Self-entitlement—on steroids

Talk about a bad case of self-entitlement—when it comes to wildlife, Idaho hunters give new meaning to the words. Ever since wolves were removed from the endangered species list, hunters in Idaho have been making a federal case of the fact that their “game” is feeding wild predators (as nature intended).

Meanwhile, you hear next to nothing about poachers, who take a bigger bite of the “resource” than wolves ever could. Their reaction to poaching seems to be: “Why get excited about that? At least they’re humans like us.”

To challenge poaching is to challenge all human entitlement to prey species who here long before humans even set foot on this continent.

It’s another case of the “it’s all here for us” mentality—on steroids.

Text and Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson. All Rights Reserved

Text and Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson. All Rights Reserved

Like Marmots? Hate Contest Hunts? Here’s Some Contact Info

A marmot (Alias, “Rock Chuck.”), on the lookout for evil in the form of “derby” hunters.

Marmot Photos Copyright Jim Robertson

Marmot Photos Copyright Jim Robertson

For information about this sadistic “event,” see: Idaho Marmot-Killing Contest a Transference of Victimhood
Contact Idaho Fish and “Game” personnel re. the Rock Chuck event. IDFG has no say (because they are ruled by the Idaho legislature) except to perhaps monitor the hunt and check if hunting licenses have been purchased. However, it wouldn’t hurt to raise a storm with IDFG officials – who could then say to the media, they’d been getting calls of protest. Here are the names:
Magic Valley Regional Supervisor Jerome Hansen: jerome.hansen@idfg.idaho.gov
IDFG Director Virgil Moore: virgil.moore@idfg.idaho.gov
IDFG Magic Valley Commissioner (appointed by Gov Otter in 2013, the guy has said he doesn’t like wolves):


Mark Doerr
, of Kimberly, is the Commissioner representing the Magic Valley Region.  mark.doerr@idfg.idaho.gov

Also:

The Idaho Division of Tourism Development is dedicated to the growth of the tourism industry in Idaho and provides information for consumers and assistance to our tourism partner businesses across the state. We market the state’s travel opportunities throughout the West and the world with a variety of programs and partnerships. Contact us directly by using the form below or find out more about our programs and services.

Facebook page for the Rock Chuck Derby, set for May 14-18, hosted by Outlaws and Angels Bar,  Highway 30, Bliss, Idaho.
(So far, 304 people “like” this page since it came on FB March 14, 2014.)
Facebook page for “Outlaws and Angels” Bar -
And you may want to see the following, about a boy who appreciates marmots:  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2193986/Matteo-Walch-8-strikes-remarkable-friendship-clan-marmots-Austria.html
                                          _______________
Young marmots are dependent on their mothers this time of year. Derby contestants seek to kill the largest marmots for the “Weigh in,” leaving young kits like these to starve and die slowly…
marmot-yb-004

 

 

Poachers kill more than wolves do, Idaho officials say

[Enough said? Now, how many do trophy hunters kill compared to wolves?]

Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson

Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson

>But he said if predators were killing as many game animals as poachers do, people would take action. “Holy buckets, we would be setting budgets aside,” Cummings said. “We would develop a group to figure out what it was and we would develop a plan to deal with it, but we won’t even talk about what impact this has on wildlife.”<

http://www.spokesman.com/stories/2014/apr/19/poachers-kill-more-than-wolves-do-idaho-officials/

LEWISTON – Poachers are likely killing far more game animals than wolves are, state wildlife officials in North Idaho say.

Officials told the Lewiston Tribune that last year in North Idaho they confirmed poaching of 30 elk, four moose, 13 mule deer and 57 whitetail deer, the newspaper reported Friday.

Officials say a realistic detection rate is 5 percent, meaning poachers are likely killing about 600 elk, 80 moose, 260 mule deer and 1,000 whitetail annually.

“It’s real easy for people to blow a gasket about wolf predation,” said Idaho Fish and Game District Conservation Officer George Fischer. “They are very passionate about it, they are very irate about it and they are livid about it. Yet there is a two-legged wolf out there that is probably killing as many or more than wolves. Wolves are causing an impact, there is no doubt about it; I don’t want to downplay that at all, but two-legged wolves are probably killing more or stealing more game than wolves. That is the shock-and-awe message.”

Barry Cummings, an Idaho Fish and Game conservation officer, said many people don’t report wildlife crimes because they don’t consider it a crime against them. The fine in Idaho for illegally killing an elk is $750, while the fine for illegally killing a moose is $10,000.

But he said if predators were killing as many game animals as poachers do, people would take action.

Mark Hill, a senior conservation officer for the Idaho Department of Fish and Game at Lewiston, said it’s not completely clear why people who are aware of poaching don’t turn lawbreakers in.

“I don’t know if it’s because they almost look at themselves in the mirror and say, ‘If I turn in so and so, I’m going to be reflecting on some of the things I do and they will turn me in,’ ” Hill said.

Idaho Marmot-Killing Contest a Transference of Victimhood

While it’s too bad about Hannah losing her battle with cancer 6 years ago, why do hundreds of innocent yellow-bellied marmots (ignorantly referred to as “rock chucks”) have to pay with their lives for four years afterwards? The event already includes a motorcycle run, a walk/run and an auction, so why kill marmots at all? Hasn’t there been enough death?

http://magicvalley.com/news/local/rock-chuck-derby-in-bliss-raises/article_bc6fd825-24e7-5d5d-ac25-d3028b9e9b92.html

Rock Chuck Derby in Bliss Raises $300,000

April 27, 2013

517b5d20222aa_preview-620

BLISS • Holding the lifeless rock chuck by the tail, Jeff Huber dumped the bundle of fur into a five-gallon bucket, put it on a scale and waited for the results.

Huber was hoping for a high number, but the weight failed short of the 16.8 pound world record.

“It’s OK, I’ll just go out again for another one,” he said. “It’s a three-day event. I have time to get a bigger one.”

Huber was one of the 300 hunters registered in the sixth annual Hannah Bates Memorial Rock Chuck Derby.

The event includes a motorcycle run, a walk/run and auction, but the main goal is to shoot the biggest rock chuck and bring it back to the saloon where it can be weighed by judges. The winner will be announced Sunday and will receive a gun as a prize.

Hunters gather from all over the nation to participate, said Sandee Bates, Hannah’s mom.

The derby became dedicated in Hannah’s honor after the 20-year-old lost her battle with cancer in 2008. Ever since, the event raised more than $300,000, Bates said.

The money has gone to school athletic programs, local nonprofits and children’s cancer support groups.

“Every year it amazes me how many people show up to show their support,” Bates said. “People are so generous every year.”

As the event continues to grow, more people get to learn Hannah’s story and leave knowing they are supporting a good cause, said Carol Wood, one of the event planners and who knew Hannah.

“A little bit of Hannah touches of them,” she said.

Huber said in years past, he normally just participates in the motorcycle ride. This year, he and his son, Kameron McGarity, 14, decided to try hunting.

“We’ll be back,” he said. “We can get a bigger one.”

Rockchuck Derby Starts In:
24 days
23
:
28
:

http://rockchuckderby.com/

RULES AND REGULATIONS

Five Day Hunt: Wednesday, May 14 – Sunday, May 18, 2014
Location: Outlaws & Angels

Registration Locations:
- Outlaws & Angels – Bliss, Idaho
- Cal’s Log Tavern** – Twin Falls, Idaho
- TJ’s Lounge** – Buhl, Idaho
*Registration at these locations ends May 10

Registration Fee:
Adults $30
Youth $20 14 and under

Winner Classes:
Adults: Top 5
Youth: Top 5
Archery: Top 3
Muzzleloader: Top 3

Weigh In Times:
Wednesday, May 14: 2PM – 7PM
Thursday, May 15: 2PM – 7PM
Friday, May 16: 2PM – 7PM
Saturday, May 17: 2PM – 7PM
Sunday, May 18: 10AM – 1PM

All State of Idaho Hunting Regulations will apply and hunters must have a valid hunting license, or hunter education number.

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Wednesday, May 14
Kickoff
Registration: 10AM – 10PM
Rock Chuck Weigh In: 2PM – 7PM
Band: Jam Kitty 8PM

Thursday, May 15
Registration: 10AM – 10PM
Rock Chuck Weigh In: 2PM – 7PM
Band: Jam Kitty 8PM

Friday, May 16
Registration: 10AM – NOON *last day of registration
Rock Chuck Weigh In: 2PM – 7PM
Band: Dirty Johnny 8PM

Saturday, May 17
BIKER APPRECIATION DAY
BLOODING MARY MORNING 10AM – 1AM
Rock Chuck Weigh In: 2PM – 7PM
Band: Dirty Johnny 8PM
Free Chili: 4PM – 7PM

Sunday, May 18
BLOODING MARY MORNING 10AM – 1AM
Rock Chuck Weigh In: 10AM – 1PM
Free BBQ: 2PM
AWARD CEREMONY: 4PM

Hunting reduces local ID wolf numbers

F&G releases 2013 wolf report


By GREG MOORE
Express Staff Writer

A pair of Idaho wolves rests in the snow. Photo courtesy of Idaho Fish and Game

About half the wolves living in the Wood River Valley and surrounding area last year were killed by hunters and government control actions, leaving about 42 wolves living in the area following the end of the 2013-14 hunting season, according to figures recently made public by the Idaho Department of Fish and Game.

     During the hunting season, which ended in the Southern Mountains Zone on March 31, hunters killed 26 wolves, well under the quota of 40.

     On Friday, the department released its 2013 Idaho Wolf Monitoring Progress Report, which estimates the wolf population statewide at 659, down from a high of 856 prior to the establishment of hunting seasons in 2009. The number remains well above the 150 wolves and 15 breeding pairs required to keep gray wolves off the endangered species list under the 2009 delisting rule.

     The report stated that at the end of last year, Idaho contained 107 wolf packs, down from 117 in 2012. Generalizing from the packs whose members could be counted, the department calculated a statewide average pack size of 5.4 wolves, down 33 percent from the 8.1 wolves per pack that existed during the three years prior to 2009.

     The report states that 28 wolves were counted in nine packs in the Southern Mountains Wolf Zone, which includes the Wood River Valley. However, it points out that the number of individual wolves seen cannot be relied on for an accurate total. If the zone’s nine packs are typical of packs throughout the state, about 49 wolves were living there by the end of the year.

     The report documents 54 wolf mortalities in the zone last year. Thirty wolves were killed through government control actions, 21 by hunters and three as the result of other human causes.

     Twenty-three pups were known to have been born, though only eight survived.

http://www.mtexpress.com/index2.php?ID=2007151522

 

Lynx Harmed by Idaho Trapping

The Canada lynx is one of Idaho’s coolest cats and among the rarest of wild felines in the United States, but that hasn’t prevented them from being caught in recreational fur-trappers body-crushing traps and snares. At least three have been killed or caught by bobcat trappers in the last two years.

Because the lynx is protected as Threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), any trapping is illegal. An agency permitting such trapping violates the ESA unless it has an approved plan that avoids or reduces “incidental take” or unintentional harm to the species. Idaho Department of Fish and Game lacks such a permit, and today, Western Watersheds Project and our allies sent the state a Notice of Intent to Sue if it doesn’t start protecting lynx and complying with the ESA in the next 60 days.

The threats to lynx from trapping just add to the issues this species is facing; the species is specially-adapted to feed on snowshoe-hares (video) and to survive in cold weather. With rising temperatures and reduced snowpack under climate change, the lynx is already losing important habitat. Accidentally killing them in traps is an unnecessary – and unacceptable – harm to the species already at risk.

WWP and our allies, Center for Biological Diversity and Friends of the Clearwater, will continue to press for full protection for lynx in Idaho and across the West.

lynx

 

Wolf populations in Northern Rockies states Down 6%

April 5, 2014 by 

Associated Press

Gray wolf numbers in the Northern Rockies have declined about 6 percent from 2011, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Congress removed the wolves from the federal endangered species list in 2011. A state-by-state breakdown of year-end 2013 minimum wolf count and percentage change over two years:

–Idaho: 659 wolves; down 14 percent

–Montana: 627 wolves, down 4 percent

–Oregon: 61 wolves; up 110 percent(asterisk)

–Utah: 0 wolves; no change

–Washington: 38 wolves; up 46 percent(asterisk)

–Wyoming: 306 wolves, down 7 percent

–NORTHERN ROCKIES TOTAL: 1,691 wolves; down 6 percent

(asterisk)includes wolves only in eastern portion of state

Source

copyrighted wolf in river

Rockies Gray Wolf Numbers Steady Despite Hunting

BILLINGS, Mont. April 4, 2014 (AP)

State and federal agencies said Friday there were a minimum of 1,691 wolves at the end of 2013.

That’s virtually unchanged from the prior year even as state wildlife agencies adopted aggressive tactics to drive down wolf numbers.

Under pressure from livestock and hunting groups, Idaho officials have used helicopters to shoot packs. Montana has eased hunting and trapping rules.

Federal wolf recovery coordinator Mike Jimenez says he expects the population to gradually decline over time in the face of the states’ efforts, but to remain healthy.

A pending proposal would lift protections for wolves across much of the remaining Lower 48 states.

http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/wireStory/rockies-gray-wolf-numbers-steady-hunting-23193709

copyrighted wolf in river

Petition to stop the slaughter of ravens in Idaho

A couple of weeks ago, I came across a small news article explaining that the Idaho Department of Fish and Game had received a permit from the United State Dept. of Agriculture (I think it was Ag) to kill 4000 ravens. This is proposed under the guise of protecting the sage-grouse, which, I believe, is being added to the endangered species list. The sage-grouse does need protection but here’s the problem. There are 19 factors that have caused their populations to decline, most the result of human activity. Predation by other creatures is #12 and ravens are the only ones that have been singled out, although there are many. Killing ravens will do little if anything at all to mitigate the problems the sage-grouse face.

I was so upset that I took it on myself to create a petition and I hope some of you will consider signing it.

There is a bias among many people against ravens and crows–their voices are not lyrical and some people see them as bullies or as symbols of evil. But recent studies show that they are among the most intelligent creatures on earth and actually may be the most intelligent. They have complex societies, young stay with their parents for years and they even have a ritual that humans would call a funeral when one of their own dies. Killing 4000 of these remarkable birds will reverberate through their community for generations.

You’ll find my petition here: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/114/2…-4000-ravens/#

And just so you know, I have NO financial or professional interest in this. It is a simple act of love. I have long adored ravens and crows. And Edgar Allen Poe, too.

Big huge thanks to all who take the time to sign.

Photo Copyright Jim Robertson

Photo Copyright Jim Robertson

Back Off the Wolf Killing Crusade Idaho

copyrighted Hayden wolf in lodgepoles

Year after year, Idaho demonstrates its intolerance for wolves. Idaho Department of Fish and Game, while tasked with preserving all of Idaho’s wildlife, continues to ratchet up hunting, trapping and snaring pressure on Idaho’s diminishing wolf population.

Around 600 wolves live in Idaho, which is also home to 83 times more coyotes, 33 times more bears, and four-to-five times more mountain lions than wolves. All of these species eat other animals to survive and all sometimes attack livestock. But Idaho reserves its special treatment for wolves alone.

Idaho’s wolf population has fallen consistently since 2009. Every year wolves have been under state management, Idaho has expanded, extended and loosened wolf hunting and trapping regulations. It’s an indefensible notion that “adequate regulatory mechanisms” are in place, as mandated by the Endangered Species Act for the oversight period under state management.

Idaho claimed it would manage wolves like any other species. No Idaho wildlife management authority can honestly defend this position.

Actions by Gov. Butch Otter and the state Legislature indicate they believe IDFG isn’t effective enough in killing wolves. The Wolf Control Board bill, “the wolf-kill bill,” was a priority the governor chose for his January State of the State address. Now, 400,000 taxpayer dollars for killing wolves is likely to be a recurring expense. Legislative sponsors and supporters repeatedly stated their intent to reduce Idaho’s wolf population to 150 wolves and 15 breeding pairs, the federal minimum.

As the state of Idaho and IDFG reach to further extremes to kill more and more wolves, these actions aren’t going unnoticed.

Far beyond the scope of wildlife management, these practices are quickly giving a black eye to Idaho’s reputation across the country. Idaho is not an island. It does not exist in a vacuum. If the state walks far enough out on a limb, the limb will break, bringing Idaho back to earth under an increasingly focused spotlight.

As fewer people take up hunting, those who enjoy Idaho’s nature in a nonconsumptive way steadily increase. IDFG’s one-dimensional revenue stream from hunting and fishing licenses and tag sales cannot keep pace with fiscal challenges. It’s time to realign economic realities with income-generating constituencies.

Recognizing the increasing difficulty of remaining solvent with growing bills, Director Virgil Moore commendably organized the 2012 IDFG Wildlife Summit to modernize the agency. Unfortunately, necessary innovations are still not forthcoming. Instead, the agency continues pursuing scientifically unsupportable programs, such as excessive and expensive lethal wolf removal and expanding trapping.

Recently, IDFG conducted its sixth costly wolf eradication action in the Lolo, killing 23 wolves from a helicopter, to artificially bolster a declining elk herd, even though IDFG has acknowledged the decline was precipitated by dramatic changes to habitat and vegetation that support elk.

This spring, IDFG hired a professional hunter/trapper to kill wolf packs in the same designated wilderness where wolves were originally reintroduced. IDFG has also declared another goal – reducing wolf populations by 60 percent in the same wilderness.

Remarkably, as this continues, Idaho’s statewide elk population of 107,000 has been growing since 2010. The presence of wolves equating to poor hunting opportunity is a fallacy. Wyoming, with the third largest wolf population in the West, reported their three largest elk harvests on record in the past four years, with 45 percent success in 2013. Hunters can coexist with wolves while maintaining a robust hunting tradition.

Efforts to kill wolves on Idaho’s wild landscapes, especially in designated wilderness – where wolves belong – will never yield the long-term results the agency desires. IDFG continues burning precious dollars on failing programs, while gaining increasingly widespread negative publicity as the black sheep of the nation. For the sake of our beautiful state and all of its wildlife, let’s hope that Idaho soon corrects course.

Garrick Dutcher is the program director for the Idaho-based national nonprofit organization Living With Wolves.

Read more here: http://www.idahostatesman.com/2014/04/01/3111241/back-off-wolf-crusade-and-dispel.html#storylink=cpy