Oct 24, 2016 12:45 PM MDTUpdated: Oct 24, 2016 12:49 PM MDTGREAT FALLS –A wolf shot in September while killing sheep near Judith Gap in central Montana spent the previous three months traveling about 700 miles, starting in western Washington, according to a press release from Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks.
When federal Wildlife Services killed the 2-year-old male on September 29, it was wearing a collar that had been affixed in February by Washington Fish and Wildlife biologists north of Spokane.
The wolf left its pack in June, turning east into Idaho, then north in Canada. It re-entered the United States on July 4 near Eureka, Montana, heading southeast.
“By late July, it was on the Rocky Mountain Front and Washington Fish and Wildlife called to let me know,” said Ty Smucker said, a wolf specialist with MT FWP.
Smucker was notified of the animal’s location about once a week.
“The wolf came out on the Rocky Mountain Front just east of Bean Lake on July 22,” Smucker said. “Then it spent over a month and a half moving around the lower Dearborn River Country, before heading toward Square Butte west of Great Falls on September 13.”
From Square Butte, the wolf turned east, keeping to the north side of the Little Belt Mountains, emerging on the foothills of the Little Belt Mountains west of Judith Gap on September 22, Smucker said.
Responding to a report of a wolf killing sheep, federal Wildlife Services killed the collared wolf on September 29 as it was leaving a band of sheep that it had been chasing and feeding on.
“It had to travel at least 700 miles total,” Smucker said.
The young wolf was probably looking for a mate, he added.
“Wolf packs consist of breeding pairs that generally produce 4-6 pups each spring,” he said. “As young wolves mature they typically disperse from their natal pack in search of potential mates and vacant territories in which to start their own packs.”
Sometimes that search can take the animal on a long journey. In 2015, a wolf left its pack’s territory west of Missoula and ended up 600 miles north in British Columbia.
While FWP occasionally receives reports of wolves in the Little Belt Mountains of central Montana, there are currently no known packs of wolves maintaining territories or producing pups in the area.
In addition, FWP does not capture and relocate problem wolves.
Montana’s wolf population has stabilized for the past eight years at a minimum of more than 500.
“Public hunting and trapping of wolves helps manage wolf numbers in Montana,” Smucker said. “Overall, Montana’s wolf population appears to be doing quite well.”
There’s a very real David vs Goliath conflict now underway in the global energy markets. On one side is a loose coalition made up of renewable energy producers and advocates, individuals who are increasingly concerned about global warming, environmentalists, technophiles, people promoting a democratization of the energy markets, and energy efficiency advocates. On the other side is a vast and powerful global fossil fuel industry backed by wealthy billionaires like the Koch Brothers and various national and nationally supported corporations around the world.
Up to 3.4 Trillion Dollars in Bad Fossil Fuel Investments
By the end of the next 1-3 decades, one set of these two forces will have won out — which will, in turn, decide whether the world continues along the path of climate devastation that is business as usual fossil fuel burning, or sees a rapid reduction in burning-related emissions to near zero which will help to…
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Thursday, October 20, 2016 9:53 am
The state Department of Fish and Wildlife has stopped its hunt for the Profanity Peak wolf pack now that the grazing season on public lands in the Colville National Forest is over for the year.
Agency Director Jim Unsworth lifted his previous order to kill off the pack Wednesday. The department, though, will continue to monitor the four remaining wolves in the pack, an adult female and three young, and target them again if they harm livestock this year.
The pack once numbered 12 wolves. Since Aug. 5, state wildlife staff members have shot and killed seven members of the pack. Another wolf, a pup, is presumed to have died of natural causes.
In all, the department documented 15 dead or injured cows. Of those, 10 were confirmed to have been preyed upon by wolves. The other five probably were, according to the department.
The pack is one of 19 documented in the state so far. Most are in the eastern third of the state, where they are not protected by the federal Endangered Species Act.
Under state policy, the department can take lethal action against wolves if its field staff confirm four or more attacks on livestock in a calendar year, or six or more in two consecutive calendar years.
According to the department, ranchers in the area used by the Profanity Peak pack moved cattle onto public lands for grazing in early June. The wildlife department captured two adult members of the pack and fitted them with GPS radio collars, allowing the department to monitor the pack’s movements. By July 8, the department confirmed the first calf kill.
It was no surprise to some: Ranchers and local officials in Ferry County predicted problems with the pack, and in 2014 called for the pack’s elimination, according to the Stevens County Cattlemen’s Association.
The state is targeting the pack at public expense — as yet uncounted — to protect cattle grazing by ranchers on public lands and has raised a storm of controversy in Washington and beyond that has yet to subside.
The department promises a final report on its actions with regard to the pack next month.
Meanwhile, wolf recovery is expected to build in Washington.
Wolves were trapped, poisoned and hunted out of existence in Washington in the early 1900s, in part by ranchers to keep them away from sheep and cattle. Wolves began recolonizing the state in 2008, when the first packs were confirmed in Washington, from populations in Idaho and British Columbia.
There were about 90 wolves in the state as of early 2016, most of them documented in packs in Northeastern Washington.
Ballot Initiative I-177 is a sensible measure to protect people, pets and wildlife from trapping on Montana’s wild public lands. Please vote yes on Nov. 8.
While trapping will still be allowed on private lands throughout the state, I-177 would ensure that Montana’s national forests, state parks and other public lands are kept free of cruel, archaic traps that injure and kill many animals by accident every year.
This measure would not limit hunting on public lands, contrary to the claims of its detractors.
Your yes vote will help save thousands of animals annually from these brutal traps. Let the world know that Montana cares about its wildlife by voting yes on I-177. Visit www.yeson177.org for more information.
Ever since human-forced climate change started to kick off dramatically worsening polar warming events in the 2000s, the Arctic has struggled to cool down to normal temperatures during fall and winter. However, for 2016, this failure of Arctic cooling appears to have grown even more pronounced.
Over the past few weeks, temperature anomalies for the entire region north of the 66th parallel have ranged between 3 and 5 degrees Celsius above average. These are very extreme departures — ones we typically have only seen during winter when the poleward heat energy transfer effects of human-caused climate change are at their strongest. But this fall, a north-bound flood of warmth has turned the Arctic into a glaring global hot spot — featuring the highest above normal temperature readings for any region of the Earth.
New Record Daily Lows for Arctic Sea Ice
So much added heat has had a marked effect…
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OLYMPIA – The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) has suspended its pursuit of the remaining members of a wolf pack that preyed on cattle throughout the summer in northeast Washington.
WDFW Director Jim Unsworth today lifted his previous order authorizing staff to take lethal action to stop predation by the Profanity Peak wolf pack now that most livestock are being moved off federal grazing allotments in the Colville National Forest.
He noted, however, that the department will continue to monitor the four remaining wolves – an adult female and three juveniles – and will renew efforts to remove wolves if they resume preying on livestock this year.
“The goal of our action was to stop predations on livestock in the near future,” Unsworth said. “With the pack reduced in size from 12 members to four and most livestock off the grazing allotments, the likelihood of depredations in the near future is low.”
Since Aug. 5, state wildlife managers have shot and killed seven members of the pack after non-lethal deterrence measures failed to stop the pack from preying on cattle in the grazing area in Ferry County. Another wolf, a pup, is presumed to have died of natural causes.
As of Oct. 3, WDFW had documented 15 dead or injured cattle, including 10 confirmed and five probable wolf depredations.
The Profanity Peak pack is one of 19 wolf packs documented in Washington earlier this year. Sixteen of those packs – including four identified since the previous year – are located in the eastern third of the state, where wolves were delisted from the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA) in 2009.
Unsworth said the department’s action against the Profanity Peak pack was consistent with both the state’s Wolf Conservation and Management Plan and a new protocol for the lethal removal of wolves developed this year by WDFW in conjunction with an 18-member advisory group composed of environmentalists, livestock producers and hunters.
Under that protocol, WDFW can take lethal action against wolves only if field staff confirms four or more attacks on livestock within a calendar year, or six or more attacks within two consecutive calendar years. The protocol also requires ranchers to employ specified non-lethal measures designed to deter wolves from preying on their livestock before WDFW will take lethal action against wolves.
Donny Martorello, WDFW wolf policy lead, said both of the ranchers who lost livestock to the Profanity Peak pack met that requirement by using range riders to help keep watch over their herds, and by removing or securing cattle carcasses to avoid attracting wolves. One rancher, he said, also turned his calves out to pasture at a higher weight to improve their chance of surviving an attack by predators.
Once the number of dead and injured cattle reached the threshold for lethal action, WDFW took incremental steps to remove wolves from the pack, as specified in the protocol.
Key events in the department’s involvement with the Profanity Peak pack include:
- Early June: Ranchers arrived with their livestock on federal grazing allotments. WDFW field staff captured two adult members of the Profanity Peak pack and fitted them with GPS radio-collars, allowing the department to monitor the pack’s movements.
- July 8: WDFW confirmed the first calf killed by wolves.
- July 12: WDFW documented two probable wolf attacks, one of which was on a second rancher’s allotment.
- Aug. 3: WDFW confirmed the fourth and fifth wolf attack on cattle and documented three probable wolf attacks. Per the protocol, the WDFW director authorized staff to remove some members of the pack to deter further depredation.
- Aug. 5: WDFW removed two female wolves from the Profanity Peak pack.
- Aug.18-19: The director ended his authorization for lethal removal after 14 days without a depredation. The next day, he authorized the removal of up to the full pack after field staff documented four more wolf attacks, two confirmed and two probable.
- Aug. 21-Sept. 29: WDFW removed five more wolves from the Profanity Peak pack.
- Oct 3: WDFW documented the last depredation on cattle by the Profanity Peak pack.
- Oct 18: WDFW suspended lethal removal of wolves in the Profanity Peak pack.
Martorello said WDFW will continue to closely monitor the pack and will renew efforts to remove wolves if they return to preying on livestock this year.
Ferry County Sheriff Ray Maycumber said his staff will take a defensive position and monitor the movements of the adult female wolf for signs of conflict with people, pets, or livestock in lowland areas.
WDFW will issue a complete report of its management actions regarding the Profanity Peak pack next month.
The state’s Wolf Conservation and Management Plan is available on WDFW’s website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/conservation/gray_wolf/mgmt_plan.html.
WDFW’s protocol for removing wolves that prey on livestock is available at http://wdfw.wa.gov/conservation/gray_wolf/livestock/LethalRemovalProtocolGrayWolvesWashingtonDuringRecovery_05312016.pdf
Pollution and weather
Animals are dying all over the world in huge numbers because of the polluted seas and air. Millions of fish and massive numbers of various marine creatures are washing ashore dead. Birds are falling dead from the sky, and millions of poultry and wildlife are dying from avian flu. Land animals are also dying in large numbers from disease.
< http://static.pn.am/images/l_art1_eng.gif> October 19, 2016
PanARMENIAN.Net – Peru’s environmental agency is investigating the deaths of some 10,000 frogs whose bodies have been found in a river in the south of the country. According to a BBC report, a campaign group says pollution in the River Coata is to blame for the deaths. It says the government has ignored pleas for the construction of a sewage treatment plant in the area.
The Titicaca water frog is an endangered species that is found only in the huge freshwater lake shared by Peru and Bolivia and its tributaries.
The cases of mass deaths across the world are not rare. And here are some of them:
On December 31, 2010, about 2,000 red-winged blackbirds fell dead out of the sky over a small town in Arkansas, U.S. There were so many that it took workers two days to remove all the birds’ carcasses from the town’s streets, sidewalks and lawns. The deaths were all the more mysterious because the birds in question don’t normally fly at night. So, they should have been asleep in their roost. None of the dead birds were found on the ground of the wooded area where they roosted, so officials ruled out disease or poisoning as the cause of their deaths, reports said. Instead, it was assumed a weather-related event caused the mysterious mass die-off. Despite that assumption, however, workers cleaning up the birds’ carcasses wore environmental-protection suits just in case.
Bats with white-nose syndrome
An estimated 6.7 million bats have died since 2006 because of an outbreak of white-nose syndrome, a fast-moving disease that has wiped out entire colonies and left caves littered with the bones of dead bats. The epidemic is considered the worst wildlife disease outbreak in North American history and shows no signs of slowing down. It threatens to drive some bats extinct and could do real harm to the pest-killing services that bats provide, worth billions of dollars each year, in the United States. Typically the disease kills 70 percent to 90 percent of bats in an affected hibernaculum (the area where bats gather to hibernate for the winter). In some cases, the mortality rate has been 100 percent, wiping out entire colonies. Some caves that once hosted hundreds of thousands of bats are now virtually empty.
In late 2008, 60 pilot whales beached themselves along the rocky coast of the southern Australian island state of Tasmania. A week later, 150 long-finned pilot whales did the same. Then, in early January 2009, 45 sperm whales perished when they stranded themselves on a Tasmanian sandbar. And, lastly, in the most egregious in the string of incidents, 194 pilot whales and a handful of bottleneck dolphins beached themselves along the same coastline in March. By the time officials arrived at the scene, 140 were dead. Using stretchers, small boats and jet skis, more than 100 volunteers managed to save 54. But with four beaching incidents in as many months, scientists found themselves at a loss to explain why the majestic mammals had gone ashore.
Over 50 pink flamingos have been found dead in southern France, victims of freezing weather conditions that have gripped Europe in February 2012. The birds succumbed to the cold after being trapped in the frozen water and left unable to fly away. Rescuers were able to save several weakened flamingos and send them to a bird park.
In 2004, an estimated 300 hippopotamuses in Uganda’s Queen Elizabeth National Park died after drinking water contaminated with anthrax. The lethal bacteria can frequently be found in the pools of stagnant water that form during Uganda’s dry season. The country has suffered from occasional anthrax outbreaks since the 1950s and because of their semiaquatic nature, hippos are particularly vulnerable to contamination.
In July 2010, for example, about 500 dead Magellan Penguins washed up on the shores of Brazil over the course of just 10 days. Autopsies on the animals revealed that their stomachs were entirely empty, indicating that they likely starved to death.
In early 2010, a bitterly cold and snowy winter followed a summer drought, preventing many species in Mongolia from grazing adequately. The disaster resulted in the deaths of millions of camels, goats, sheep, cows, yaks and horses.
In May 2015, 60,000 saiga antelopes died in just four days, and no one really knows why. Saiga – a species of dog-sized antelope with Gonzo-like noses, native to central Asia – are critically endangered. Saigas live in a few herds in Kazakhstan, one small herd in Russia and a herd in Mongolia. The herds congregate with other herds during the cold winters, as well as when they migrate to other parts of Kazakhstan, during the fall and spring. The herds split up to calve their young during the late spring and early summer.
In May 2013, a virus never before seen in the U.S., called porcine epidemic diarrhea, quickly spread to 27 states and claimed the lives of six million piglets in less than a year. Scientists think the virus, which does not infect humans or other animals, came from China, but it’s unclear how it got into the country and wiped out at least three percent of the nation’s pig herd.
In March 2011, boaters awakened to find millions of dead anchovies and sardines washed up around their vessels in a Southern California marina. The fish were so thick in some places that boats couldn’t get out of the marina.
In late 2005 and January 2006, 200 endangered sea turtles were found dead along beaches on the coast of El Salvador. Scientists’ best guess at to the cause of this mysterious die-off is that the turtles fell victim to harmful algal blooms, known as a red tide.
In January 2009, hundreds of Brown Pelicans were found dead or acting peculiar along the California coast. Though researchers were unclear as to what exactly triggered the birds’ illness, the mysterious mass die-off may have been due to unseasonable weather patterns that threw off the Pelicans’ eating habits.
A Whitehorse father and son must pay $5,000 to the Yukon Turn In Poachers
fund after they were sentenced for wasting the entire carcass of a cow moose
that attacked them.
By Vic Istchenko,
< http://www.cbc.ca/news/cbc-news-online-news-staff-list-1.1294364> CBC News
Posted: Oct 21, 2016 7:55 AM CT Last Updated: Oct 21, 2016 7:55 AM CT
A Whitehorse father and son must pay $5,000 to the Yukon Turn In Poachers
fund after they were sentenced for wasting the entire carcass of a cow moose
that attacked them.
As of the most recent update from the Joint Typhoon Warning Center, minimum central pressures in Super Typhoon Haima had plunged to 900 hPa. That’s nearly as low as those for Typhoon Haiyan at peak strength (895 hPa). Haima is running in toward the northern Philippines packing maximum sustained winds of 160 mph with gusts to 190 mph (somewhat lower than Haiyan’s peak sustained winds of 185 mph). As a result, we have a storm following a similar track to the comparable strength 2013 super-typhoon which caused so much severe loss and damage during 2013.
(Haima strengthens over hotter than normal ocean waters as it tracks towards the Philippines. Image source: NOAA.)
Record Hot Global Ocean Conditions A Contributing Factor
Like Haiyan, Haima has emerged over much warmer than normal waters in the range of 1-2 C above average temperature. Warmer waters at depth have also helped…
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