Diversity, Western Watersheds Project, the Animal Legal Defense Fund, Project Coyote, the Animal Welfare Institute and WildEarth Guardians.