Wolf News Roundup 4/3/2017
by Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!
April 3, 2017
The Flathead Beacon takes a look at Montana’s new wolf management specialist, Diane Boyd. Boyd has had a long career in the study of wolves in Montana, starting back in the late 1970s as wolves began recolonizing the northern portion of the state from Canada.
Washington State University researcher Robert Wielgus issued a press release (noting he was doing so as a private citizen and not as a WSU staffer) once again insinuating that the rancher experiencing damages due to the Profanity Peak wolf pack hadn’t done enough to keep his cattle protected, an allegation soundly contradicted by state wildlife officials who noted that the cattleman had deployed range riders, turning out larger calves, picking up carcasses, and otherwise cooperating with wildlife officials. At the time of Wielgus’s initial claims, WSU issued a rare apology noting, "Some of Dr. Wielgus’ statements in regard to this controversial issue have been both inaccurate and inappropriate."
Now Wielgus is suggesting that ranchers who don’t sign a conflict prevention agreement shouldn’t have lethal control of wolves that kill cattle on their public rangeland allotments. Rich Landers of the Spokesman-Review has a detailed look at the situation (and links to further details) in his outdoors blog, linked below. Wielgus’s most recent action is now under investigation by WSU, according to a report in the Capital Press. In issuing his press release, Wielgus apparently used the university’s email system for distribution, as well as including his university title and contact information.
A captive-raised Mexican wolf that was released in Mexico last October was captured on private ranch land in southeastern Arizona, some 90 miles north of the international border. After attempts to haze the female wolf out of the area failed, she was captured and is currently housed in a captive facility in New Mexico. There has been one confirmed kill of cattle in the area in the week prior to the wolf’s capture.