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Thread: Ak Hunting News: Idaho Also Wants to Manage Wolves

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    Arrow Ak Hunting News: Idaho Also Wants to Manage Wolves

    This news clip is from Alaska Hunting News. Discussion is welcome, but these robot generated news threads are not monitored by the webmaster.

    Alaska's state and federal governments have suppressed wolf populations in certain areas of the state for decades to improve prey species survival rates and benefits for hunters and the economy. The programs have been controversial since the 1970's, but have continued in fits and starts depending on Alaska's governors and their willingness to take the political heat.

    Now, a northern tier US state with a recently burgeoning wolf population wants to do the same. Idaho's governor has announced plans to remove up to 550 wolves from the state, as soon as the wolf is delisted as an endangered species.

    The Associated Press wrote the following (as reported in SignOnSanDiego.com) "Idaho's governor said Thursday he will support public hunts to kill all but 100 of the state's gray wolves after the federal government strips them of protection under the Endangered Species Act. Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter told The Associated Press that he wants hunters to kill about 550 gray wolves. That would leave about 100 wolves, or 10 packs, according to a population estimate by state wildlife officials."
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    Member Montana Native's Avatar
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    Good, maybe Idaho's sister states will jump on the band wagon and follow suit. In know that the Yelowstone pack has desimated the elk/bison population. I do believe they have their place in the eco system, however, they need to be controlled to a point where they don't over step the boundaries man has created. It's almost sad to say kill them, again, when push comes to shove, man will win every time.

  3. #3

    Exclamation Too Little, Too Late

    The parks and wildlife departments yeilded to the BUNNY HUGGERS and reintroduced these wolves into this area without any forthought as to what would come about in the future. They also allowed for no oversight or control of the wolves range. They just radiated out from the park into their old hunting grounds, Idaho, Montana, and greater Wyoming. These uncontrolled packs of wolves have laid waste to their four footed prey. We the people have again tipped the balance of nature, maybe TOO far in the wrong direction. To gain control the state must establish a protocol, which may even involve a wolf hunting and trapping season.

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    Default Here's some facts

    The first fact is, if they succeed in reducing the number of wolves to 100, they will be listed and protected again.

    The second fact is Idaho's success rates for both deer and elk have improved as the wolf population grew. Here are the numbers from the Idaho Dept of Game.


    Year------------ Deer------------Elk
    2005-----------54,050--------21,470
    04 -------------46,160--------20,800
    03 -------------43,500--------18,400
    02--------------44,650--------18,400
    01 -------------53,000--------19,500
    00 -------------45,200--------20,200
    1999-----------43,300--------17,500
    98-------------39,000--------18,750
    97-------------38,600--------18,500
    96-------------50,800--------25,600
    95 ------------48,400--------22,400
    94 ------------56,900 --------28,000

    Idaho had 15 wolves introduced in 1995, and 20 in 1996. the drop off in deer and elk was between 1996 and 1997. That was from a bad winter. You can't blame the wolves, unless you are going to try to tell me that 35 wolves were way more efficient in killing deer and elk than the present number of around 600.

    Here's the link with all the numbers. https://research.idfg.idaho.gov/wil...vest%20PR06.pdf

    And here's a link that has the latest data and Biologists studies of elk populations in Idaho. If you take the time to read it, you'll see that the number one factor affecting elk herds is road building, mostly from logging. You'll also see that the elk areas where the recruitment isn't too good has the same predator density as the areas that have good recruitment. The biggest difference is that the areas with the lower recruitments are areas that have grown up so there is less forage for the elk than in the past. These areas would have less elk whether there were wolves present or not. It's all about habitat.

    https://research.idfg.idaho.gov/wil...W-170-R-1-1.pdf

  5. #5

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    the current laws prohibit a person from killing a wolf unless it is killing him, but if it is eating his dogs horses cattle etc. and he puts it down.....he is in big trouble. I would like to se them have depredation rights on their own property. if the game dept. can not keep the wolves in the park/wilderness, then let the land owner fix that. If they open a general hunt it is still gonna remove the rights of a landowner.

  6. #6

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    two dux, I am not here to argue with your numbers but having done a few game counts for the dept I can tell you that the numbers published are a guess at best and are never guessed on the low side.

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    well it all depends on where you go for info..
    i have never believed anything gov. agencies have put out.
    but i do know this about them numbers.
    the wolves that are counted in idaho are only the ones with a collerd member in the pack. they do not count uncollerd packs..
    there is no way of knowing how many wolves are running around in idaho.
    i talked to F&G biologist while out elk hunting and he put the number of wolves up around 1000/1200.. so who knows??

    i spend many days each year out in the field mostly where i hunt elk, and have seen only two calves in seven years..
    i used to see 10 to 50 elk most every day while hunting now i and my hunting party will go several days with out seeing one elk or very little sign.
    i have talked to pilots that fly the back country here and all of em tell the same story, they are not seeing the number of elk they used to..
    but they are seeing wolves almost every time they go up..

    now about roads,, well logging is almost non existent in idaho,except on private land such as potlatch & boise cascade, thanks to the same folks that reintroduced the wolves,, so there ain't very many new roads going in,,
    in fact they are closing roads faster than a body can keep track of in idaho..
    (which is fine by me)

    a little more about numbers
    so lets say we have only 600 wolves in idaho,and each wolf needs to average 5-10 pounds of meat per day now lets just split the difference to 7.5 pounds ..
    take 7.5 x 600=4'500 pounds of meat per day. now take 4'500x365=1'642'500 pounds of meat per year.
    now that's a lot of dead elk,
    now how many elk do they kill for sport know one really knows for sure but i am sure that it means a lot more dead elk.
    how many pregnant cows do they run in the winter that die of exhaustion later on?? one thing is for sure they kill a lot more than they can eat..

    i will agree that there are many factors that effect the herds, like all of the homes going up in the winter grounds has gotta be putting the crunch on em.
    some of that is offset by winter feeding though..

    i have to admit i do like hearing the wolves howl and like watching them hunt.
    and i believe there is a place for em. here but if we don't get a management plan going right away then there ain't gonna be nothing for them wolves to eat except wolves livestock and people!!!!!!!!

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    I would submit that perhaps the elk numbers that everyone is "used to" may in fact have become falsely inflated due to the lack of natural predators because of man's prior essentially total elimination of wolves. What was the situation when there were no white men (and very few native americans)? I suspect there was some sort of equilibrium established between the number of predators (wolves) and the number of prey (elk) since they were BOTH present at the time of the white man's arrival and presumabil BOTH had reached STABLE sustainable populations. I might also note that wolves eat a lot more than just elk, all the way down from deer to small critters and birds and they do not necessarily successfully kill large ungulates on a DAILY basis. Lastly elk are historically a plains animal and have been forced to retreat to more mountainous terrain because of hunting pressure...not pressure from previously none existent wolves. I offer this as food for thought...however indigestable some may find it.

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    Member slimm's Avatar
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    that is some very good food for thought shphtr.
    you make good points about pre white man.
    but as we all know that nature will never be able to balance its self that way ever again it must be managed by man.

    as far as wolves eating other birds and critters you are right, in fact i used to see many many grouse while out hunting elk but i haven't seen but maybe two in the last few years..
    in fact i haven't seen a fox for years either, we used to have them coming around camp quite often but not any more..
    i don't know if this can all be blamed on the wolf, but it sure seems strange that these critters started to disappear shortly after the wolves showed up.
    and in the area where i live the wolves haven't showed up here yet, and there is an abundance of all game foxes grouse and critters..
    it is like day and night between the two areas.

    i am not claiming to be any kind of biologist, in fact i never made it past the 10th grade. and i don't claim to understand it all.this is just my personal observations
    and i have lived in idaho and hunted/camped/fished here all of my life, 44 years..
    sumthen ain't rite..
    in the areas that wolves are abundant all other animals are disappearing at an alarming rate..

    i think i read on this site that in alaska that the mortality rate on moose is 85/90% due to wolves and bears,
    and i am sure that's the way idaho elk herds will go if we don't do something to manage and control the wolves.
    tyler

  10. #10

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    shphtr,

    elk live in the timber more because the lowlands are developed then the hunting pressure. I used to have 100-150 head of elk winter within 10 miles of my house but it is now all houses and bussiness. the timber is the safest place for them. you are right that the elk did cover huge expanses of the country and the wloves did not kill them off.....but, with the ever shrinking habitat the introduction of predatory pack animals, to be un regulated is nuts. at one point in time it was easy for the elk to avoid the big bears and wolves just by the sheer amount of terrain they could choose from, now imagine how long 100 elk and a pack of wolves are gonna last on a couple hundred acres.....they won't. both show the extreme side of the situation and both are not going to exist....but it shows that decreased habitat and increased predatoty influence is something to stay on top of before they eat themselves out of house and home.

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    Come on guys........wolves are way more important than people. There shouldn't be any price we won't pay for the deep down good feeling it gives one to just know wolves exist in your area.
    Balance? So everything was hunky dory before the ol white man came along? Hey..........maybe if all you white people just moved out of Idaho things would improve!
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
    I have less friends now!!

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    Theres a few elk left....yesterday these bulls/cows were in the valley in front of the house I'm building. Its pretty thick country though.
    I hear lots of coyotes out here but no wolves.

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    Default elk

    good points slimm, I'm 41 years here and seein the same thing. Frank, you up around St. maries? them wolves are all over the state

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    Frank...........building a house? Sounds like your part of the problem???????????
    yuk yuk!
    I can't help being a lazy, dumb, weekend warrior.......I have a JOB!
    I have less friends now!!

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    Ahhh nothing like hunting endagered species, predetor control is like the bounty on eagles to save salmon.
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

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    Default wolves

    I never said they can't be managed, all I pointed out was the feds have a number in mind that will trigger protection for the wolves. If the State doesn't do it's best to keep them above that number, the feds will step in and do the job. I don't think you want that. I think the Idaho Governor was ignorant to say he'd immediately reduce them to less than 100 wolves unless he thought he was buying some political capitol from hunters. The Feds will be watching closely. I think if they are considering taking them off the protected list at 600, that the number they want to see is quite a bit above 100.

    As far as the guys saying they aren't seeing the numbers they used to, maybe they need to find a new area cuz someone is finding them. I know in heavily forested areas where animals are dependant on logging to open up areas for forage, there is a certain point where the area quits producing. In the 80's I hunted deer on the Olympic Penninsula North of Hoquiam off the 5200 line. They were just logging the area then for several years and it turned into a deer hotspot. We had a large group fom 10 to 15 guys we hunted with and for a few years we all scored every year. Then it started tapering off. I moved back to Alaska in the early 90's but get down there to visit family once in a while. You could take 100's of guys out the 5200 line now and you'd be lucky to see a deer let alone get one. It's grown up to a stage where it's too big to see into the brush, and too brushy to get out and still hunt. The obvious thing to do if I still lived there is find an area of fresh logging to put my effort into. If there wasn't any new logging to be found, I sure couldn't blame wolves or any predator that there wasn't any good habitat for deer.

    One thing you'll for sure see less of if wolves move in is coyotes. Wolves will take them out.

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    Member slimm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ak_powder_monkey View Post
    Ahhh nothing like hunting endagered species, predetor control is like the bounty on eagles to save salmon.
    i didn't know they were an endangered species.
    sounds like there's more than a few up in alaska, and Canada..and have always been there..
    they just haven't been around here for awhile if ever..

    another point i would like to bring up is that, supposedly that these Canadian greys never did roam the western part of the U.S. and there primary food source was moose & caribou not elk.. so these elk have never had to deal with this kind of predator, and if they did that would of been about ten generations ago.. i think they are having a heck of a time trying to figure out a defence..

    to QUOTE tudux.
    as far as guys saying they are not seeing the numbers they used to,maybe they ought to find a new area,cause someone is finding them..
    i know in heavily forested areas where animals are dependent on logging to open up areas of forage,there is a certain point where the area quits producing]

    that is a good point, but just is not the case,here in central idaho..
    the area that i hunt has had many forest fires ,thourgh the years,, which in turn has produced some wonderful habitat.. look at how the elk were thriving after the yellow stone fire... but where are they now????
    not only that , i have been hunting elk since i was twelve that is 32 years, i know a prime area when i see it. just like you folks can look over an area up there and tell if its gonn'a hold moose or not.

    big open grassy south facing mountains, with steep deep heavily timbered north sides , throw in lots of springs and creeks and bang there you have it ,prime elk habitat...

    it also seems to be the same story from sportsman around the whole state,& montana and wyoming, it just ain't me.

    although i will admit that i am seeing a lot more elk starting to take hold, down in the prairies and high desert here.. maybe they are going there to winter and figure out that there are not any wolves here so why not just stay. kind'a like a huge circle that has taken a couple of hundred years to complete.....

    like i said before i don't want to wipe out all the wolves here but we just gotta get them under control and start managing them before it is to late.

    last year i shot a small bull minutes before dark, so here i am dressing out and quartering up this elk when all heck breaks loose wolves are howling all around me and it is pitch dark, i have a two hour hike back to camp,
    talk about being pie eyed, i was dern near ready to wet myself the whole time
    my imagination was reeling, but on the other hand i have never felt so alive and wild, it would have to be the single most exciting outdoor experience of my life...

    you fellas must have some brass nuts up there, dealing with them grizzles, especially if you do any wandering around after dark!!!!

    one last thing--
    hey martintrapper I'm game ya gotta extra room i can stay in there???:]

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