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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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Wednesday, December 7, 2016

While California Wildlife Officials are by far the most forward-thinking and acting in the USA regarding the management of Carnivores(no hunting of Pumas/Coyotes and trapping of Bobcats), their just released final plan on how Wolves will be treated falls under the heading of "1 giant step forward, 2 sizable steps back" .............."Many of you will note the fact that in August 2015 state wildlife officials confirmed the establishment of California’s first wolf family in nearly a century---The Shasta pack in Northern California’s Siskiyou County".............. "And just last month, a pair of wolves was confirmed in western Lassen County"............ "DNA-testing of scat collected from the pair shows that the male is a young adult from one of OR-7’s litters(see article on OR 7 biography), while the female is of unknown origin".................Following is the concern of many noted Wolf biologists as it relates to the new mgmt. plan------"The plan proposes a phased management approach, in which establishment of four wolf packs for two consecutive years will trigger consideration of more aggressive management of conflicts".............." After establishment of eight wolf packs for two consecutive years, management actions will become even less protective of wolves"................. "Conservation groups say the reduced protections come too quickly under the plan, and call for an ongoing emphasis on time-proven, research-based nonlethal measures to minimize conflicts with livestock"


California Wolf Plan
 Road Map for
 Conserving Small
Two Breeding Pairs for 
Straight Years 
Could Trigger Reduced 

SAN FRANCISCO— The California Department of Fish and
 Wildlife has released its final plan to guide conservation
 and management of a small population of gray wolves
 well into the future. One of the strengths of the plan,
 which was released late Tuesday, is its emphasis
 on nonlethal methods to deter conflicts with livestock. 
But it would also seek to reduce wolves’ federal
 protection status from “endangered” to “threatened”
 when the population reaches a threshold of only two 
breeding pairs for two consecutive years — far fewer
 than what independent scientists say is needed for a
 secure population.

OR7-the Oregon Wolf who first prospected into California

In response to public comments on the proposed wolf plan,
 the agency stepped back from plans to initiate delisting of
 wolves once their population reached only 50 to 75 
wolves. The agency also included in the final plan
 additional, current, best available scientific literature on
 key issues such as the vital ecological role of wolves.

March 21, 2016 of Wolf spotted in Lassen County, Calif

Lassen Cty Pack location(note Oregon is just north of
Calif. state line and is thus far the source population for
the two Calif. packs

But conservation groups say the final plan should have
 included specific protections to shield wolves from
 clearly identifiable threats such as being mistaken for
 coyotes during coyote-killing contests. And the plan failed
 to identify key wolf habitat conservation priorities like
 connectivity corridors crucial to building healthy,
sustainable populations — a feature that would benefit
 not only wolves but other California wildlife as well.
The plan also proposes to initiate aggressive
management actions, which could include killing wolves,
 for ungulate population declines “presumed to be
influenced by wolf predation” without a scientific
 assessment to determine if wolves,in fact, are the cause.

“Because California is only in the early stages of wolf
recovery, we need to give these animals a chance to
become established in sustainable numbers rather
than prematurely rushing to end protections that are
vital to their survival,” said Amaroq Weiss, West Coast
 wolf organizer at the Center for Biological Diversity.
 “But we support the plan's initial emphasis on
 restoring wolves to the Golden State and reliance
on nonlethal methods to reduce loss of livestock.”

This month marks the five-year anniversary of the
arrival in California of wolf OR-7, the first known
wild wolf in the state in 87 years. His arrival
 launched the development of a state wolf plan
 with input from a stakeholder group representing
 conservation, ranching and sports-hunting interests.
 OR-7 eventually returned to Oregon, where he
found a mate and has since sired three sets of
 pups. In August 2015 state wildlife officials
 confirmed the establishment of California’s first
 wolf family in nearly a century: the Shasta pack
in Northern California’s Siskiyou County. And just
 last month, a pair of wolves was confirmed in
western Lassen County. DNA-testing of scat
 collected from the pair shows that the male is
a young adult from one of OR-7’s litters, while
 the female is of unknown origin.

“The ongoing arrival of wolves in California is
 cause for celebration and makes the state wolf
 plan’s provisions all the more important,” stated
Kimberly Baker, public land advocate for the
 Environmental Protection Information Center
(EPIC). “Wolf recovery will bring the essence
 of wild back to California and reiterates the
 need for landscape connectivity.”

The plan proposes a phased management
 approach, in which establishment of four wolf
 packs for two consecutive years will trigger
 consideration of more aggressive management
 of conflicts. After establishment of eight wolf
 packs for two consecutive years, management
 actions will become even less protective of
wolves. Conservation groups say the reduced
 protections come too quickly under the plan,
and call for an ongoing emphasis on
 time-proven, research-based nonlethal
 measures to minimize conflicts with livestock.
“It’s exciting that nonlethal methods of reducing
 wolf-livestock conflicts are such a foundational
 element of this plan, because we know they work,”
 said Damon Nagami, a senior attorney in
NRDC’s Land and Wildlife Program. “We want
to give these magnificent animals every possible
chance to survive and thrive here in California.
 So we look forward to working with the
Department to ensure that happens.”

The agency received significant public input
 last year when it released a draft plan for
 public comment. Changes requested included
the need to acknowledge the best available
 current science on managing conflicts, social
 tolerance, the importance of protecting wolves
 from illegal killings, and wolves’ critical
ecological role. During the comment period,
19 conservation organizations submitted a
 joint comment letter on behalf of 2.9 million
 California residents highlighting 27 key
 issues of concern in the draft plan. The
vast majority of Californians wants wolves
 protected and also fully supports the joint
 efforts of the state, conservation groups,
 ranchers and hunters to implement nonlethal
prevention measures.


 Shasta Pack

location of the Shasta Pack in Siskiyou County,
just south of the Oregon/Calif. state line

  • Founded: 2015
  • Range: East of Mt. Shasta
  • Breeding Pair: Yes
  • Pups: 5
  • Pack Structure:
    • 2 Adults
      • “Siskiyou” Male
      • “Shasta” Female
    • 5 Pups
      • Born May, 2015
      • As of Nov. 2015, three pups are confirmed still with the pack
    • This pack passed largely unnoticed until August, 2015. The two adult wolves likely came from Oregon and may have been observed by trail camera in Oregon’s Keno unit in January, 2015. This is a first-generation pack, and the first to produce pups in California in over 90 years. 

    • CDFW first became aware of a black wolf in the Mt. Shasta area earlier this year, and captured trail camera images of what they believed to be the same animal in May and August. Additional trail cameras captured images of five wolf pups in the same area, as well as two adults, believed to be the breeding pair.
    • 11/10/15 CDFW Depredation Report: 1 Calf “Probable”
    • Noteworthy: All seven wolves in this pack are black.
wolf-pups-jpg wolf-2 wolf-1

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