Dear Senator Tammy Baldwin; As a Wisconsin resident, I am writing to implore you to keep gray wolves listed 

WODCW’s letter writing campaign yielded several fact filled letters urging Democratic Senator Tammy Baldwin to withdraw her support of federal delisting. Unfortunately the senator did not withdraw her support of removing the wolf from the endangered species list in the states of Wisconsin, Minnesota, Wyoming & Michigan. The federal wolf delisting action is a real possibility with this new congress. The following is one of these letters written to Senator Baldwin, read on:

Dear Senator Tammy Baldwin,
As a Wisconsin resident, I am writing to implore you to keep gray wolves listed as endangered species per the recommendations of U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell of Washington, D.C. The decision to once again delist gray wolves in Wisconsin and resume hunting and trapping should be based on science not politics. 
I’ve included some of my reasons for opposing this decision as well as quotes from two of the letters that were sent on Sept. 27 2014 and October 15, 2014 to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officer regarding this topic by wildlife biologist, Adrian Treves, director of the Carnivore Coexistence Lab for the UW-Madison’s Nelson Institute, B. Bergstrom, PhD, D. Parsons, MS, P. Paquet, PhD, R.P. Thiel, Certified Wildlife Biologist (Retired), and Jonathan Way, PhD. Their detailed analysis sheds light on the misleading statistics reported by Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) related to wolf hunt mortality rates; birth rates; unreported poaching; effects of year round, unregulated training of free-running dogs on wolves, night and day, year-round, with no rules or safeguards for law enforcement to implement; and inadequate recording and monitoring of wolf populations in general.
After reading the analysis of mortality levels of wolves before and after “harvest,” and reviewing the lack of adequate monitoring of populations, I am gravely concerned that delisting wolves from the endangered species list will result in severely diminished populations. In addition, the post-delisting monitoring (PDM) rules required by the Endangered Species Acts (ESA) of 1973 and published in the Federal Register require the USFWS to exert regulatory authority monitoring for not less than five years. C.M. Wooley, acting regional director for USFWS out of Minnesota, declined to implement PDM, saying, “The service no longer serves as a regulating entity to protect the wolf” nor has “a role in regulating gray wolves in any of the states of the Western Great Lakes.” This is clearly in violation of the ESA.
Other concerns regarding delisting wolves and the subsequent wolf hunts presented in the Sept. 27 and Oct.15 letters include:
The USFWS was given inaccurate and incomplete data by the Wisconsin DNR and was not able to determine wolf populations in Wisconsin. 

Other factors Indicating a potential cause for concern included a significant adverse change in wolf, wolf prey, or wolf habitat management practices or protection across a substantial portion of the occupied wolf range in the Western Great Lakes wolf population. (Including Wisconsin.)

Data on successful reproduction of Wisconsin wolf packs have not been presented publicly or presented to the independent scientific community for review. These data were provided in the past, thus interannual comparisons require them. These data are essential to proper estimates of population status because substantial population declines can occur at moderate levels of mortality if reproduction is impaired.

Wisconsin did not submit all wolf carcasses for necropsy as required. … Without these data we cannot assess if poaching has risen with initiation of harvest or deregulation of hound training in Wisconsin.

On July 10,2014, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals allowed training hounds on wolves year-round, night and day, without strict regulation anywhere free-running hounds are allowed, and without safeguards for wolves or hounds. The unregulated use of this novel training method cannot guarantee the safety of wolf pups or older wolves confronted by a pack of ≥6 hounds. This activity is currently unmonitored because the timing, location, and method of hound training are not currently regulated and there are no provisions for informing law enforcement when training is underway. Both of these potential threats could be severe and could require additional regulation by the ESA as ‘”to harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or collect, or to attempt to engage in any such conduct’, ESA Sec. 3(19)) (Wisconsin is the only state in the US to allow dogs be used in wolf hunts.)

Facing unmonitored new threats (hound-hunting and hound-training), potential increases in an old threat (poaching), and changes in monitoring methods, we express strong scientific concerns about Wisconsin’s wolf management.

In sum, mortality data are not reported using the best available science and these data remain unclear more than 60 days after our first letter of concern and over two years after delisting. … Therefore we urge emergency relisting pending independent scientific review.

Most importantly, the wildlife biologists recommended in the Sept. 27 letter:
We recommend an independent scientific review by scientists from multiple disciplines who have peer-reviewed, scientific publications on wolf mortality, hound-hunting, or human dimensions of poaching.

The independent scientists should be chosen to avoid those with conflicts of interest or otherwise beholden to the USFWS or the WDNR. That panel should be authorized by the USFWS to inspect all data collected by the State of Wisconsin. 

In other words, Senator Baldwin, in order to obtain the best available science for making decisions regarding the management of gray wolf populations in Wisconsin, it is necessary to have knowledgable scientists from multiple disciplines who are free from conflicts of interest or other political pressures making recommendations for state regulations related to wolf management.
One last issue to mention, which is also addressed by Adrian Treves, (director of the Carnivore Coexistence Lab, UW-Madison) regards the justification of a wolf hunt based on a decreasing deer population:
Although consumption of deer has increased as the wolf population has grown, wolves are not driving deer numbers down to dangerous levels,” the biologist says. The biggest factor that affects our deer herd are winters and the hunting [season] harvest.

In closing, I’ve chosen to address the issue of delisting gray wolves in Wisconsin by quoting unbiased, wildlife scientists whose analysis and recommendations were presented in two letters from September 27, 2014 and October 15, 2014 to the USFWS. Using best available science, their recommendations reflect the management strategies that were envisioned when the Endangered Species Act was first created in 1973, These scientists are not beholden to politics, gun hunting organizations or environmentalists. They have used their knowledge of wolf biology to assess our current wolf management practices, and based on that knowledge, requested the gray wolf be relisted on the endangered species list in 2014.
I am asking you, Senator Baldwin, to please consider the scientific views presented by the wildlife biologists quoted in this letter when making your decision regarding delisting. I would also encourage you to read the letters in their entirety that are attached to this email. 
In addition, keep in mind that the majority of Wisconsin residents support a wolf population (2014) at least as large as the state has now, according to a survey released by the Department of Natural Resources. 
Thank you for taking the time to consider my opinions that reflect the best available science-based information I’ve presented.
I’m hopeful you’ll make the right decision to keep the gray wolf on the endangered species list and work with the USFWS and the Wisconsin DNR to provide better monitoring and management practices, which will allow transparency in evaluating gray wolf populations in the future. Currently, neither organization has provided evidence they have achieved this goal.

Sincerely,

Patricia Lowry

Madison 

~~~

Featured image by John E Marriott

Top predators like wolves, bears, lions and tigers have declined dramatically around the world over the past century

Conservationists widen toolkit for predator management

Source: Berkeley News 
By Brett Israel,  12/13/16

Top predators like wolves, bears, lions and tigers have declined dramatically around the world over the past century. One major driver of these declines is retaliatory killing by people following predator attacks on domestic livestock. This lethal approach to predator management is increasingly controversial not only because of ethical concerns, but also the role predators can play in healthy ecosystems. A new UC Berkeley study shows that many non-lethal methods of predator control can be highly effective in protecting livestock from predators and in turn, saving predators from people.
A tiger drags a cow at Jennie Miller’s study site in India

The Berkeley study examined 66 published, peer-reviewed research papers that measured how four categories of lethal and non-lethal mitigation techniques — preventive livestock husbandry, predator deterrents, predator removal, and indirect management of land or wild prey — influenced attacks on livestock. The most consistently effective tools (showing 70 percent or greater effectiveness in at least two studies) were guard dogs, electric fencing, electrified fladry (electric fence with hanging colored flags), light and sound devices, shock collar, and removal of predators, which includes both killing and translocation to other places.
“Livestock owners spend immense resources on stopping carnivore attacks but may never know whether the costs were truly worthwhile,” said Jennie Miller, a researcher at Panthera who will become a postdoctoral researcher at Berkeley in the Department of Environmental, Science, Policy and Management in January. “If livestock owners can’t choose the most efficient tool for handling their problem predator and protecting their livelihood, how can we possibly expect them to peaceably coexist with large carnivores in their backyards?”
The study was published December 13 in the Wildlife Society Bulletin.
Large carnivores are critical to protect because, as top predators, they can stabilize entire ecosystems. Despite their importance, 77 percent of the 31 largest terrestrial carnivores are declining in population, with 61 percent listed by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature as vulnerable, endangered or critically endangered. The global decline in large carnivores is due to many factors, including human-carnivore conflict that often stems from the need to stop carnivores from attacking livestock. At the same time, chronic conflict with large carnivores can threaten agricultural systems, which must be viable to support rural livelihoods and economies.
Currently there is little consensus on which management techniques are most useful and under what circumstances, or on the associated tradeoffs between duration and effectiveness level. That’s partly because so few studies have quantitatively measured the effects of some promising methods. For example, human guards and killing predators — both of which involve high financial and time costs and implications for human and animal well-being — have been quantitatively tested by just one study each.
A night enclosure for livestock at Miller’s study site in India 

A night enclosure for livestock at Miller’s study site in India. (Photo by Jennie Miller)
The new study found that preventive husbandry and deterrents were most effective in reducing livestock losses. These methods, however, showed wide variability due to a suite of external factors, such as how well equipment was installed and maintained. Husbandry methods ranged between 42 percent and 100 percent effective, while deterrents ranged anywhere from highly effective to wholly ineffective.
The wide variability could also be due to an apparent tradeoff between the effectiveness of protective methods and the length of time a given tool remains effective. Deterrents, therefore, are likely most effective when implemented during brief times of high carnivore risk, such as the calving or lambing season, when short-term protection of livestock would save the most animals from attacks.
“This paper shows that if we step back and take a broader look, we can derive some working principles to help guide more effective control of livestock depredation and minimize the need for lethal control of these iconic animals,” said co-author Oswald Schmitz, Oastler Professor of Population and Community Ecology at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.
Lethal predator control has received particularly little study and monitoring, the study’s authors pointed out.
“In spite of lethal control being very widely used, it really hasn’t been studied well enough to make scientific comparisons with other, non-lethal methods, which is surprising,” said Arthur Middleton,an assistant professor in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management and a study co-author.
As a result, the authors suggest the lethal management method should receive closer monitoring and more rigorous testing.
The study also identified many negative biases in studies of techniques to reduce livestock losses, including the lack of replication across carnivore species and geographic regions, a heavy focus on the Canidae family (wolves and coyotes) and on the United States, Europe and Africa, and a publication bias towards studies that reported positive results. To prevent these biases in future studies, the authors are recommending a review group and additional funding to support rigorous testing of methods, especially the usefulness of human guards and lethal control, since these techniques involve large financial and time costs and have detrimental impacts on human health and carnivore populations.
“Chronic conflict between large carnivores and livestock not only limits the long-term viability of many carnivore populations – it also carries economic and emotional costs for the livestock producers and others involved in these conflicts,” Middleton said. “All these are important to alleviate, no matter how long it takes.” Source

In Canada, Ontario government decides to scrap their ill-advised proposal to increase the hunting of wolves and coyotes.

Government is finally listening to science. Source: April 6, 2016 Ontario Government Scraps Proposal to Increase Hunting of Wolves and Coyotes

Animal protection and conservation groups encourage responsible approach to wildlife management

Humane Society International/Canada, Animal Alliance of Canada, Animal Alliance Environment Voters Party of Canada, Born Free, Canadians for Bears, Coyote Watch Canada, Earthroots, Wolf Awareness, Zoocheck

The Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry has scrapped a plan to allow increased killing of wolves and coyotes across the province. The poorly-conceived proposal was branded as an effort to protect moose populations, yet even the province’s own data showed that the indiscriminate killing of predators is not an effective wildlife management practice. 
A coalition of animal protection and conservation organizations in Ontario and across Canada worked to oppose this proposal. The coalition is comprised of: Animal Alliance of Canada, Animal Alliance Environment Voters Party of Canada, Born Free, Canadians for Bears, Coyote Watch Canada, Earthroots, Humane Society International/Canada, Wolf Awareness and Zoocheck. The groups released the following statements in response to the MNRF’s proposal:
“We welcome the Ontario government’s decision to scrap their ill-advised proposal to increase the hunting of wolves and coyotes,” said Gabriel Wildgen, campaign manager for HSI/Canada. “The Ontario public cares about animals, and it would be simply inexcusable to allow the indiscriminate killing of some of our most majestic wild animals at the behest of special interest groups. The best available science does not support scapegoating and targeting of a species to make up for wildlife and habitat mismanagement.” Click HERE to read more.

  

 
Image: John E. Marriott Photography

An explanation of why wolves kill more than they can eat.

Source: The Truth About Wolf Surplus Killing: Survival, Not Sport What gets called “surplus killing” actually isn’t, it’s killing for future feeding By: Wes Siler Apr 5, 2016

You probably saw the headlines a couple weeks ago when a pack of wolves near Jackson, Wyoming, killed 19 elk in a single night. The event was blown up by CNN, The Guardian, and others as an example of the threat re-introduced wolf populations in the American west present to game and livestock. But I knew there must be more to it than just big bad wolf fears, so I started digging.
“We’re not sure what triggers surplus killing,” regional wildlife supervisor for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department John Lund told USA Today, “In many cases, predators will kill with the intent to eat, but in this case, something triggered, and they went crazy, and just took down each elk, and moved onto the next.”
Why do wolves kill more animals than they can eat? I think I just found out. And it’s not because they’re crazy. 

The first thing this event reminded me of was the Chinese movie Wolf Totem. The story follows two young men who are sent from Beijing to Mongolia to teach rural herders about communism. Those herders live peacefully with the wolves who occasionally prey on their livestock, accepting it as nature’s balance. At one point in the movie, the wolves drive a herd of elk into deep snow, killing them, but also preserving their carcasses for future use throughout the harsh winter. It got me wondering about the incident in Wyoming, and whether storing meat for future use could be a real behavior of wolves here in North America. Click here to read more.


Featured image by: John E Marriott Photography



Sarcoptic mange, present in one of 10 known packs in Yellowstone as of 2015

Source: Effects of Sarcoptic Mange on Gray Wolves in Yellowstone National Park. And Yellowstone Wolf: Project Citizen Science

Recent research

The dynamics and impacts of sarcoptic mange on Yellowstone’s wolves

Research contact: Emily Almberg
Project background
Sarcoptes scabiei, the mite that causes the skin infection known as sarcoptic mange, was introduced to the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem as a biological control agent aimed at eliminating wolves during the predator control era in the early 1900s.
Although the mite is globally distributed and was at least present throughout parts of Canada in the early 1900s, to date, we have no evidence that it was locally present prior to its release by state veterinarians.

Following the eradication of wolves from the ecosystem in the 1930s, mange is thought to have persisted within the regional furbearer populations (coyotes, foxes, etc.)  To read more from Yellowstone Wolf: Project Citizen Science click HERE.   To read more from: Effects of Sarcoptic Mange on Gray Wolves in Yellowstone National Park click HERE

 

Figure 1.

 
 

Figure 2.

 
Wolves were reintroduced in 1995 and 1996 to Yellowstone National Park, and mange began appearing in wolves outside of Yellowstone in 2002. By the early winter of 2007, mange had invaded the park’s wolves (Fig 1 & 2).


Source  and Study Shows Cold and Windy Nights Physically Drain Mangy Wolves Released: 3/29/2016 12:53:05 PM

The Bozeman Film Society kicks off it’s inaugural Science on Screen (SoS) Series on March 30th

The Bozeman Film Society kicks off it’s inaugural Science on Screen (SoS) Series on March 30th with gorgeous coming of age drama, DRUID PEAK. Director Marni Zelnick & executive producer, Maureen Mayer, along with scientists, Dr. Doug Smith, lead biologist of the Yellowstone Wolf Project, and Dr. Katey Franklin, director of MSU Human Development Clinic and Addictions Counseling Program will join us for this special opening night SoS event.

Funded by a grant from the Coolidge Corner Theatre Foundation and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, BFS is one of only 23 independent non-profit cinemas from across the country awarded grants to implement a SoS program at their theater. Now in its 9th year, Science on Screen provides national funding to expand film and scientific literacy by creatively pairing films with lively expert presentations by local scientists.
A recipient of the Sloan Foundation Feature Film Production Award, Druid Peak is set against the backdrop of the wolf reintroduction program in Yellowstone National Park – a redemptive coming of age story with a conservation twist. Troubled teenager, Owen (Spencer Treat Clark,) whose mom, unable to control him, is shipped off to the wilds of Wyoming, where his estranged father (Andrew Wilson) works as a Yellowstone wolf biologist. Shot on location in Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, Utah and West Virginia, the film portrays the power of wilderness in the human experience. The LA Times calls the film, “Enlightening… and Undeniably Gorgeous.” Rated PG-13 (for brief language), the film runs 115 minutes
A short introduction, ‘Wolves & Teens: “Un-Packing” Social Creatures’ will be presented by scientists Doug Smith and Katey Franklin. They will be joined for a panel discussion after the screening by Druid Peak writer/director Marni Zelnick, and executive producer Maureen Mayer. The screening is a collaboration with the Montana Outdoor Science School and the Montana Environmental Education Association.
Other Science On Screen films include Jurassic World, Saturday, April 30th at 3 pm & 7 pm with renowned Paleontologist, Dr. Jack Horner, and The Martian on Wednesday, May 25th at 7 pm with Dr. Mac Burgess, MSU Plant Science and Plant Pathology.
Click HERE to BUY TICKETS>>>
  
All Science on Screen Presentations begin at 7:00 PM 

For more information visit bozemanfilmsociety.org

Letter to the Editor: To understand wolves, use science

Source: Arizona Daily Sun 

To the editor:
“Wolves are the only animal that kill for pleasure.” A concerned sportsman presented this belief as fact at a Game and Fish hearing dealing with the reintroduction of the Mexican gray wolf.
I have no idea what goes on in the mind of a wolf, or for that matter, others of my own species. My neighbor who lost a dozen of her chickens can only guess what was going on in the labrador’s head during the slaughter. Although, I no longer hunt, I’m not proud of the fact that recreation played a part in motivating me to kill animals. The man who holds the belief that wolves are the only animal who kill for pleasure need only look in the mirror.
The sun revolves around a 6,000- year-old flat Earth. My faith has more truth than your faith. Some races of people are inherently inferior. The only good wolf is a dead wolf.
As irrational as some beliefs might be, they provide a simple answer to complex questions. Unexamined beliefs fueled by emotions are the antithesis of scientific inquiry. Beliefs provide comfort and security. If we fail to examine our beliefs they may become an obstacle to ever overcoming ignorance and bigotry.
The concerned sportsman is not a fan of the wolf. He believes passionately that they will do harm to his interest. I may not agree with him, but I honor his right to express his opinion. If we were to examine our beliefs we might discover that science proves us both wrong. For the health of the Earth, including wolves, we are best served by science.

DAVID LASH
Flagstaff
{Featured image by Jack Bell Photography}


Tracking the wolf pack – Wisconsin 

Winter is the best time of year to get out to track wild wolves in Wisconsin. I’m looking forward to the fresh cold air, red rosey cheeks and spotting the first wolf track of the season. It’s time to track the wolf pack in Wisconsin.

First up is a tracking re-fresher course which I took in December and hosted by Crex Meadows Wildlife Area. A part of Wisconsin’s scenic Indianhead Country, the Crex Meadows Wildlife Area is located in beautiful Burnett County, just north of the Village of Grantsburg. At 30,000 acres, Crex is one of the largest state owned wildlife areas in Wisconsin.

 

Crex Meadows Wildlife Area lobby

 
My journey north to the Crex Meadows Wildlife Area took two hours. On the way I saw a flock of sandhill cranes,  red-tailed hawks and a couple of deer.  I arrived just before nine and ready to learn!

The volunteer Carnivore Tracking and Wolf Ecology Workshop was held on December 12 & 13, 2015. I tracked from 2000-2013 and being an experienced tracker only needed the carnivore tracking workshop. 

The day began with tracking skills held in the center’s classroom.  Wisconsin DNR biologists and experienced technicians reviewed track identification and interpreting gait (how an animal walks).  The instructors taught us how a wolf direct registers when it walks, the front foot is larger, and how to measure track sizes and gaits. Lastly, taught the important skill of how to tell the difference between a dog and a wolf track. 

Although the focus is on the wolf, the instructors also taught us how to identify other wild animal tracks. We were shown slides of fox, snowshoe hare, field mice, skunk, and bobcat to mention a few of the animal tracks.  Of course there was a test and a lunch was served. 

Next, the afternoon portion of the tracking workshop involved going out into the field.  We were told to dress for snow, unfortunately there wasn’t any. 

The instructors went out the prior evening to find us some fresh wolf sign and found tracks in a sandy area of the wildlife area.

Sarah Boles, a WDNR Wildlife Technician, instructing carnivore/wolf trackers. – Photograph by Rachel Tilseth

We were lucky to see fairly fresh coyote, fox and wolf tracks that afternoon.

Wolf track found at Crex Meadows Wildlife Area during carnivore track training workshop on December 12, 2015 – photograph by Rachel Tilseth

We found fresh wolf scat as well. Finding black wolf scat indicates a fresh kill. 

Fresh wolf scat found at Crex Meadows Wildlife Area during carnivore track training workshop , December 12, 2015 – Photograph by Rachel Tilseth

There were roughly 30 carnivore tracking class participants that day. Participants ranged from outdoor enthusiasts, hunters and DNR staff.  Even UW-Madison students made the five hour journey north to attend the tracking workshop.

Carnivore tracking workshop participants check for wolf sign at Crex Meadows Wildlife Area, December 12, 2015 – Photograph by Rachel Tilseth

The  carnivore tracking workshop ended in early afternoon. I signed up for my tracking blocks on the DNR Wisconsin’s volunteer carnivore tracking program and I’m ready to get back into tracking wolves in Wisconsin.

Why am I back tracking wolves?

I spent decades working on Wisconsin’s wolf recovery program as a volunteer winter wolf tracker. During those years I was a wolf stakeholder and allowed a voice/input on the wolf management process. 

That all changed when Wisconsin implemented a trophy hunt on wolves, read on;

On April 2, 2012 Act 169 If the wolf is not listed on the federal endangered list and is not listed on the state endangered list, the department shall allow the hunting and trapping of wolves and shall regulate such hunting and trapping as provided in this section and shall implement a wolf management plan. (Source)

Wisconsin legislators pushed a trophy hunt on wolves (supported by Wisconsin Bear Hunter’s Association and other hunt clubs) the  DNR Secretary Confirms That Wolf Hunt Opponents Were Removed From Advisory Committee. Thus, wolf stakeholders, like myself were cut out from having a voice in Wisconsin’s wolf management.

Before wolves were delisted and deemed a game species to be hunted, wolf stakeholders consisted of Human Society of the U.S., Sierra Club, Defenders of Wildlife, and volunteer wolf trackers such as myself. The wolf management process was very comprehensive and well informed with scientific, citizen and hunter input. 

But now, the Wisconsin Wolf Advisory Committee consists of WDNR biologists, bow hunters, bear hunters, hound hunters, agriculture, trappers, with one seat for native Americans, and one seat for wolf advocacy. As you can see hunters have the majority of citizen input. 

In 2012 Wolves of Douglas County Wisconsin was formed to fight the war on Wisconsin’s wild wolves and to Ban the use of dogs to hunt wolves in Wisconsin. 

With wolves back on the ESA, now is the ideal time for me to get back into tracking wolves. Hunters have been tracking wolves over the past three years. I hope to have a voice in wolf management once again,  and that’s why I’m back tracking wolves.

I began tracking wolves 3 weeks ago, and will keep you up to date. Click HERE to follow Track the pack – Wisconsin on Pinterest. 

In the meantime, please help wolves by contacting your representatives in congress and ask them to oppose any legislation that calls for delisting of wolves. At this time there’s anti- wolf legislation in a rider attached to the sportsman’s act making its way way through congress.

Trophy hunts are about power not conservation. 

How to slander wolves even further than they already are (or hey CHEEZburger, what’s up?)

By Lin Kerns of Canis Lupus 101 Blog Spot

How to slander wolves even further than they already are (or hey CHEEZburger, what’s up?)

Last night, during a final check of my email before bedtime, I saw my usual subscription to CHEEZburger pop up in the inbox. I thought, nice… something sweet to see before I go to sleep. Imagine my shock when I happened to see a completely, unfunny twist on, of all things, an animal. Aren’t these the people making money by promoting the goodness of our furry, feathered, finny, and scaley relatives? Not exactly and not anymore.

So there is a new “species” making the headlines these days: the coywolf. I have even relayed such news. However, I have left the audience to their own intelligence and not tried to insult them or their sensibilities. This article, reprinted in part by CHEEZburger, contains a rather exciteable degree of discovery on this hybrid that now “number in the millions.” That’s a scary way of saying that no one really knows how many there are out there. Also, surely you have noticed that while a species may be a “man made” term, your name is a term used for what you are called. I’m still not sure what that was all about. This is the usual expanse of consciousness on an otherwise item left in the lap of real science.

But what is so bad, so vastly horrific, is that the author makes out coywolves to be “super fast killing machines.” Not animals seeking to survive by living on the refuse of human populations, living,  hidden away from people, as much as possible due to an innate lack of trust-no, these are animals that will come for your children and whisk them away in the middle of the night never to be seen again! Yes, that’s what was stated.

Wolves don’t do that to children and the people who believe such nonsense are an ignorant, superstitious lot. Certainly coyotes don’t do that; everytime I’m out in a field and see one, the critter always runs away. And your dog? Well, really? However, supposedly this super concentrated blend of genetic material recombines into some super powered spidey juice that conforms a hybrid animal into one bad ass mofo you wouldn’t want to see in a dark alley, much less in your own backyard!

How does that happen? It doesn’t. And if you wish to believe in such tripe, then I’ve got a few websites for you to visit, like “Queen Elizabeth raised an alien baby” or “Peter Pan, still young, is alive on the island of Bali.” No one in the scientific community can, so far, agree that this is even a new species or simply a hybrid (which I suspect it is). But if coyote DNA is dominant, which I agree that it is, then wouldn’t the hybrid find the characteristics of said coyote to be dominant, as well?

Let’s get back to wolves… because the coy-hybrid has wolf DNA within each cell of its body, now they are further reckoned to be fond of humans as food? Since when? The Middle Ages when, let’s face it, science didn’t exist at all, but old wives’ tales during long winter nights took precedence? But to FURTHER perpetuate a myth by, of all groups, CHEEZburger, is an outright betrayal of everything they’ve ever stood for.

Is CHEEZburger only about the hamster, the rabbit, the kitten, and the puppy? Are you only worthy of defence if you are merely soft, cute, cuddly, and/or photogenic? Does any creature who belongs to a list of predators is seen as inconsequential? I don’t think that’s so, because I’ve seen support on this particular website for lions, leopards, and tigers. What gives then that wolves are targeted? And why with such vehemence?

I, along with many other good folks and organizations spend a majority of our time trying to save wolves from dying out on a planet riddled with greedy politicians, Big Oil and Mining puppeteering ranchers, and Billy Bob Redneck who just wants to shoot and kill theem. And we certainly don’t appreciate having our work undermined by a web page supposedly devoted to animals. We need help, CHEEZburger, and not some sarcastic piece of tripe that will further aid those aforementioned non-wolf people.

What I’m asking you all to do, if you are still with me and you believe that what you see below is offensive, is to go to the link marked SOURCE  and write a comment. If you love wolves, and I know you do, then please take a minute of your time and make your voice heard. And if CHEEZburger does not respond or apologize, then unsubscribe them. Thanks for reading and howl on, my wolf pack. Howl out LOUD.

Best to all,
Lin

Science of The Day: Coyotes and Wolves Are Mating to Create The ‘Coywolf’

Science of The Day: Coyotes and Wolves Are Mating to Create The 'Coywolf'
There a new species emerging right before scientist’s eyes. And this doesn’t happen very often.
Because of a lack of other wolves to mate with, scientists believe they are mating with coyotes and dogs to create an entirely new species: the coywolf.
The number of coywolf has grown into the millions in northeastern North America during the last century.

According to The Economist:
The mixing of genes that has created the coywolf has been more rapid, pervasive and transformational than many once thought. Javier Monzón, who worked until recently at Stony Brook University in New York state (he is now at Pepperdine University, in California) studied the genetic make-up of 437 of the animals, in ten north-eastern states plus Ontario. He worked out that, though coyote DNA dominates, a tenth of the average coywolf’s genetic material is dog and a quarter is wolf.
The DNA from both wolves and dogs (the latter mostly large breeds, like Doberman Pinschers and German Shepherds), brings big advantages, says Dr Kays. At 25kg or more, many coywolves have twice the heft of purebred coyotes. With larger jaws, more muscle and faster legs, individual coywolves can take down small deer. A pack of them can even kill a moose.
Basically the combination of wolf, coyote and dog DNA has created super fast killing machines.
Hold your children close, America.