Oct 31

MT: Wildlife officials kill 9 wolves in southwest Montana

Wildlife officials kill 9 wolves in southwest Montana

By BECKY BOHRER
Associated Press

Federal wildlife managers killed nine wolves in just over a month for attacking or killing livestock in southwest Montana, including one that a state wolf official says was shot by mistake.

A wolf advocate says she’s concerned about the recent kills and believes the state should focus more efforts on trying to control wolves without killing them. But a cattle industry official said the effectiveness of nonlethal measures is debatable and notes the cost to ranchers. “How would you feel if every week I went up and took $500 to $600 from your billfold?” asked Steve Pilcher, executive vice president of the Montana Stockgrowers Association.

The wolves were killed between Labor Day and the middle of October on the orders of state wildlife officials, who this year assumed primary control of wolf management in Montana from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Wolves were blamed for seriously injuring two dogs that were guarding sheep in the Gravelly Mountains and for killing several cattle in southwestern Montana. The wolves killed were members of the Freezeout pack and an apparently new group, west of Jackson, said Carolyn Sime, the state’s wolf program coordinator.

Sime said the response was aggressive but warranted.

“I always regret when livestock are attacked by wolves, and I always regret when difficult decisions have to be made,” she said Monday. “I wish it were easy, but it’s not.”

Sime, however, also acknowledged that mistakes were made: Two of the wolves killed were off the grazing allotment where run-ins had been confirmed and where wildlife officials had been directed initially to focus their attention, and a radio-collared female in the Freezeout pack, not believed to have been involved in killing livestock, was shot. The death of the female means the group no longer counts as a breeding pair, Sime said. This is important because breeding pairs are a key measure of wolf recovery.

Breeding pairs are defined as an adult male, an adult female and two pups, and a minimum of 30 breeding pairs are required in the Northern Rockies states of Idaho, Montana and Wyoming as a condition for the wolves’ removal from Endangered Species Act protection. That standard has been met the past several years, and at the end of 2004, Fish and Wildlife said 66 packs in the region met the definition of a breeding pair.

Montana has committed to having at least 15 breeding pairs to give it greater leeway in deciding whether to use lethal control, Sime said, and had that many at the end of last year. Sime didn’t know how many breeding pairs there were now but said being near the cutoff of 15 would dictate a more conservative approach moving forward.

Fish and Wildlife, in a midyear estimate, put the number of wolves in Montana at 166, the smallest of the three states. More than 900 wolves were estimated to roam the Northern Rockies. Gray wolves were first reintroduced to the region in 1995.

Ed Bangs, Fish and Wildlife’s wolf recovery coordinator in Helena, said he isn’t concerned with the number of wolves that have been ordered killed. He said September tends to be the month with the most depredations because bigger pups need more food and wild game can be tough to come by.

Both he and Sime said their sense is that confirmed livestock losses because of wolves are down from last year, though statistics weren’t available. Sime said the perceived decline could be due to there being fewer packs in parts of southern Montana where there have been conflicts between livestock and wolves, such as the Madison and Paradise valleys, and fewer wolves in Yellowstone. She said ranchers are also now more aware of wolves in their area, and vigilant.

Six wolves have been killed legally in Montana under federal rules giving ranchers or others more leeway in protecting livestock from predatory wolves, Sime said.

Suzanne Asha Stone, the Northern Rockies representative for Defenders of Wildlife, gives the state high marks overall in managing wolves. But she’d like to see a greater emphasis on nonlethal control measures and for the state to continue encouraging landowners to adapt to living with wolves.

“There needs to be emphasis on protecting wolves, not killing them every time they get into trouble,” she said.

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Oct 31

The truth about the gray wolf

The truth about the gray wolf

RON SEELY

ISLE ROYALE – From an old and sagging log cabin on this island in the cold reaches of Lake Superior, Rolf Peterson and dozens of other biologists have made history and put to rest many of the persistent and wrongheaded myths about the island’s most famous resident: the gray wolf.

Peterson is a wildlife biologist who is the latest researcher working on what has become the world’s longest predator- prey study. Since 1970, Peterson has studied the relationship between wolves and moose on Isle Royale. He was just 9 years old when the research started in 1959. Eisenhower was president and Ford had just released the Edsel.

The long years of study have provided not only a wealth of information about the intricate connections between these two majestic mammals but also considerable insight into the relationship of the endangered gray wolf to the landscape in other northern states, including Wisconsin.

Peterson’s research, in fact, is proving a crucial tool for wildlife ecologists in Wisconsin as they fight an intensifying battle against misinformation about the timber wolf. Since the early 1970s, when wolves had nearly disappeared from the state, Wisconsin’s wolf population has rebounded to about 450 animals.

Adrian Wydeven, the wildlife ecologist who heads the state’s wolf program, said the Isle Royale studies have provided considerable information for the Wisconsin recovery effort. Most important, he said, have been accurate descriptions of wolf behavior to counter the long-held myths about wolves that are often perpetuated by those who are against the return of the predator to the state’s forests.

“Isle Royale,” said Wydeven, “represents the beginning of modern wolf research. The length of the study alone is valuable. We’ve gotten a lot of useful information and I think those studies are becoming even more important.”

To Wydeven, the studies are about truth-telling in the face of heightened criticism of wolves in Wisconsin. He cited, for example, a recent article in the Ashland newspaper titled “Wolves Threaten Our Northland Economy” that said wolves kill too many deer and frighten people.

On Isle Royale, science is bringing the wolf out of the shadows of lore and history. It is an ideal laboratory because of its insular population of wolves and moose. Moose swam to the island, perhaps in the early 1900s. Wolves crossed to the island on frozen Lake Superior in the late 1940s.

Years of patient tracking and observation have shown that, while it certainly is a deadly efficient predator, the gray wolf is an integral part of a natural web that is far more complicated than was once believed.

Peterson and other Isle Royale researchers have found that seeing the wolf’s role clearly, unclouded by myth, can help us better understand a landscape in its entirety, from the ups and downs of its animal residents to the fate of a cedar swamp.

This is the view that has coalesced from the cluttered environs of the famed Bangsund Cabin on the rocky shore of Isle Royale’s Rock Harbor. In 1970, Peterson, now a professor of wildlife ecology at Michigan Technological University but then a graduate student, first came to the cabin. He brought his wife, Candy, and together they started studying the bones of moose to better understand the secrets of wolf predation.

Inside the cabin is a pleasant jumble of old and comfortable chairs, wooden cabinets with doors askew, a table covered by a map of the island, a small kitchen stocked with battered pots and pans. Photos and clippings and headlines line the walls, a faded record of the many summers the Petersons have spent here. They watched their two boys grow up during all those seasons of research.

Candy, hosting guests one recent fall afternoon, served coffee from a tin pot atop the wood stove along with fresh- baked cinnamon bread. She recalled those early days, the joy of the wild island and of being close to the wolves.

“I remember feeling that they were all around us,” Candy said. “Being here in the cabin allows the wolves to live right here near us. We can be a part of it all . . . It’s just an absolute privilege to be here.”

Outside, the yard of the cabin is littered with moose bones – vertebrae and ribs and leg bones and backbones. They are from years of collecting. Many are labeled. A shed behind the cabin is filled from floor to ceiling and from wall to wall with moose skulls and antlers, interlocked in a puzzle of white bone. All of the bones tell a story; they are a calcified history of moose on Isle Royale.

“Ecology is actually a historical science,” Peterson said as he displayed several of the skulls he’s collected over the years. “That isn’t really appreciated. What we’re trying to do is understand the past.”

What are the lessons of history and bone? One of the most important findings, Peterson said, is that wolves are not indiscriminate killers. Instead, a study of the bones and teeth from wolf kills showed that the wolves prey primarily on the very old moose as well as on the sick and the young calves – these, after all, are the moose that are easiest to bring down. As Peterson pointed out in his 1995 book, “The Wolves of Isle Royale,” old moose were the wolves’ “bread and butter,” comprising about 85 percent of their diet.

There is more to this, studies on Isle Royale and elsewhere show, than meets the eye. By culling the weak and the sick from the moose herd, Peterson said, the wolves are actually serving as agents of positive change, assuring that the prey population remains healthy over future generations because only the strong and robust moose survive to rear young. As Darwin explained, nature selects for those characteristics that give a species its best shot at surviving and prospering.

“The wolf,” Peterson explained, “is the agent of selection.”

This important phenomenon happens in Wisconsin, too, though wolves are not nearly as major a predator on deer as people are. Wolves kill between 8,000 and 9,000 deer a year, according to Wydeven. People kill five times as many with their cars. Hunters kill more than 300,000 deer each year.

But Peterson said wolves, even in a place such as Wisconsin, can exert a positive influence on the overall health of a prey population. “Wolves,” Peterson said, “are probably having an effect on deer all across the upper Midwest.”

Peterson even speculated that wolves could play a role in stemming the spread of chronic wasting disease because of the same process of selection.

The long study of the relationship between wolves and moose on Isle Royale provided numerous surprises along the way, according to Peterson.

One of those involved the impact of wolf numbers on the health of the forest. It’s a simple thing, really, but something that shows the truth of nature being dependent on myriad connections.

Data through the decades of the 1960s and 1970s showed that wolves were the major force keeping moose in check. During that same time, there was a major regrowth of the forest on the island, especially balsam.

Similarly, in the 1990s, when moose numbers climbed again, the growth of woody vegetation was suppressed. The connection, once the changes in the forest were documented, was easy to make. Moose eat young trees. Wolves eat moose. More moose mean fewer trees while fewer moose mean more forest growth.

“Growth rates of balsam fir in the forest understory,” Peterson wrote in his book, “cycled in synchrony with the wolf population. When wolf numbers were high, the forest grew. What an impressive achievement for a couple of dozen wolves that were just doing what comes naturally!”

Such a finding is of special interest to Wisconsin biologists these days, according to Wydeven. Studies by researchers such as the UW-Madison’s Don Waller have shown that deer are decimating the understory of Wisconsin’s northern forests, especially cedar swamps. So studies are under way, Wydeven said, to understand the relationship between wolf predation and plant growth in Wisconsin’s forests.

If Isle Royale is any indication, the future of the cedar in northern Wisconsin could be dependent on the success of the wolf as a predator.

The wolves and the moose on Isle Royale have communicated myriad other secrets about our world over the years. In his book, for example, Peterson told the story of how the moose on the island even gave us important and unexpected information about carbon dioxide and climate change.

Back in 1989, Peterson said, when scientists were using the Oxford University’s accelerator mass spectrometer to date the Shroud of Turin, the next fellow in line to use the instrument was a geochemist named Jeffrey Bada. He carried small vials of gaseous extracts from Isle Royale moose teeth.

Bada, Peterson continued, found that moose teeth store carbon. More extensive study of 75 years worth of Isle Royale moose teeth, Peterson said, showed a steady increase in carbon, further proof of an inexorable rise in carbon dioxide due to worldwide combustion of fossil fuels.

Such unexpected findings lead Peterson to speculate about what mysteries could be solved in the future by the data that continue to be collected on the island.

What secrets, Peterson wondered, remain locked in the bones of Isle Royale?

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Oct 29

OR: Wolf management plan comment period extended

Wolf management plan comment period extended

SALEM, Ore. (AP)  At the request of ranchers, the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission has extended the public comment period for revisions to a proposed wolf management plan.

The extension to Nov. 30 will delay a decision on the proposed plan until Dec. 1.

The commission granted the extension after the Union County Cattlemen, the Oregon Cattlemen’s Association and the Union County Board of Commissioners made formal requests.

Oregon law provides for an extension of comment on intended rulemaking at the request of interested parties.

The state wildlife commission decided last month to adopt a new rule to amend the Oregon Wolf Conservation and Management Plan after three proposed changes by the Legislature were not acted on by lawmakers during their 2005 session.

Those changes are the only portion of the plan subject to public comment. They would have:

” Designated the wolf as a special status mammal.

” Created a state-funded compensation program for livestock killed by wolves.

” Allowed livestock owners without a permit to kill wolves caught in the act of killing livestock.

If those proposed amendments are adopted by the commission, the rest of the plan will remain unchanged.

The commission approved the overall Oregon wolf plan in February after a comprehensive public involvement effort involving a citizen committee that met for more than a year to write a draft plan and a four-month public comment period.

The official public comment period for rulemaking began Oct. 1. Written comments on the revisions and draft rules must be submitted no later than close of business Nov. 30.

___

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Oct 28

MT: FWP Offers Wolf Information On The FWP Website

FWP Offers Wolf Information On The FWP Website

A new offering on Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks web site is designed to help hunters and others in the outdoors learn more about the states wolf population.

The new web site offers details on the state-led wolf program, information on wolf livestock interactions; a report on wolf-ungulate studies in Montana; information on what to do if you encounter a wolf, and more. To get there, visit the the FWP web site at fwp.mt.gov and use the seach words “Wolf Management News.” To report a wolf sighting click on Report Wolves under Hot Topics.

The web pages put important information on wolves at the publics fingertips. Well also provide periodic updates, especially as we gain reports of wolf sightings by hunters and others, said Carolyn Sime, who coordinates the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks wolf conservation and management program from Helena.

A new “Wolves and Big Game” information card to help hunters identify and report wolves will be available from FWP offices and most licenses providers this week.

Sime said FWP is working to make information readily available to the public about all facets of the new state wolf program.

Wolves in northern Montana are currently managed as “endangered” and wolves in southern Montana are managed as “experimental, non-essential.” FWPs wolf program works to conserve and actively manage a recovered wolf population. Hunting will be prohibited until the wolf is no longer protected under the Endangered Species Act.

To report a dead wolf or possible illegal activity, call 1-800-TIP-MONT, or contact the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service at 307-261-6365.

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Oct 28

WY: Wolf delisting clash pits Wyoming against feds

Wolf delisting clash pits Wyoming against feds

By Gil Brady

By all estimates, the wolf is back in the Greater Yellowstone Area of Montana, Idaho and Wyoming. Back with a vengence, some say.

In the 31 years since its addition to the Endangered Species List, and in the decade since being reintroduced in the GYA, Canadian gray wolves have flourished. According to conservationists, wildlife management officials, and Wyoming’s own Game & Fish Commission’s petition to delist wolves filed this past June, they now number between 835 and 900 in Wyoming, Montana and Idaho.

In 2003, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service announced that these numbers, coupled with the 30 breeding pairs in the GYA, warranted delisting the wolf according to federal guidelines.

Untangling the politics of wolf delisting, however, can be screwier than herding cats at a rodeo with a box of lit M-80s. Farmers, ranchers, landowners, big game outfitters and state officials all report wolves as being an increasing threat to wildlife, livestock and domestic pets. To this end, wolf preservation groups have formed compensation funds to payoff ranchers and property owners for livestock lost to wolves.

And a glance at the USFW’s weekly wolf depredation blotter, penned by canis lupus recovery guru Ed Bangs, shows why. “On the 12th, [Montana Wildlife Service] confirmed that a calf was killed by the Freezout pack,” Bangs writes in the latest Gray Wolf Recovery Status Reports, adding, “On the 15th, MT WS specialist Bart Smith confirmed 2 heifers were attacked by wolves in the Big Hole Valley on a private ranch.”

Delisting, says Fish & Wildlife, is contingent on Montana, Idaho and Wyoming’s wolf management plans ensuring adequate wolf populations before control can be returned to the states. “As has always been our goal,” Bangs said in a phone interview, referring to state rule over native wildlife. Managing wolves to the Fish & Wildlife’s satisfaction, however, is where the Cowboy State’s problem lies, for Montana and Idaho’s post-delisting wolf management plans have already been approved.

For some parties in those states, it seems that Wyoming wants to be the Cowboy State more than a cooperative, good ol’ boy neighbor.

Fish & Wildlife officials rejected Wyoming’s wolf plan, which would have left wolves unprotected once they strayed beyond national parks and protected wilderness areas.

Wolf lovers, such as Defenders of Wildlife, fear that this unprotected status will inspire overzealous hunters, ranchers and property owners to resume their longmissed blood sport of blasting nomadic wolves into decorative wall-sized trophies. “Predatory animal status under Wyoming law would allow unlimited killing and no professional management by state and [federal agencies],” Bangs said Monday. Wyoming, so USFW says, also failed to meet the federal requirements to ensure that at least 15 packs would remain intact and omitted an acceptable definition of what a wolf pack is.

Wyoming’s failure to devise a plan to the fed’s liking is rankling its neighbors energizing pro outfitter, property rights, and fans of hooks and bullets to lobby wildlife agencies in Montana and Idaho for wolf delisting, regardless of Wyoming’s wolf management proposal.

Never a state to be bossed around, Wyoming has filed an appeal with Denver’s 10th Circuit Court, which might be why Fish & Wildlife announced this month it would review Wyoming’s petition to take the gray wolf off the endangered species list. However, in a recent AP report, Bangs cautioned delisting supporters to not “read any more into this than that.”

He also told the Planet, “We are looking over their 80-page petition.”

But the decision to delist wolves in Wyoming, Bangs explained, could take until next June 28, a year to the day when the petition was first filed.

All of this dickering motivated at least one Montana rancher to take legal matters into his own hands. Robert Fanning, Jr., founder of the 3,700-member Friends of the Northern Yellowstone Elk Herd, has charged federal officials with various acts of disingenuousness.

“The whole idea of wolf reintroduction is a fraud,” Fanning said.

The reintroduction of the gray wolf, canis lupus, on top of the smaller more “reclusive” and indigenous timber wolf is, to Fanning, an intellectual effrontery. As he explains, the Canadian gray wolf is a larger, more predatory wolf that hunts in packs, unlike its natural predecessor, the timber wolf, which hunts in pairs. As a result, the gray wolf is wreaking havoc and destroying wild game populations all over his state.

“I met with [U.S. Circuit Court] Judge Johnson,” Fanning said, regarding Wyoming’s legal challenges to federal authority. “My question to Judge Johnson with my petition to delist was: ‘If all three states are held hostage to compliance with the administrative law to file a plan, then why can not the State of Wyoming piggyback on [my] petition to delist and avoid the 15 month wait? Judge Johnson said, ‘I see no reason why not.’ ”

In other words, wolves may be back, but they’re not out of the woods quite yet.

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Oct 27

Wolf trackers wanted

Wolf trackers wanted

The Daily Press

The Wisconsin wolf program is looking for a few good trackers. People interested in volunteering to locate timber wolves and other forest carnivores in the coming year and help keep count on the elusive animals can learn how to track wolves during a series of upcoming training sessions.

In Wisconsin wolves are a protected wild animal under state law and an endangered species under federal law.

Volunteer trackers are assigned survey blocks in forest portions of northern and central Wisconsin, and are asked to conduct three or more surveys in their assigned block each winter. Data they gather can be compiled with those of other volunteers to aid Department of Natural Resources biologists in evaluating wolf populations.

A Wolf and Carnivore Tracker Training sessions is set for Nov. 5 at the Sigurd Olson Environmental Institute, Ashland, (715) 682-1699.

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Oct 27

WY: Wolf relocations fail

Wolf relocations fail

by Cat Urbigkit

Although federal wildlife officials tend to try non-lethal techniques to control rare or endangered predators like grizzly bears and gray wolves, some of those techniques are less successful than others.

For example, wolf translocations are no longer practiced in Idaho or Wyoming, according to Mike Jimenez of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

A research paper examining the effectiveness of wolf translocations to reduce livestock conflicts in the Northwestern United States was recently published in the journal Conservation Biology. The paper looked at the results of incidents involving 88 wolf translocations away from livestock conflicts. More than one-quarter of the wolves preyed on livestock again.

Most translocated wolves never established or joined a pack and had high mortality rates, with government removal the primary source of mortality.

In an interview about the research paper, Jimenez said that translocating wolves is “very expensive and time-consuming, but the success rate is not great.”

Translocated wolves show strong homing tendencies, and even if they didn’t make it back to their place of capture, they still moved back in that direction.

The research paper recommended that managers translocating wolves consider soft releasing wolves when possible to reduce homing behavior and increase release-site fidelity. Soft releases involve the temporary holding of the animals onsite in pens. In contrast, hard releases are immediate releases. When it comes to hard releases, Jimenez said, “They take off like rockets … they try to go home and can put on some pretty big distances.”

When the federal government undertook the wolf reintroduction program 10 years ago, wolves were hard released in Central Idaho, while wolf packs were held in pens in Yellowstone National Park for several months before being released.

“There’s no real place to stick them,” he said.

“Translocating individual wolves doesn’t give you much bang for your buck,” Jimenez said.

Non-lethal control isn’t effective in western Wyoming, according to FWS reports. Although non-lethal control is routinely considered, it often is not applicable in many areas in Wyoming because:

” Specific wolf packs chronically killed livestock year after year;

” Unpredictable travel patterns and movements by wolves; and

” Very large wolf home ranges that covered vast areas where cattle grazed on public grazing allotments.

Nine of 10 wolf packs in Wyoming outside of Yellowstone National Park were involved in at least one livestock depredation in 2004, and total depredations increased 42 percent from the year before. In most cases, federal control efforts help resolve the problem, but when that fails, FWS may issue shoot-on-site permits. Last year, six such permits were issued in Wyoming, with livestock owners killing two wolves on their private property.

Last week, FWS issued a shoot-on-site permit to a Big Piney-area rancher, allowing him to kill two wolves on his private property. No action has been taken on the permit. FWS issued the permit after a pack of wolves in the Cottonwood Creek area killed at least six head of cattle this year. USDA Wildlife Services personnel have repeatedly attempted to kill the wolves, but haven’t been successful. FWS granted Wildlife Services permission to kill up to three wolves. Jimenez said that reports indicate there are three adult wolves and three or four pups in the pack. The pups would weigh at least 60-70 pounds at this time of year.

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Oct 27

WI: Subpermit to restore wolf-control methods

Subpermit to restore wolf-control methods

By Kevin Naze
Press-Gazette correspondent

Wolf team leaders from Wisconsin and Michigan are hoping to have a new permit soon after the cancellation of one that had given them lethal control authority and the ability to trap and relocate problem wolves.

DNR wolf biologist Adrian Wydeven of Park Falls said there have been no reported livestock losses to wolves since a federal district court pulled the permit Sept. 13.

There was a yellow lab attacked near Marengo that we might have attempted to trap recently, but no livestock losses, Wydeven said. When we first heard of the suit, (we were) trapping on six or seven farms.

In August, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service was sued by Defenders of Wildlife, Humane Society of the United States and 10 other environmental groups because the service did not hold a public comment period before issuing Wisconsin a subpermit on April 1. The subpermit had allowed the DNR and its agent, the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Wildlife Services, to euthanize up to 34 wolves captured at depredation sites.

The lethal control authority was on the same permit on which we had authority for other research and monitoring activity, thus we lost all authority to trap, tranquilize, collar and relocate wolves, Wydeven said. So far, 29 wolves had been captured and euthanized at depredation sites.

Nearly two dozen Wisconsin farms have had verified depredation incidents this year, totaling close to 40 incidents. A number of other farmers have reported wolves eyeing herds.

Wolves from the Dakotas to Maine had been downlisted from endangered to threatened on April 1, 2003. That allowed states authority for lethal control activities without the need for a permit. Earlier this year, a federal court determined that the downlisting actions were not legal, and wolves in Wisconsin and other locations returned to endangered status.

In February, Wisconsin had to apply for a special permit to conduct lethal control activities. When issued as a regular permit, these actions require a public comment period and environmental assessment by USFWS. But if issued as a subpermit, organizations closely supervised by USFWS and actions considered noncontroversial, does not require public comments, Wydeven said.

Previous authorization to the DNR for radio-collaring, immobilizing and moving problem wolves prior to 2003 were granted by subpermit, he said. Therefore, it was decided (by DNR and USFWS) that we should get a subpermit so it would be ready to go by calving/grazing season.

Wydeven said the DNR applied for a new permit in September. It went through a 30-day comment period that ended Oct. 14. The permit request and statement in support were sent to USFWS, along with a request to resume a delisting process for Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesota as soon as possible.

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Oct 26

ID: Sundles cries Wolf, then poisons it

Sundles cries Wolf, then poisons it

BY NICHOLAS COLLIAS

Ah, the Internet: where science and pseudo-science are presented side-by-side as equals, and nobody needs a by-line or a title to expound upon their cockeyed theories.

Of course, there are exceptions to the anonymity–like Tim Sundles.

This central Idaho-based zealot, a national icon for the anti-wolf movement, was charged last week with placing bait to kill wolves and illegally using pesticide on Forest Service land. His alleged weapon of choice: the tainted meatball, made famous by… well, by Sundles, who has featured instructions for several years on his Web site (www.natureswolves.com) on how to poison wolves with toxic meat-treats.

The site also features numerous dramatic photos and fantastical tales about the havoc wreaked upon humans, livestock and big game by bloodthirsty wolves, all in the name of “disproving a few myths about wolves, such as: Wolves only kill the sick and the weak; Wolves eat whatever they kill with little or no waste; Wolves don’t sport kill.”

Sundles has openly admitted in local and national media to killing several wolves since their 1995 reintroduction to Idaho, and he claimed after his arrest that he was about to embark on a statewide tour to share the message of lupicide with the masses.

If convicted, he could face a year in jail and approximately $200,000 in fines.

In the meantime, his Web site is still up and running, and contains–surprise!–a link to the Tim Sundles Legal Defense fund.

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Oct 25

ID: MAN ACCUSED OF POISONING WOLF APPEARS IN FEDERAL COURT

MAN ACCUSED OF POISONING WOLF APPEARS IN FEDERAL COURT

The Salmon man accused of poisoning the threatened gray wolf made a federal court appearance today.

Timothy Sundles pleaded not guilty to the misdemeanor charges.

Sundles faces a maximum penalty of six months in prison and a 100-thousand dollar fine.

Prosecutors say Sundles put pesticides in meatballs and placed the food near Wagonhammer Creek.

Sundles’ trial is set for December sixth.

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