By Jack Parker *
The original title of this article was simply "MORON wolf regulations," but the Editor considered that to be indelicate so we modified it, thus illustrating the Power of the Press.
That original title wasn’t a typo. Just a spontaneous comment.
But first here’s a thank you for Nancy Warren and her tireless efforts to keep us informed about wolves and the attempts to "manage" them. Her latest contribution in Keweenaw Now, concerning the wolf depredations described in a Detroit Free Press article that is no longer available on line, should pave the way to better legislation. At the same time I thank her for bringing to us Rory Linnane’s similar observations from the Wisconsin front.**
The time has come, as they used to say, to stop playing this silly political game and to throw the bastards out of office, then to replace them with honest individuals. I will expand upon that proposal very soon -- before they do more damage.
Google, always sniffing the wind, has acknowledged the commercial connections already by inserting an ad on my screen, as follows: "A Thermal Rifle 'Scope for $3995." The connections are that obvious.
I find no fault with Nancy’s opinion but would like to reinforce it. If anything she is too gentle with the brutal facts. I quote from her and the DNR that during the period 2010-2012 48 percent of the UP depredations occurred on one farm, the John Koski farm near Matchwood.
If you can find the report by specialist Brian Roell you will see that the depredations have been going on for years, and DNR knows it and has supported it and, according to Mr Koski, who holds the record, he has had more than 119 cattle killed or injured by wolves in the past three years. Government-paid trappers and shooters "have killed dozens of the wolves." You must agree that lethal measures have done little to discourage the wolves -- explained by a photograph in the FREEP (Detroit Free Press) article showing cattle carcasses left in the field for months -- an obvious invitation to the feast. That is illegal.
I think that you will come away from that report, (which Nancy paid for, thru the DEQ FOIA program) understanding that Brian wrote a good, honest report but that his "superiors" hid it, covered it up -- and used the staged depredations for their own evil political purposes -- to arouse public fears and hatred against the critters -- and to promote wolf hunting. You will see that paying people to shoot wolves did not stop the predation.
So the Koski farm shoots a big hole in the promoters’ arguments. Forty eight percent of them. Not done yet. Another large bunch of complaints, favored especially by Mr. Casperson, came from around Ironwood. The wolves are not to be faulted there either. They were lured into the city by well-meaning folks who fed the deer -- which were followed by their natural predator. I have heard of no tickets for baiting. How many wolves were shot because of those misdeeds? More than a dozen.
Dog depredation, incorrectly reported to have taken place "in Atlantic Mine," was the other big headline. However, very little was said about two of the dogs running loose in wolf habitat.
That’s enough for now, I think. It serves to illustrate the lying tactics used to support the plans of the wolf hunters and those who would exploit and profit by it -- and the fact that they are not suited for public office.
Next I would like to examine how much expertise has gone into Michigan wolf management. The legislators, from the governor on down, wouldn’t know a wolf for sure if attacked by a large sharp-eared, bushy-tailed canine, and are far from familiar with world-wide research literature. Am sure that a four-hour written test could be arranged before hiring. A good place to start would be the NRC (Natural Resources Commission) -- a seven-piece sample. A sample question: How many Michigan wolves are killed illegally every year? Don’t forget those which were targeted after Mr K failed to protect his cattle.
Surely we should also examine the mind set of persons who kill for fun, such as those who consider that baiting and trapping followed by gang-style execution constitutes "sport." They should be locked up. That will come later.
* Keweenaw Now guest author Jack Parker is from Toivola, Michigan.
** This article is a commentary on our June 27, 2013, article, "Opinion: Nearly half of wolf depredations attributed to one farm with poor animal husbandry practices," by Nancy Warren, National Wolfwatcher Coalition Great Lakes regional director.