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Author Topic: Help end Alaska's aerial gunning of wolves
Snaggy

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Icon 4 posted October 21, 2008 12:37      Profile for Snaggy   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
FW'd to me. At least some good might come from Palin's nomination?

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I know that a lot of you care about animals...Woz

Aerial hunting of wolves is Alaska's dirty secret. Despite federal law that bans the use of aircraft to shoot or harass animals from the air, Alaska continues to exploit a loophole that allows states to "administer" wildlife using aircraft.
Tell Governor Palin to stop exploiting loopholes and start protecting Alaska's majestic wildlife

http://www.care2.com/go/z/e/AbGAY/WYa5/AQVHr

In exploiting this loophole, the state of Alaska allows private hunters and private pilots to "control" wolves from the air or chase them to exhaustion and shoot them from the ground. The hunters are allowed to keep the pelts as trophies or sell them for profit instead of turning them over to wildlife officials.

This spring, Governor Palin went so far as to offer a reward of $150 for each left foreleg of wolves killed within designated areas. A state court identified this as a bounty, which is illegal under state law, and halted the program before any bounties were paid.

It's time for Alaska to end this brutal practice once and for all. Take action today, and let Governor Palin know how much you oppose aerial hunting of wolves
Thanks for taking action!

Natasha
Care2 Campaign Team

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Grummash

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Icon 1 posted October 21, 2008 23:56      Profile for Grummash     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I've signed.

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...and yet, across the gulf of space, minds immeasurably superior to ours regarded this earth with envious eyes...

Posts: 2335 | From: Lancashire,UK | Registered: Aug 2005  |  IP: Logged
Oz, the Wizard of
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Icon 1 posted October 23, 2008 17:43      Profile for Oz, the Wizard of   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I have to give the obligatory Alaskan "if we don't manage wolf populations somehow then they eat all the moose, then suffer slow painful starving deaths." It's an ugly thing, I know, but there is a legitimate need here, not just a bunch of sport killing for fun (and profit).

Now that that's taken care of, we can all go back to disliking Palin for the way she's doing it. Lord knows I certainly don't like her.

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Posts: 707 | From: The Emerald City | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
MacManKrisK

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Icon 1 posted October 23, 2008 19:46      Profile for MacManKrisK     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
OMG! It's Oz K. Fodrodski!

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get rich and you still die"


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Stereo

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Icon 2 posted October 24, 2008 07:25      Profile for Stereo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Oz, the Wizard of:
I have to give the obligatory Alaskan "if we don't manage wolf populations somehow then they eat all the moose, then suffer slow painful starving deaths."

Yet, this is the way nature has to manage animal population. And it has done a better job than when humans tries to do it their way.

The trouble is, too often, big predators are chased so there are more of their preys available for "sportive" hunting. The "animal regulation" excuse is just that. But not enough woolves leads to too many mooses, which then overeat their own food source, leading to slow and painful death... So what about having someone decide how many moose/deers/other can be chased based on the overall animal populations (predators and preys) in a given area, even if it means a "no hunting this season" every once in a while? One could kill wichever animal threatens their herds/crops (sign of imbalance), but nothing more.

Unless, of course, if you want to have the same problem as some European areas where many predators were chased to the brink of extinction. Only when they saw the deers eating their crops did the local population understood the need for the predators, and tried (still are trying) very hard to reintroduce them.

It's much cheaper to let Mother Nature have her ways. (Life ain't pretty - live with it.)

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Eppur, si muove!

Galileo Galilei

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted October 24, 2008 08:11      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
There's a very informative, if somewhat long, article on Salon.com

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Posts: 6364 | From: Tennessee | Registered: Jan 2000  |  IP: Logged
Oz, the Wizard of
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Icon 1 posted October 24, 2008 14:40      Profile for Oz, the Wizard of   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Stereo:
It's much cheaper to let Mother Nature have her ways. (Life ain't pretty - live with it.)

There is, of course, a natural ebb and flow to animal populations in any unregulated ecosystem. The reasons for predator control in Alaska are largely tied to sport and subsistence hunting -- practices that many outside observers would insist should be the first things to go (and would vilify me, in particular, for daring to have moose in my freezer). Indeed, when debating predator control as it is portrayed outside the state (and don't get me wrong, but external outfits, the "Friends of Animals" in particular, love to portray it in the "Alaskans just like to murder wolves because it's the only way they can have an orgasm" light), it's hard to defend under any circumstances.

Speaking as an Alaskan, however, I can say with all confidence that our population of wolves is healthy. Besides; I really think the killing of a handful of wolves and ungulates is a far more environmentally sound method of harvesting meat than, say, knocking down a square mile of rainforest in favor of a herd of cows.

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Cap'n Vic

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Icon 1 posted October 24, 2008 15:42      Profile for Cap'n Vic     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Word Oz. While I'm personally not in favour of the wolf kill southerners should educate themselves on how people live in the north in particular native people who still rely on (and prefer) wild game.

Fer instance, my freezer has bison and caribou in it this very moment and while I'm not a hunter a friend and I bartered those items, he got salmon in return.

If you really think about it, would you rather eat a wild, free range animal or a farm grown chemically fed cow or pig that has been locked in a cage most of its life?

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(!) (T) = 8-D

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Stereo

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Icon 1 posted October 24, 2008 17:09      Profile for Stereo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Oz, the Wizard of:
quote:
Originally posted by Stereo:
It's much cheaper to let Mother Nature have her ways. (Life ain't pretty - live with it.)

There is, of course, a natural ebb and flow to animal populations in any unregulated ecosystem. The reasons for predator control in Alaska are largely tied to sport and subsistence hunting (...)
I've got nothing against subsistence hunting. Humans have been doing it for as long as it has walked the earth; that's part of nature, too. So go for it. But when wolves killing is there to please the so-called "sportive" hunting (the one I mentioned in my first post, the one where the animal is mostly left to rot after the trophy was chopped off), that's what I oppose. And that's what is going on.

Don't mistake me, I am definitely not of the "animals deserve human treatment" kind. I am of the scientific kind who would rather rely on science - and be wary of disturbing a balance that held true for millennia - over money coming from interest groups. If you haven't done so, go read the article Steen have linked. It tells a lot about the real reason for the Alaskan wolf-killing.

And please, do remember: when an ecosystem that have been over-used (like what would happen if there were too few wolves, and consequently too many moose/elk/other grazers) can take many years to recover. All those years, the native and non-native population will have trouble hunting for subsistence. (That is, if people don't throw it off into greater imbalance while trying to survive, until they reach the no-return point.)

All the while, isn't Palin in favor of oil-drilling in natural reserves?

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Eppur, si muove!

Galileo Galilei

Posts: 2289 | From: Gatineau, Quebec, Canada | Registered: Apr 2001  |  IP: Logged
Oz, the Wizard of
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Icon 1 posted October 24, 2008 17:34      Profile for Oz, the Wizard of   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Let me be clear on my feelings for Palin: she's a fucking whackjob, who enjoys high popularity in the state only because she is slightly less of a fucking whackjob than our previous governor.

As for the science, while I agree that airborne killing is unnecessary, my reading suggests that, in the interest of keeping populations stable (that is, equilibrium between predators, prey, and available grazing land), some form of predator control is required. Killing is not always the response: in the past, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game has gone so far as to perform in-the-field vasectomies and tube-ties on wolves to manage population.

And although I hate to sound like some sort of Alaska-first prat (especially considering the joke that being Alaskan has become), but the referenced Alaska Outdoor Council (from the article) is an in-state organization, where Friends of Animals is based in Connecticut. Though you may find some division on the methods of wolf control in the state, Alaskans as a whole don't take very kindly to people from "outside" creating ballot measures or trying to dictate policy, regardless of any scientific basis. The people need to decide to change -- prodding them just makes them resist.

( For the sake of full disclosure, I am the son of a ADF&G public information officer, but I do try to keep up on my reading with regards to this topic. [Wink] )

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Posts: 707 | From: The Emerald City | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Oz, the Wizard of
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Icon 1 posted October 24, 2008 17:39      Profile for Oz, the Wizard of   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
And Stereo, know that I appreciate having a reasoned and civil debate on this topic, rather than a mere ping-pong game between extremes. Indeed, I've heard some anti-Wolf Control folk go so far as to proclaim that they'd rather have Alaska's native villages starve entire than a single wolf be killed, while redneck maniacs similarly cry that they'd like to kill all wolves.

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted October 24, 2008 20:03      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I think the biggest problem that most people have is summed up well by this quote*:
For most of us, the idea of zooming around in a private airplane over snowbound wilderness just for the chance to spot a terrified wild dog and blow it apart with a high-powered rifle is insane.

It's not the control of the wolf population that is the issue. It's the method.


*I'm not going to link the source because the rest of the article was pretty much a rant about how Alaskan Republicans are evil and greedy.

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Grummash

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Icon 1 posted October 25, 2008 14:40      Profile for Grummash     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by GrumpySteen:
It's not the control of the wolf population that is the issue. It's the method.

Damn right. If it was really about population control, then there should be a state controlled team of people doing the job as humanely a possible.

No need for private hunters and fee-paying cruelty-tourists killing for pleasure.

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The Famous Druid

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Icon 1 posted October 25, 2008 15:58      Profile for The Famous Druid     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Grummash:
Damn right. If it was really about population control, then there should be a state controlled team of people doing the job as humanely a possible.

Plus, in a genuine scientific predator-control program, the choice of which animal to kill is important. Age, sex, and general physical condition are all factors taken into account in deciding which animals to cull, none of these are easily evaluated while hanging out the door of a helicopter.

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If you watch 'The History Of NASA' backwards, it's about a space agency that has no manned spaceflight capability, then does low-orbit flights, then lands on the Moon.

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