The Spokesman-Review

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Caribou recovery is nuts

Much has been made about the science behind the current caribou debate now raging in North Idaho. If you are really interested in learning what kind of science is behind this controversy, take 10 minutes and read this academic research document: “Woodland Caribou: A Conservation Dilemma” (just Google it). A few quotes:

“Our best efforts to ‘recover’ caribou in the Selkirk Mountains have not worked.” Agreed.

“It is unreasonable to expect populations to respond quickly to recovery efforts that do not first consider habitat restoration that may take decades.” We don’t have decades; our resort economy is dying before our eyes.

“The most obvious problem is that this will require a commitment of at least 100 years to habitat restoration before we can reasonably expect caribou to thrive in the Selkirks.” One hundred years? Clearly these people are nuts.

“Does it really matter if there are a few caribou south of an arbitrarily drawn international border?” Finally a common sense question, and, of course, we already know the answer to this one.

More than $4.6 million of our tax dollars have been wasted on this program. Enough is enough. It’s time for this grand experiment to be terminated.

Rod Stafford

Priest River, Idaho



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