Archives of Conservation News Stories in Western Wolf Country


The stories below are roughly arranged in chronological order. Be sure to scroll down so you don't miss updated stories. Unless in quotes, the commentary is mine.

Please be aware that not all articles and links will be working because some of the sources do not keep archives


Articles from January - May 2003

4-30-2003. Western Watersheds Project wins again on grazing in SW Idaho. News Release.

4-29-2003. The Thorofare is the furthest from a road, but it is a thorofare. Missoulian. By Sherry Devlin. I am anxiously awaiting the arrival of Gary Fergusson's new book "Hawks Rest: A Season in the Remote Heart of Yellowstone"

4-29-2003. Steamboat, Yellowstone's biggest geyser, erupts again. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette. Four times in one year -- this is unusual. Thermal activity seems to be increasing at Norris Geyser Basin.

4-28-2003. Willows and wolves: Idea that wolves increase Yellowstone's biodiversity gaining strength. By Scott McMillion Chronicle Staff Writer. It is my perception too that willows have increased on the northern range. Not only that, but new aspen are sprouting (as they generally do because they are clones), but they are not being eating back to the ground by elk. The decline of aspen on the northern range has been of concern for many years.

4-27-2003. New GOP forest bill would allow 1000 acre clear cuts. Worldlink.com. By Jeff Barnard, Associated Press Writer. A thousand acre clear-cut is about 1 1/2 square miles. Current forest laws generally limit clear cuts to 40 acres. While the authors of this bill call this "aggressive thinning," most people know that clear cuts remove all the trees, not thin them. Controlling insects is another justification for this bill, but even the greenest forests always harbor insects that eat needles, bark or leaves. Their presence could be used to justify anything.

4-27-2003. Push to outsource Park Service jobs has workers wincing. By Michael Jamison of the Missoulian. The push to privatize most Park Service and other federal government jobs is pure far right-wing ideology. There is no evidence that business will be any more efficient at these programs than government. Almost all of the scandals since 2001 have been business scandals: Enron, Worldcom, Qwest, Arthur Andersen, Global Crossing, Dyenergy. With the exception of the DOI's complicity in the looting of the Indian Trust funds, there have never been U.S. Government scandals of this financial magnitude. Furthermore, the notion of strict business efficiency has no place in most of government. Business is to make a profit. The purpose of government is to provide goods and services, like national parks, that private enterprise seems inherently unable to provide. The trouble with the far right is they have no concept of a public or of a public interest. They don't seem to understand that the concept of America presumes a public for there to be a democracy. If there is no public, only corporatism, the result will be high tech feudalism.

4-27-2003. Wyoming: Wolf Problems Loom. By Becky Bohrer. Billings Gazette. This is kind of a standard wolf delisting story.
I have been thinking it might be well if delisting is delayed until wolf populations peak and then level off or decline as all other wildlife populations do. Then people would see that wolves are subject to the same natural forces as everything else. The peak could be as early as this year, IMO.

4-25-2003. Forest Service may ignore form-letter comments. By Dan Hansen. Spokane Spokesman-Review. There might be some merit in this because at present it seems like the Forest Service counts printed and email forms when it favors their side and ignores them otherwise.

4-24-2003. Billings Gazette. Guest opinion: What would Teddy Roosevelt say today? By Michael Scott. Greater Yellowstone Coalition. "Today is the 100th anniversary of the Roosevelt's dedication of the famous Yellowstone entrance arch."

4-22-2003. Editorial. Casper Star-Tribune. Wrong to punish G&F biologist for wolf critique.

4-22-2003. Public comments on Gallatin Travel Plan analyzed. By Scott McMillion. Bozeman Daily Chronicle.

4-22-2003. Parts of Yellowstone ecosystem respond differently to increased grizzly bear numbers. By Dan Whipple. Casper Star Tribune. I linked to this story in Science Daily News 4-18, but this is a more complete story, but still with a misleading headline (so I changed it). " . . .wolves are preying on elk and bison at about the rates predicted prior to wolf reintroduction. But wolves have had little or no impact on moose, deer or bighorn sheep, and pronghorn numbers are actually increasing since the wolf was reintroduced."

4-22-2003. Survey cites support for ATVs in forest. Billings Gazette. AP. Actually the survey by the Univ. of Wyoming shows a plurality of nearby residents think they will be negatively affected if motorized use is reduced (not ATV use; they are not the same). A bare majority thinks they will not be negatively impacted of logging is reduced on this Wyoming national forest.

4-21-2003. Abundance of elk in Flathead Valley, Montana worries game managers. By Jim Mann. Kalispell Daily Interlake.

4-21-2003. Pennsylvania deer heads so large that future forests of the state are in jeopardy. Erie Times News.

4-21-2003. Bridger Wilderness air clearer than Yellowstone's. By Jeff Gearino Casper Star Tribune Southwest Wyoming bureau. This is some good news, especially since the Bridger Wilderness abuts a lot of natural gas development.

4-21-2003. Wolf still present in Wyoming's Big Horn mountains. AP. This wolf was tracked last winter near the MT/WY border. It would be the furtherest east a wolf is known to have traveled from Yellowstone. The wolf might not be alone.

4-19-2003. Stories on the Montana wolf plan meetings.

4-18-2003. More and more confirmations of cougars prompt formation of the Eastern Cougar Network. News Release.

4-17-2003. Idaho State Journal. Our View: Leasing land for grazing, or for environmental protections?

4-13-2003. Outspoken Ranger Bob Jackson loses job. By Brodie Farquhar Casper Star-Tribune staff writer. Here is why the Park Service and the local politicians don't like Jackson. Read Bob Jackson’s testimony about salt baiting and the need for wilderness law enforcement (pdf file).
Update 4-13-2003. Iowa senator demands justice for park ranger. By Jerry Seper. Washington Times.
Update 4-17-2003. Whistle-Blowing Ranger Cries Foul: Seasonal Park Employee Not Rehired. Washington Post.

4-16-2003. Teton County, WY County bans wildlife feeding. 5-0 vote ends contentious debate over feeding of animals on private lands. By Rebecca Huntington. Jackson Hole News and Guide. This is one small, but important victory for the safety of both people and wildlife in a state that has a serious "feeders" mentality.

4-15-2003. Wolves Tour Northern Utah Schools With Message: We're Not Pets. By Kristen Moulton. Salt Lake Tribune. Mission Wolf is one of the most effective organizations in wolf education.

4-15-2003. Chronic Wasting disease up in Wyoming. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette Wyoming Bureau. Fortunately "mad elk" and deer disease is still confined to SE Wyoming, but it is moving toward the NW in Wyoming. Because the disease seems to increase with crowding, the state policy of feeding wintering elk will probably spread it further.

4-15-2003. Alternative 2 of draft Montana wolf plan supported at Bozeman meeting. By Ron Tschida. Bozeman Chronicle. This is the alternative that provides for a minimum of 15 wolf packs under state management. Currently there are 16 packs in the state.

4-13-2003. Lake trout restocking of Jackson Lake revisited. AP. Finally! If cutthroat trout could be restored in Jackson Lake Res. from the suppression caused by the non-native lake trout, it would be of tremendous benefit to wildlife, and I think anglers too would enjoy fishing more for the cutthroat. Lake trout fishing requires a boat, running a deep line, lots of patience, but not much talent.

4-10-2003. Livestock grazing in Idaho's White Clouds Mountains likely to be reduced. By Greg Stahl. Idaho Mountain Express. It should also be noted that the elimination of two Idaho wolf packs -- the White Clouds Pack and the Whitehawk Pack -- took place in this very area. Conservationists for years have been trying to get grazing rules enforced and numbers of livestock congruent with what the land can support in the East Fork of the Salmon River, leaving habitat for fish, elk, bighorn sheep, antelope, deer, and of course those animals like wolves that depend on them.

4-10-2003. Wolf advocates argue against delisting. By Scott McMillion Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer. Although this article says little of it, at the conference Mike Phillips gave a powerful argument for restoring wolves to the southern Rockies. The amount of prey and the magnitude of public land available is incredible -- more than in the Greater Yellowstone.

4-5-2003. Grand Teton National Park land swap bill approved. By Ted Monoson. Billings Gazette Washington Bureau.

4-4-2003. Blaine County residents oppose ATV trail. Commissioners say it's about who controls Custer County. By Todd Adams. Challis Messenger. For those who don't know Idaho, the two adjacent counties Blaine and Custer, in central Idaho, can't stand each other. This dominates debate over not just this big ATV trail, but every aspect of outdoor activity, including elk, deer, cattle, and wolves. The ATV hearing came to my county -- Bannock -- in SE Idaho on April 1. It was a polite meeting, but some central Idaho folks did journey to Pocatello to pack the meeting. I guess my view of the ATV trail is that if done wrong, it could be horrible, but if it is carefully planned, and law enforcement is put on the ground at the very start, it might even be an improvement over the current, unregulated generally lawless situation. The trail would be in Custer, Blaine, and Butte counties.
Earlier story. 3-5-2003. ATV proposal contradicts public’s priorities. Editorial. Idaho Mountain Express.
Earlier story. 2-26-2003. ATV loop proposed from Challis to Arco, Idaho. By Greg Moore. Idaho Mountain Express.

Note: the Challis Messenger is the Custer County Newspaper and the Mountain Express is the Blaine County newspaper.

4-3-2003. Grazing Rights Assailed. By Judy Fahys. The Salt Lake Tribune. Talk about a biased headline! They are grazing privileges, not rights, and they have been abused according to the Western Watersheds Project. On the other hand, this is a pretty good story. The WWP wants the court to terminate 149 grazing permits held by ranchers in Tooele, Rich and Box Elder counties. If these bargain basement permits were rights, the WWP couldn't even file a case to ask this. Having grown up in area, I am well versed in the local tradition of grazing abuse. Tooele County was once called "grass valley." Now there isn't a blade of grass outside the lawns in town.
4-4-2003. Here the WWP news release. "WWP to Federal Court: BLM Violates Law With Utah Grazing Permits."

4-3-2003. Teton County, WY top spot in country for avalanche deaths. Jackson Hole News and Guide by Angus M. Thuermer Jr.

4-2-2003. The Copper Mine Ran Through It: Tales of a River's Rescue. By Jim Robbins. New York Times. Story of the lengthy cleanup of the Clarks Fork River in Montana.

4-2-2003.  Study says Colorado has the habitat to support 1000 wolves. By Gary Gerhardt, Rocky Mountain News

4-1-2003. Gardiner late elk hunt to be pared down. By Scott McMillion Chronicle Staff Writer. There are some misleading figures in this article. Folks have to remember that the 19,000 plus elk on the northern range one year before wolves were reintroduced was the highest elk count ever, not some typical figure. Most commentators at the time said that was too many elk and the Park Service was catching hell for allowing the elk population to "grow out of control." The 9215 elk counted last winter was clearly an undercount and was said so at the time, the true figure being about 11,500 elk. Last winter's hunter success rate of 46% is a high elk hunting success rate compared to most elk hunts in the West. Mild winters cause few elk to leave YNP regardless of the elk population.

4-1-2003 Attempt to skirt Montana game farm initiative fails. By Jennifer McKee. Billings Gazette State Bureau. Far-sighted Montana voters approved an initiative in 2000 to greatly limit game farms, believed by many to be a breeding ground for diseases such as CWD which then escape to wild game. The Montana legislature has been talking all session about repealing the voter-initiated ban on new game farms and hunts on existing farms.

3-31-2003. Searching for wolverines in Oregon. By Alex Pulaski. The last sighting was in 2001.

3-29-2003. Rallying to Protect an American Migration. Sharon Guynup. National Geographic Today. Pronghorn migrate each spring from Wyoming's Red Desert 250 miles north to Grand Teton National Park and vicinity. Their migration route is gravely threatened. If you want to conserve this anicient migration route, the oil and gas development in the Green River Basin and Jack Morrow Hills needs to be stopped. If the migration is cut off, the pronghorn will be extinct in Jackson Hole. Only a few days are left to comment. The alerts are on my wolf country alerts and announcements page.

3-29-2003. Wolf shot near Spalding is Nebraska's first in 90 years. The Independent. A wolf, probably dispersing from Minnesota, has been shot in Nebraska.

3-28-2003. Park's giant Steamboat Geyser erupts, at least is thought to have erupted. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette.

3-28-2003. Report on the first Montana wolf meeting. Montana FWP compiles varied views of wolf future. By John Fitzgerald. Billings Gazette.
3-27-2003. Montana public wolf meetings begin today. Missoulian. By Daryl Gadbow. The complete Montana schedule.

3-27-2003. Progress made on snowmobile wilderness incursions. By Bozeman Chronicle Staff.

3-26-2003. Officials kill off the Red Lodge group of wolves. Billings Gazette. Just reported in the media today, this in fact took place over a month ago. The hard-to-find group was finally found in late last year after 9 months of searching and radio collared. After continuing to occasionally kill cattle both before and after collaring, the USFWS decided to kill the group. Interestingly, the group was infected with mange. There were no pups in the group so it wasn't a true wolf pack.

3-26-2003. Oregon Lawmakers debate wolves. Statesman Journal. This article provides an update on the Oregon wolf legislation, with links to the bills (my old alert is now obsolete and taken down because the bill numbers have changed.)

3-26-2003. Final record of decision on Yellowstone snowmobile continuation signed and groups go to court to challenge it. By Scott McMillion. Bozeman Chronicle.
Related: Quicktime video of snowmobiles in Yellowstone. Greater Yellowstone Coalition.

3-25-2003. Oregon's new governor promises to protect Oregon's state endangered species act. Oregonian. By Michelle Cole.

3-25-2003. Anti-easements bill in Montana legislature criticized. By Jeffifer McKee Billings Gazette State Bureau. The purchase of conservation easements from willing sellers has been a major tool for non-coercive, cooperative conservation of open space, agricultural land, and wildlife habitat. Recently the extreme right wing has been attacking these easements, and now in Montana there is legislation requiring county governments to approve before landowners can sell part of the property as an easement. The fact that some of these anti-easement groups call themselves "property rights" groups shows how insincere these groups are. Property is a bundle of rights. If the government restricts the sale of some of these rights, it is a limitation of property rights. So-called property rights groups who oppose easements are in fact simply anti-conservation groups who disrespect private property.

3-25-2003. Snowmobile wilderness incursions down at Cooke City. By Scott McMillion Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer. Law enforcement works!

3-24-2003. OUR VIEW: (Idaho State Journal). ATV hunting ban is a good move for sportsmen.

3-24-2003. Oregon seeks to reduce protection of wolves. By Bill Monroe. Oregonian. Despite the headline, allowing wolves that kill livestock to be killed is not a dramatic weakening of protection, especially compared to some bills in the Oregon legislature.

3-23-2003. The benefits of beavers. By Todd Wilkinson. National Parks Conservation Magazine.

3-22-2003. Environmental groups want Sawtooth National Recreation Area grazing shut down. by Todd Adams. Challis Messenger. Once you get into this article you will find that the SNRA staff has mailed notices of "non-compliance" with public grazing permit conditions to three different grazing lease permittees, all of whom have shot or have had the government shot wolves in their behalf, including one entire wolf pack.

3-21-2003. 21 accused of violating park snowmobile ban. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette Wyoming Bureau. Snowmobilers were riding illegally, deep in Park backcountry. This has been a growing problem. Hopefully the punishment will be severe enough to deter.

3-23-2003. The Missing Energy Strategy. Opinion of the New York Times. Praises defeat of plan to open Arctic Refuge to oil drilling and says Capitol Hill majority has no new ideas for America's energy . . . same old bias to oil, gas and coal industries.
3-19-2003. Drilling in Alaska, a Priority for Bush, Fails in the Senate. By David Firestone. New York Times.
3-19-2003. Senate rejects oil drilling in Alaska wildlife refuge. Defeat for White House. CNN.
3-19-2003. Republicans for Environmental Protection Pleased with Arctic Refuge Vote. ENN.
Eight Republicans senators stood tall on this vote:  Lincoln Chafee (RI), Norm Coleman (MN), Susan Collins (ME), Mike DeWine (OH), Peter Fitzgerald (IL), John McCain (AZ), Gordon Smith (OR), and Olympia Snowe (ME). They stood up to Alaska Republican Ted Stevens who vowed vengeance. Pro oil company Democrats were John Breaux and Mary Landrieu of Louisiana; Daniel Akaka and Daniel Inouye of Hawaii, and Zell Miller of Georgia.

3-19-2003. On lookout for snowmobile scofflaws. Some venture illegally into [designated] wilderness areas. By Brian Melley. AP.

3-18-2003. Republicans Resigned to Defeat on Alaska Wildlife Refuge Drilling Plan. By David Firestone. New York Times. The drillers remain a vote or two short.

3-18-2003. Case against snowmobiles clear as park air should be. Editorial by the Great Falls Tribune. "The continued use of snowmobiles in Yellowstone National Park is unacceptable for a number of reasons."

3-14-2003. YNP snowmobilers end season with record number of violations. Great Falls Tribune. By Becky Bohrer. Increased encforcement is said to be the reason.

3-14-2003. Montana proposed wolf plan gets qualified praise. AP
3-13-2003. Montana releases its wolf management plan. By Scott McMillion. AP.
Montana's Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks has released Montana's wolf plan. It is similar to the Idaho wolf plan, and lacks the controversial aspects that made the Wyoming plan so controversial.

3-14-2003. Trek to hear wolves howl chilling experience. by Brett French. Billings Gazette Outdoor Writer.

3-13-2003. Forest Service decides to exclude most of the northern portion of famous forest from oil and gas leasing. Jackson Hole News and Guide. By Rebecca Huntington. Here is an important victory, at least in the short run, in the long fight to keep the oil and gas industry (mostly gas) from industrializing the wide open spaces of the state. The old "Teton National Forest" part of the "Bridger-Teton National Forest" will not be offered for oil and gas leasing.

3-13-2003. Male animals more likely to have chronic wasting disease, study finds. By Theo Stein. Denver Post Environment Writer.

3-13-2033. Wolf tracks confirmed in the Bighorn Mountains of Wyoming. AP. This is furthest east a wolf has been tracked in Wyoming. The tracks were very near the Montana border. The area is about 130 miles east of YNP.

3-13-2003. Possible Bush win on Alaska oil could threaten treasured Rocky Mountain Front. Great Falls Tribune editorial.
3-12-2003. Oil Industry just one vote away from grabbing Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. CNN.
Threat of war provides side benefits for many groups. The oil industry always seems to win.

3-11-2003. The BLM's cow wars. Deseret News. By Donna Kemp Spangler. After you read through all the "western way of life mythology talk" in this article, you find that a group of ranchers willingly sold their grazing leases in the Grand Staircase/Escalante National Monument to the Grand Canyon Trust, who then retired the area from livestock grazing. All the folks trying to void the sale are politicians, not ranchers. For whom are they trying to save "the cowboy way of life?" For the cowboys, who seem to want to retire, or for themselves?  I have come to think that increasingly rural Western politicians like to see the cows out there and some poor rancher sweating in the sun because it's landscape art -- inspiring to them . . . even better than a painting of a Black man plowing behind a mule on the wall of some old segregationist southern senator.

3-10-2003. Debating Whether Oil Wells and Wilderness Mix. By Andrew C. Revkin. New York Times .  . . "wildlife had generally adapted well to oil drilling. But the wilderness — in the sense of wildness and sweep and emptiness — was another matter."

3-10-2003. Park protection bill widely supported. Measure aimed at banning snowmobiles in Yellowstone. Spokesman Review (requires free reg.). The bill would probably pass the House, but assuming it got past a Republican filibuster in the Senate, Bush would veto it.

3-9-2003. Snowmobilers Riding High In Yellowstone. Riders see end of the plan to ban them as a win over elitism. LA Times (requires free registration). By Julie Cart. I've always wondered how people riding around on $5000 machines can sneer at someone on snowshoes and say "damned elitist?"

3-9-2003. Forest Service struggling to stop illegal snowmobile use. By Michael Jamison. Missoulian.

3-7-2003. Wyoming Dept. of Game and Fish gets new director.

3-6-2003. Wolf-hating Utah State Senate kills bill to aid wolf victims. Deseret News. Probably just as well. if you look at record, when livestock owners are reimbursed by Defenders of Wildlife in Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming for wolf losses they usually complain anyway. The reimbursement is never enough. Reimbursement buys little good will. That's because wolves are not an economic issue. Wolves are a cultural issue.

3-6-2003. Two "Marauding" Wolves Killed. By Brent Israelsen. Salt Lake Tribune. Here is government cost effectiveness. The wolves killed 2 sheep worth a total of $400. How much the snowmobile and aircraft operation to kill them cost? The sheep owner will be reimbursed for his lost sheep.

3-6-2003. Forest Service Deficit Could Reach $1 Billion in Bad Wildfire Season. Outbreak Like Last Year's Is Possible, Agency Chief Says. Washington Post.
3-1-2003. New Forest policy benefits timber industry in name of reducing wildfires. By John Heilprin. Associated Press
The reality is the revised budget passed by the Republicans in February actually cuts the funding for fire fighting in what is expected to be another bad fire year due to continuing drought. Money for the much publicized forest thinning is being diverted to pay for the shortfall from last summer's fires. Congress did not make up the monetary fire deficit like they usually. No doubt in the smoke of next Summer's fires we will be seeing politicians blaming environmentalists for the fires. Their speeches are probably already written.

3-6-2003. Freudenthal signs wolf bills. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette. Turns out the bill even classifies wolves in Yellowstone Park as "trophy game." The bill is mostly just plain old shoot on sight predator outside Yellowstone and Grand Teton. The limited number of "trophy game" areas for wolves inside designated wilderness areas have the problem that wolves mostly don't live there. Most of the non-YNP wolves spend their time in the "wolves-are-predator areas."

3-5-2003. Judge Winmill rejects bid to kill all predators in large expanses of Idaho. News release. Western Watersheds Project. The decline of sage grouse is due to habitat destruction by cattle and increased range fires (part of which are due to the effects of cattle that have spread the seeds of the highly flammable cheat grass).

3-5-2003. Montana Power Company. Decline and fall of an industrial icon. By Dave Reese. Kalispell Daily Interlake. An icon? Yes, a symbol of a hundred years of abusing Montana's citizens, politics, and natural environment.

3-3-2003. [North Central] Idaho fund-raiser aims to give wolves the boot. Group told reintroductions hurt elk hunting, business. Dan Hansen Staff writer. Spokesman-Review. Same old stuff from Gillette. Elk are down in the area. Their decline had been predicted for a long time. I predicted in 1995 they would blame wolves even though the decline was apparent before the wolves were reintroduced. The wolves didn't make it to the Clearwater country until 1997.

3-3-2003. Mysterious tick-borne disease affects people from Livingston, MT and downstream on the Yellowstone River. Billings Gazette. By James Hagenbruber.

3-2-2003. Are wolves here to stay [in SE Idaho]? - Ranchers worry about impact. By Chris Hunt - Assistant Managing Editor. Idaho State Journal. There is room for wolves in SE Idaho if they stay out of the livestock (as many packs elsewhere have). The habitat between Pocatello and the Utah border is pretty marginal, however -- narrow mountain ranges separated by broad, sparsely populated, but agriculturally developed valleys (cropland and small farms and dairies).
3-2-2003. Wolf a victim of mistaken identity. By Chris Hunt. Idaho State Journal.

3-2-2003. Pete Zimowsky: What the heck is the [Idaho] Legislature doing? Idaho Statesman. Zimowsky writes a popular outdoors column for the Statesman. It is so painful to write about the Idaho Legislature and wildlife, I will leave it to Zimowsky. I will say that in Idaho, like Wyoming, the sportsmen are regularly shaken down by the ag interests.

3-1-2003. Park Service to begin spring plowing of Yellowstone Park roads. Snowmobiling begins shut down on March 2. AP. The first segment to close is Mammoth to Norris Jct. The last segments will close on March 9.

3-1-2003. Wyoming's new governor will sign wolf bill. AP. Wyoming's governor says he will sign the wolf management plan the legislature produced and has now sent to his desk. The plan says it will maintain 15 wolf pack in Wyoming, but many are skeptical whether it will even protect the packs of Yellowstone Park. There are some indications that even arch anti-conservationists like Secretary of Interior Gale Norton and her assistant secretary Craig Manson have doubts about the plan. There is a lot of unseen politics going in at the state and national level on this.

2-28-2003. Conservationists sue Forest Service for failure to raise grazing fees. Suit alleges grazing fees encourage ecological damage. Idaho Statesman.

2-28-2003. Study shows slight effects from wolves at Wyoming feed grounds. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette Wyoming Bureau. By Mike Stark. My view is that in scattering the feed ground elk a bit, the Wyoming wolves are the only thing in the state doing anything to prevent disease among Wyoming elk. Western Wyoming elk, kept like livestock at winter feedgrounds, are full of brucellosis and at risk of chronic wasting disease. Free ranging Wyoming elk have a lower brucellosis rate.

2-28-2002. Feds suspect foul play in wolf killing near Weston, ID. By Chris Hunt - Assistant Managing Editor. Idaho State Journal. The wolf was shot.
2-27-2003. Federal officials probe death of wild wolf near Weston. By Chris Hunt - Assistant Managing Editor. Idaho State Journal.
Weston is in extreme SE Idaho near the Utah border. It is about 50 miles south of Pocatello, Idaho on the west side of Cache Valley. There are a lot of mule deer in the country, although the deer herds have been depressed for the last 10 years. The mountains consist of narrow, long Great Basin type ranges, interspersed with broad valleys which are mostly devoted to low intensity agriculture.

2-28-2003. Duck Creek owners won't wait forever. By Scott McMillion. Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer.
2-27-2003. Congress cuts funding for critical private land acquisition near west boundary of YNP. By Scott McMillion. Bozeman Daily Chronicle.
This private land at Duck Creek is the land on the west side of US 191 near the US 287 junction with Montana 287, about 10 miles north of West Yellowstone.

2-27-2002. Wolf fans, get out wallets. Measure would let taxpayers help pay for livestock losses. By Jerry Spangler. Deseret News staff writer.
This headline misses the point, $30,000 doesn't require getting out a wallet, only picking up a couple pennies. What is interesting is the scientific poll showing Utahans support wolf recovery in the state.

2-27-2003. Idaho wolf recovery spurs debate. Jason Kauffman, The Arbiter. Boise State University.

2-26-2003. Montana horse owners urged to vaccinate against West Nile. By Kayley Mendenhall, Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer

2-25-2003. Temperature drops to -51 F in Yellowstone Park.

2-25-2003. Poachers kill 5 elk and leave them to rot near Bozeman. By Scott McMillion. Bozeman Daily Chronicle.

2-24-2003. Idaho letters critical of Ron Gillett. Idaho Statesman. See the 11th and 12th letters down.

2-24-2003. Bill would hold wolf managers legally accountable for actions. Silver City Daily-Times. By Darren Marcy. This is blatantly unconstitutional, but long typical of parts of rural New Mexico.

2-23-2003. Yellowstone's allure - Park appeals to visitors for different reasons. By Chris Hunt, Assistant Managing Editor. Idaho State Journal. This was the p. 1, headline story in my hometown newspaper Sunday.
Sidebar: "A Yellowstone Progress Report."

2-23-2003- Elk overpopulation, disease upset Rocky Mountain National Park's delicate balance. By Gary Gerhardt, Rocky Mountain News.

2-22-2003. Bush and Russian President Putin are soulmates in their heartless attacks on our environment. Opinion. Seattle Post-Intelligencer. By Lena Bizina and Paul Josephson.

2-21-2003. Amendments to Wyoming Senate Bill 97 approved avoid unconstitutionality. Billings Gazette. Note the most important Wyoming wolf bill is House Bill 229.

2-21-2003. Snowmobiler Says Riders Endure Hate. By Brent Israelsen. Salt Lake Tribune. Yeah, right.  "The average snowmobiler is white, male, in his early 40s and has a household income of $70,000." Having witnessed the beginnings of the Blue Ribbon Coalition in my home town, I know they were the ones who started using words like "Nazis," not their opponents.

2-21-2003. Snowmobiles in Yellowstone: Final winter-use plan unveiled. By Scott McMillion. Bozeman Chronicle.

2-20-2003. Wasting disease found in deer in Utah, New Mexico. By Reuters. ENN.
2-19-2003. Chronic Wasting Disease arrives in Utah mule deer!! By Skip Knowles. Salt Lake Tribune. This is horrible news, but wolves are likely one of the best ways to cull out the mad deer before they spread the errant prion scourge to other deer and elk.

2-19-2003. Oregon legislators try to limit protection for wolves. By Michael Milstein. Oregonian. Oregon law probably needs to be modified, but not the way the backers of these bills want -- gutted!

Earlier on this issue
2-14-2003. Four anti-wolf bills introduced in Oregon. Information on them.
I am increasingly shocked at the boldness of the anti-wildlife lobby. It looks to me like they want to destroy recovery of endangered and rare species at the state, federal and international level. They are not just gunning for wolves.
This is important information on their latest push (this time in Oregon). These bills go beyond destroying protection for wolves. So far wildlife supporters have been outmaneuvered in Montana and Wyoming. Don't expect someone else will do the hard work to kill these bills, if you care, it is your ethical obligation to make an effort in the Oregon legislature.
2-14-2003. Oregon Republicans attack their state's endangered species act. By Laurence Cruz. Salem Statesman-Journal.
 

2-19-2003. Colorado reservoirs could dip to 80% empty. Denver Water hopes residents will rise to occasion, conserve. By Jerd Smith And Kevin Vaughan, Rocky Mountain News. Colorado Governor Owens wants to fight the drought by building $10-billion worth of additional reservoirs and diversions. He should read this article -- the problem is not a lack of reservoirs; it is a lack of water to fill them.

2-19-2003. West Nile Virus Marches on. By Diedtra Henderson. Denver Post Science Writer. Surprise, rich biodiversity limits West Nile. Not surprising, the U.S. remains unprepared and most spraying for mosquitoes will be in mid-summer when it does little good. The money will come from overtaxed local governments while the President worries that Saddam might have bioweapons.

2-18-2003. Montana Dept. of Fish, Wildlife and Park drops plan to open Gallatin game preserve to hunting ... for now. By Scott McMillion Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer

2-18-2003. Opinion. Wolfing down management plans. Geoffrey O'Gara and Dan Whipple DUE WEST. Casper Star Tribune.

2-17-2003. Anti-wolf lobbyist said to dominate Utah wildlife politics. Salt Lake Tribune. By Skip Knowles. In Don Peay's favor, however, is his opposition to ATV hunters and support for reducing the amount of forage taken away from elk by public land cattle.

2-17-2003. Senator Craig secures federal reimbursement money for non-documented wolf-caused livestock losses. Sierra Times. Idaho's senior senator got an appropriation of $100,000 on top of Defenders' privately-funded livestock depredation reimbursements. There's absolutely no doubt wolves kill livestock and the matter is never discovered. Defenders does not pay for these. $100,000 is a remarkably small federal program, indicative of how minor wolf losses are. Nevertheless, this money is welcome.

Kerry White, is an off road vehicle activist who frequently writes letters to the Bozeman Chronicle blistering environmentalists. He provokes many letters in return. Recently he took on wolves. I have seen none supporting his position.

2-16-2003. Demonstrators protest against snowmobiles in Yellowstone. By Nick Gevock. Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer.

2-14-2003. Director of Utah's DWR makes statement on Department's position on wolves in Utah.
2-14-2003. Will anti-wolf special interests or science make decisions of Utah wolves? Editorial Salt Lake Tribune.

2-14-2003. Republican Congress tilts environmental policy toward development. By John Heilprin, Associated Press. This on the passage of a way late, and omnibus, appropriations bill for FY 2003.

2-13-2003. "Ruff life" by Jed Gottlieb. "Montana pushes to take control of its wolves." Missoula Independent. The fact that Rep. Fuchs and some of his constituents think Montana's economic problems are due to wolves gives some explanation why the Montana economy has long been stagnant and the population of this huge state has not even reached a million -- attitudes and beliefs that keep jobs scarce and low paying.

2-13-1002. Wyoming bighorn poacher gets 90 days in jail and big fine. AP.

2-13-2003. Wyoming House approves anti-wolf bills. AP. Billings Gazette. Looks like Wyoming state government is going to fight rather than really try to manage wolves.

2-12-2003. Alaska wolf killing on fast track. By Tim Mowry. Fairbanks News Miner. This is not as dramatic as it may seem. All wolves in a 500 square mile area will be killed, but consider that Idaho is 83,000 square miles and Alaska is 570,000 square miles.

2-11-2003. Groups urge Yellowstone Park to issue air quality warnings. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette.

2-10-2003. Utah House committee approves wolf relocation bill. By Paul Foy. AP. This is interesting and one of the first innovative steps by a Western state. The best wolf country in Utah is the Book Cliffs, but this remote area is so far to the SE that migration from Wyoming or Idaho seems unlikely.

2-10-2003. "Same data, same denial" (on YNP snowmobiles). Opinion of the Denver Post.

2-10-2003.  Don't make wolves into scapegoats for our problems. By Tom Skeele. Predator Conservation Alliance. Billings Gazette. I have long thought one reason why the rural West doesn't do better economically is that scapegoating in many forms is substituted for rational thought about economic change and opportunity.

2-10-2003. Kevin Richert (columnist): Idaho first hates, now wants to manage, state’s wolf packs. Idaho Statesman.

2-10-2003. Early warning system: Sensors will let drivers know elk are on road. By Jacob Goldstein. Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer.

2-10-2003. Wolf! Wolf! Can stockmen say fladry?  By Bob Mottram. KnoxNews.com. My earlier stories about fladry appear on my wolf updates page.

2-9-2003. Ron Gillett Responds to critical Idaho Statesman Editorial. "Enough is enough: Time to kick gray wolves out." Idaho Statesman. One thing I like about Gillett is the bold, clear way he states the anti-wolf position.
Here is the Statesman Editorial 12-26. Our View: Land piranha?

2-8-2003. OUR VIEW- Idaho State Journal: We're going to have to deal with wolves [in SE Idaho].

2-8-2003. Federal grazing fee dropped to its legal minimum. By Brodie Farquhar. Casper Star-Tribune staff writer. One justification for these low fees is that grazers on public land have to put up with people recreating there, predators, and other uses of the public lands near their livestock -- something to remember next time your hear public grazer complaints about predators or you are asked to pay for a picnic 3 times what a public lands grazer pays for a cow for an entire month.

2-8-2003. DEQ gives approval for Roundup coal plant. By Clair Johnson. Folks will remember that after National Park Service objections, a Bush political appointee blessed the plant. The political appointee was Craig Manson, the person making the high level decisions on wolves. The Park Service said the plant would reduce visibility in Yellowstone on the average of 39 days a year.

2-7-2003. Betrayal of trust on Bitterroot post-fire "salvage logging?" By Sherry Devlin. Missoulian.

2-7-2003. Another Enviro-Republican. Opinion. Bozeman Chronicle.

2-7-2003. Wolf bill clears Wyoming House Committee. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette.

2-7-2003. Stillwater Mine workers protest sale to Russians. By Jan Falstad. Billings Gazette. Some Montana politicians like to scapegoat environmentalists for problems in mining, but in fact mining interests dominated the state from the early days. At one time Montana was once essentially run by the "The Company," the Anaconda Corporation. Abuse of the environment and the citizens continues.

2-6-2003. Idaho may cut a special deal with Bush Administration to gain wolf management. Casper Star Tribune. Tired of the bluster and ranting of Montana and Wyoming state legislators over wolves, the Kempthorne Administration in Idaho may be close to a special rule allowing Idaho to gain management control over wolves before Montana and Wyoming. According to existing rules, the 3 states are tied together -- none can manage until all can mange.

2-6-2003. Salt Lake Tribune opinion on wolf management.

2-6-2003. Brucellosis test ordered for Stanko's cattle. AP.

2-6-2003. Wyoming State Senate gets first look at wolf bill. By Mead Gruver. In fact it's broader than a "wolf" bill.

2-6-2003. U.S. Senate approves  $1.3 million a year to protect livestock in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming from wolves. By Scott McMillion. Bozeman Daily Chronicle. "[The] amount is 85 times the average yearly value of "proven and probable" livestock losses to wolves in all the Rocky Mountain states"

2-5-2003. Trophy wolf boundary shrinks in Wyoming Wolf Management Bill. By Tom Morton Casper Star Star-Tribune capital bureau. The bill never protected a single wolf pack outside of Yellowstone Park, and now they shrunk the protected area (trophy game) boundary even more.

2-5-2003. Proposal for Utah Wolf Management Advances. By Brent Israelsen. Salt Lake Tribune. While the Montana and Wyoming legislatures are dominated by anti-wolf extremists, the Utah legislature is making a cautious move toward wolf management.
2-5-2003. Bid for wolf management plan advances. By Jerry Spangler. Deseret News staff writer. In this story it says ". . . federal authorities are poised to reduce wolf protections in the wake of dramatic population increases in Wyoming, Idaho and Montana." I called Ed Bangs, and he said they, the federal authorities, (US Fish and Wildlife Service), were not poised to do any such thing.

2-5-2003. Bush's forest-thinning budget too short to fool anyone. Opinion of the Denver Post. Remember how Bush was going to thin the forests to prevent the forest fires? After the fires in the summer of 2003, he'll probably do it again -- hold another news conference in a charred spot, blame the fires on lack of logging, promise money, and gear for still another encore.

2-5-2003. Five snowmobilers facing federal charges after YNP "demolition derby." By The Associated Press.

2-4-2003. BLM Plans To Give 66,000 Natural Gas Wells A Home On The Range In Wyoming And Montana. Protests Due February 18th! Wyoming Outdoor Council. This a new gas well for about 1 out of every 2 people that live in the area.

2-4-2003. CA Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Commission reigned in. By Don Thompson, Associated Press. This is not an obscure commission to off road vehicle interests. ATV and snowmobile industry folks have set up these commissions in most states. They use they them to siphon off motor fuel tax dollars from roads and highways, and from drivers who don't like tax supported ATVs, dirt bikes, and snowmobiles. Then they use the money to gouge ATV ruts through the backcountry.

2-4-2003. Drought takes toll on cattle, sheep numbers in Montana. By Becky Bohrer. AP. Down to 2.4 million cattle. How many did wolves kill, perhaps 10?

2-4-2003. Terror in the outdoors. Terror, terrorism and terrorists have become buzzwords used for gain in political maneuvering — the outdoors world is no exception. By Brian Lynn. Associate editor. ESPNOutdoors.com.  I wrote an article about this on Dec. 23. "Wolves as "wildlife terrorists." Think it's idiocy? Some people will believe it. Why?."

2-4-2003. Wolf control action may have to wait until next winter. State officials have little time to implement governor's wolf control plan this season. Juneau Empire State News. Alaska has a new slash and burn governor named Murkowski. He was a former U.S. Senator noted for his subservience to the oil companies. Now he's governor, out to kill the wolves, but not this winter. He appointed his daughter to fill out his U.S. Senate term.

2-4-2003. Update on the wolf plan in the Wyoming legislature. From the Wyoming Conservation Voters. Under Wyoming management this plan won't protect a single wolf outside Yellowstone National Park.

2-2-2003. Hungry elk vex ranchers. By Jeff Gearino. Casper Star Tribune Southwest Wyoming bureau. Wasn't it just last week that wolves had wiped out the elk, or was that in an alternative universe, or is it just that these people use contradictory arguments and assume no one will notice?

2-1-2003. Two west central Montana wolf packs to be destroyed after killing adult cattle. By Peggy O'Neill. Helena Independent Record. The area is 30-40 miles west of Helena. The Castlerock Pack, formerly named the Boulder Pack, was one of the first naturally established Montana Packs outside NW Montana. Attacks on adult cattle by wolves have been rare.

2-1-2003. 6 G.O.P. Senators Oppose Bush Alaska Drilling Plan. By Kartharine Q. Seelye. New York Times.
2-1-2003. Poll finds majority against ANWR drilling. Alaska governor calls Wilderness Society's questions loaded; group praises results. By Liz Ruskin. Anchorage Daily News.

1-31-2003. Internal NPS Report Concluded Snowmobile Ban Was Best for Parks. By Katharine Q.  Seelye. New York Times. The administration's decision to override science with politics is troubling beyond the matter of snowmobiles. Is a similar disregard for the findings typical of the administration's decision-making in the war on terror and on Iraq?

1-31-2003. A bill that threatens to sue the federal government over wolf management is headed to the full Senate in Wyoming. AP. Billings Gazette. This is unconstitutional like the Montana bill below.

1-31-2003. Montana wolf foes what state of call shots or else. AP. Billings Gazette. This is similar to the situation in Wyoming where a sudden move to call wolves "predators" has derailed delisting. For more info on the bill see article on 1-28 below "Anti-wolf bill hearings in Montana." Montana cannot legally unilaterally seize control of the wolf program.

1-30-2003. Tri-state trumpeter swan flock rejected for ESA protection. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette.

1-29-2003. Teton Valley, Idaho Residents complain about aerial gunning of coyotes on their property. Idaho Statesman. Some say Fish and Game Commissioner Roy Moulton is in another scrape with the law here.

1-29-2003. Utah bill would recognize wolf's protected status. Casper Star Tribune. The bill has tentative support from the Utah Wolf Forum.

1-28-2003. Knock Pombo Off His Post. A Rational Reaction To An Extreme Appointment. Opinion by former congressman Jim Jontz in TomPaine.com.

1-28-2003. Anti-wolf bill hearings in Montana. Immediate action needed. News Release. I'm not sure why Fuchs and Balyeat are pushing this issue. Some folks around Bozeman say the two are yet another species of canid -- the publicity hound.

1-28-2003. Wolf hearing in Cheyenne, WY tomorrow. News Release

1-28-2002. Irrational prejudice against wolves. Opinion Salt Lake Tribune. By Clark Monson.

1-28-2003. Meandering cattle cause a rift in small town of Bovill. Conflict revolves around poor fences and giant cowpies. Idaho Statesman. In much of the West, a property owner has no legal protection from cattle. You have to fence your property from cows or else. It's called "open range laws."

1-28-2003. GPSS collars installed on 3 Yellowstone wolves. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette. These expensive collars provide 24 hour tracking without a flight. After a period of time, they automatically drop off.

1-27-2003. Bush slates National Park Service jobs for privatization. By Julie Cart. LA Times. One of the first things a student of public administration learns is that bureaucrats have the power to make real decisions. They have discretion.
Replacing a public bureaucracy like the National Park Service with a private bureaucracies is not about cleaning toilets. It is about power to make public decisions. Bush's plan would move much of decision-making from public bureaucracies that can be influenced by the citizenry to private business bureaucracies that can't.
That's the point of his plan. The Administration will argue the change is about efficiency. It has nothing to do with efficiency. The Park Service's budget is so small in relation to the federal budget that efficiency does not matter. It is about how the national parks will be managed, and Bush wants them managed in a way the corporations, not the public, want.
Efficiency has meaning only in relation to goals. Bush's goals are not favorable to national parks.
This must be resisted. The measure is an affront to American democracy.

1-27-2003. For Environmentalists, Victories in the Courts .Groups Turn to Judicial System to Fight Efforts By Bush Administration to Relax Protections. Washington Post.

1-26-2003. Opinion. Wolf reintroduction has had positive economic impacts, too. By Ken Sinay. Bozeman Daily Chronicle. Written in response to the Montana Stockgrower's anti-wolf ads.
1-26-2003 Opinion. There is a [wolf] plan. By Norman A. Bishop. Bozeman Daily Chronicle. Written in response an earlier letter urging support of the wolf bill by anti-wolf state legislator, Dan Fuchs.

1-23-2003. Wyoming Game and Fish Commission stays with wolf timeline (and plan). By Jeff Gearino. Casper Star Tribune. Actually the changes are enough that Ed Bangs says it might pass muster.

1-23-2003. Four Corners power plants get temporary reprieve. By Gary Shioto. Arizona Sun Staff Reporter. The giant 4 corners power plant has been polluting the scenic canyon lands of New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, and Utah for 30 years now. With the Senate's refusal to revoke Bush's new easy pollution rules, this pollution will continue despite technology available to clean up the mess.

1-22-2003. Rewriting the Rules. Year-end Report 2002. The Bush Administration’s Assault on the Environment. By the Natural Resources Defense Council. What an incredible assault on the laws to protect us!

1-22-2003. Bush Opens Way for Counties and States to Claim Wilderness Roads. Policy could allow vehicles into vast areas of wilderness, some in national parks. Critics fear harm by miners, off-roaders and others. By Julie Cart, LA Times Staff Writer. More on Bush's giveaway of our national natural heritage to off road vehicle interests.

1-22-2003. Wyoming Game and Fish Commission reviews wolf plan. By Jeff Gearino Southwest Wyoming bureau. Looks like Wyoming Game and Fish is changing a bit due to the uproar over their initial plan. It's still a poor plan for the wolves, but will the feds approve it? Wyoming's new governor, no friend of the wolves, but not a rigid ideologue gets to appoint replacements to two of the Game and Fish Commissioners in March.

1-19-2003. Northern elk herd population drops. By Jeff Gearnino. Casper Star Tribune Southwest Wyoming bureau. There are some incorrect figures in this article. The elk population topped 19,000 on the northern Range, not 17,000. Bison numbers are not 2600, but closer to 4000. I do think the northern Range elk population has dropped, but the official figure is probably an undercount because much of the northern Range is snow free and brown colored like the elk.
1-16-2003.
Number of Yellowstone Northern Range elk appears to have declined. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette.
1-16-2003. Northern Yellowstone elk herd's numbers drop again. By Scott McMillion Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer. Elk calf numbers are down over Montana regardless whether wolves are present or not.

1-19-2003. Green GOP. By Nick Gevock Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer. This is another story about Republicans for Environmental Protection, a group of conservatives trying to take the party back from anti-nature extremists.
1-17-2003. Voices in the Wilderness. Question: How many Republican environmentalists can you fit into a van? Answer: All of them. By Jeremy Vesbach. Alibi.
This is an article about the group, Republicans for Environmental Protection, but also how the party of Theodore Roosevelt because the party of people like Tom DeLay, the grubby former pesticide peddler who now rules the House of Representatives with an iron fist.

1-18-2003. Alaskan Wilderness Eyed for Oil. Interior Department Weighs Expanded Drilling at National Petroleum Reserve. By Eric Pianin. Washington Post Staff Writer. News observers have noted that every Friday or Saturday the Bush Administration announces a new plan to harm our environment. Here is the latest. These are days when fewer people are watching or reading the news. I wonder what he'll try to sneak through the day he attacks Iraq?

1-18-2003. Senator Stevens' bill would block appeals on Alaska wilderness. By Joanna Markell. Juneau Empire. This language has been inserted in the 1000 page appropriations bill so that it won't get a separate vote, a remarkably undemocratic procedure.

1-17-2003. Wyotana: Home of the Second Home. By Anna Bahney. New York Times.

1-16-2003. Groups appeal Targhee National Forest land swap for Grand Targhee ski area. AP. The appeal is of a FS proposal to gain some swamp land and give up public land on the Teton Range for intensive, exclusive residential development. The swamp land used to be good grizzly habitat, but it has declined as such in recent years.

1-15-2003. Dept. of Interior overrules National Park Service and says giant coal power plant at Roundup, Montana won't pollute Yellowstone Park air. Billings Gazette. By Claire Johnson. This smacks of Bush Administration pro-energy company politics.

1-14-2003. Federal probe started in possible shooting of a wolf in Nebraska. By Robert Pore. The Independent.com

1-13-2003. Road outrage. How corporate greed and political corruption paved the way for the SUV explosion. By Arianna Huffington. Salon Magazine.

1-13-2003. Utah County could be prime wolf country. Hark the Herald. By Caleb Warnock. The Utah Wolf forum's URL is: www.brwcouncil.org/html/wolves.html

1-13-2003. Population drop of arctic grayling in Montana's prime grayling stream alarms biologist. Billings Gazette. AP

1-12-2003. Bridger-Teton National Forest plans to increase grazing of domestic sheep south of Jackson, WY. Billings Gazette. AP. This is really appalling. Domestic sheep have always been the death of bighorn, and bighorn in Wyoming are already in trouble with fragmentation of their habitat and acid rain. Worse, this is in the northern end of the lengthy Wyoming Range where conflict with other large wildlife species is most intense. I guess this is typical of what we can expect of the new Bush Forest Service.

1-12-2003. Wyoming bill would tax YNP visitors to support grizzly and wolf management. Denver Post. AP. Much of the Wyoming wolf controversy seems to be over the state not wanting to pay, but if Park visitors are to be taxed, the management of wolves should not be by the Wyoming Dept. of Agriculture. The money should not be just to track and kill wolves and it should be used to reduce conflicts by acquiring habitat, etc.

1-11-2003. U.S. Plan Could Ease Limits on Wetlands Development. By Douglas Jehl. New York Times. "The Bush administration opened the way today for a redefinition of federal rules that could remove obstacles to development on millions of acres of isolated wetlands historically protected under the Clean Water Act."
1-11-2003.  Criticism greets new Bush wetlands policy: Environmentalists say changes hit California particularly hard. By Glen Martin, SF Chronicle Environment Writer.

1-10-2003. Anti-environmental radical chosen by congressional Republicans to head powerful Resources Committee. By Mike Soraghan. Denver Post. Extremist Pombo to govern national parks, endangered species.
More 1-10-2003. Victor in battle for House lands panel. Property rights activist beats out more moderate Republicans. MSNBC. "Property rights activists" is what they want to be called, but check them out. They don't care about any property except rural property, and then only if they are defending someone who is making a nuisance with their property. . . "friends-of-bad-neighbors" would be a better description.

1-9-2003. Top Danish "Environmentalist" Rejects Fraud Charges. By Elinor Schang. Reuters. Nevertheless, Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen is thinking whether to investigate Lomborg's institute
1-9-2003. Panel of Scientists Assails Scholarship of Book Praised in Press -- '"The Skeptical Environmentalist." Washington Post.
1-10-2003. Here's a copy of the Danish "Decision regarding complaints against Bjorn Lomborg."

1-9-2003. New suit challenges air rules in parks. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette Wyoming Bureau.

1-8-2003. Governor Martz calls for immediate action to stop sheep-eating wolves. By Ron Tschida. Bozeman Chronicle Staff Writer. There is no doubt the Mill Creek Pack has been killing sheep off and on near Pray, and they will probably have to be killed, but Governor Martz's concern over the loss of less than 20 sheep, the cost of which will be reimbursed by Defenders, is one clue why Montana's economy is in the toilet and her popularity rating at 25% -- she has no sense of what's important. Wouldn't it be nice if she intervened publicly on behalf of an average Montanan who lost his or her job?

1-7-2003. No wolf bounty in Sublette County or Fremont, Country, WY. Stanko's request denied. Sublette Examiner. By Cat Urbigkit.

1-6-2003. Wyoming outfitters push "exclusive jurisdiction over wildlife act." Don't be fooled by the outfitters legal analysis. If you are not familiar with constitutional law, it might impress you, but it is a mismash of bad analysis fueled by extreme right wing ideology.

A good analysis of Western right wing extremism is found in the book, In God's Country: The Patriot Movement and the Pacific Northwest by David A. Neiwert. Washington State University Press. 1999.

1-6-2003. Poachers represent antithesis of our conservation efforts - Guest Editorial - By Pat Williams. Missoulian.
1-2-2003. NW Montana couple charged as major poachers. AP.

1-6-2003. Report on Public Lands' Oil, Gas May Spur Drilling Fight. By Faith Bremner. Gannett News Service. Salt Lake Tribune. Oil and gas drilling in the Rockies will cause more disruption and environmental degradation as experience by people than drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. It's interesting the media hasn't been quick to note this.,

1-5-2003. Price of coyote, fox, bobcat. lynx fur up stirring interest in trapping. Billings Gazette.

1-5-2003. Two contrasting opinions on snowmobiles in YNP. Billings Gazette. Given the 4th winter of scanty snow in YNP, I have been thinking maybe global warming will end the snowmobile controversy.

1-4-2003. Wolves in Banff's Bow Valley all but wiped out. CFCN Plus. The article says there are only about 60 wolves left in the vast assemblage of the Canadian Rocky Mountain National Parks. . . so much for those American wolf haters who say "if you want to see a wolf, you should go to Canada.

1-2-2003. Bush opens up backcountry trails to vehicles. Rule change enrages some, who say wilderness areas would be damaged. By Robert McClure. Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Off-road vehicle groups have been pushing to have abandoned tracks, cow trails, etc. declared as "highways" under this Civil War era law. My guess is the public won't pay attention until they start to  legally bulldoze roads into our national parks, designated wilderness areas, up steep mountainsides, etc., and the public will be powerless to stop them.
Related. U.S. Issues Rule Over Disputes on Federal Lands. By Katharine Q. Seelye. New York Times. Apparently this rule allows not only roads to be built into national parks, etc., but for the builder to claim ownership.

Note: Congress meant to repeal this law, and probably thought it had, when it passed the Federal Public Lands Policy Act (FLPMA) in 1976, but off-road groups and reactionary rural Utah counties were able to bootstrap this 1866 loophole back into existence during the Reagan Administration. Since then, it has been mostly a stalemate, due to off road vehicle industry contributions to Congress. Now Bush has given the off-road vehicle interests a total victory.

1-2-2003. Northwest braces itself for wolves. Wolves will reintroduce themselves to Oregon. by Rachel Odell. High Country News. Now in Bend, Oregon, Rachel Odell, who used to report for the Jackson Hole News on wolves and many other things, has written this piece for HCN.

1-2-2003. Fungus helps Yellowstone Park grass survive high ground temperatures. By Mike Stark. Billings Gazette.

1-2-2003. Opinion of the Idaho State Journal (Pocatello). Our View: In fits of denial, Idaho, Utah and others were left out of management plans; they should try to get involved.

1-2-2003. Bozeman Chronicle. LTE. New wolf issues aren't new; they're old as the hills. By Norman A. Bishop. Bishop was for many years Yellowstone's natural resources interpreter. Now retired from that career, he is the International Wolf Center field representative for the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem.

1-1-2003. Nine states sue Bush Administration's new dirty air rules. Washington Post. By Eric Pianin
1-1-2003. Administration weakens 'Dolphin Safe' tuna fish rules. Washington Post.

1-1-2003. Effects of Global Warming on plants and animals grow. ABC News. AP
 


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