Thursday, November 13, 2008

Wolf Protections Under Attack Again

So, Sarah Palin has returned to Alaska and will not be taking the title of V.P. in January; however, we must not forget about her. She is still Alaska's governor, and she will still launch attacks on wolves.

Next up is Obama to move into the White House in January and to become America's first black president. While he appears to be friendlier toward the environment and wildlife, how will his financial policies affect all of us? If America has put in a more environmentally responsible president but that president is not so socially or people friendly (think finances, taxes, your net pay, and consequently, your ability to fund the causes that you believe in), how are we any better off?

Time will tell. As for me, I would like to know where my hard-earned money is going, and I want to be the one who chooses who my money helps. Of particular concern to me is my continued ability to support Defenders of Wildlife and Earthjustice in their efforts to protect wildlife, in particular, wolves at this time. If I'm being taxed more than I am now, it will be like receiving a paycut, and if I'm bringing home less money, how can I afford to continue to fund causes that matter to me? I am an environmentalist, not a socialist.

That being said, President Bush apparently desires to be remembered for many things as he exits the oval office this January - many of which are not good. He is at it again when it comes to wolf protections.

Yes, you heard it right. This is not the same assault that was launched by the Bush administration earlier this year. Bush is again trying to strip wolves of federal protections.

Even though the prior attempts have failed, the Fish and Wildlife Service has once again presented with another murderous proposal. The most recent proposal will permit the killing of nearly 1,000 wolves in Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana.

We need to be a voice for wolves everywhere. Please let the Fish and Wildlife Service know that northern Rockies gray wolves deserve a place on the Endangered Species List.

Also please support Earthjustice and Defenders of Wildlife in their efforts to fight on behalf of the wolf. Thanks to Earthjustice's efforts, a federal judge previously ruled in favor of gray wolves. That was in July of this year. That federal judge found the proposal to be illegal and found several flaws in the Fish and Wildlife Service's proposal. We need the same results, and Earthjustice will once again come to the aid of our wolves.

We cannot allow anyone to take wolves off of the Endangered Species List. If this fight is lost, it will result in the reinstatement of wolf hunts and all out slaughter in the states of Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana.

Everyone agrees that they would like to see wolves come off of the Endangered Species List; however, they need to come off of it under the right conditions. The right conditions include their restoration to the point of being nowhere near threatened or extinct, and they need to be safe.

Presently, there is a decline in wolf population due to aerial and ground hunts, trapping, poisoning, and all other heinous means of killing that wolf haters can come up with and get away with. Ideally, 2,000-3,000 wolves minimum is required to allow for genetic exchange between Yellowstone's wolves and wolves throughout the northern Rockies. From there, the creation of laws that would keep wolves out of danger would be the best case scenario. We are not even close to these conditions at this time. However, we can reach our goal of wolf recovery if we continue in this fight to prevent mass slaughter of the wolf, as seen in the 19th century.

First, we must win the battle at hand. Secondly, if we are to prevent 19th century mass slaughter of wolves, we must educate everyone concerning the wolf and its true behavior. Education is essential to prevent 19th century mentality concerning this issue because it is 19th century mentality that makes these occurrences possible. Lastly, we must continue with public education and never let our guard down concerning this issue as modern society continues to villainize the wolf - - in our news (newspapers, news reports on television and internet, and even in Hollywood).

For the time being, it is first things first. Tell the Fish and Wildlife Service that you oppose the delisting of gray wolves and that you intend to Save the Wolves Now!

Monday, October 20, 2008

National Wolf Awareness Week

I thought I'd wrap up National Wolf Awareness Week with a tribute to a domesticated canine that I came to know so very long ago (as my true thanks would have to go to the wolf, for without the wolf, I would have never known the love of a dog). That dog is responsible for my lifelong love and concern of all canines everywhere and forever.

Being an only child, my first "true blue" childhood friend was a dog. Not just any dog, either. A stray dog who later would be known as "Brownie" by me and my family. We never knew much about Brownie, only that a brown stray dog that was running the neighborhood streets had one day wandered up into the yard where I was playing. From there, this dog befriended me. My family never took Brownie in. Regrettably, he remained a stray who visited me often. His love and devotion to me was quite apparent, and I only recently learned that Brownie was taken to a farm outside the city because he had become "over-protective" of me. I never knew that about him, and it deeply saddened me - even now, so many years later - that we were separated because of his love and devotion to me. I was afterall a toddler and an only child, and who the heck knows? Maybe I needed protection. I know that I certainly needed a friend, and Brownie was definitely that. And more. For the better part of my life, I wanted a dog (my mom was always a "cat person" so we never had a dog when I was growing up - - Brownie was my first canine experience). My wanting of a dog has never stopped, even though I've now had a few. I never realized until the day that my mom told me this story why I have been so involved with dogs nor did I ever understand why there always seemed to be some void I was trying to fill. Life is just not the same, and it is true that a house just isn't a home without a dog to share it with.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Wolf Man on 20/20

This coming Friday, October 24, 2008, 20/20 is going to feature the true story of a man who has made a pack of wolves his family. Also, we will be able to see the introduction of his girlfriend to the wolves.

See the preview here: http://abcnews.go.com/video/playerIndex?id=5969585

Shaun Ellis is the "wolf man" I mention here. He is a British wolf behavior expert. He is based at Combe Martin Wildlife Park in North Devon, England, where he manages a resident wolf pack and observes them. This is where Shaun Ellis was able to realize his lifelong dream of raising wild wolf cubs. Three wolf cubs who were abandoned at birth became his charges. Over the course of 18 months, he lived with and interacted with them. After that time, he introduced them to the resident wolf pack of Combe Martin Wildlife Park. Until the introduction, he had served as alpha male. As alpha male, he had to teach them how to be wolves, how to howl, etc. The research of the "wolf man" includes living in a trailer on the outskirts of the wolf pack's home and becoming a member of their pack. He is of the belief that living as closely as possible to wolves is the best way to understand them. While living among the wolves, he takes on all of their behavior to include growling, howling, licking and even snarling. He eats with them.

The "wolf man" has always had an interest in all wild things. Born and raised in Norfolk, England, he lived on an isolated farm enveloped by the woods. Shaun Ellis trained as a gamekeeper but then left that position once it was discovered by Ellis' supervisor that Ellis intended to release animals who had been gathered into the countryside. There would be many jobs to follow; however, Shaun Ellis never gave up his lifelong dream to study wolves and in particular, to study the Yellowstone National Park wolves. After some service in the Army, Ellis was able to save up enough money to cover the costs associated with making the trip to pursue his dream. Once there, Ellis spent the next seven years on an Idaho Indian reservation with the Nez Perce Indians. The Nez Perce Indians taught Shaun Ellis how to properly observe wolves in the wild. Each night, Shaun Ellis would record wild wolf howls coming from the woods and then study them the next day. After recording and playing back wolf howls repeatedly, Ellis began to able to distinguish individual pack members. Shaun Ellis began to understand that wolves are highly intelligent and highly instinctive animals who give trust and balance abundantly within the pack's social order. It is these characteristics that many humans fail to acknowledge, do not know, or simply misunderstand about the wolf.

Shaun Ellis filmed a series for Animal Planet that gives us a look into his world of wolf observation. The series is entitled "Living with the Wolf Man" and lets us see how he introduced and eventually integrated Helen Jeffs (girlfriend) into the pack. Together, they are promoting awareness of wolf behavior and conservation.

The National Geographic Channel has also featured a Shaun Ellis documentary entitled "A Man Among Wolves".

Given that 20/20 will be featuring this amazing couple this Friday, I am relieved to know that everyone watching will finally to get to hear something from someone who is not only pro-wolf but someone who is pro-wolf because he has studied wolves up close and personally. Shaun Ellis' firsthand, ground-breaking experience with wolves makes him a valuable source of information and much-needed advocate for our wolves. This very important work that Ellis and Jeffs are doing is so necessary - even timely - given the plight of the wolf and all of the voices of fear and hatred aimed at wolves out there. So much of the anti-wolf campaign is being driven by people who lack education, knowledge, and experience. We need more voices like Ellis and Jeffs, and I want to thank Shaun Ellis and Helen Jeffs for all that they have done and are doing to Save The Wolves Now!

Palin Family Troopergate and Parents' Living Room

Some of you have been asking about and looking for the picture of Sarah Palin's parents' living room. I have posted it above for you. From the looks of it, animal slaughter just runs in the family.

"What is Troopergate, as it relates to Sarah Palin?", some may ask. I know that I wondered. Fortunately, for this blog at this time, officials have concluded their investigation so I can give you the complete rundown on it - - from start to finish.

I have to warn you that some of this will sound like the kettle calling the pot black, but it is best described in one word: Politics which can also sometimes mean "talking out of both sides of your mouth".

Quite a while back, The Washington Post reported the following on the subject: “Republican presidential candidate John McCain's running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, is an ethics reformer under an ethics investigation that is plowing through private domestic matters. Palin is under investigation to determine whether she pressured and then fired the state police chief in July because he refused to dismiss her former brother-in-law. At the time, the governor's younger sister was involved in a bitter divorce and child custody dispute with the man, a state trooper. A bipartisan committee of the state legislature voted unanimously to hire a retired prosecutor to investigate. His report is due in October.”

This investigation also revealed something we already suspected, and that is that Sarah Palin and family members have no regard for wildlife, unless it can be used to her advantage - - namely for the purpose of her political campaigning. Apparently, Sarah Palin's sister got a hunting permit and then invited her husband, Wooten, to come along for her moose hunting trip. Molly had no interest in taking a shot at the moose when the time came; therefore, she had her husband shoot the moose even though it is illegal to shoot an animal using a borrowed permit. The hunting permit must be in the hunter's name, of course.

Sarah Palin's father butchered the moose for the Wootens. Clearly, Palin and extended family members had no objections or problems with the illegal kill of the moose. They subsequently took part in "dressing" the moose and then turning it into family dinner, who knows how many times.

Anyone who has been keeping up with Sarah Palin's wildlife kill record should not be surprised at this; however, the disgust comes with her hypocrisy in making an issue of Trooper Wooten's illegal killing of the moose.

Apparently, the only illegal killing of any wildlife that Sarah Palin takes issue with are the illegal kills made by people she does not like. Most obviously, the other thing that Palin takes issue with is when someone fails to follow her instructions, even when it is an abuse of her power. Case in point: It is believed by many involved in the investigation that Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan was fired by Palin when he refused to discharge Mike Wooten who was a state trooper under Monegan.

The 263 page report of the investigation into the goings-on that led up to the scrutinizing of Palin's actions reflects that Palin allowed the family grudge to cloud her judgment, even if it wasn't the entire reason for firing Monegan.

Back in September, Palin told Charlie Gibson of ABC News "[Wooten] is still a trooper." "Commissioner Monegan was replaced because he wasn't reaching the goals that our cabinet members were to reach, find efficiencies, put new vision, new energy into all of our departments."

Sarah Palin made the following statement to reporters from Pittsburgh Tribune-Review:
"It is important for a governor to take on the responsibility of making sure that everybody in her cabinet is in the right place at the right time to best serve the public," Palin said. "I dismissed a cabinet member because he wasn't the right person at the right time in his position -- dismissed him having nothing to do with telling him to hire or fire anybody else."

However, the report of the investigation states that Sarah Palin violated the state Ethics Act. Bottomline is Palin abused her power.

Now, if only the would investigate her illegal killing and hunting of Alaska's wildlife because clearly, the above isn't the only time that Palin abuses her power.

Keep that in mind long after the election. No doubt her wildlife slaughters are far from over.

Each and every day, we must remember that we need to Save The Wolves Now!

Friday, October 17, 2008

National Wolf Awareness Week

Dogs and Wolves - - How Different Are They From Each Other?

For fun today but also to provoke some deep thought, I wanted to post a fable here to help you to consider the relationship between the wild and wonderful wolf and our domesticated canine friend also known as "man's best friend", the dog.

The Dog and the Wolf (Aesop Fable)

A gaunt Wolf was almost dead with hunger when he happened to meet a House-dog who was passing by. "Ah, Cousin," said the Dog.
"I knew how it would be; your irregular life will soon be the ruin of you. Why do you not work steadily as I do, and get your food regularly given to you?"
"I would have no objection," said the Wolf, "if I could only get a place."

"I will easily arrange that for you," said the Dog "come with me to my master, and you shall share my work."

So the Wolf and the Dog went towards the town together. On the way there the Wolf noticed that the hair on a certain part of the Dog's neck was very much worn away, so he asked him how that had come about.

"Oh, it is nothing," said the Dog. "That is only the place where the collar is put on at night to keep me chained up; it chafes a bit, but one soon gets used to it."

"Is that all?" said the Wolf. "Then good-bye to you, Master Dog."

Better starve free than be a fat slave.

So, our wolves run free. They live free.

When you think about it, wolves are not so different from our dogs. Our dogs have evolved several generations; therefore, their behaviors have evolved. We can keep them as pets. However, how far apart is the divide between dogs and wolves?

If we keep our dogs outside and do not let them share our homes, they will roam and eventually meet up with other dogs who roam free. If we do not provide a meal to our canine companions, they will hunt for their survival. Dogs who are introduced to these conditions will begin to run free together, hunt together, and eat together. They will create a pack. They will establish hierarchy in their pack. They will begin to lose their socialization with humans and become skiddish and afraid of us. They may even attempt to bite the hand that reaches for them or charge the person who corners them.

Statistics reflect that a dog that isn't properly "socialized" (such as tied out in the yard to a tree or kept behind a fence in the backyard and ignored) is more likely to bite a human due to fear of humans.

In the dog world, we also talk about "prey instinct" or "prey drive". Some dogs are more likely to chase than others are. You know the dog that I speak of. We have all known at least one. When outside, they notice everything around them and give chase if a bird, squirrel, or even a cat is spotted. Is this a trait specific to our dog companions? Certainly not. This is their heritage as descendants of the wolf.

Unfortunately, because we expect dogs to be domesticated, we have higher expectations of them. When an ordinary dog exhibits any of its natural, innate behaviors on a full-time basis, some call them "feral", others call them "stray", and when these dogs are trapped because they are running free in packs, they then beome "shelter dogs". If their "wolf" like behaviors persist, we call them "unadoptable". If we feel sorry for them and take them into our homes and try to keep them there, they become known as "bad dog".

But the canines that we have come to accept as behaving that way and living outdoors for centuries now - but not without its problems - we call the wolf.

So, what is the difference between our dogs and wolves? Not a whole lot with the exception of we take dogs into our homes, care for them, and provide for them. We give them a place in our hearts.

So, why not the wolf? Let's give the wolf a place in our hearts so that we can Save The Wolves Now!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

National Wolf Awareness Week

Wolf Reintroduction

What exactly is it? What does it mean? Why all the controversy?

Reintroduction of wolves involves re-establishment of a population of wolves into areas where they had been previously extirpated, but this re-establishment is by artificial means. Reintroduction of wolves is only possible and can only be considered where there are large tracts of wilderness still existing. The other consideration would be this land has to have proper prey and enough of it to support the wolves in the reintroduction program.

In 1995, after many years of consideration, gray wolves were finally reintroduced to Yellowstone National Park. They were also reintroduced to Idaho. The program was a success.

This has been a hot topic. Wolf reintroduction has strong advocates on both sides of the argument. Both those who support it and those who oppose it are very passionate about it. Wolf reintroduction has been considered for other places in the United States and even in various European countries. The battle concerning reintroduction has turned urban residents against those who reside in more rural areas. Of course, the rural residents tend to oppose it due to concerns for their livestock.

The good news here is that over the past several decades,there seems to be a change of attitude toward wolf reintroduction. The bad news is that those who oppose wolf reintroduction represent the majority on the issue.

We who love wolves and support their preservation and protection need to stand up and start being heard and counted so that we can Save The Wolves Now!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

National Wolf Awareness Week

Wolf Territory / Where the Wolves Live

We cannot discuss the wolf's territory or habitat without mentioning the matter at hand: Illegal killing of wolves threatens its future, and they are quickly losing territory to humans. Human encroachment - in addition to fear and hatred - into territories where wolves live is the leading threat to wolf survival. Not only do wolves require large areas of habitat that is green and with an abundant source of food and water, they also need humans to stop hunting, trapping, and slaughtering them like they (wolves) are savage beasts (we already know that humans can - and often do - behave as savage beasts - - think aerial hunting of wolves).

Forests, deserts, plains, mountains, and even the tundra need to be welcome - and safe - places for wolves.

Another place we need to be able to see wolves thriving is in our national parks. Wolves have been found in the following national parks:

Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Katmai National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Kenai Fjords National Park, Alaska
Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Bering Land Bridge National Preserve, Alaska
Lake Clark National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Noatak National Preserve, Alaska
Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve, Alaska
Isle Royale National Park, Michigan
Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Michigan
Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota
Glacier National Park, Montana
North Cascades National Park, Washington
Grant Teton National Park, Wyoming
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Naturally, if you are an avid reader on the subject matter and controversy surrounding wolf preservation, its status when it comes to the Endangered Species Act, and its reintroduction into national parks, the above list naturally raises some concern - and with good reason.

My thoughts and concerns drift to how really safe are wolves in the national parks of Alaska, given how current Governor Palin feels about them (think $150 bounties to include severing of wolf paws/forelegs). From there, my mind wanders to the current - and past - controversy surrounding wolves in Yellowstone - - from their removal decades ago to wolf reintroduction in 1995 to the now current controversy/battle to keep them there - - and to keep them protected and on the Endangered Species List, no matter where they are.

It is up to those of us who do not condone savagery and who still believe that we must protect all wildlife to ensure that the majestic wolf remains wild, free, and safe.

Please do what you can - and even attempt some things that you think that you cannot do - to honor wolves during National Wolf Awareness Week and long after this week to Save The Wolves Now!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

National Wolf Awareness Week

Welcome to another day of National Wolf Awareness Week!

As promised, I am bringing more wolf-related facts to you today.

General Wolf Facts

Wolves are mammals (Mammals - "Any of various warm-blooded vertebrate animals of the class Mammalia, including humans, characterized by a covering of hair on the skin and, in the female, milk-producing mammary glands for nourishing the young")

Wolves are carnivores (Carnivore - "A predatory, flesh-eating animal") Sounds much worse than it is. You and I are canivores though we may choose not to eat meat. Your dog or cat is also a carnivore.

A wolf's lifespan in the wild is approximately 6 to 8 years (though that is becoming shorter due to trapping, aerial hunting, and poisoning).

Wolf measurements (for lack of a better term):
Head and body is usually 36" to 63" (3 feet to slightly over 5 feet long)

Tail is usually 13" to 20" (just over 1 foot to just under 2 feet long)

Weight is usually 40 to 175 pounds (A good number of us shared our childhood homes and now share our beds with dogs who weigh that much!)

A wolf group is known as a "pack"

Protection status: Endangered. (For now. Recently removed from the Endangered Species Act and most recently returned to the list - but for how long?)

Wolf Society, Culture, and Rules of the Pack

There are typically 6 to 10 wolves in a pack. They live, hunt, and travel - sometimes up to 12 miles in a single day - together. Wolves don't regularly "sit down" to a daily dinner or big catch; therefore, when they do eat, they do not often eat in moderation. One single wolf can consume up to 20 pounds in one sitting. Sometimes, a wolf has to opt out for a much smaller meal such as a bird, fish, lizard, snake, or even fruit.

There is a strict rule of hierarchy (chain of command) in every wolf pack. There is a dominant (alpha) male who has first rank, and his mate does not follow far behind him. This alpha pair are usually the only breeding pair in the pack.

Remember the popular phrase "It takes a village to raise a child"? Well, that concept is alive and well within the wolf pack. Each adult wolf helps take care of and rear the new wolf pups. This can range from bringing the pups food or keeping watch over them while others in the pack are away on a hunt. Just imagine how this attitude, if applied to our culture and society, could transform our lives today. Our children could play outdoors without our supervision once more. They could walk to and from school safely. There would be no more school or college massacres. There would be no more child abduction or sexual predators. The list goes on.

That is just one of the many reasons why I have always admired the wolf, its societal structure, and its adherence to civility. The more I learn about the wolf, the more that I wish that we humans would take some lessons from the wolf and its societal norms. The more that we humans are left to our own devices and fight to be free of societal "norms" and social mores, the more I can see an alarming role reversal between predatory animals and humans.

Many more of you out there share this sentiment, I know, and it is evidenced each and every time someone thinks or says "I like my dog (dogs) and trust my dog (dogs) more than I like / trust humans."

Without wolves, we would not have our trusted dog friends, and if our dogs could weigh in on the issue of wolf protection and conservation, they would tell us to Save The Wolves Now!

Monday, October 13, 2008

National Wolf Awareness Week

" . . . From this hour onward, I would go open-minded into the lupine world and learn to see and know the wolves, not for what they were supposed to be but for what they actually were." - from Farley Mowat's "Never Cry Wolf"

Since it is National Wolf Awareness Week, I thought we could dedicate each day to learning more about the wolf. This, I feel, is a good way to honor them.

What do most people know about the wolf? Fact or fiction? This much is true: Most who love the wolf know its true nature and have a deep respect and awe for this sometimes mystical creature. Those who hate the wolf generally use the hate as an outlet for fear - of the unknown, as I have not encountered many wolf haters who actually know much about the true character of the wolf. Many of the misconceptions and misunderstandings then translate into obstacles in the survival and recovery of this maligned species.

So, who or what is the wolf? The wolf is an ancestor of our domestic canine friends. Wolves were the first dog, so to speak. Without wolves, we would not have "man's best friend". Dogs are direct descendants of the wolf. This is not myth.

Never in the history of the wolf has there ever been an attack on a human. This fact dates back to the 1800s when records started being kept. Healthy, wild wolves do not prey on humans nor do they harm or kill humans. In fact, they fear humans. And with good reason. There have been behavioral issues in wolf hybrids (dogs bred with wolves) due to genetic behavioral issues, but that is to be expected as this is not a recommended practice. So, no wolf attacks, hunting, or killing of humans. Unfortunately, we cannot say the same of our domesticated canine friends. In fact, millions of humans are attacked by so-called domesticated canines (dogs). This is fact.

"But they do hunt livestock and destroy the bottomline for farmers and cattle ranchers", you may say. Well, the last report that I can find with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service with regard to the Northern Rockies is that wolves were responsible for only a mere 1.3% of sheep deaths and .03% of cattle from all causes, and .4% of sheep and 1% of cattle deaths due to predators. I don't know about you, but I happen to think these numbers are very small. So, what warrants the call for wolf slaughter to the point of extinction - - in the past or hopes of such a thing for the present? This brings me back to the idea that it is fear and misunderstanding.

To make matters worse - on the topic of wolves as predators and misgivings of farmers and cattle ranchers - is the fact that there are many precautions that can be taken to ensure the
safety and longevity of cattle/livestock. The list of methods is long, but it includes: rotating and guarding herds, keeping livestock away from wolf denning and meeting sites, staying vigilant concerning the removal of dead livestock from fields so that wolves don't feel invited to the area for dinner, and the use of fladry. (Fladry - A string of flags used to contain or exclude wild animals. Also attributively: fladry line, fladry barrier. ) Incidentally, it has been reported that wolves would rather attempt to run with the helicopters rather than cross the line of fladry. In my quest to provide you with some facts concerning our wolf friends, I also came across something known as the Wolf Guardian Program. This program pays people to camp in wolf country to "keep watch" over livestock. For the wolf enthusiast and avid photographer, this sounds like a great job!

Another often not mentioned fact is that farmers and cattle ranchers are compensated for their losses. In fact, Defenders of Wildlife has spent in excess of $280,000.00 since the late '80s to compensate ranchers for confirmed wolf-related losses of livestock.

While we are on the subject of dinner bells being rung, this is a good place to offer another fact concerning wolves. They often seek out and eat dead carcasses. Even though the wolf is strong and powerful, it is difficult for them to eat anything that is not weak (near death and dying already) or simply dead. So, do wolves reduce populations of animals for humans to hunt? Not likely. In fact, Minnesota had its highest record deer harvests while supporting about 200o wolves. If "big game" numbers are truly on the decline, there are numerous factors and conditions to consider. Factors contributing to the decline of "big game" include parasite outbreaks and disease, harsh winter weather, and traffic, just to name a few. Wolves are actually responsible for very few deaths. Where there are larger populations of wolves, wildlife have had to become more proactive and vigilant in their survival (they move around often and do not stay in the same place for long), and this survival behavior may have caused hunters to ascertain that since there are more wolves, that must be the reason they are not seeing "big game" where they used to, are seeing fewer of the animals they enjoy hunting, or are not seeing them at all, as they once did. This can indeed make hunting more challenging, but the animals being hunted are still there. Hunters just need to look harder.

That concludes today's wolf facts. Until next time, don't forget that we need to Save The Wolves Now!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Palin Wolf and Pups Video - Illegal Kill

Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin's Illegal Hunting and Killing of Adult Wolves and Denning of Pups (See video posted below, and please be sure to forward to everyone you know)

Defenders of Wildlife has exposed more of Palin's wolf-killing record. This time, the details are far more disturbing than anything up to now. Most likely, that is because this is a story that has been conveniently buried from the public. Read on, and you will see why:

Just this past June (2008), 14 adult wolves were chased and gunned down through the means of aerial hunting by Governor Palin’s Department of Fish and Game. Not only did this helicopter slaughter exhaust and kill adult wolves, but this kill resulted in the execution style kill of 14 orphaned wolf pups. They brutally shot each one in the head. This practice was in clear violation of state law. State law prohibits "denning" which is the practice of targeting wolf pups.

This bit of trivia has somehow escaped public attention. Understandable, given the nature and brutality of what happened. Clearly, Palin’s officials wouldn't release such goings-on to the public. Though there was a press release on June 30, 2008, made by the state of Alaska to the local press. Of course, no mention of the brutal pup executions was made. In fact, and worse yet, as of the time of writing this, none of the officials involved in the incident have been held accountable. Does Governor Palin promote the corrupt idea that those in government positions and those who make the laws can also break those laws?

I don't understand it. Governor Palin's roles as wife, mother, daughter and her accomplishments as a woman should make most women proud and be an example . . . and yet, there is this savagery playing out behind the scenes of your everyday "soccer mom" persona.

The election is upon us, but don't let the outcome of this election cause you to forget Governor Palin's wolf-killing (and wolf pup-killing) record. Yes, she could be just months away from the White House and even from the presidency, should dire circumstances take place in the future. However, regardless of the outcome of this election, Governor Palin needs to remain at the forefront of our minds as a serious threat to our wolves and wildlife overall.

Please support Defenders of Wildlife in their mission to spread the truth concerning Sarah Palin’s disgraceful record on aerial killing. Also, please be sure to take a look at their latest information TV ad / commercial concerning her heavily promoted and encouraged slaughter of wolves and their pups. I don't know about you, but I'd like to see aerial gunning done away with permanently, and I certainly want to see our wolves - and their pups - protected. At this link, there is a form available to assist you in forwarding the video to everyone you know.


In the final weeks of this very close election campaign, please remember that you can make a lasting impression and a powerful difference. And after the campaign, please don't forget that we need to Save the Wolves Now!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

National Wolf Awareness Week

"If you have men who will exclude any of God's creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity, you will have men who deal likewise with their fellow men." - Saint Francis of Assisi

Hello Fellow Wolf Lovers! I have a special announcement.

National Wolf Awareness Week is upon us. Wolf Awareness Week begins on October 12 and runs through October 18, 2008. National Wolf Awareness Week is a week of events dedicated to dispelling misconceptions and teaching about the role predators play in maintaining biological diversity. Defenders of Wildlife will be sponsoring events nationwide to celebrate wolves. Be sure to check their website for more information. Hopefully, there is an event near you. Or how about organizing an event for yourself in an effort to raise awareness on the true nature and importance of the wolf?

Defenders of Wildlife encourages you to plan educational activities in your area. If you do, you can contact Nilanga Jayasinghe at Defenders, and they will post your event on their website.

This blog will feature daily facts concerning wolves in an effort to eliminate ideas and long-held beliefs that have caused people to villainize this beautiful and mystical creature. Please get involved. This is your chance to Save the Wolves Now!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin Update

(Jim Dutcher's hand to wolf paw photograph)

A "wolf paw high five" and a big "WAY TO GO!" to U.S. District Judge Paul Friedman in Washington for the following:

For overturning the Bush administration's decision to remove gray wolves in the Western Great Lakes region from the Endangered Species List!

On September 23, 2008, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service asked a judge in Montana to return gray wolves in the Northern Rockies to the Endangered Species List, reversing a proposal to drop them earlier this year. That followed the judge's order in July barring plans for public wolf hunts in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming.

The biggest practical effect of Friedman's ruling is to rid the states of new policies permitting those in the Great Lakes area to kill wolves that are perceived to be attacking livestock or pets. It also halts the issuance of permits for the purposes of hunting or trapping of wolves. Thankfully, those "remedies" had not yet been implemented.

After being pushed to the brink of near extinction, the wolf occupies only about 5% of its historical range, which once took in most of the continental United States.

Thankfully - and no thanks to wolf haters - the wolf has recovered steadily in the Western Great Lakes Region since the late 1970s, having migrated from Minnesota into Wisconsin and Michigan's Upper Peninsula. Approximate wolf numbers are as follows:
2,921 in Minnesota, 537 in Wisconsin, and 520 in Michigan.

The State of Wisconsin will now have to revoke permits that were previously issued to seven farmers. Those permits allowed for the shooting of wolves attacking livestock and natural resources. Of course, I feel the need to say here that the circumstances would be strictly subjective. What was to stop a permit holder from just killing a wolf that was in plain sight, just passing by, and not attacking livestock or "natural resources"?

While the issue remains unresolved on a permanent basis, state officials have reported that they will most likely seek federal permits that will allow for non-lethal methods to deal with wolves that continually harass livestock. Good idea, and why can't this be a permanent solution?

Of course, the above is all about legalities. We who care about the future of our wolf populations can only hope that everyone will, in fact, abide by the law. Those who are against wolves and fear and misunderstand the wolf and its significance remain fighting to strip the wolf of its protections, and those individuals and organizations are greatly numbered and have financial backings. We who are "pro wolf" need to be counted as well and also need to be doing all that we can to ensure that the wolf remains protected and even respected.

As the Vice-Presidential Candidate Debate is upon us, and Palin is still traveling around the country trying to gain supporters, my question to myself and those who are reading these posts is this:

What can I do to show my support of the wolf and to educate others on this very important issue?

What am I willing to do?

If I lack the finances to donate to this very worthy cause, am I willing to stay current when it comes to the upcoming debates and to make sure that I do not miss an opportunity to be heard in my own community concerning Palin's stance on wolves?

Am I willing to make a sign or signs for others who share my views to take to these rallies - and even the debate - that will bring to the attention of those in attendance Sarah Palin's wolf (and even bear) slaughtering ways?

What about a simple bumper sticker or window sign for my car?

What can I do to Save The Wolves Now?

These are the tough questions that we all need to be asking ourselves, folks, because the wolf haters are strong in number. How did they become so strongly numbered? One wolf hater at a time. We can do the same. We must increase our numbers one at a time, too.

Tell me what you are willing to do, plan to do, wish to do, or are going to do. We all need to have a plan and to stick with it because long after the election, the wolves will remain a target. The fight is far from over, and we have to take action and stay involved.

Wolf lovers unite to Save The Wolves Now!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Earthjustice and Defenders of Wildlife Announce Victory

Wolves Safe in Greater Yellowstone and Northern Rockies - For Now

Earthjustice and Defenders of Wildlife have experienced a major victory in their legal fight to save the gray wolves of the Northern Rockies!

The Bush administration advised that it will vacate its legal defense of a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service rule declaring that gray wolves in the Northern Rockies have fully recovered. That decision resulted in the removal of the gray wolf from the endangered species list. Finally, the Fish and Wildlife Service has come to terms with the fact that there are significant scientific and legal problems with that plan. The delisting of wolves in Greater Yellowstone and the Northern Rockies just doesn't make sense.

Thank you to Earthjustice and Defenders of Wildlife and to everyone who loves the wolves and is willing to donate money and time to restore and maintain their protections.

Please know that the battle is not over. The Fish and Wildlife Service are going to review the rule and could re-issue it. The Fish and Wildlife Service together with Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana must now negotiate a more sensible and responsible plan to ensure that wolves are fully recovered with healthy, sustainable, and diverse population levels before they are removed from the list of federally protected species. Even then, we will need to keep a close watch because there has always been and will always be people who misunderstand and fear the wolf. That in turns caused the villainization and hatred of our wolf friends.

We all want wolves to recover so that there is no longer a need to have them on the endangered species list; however, as long as there are those individuals that see the wolf as a villain and a dangerous predator, they need to remain on the endangered species list . . . because people threaten them. They need to be de-listed under humane conditions, with all proper protections and rights that they deserve. We don't want them hunted, trapped, poisoned, or gunned down from planes.

Thank you to all who care about wolves and keeping them wild, free, and protected.

This is far from over, and we must remain vigilant. The fight to ensure that wolves are protected is not a recent battle nor is it a battle that will end after the upcoming elections.

All eyes must remain on these areas including Alaska and the Southwest! Please go to Defenders of Wildlife and take the time to sign all of the petitions available to let government know how you feel about wolves so that we can Save The Wolves Now!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Sarah Palin - Wolf Expert?

Is Sarah Palin a wolf or wildlife management expert? I think not. Hunter? Yes.

First - a bit of history:

Alaska 1920s - 1930s

Alaska's history of attempting predator control dates back to somewhere in the 1920s and 1930s. At that time, wildlife biologists were insisting that wolves were important to the area's natural ecology. Furthermore, the wildlife biologists insisted that wolves were not responsible for a significant number of deaths of moose, caribou, or sheep. Thanks to misgivings of the general public and the long history of folklore concerning the wolf and society's need to villainize or place blame upon an entity for circumstances that are beyond its control, the educated and well-intentioned scientists lost their fight to educate the public and protect wildlife populations. This is largely due in part to ranchers, hunters and government officials, who, of course, supported the inevitable extermination of tens of thousands of wolves. Aerial hunting dates clear back to the 1940s. From that point on, aerial hunting went through to the 1960s after Alaska had earned statehood.

Alaska in 2003

In 2003, former Alaskan Governor Frank Murkowski reopened the aerial hunting program. He made it available to citizens with special permits. Murkowski also expanded predator-control programs to cover 60,000 square miles of state and federal land. This is the largest known wolf slaughtering plan to be instituted ever since Alaska first became a state. It was Frank Murkowski's intention to reduce wolf populations in some areas by at least 60 to 80 percent. Since reinstituting the aerial hunting program and providing citizens with special permits to do so, gunners have killed at least 795 wolves. That is a sugar-coated number. Conservationists state that the true number of wolves who have lost their lives to trapping, aerial hunting, and being chased down by gunners on snow machines is more along the lines of 2,000. Each and every year! That includes those who were killed by "legal" means and illegal means.

The Experts Speak

In 2007, 172 scientists signed a letter directed to Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin. That letter expressed concern over Palin's lack of scientific knowledge behind Alaska's wolf-killing operation. According to the scientists, state officials set population objectives for moose and caribou based on "unattainable, unsustainable historically high populations." As a result, the "inadequately designed predator control programs" threatened the long-term health of both the ungulate and wolf populations. The letter from the scientists begged Sarah Palin to reconsider her stance on the conservation of wolves and bears "on an equal basis with the goal of producing more ungulates for hunters." (Definition of ungulate: Having hooves. Resembling hooves; hooflike.")

Hunter Sarah Palin did not care. She introduced state legislation in early 2008 that would divide the predator-control program from science. Sarah Palin's legislation transfers authority of the predator-control program from the state Department of Fish and Game to Alaska's Board of Game. Funny thing: The members who make up the Alaska's Board of Game are those individuals who are appointed by yes, you guessed it: Sarah Palin. This action was so bold that it has caused some hunters to react.

Sarah Palin's Alaska Board of Game will have "more leeway without any scientific input to do whatever the hell they basically wanted," Mark Richards, co-chair of Alaska Backcountry Hunters and Anglers. Thankfully, the legislation is currently stalled.

"Across the board, Sarah Palin puts on a masquerade, claiming she is using sound management and science," says Nick Jans, an Alaskan writer. "In reality she uses ideology and ignores science when it is in her way."

From Gordon Haber, a wildlife scientist: "On wildlife-related issues, whether it is polar bears or predator controls, she has shown no inclination to be objective," he says of Palin. "I cannot find credible scientific data to support their arguments," he adds about the state's rationale for gunning down wolves. "In most cases, there is evidence to the contrary." What does Gordon Haber know? Well, he has studied wolves in Alaska for 43 years. Haber further advises that Alaska's reported numbers are wildly inflated. Four decades of wolf research conducted by Gordon Haber have revealed to him that wolves are mostly scavengers. "Sixty to 70 percent of the moose they eat are scavenged, not killed," Haber says. Haber additionally states that the wolf population estimates released by Alaska are based on secondhand observations and extrapolations - - which are also high.

In summary: Wolves are responsible for less "kills" of caribou and moose in Alaska, and the wolf population in Alaska - as reported by Alaska - is exaggerated. While we are here, I also want to suggest to some of our wolf-hater visitors that after 4+ decades of wolf research, Haber would certainly know the true character and habits of wolves and in particular, those in Alaska. (That is not to suggest that wolves living elsewhere have different behaviors.) How could Haber have become an advocate of wolves if their behavior and habits were so heinous? No way would he be. Not to mention that he is afterall a wildlife scientist.

Alaska's Stance on "Predators"

Alaska maintains that predators kill over 80 percent of the moose and caribou that die each year. Alaska also maintains that hunters and trappers kill less than 10 percent of all moose and caribou.

The true experts of wildlife science and biology maintain that Sarah Palin does not base any of her actions concerning predator control on real knowledge or science. The Palin administration is systematically killing wolves without a true knowledge or understanding of the relationship between the carnivore and hoofed animals.

Governor Palin, disappointed with the efforts of aerial hunting in 2007, offered the $150 bounty for wolf paws. State officials' aspired to the killing of 382 to 664 wolves during the 2007 predator-control season. However, 115 wolves were killed, and Sarah Palin felt that the gunners had come up short.

It was Sarah Palin's hope that the $150.00 cash bounties on wolf paws would make the predator-control season more successful, if you will. However, Gordon Haber (the wildlife scientist and observer of wolves for 43 years) had this to offer: "I can tell you from my own research that the reason they didn't get many wolves in certain years, particularly last winter, is because they have scraped those areas clean." Certainly, if anyone would know, he would.

Thankfully, in 2007, Democratic Representative, George Miller of California, introduced some logic into the mix. Rep. George Miller introduced legislation designed to curtail predator-control programs. It was to be used only as a last resort. "It's time to ground Alaska's illegal and inhumane air assault on wolves," Miller said. To that, Sarah Palin wrote a letter in response. She defended Alaska's program by stating that Alaska has "managed its wildlife so that we still maintain abundant populations of all of our indigenous predators almost fifty years after statehood."

"This is a reflection of somebody who doesn't have any use for science." Says Nick Jans, co-sponsor of the losing initiative to outlaw aerial wolf hunting, and Alaskan writer.

What can we gather from all of this? That there is some hard evidence on the table to suggest that wolves are not to blame for diminishing wildlife, if any. I myself have observed wolf hunt demonstrations and very quickly learned that no wolf, not even an entire wolf pack can effectively take down any healthy large animal and definitely not entire herds or populations of "big game", as the hunters like to call them. In fact, no wolf or wolf pack can even come close to any of the herd's young. I have witnessed this myself on numerous occasions. Though wolves are tireless - unless they are being chased on snowmobiles or helicopters - I have never seen any "big game" or young taken down in the demonstrations that I've witnessed.

What else can we gather from this small bit of Alaska's history and actual experts who have reported in on the subject? That there is much to do in this battle to protect, preserve, and Save The Wolves Now!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Sarah Palin Pro-Life and Hunter ?

Our dear wolves need to remain on the run when it comes to Governor Sarah Palin's stance on wolf hunting and the overall futures of wildlife, not just in Alaska but possibly the rest of the country if Palin makes her way to the White House.

How can one be pro-life but then hunt wildlife for sport? Many hunters and outdoorsmen argue that they are eating what they kill, and Sarah Palin claims to have hunted and eaten some of her "catch", but does she eat bear and wolf, too? We know that she kills them and promotes the aerial hunting of them. We know that she has proposed a bounty on the left forelegs of wolves. Isn't there more going on here than mere hunting? Sounds more like slaughter and savage murder to me. If it were a human doing this to another human, everyone would agree that we were dealing with a serial killer. Afterall, isn't it the serial killer who typically keeps "trophies" from its victim?

What goes through the mind of a hunter, anyways? How callous can anyone be the one to pull the trigger that will stop the beating heart of a beautiful animal, that will cease the steps of an animal and keep it from making more footprints in the snow? How can anyone be behind legislation that will silence the calls of the wolf? How can pro-life Palin promote aerial hunting and slaughter of any animal and especially that of an animal who is such a close relative to man's bestfriend? Did God not create the animals? It reminds me of an old hymn. I have posted just a few lines from it here:

"All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful:
The Lord God made them all.

He gave us eyes to see them,
And lips that we might tell
How great is God Almighty,
Who has made all things well.

All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful:
The Lord God made them all."

(From Hymns for Little Children by (Mrs) Cecil Frances Humphreys Alexander (1848)Music: Royal Oak, arranged by Martin F. Shaw (1915)

Sarah Palin is an avid hunter. Likely, she learned her disrespect for wildlife from her dad, Chuck Heath, a retired schoolteacher. He used to take his children ice-camping when they were young. According to Sarah Palin, her dad now goes around to Alaska schools teaching "Alaskana" — as termed by Palin. She advised Newsweek in August 2007 that "Alaskana" encompasses the following activities: "hunting, fishing, avalanche survival, fending off bear attacks and taxidermy." Apparently, some of that fending off would involve premeditated murder - - preferably aerial hunting. While I am certain that aerial hunting is not covered under "Alaskana" when Palin's father is teaching school-aged children, it is easy to understand where Sarah Palin gets her stance on wildlife. Chuck Heath, Sarah Palin's dad, expected all four of his children to be expert shots and expert fishermen.

Sarah Palin's mom, Sally Heath, was also a school secretary. The front yard of Sarah Palin's parents' home in Alaska would most certainly reflect "Alaskana" values - - piled high with racks and pelts of formerly wild, free, and alive animals. The walls of Sarah Palin's childhood home are adorned with stuffed moose, antelope and bear heads. Sarah Palin's parents live amongst hundreds of sets of trophy antlers and a taxidermy collection that includes a giant moose head and a full-grown mountain lion. I wonder how many of that collection were contributed by Sarah Palin.

From elk hunting to aerial hunting of wolves, bears, and other wildlife, Sarah Palin is your average all-around outdoorsman/woman as the case may be.

And did Sarah Palin really need that bear rug? Was that a necessity for her to keep herself warm? I think not. It is just another "trophy". Do you think she'll take her bear rug with her when she gets to the White House?

Please do whatever you can to stop the needless kill of so many cherished animals everywhere. A mass slaughter is in progress. The futures of so many animal species are at stake. We need to save them. Let's start with the wolf.

Save The Wolves Now!

Sarah Palin TV Ad - Wolf Killing Record

It appears that everyone is coming together to support the wolves.

There has been an overwhelming response to the Defenders of Wildlife powerful TV ad highlighting Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin's brutal record on aerial hunting of wolves. I want to join Defenders of Wildlife in thanking contributors (more than 4,500 caring wildlife supporters) for their support. As a result, the powerful Sarah Palin commercial has already been on the air in Ohio.

But we must not become lax or slow down. As you know, the wolf haters and those in support of their slaughter are many; therefore, we must continue to get the word out in an effort to grow the number of supporters in favor of keeping the wolves just the way they deserve to be: Beautiful and wild.

With additional help, Defenders of Wildlife can air the Palin commercial in Florida which is another important swing state. Can you contribute $40.00 or another amount to help run the Palin ad in Florida? As it is right now, Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin could be just steps away from the White House.

Please help Defenders of Wildlife be a strong voice for our wildlife. We owe it to the animals to get the word out on Sarah Palin's killing record and especially her stance on aerial hunting before it's too late.

Yesterday, the Defenders of Wildlife received calls from ABC, NBC, CNN, the Wall Street Journal and several Ohio newspapers -- all interested in the Sarah Palin TV ad that you're helping to run. Please donate today to help ensure that even more people know the truth about Sarah Palin!

Put Palin’s wolf-killing record on TV. I know that these are tough economic times for everyone, and you may think that you cannot make a difference with what you can comfortably give, but let me just show you what a huge difference a small amount can make:

$20: Part of one 60-second TV ad
$40: Two parts of a 60-second TV ad
$200: A full 60-second TV ad

We can all do something. Send out mass emails on behalf of the wolf. Put a signature line in all of your emails with links to support our wolf friends. Or give even just $5.00 today to the
Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund.

Together - you and I - we can Save the Wolves Now!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Sarah Palin's Wolf-Killing Record

We need to get the word out on Sarah Palin's wolf-killing record.

We are at war. Yes, we have military at war overseas; however, we are battling in America as well. Not just for our rights but for the rights of those who have no voice.

Sarah Palin has a brutal record of slaughtering wildlife, and she hopes to continue in her killing ways - - in particular, her very active and extensive promotion of aerial hunting of not just wolves, but bears also.

Unfortunately, it costs money to battle those who wish to do our wildlife harm. Not only does it cost Earthjustice attorneys to defend wolves in court, but it also costs wildlife organizations money to educate the public concerning this fight and the facts surrounding it.

Last week, Defenders of Wildlife released an informational video concerning Sarah Palin's record and stance on wildlife, wolves in particular. I created a link for it in last week's post, and it is available here for you to view. More than 68,000 people viewed the Defenders of Wildlife video which was posted at YouTube.

Defenders of Wildlife has now created a powerful television piece that will educate everyone concerning Governor Palin’s efforts to kill wolves and bears. But guess what? It will cost money to do so. Please, please, please help Defenders of Wildlife do what they do best: Defend wildlife! Don't forget that this is our wildlife, our country, and our world. We live here, and all forms of life deserve the right occupy this place with us. Moreover, we have a responsibility to care for and protect them.

As you may already know, running a television ad is not cheap. Defenders of Wildlife needs to raise $100,000 by September 17, 2008, to run their ad and support the work to provide a voice for all endangered wildlife. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n5JZgtYy6oA

Please help get the truth out. It is the only way to educate people on issues that they may know nothing about. More importantly, it is our only hope to possibly change the hearts of those who think they know what is going on, and therefore, they are just fine with aerial hunting of these beautiful creatures. Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin has proposed payment of a $150 bounty for the foreleg of each dead wolf. The aerial hunting program she vigorously promotes has already killed nearly 800 wolves. Sarah Palin has opposed efforts to save America’s polar bears from extinction, and she has fought against efforts to save some of the world’s most endangered beluga whales.

Governor Palin has sided with Big Oil, mining companies, wealthy trophy hunters, and other entrenched special interests in support of policies that would greatly harm and potentially cause extinction of the wild animals that we so treasure.

Sarah Palin affirms that she is pro-life and that it is a Godly position. Did God not create the animals? Are they not His creatures?

This is not an Anti-Palin Campaign. I am not an Obama supporter. The intention of this site is that of a Pro-Wolf and Pro-Wildlife Campaign. I am a supporter of so-called "lesser" life forms.

Join the fight for the wolves and all wildlife. They're not just my wolves and my wildlife. They are yours, too.

Support Defenders of Wildlife in their mission to save wildlife. Save the Wolves Now!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Sarah Palin Eyeglasses Need Adjusting

Sarah Palin Eyeglasses Need Adjusting

It would seem that everyone now wants to wear the same glasses as Sarah Palin. Well, let's hope that everyone's vision will not be adusted to reflect the vision of Alaskan Governor Palin. Given the fact that she sees things as she does, I would have to say that her eyeglasses are in need of an adjustment.

In a news article from the St. Petersburg Times, we learn more about who John McCain has placed on his ticket as his running mate:

Hardly An Earth Mother (written by Former Times reporter Julie Hauserman is a writer and environmental activist in Tallahassee)

"Everybody wants to debate Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin's motherhood skills because she has an unmarried, pregnant teen daughter.

Enough already. If you've got kids, you know that before you throw stones at another parent because their child is clueless, you better knock on wood at your own house first.

The key question that mothers should ask is this: What sort of world does Palin intend to leave for her new granddaughter? Or to yours?

Palin's public environmental policies offer plenty of clues: It'll be a wounded, polluted planet with a fresh round of extinct animals.

She's photographed in the latest Newsweek sitting on her office couch, which has a dead bear draped over it, complete with its sad, shaggy head. George Bush and Dick Cheney's polluter-friendly environmental policies have been cynical and devastating, and Palin is even worse.
Where to begin? Let's start with greedy, reckless thrill killing. Palin supports a disgusting and unfair blood "sport" where hunters in low-flying airplanes chase Alaska's magnificent wolves and bears through the snow until the animals are exhausted, and then they shoot them. Sometimes the animals don't die right away; it is hard to make a clean kill when you're shooting from a moving airplane.

Her bubble-headed logic is that if hunters kill off more wolves efficiently from airplanes, then fewer wolves will kill moose and caribou, and then people will have more moose and caribou to kill. What wonderful values to model for our children!

Palin wants fewer protections for rare creatures than even the anti-environment Bush administration does, and that's saying something. In a rare moment of compassion, Bush's U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposed to list the polar bear as "threatened" on the endangered species list because Alaska's arctic sea ice shrank to record lows last summer. The polar bears' summer home is melting away under their fat white paws.

Instead of recognizing the high stakes at hand, Palin filed a ridiculous taxpayer-funded lawsuit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to block responsible protection for the only polar bears in America.

And the Anchorage Daily News caught Palin making up a bogus excuse to bolster her case. Palin told federal officials that her state scientists did a "comprehensive review" that found no reason to support a threatened species listing. The Anchorage Daily News got hold of e-mails that contradicted the governor completely. The e-mails showed that Alaskan state scientists — including the head of the Department of Fish and Games' Marine Mammals Program — agreed with federal researchers' conclusion that polar bears are threatened by shrinking ice. Whoops.
"The governor's decision was clearly based on politics, not on science, and was primarily designed to protect the oil and gas industry's stampede into the Arctic Ocean," University of Alaska marine biologist Rick Steiner told the Los Angeles Times.

Sounds like Palin will fit into Bush and Cheney's cozy Washington special-interest boots just fine. We'll be the ones on the outside, wishing someone would responsibly step up to preserve some clean air and water for our kids.

I used to sing my daughter a song called Baby Beluga, about beluga whales. She loved those mysterious, pudgy white creatures in the picture book. Palin apparently doesn't. She fought against protecting a rare population of genetically distinct belugas located only one place on Earth: Alaska's Cook Inlet. Scientists say the whales are one of the most endangered mammals in America. They numbered 1,300 in the 1980s. Sadly, there are about 375 now.
Still, Palin told federal regulators that putting the 375 remaining whales on the endangered species list would be "unwarranted." Why would Palin sell out Baby Beluga? Money. An endangered species listing, she wrote, "would do serious long-term damage to the vibrant economy of the Cook Inlet area."

Like Bush and Cheney, Palin favors drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The GOP's top dog, John McCain, does not.

"When America set aside the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, we called it a 'refuge' for a reason," McCain said sensibly.

Does anyone really believe that if we throw out protections for wild things that the world will be better off and we'll all be richer? That our grandchildren will thank us later because we killed off species, made corporations fatter, and extracted every morsel of oil and mineral out of the planet, then used it recklessly until it ran out?

I would like my daughter, and her children, to one day see the Beaufort Sea, off the coast of the arctic refuge. I'd like her to see the endangered bowhead whale, the beluga whales, the bearded, ringed, and spotted seals. I'd like her to see polar bears. I'd like these animals to live without the threat of getting slimed by a giant oil spill.

Palin has only been Alaska's governor for two years, and she's already laid an impressive path of environmental destruction. I don't get it. A true conservative would want to, um, conserve Alaska's famous wilderness treasures. If Palin is so quick to sell off Alaska's prodigious bounty, what will she do when she gets her hands on the rest of America's natural legacy?

Bush, Cheney, Palin and their Big Oil friends are out of step. Their greedy natural resource policies constitute shameless theft — from their grandchildren, and from ours."

Ahhh . . . the joys of a democracy. Where do We The People go when there are no good choices left in an election? Now, there isn't even a lesser evil to turn to.

We have to save ourselves so that we can Save The Wolves Now!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Video - Sarah Palin's Stance on Aerial Hunting of Wolves

WARNING! Graphic and disturbing images of wolves being hunted by air.

Here is the link to the video which is coutesy of Defenders of Wildlife:


Should you choose not to follow the above link to view the video of Sarah Palin's stance on wolf hunting, I urge you to share the video with your friends, family, and anyone else who cares about the future of wolves everywhere.

While we are on the subject, may I suggest to you and anyone else out there - wolf hater or wolf lover - that this is not hunting? Where is the sport in it? Where is the respect? It is out and out murder, a slaughter, and nothing but a mere show of man's dominance and arrogance. It is also a clear demonstration of what happens when respect for other life on this planet is lost and given license.

As I suggested in a more recent post, there is much more at stake here than wolves, and while it may be too late to save the human race from becoming more sub-human, it is my greatest hope that it is not too late for wolves and wildlife everywhere.

So, please do what you can to Save the Wolves Now!

Alaska Governor Palin's Stance On Wolves

Have you been wondering what Sarah Palin's exact stance is on wolves? I know I have been wondering.

Well, on the eve of her acceptance of the nomination to run as Vice President hopeful on the McCain ticket, I have that information for you.

Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin is guilty of the following:

Proposing a bounty of $150.00 for each left foreleg of every dead wolf.

Approving a $400,000.00 propaganda campaign - funded by the State of Alaska - to promote aerial hunting.

Introducing legislation to make it more permissible to use aircraft to hunt wolves and bears.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Sarah Palin of Alaska Chosen as Running Mate

More Bad News from Alaska.

Senator John McCain announced that Governor Sarah Palin of Alaska is his choice for running mate.

Rodger Schlickeisen, the president of Defenders of Wildlife Action Fund released the following statement:

“Senator McCain’s choice for a running mate is beyond belief. By choosing Sarah Palin, McCain has clearly made a decision to continue the Bush legacy of destructive environmental policies.“Sarah Palin, whose husband works for BP (formerly British Petroleum), has repeatedly put special interests first when it comes to the environment. In her scant two years as governor, she has lobbied aggressively to open up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling, pushed for more drilling off of Alaska’s coasts, and put special interests above science. Ms. Palin has made it clear through her actions that she is unwilling to do even as much as the Bush administration to address the impacts of global warming. Her most recent effort has been to sue the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove the polar bear from the endangered species list, putting Big Oil before sound science. As unbelievable as this may sound, this actually puts her to the right of the Bush administration. “This is Senator McCain’s first significant choice in building his executive team and it’s a bad one. It has to raise serious doubts in the minds of voters about John McCain’s commitment to conservation, to addressing the impacts of global warming and to ensuring our country ends its dependency on oil.”

Perhaps it is true what everyone has been saying - that McCain will mean "more of the same", at least where our environment and wildlife is concerned.

Whatever happens, we must not give up. We must continue our fight to

Save the Wolves Now!

Sad News for Wolves In Alaska

Wolf activists and more importantly wolves of Alaska lost the vote to the more financially powerful. Aerial hunting will be permitted and continue.

We must not give up. We must not be discouraged. We must not stop being the voices of those who cannot fight this fight. Let's all remain focused and

Save the Wolves Now!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Alaska Voting in 4 Days

We need to stop the aerial hunting of Alaska's wolves and wildlife!
Four more days before the voting will take place. Tuesday, August 26, 2008, is the day!

I've been giving much thought to why such a large divide between wolf lovers and wolf haters. What is behind it all?! Especially the haters. The advocates of wolf slaughter. How can we as humans and part of the human race advocate such violent slaughter of any living thing and such close relatives to the canine companions that so many of us share our homes - and our hearts - with?

Is it the human's need for domination over all living things? Is it a human's need and desire to be at the top of the food chain? What is it? Is it that even among us humans, there are predators and prey? The human and the humane? What I am realizing that every person is a human, but not all are humane. Being a human is by birth; however, being part of humanity - a humane culture and society - is not a birthright. Note the picture above. This is what we are up against.

We who love and advocate for the survival, preservation, and protection of our wolf friends are lovers of all life everywhere. We are respecters of every living thing. We are not haters, hunters, or lovers of division, slaughter, and death.

The truth of the matter concerning the future of wolves and all other life forms is this: That if an aerial hunting, poisoning, or out and out slaughter of a human that was a relative, friend, or neighbor or even one of our pets was being committed or being voted on, even the wolf haters would take a stand - - they would say that is not humane and that it should be illegal. If a group of so-called humans gathered and began taking out entire human families, everyone would be outraged, and there would be no disagreement. Wolf lovers and wolf haters can all agree on that point.

However, what we cannot agree on is the value of the life of a wolf or any other living thing, apparently. Why is that? Who is behind the guns or poisons in this war against the wolf? Someone who likes to disguise his sociopathic behavior by calling himself a "hunter" or "sportsman"? Don't most research psychologists indicate that animal abuse, torture, slaughter, or killing should be viewed as behavioral warning signs and that it can be a predictor of future violence against humans?

So, that being said, aren't these hunters and sportsman really waging war on the human race? Isn't this our societal problem rather than that of the wolf's problem?

Wolves do nothing to humans. They are predators and definitely at the top of the food chain in the wildlife community; however, they do not prey on human beings nor have they ever. Unfortunately, we cannot say that of the human race. People just kill other people everyday. People simply slaughter, maim, and murder people every single day. Those are the ones we call criminals. Are the others who have a more dominant killing instinct the ones who go after each and every other living thing the moment its protections are lifted and some government official makes it "legal" to slaughter, maim, torture, and murder its species?

Isn't this whole fight about more than just the wolf? The lovers and the haters? Isn't this entire war between us and them indicative of the war that is waging in our own human society? The humane and the inhumane.

We have to fight back - to save the wolves but also to save ourselves.

This fight is about so much more than preserving the life of the wolf.
Take a stand on Tuesday, Alaska! We need every humane person to cast a vote and to make yourself known.

Save the Wolves Now!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Alaska - Stop Upcoming Aerial Hunting of Wolves

In just two weeks, Alaska will have a vote - thanks to the powerful Safari Club International and Gov. Sarah Palin’s administration who put hundreds of thousands of dollars into an effort to kill hundreds more wolves - to continue Alaska's aerial hunting program.

We cannot let this happen. We must do something to stop the power of their money. We can’t let their money buy this vote. Help Alaskans for Wildlife pay for ads in Alaska newspapers educating others about this situation and the upcoming vote.

We must continue our fight to protect wolves everywhere. Please help Alaskans for Wildlife -- a local, grassroots coalition of activists, hunters and citizens -- Defenders of Wildlife, and Earthjustice continue their fight to keep wolves safe and alive.

Alaska is out of control when it comes to the slaughter and outright murder of wolves. In just 2008, Alaska is responsible for gunning down 124 wolves by way of aerial hunting!

Alaska is responsible for the deaths of nearly 800 wolves by aerial hunters in the last five years.

In summer of 2008 - just this summer - Alaska is responsible for the murders and slaughter of 28 wolves who were killed near their dens! That includes wolf pups - 14 of them! - who were illegally killed by its state officials.

Time is running out! August 26, 2008, is the day! Alaskans will decide the fate of our wolf friends.

Additionally, I propose something further (since it all seems to come down to money and profit, doesn't it?): Educate every person you know - even if they are just nature lovers and have no opinion of wolves - about what Alaska is responsible for doing. In fact, it is time to get the word out about each and every state that brags about its natural beauty and lives off of drawing tourists who are nature lovers. Let everyone you know how these so-called "nature loving" states treat their nature and its natural inhabitants.

Let's face it. Ranchers really aren't afraid of wolves nor do they think that wolves are evil. They just don't want wolves around because ranchers want to kill their "steer" before a wolf does. When there are natural predators around (wolves for instance), the ranchers see it as the potential to jeopardize their bottomline, their profit, their income. It is all about the money, folks, so let's fight back - - by removing money from the equation. No more tourism dollars, no more Alaskan cruises, and finally, no more meat, leather boots or coats, etc. - - for the real hardcore activists among us.

I don't know about you, but I am willing to give up my time, money, trips to so-called "beautiful, natural" places, leather clothing, and even meat in order that we may once again catch the site of a wolf pack, wolf pups romping in tall grass, or to hear the howl of a wolf and the answering howl of another. I'd be willing to trade off most things in order to know that wolves still live and run free in the world that I live in. What about you?

Save the Wolves Now!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Thank You to District Judge Donald Molloy, Earthjustice, and Defenders of Wildlife

I wanted to post a "thank you" to Montana District Judge Donald Molloy of Missoula who reversed the gray wolf delisting throughout the Northern Rockies. The Judge acknowledged that the USFWS was premature in their delisting of wolves and as a result, the ruling imposed an unreasonable threat to the wolf population.

This is pending a ruling on the case filed by Earthjustice on behalf of Defenders of Wildlife (and many other caring organizations) challenging the delisting of wolves. The following is a statement made by Suzanne Asha Stone, a Northern Rockies wolf conservation specialist for Defenders of Wildlife:

“We’re very pleased with today’s decision to restore federal protections to wolves in the Northern Rockies until the ongoing case is ultimately decided by Judge Molloy. This is a very important first step, since it stops the continued and almost indiscriminate killing of wolves under the states’ management plans that could have put the long-term recovery of the wolf at risk.

“The delisting of wolves was inappropriate and illegal in large part because existing state management plans are inadequate to ensure the long term conservation of wolves in the region, allowing far too many wolves to be unnecessarily killed. Responsible, balanced management by the states would benefit wolves, ranchers, hunters and all Northern Rockies residents. While the court continues to weigh our challenge to the delisting decision, we will continue to work to improve the current state plans so that they maintain a healthy wolf population.”

Thank you District Judge Donald Molloy, Earthjustice, and Defenders of Wildlife!

In the meantime, let's all Save The Wolves Now!

Wolf Protections Update - Individual States

The latest update on wolf protection restoration is as follows:

Northern Rockies and Greater Yellowstone: Protections have been restored for now.

Idaho protections have been restored for now; however, Governor Otter has criticized the Federal Judge's ruling and is not happy about it. If you recall, Governor C.L. Butch Otter is the one who last year announced that he wants to be one of the first in the state of Idaho to shoot a wolf. Ron Gillette, also of Idaho (Idaho Anti-Wolf Coalition leader, to be exact) has advised a local reporter that "[i]t is going to be all-out war."

Wyoming protections have been restored, and Wyoming intends to fight the ruling.

A ruling restoring wolf protections by a district court judge in Montana will save hundreds of wolves by halting wolf sport hunting seasons this coming fall season not just in Montana but also in Idaho and Wyoming.

Defenders of Wildlife continues its fight for the wolf and has a Wolf Legal Defense Fund for those of you who wish to contribute. Earthjustice is also in need of contributions to keep fighting for our wolves. I know that these are tough economic times, but we will get through it. However, once our wolves are gone, they are gone. It has taken years to restore wolves in the areas where they are now threatened, so, please do what you can.

That is all that I know for now; however, I'd have to say that this is all great news! I will keep you posted.

Until then, for some firsthand information, be sure to stop by My Yellowstone Wolves.

And don't forget to Save The Wolves Now!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Wolf Hunt Halted - For Now

GREAT NEWS! ! A Federal Judge has made a ruling in favor of Earthjustice's request to stop the wolf killing while their case concerning the delisting of wolf protections pends before Court.

What this means is that wolves are once again protected under the Endangered Species Act while Earthjustice and other organizations fight to have this right restored to wolves.

The fight is not yet won. Earthjustice's attorneys in their Northern Rockies office will continue to fight for wolf protections. Please consider offering your support to Earthjustice, Defenders of Wildlife, and any other organization that you know of that are committed to restoring wolf protections.

Thank you Earthjustice on behalf of wolves - and we who love them - everywhere.

Until then, save the wolves now!

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Gray wolf hunts planned after de-listing

More bad news for our wolf friends, but the good news is that there are good people out there who are wiling to stand between the hunter hopefuls and the prospective hunted. Thank you, Earthjustice, for watching over our wild canine friends.

BOISE, Idaho - Good news for gray wolves in the northern Rocky Mountains: They no longer need federal protection. The bad news for the animals? Plans are already in the works to hunt them.Read more

Friday, March 14, 2008

Save Our Wolves - Aerial Hunting

While this video reflects what has been going on in Alaska with regard to the aerial hunting of wolves, it accurately reflects what proposed legislation right here in the U.S. will permit. It is just one of the ways that the ranchers in the U.S. wish to once more eliminate or reduce the wolf population. This happened once before, and we cannot let it happen again, friends.

Please educate yourselves about our wolves. They are ancestors of our dear canine friends who share our homes and our lives with us each and every day. We open our hearts and homes to canines who we make honorary family members. How can we stand by and watch our wild dogs be treated this way? !

Every time you reach down to pat your dog's head, please recognize that our wolves are in danger. Imagine your dog in the same predicament as above, and you will realize the unfairness and inhumane treatment of our wolves. Please do not stand by and watch this impending slaughter take place. Let's show some measure of loyalty to our canine friends while there is still hope.

Save The Wolves !

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Wolf Reintroduction - 10+ years ago

I picked up a fascinating and informative book today entitled "Decade of the Wolf - Returning the Wild to Yellowstone" by Douglas W. Smith and Gary Ferguson. This book talks about the reintroduction of wolves into Yellowstone some 10 plus years ago now and also documents up close and personal human interaction with these intriguing and now once more endangered animals.

Through tears, I read the following words as they were so prophetic (written some years back):

"Despite the dramatic success of the Yellowstone wolf reintroduction, no one can say for sure how these animals will fare in the long run. Their fates, after all, like the fates of most creatures, are connected to strands in the web of life over which they have no control." ("Decade of the Wolf" by Smith & Ferguson)

I am only on Page 8 of this book. In the pages before, I was moved by the authors' account of what it is like to come face to face with a wolf and how it is to lock eyes with these amazing creatures. I have had such experiences at Wolf Park in Battleground, Indiana, and I thought my feelings and reactions about it were maybe a bit "over the top" due to my compassion for and affinity with them; however, it appears that I was mistaken.

I encourage all who visit here to educate yourself about wolves. Get the real story about them. They are not harmful but are rather the harmed and placed in harm's way by those who fear and misunderstand them.

Until next time: Save The Wolves !

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Our Wolves in Greater Yellowstone and Northern Rockies in Danger

As of February 21, 2008, the Bush/Cheney Administration has our wolves who live in the Greater Yellowstone and the Northern Rockies in immediate danger.

The Bush/Cheney Administration has removed vital federal protections from our wolf friends - officially giving permission to trap, shoot, and kill up to 1,200 wolves.
Please note that number is 80% of the region's wild wolves!

Officials from Idaho desire to use aerial gunning to kill our wolves. Officials from Wyoming plan to trap and kill our wolves. Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana officials are proposing organized hunting of our dear and beloved canine friends.

It's not too late. Please take action. Save The Wolves Now!

Wolves Made Out To Be Villains Once Again

I cannot believe this is happening again! It has taken years and years of hard work, funding, and legal battles to reintroduce the wolf into our country again. Then, Bush - in all of his infinite wisdom - takes it upon himself to make yet another destructive decision. Ahhhh, apparently, he feels that he is running out of time to upset and offend everyone in the United States. In his last year of presidency, why not make sure that no stone goes unturned? How about an assault on animal activists and conservationists? I'm sure it isn't the first one of its kind; however, he has opened up yet another can of worms.

This country loves its canine companions. We love our dogs. Did you know that our furry friends are ancestors of the wolf? That is why it is no mistake that I refer to wolves as ours. They are our own, and we must help them. Without them, we would not have our dogs with us today, and if we turn our backs on our wolves, we in some measure fail our canine companions as well. For, if our canine companions could comprehend the upcoming slaughter of their extended family (wolves), they would surely take action, and they would fight to the death to save our wolves.

With time running out with the current administration, what does the unforgettable duo of Bush/Cheney do? Take away the protections of the wolf in this country again. It never ceases to amaze me what Bush can actually get done when he wants to get something done or how quickly he can accomplish such a task.

Between the lack of education and understanding of wolves and ranchers, the removal of the wolf from the endangered species list was inevitable. This has left our wolves helpless to hunters and aerial gunning - or worse. This should not surprise anyone who resides in this country - Slaughter is one of Bush's specialties.

A recent announcement gave federal rule to Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming to move forward with plans to legalize the hunting of these amazing animals ... this action will doom the future of the ancestors of our canine companions.