Meet the Advocates: Inside the Heart of Wolf Advocacy—The Yellowstone Story Film Project

This documentary tells the story of advocates working to preserve the legacy of Yellowstone National Park wolves that face an uncertain future because of legal wolf hunts just beyond the park’s border. A famous wolf, known as 06, was killed in a legal wolf hunt when she left the park’s sanctuary in 2012. Six years later 06’s daughter, known as Spitfire, wolf 926F suffered the same fate in November 2018. Today, Wolves in Yellowstone have become the “rock stars” of their species due to the hundreds of thousands of people that venture into the park hoping for a glimpse of a Yellowstone wolf. The death of 06 and other collared wolves has ignited a battle to create a buffer zone around Yellowstone National Park to protect it’s wolves because legal trophy hunts take place in Wyoming, Idaho & Montana. The film is set in our nation’s first national park, Yellowstone National Park is a nearly 3,500-sq.-mile wilderness recreation area atop a volcanic hot spot. By 1926, as a result of federal and state predator control efforts, gray wolves (Canis lupus) were officially extirpated from Yellowstone National Park. Northern Rocky Mountain wolves were eventually listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in 1973.

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Our film is in production. Watch the following teaser “Meet the Advocates”

With ESA listing came the goal of restoring wolves to their historic range, and in 1995 and 1996, following many years of public planning and input, a total of 31 wolves, captured in Alberta and British Columbia, Canada, were reintroduced to Yellowstone. Wolves flourished amidst Yellowstone’s abundant prey and expansive, protected wilderness.

The first wolf arrives in Yellowstone at the Crystal Bench Pen (Mike Phillips-YNP Wolf Project Leader, Jim Evanoff-YNP, Molly Beattie- USFWS Director, Mike Finley-YNP Superintendent, Bruce Babbitt-Secretary of Interior) JIM PEACO (CC-BY-2.0)

The Montana and Wyoming Legislature dismissed the idea of a buffer zone for wolves that wander outside Yellowstone, instead instating a law prohibiting such buffer zones. The film takes viewers through the controversy surrounding Yellowstone National Park wolves being legally hunted in Wyoming, Montana & Idaho when they wander from the sanctuary of park. The film takes you into the advocates lives, why they advocate, the work they do, and how the advocate’s work will preserve the legacy of Yellowstone Park wolves.

MEET THE ADVOCATES

Advocate Dr. Nathan Varley, Ph.D. in Ecology from the Department of Biological Sciences of the University of Alberta. His research focused on the relationship between wolves and elk after wolf reintroduction. Dr. Varley, a businessman co-owner of Yellowstone Wolf Tracker tours in Gardiner, Montana, has taken scores of hopeful wolf-watchers to see the Lamar Canyon pack, and says that the majority of his company’s $500,000 gross income comes from tourists like these “I estimate that a half-million people saw 754,” he said. “It was one of the million dollar wolves that was taken out of the population.” Quoted from NYT article: Research Animals Lost in Wolf Hunts Near Yellowstone by Nate Schweber 11/28/2012

Advocate Linda Thurston, Co Owner of Yellowstone Wolf Tracker tours in Gardiner, Montana. Thurston began working on the Yellowstone Wolf Project in 1996, during the early years of the wolf reintroduction. She headed up the first denning behavior study on wolves in Yellowstone Park, and received her master’s degree in wildlife biology from Texas A&M while doing so. Thurston and Dr. Varley through their business focus on teaching people about the behavior, ecology and management of wolves in and around Yellowstone Park for the past 14 years. Both Thurston and Dr. Varley are active in wolf conservation issues through Bear Creek Council, a grassroots organization that works to protect wolves and other wildlife just outside the boundary of Yellowstone Park.

Advocate Mark Cooke

Advocate Marc Cooke is founder of Wolves of the Rockies (WOTR) who’s mission is; to Protect & Defend Wolves of the Rocky Mountains through advocating and education. WOTR gathers wolf advocates from around the world to consolidate our voices into a force that will influence the protection and acceptance of wolves in the Rocky Mountain Region. Educating people with facts about wolves, and wolf behavior to counter the negative image created by commercial interest groups, fictional entertainment and extremism.

Advocate Ilona Popper

Advocate Ilona Popper has a M.A. English Language and Literature, University of Virginia and has worked for 40 years as an editor, writing coach, and teacher. Ilona has worked intensively on preserving wolves in the YNP area and in Montana. She helped establish and served as chair for the Bear Creek Council Wolf Committee and was invited to sit on Finding Common Ground, a council called by Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks to bring together wildlife advocates and environmentalists with sportspeople and livestock producers. The participants were often at odds, especially about wolves, but she saw that “each person shared a love of wildlife and nature.”

The film will also introduce the viewer to Yellowstone Wolf Project staff. Douglas W. Smith, senior wildlife biologist for Yellowstone Wolf Project. Kira Cassidy, Kira holds her M.S. degree from the University of Minnesota, with projects focusing on territoriality and aggression between packs of gray wolves. Now working as a Research Associate for the Yellowstone Wolf Project. Rick McIntyre has served as a seasonal park ranger at such sites as Yellowstone, Denali, Glacier, and Big Bend national parks. His books include War Against the Wolf: America’s Campaign to Exterminate the Wolf (Voyageur Press) and Grizzly Cub: Five Years in the Life of a Bear.

Watch a Yellowstone National Park video of Kira Cassidy watching the alpha female wolf 926F as she chases an elk click the link: https://youtu.be/n_LkLFt3uYc


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Poster design by Any Reich

Producers Maaike Middleton and Rachel Tilseth

Director Rachel Tilseth

A Wolves of Douglas County Wisconsin Film

Visit Inside the Heart of Wolf Advocacy: The Yellowstone Story’s Facebook Page Here for all Updates

Inside of the Heart of Wolf Advocacy: The Yellowstone Story

Producer

Maaike Middleton is a wildlife filmmaker. She was born in The Netherlands and grew up in Montana. She has traveled the globe filming wildlife from pumas in Patagonia, the illusive Amur tiger in the Russian Far East and grizzlies in her backyard. Maaike is passionate about telling stories that can make a difference and address issues that impact us all. When she is not setting camera traps to capture animal behavior she is watching films and helping with the selection process for the Wildlife Film Festival Rotterdam. She received her MA from University of London- Royal Holloway BA Montana State University- Bozeman. She has worked on projects for Smithsonian, Nat Geo, Curiosity Stream, BBC Nature, PBS and ARTE.

Producer and Director

Rachel Tilseth is a freelance writer, fine artist, filmmaker and environmentalist. Tilseth has been a Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Volunteer Winter Wolf Tracker since the year 2000. Tilseth worked with the Wisconsin Wolf Recovery Program as a volunteer since 1998, and as a result learned about the lives of wild gray wolves. Tilseth worked to draw attention to the plight of Gray wolves during the three years Wisconsin held wolf hunts. As an environmentalist Tilseth has organized events, film screenings and a film festival. Tilseth is the Producer and Director of Inside the Heart of Wolf Advocacy: The Yellowstone Story currently in production. Rachel Tilseth received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Art Education in 1992 from UW-Stout, graduating with cum laude honors.

The Trailer

Wolves of Douglas County Wisconsin Presents

A Film Produced by Maaike Middleton Rachel Tilseth

Song “Don’t Know Why, But They Do”

Words & Music by Joe De Benedetti Noah Hill

Edited by Maaike Middleton

Cinematography by Maaike Middleton

Directed by Rachel Tilseth

B Roll National Park Service

Graphic Design Andy Reich

Advocates Ilona Popper

Nathan Varley

Linda Thurston

Marc Cooke

Wolves of Douglas County WI Films LLC

Click here to donate to this film project

Inside the Heart of Wolf Advocacy—The Yellowstone Story Advocates Linda Thurston & Nathan Varley business owners at http://www.wolftracker.com We advocate emphatically for the wildlife upon which our business depends. Unlike a lot of businesses in our industry that stay quiet and sit on their hands, we show up to speak out on controversial wildlife issues. We are not afraid to stick up for wolves, bison, and bears when they need a voice. As leaders in Bear Creek Council, an all-volunteer, local grassroots group, we dedicate our effort to wise stewardship in our area. We fight mine proposals that threaten Yellowstone’s habitat and water quality. We fight trophy hunters that want to shoot wolves and grizzly bears along park borders. We fight for the next generation and their right to experience the same wild Yellowstone we know and love.

Is Wisconsin Ready to Pay the High Price for Hound Hunting?

Wolves of Douglas County Wisconsin Films

When wolves were taken off the Endangered Species list in the Great Lakes area in 2012 Wisconsin rushed to legislatively mandate a wolf hunt. Not only did the state mandate a hunt on wolves, they became the only state to allow the hunting of wolves with the aide of dogs-wolf hounding. Wolves were hunted by this brutal method for two seasons of WI’s wolf hunt 2013-2014. Even allowing wolf hound hunters to run dogs on wolves for training without any permanent rules, Judge Rules That Dogs Can Chase Wolves As Training For Hunt

As of December 19, 2014 a federal judged ordered wolves in the Great Lakes back on the Endangered Species List (ESA). And every day since being returned to federal protection, wolves have been under attack by anti wolf legislation.If and when this happens remember that the state of Wisconsin isOut of all the states that hunt…

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A broken system: Small family farms & Gray wolves are paying the price.

Producers are going broke yet the Federal Government keeps propping them up for more failures. The federal government paid more than $15.7 billion to agriculture and dairy subsidy applicants across the country to aid struggling producers in 2018. During the Great Depression farm subsidies were created to help keep farmers afloat and insure our nations food supply. (Source: Forbes August 2018). It was meant to help the family farmers survive the Great Depression. But today these farm subsidies are have become a lucrative business for corporations.

Top 10 U.S. farm subsidy recipients from 2008 through 2017 benefiting from 60 federal farm programs administered by the USDA. These government programs include marketing assistance, agricultural risk, price loss coverage, livestock forage, conservation, crop disaster and many more. OPENTHEBOOKS.COM (Forbes Article August 2018)

Meanwhile in Wisconsin family farms are going under by the dozens. Wisconsin lost almost 700 dairy farms in 2018, an unprecedented rate of nearly two a day. Most were small operations unable to survive farm milk prices that, adjusted for inflation, were among the lowest in a half-century. (Source: JSonlne 2018).

I think the Federal Government is using Wisconsin’s Gray wolf as the perfect deterrent to discourage anyone from looking at the real problem.

Wisconsin farmers struggle when it comes to protecting their livestock from wolf attacks,” WFBF President Jim Holte said. “It is illegal for Wisconsin farmers to protect their livestock in the case of a wolf attack and there is no mechanism in place to control the population.” (Source: Wisconsin Farm Bureau 2019).

Producers are going broke yet the Federal Government keeps propping them up for more failures. Instead of fixing the problem corrupt politicians use the gray wolf as the perfect deterrent. We are delving deep into this story…

More to come:

Why is the Federal Government throwing more tax dollars into a broken system? Gray wolves & family farms are paying the price.

Killing Games: Wildlife in the Crosshairs Minnesota Premiere!

The days of industrial scale hunting might seem like something from a bygone era. Surely, we’ve evolved as a nation? Think again. Odds are there’s an event planned this weekend in a town near you where wildlife will be slaughtered en masse.

Across the country, barbaric contests aptly called “killing contest” are pegged as family fun where even Jr. can nab a defenseless critter for the chance to win a prize, more often than not a trophy or ribbon not unlike one you’d get at a county fair.

At these events, participants point, aim, and fire at anything that moves to rack up the most, the heaviest, the smallest: the superlatives are as endless as they are cruel. What’s worse is this isn’t the subsistence hunting or fair chase associated with ethical sportsmen. It’s killing for no other reason than slaughter.

One of the leaders in the effort to stop this unethical treatment of native wildlife is Camilla Fox, founder and executive director of Project Coyote, a predator education non-profit that seeks to teach the general public about coexistence strategies for both predators and people.

For the past 10 years Camilla and her cohorts at Project Coyote have fought for the rights of native species to live in peace alongside us. And in doing so, a nascent movement to get states to ban wildlife killing contests has gained traction. Allies include a diverse mix of ranchers, scientists, conservationists, and everyday citizens who care about wildlife.

Through various programs that include community education, partnerships with farmers, and wildlife advocacy in the halls of government, Project Coyote has helped turn the tide against the unabated exploitation of wildlife. But it’s not easy.

“The view that wildlife is here for our exploitation, for our recreational and commercial use is at the base of practices like killing contests,” Fox tells me over the phone. “And until we change that fundamental perspective of viewing wild animals as something that we can kill in unlimited numbers for fun and prizes, we won’t really be getting at the base core problem…”

Attacking that problem will require a mix of tactics, ranging from advocacy to legal action, all of which Fox is poised to use in an effort to bring awareness to how we as a country mismanage wildlife. One of her most recent projects includes the production of an award winning documentary style film called Killing Games, Wildlife in the Crosshairs.

The film is shot through the lens of those most affected by predator contests – coyotes. While they are the focus, however, the film employs a host of narratives from stakeholders, like ranchers Becky Weed and Keli Hendricks, who want to see an end to killing contests.

With reason and raw emotion, storytellers give voice to the voiceless through science-based data and personal anecdotes. The result is a film that offers a compelling mix of stories that both pull at your heart strings and offers an alternative way to view and live with predators.

“I look at killing contests as an exercise in cruelty”, says Michael Soule, a Project Coyote science advisory board member, in the film. “Why would you want to kill creatures just for the fun of it? We’re talking about mammals, animals that have a pretty high level of consciousness. They’re aware of what’s happening to them and that means they suffer.”

The victims are often some of our countries most important species – coyotes, foxes, bobcats, mountain lions, and sometimes even wolves.

Proponents will tell you that they’re managing pests, helping ungulate populations, and reducing conflicts with wildlife. But all of these reasons have been debunked by peer reviewed studies. And some studies show that indiscriminately killing coyotes can actually have the opposite effect.

But research and organizations like the Human Society of the United States say otherwise.

“Research suggests that when aggressively controlled, coyotes can increase their reproductive rate by breeding at an earlier age and having larger litters, with a higher survival rate among the young,” reports the HSUS website. “This allows coyote populations to quickly bounce back, even when as much as 70 percent of their numbers are removed.”

So in effect, wildlife killing contests may actually create more problems than they purport to solve. In addition, by killing predators, the participants are destroying ecosystems that predate our existence and time on this continent.

While wildlife killing contests have been happening in the shadows of America since the late 50’s, the advent of social media has brought them and their participants into the wider public view. And many aren’t pleased by what they see.

“There’s no justification for this other than … the cheap exploitation of human power and weaponry over defenseless animals”, says Project Coyote advisory board member Peter Coyote in Killing Games. “That’s not sport. That’s just massacre.”

By highlighting ethical ways to manage and live with wildlife, the film shows how our current system is woefully lacking. Scenes are replete with beautiful stories from ranchers and scientists who work with community members to reshape the narrative around predator management. Their focus is on one that includes a host of non-lethal techniques like using guard dogs, fladry, and range riders to deter predation.

As the film also wonderfully captures how key native predators are to the ecosystems in which they inhabit. They keep environments healthy by managing rodent populations and keeping grazers in check.

“All of these carnivores, … they all have their particular niches to maintain the health of ecosystems,” says veterinarian, bioethicist, and author Michael W. Fox (also Camilla’s father). “When they are disrupted, when they are exterminated, ecosystems change.”

This change often has a decremental impact on other species and the environment overall and some states have taken notice. Project Coyote scored a big win in 2014 when California, their home state, prohibited the awarding of prizes or other inducements for the killing of non-game and furbearing animals as part of a contest, derby or tournament. This ban covers not just coyotes, but also bobcats, foxes and raccoons who are often targeted in killing contests.

Since then, the momentum has only increased. Last year Vermont banned coyote killing contests. New Mexico followed up this year by doing the same. And most recently Arizona Game and Fish passed a rule that would ban killing contests as well.

The goal of the film is to call attention to the shadowy business of killing contests while building on the success of bans at the state level. But the ultimate goal is to inspire grassroots action to ban this bloodsport nationwide.

And this is where you come in. If you want to get involved, Fox offers a number of suggestions to voice your concerns. One of the lowest hanging fruits is commenting in the comments section online. If you’re really looking to speak up, write letters to the editors of the major news outlets in your area to express your opposition. And for those that are ready to role their sleeves up, you can write letters to your state legislature, governor’s office, and state fish and game commission encouraging a ban of wildlife killing contests.

More than exposing wildlife killing contests for their cruelty and pointlessness, the film offers a chance for you to learn about what’s happening in your backyard.

If you’re in the Great Lakes area this week, come check out the Minnesota premier of Killing Games this Wednesday, July 24th at 7pm at the Landmark Edina Cinema, in Edina, Minnesota, just outside Minneapolis. The screening will be hosted by Rachel Tilseth, herself, and is a part of the Wild and Scenic Film Festival. Purchase tickets here .

Additionally, Camilla and colleagues from the National Coalition to End Wildlife Killing Contests will be part of a post panel discussion to answer questions, hear your thoughts, and talk to you directly about wildlife killing contests and how to stop them.

To learn more about Project Coyote and the film, please visit http://www.projectcoyote.org/

Opinion: A once-proud conservation group has lost its way

By Dave Stalling August 31, 2012 Opinion: High Country News

Recently, (2012) the family of Olaus J. Murie demanded that the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation cancel the organization’s Olaus J. Murie Award. The surprising reason? The foundation’s “all-out war against wolves is anathema to the entire Murie family.”

Wolf chasing elk, Yellowstone National Park. Before the reintroduction of wolves into Yellowstone there was an over population of elk. Wolves have now reduced the numbers greatly. Copyright Daryl L Hunter Wolf chase, the story http://daryl-hunter.net/wolf-chase

I sympathize with the family’s position for several reasons. In 1999, while working for the Elk Foundation, I created the Olaus J. Murie Award, with the coordination and the approval of the Murie family. The award recognized scientists working on behalf of elk and elk habitat and was given in the name of Olaus J. Murie because he is widely considered the “father” of modern elk research.

Murie, who did groundbreaking work at the National Elk Refuge in Jackson Hole, Wyo., in the 1940s, also wrote Elk of North America, the first comprehensive and scientific treatise on elk and elk management.

During most of its 28-history, the Elk Foundation and its more than 185,000 members, who are primarily hunters, avoided controversy. Instead, the group focused on its mission: “To ensure the future of elk, other wildlife and their habitat.” Most of the foundation’s leaders had solid backgrounds in wildlife biology, ecology and wildlife management, and they resisted the occasional pressure from hunters to get involved in issues such as gun rights or wolf reintroduction.

“We are not a hunting organization supporting conservation; we are a conservation organization supported by hunters,” former foundation director Gary Wolfe used to say.

But starting in 2000, the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation’s board of directors changed, many staff members were fired, and the nonprofit group went through a string of short-term directors. Then in 2007, the foundation board hired David Allen, a former marketer for NASCAR and the Pro Rodeo Cowboys Association, as its director. At first, it seemed that Allen would follow a path similar to former leaders.

“We are not a hunting club. We don’t intend to be a hunting club. We are a membership organization that has an overwhelming number of hunters … but we’re not doing wildlife conservation to improve our hunting,” Allen said when he took on the job. That approach did not last long.

“Wolf reintroduction is the worst ecological disaster since the decimation of bison herds,” Allen said recently, as he claimed that wolves are “decimating” and “annihilating” elk herds. “To keep wolf populations controlled, states will have to hold hunts, shoot wolves from the air and gas their dens,” he said.

When asked about the utility of predator-prey relationships, Allen explained, “Natural balance is a Walt Disney movie. It isn’t real.” Under his leadership, the Elk Foundation recently offered the state of Montana $50,000 to contract with the federal Wildlife Services agency to “aggressively” kill more wolves. “And the next step is the grizzly bear,” he said. “We’ve got bear issues with elk calves in the spring — both grizzly and black bear. We can’t have all these predators with little aggressive management and expect to have ample game herds, and sell hunting tags and generate revenue.”

This approach has not gone over well with some conservationists. Ralph Maughan, director of the Western Watersheds Project and the Wolf Recovery Foundation, said that foundation director “Allen has not only taken a strongly anti-wolf position, but he has done it taking an ‘in your face’ way to traditional conservation organizations such as those supported by Olaus Murie, which he now calls ‘extremist.’” “Allen has also expressed contempt for many of the concepts of ecology, as he seems to be moving the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation toward a single species, single value of elk (hunting) approach.”

There has been a lot of good, solid research on elk and wolf interactions, some of it funded by the Elk Foundation in years past. Most of it that shows that when wolves are restored to an ecosystem, both habitat and elk herds improve. Allen’s claims are not backed by science.

“Mr. Allen and his anti-wolf rhetoric has alienated him and his organization from many of the very organizations that have helped the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation — in subtle and profound ways — garner the successes it has over the years,” said Bob Ferris, a 30-year wildlife researcher who was involved in bringing wolves back to the Yellowstone ecosystem.

The family of Olaus J. Murie, the “father” of modern elk research and management, agrees with these criticisms. A foundation that once understood the complex relationship between elk and wolves has succumbed to the pressures of hunters who don’t like wolves.

Dave Stalling is a contributor to Writers on the Range, a service of High Country News (hcn.org). He is an elk hunter, fisherman and wildlife conservationist and lives in Missoula, Montana. High Country News

Meet the Advocates Inside the Heart of Wolf Advocacy: The Yellowstone Story currently in production by Wolves of Douglas County Wisconsin Films. Click here to donate to this film project

Watch the Teaser


Sen. Udall and Rep. Beyer Revive Wildlife Corridors Bill to Make Movement Easier and Safer for Wildlife

There are over 4 million miles of highways, roads, and other transportation arteries throughout the US and many of them cut through the heart of vital habitat for endangered and threatened species. While key to our mobility, they are often designed without consideration for wildlife movement.

The impacts of these paved paths can be devastating for wildlife. On a basic level, isolated islands of biodiversity are formed that fragment wildlife populations, divide habitats, and degrade ecosystems. At its extreme, human development cuts off entire migration routes and blocks any chance of adapting to changing ecosystems.

Earlier this month, Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and U.S. Rep. Don Beyer (D-VA) introduced a bill that would make movement safer and easier for wildlife. The impetus for the bill was the recent UN report that found at least 1 million species are in danger of extinction due to accelerated human activity.

The Wildlife Corridors Conservation Act of 2019, as it’s known, would help stem the tide of declining species and habitats by connecting ecosystems with over crosses, underpasses, and culverts. They would create a system of corridors that connect and extend habitats so that animals can move over large areas, whether it be for daily foraging, seasonal migration, or finding a mate.

“Widespread habitat destruction is leaving scores of animal and plant species both homeless and helpless. We must act now to conserve wildlife corridors that would save species and mitigate against the mass extinction crisis we are rapidly hurtling toward,” said Sen. Udall in a press release. “In New Mexico, our millions of acres of public lands are home to thousands of iconic species that could vanish if we fail to take action that enable species to survive.”

There are approximately 1 – 2 million wildlife vehicle collisions annually. A Federal Highways Administration study found road mortality is one of the leading threats to at least 21 endangered and threaten species. And according to the same study, accidents cost Americans approximately eight billion dollars a year. While the damage is mostly monetary for people, wildlife often end up squished roadkill.

The idea for a unifying wildlife corridors framework is hardly new. Rep. Beyer sponsor a wildlife corridors bill back in 2016 and, most recently, a similar bill was sponsor by both Sen. Udall and Rep. Beyer in December 2018. Both proposals stalled in the House after being submitted to subcommittees.

Nevertheless, research on places like Banff National Park have shown that building wildlife corridors can be a powerful tool for protecting biodiversity. One study found that the installation of wildlife crossings along stretches of the Trans-Canada Highway reduced collisions on average by 80% over a 24-year period.

Such success has spurred some states to warm up to the idea of animal crossings. The Western Governors Association and several New England states, along with south eastern Canadian provinces, have already drafted agreements that recognize the importance of increasing wildlife connectivity. And at least seven states have proposed legislation that would require Fish and Wildlife departments to identify, study, or install wildlife corridors. In many of them, linking habitats would protect some of our most iconic species like big horn sheep, pronghorn, grizzly bears, wolves, and the Florida panther.

“With roughly one in five animal and plant species in the U.S. at risk of extinction due to habitat loss and fragmentation, one of the simplest yet most effective things we can do is to provide them ample opportunity to move across lands and waters,” said Rep. Beyer. “The U.N. report on accelerating extinctions makes it clear that the window for action to protect the planet’s biodiversity is closing.”

Wildlife corridors are especially useful for connecting national parks, which act as refuges, but are being pushed to their limits as climates change and development erodes what habitat is left. As such, the once vast areas degrade, reducing their ability to sustain the myriad of species and plants that depend on them.

In practice, the bill would grant authority to key federal agencies including the Department of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Interior, and Transportation to designate wildlife corridors on federal lands. And they would work with state, tribal, and voluntary private stakeholders to identify, build, and manage the corridors on non-federal land. Regional Wildlife Movement Councils will identify and rank non-federal projects and use money from the Wildlife Grant Program to incentivize land owners willing to participate. The goal would be to connect federal and non-federal lands to create an entire system that will traverse the entire country.

Despite the bill’s support among conservation groups and bipartisan sponsors (one republican, Vern Buchanan (R-FL), cosponsored it), it’s unclear whether it’ll pass the House, let alone a Republican lead Senate. In all likelihood, more momentum is needed across the aisle before there’s any further movement. Yet the bill’s sponsors remain resolute.

“The science is clear: human activity is destroying and disrupting the habitats of wildlife around the world. If we don’t change course, entire ecosystems will be lost and entire species will be wiped out forever. It’s already happening,” said Sen. Wyden (D-OR), a cosponsor, in a statement. “The United States needs to do its part in taking better care of our planet and protecting the one million plant and animal species now facing extinction before it’s too late.”

Compassionate Conservation—Saving The Lives of Wild Carnavore and Livestock

Real world solutions to using non lethal wolf management for people and wild Carnavore.

I’ve been a volunteer for Wisconsin’s wolf recovery since 1998. There were only 66 wolf packs in the state at that time. Today there are roughly 232 wolf packs spread through the northern and central forests. Thankfully wolf and livestock conflicts are at a minimum, and there are many non lethal solutions available for livestock producers to employ. There are many factors involved, and employing them as soon ass possible is being proactive. There are several abatements available, such as; Foxlights a nighttime predator deterrent, flandry, and guard animals. These solutions need to be put in place before wolf depredation occurs to any livestock. And it’s important that livestock producers burry any livestock so the carcasses don’t attract wolves.

One very important step to coexistence for people & gray wolves is to educate and advocate by helping & educating those living in wolf country. The objective is to save the lives of Gray wolves and livestock. Whether we live in the city or urban areas, in or out of wolf range, it’s all about solving how we live alongside wolves! Wisconsin’s wild wolf is back on the landscape, and has been since the late 1970s. The Gray wolf is an essential part of the ecosystem. Let’s work together to save Gray wolves and livestock!

I’m a distributor of Foxlights a nighttime predator deterrent.

The following is a short video I filmed of Brad Khole WDNR Wildlife Damages Specialist.

Click here for more reading about ways to reduce conflicts between wolves and Livestock owners.