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Coyotes-Wolves-Cougars.blogspot.com

Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

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Wednesday, February 22, 2017

A quick "primer-reminder of the habits of Eastern Coyotes...................NY State has a good 20-30,000 Coyotes at the height of Summer(including surviving pups of the year)............................As the saying goes, "IF YOU CAN MAKE IT IN NY, YOU CAN MAKE IT ANYWHERE" and the Eastern Coyote has become a true"top dog" mid-trophic carnivore across forest, field, mountain, suburbs and urban locales(including NYC),,,,,,,,,,With up to 25% Eastern Wolf genes, adults range from 35 to 45 pounds, with larger males exceeding 50 pounds"............... "Some may get bigger, but that is uncommon".,,,,,,,,They easily co-exist with NY's other dominant carnivore, the Black Bear.........Without Eastern Wolves and Pumas in the state, Coyotes fill every niche and cranny, wherever a sliver of cover exists, they exploit it to the fullest..............As with all Coyotes, one litter annually arrives in April with 4 to 6 pups(up to 12 where Coyotes are hunted and persecuted)................."In the wilds of the Adirondack and Catskill Mountains,average territory for a family unit(not a pack) might be 15 to 20 square miles"................"In agricultural areas, the range is about 10 square miles, and in suburban/urban communities it is even smaller — generally 2 to 3 square miles".....................While coyotes have learned to be nocturnal so as to best coexist around us human animals, they can be active all during the daytime and often are especially during pup raising season in the Spring....................."Pups generally disperse from September to March but tend to stay with parents longer if there is a need to hunt deer"...................... "A dominant pair will occasionally allow a female pup from the previous year to help raise their next litter".................. "Dispersed juveniles often band together, which offers some security when crossing territories established by other coyotes".......................Dogs are competitors and as we know, Coyotes will look to kill those smaller than themselves................Domestic cats that wander can and do become a meal......................However, the opportunistic and generalist diet of the Coyotes most often revolves around rodents, small mammals, birds, eggs, newborn deer fawns, ..................In the Summer, Coyotes love to dine on berries, insects,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,Hard Winters that kill off deer and our auto collision killed deer are scavenged by Coyotes as well..................Like us human animals, they are a survivor, with multiple culinary tastes, able to live anywhere, resistant to persecution, smart as a whip.....................Any seasoned hunter/outdoorsman has the ultmate respect for our most adapatable mammal--both the Western and Eastern Coyote

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=http://www.thelcn.com/lcn03/woods-amp-waters-coyotes-are-plentiful-but-wary-wildlife-seldom-seen-20170218&ct=ga&cd=CAEYACoTNTIyNTg4Njc3NDE0MDAxNzc1NTIaMjk4ZGEwYjQzNzk3YWJmYjpjb206ZW46VVM&usg=AFQjCNH0N06za8Z6O5pGOocJUhSdW_O-mQ

Woods & Waters: Coyotes are plentiful, but wary wildlife seldom seen

A week ago Sunday, as I was working at the computer just after dark, I heard what sounded like a siren at first coming up the hill on the road where I live. It puzzled me because I live on an unpopulated gravel back road, and the stretch below my place is seasonal and not maintained during the winter. Then my dog, which had been curled up nearby, went bonkers — running from window to window barking up a storm.


NY Coyotes in various habitat including Queens, NYC

















That’s when I realized that it wasn’t a siren at all. It was a pack of coyotes. And they were close. Very close.
My dog was anxiously barking and whimpering at the door so I let her out onto the gated deck where she continued to voice her displeasure with the howling wild canines. Her reprimand worked. It silenced the coyotes, and they slipped away in the darkness.
But she kept on barking for another half hour just to let them know whose territory this really was. Tracks in the snow showed that there were three of them and that they had come within 50 feet of the house.
The next morning, when I walked out to my roadside newspaper tube, I noticed that the woods were permeated with the skunk-like aroma of coyote urine. That’s when it occurred to me that February is coyote mating season. What we heard the night before was most likely a rivalry over a romantic interlude.
State’s top predator
Today the Eastern Coyote, or Canis latrans, is the Empire State’s top predator. If that’s not surprising, consider that coyotes didn’t exist in New York prior to the 1930s.
Most biologists believe that in the early 1900s, after timber wolves disappeared from eastern forests, western coyotes began an eastward migration to fill the void, which brought them around the wild Canadian shorelines of the Great Lakes. Along the way, they are thought to have interbred with Canadian wolves, creating a distinct subspecies that could explain why the Eastern Coyote is larger than its western cousin.
Lacking competition, the coyote gradually established itself at the top of New York’s predatory food chain.
Eastern Coyote characteristics
The Eastern Coyote resembles a medium-sized German Shepherd dog, but with a pointier snout and a long, thick, grayish-tan to reddish-blond coat, often streaked with black. Its trademark bushy tail, which it carries pointed downward, is what coined its nickname of “brush wolf.” Adults range from 35 to 45 pounds, with larger males exceeding 50 pounds. Some may get bigger, but that is uncommon.
When breeding takes place in February, territories are marked with the skunk-like aroma of coyote urine. Four to six pups — sometimes more — are born in early April. Dens are usually remodeled fox or woodchuck burrows. Bones and feathers scattered in front of a large tunnel are sure indications that it is a coyote den.
According to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, a conservative statewide summertime coyote population estimate — including pups — ranges between 20,000 and 30,000 animals.
A coyote’s range depends on its habitat. An average territory in the Adirondacks might be 15 to 20 square miles. In agricultural areas, the range is about 10 square miles, and in suburban communities it is even smaller — generally 2 to 3 square miles.
Established coyote pairs are territorial. They do not form a true pack like wolves, but they will hunt in family groups. Pups generally disperse from September to March but tend to stay with parents longer if there is a need to hunt deer. A dominant pair will occasionally allow a female pup from the previous year to help raise their next litter. Dispersed juveniles often band together, which offers some security when crossing territories established by other coyotes.
Coyotes are opportunists and will eat whatever is easiest to find or catch, and their diets may change depending on the season. In the spring, they might eat small mammals or fledgling birds. Ground nesters like turkeys, pheasants and ruffed grouse are particularly vulnerable. So are newborn fawns. During the summer, coyotes feed on berries, insects and rodents. They rely on grasshoppers and small mammals in the fall. As winter becomes harder and small mammal populations decline, coyotes may even turn to whitetail deer. Road-killed deer are also an important food source.
Heard, not seen
If coyotes are so plentiful, how come we seldom see them?
Coyotes are among the wariest of all wild animals and have the ability to simply melt into the landscape. In addition, they are primarily crepuscular — active at dawn and dusk — although they will hunt all day and night when feeding pups. The more coyotes are pursued, the more nocturnal they become.
For most people, a coyote experience doesn’t involve seeing them at all — it’s hearing them — usually on frosty mornings, clear moonlit evenings or whenever the local fire whistle goes off.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
John Adamski of Dansville has been a professional nature photographer and outdoors writer for almost 40 years. His work has appeared in Life in the Finger Lakes magazine and Adirondack Life, among others. His earlier careers included fish and wildlife management in the Adirondacks and residential design/build. He has also been involved in the development of the Finger Lakes Museum and Aquarium in Keuka Park. His “Woods & Waters” column appears twice a month in The Livingston County News. Contact him at (585) 746-6247 or email at john@jbadamsgallery.com.


Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Celebrated outdoor writer Rick Bass has to be on pins and needles as the status of the remaining 40 or so Yaak Grizzlies is debated in Federal Court...............Bass who was a resident of the Yaak, USA'S most wildest terrain, has written passionately for two decades about northwestern Montana, the locale of the Yaak-Cabinet ecosystem..............This storied land is a lynchpin territory in the Crown of the Continent system that runs North into Canada...............Here in the Yaak, and running north into Canada, the Griz hangs on, Gray Wolves, Wolverines Pumas, and the entire array of fauna that greeted the first Europeans coming West still remains..........."The Cabinet-Yaak ecosystem is one of four grizzly bear recovery zones in and around Montana, and the smallest with an active bear population"............. "The Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem and Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem each contain more than 800 grizzlies, while the Bitterroot Ecosystem has no known bears although it’s historically prime grizzly habitat(President Bush the younger, stopped a planned rewilding of Griz into the Bitteroot)....So, will the Judge hearing the case for critical habitat designation for the Griz here rule in favor of such while the simultaneous discussion continues at the USFW Service as to whether to delist protections for the Greater Yellowstone and The Northern Continental Divide populations?.........Somehow, it is always one step forward and two steps back when it comes to carnivore rewilding and sustainability.................As I noted in yesterdays blog,,,,,,,,,,,,,not what the Creator had in mind when he told Noah to gather up all the animals, whether they posed a threat to us human animals or not

https://www.google.com/url?rct=j&sa=t&url=http://missoulian.com/news/local/cabinet-yaak-grizzly-bears-get-day-in-court/article_fcac42b6-3694-5f3d-86f8-370cbc0f5d11.html&ct=ga&cd=CAEYACoUMTI0OTc3NTU3NjgzNTA1NTI3NTAyGjU2ZDFlN2YxOWU4Zjk5OTE6Y29tOmVuOlVT&usg=AFQjCNH5_2Z4iAEhlL-dRyn2OiMNF5IGy


CABINET-YAAK ECOSYSTEM

Cabinet-Yaak grizzly bears get day in court


Rob Chaney, The Missoulian, Feb 16, 2017


Whether grizzly bear numbers in northwest Montana are stable, shrinking or growing, both sides of a lawsuit over their federal status agree there aren’t enough of them.
But lawyers for the Alliance for the Wild Rockies and the U.S. Government could not agree why the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service switched its recommendation from “warranted but precluded” for more protection under the federal Endangered Species Act to a designation indicating the bear population was close to recovery. The two sides argued before U.S. District Judge Dana Christensen in Missoula on Thursday.


Rebecca Smith of the Public Interest Defense Center represented AWR, and argued the federal agency was breaking a 20-year position – that the Cabinet-Yaak bears deserved more protection – by suddenly announcing it was lowering the bear’s status.
On Dec. 5, 2014, FWS “abruptly changed course and published a finding that the Cabinet-Yaak grizzly bear is ‘not warranted’ for listing as an endangered species,” Smith wrote in her brief to Christensen. “The agency’s conduct also indicates that the agency has no intention to recover or provide critical habitat for the Cabinet-Yaak grizzly bear, but instead intends to play administrative keep-away with the necessary protections for the Cabinet-Yaak grizzly bear for as long as possible, possibly until the population simply goes extinct.”

  1. The Cabinet-Yaak ecosystem is one of four grizzly bear recovery zones in and around Montana, and the smallest with an active bear population. The Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem and Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem each contain more than 800 grizzlies, while the Bitterroot Ecosystem has no known bears although it’s historically prime grizzly habitat.
Smith argued that between 2007 and 2014, grizzlies in the Cabinet-Yaak dropped from 47 bears to 41 – a 13 percent decline. FWS’ minimum population necessary for recovery in the 2.4-million acre region is 100 bears.
Department of Justice attorney Ricky Turner represented the Department of Interior and its U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Turner agreed Cabinet-Yaak grizzlies haven’t reached recovery. But the population has moved from the brink of extinction to threatened status, and their numbers have been stable or growing in recent years.

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“I’m not impressed with the numbers here,” Christensen warned. “There’s been slight improvement, but we’re still talking about 44 to 48 bears. I’m not as enthusiastic about those numbers as you are. Maybe you can change my mind on that.”
Smith and Turner interpreted the same trend in opposite ways. Smith insisted that with fewer than 50 bears, the loss of one or two females could turn a stable population into a falling one. Turner maintained that the Fish and Wildlife Service was the agency in charge of the science, and if it said the trend was good, Smith hadn’t offered anything to prove it wasn’t.
Christensen added that both sides seemed to be avoiding “the elephant in the room” – the chance that changing the grizzly’s status might require a designation of critical habitat. Currently, the Cabinet-Yaak bears’ status doesn’t require FWS to make such a designation, which would require any other land manager to consider the bear’s needs before making any changes such as a timber sale, road construction or mine expansion.
Smith replied the critical habitat requirement would occur – if FWS got the funding to move the grizzly from its “warranted but precluded” status to actual “endangered” status. She said the whole crux of the case was the agency’s position for 20 years that the bear deserved more protection, before reversing course in 2014 and declaring it needed less.
“Even if what they say is true, they’re using the exact same facts for either conclusion,” Smith said. She called that the definition of “arbitrary and capricious.”
Turner countered that the grizzly’s original “threatened” status was made before the agency adopted a new policy mandating critical habitat designations, so that should not be an issue. He also argued that Smith was calling for a new interpretation of the science, which was the agency’s job.
Christensen did not rule on the matter after Thursday’s hearing.
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The Yaak Valley of northwestern Montana is one of the last great wild places in the United States, a land of black bears and grizzlies, wolves and coyotes, bald and golden eagles, and even a handful of humans. But its magic may not be enough to save it from the forces threatening it now. In The Book of Yaak Rick Bass captures the soul of the valley itself, and he shows how, if places like the Yaak are lost, so too will be the human riches of mystery and imagination




















KIRKUS REVIEW


An urgent plea by a longtime resident to preserve one of the lower 48's remaining wilderness areas. Nestled where Idaho, Montana, and Alberta, Canada, meet, the Yaak Valley--the name means ``arrow'' in Kootenai--is a treasure vault of old-growth pine, spruce, and Douglas fir. It is also a prime target for the logging industry, which now seeks to open the Yaak to clearcut logging. 
Bass (The Lost Grizzlies, 1995, etc.) is scandalized by this possibility, especially inasmuch as the US Forest Service subsidizes such logging ``to the tune of one or two billion dollars per decade'' and ``timber companies working on public lands in the West continue to post record quarterly profits for their stockholders''--precisely because of the government's largess. 
This well-written, impatient, often polemical book urges that the Yaak, and other wild places, be set aside from economic development, and Bass's program is modest: ``I want,'' he writes, ``the last few roadless areas in this still-wild valley to remain that way.'' 
He also celebrates the power of wilderness to inspire the meditative, simple life: ``I practice going slow,'' he says, ``at a pace that can be sustained. I practice looking around at things.'' He also introduces us to neighbors who have found a special solace in the deep woods. Bass argues that most Montanans and Idahoans oppose any further destruction of their backyard wilderness and demonstrates how important old-growth forest is to the health of the entire ecosystem.
 Much of this will be familiar territory to readers who know Bass's work, for he has written about the Yaak before in books like Winter (1991) and The Ninemile Wolves (1992). Even so, this is a valuable document in the continuing battle over wilderness preservation.

Monday, February 20, 2017

"About one third of the Swiss landscape offers suitable wolf habitat".................... "Nonetheless, there is only a small fraction thereof where the wolf is tolerated by local communities"................ "Those regions – characterized by both favorable environmental conditions and a positive attitude towards the wolf – are identified as candidate regions for the successful short to medium-term wolf expansion, according to a study by U. of Zurich biologists".....................This is all well and good if we can tilt enough folks opinions positive about Wolf, Puma and Grizzly Bear reintroduction in the USA, ................But realistically, there would not be a wolf population of some size in Wyoming, Montana and Idaho had the Endangered Species Act not existed...........And the same in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan, Oregon and Washington State if Wolves had not had some protections early on.........................There is always going to be opposition to large carnivore rewilding(e.g. New Mexico, Arizona with Mexican Wolves and North Carolina with Red Wolves) even though our judeo/christian philosophy pointedly has the Creator instructing Noah to keep every single species of animal alive, regardless of whether potentially harmful to us human animals..........................So, only introduce carnivores where folks say "OK"?????...........Since they called North America home long before any of us occupied this great land, I vote to bring em in where continuous open space, prey densities are sound and road densities are at a minimum.....................I go with the adage that our elite armed forces, sports and business teams have always played by----"ADAPT AND OVERCOME",,,,,,,We should all adapt and overcome our ignorance and fear of carnivores living amongst us and in the process we will become stronger, more alert and more in touch with our primal selves, relegating the machines and tech toys that forever occupy us to their best roles as tools rather than the essence of our being

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/02/170217012752.htm?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+sciencedaily%2Fplants_animals%2Fecology+%28Ecology+Research+News+--+ScienceDaily%29

Novel socio-ecological approach helps identifying suitable wolf habitats in human-dominated landscapes

The Gray Wolf








The wolf was eradicated in Switzerland and from large parts of continental Europe including France and Germany by the end of the 19th century. Following legal protection, the wolf population started naturally increasing and expanding, and in 1995 its presence was confirmed in Switzerland. Sightings have increased since. Despite 13'800 km2 of Switzerland are characterized by favourable conditions such as large forests with little human pressure and have thus been identified as suitable wolf habitat, wolf expansion in Switzerland has been substantially slower than in other parts of continental Europe. As the wolf is more and more subject to human-dominated landscapes, scientist at the University of Zurich developed a novel method that integrated both ecological and human components to identify regions with favourable environmental conditions and where the wolf was tolerated.

Mapping human acceptance of the wolf to identify suitable socio-ecological areas
About one third of 10,000 randomly selected residents in Switzerland participated in the survey. Combining the response from questionnaires with geographical information, Dominik Behr and his team created a nationwide map of human acceptance. Acceptance decreased with increasing altitude of residency and even more so where high numbers of sheep and goats were held. Acceptance increased with increasing distance from confirmed wolf presence and in densely populated areas. People who perceived the wolf as dangerous to humans and harmful to livestock and wildlife mainly opposed the wolf. Younger people, and people who believe that the wolf had a positive influence on the ecosystem had a more positive attitude towards the predator.

green indicates wolf acceptance,,,,yellow neutral toward wolf
and red is opposed to wolf introduction in Switzerland

"When we overlapped our human acceptance map with a habitat suitability map for the wolf, we realized that only about 6% of Switzerland was characterized by both a positive attitude and favourable environment conditions. This was in contrast to results from the habitat suitability map, which returned one third of the Swiss landscape as being suitable for the wolf" said Dominik Behr. "As wildlife biologists, we are good at understanding the ecological factors determining the suitability of a habitat for a wildlife species. Due to ever-increasing overlap between human and wildlife, however, we are obliged to take into consideration how human acceptance modifies our ecological description of habitat suitability. This study demonstrates one effective way to do this." stressed Arpat Ozgul, professor of population ecology at the Department of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies at the University of Zurich, and co-author of the study.

A novel framework to manage wolves and people
The socio-ecological map created by Dominik Behr and his co-authors appears to accurately represent the wolf situation in Switzerland of the past years, including identifications of areas of high, moderate or limited conflict. "By capturing areas characterized by both favourable environmental conditions and a positive acceptance towards the wolf, our approach is a valuable tool to identify overall socio-ecological suitable areas for the wolf. Under given conditions, those regions are good candidates for the successful short to medium-term expansion of the wolf. Additionally, this approach allows to identify key regions where proactive and targeted socio-ecological management plans and a constructive dialog among different stakeholders are needed" said Dr. Gabriele Cozzi, who coordinated the study.

Story Source:
Materials provided by University of ZurichNote: Content may be edited for style and length.

Journal Reference:
  1. Dominik M. Behr, Arpat Ozgul, Gabriele Cozzi. Combining human acceptance and habitat suitability in a unified socio-ecological suitability model: a case study of the wolf in SwitzerlandJournal of Applied Ecology, 2017; DOI:10.1111/1365-2664.12880

Sunday, February 19, 2017

For me, the finest magazine that I have ever subscribed to is the quarterly, NORTHERN WOODLANDS...................While I have not lived in the northeast for the past 18 years, the wisdom, breath, scope and depth of this conservation/working woodlands publication is without peer.................I daresay without reservation that I literally curl up on the sofa and read this scribe cover to cover when it arrives at the house....................It's Chief Editor, Dave Mance, is a "New England Son", born and raised and now writing about his "homeland" with heart, soul and aplomb...................Today, he discusses our society and it's evolution from a humility oriented character to a more individualistic focused character and how these two very different outlooks and way of thinking are impacting how we as a society approach our land use decisions.................In Dave's own words----"The point is not that we’re wrong when we follow our inner voices; it’s just to remember that we’re not always right"................... "The sweet spot is when the old moral traditions and the new individualistic ones exist in creative tension and conversation".......................... "This conversation needs to happen in most realms of life, but especially where it comes to forest conservation"........................... "What those of us who care about the woods and rural culture are trying to do is get people to cultivate a land ethic – to consider the land and strengthen their relationship with it and commitment to it"..................... "To see their individual holding as part of a larger matrix".................... "To see how their management affects, and ideally might compliment, the forest as a whole"........................ "To see how complicated nature is – forestry is – and to have the mental flexibility that’s required for good stewardship"..................... "To be a grateful inheritor of rural traditions and wisdom; to understand that wisdom is not knowledge; that experience is a better teacher than pure reason"................................. "To have the awareness, as we’re managing on the scale of centuries, to know that no matter how smart we think we are, a lot of what we know is distorted and wrong"........................... "If we’re going to strengthen the land ethic and encourage the next generation to coexist productively with nature, we first need to get people to coexist with their own bifurcated human nature"............................ "If we want woods with character, we need its stewards to have character".................. "And, of course, if we’re going to encourage this in others, we must first encourage it in ourselves"




Woods With Character

J
Johnny Unitas(top)--Joe Namath(bottom)






I just finished a fabulous book by David Brooks called The Road to Character, in which he explores our transition from a culture that valued humility and trusted institutions to an individualistic culture that encourages people to see themselves as the center of the universe. Brooks used the quarterbacks who faced off in Super Bowl III in 1969 as illustrations of the old school/new school divide; in that game Johnny Unitas (the crewcut-wearing son of a coal-delivery-truck driver who was never anything but self-effacing in public and played NFL quarterback with the pizazz of a plumber laying pipe) lost to Joe Namath, a flamboyant sixties swinger with fur coats and long hair whose autobiography is entitled “I can’t wait until tomorrow because I get better looking every day.” A more contemporary example would be the chasm between the first president Bush, who, if a speech writer put the word “I” in one of his speeches would instinctively cross it out, and our current president.
We can and should acknowledge that there was good that came out of this paradigm shift – there were problems with the old order, and becoming a more assertive and self-centered people has had benefits. Nevertheless, there’s plenty to be concerned about, as kids are being raised today to believe they have all of life’s answers inside themselves even while many of the adults in their lives bear the psychic scars of fitting themselves with that same self-absorbed yoke. (Elizabeth Gilbert writes in Eat, Pray, Love: “God dwells within you as you yourself, exactly the way you are.” That thought terrifies me.)
To the woods part.
I went for a walk the other day with some NRCS foresters to look at a prescribed burn site, and because I had a head full of this book I was seeing forest management as it’s practiced today in northern New England as very old school, as very Johnny U. The institutions through which we structure our management endeavors harken back to the middle part of the last century, with the landowner playing her role, and the forester playing his role, the state, the fed, the information distribution network of which Northern Woodlandsis a part, on and on throughout the whole web of management-related activity. This system worked well in a culture that had faith in institutions. It worked well in a humble culture, where the internet hadn’t yet made everyone a self-appointed expert. There’s still the assumption in northern New England that while forests may be individually owned, they’re part of a greater community. For example, our current use taxation systems are built in a way that ensures people continue to manage their forests for timber, so that the resource can be used by the public. This worked well in a society that valued cultivation and civilization and thrift.








But these things can certainly chafe against our newer individualistic impulses – and don’t think I’m setting myself on a detached pedestal here because I can be as bad as anyone in this regard. I don’t have the inherent faith in institutions – which can be slow, and ponderous, and uncreative – that my father or grandfather did. My father belonged and belongs to a wide range of civic organizations, and at 41 I’ve yet to follow his lead. I’m inclined to feel like I know what’s best for the woods I know intimately and I’m happy to tell you all about it. I don’t agree with the landowner who wants to be in current use and not harvest timber because of guidance from their inner Lorax, or the unflinching animal lover who serves their inner God by campaigning to end hunting, or the libertarian whose brand of half-baked forestry is none of anyone’s damn business, or the conservationist who wants to lock up their 50 acres of unremarkable pasture pine on the edge of town and cause development to leap frog around it and spread to the countryside, big picture be damned; but I feel a kinship with their certainty, because it’s just a different manifestation of my own “I know best” impulses.











The point is not that we’re wrong when we follow our inner voices; it’s just to remember that we’re not always right. The sweet spot is when the old moral traditions and the new individualistic ones exist in creative tension and conversation. This conversation needs to happen in most realms of life, but especially where it comes to forest conservation. What those of us who care about the woods and rural culture are trying to do is get people to cultivate a land ethic – to consider the land and strengthen their relationship with it and commitment to it. To see their individual holding as part of a larger matrix. To see how their management affects, and ideally might compliment, the forest as a whole. To see how complicated nature is – forestry is – and to have the mental flexibility that’s required for good stewardship. To be a grateful inheritor of rural traditions and wisdom; to understand that wisdom is not knowledge; that experience is a better teacher than pure reason. To have the awareness, as we’re managing on the scale of centuries, to know that no matter how smart we think we are, a lot of what we know is distorted and wrong.
If we’re going to strengthen the land ethic and encourage the next generation to coexist productively with nature, we first need to get people to coexist with their own bifurcated human nature. If we want woods with character, we need its stewards to have character. And, of course, if we’re going to encourage this in others, we must first encourage it in ourselves

In a new peer reviewed article researched and wrtitten by Trent University(Canada) scientists John Benson, Karen Loveless, Linda Rutledge and Brent Patterson, it is revealed that "Eastern Coyotes and various admixes of the two kill less total ungulate(deer and moose combined and moose alone than do Eastern Wolves"................."Furthermore, canids in packs dominated by eastern coyote ancestry consumed significantly less ungulate biomass and more anthropogenic food than packs dominated by wolf ancestry"......................"Similar to gray wolves in previous studies, eastern wolves preyed on deer where they were available"............ "However, in areas where deer were scarce, eastern wolves killed moose at rates similar to those previously documented for gray wolves at comparable moose densities across North America".........."Therefore, (while) Eastern coyotes are effective deer predators, their dietary flexibility and low kill rates on moose suggest they have not replaced the ecological role of wolves in eastern North America"..................Restoration of Eastern Wolves and Pumas in Eastern North America is needed if we are in fact going to restore ecological integrity to our woodlands







Ungulate predation and ecological roles of wolves and coyotes in eastern North America

Authors

  • This article has been accepted for publication and undergone full peer review but has not been through the copyediting, typesetting, pagination and proofreading process, which may lead to differences between this version and the Version of Record. Please cite this article as doi: 10.1002/eap.1499



Abstract

Understanding the ecological roles of species that influence ecosystem processes is a central goal of ecology and conservation biology. Eastern coyotes (Canis latrans) have ascended to the role of apex predator across much of eastern North America since the extirpation of wolves (Canis spp.) and there has been considerable confusion regarding their ability to prey on ungulates and their ecological niche relative to wolves.

Eastern Wolf in Algonquin Provincial Park
Ontario, Canada




Eastern Wolves historically ranged east of the Mississippi
across to the Atlantic,,,,,,,,,Texas to Florida on up the Appalacians



Eastern wolves (C. lycaon) are thought to have been the historical top predator in eastern deciduous forests and have previously been characterized as deer specialists that are inefficient predators of moose because of their smaller size relative to gray wolves (C. lupus). We investigated intrinsic and extrinsic influences on per capita kill rates of white-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) and moose (Alces alces) during winter by sympatric packs of eastern coyotes, eastern wolves, and admixed canids in Ontario,Canada to clarify the predatory ability and ecological roles of the different canid top predators of eastern North America. 

Gray Wolves, larger than Eastern Wolves and Eastern Coyotes
historically found West of the Mississippi, Alaska down to Mexico
with hybridization with Eastern Wolves in the Algonquin Park
region of Canada down through the Northeastern USA



Eastern coyote ancestry within packs negatively influenced per capita total ungulate (deer and moose combined) and moose kill rates. Furthermore, canids in packs dominated by eastern coyote ancestry consumed significantly less ungulate biomass and more anthropogenic food than packs dominated by wolf ancestry.

Eastern Coyotes, a hybrid of Eastern Wolves and Western Coyotes



 Similar to gray wolves in previous studies, eastern wolves preyed on deer where they were available. However, in areas were deer were scarce, eastern wolves killed moose at rates similar to those previously documented for gray wolves at comparable moose densities across North America.

Western Coyote
Image result for coyote in new mexico
Eastern coyotes are effective deer predators, but their dietary flexibility and low kill rates on moose suggest they have not replaced the ecological role of wolves in eastern North America.