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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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Thursday, October 11, 2012

With an estimated 300 or so Wolverines still calling the USA home in the Northern Rockies and Cascades, The ALLIANCE FOR THE WILD ROCKIES joined 7 other conservation groups in suing the State of Montana for still allowing trappers to kill up to 5 Wolverines each----This type trapping is insane and runs counter to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife action to determine what degree of protection to afford the Wolverine(threatened or endangered) prior to 2014......... Climate change has researchers predicting that reduced suitable wolverine habitat in the lower 48 states will be as much as 23 percent as of 2045 and by 63 percent as of 2099, according to the University of Washington and the U.S. Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station............So how in good conscious can Montana Fish & Wildlife permit a scant few Wolverines to be ttrapped out of existance?

Conservation groups sue to end trapping of wolverines in Montana
By Laura Zuckerman

SALMON, Idaho  - Conservationists on Thursday asked a state judge to end trapping of wolverines in Montana at a time when fewer than 300 of the elusive animals roam the Northern Rockies and Northern Cascades.
Montana is the only one of the lower 48 U.S. states that permits the harvesting of wolverines, carnivores that resemble small bears with bushy tails. They are sought for their fur.
Allowing licensed sportsmen to kill woverines is a direct violation of Montana's state policy of maintaining or restoring populations of rare animals, the conservationists argued in a lawsuit filed on Thursday in state court in Montana.

Federal biologists estimate that between 250 and 300 wolverines remain in the high country of Idaho, Montana, Washington and Wyoming.

The civil court fight comes two years after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service moved to protect wolverines because warming climates threaten the mountain snows they use for dens and food storage. A final decision on whether wolverines are granted threatened or endangered status was expected by 2014.

In Montana, trappers each year are allowed to catch five wolverines - reduced from 10 in 2008.
The lawsuit was filed on Thursday by Alliance for the Wild Rockies and seven other conservation groups is an effort to stop trapping altogether in Montana. Ron Aasheim, spokesman for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, said state wildlife managers believe the trapping each year of five wolverines is sustainable. He said the state halved the trapping quota in recognition that "we needed to do some things to ensure long-term viability."

Michael Garrity, head of Alliance for the Wild Rockies, said scaling back the harvest was not sufficient. "The state doesn't want to admit wolverines are almost extinct," he said.
Wolverines are known for their voracious appetites and cantankerous dispositions. Their solitary nature and their preference for extreme alpine environments have made it difficult for scientists to estimate population numbers.

Climate change is predicted to reduce suitable wolverine habitat in the lower 48 states by 23 percent as of 2045 and by 63 percent as of 2099, according to the University of Washington and the U.S. Forest Service Rocky Mountain Research Station.

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