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The Weekly News Source for Wyoming's Ranchers, Farmers and AgriBusiness Community

Share the wolf

by Wyoming Livestock Roundup

“Grey wolves should be recovered in multiple, connected populations throughout the United States.” Or so says a petition filed by the Tucson, Ariz.-based Center for Biological Diversity against Department of the Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 
My first thought is, “Why do we need more wolves? We already have way more then we all need.” But then, after a second or two, I think, “Why shouldn’t everyone else have them, too?”
Misery likes company, and I can think of a few states, like California or New York, that deserve a few wolves. Wolves and San Francisco, Calif. would really go together – we’ve seen all kinds of human wildlife there, how about some real wildlife? Why don’t we fence some wolves in along the U.S./Mexico border and make sure they stay hungry? How many people would cross into the United State then? But, there wouldn’t be many going back into Mexico, either.
The Center’s petition asks for a national recovery plan for the grey wolf under the Endangered Species Act that would establish wolf populations in “suitable habitat” in the Pacific Northwest, California, the Great Basin, southern Rocky Mountains, Great Plains and New England. Well, why stop there? Why not in the Great Smokey Mountains and other parts of the Southeast U.S., which are well-timbered, as well as parts of Florida and New York?
Just think of all the management and population control the wolves could have in the wild horse areas of Nevada, or in the feral pig areas of the southern states. Hawaii is having problems with feral pigs in some parks – let’s dump some wolves off there, too.    
The Center’s spokesman says, “It’s time to develop a national recovery plan to facilitate true recovery of the grey wolf. The existing recovery plans for wolves in the northern Rocky Mountains and upper Midwest are out-of-date and apply to a small fraction of the wolf’s historic range.” He also says, “Science teaches us that we need far more wolves that range across a much wider swath of the continent than the current minimalistic approach.”
My first thought is that I agree with him 100 percent, but in reality I don’t wish the wolf on anyone. However, it would be good to have them in areas back East, where there’s not much livestock, to let people see the damage they really do. They would realize that where there are wolves, there is almost single-species management. Wolves don’t have to be kept in the West, where most people only want to see them while on vacation. Those people need to see up-front the damage they do to pets, wildlife and livestock.
Also in the past week the Center filed a suit against the BLM and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to stop El Paso Corp. from building its natural gas pipeline from Wyoming to Oregon. They say it would harm many species of fish located in the numerous rivers the pipeline would cross. It will be interesting to see how that plays out, considering El Paso’s recent actions.   

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