I will agree with your point, there is no longer space for wolves in Colorado. Yes They were here, but so were dinosaurs and there’s no longer room for either of them.
Ummmm.... Hard No on that. Did you even read the article?? (Rhetorical question, because Obviously)
If this guy wants to make a point that Elk are too frequently harassed and that that is what is driving calf mortality from a Naturally Typical” 50% to an Artificially High 80%, I don’t see how adding 24/7/365 hunting pressure is going to help that.
And he’s way off base about ML season; CO requires iron sights, powdered propellant and full-bore bullets, which makes a top-of-the-modern-line ML as close to the ballistic equivalent of a genuine antique as you could reasonably ask for, and coon-skin hats off to the CMLA for that. As far as precision goes, I’ve shot 1-hole, 50m groups (6 shots, less than 1” wide) with a .54 PRB and period-correct buckhorn sights. Anybody here who thinks that an uglier rifle can beat that?
Of course he DOES have a point about archery season, because a compound is the ballistic equivalent of a stickbow to about the same degree that a scoped, sabot-&-smokeless in-line is the equivalent of my .54 roundballer.
JMO, he has an entirely valid point. Leopold saw the devastation to the landscape wrought by overpopulated deer/Elk herds and recognized that the population densities typically favored by human hunters are flat out unsustainable from a landscape perspective. The changes in the Yellowstone ecosystem are pretty self-explanatory.
I have a gut sense that most human hunters would soon quit if the herds were generally in balance with the landscape, but I don’t think that wolves are the tool of choice. Nobody in the pro-wolf camp 30 years ago would have predicted that the Yellowstone population would explode as it did; nobody had ever seen packs that size or pup survivorship rates like what happened there, because wolves had never been dropped into a heavily stocked pond and sent fishing with no limit. The problem with the “balance of nature” argument is that the concept is a long-term average, and most people think it’s supposed to be a steady state.
The article quotes Leopold - “Only the mountain has lived long enough to listen objectively to the howl of a wolf... “ We humans do not have the patience.
If wolves are dropped into High Elk Density areas, there is a quite foreseeable probability that these will very shortly become High Wolf Density areas, and when the Elk get suitably thinned out, the wolves will seek their sustenance elsewhere.... causing all manner of issues, most likely. One of which is the fact that apex predators tend to view all other creatures as either Food or Potentially Food, and the idea that wolves “instinctively” fear humans is childish. They either Learn to fear humans or they will explore those fat, slow, 2-legged creatures as a potential food source.
And I’d rather not be on the menu. If I were a rancher, I’d rather that my livestock stayed off the menu as well.
There is room Out There for wolves, but (JMO) they need to be managed to numbers where they won’t decimate a public resource that provides recreational and economic opportunities for huge numbers of people.
Pure, unadultered horseshit. They knew. They were told what would happen. They CHOSE not to believe the scientific facts laid out before them. Woles were being reintroduced in the GYA, cost be damned. The ink wasn't even dry, and the challenges started to managing the wolf populations.
They knew. They didn't care. Just like the reintro in Colorado. The clown even states the CPW supports it. Pretty sure the CPW doesn't support ballot box wildlife managment.
He wears a wide brimmed hat and a turquoise bolo tie. In addition ... like Sam Elliot ... he wears a big mustache that also helps him act like a cowboy.
His schtick is that he’s a professor who is a little edgy because he’s not only a cowboy kind of guy ... but he is also an elk hunter. Whoa! He’s not really of course in the way we think of one. But it helps him get to write pro wolf articles as goofy as this one and probably helps his business .. “tour guide and expert witness.”
What “facts” would those have been? You can’t use facts to predict something which is unprecedented. I don’t know who you discussed it with or where or when, but the people I was talking to on a daily basis back then were a mighty sophisticated bunch, and they pretty neat all hunted and to my knowledge not a one of them had any expectation whatsoever the the wolf population would blow up the way it did. Yes, there were people predicting that the sky would come crashing down, but a lot of honest scientists had looked long and hard at the data and most of them found the alarmists to be unconvincing. Which means that they all now have to agree that they collectively underestimated the wolf’s capacity to exploit the situation.
That’s the great thing about objectivity; you’re allowed to learn from your mistakes and move on.
Near as I can tell, anyone who endorses reintroducing wolves without a control plan in place has learned nothing from the Yellowstone experiment .
And anyone who thinks that wolves aren’t coming to Colorado whether they get introduced or not is clearly not paying attention.
I don’t think they should be eradicated, and I know for sure that they shouldn’t be welcomed back without a management plan in place. But I do believe that we’re wasting time, energy and resources arguing against reintroduction when we could put all that to better use getting a solid management plan in place for when they show up on their own. Which they may well have done already.
Time to stop screaming about what we don’t want and have a productive conversation about what we DO want. There is big money on our side - cattlemen, sheepmen, tourism, guides and outfitters... Even politicians will listen to reason if there enough money involved, and I trust the wildlife biologists to figure it out. Not so much fan of anti-hunting conspiracy theories.
Anyway, unlimited tags and an annual quota would go a good ways, as would authorized trapping on private land.
I just think it’s inevitable that they will need to managed, and the tools & manpower are standing by....
Wait. What? You mean this "sophisticated" bunch had no clue that dropping wolves in a food rich environment, with challenges being made to manage the wolf population, would result in an exponential increase. Sophisticated. You keep using that word. I do not think it means, what you think it means.
"...and I trust the wildlife biologists to figure it out."
Except it ain't the wildlife bioligists figuring it out. It's on the ballot. Wildlife management by ballot box. By emotion, not science. And the biologists won't have a say in the management. The courts will. See GYA.
"I just think it’s inevitable that they will need to managed, and the tools & manpower are standing by...."
Except they are a federally protected species. The big $$$ you mention...pales in comparison to the $$$ behind the enviro groups. With an all to complicit media on their side....Wolves will never be managed as they should.
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