Monday, July 21, 2014

WI Wolf Hunt 'Advisory' Committee To Meet Tuesday

The Wisconsin Wolf Advisory Committee - - now heavily-weighted in favor of wolf hunting after an official DNR purge of opponents from an earlier, more broadlu-representative stakeholder's group - - will meet in Wausau tomorrow to discuss state wolf hunting policy which now allows the use of dogs.

Here is the meeting information from a DNR website:
July 22
9 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Howard Johnson Hotel
2101 North Mountain Rd.
DNR Wolf Advisory CommitteeDavid MacFarlandCommittee will continue wolf management plan discussions.

Wolf activist Rachel Tilseth has some observations for a guest op-ed:
In my dozen or so years as a volunteer WI DNR Winter Wolf Tracker, I learned a great deal about wolves. Wolves are territorial predators, social animals living within family packs, that depend on each other for survival. Wolves have a beneficial effect on ecosystems as a keystone predator.  Wolves have been off the endangered species list now for over two years, and are being managed by the state of Wisconsin. 

Wisconsin is only managing wild wolves as a trophy game animal. Managing the wolf only as a trophy, especially using dogs to hunt them, is an outright waste of natural resources, money, and time previously spent on recovery. 

I cite the loss of 23 hound hunting dogs during 2013 bear-hunting training season with reimbursement up to $2,500 per dog. 

On July 10, 2014, a Judge ruled that dogs could be trained on wolves and this is concerning. Here is why.  Based on what I've learned about wolves during tracking:

Training dogs to chase wolves during breeding season in January and February will result in a blood bath. While tracking wolves during the winter breeding season I found wolf scent marking every tenth of a mile, for about a mile. There were multiple wolf tracks on the edge of the packs range. I found obvious signs of a female wolf in estrous near these scent markings. I'm certain if a wolf hound handler sends dogs to chase wolves during breeding season it will end in a blood bath because wolves are very protective of their mates at that time. 

These fringe hunters put both wild wolves and hunting dogs in known situations that cause conflict. Should citizens be paying money for this reckless behavior?

Over the next several months the Wolf Advisory Committee, which Wisconsin DNR Secretary Cathy Stepp admitted is stacked with pro-hunter interests) will be writing training rules for dogs to chase wolves. 

Stepp has limited citizen input by selecting a committee stacked with pro hunting lobbyists that cater to a minority of extremist fringe hunters.

All citizens have the right to weigh in on this issue, including ethical hunters, hikers, eco-tourists, cyclists, photographers and bird watchers. I ask that Wisconsinites speak out against this practice of chasing wolves with dogs and stop this before it ends in a north woods blood bath.

-- Rachel Tilseth

"Wolf hounding is barbaric, in-humane and archaic and has no place in a civilized society." Rachel Tilseth 

1 comment:

Malamom said...

If one reads Wisconsin's anti-cruelty laws regarding animals carefully, it would appear that hunting wolves with dogs during the wolf breeding season would fall under prohibited behavior given what is bound to be a bloody outcome.