September 3, 2009 in Letters

Wolf defenders’ view absent

The Spokesman-Review
 

Rich Landers in Sunday’s Spokesman (Aug. 30), quoted seven people who were in favor of hunting wolves. It is not that dissenters are nonexistent or hard to reach. He could have spoken with Michael Robinson of the Center for Biological Diversity or Carlos Carroll of the Klamath Center for Biological Research. Instead, he relied exclusively on people whose careers and livelihoods depend on agencies whose primary concern is “management” of wildlife. Is it possible that his choice of “experts” was a tad lopsided?

Ed Bangs, U.S. Fish and Wildlife’s wolf coordinator, was quoted as saying that the Northern Rockies wolf population was “still growing at an annual rate of up to 20 percent.” The operative words here were “still” and “up to,” neither of which is accurate.

In fact, Bangs’ own agency shows that wolf population in the Northern Rockies grew by 16.7 percent in 2007, and by only 8.7 percent in 2008. This downward trend shows up also in the statistics for Idaho. Wolf population increased there by 8.8 and 15.6 percent in 2007 and 2008 respectively.

Wolves could soon reach the biological carrying capacity of their environment without much help from wildlife agencies.

Ken Fischman

Sandpoint

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