Tell Montana Governor Bullock to Protect Bison – Veto HB 194

FROM

Buffalo Field Campaign (BFC)
March 2015

[NOTE from All-Creatures.org: The confinment, harassment and slaughter of bison is because cattle ranchers do not want wild animals “competing for food” with their cows. GO VEGAN and you will help save bison!]

bison and cattle

ACTION

HB 194 is another attempt by special interests to block the resoration of wild bison in Montana. This act must not become law.

Contact Montana Governor Steve Bullock and let him know you stand for recovering America’s wild buffalo. If you live out of state, let him know why you visit Montana and what is important to you. Tell him to veto HB 194.

Sign an online petition here.

And/or better yet,make direct contact:

Governor Steve Bullock
Office of the Governor
Montana State Capitol
P.O. Box 200801
Helena, MT 59620-0801
phones (855) 318-1330 or (406) 444-3111
fax (406) 444-5529
governor@mt.gov

INFORMATION / TALKING POINTS

  • HB 194 is an act requiring a forage (range) analysis before wild buffalo (or bison) are released, transplanted, or migrate naturally, onto land in Montana.
  • HB 194 is another unfunded mandate required to be performed before transplanting or reintroducing buffalo as a wildlife species in Montana.
  • HB 194 provides no funding for a required forage analysis by a range scientist from MSU-Ag or US NRCS.
  • HB 194 uses agricultural theories based on livestock grazing principles rather than professional ecological analysis by wildlife and wildlands professionals.
Photo by  Jim Robertson

Photo by Jim Robertson

Wolf harvest down slightly from last year

http://www.greatfallstribune.com/story/outdoors/hunting/2015/03/17/wolf-harvest-slightly-last-year/24928657/

Montana hunters and trappers killed 207 wolves during the 2014-15 season, which came to a close Sunday.

That was 23 fewer wolves than the 230 killed in the 2013-14 season.

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks wasn’t surprised by those numbers. That’s well within normal season-to-season hunting fluctuations, said John Vore, game management bureau chief with FWP.

A number of factors could contribute to that decrease.

copyrighted wolf in riverWe suspect the wolf population is down a little bit,” Vore said.

The weather was also very different between the two seasons, said Ron Aasheim, FWP spokesman.

Wolf hunters also may not have been as motivated after a few seasons of wolf hunting, he said. Hunters who were really interested and committed to getting a wolf when wolf hunting first became legal may have already harvested a wolf last year or the year before and may not have worked as hard this year.

FWP issued 20,383 wolf licenses this season, compared to 24,479 last season.

Along the Rocky Mountain Front, hunters took 11 wolves and trappers took eight. Last year, 12 wolves were taken in Region 4.

No wolves were killed this year in the Highwoods or Little Belts, said Ty Smucker, wolf management specialist in Region 4.

FWP is preparing is wolf population report. That should be out in the next couple weeks, Aasheim said.

A history of wolf hunts in Montana

2009: During Montana’s first regulated wolf hunt, hunters harvested 72 wolves during the fall hunting season. As hunters approached the overall harvest quota of 75 wolves, FWP closed the hunt about two weeks before the season was scheduled to end.

2010: The hunting season was blocked by a federal court ruling in August 2010 that returned wolves to the federal endangered species list. In April 2011, the U.S. Congress enacted a new federal law delisting wolves in Montana and Idaho, and in portions of Washington, Oregon and Utah.

2011-12: The wolf hunting season ended with a total harvest of 166 wolves, 75 percent of the overall quota of 220 wolves. The season was initially set to end Dec. 31, but was extended to Feb. 15.

2012-13: This was the first time wolf trapping was allowed in the state. There was no statewide quota. Hunters took 128 wolves and trappers took 97 wolves for a total of 225.

2013-14: Montana’s wolf hunting season was extended and the bag limit was increased to five wolves. Hunters killed 143 wolves and trappers took 87 wolves, for a total of 230 wolves.

2014-15: Hunters killed a 130 wolves and trappers killed another 77 for a total of 207 animals.

Could Fewer Wolf Kills Mean Fewer Wolves?

Trappers in Montana have killed 77 gray wolves and hunters have shot 127 so far this winter — a total of 204 animals — as the season for the animals nears its end.copyrighted wolf in river

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks spokesman Ron Aasheim said the final tally for this winter’s wolf harvest is expected to fall short of the 230 wolves killed in the 2013-2014 season.

The trapping season closed Feb. 28, and Montana’s rifle hunting season for gray wolves ends March 15.

Six of the predators have been killed by landowners, under a new state law that allows wolves to be killed if they are considered a potential threat to livestock or human safety.

In neighboring, Idaho hunters have shot 113 of the animals so far this winter and trappers have killed 92.

The state’s total harvest of 205 wolves is well short of the prior year’s total of 302 animals killed.

Idaho’s wolf season ends March 31 for most of the state but continues year-round in some areas.

Wyoming did not have a wolf hunting season this winter. After losing their federal protections across the Northern Rockies in 2011 and 2012, wolves were put back on the endangered species list in Wyoming in September under a court order.

U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson sided with wildlife advocates who said Wyoming’s declaration of wolves as unprotected predators that could be shot on sight in most of the state afforded insufficient protection.

Legislation pending before Congress would nullify the judge’s decision.

There were 1,691 wolves in the Northern Rockies at the end of 2013, the most recent data available.

http://trib.com/news/state-and-regional/winter-wolf-harvests-trailing-in-northern-rockies-most-hunting-trapping/article_d585057d-f9b6-50f1-b661-e5e4f6be8006.html

Stop Yellowstone National Park’s Bison Slaughter!

PLEASE SIGN AND SHARE!

Stop Yellowstone National Park’s Bison Slaughter! Sign Our One Click Letter No Matter Where You Live! In February 2014, we asked you to oppose the slaughter of bison in America’s oldest national park and you responded by the thousands. We need you to speak up again, because Yellowstone National Park is continuing to kill these majestic and wild animals. Since January 15, approximately 250 bison have been captured inside the park and all, with the exception of five, tragically transported to slaughterhouses. In addition, Montana hunters and treaty hunters have killed at least 150 bison along the park’s borders, raising the death toll to 400 individuals.  The Montana livestock industry wants America’s last wild bison dead. The Montana Livestock Industry has zero tolerance and no respect for wild animals such as bison. These bison are being rounded up and shipped to slaughter to appease livestock ranchers in Montana who unfairly compete with bison for grazing space.  In 1995, the Montana legislature adopted MCA 81-2-120 in response to political pressure by cattle ranchers to stop wild bison from migrating from Yellowstone National Park into Montana. MCA 81-2-120 gives the Montana Department of Livestock complete jurisdiction over migratory bison, which means that bison can be physically removed, hazed, rounded-up, killed by hunters, and sent to slaughter at the will and order of the Montana livestock industry. Click here to take action: https://secure2.convio.net/ida/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=2709 See this alert on our website here: http://www.idausa.org/stop-yellowstone-national-parks-bison-slaughter/
(Bison Photo copyright Jim Robertson)

Stop Yellowstone National Park’s Bison Slaughter!

Sign Our One Click Letter No Matter Where You Live!

In February 2014, we asked you to oppose the slaughter of bison in America’s oldest national park and you responded by the thousands. We need you to speak up again, because Yellowstone National Park is continuing to kill these majestic and wild animals. Since January 15, approximately 250 bison have been captured inside the park and all, with the exception of five, tragically transported to slaughterhouses. In addition, Montana hunters and treaty hunters have killed at least 150 bison along the park’s borders, raising the death toll to 400 individuals.

The Montana livestock industry wants America’s last wild bison dead.
The Montana Livestock Industry has zero tolerance and no respect for wild animals such as bison. These bison are being rounded up and shipped to slaughter to appease livestock ranchers in Montana who unfairly compete with bison for grazing space.

In 1995, the Montana legislature adopted MCA 81-2-120 in response to political pressure by cattle ranchers to stop wild bison from migrating from Yellowstone National Park into Montana. MCA 81-2-120 gives the Montana Department of Livestock complete jurisdiction over migratory bison, which means that bison can be physically removed, hazed, rounded-up, killed by hunters, and sent to slaughter at the will and order of the Montana livestock industry.

Click here to take action:

https://secure2.convio.net/ida/site/Advocacy…

See this alert on our website here:

http://www.idausa.org/stop-yellowstone-national-parks-biso…/

Another New Contest Hunt?

First the bad news–New Coyote Derby in announced in Montana

MT contest hunt

Then the terrific News! Bill to Ban Coyote Killing Contests in New Mexico Passes First Hurdle Today!

Today SB 253, a bill sponsored by New Mexico Senator Mark Moores and Representative Jeff Steinborn to ban coyote killing contests passed out of committee with a vote of 6-3.

This contest-hunt ban effort is work that WildEarth Guardians is doing with coalition partners Animal Protection Voters, @Southwest Environmental Center, and others who are committed to improving treatment of wildlife in New Mexico through changes in state legislation.

200+ Yellowstone Bison Sent to Slaghter

Photo Copyright Jim Robertson

Photo Copyright Jim Robertson

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/at-least-200-yellowstone-bison-have-been-sent-to-slaughter-conservation-group/ar-AA8wPh0

Yellowstone National Park has shipped at least 200 bison near the park boundary with Montana to slaughter as the famed tourist destination seeks to reduce a herd by 900 animals this winter, a U.S. conservation group said on Friday.

A park spokesman, Al Nash, could not immediately confirm how many bison may have been handed over to tribal partners and taken to slaughter. But he said 162 bison had been captured and placed into a holding facility as of a week ago.

The Buffalo Field Campaign, which opposes the culling and has been monitoring it, said the bison had been dispatched to slaughter since Wednesday, and anticipated that 55 more could be sent on Monday.

The culling plan allows the bulk of bison marked for death to be transferred to Native American tribes for slaughter and a certain number of the wandering buffalo to be killed by hunters.

The strategy is designed to address worries by ranchers that bison infected with the bacterial disease brucellosis, which can cause miscarriages in cattle, could transmit it to their herds, potentially threatening Montana’s brucellosis-free status.

The plan this winter to reduce the bison population to 4,000 from 4,900 comes as conservation groups are seeking federal protections for a herd that is a top attraction for the 3 million annual visitors to a park that spans parts of Wyoming, Montana and Idaho.

Buffalo Field Campaign spokeswoman Stephany Seay called the culling practice “the brutal abuse and slaughter of the only wild population of buffalo remaining in this country.”

The iconic hump-backed animals once roamed by the tens of millions west of the Mississippi until hunting campaigns reduced their numbers to the fewer than 50 that found safe harbor at Yellowstone in the early 20th century.

The Buffalo Field Campaign said that roughly another 100 bison have been killed by hunters outside the park in Montana, while Nash, citing state officials, put that number lower, at 70.

Nash said the park usually engages in culling in winter, when bison migrate to lower elevations in search of food. Federal and state officials on horseback have been capturing animals along the park boundary, both inside and outside the park.

Conservationists petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service last year to provide federal safeguards for the Yellowstone herd, contending it was the only free-roaming band in the country to retain its genetic integrity.

(Reporting by Eric M. Johnson in Seattle; Editing by Sandra Maler)

It’s All a Game: New Tags Allow Wolf-Pelt Transport To Canada

USFWS Helps to Market Wolf Pelts: ‏

http://fwp.mt.gov/news/newsReleases/fishAndWildlife/nr_0722.html

Fish & Wildlife

Wed Jan 21 10:57:00 MST 2015

With the recent approval from the U. S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Montana wolf hunters and trappers who harvest wolves will now obtain internationally recognized pelt tags to allow for the export of wolf pelts directly out of country, usually to Canadian fur auction houses.

Montana’s CITES wolf-pelt tags were obtained under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, an international agreement between governments. Its aim is to ensure that international trade in specimens of CITES-listed wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.

“This is a big change from the past couple of years in terms of hunter and trapper harvest opportunity to sell wolf pelts,” said Brian Giddings, statewide furbearer coordinator for Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks in Helena.

Any hunter or trapper who harvests a wolf taken during the 2014-2015 season—Sept. 6, 2014 through Feb. 28, 2015—can now have it tagged with a CITES pelt tag.

As a condition of CITES approval, however, no prior season harvested wolf can receive a CITES tag, Giddings said.

Additionally, Montana’s wolf CITES tags cannot be used for any other method of mortality such as road-killed, federal Wildlife Services’ control action, landowner/livestock control, or incidental take. Nor can CITES tags be used for wolves taken on Tribal lands.

Hunters and trappers have strict reporting requirements. Upon the harvest of a wolf, hunters and trappers must call 1-877-FWP-WILD—1-877-397-9453—within 24 hours to file a report. Wolf pelts must be tagged within 10 days of harvest.

State tags issued earlier this hunting and trapping season can be replaced with the new wolf CITES tags by contacting the nearest FWP regional office. Once one receives a wolf CITES tag the old state-issued wolf tag can be removed and discarded.

For more information on CITES wolf-pelt tags contact your nearest FWP office.

To learn more about Montana’s wolf hunting season, visit FWP online atfwp.mt.gov. Click “Hunting Guides” and choose Wolf.

Featured Image -- 7624

More Coyote Killing

Coyote hunt begins Wednesday

Published: Monday, January 19, 2015 12:49 PM MST

Central Montana’s Coyote Hunt is slated to begin on Jan. 21.  The contest was initiated, when hunters saw more coyotes in the field than deer and antelope during hunting season.  The hunt has been successful in the eyes of many ranchers who have commented on previous years’ hunts. For hunters in the field this year, many noticed the coyotes seemed to be running in packs even sooner, and for many in the field it seemed as if a dent had not even been made in  the population of predators.

The cost of being on the poster and helping to fund the contest is $100. All money raised goes to the hunters who bring in their entries. The contest will be run the same as last year with the drop offs at Don’s Store and the Sport Center in Lewistown.

During last year’s contest there were hunters entering coyotes from all over Central Montana’s trade area including Harlowton, Ryegate, Jordan, Winnett, Grass Range, Big Sandy, Winifred, Geraldine, Denton, Stanford, Geyser, Hobson, Moccasin, Utica, Moore, Judith Gap and Lewistown.

No hunter or trapper is able to enter more than 50 in the contest. Each entry is given a ticket and at the end of the hunt on April 1 tickets are drawn for the prize money. Holding the drawing in this manner lets the hunter who enters once have as good a chance at the prize money as the rest of the hunters, except a hunter who shoots more coyotes gets more entries into the contest.

Sponsors this year are PJG Motorsports, Custom Cut Meats, Fleet Supply, Judith MTN Meats, Utica Rod and Gun Club, Lewistown Plumbing and Repair, Doc’s OK Corral, Yogo Inn, Lewistown Taxidermy, Big Dry Saddlery, Ace Hardware, Hilger Meats, Advanced Electric, Lewistown Propane, Lewistown Honda-Polaris-Kawasaki, Sport Center and Don’s Store. To be listed or be anonymous as a sponsor contact Dale or Charlie Pfau at Don’s Store 538-9408 or John Tognetti  at the Sport Center 535-9308.
Slaughter the Earth...

Some MT Wolf Hunt/Trap Stats

copyrighted wolf in river

MT: Lincoln County bagging fair share of wolves

 Justin Steck
The Western News

Ninety-six wolves have been taken, with eight harvested by trapping, during Montana’s wolf hunting and trapping season.

In region one, which encompasses Lincoln County, 30 wolves have been taken by hunting and two have been trapped. Those numbers were from John Fraley at Montana Fish Wildlife & Parks office in Kalispell.

Montana wolf trapping season got underway on Dec. 15 and will run until Feb 28. Archery season for wolves ran from Sept. 6-14, and general rifle season began Sept.15 and continues until Mar. 15.

Local taxidermist Gerry Mercer said trapping season starts to take-off when the snow falls and it starts to get cold, which should be soon. Last year he had a dozen wolves come through his shop.

According to 2013 numbers from Montana Fish Wildlife & Parks, the total number of wolves taken during the season was 230, 143 were hunted and 87 trapped.

Wolf Management Units 100 and 101, which include Lincoln County and a portion of Flathead County, were the areas with the highest numbers of harvested wolves in the state. The number of wolves taken in those two areas was 28 in 100 and 38 in 101.

Last year 24,479 wolf licenses were issued, 22,169 of those were to Montana residents.

Senate Bill 200 is a new bill that allows for landowners in Wolf Management Units 200, 400, 310 and 390 to take up to 100 wolves total that may potentially be a threat to humans, livestock or dogs. The quota will be examined in four 25-wolf increments throughout the year, with increases needing to be approved by Fish Wildlife & Parks.

The first fair chase wolf hunting season in Montana was 2009. Before then, no rules existed to regulate the number or means by which wolves could be taken. That year 60 wolves were taken during the season lasting from Oct. 25 to Nov. 15.

In 2011, the number of wolves harvested rose to 166. The total number of wolves killed during the 2012 season fell to 128.

Court challenges barred the 2010 wolf hunting season.

Source

Some Sad News: Missing wolf hunters found safe

spent 2 nights stuck in snow.

528624c939a88_preview-620

BUTTE – A father and son who were hunting wolves and hadn’t been seen since Saturday morning have been found safe, according to the Beaverhead County Sheriff’s office.

Scott, 56, and Conrad, 33, McDougal were located in a southwest portion of Beaverhead County, approximately 40 miles from Dell Montana. The father and son got stuck in deep snow and spent two nights with their vehicle. Both are in reasonably good condition.

Early Sunday afternoon, Beaverhead Search and Rescue was called to help find the pair. The hunters did not provide relatives information concerning their hunt. Searchers could only identify a starting point based upon the hunters usual activity.

Search members used four-wheel drive trucks and all-terrain vehicles to comb the area outside of Dell, in the area of Sage Creek, until 10 p.m. Sunday.

A helicopter from Lifeflight in Butte assisted as well. Weather was problematic, sheriff Jay Hansen said.

On Monday, 16 searchers planned to work with fixed-wing aircraft and searchers using trucks and ATV’s…

More: http://missoulian.com/news/local/missing-wolf-hunters-found-safe-spent-nights-stuck-in-snow/article_05fa76d0-1196-5949-a29c-1237acad6fad.html