Friday, September 28, 2007

The feds continue to wolf down ranchers for lunch

Some things just are too crazy for words. An Ennis rancher who has "hundreds of thousands of dollars as he tried to find ways for cattle and wolves to coexist on his Madison Valley ranch" has run afoul of the federal Endangered Species Act.

It gets better. He had been authorized to kill two adult wolves in the pack that had settled down in his neighborhood to enjoy convenient meals of beef.

His employees mistakenly killed a pup (judging the age or size of a wolf from a distance isn't necessarily all that easy,) and then killed a female wolf in an admittedly messy fashion -- but sometimes killing things gets messy, especially when you want to make sure that wounded animals get finished off. But they were told they could kill two wolves and killed two, and no more.

But that's not the best part. As it turns out, the feds ended up killing every wolf in the troublesome pack.

So the poor guy is being cited for killing two wolves that would have been killed by the feds anyway.

Once wolves are delisted and the feds are gone, they will be completely under the management of the Montana FWP -- and it can't happen soon enough. While FWP management will also have its problems, ranchers will presumably have better luck getting fair treatment and reasonable responsiveness from their fellow Montanans.

1 comment:

Nell said...

I, too, found it ironic that the story said he had spent "hundreds of thousands of dollars" to try to live peacefully with the wolves.

I will admit that there are many ranchers in Montana who see no point in trying to coexist at all. They see wolves as a dangerous wild animal who causes them to lose money.

For some reason this guy decided that it was worth it to spend a considerable about of energy - and resources - to work together and how was he rewarded?

It should be no surprise that wolves would continue to attack livestock and the government would have their head so far in the sand that they couldn't see the obvious truth here.

Kinda makes me understand what my grandpa said when he would mutter "just shoot, shovel, and shut up."