From the Herald & News Guest Commentary:
Posted: Sunday, April 13, 2014 12:00 am
I have lived in the Pacific Northwest for most of my life, and during the past 28 years I have seen radical environmentalism devastate our once thriving communities.
It started in 1986, and by 1990 environmentalists, basically lawyers getting rich using junk science, manipulated the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service through the courts to get the Spotted Owl listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act of 1973.
They have continued to extort the federal government using the ESA and the revised, retroactive Equal Access to Justice Act of 1985 by getting the coho salmon, and Lost River and Short Nosed suckers listed. As a result, the loss of irrigation water in 2001 cost Basin agriculture over $35 million while fish and owl numbers continue to decline under the science and careful watch of the USFWS.
Now we have the “endangered” Canadian Gray Wolf knocking on our doorstop. This non-native wolf (canis lupus occidentalis) that historically never lived in the Pacific Northwest; or in Idaho, Montana or Wyoming has devastated most of the elk herds and eliminated the moose populations of Yellowstone Park and has bankrupted many small ranchers.
Wolves were not extinct in the northern U.S. There is concrete evidence of existing wolf populations (canis lupus nubilus) that was suppressed by the USFWS. The legality of the reintroduction was based on there being no wolves in the reintroduction area.
There were 19,000 elk in the Yellowstone herd in 1995 when the Canadian Gray Wolf was introduced. The total number of elk in the herd is now less than 4,000. The moose population was 1,500 in 1995; it is now considered non-existent, zero moose.
Apparently the wolves that are touted as “nature’s sanitarians” by environmentalists and only kill the weak and sick, decided all of the moose and 15,000 elk were not healthy!