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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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Sunday, September 16, 2012

Where is the great American Revolutionary writer Thomas Paine and his classic "COMMON SENSE" tomb when you need him(it)?..........If the Republicans would mitigate and temper their zealousness when it comes to social issues like hunting wolves with dogs, spotlights and baiting,,,,,,,,,,,,,,and just stick to overhauling our arcane tax system and reducing the deficit, they might win every office in the USA.........Wisconsin State Democratic Representative, Chris Danou who is a hunter and holds a degree in wildlife biology predicted that the new Wisconsin Wolf hunt statute would be challenged for its draconian mandate that allows dogs to be used in hunting Wolves,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,and in fact a temporary injunction has been mandated by the Courts................Let us see if COMMON SENSE pervails and if the courts permanently keep the dogs out of the woods during the wolf hunt

LUEDERS COLUMN: Did state's wolf hunt bill go too far?

For Chris Danou, the temptation is great, too great to resist. "I hate to say, 'I told you so,' " deadpans the Democratic staterepresentative from the village of Trempealeau. "But I told you so."Danou, who holds a master's degree in wildlife biology, tried to rein in what he felt were unwise provisions in Wisconsin's wolf hunting bill, which sailed through the Legislature early this year. He offered and supported amendments to shorten the season and ban hunting at night or with dogs. His amendments failed, except one requiring carcass registration.


A hunter himself, Danou says he's not philosophically opposed to a state wolf hunt; he just wanted to avoid the problems he foresaw with giving hunters everything they wanted. "I remember saying, 'Be careful what you wish for — you overstep and the courts will step in,' " recalls Danou, who ended up voting for the final bill, despite its perceived flaws, along with several other Democrats.

Late last month, in a lawsuit brought by a coalition of Wisconsin humane societies, a Dane County judge issued a temporary injunction against using dogs to hunt their canine ancestors, agreeing that, without better rules, it could lead to devastating confrontations.

The state Department of Natural Resources' lawyer warned in court that this might mean the agency "will not be able to issue licenses at all." The agency now plans to proceed with the wolf hunt beginning Oct. 15, but without dogs, which under the law can't be used until late November anyway. DNR staff will try to craft new rules on dog training and use before then.

fair chase---NOT!

Rep. Fred Clark, D-Sauk City, who sponsored a failed amendment to bar the use of dogs in Wisconsin's wolf hunt, says it's just one of a number of "badly written laws that don't hold up to judicial scrutiny," like the new voter ID rule. "The final part of how a bill becomes a law is that it ends up in court."

The litigation did throw a wrench into the process, and more may yet be flung. Robert Habush, an attorney for the plaintiffs, has suggested that further court proceedings would "expose really what happened here," declining to elaborate. (A Sept. 14 hearing will be held on whether the case should be dismissed.) And Dick Thiel, a retired DNR wolf biologist who gave expert testimony in the dog case, expects other legal challenges to be filed.

Thiel and others suspect the bill was written with substantial input from pro-hunting groups, which invested more than 200 hours lobbying on its behalf, and minimal input from DNR staff and other wildlife professionals.

"They needed to keep science out of it, because there are a lot of flaws in the bill," asserts Thiel, who is among the 20,000 people who've applied for a wolf hunt license. He says the DNR has stacks of reports of wolf attacks on dogs: "It's just a bloodbath."

State Rep. Scott Suder, R-Abbotsford, the bill's lead Assembly sponsor, emphatically denies that hunters called the shots. He says he wrote the bill himself, with input from the DNR, legislative support staff and "all kinds of groups."

not pretty when a a gang of dogs tear into a wolf

DNR spokesman Bill Cosh says agency staff reviewed and helped tweak the bill, but declines to offer details or say whether it supported the bill's controversial provisions, like night hunting or dog use: "We do not discuss our confidential conversations with legislators."

Scott Meyer, a lobbyist for United Sportsmen of Wisconsin, which supported the bill, says hunting groups were consulted during the drafting process but that "hunters don't write bills." He acknowledges that other U.S. states with newly minted wolf-hunting bills do not allow dogs, but says they are routinely used for this purpose in Canada. And he argues that the DNR cannot legally enforce a ban on dogs, because the statute allows their use.

Does that mean hunters might disregard rules that would keep dogs out? "I'm not going to speculate," Meyer says.

Bill Lueders is the Money and Politics Project director at the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism ( The project, a partnership of the center and MapLight, is supported by the Open Society Institute. The center collaborates with Wisconsin Public Radio, Wisconsin Public Television, other news media and the UW-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication. All works created, published, posted or disseminated by the center do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of UW-Madison or any of its affiliates.

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