During the so-called “hearings” in the Wisconsin Legislature on AB 502/SB 411 all we heard from Scott Suder and the other “authors” of the bills were that the wolf population in Wisconsin was “burgeoning” and “exploding.” Here is what bill “authors” Scott Suder and Roger Rivard had to say after the wolf kill bill was signed into law:
“With the signing of this bill, which had bipartisan support, we will now have the tools in place to manage the state’s burgeoning wolf population. Working with the DNR, we should have a hunting and trapping season in place by October. This bill is a victory for sportsmen, farmers and landowners,” said Suder.
“The ever-growing wolf population has been a constant problem in several areas of the state, including mine,” said Rivard. “The DNR now has the proper tools to address the wolf population and ensure that it is maintained to federal standards while also maintaining the safety and livelihood of Wisconsin residents.”
“As the number of gray wolves in Wisconsin exploded, so did the number of incidents involving farmer’s livestock, pets and hunting dogs. In 2010 alone, more than 30 pets and hunting animals were attacked by gray wolves, costing the state about $200,000 in wolf depredation costs.”
“Senator Moulton, Representative Rivard and I worked with sportsmens groups, hunting groups, outdoor enthusiasts, landowners and the Department of Natural Resources in developing this legislation. It allows the Department to set up a wolf management season and with the help of licensed hunters, we will be able to reduce the current wolf population to a healthier, more sustainable number,” said Suder.
“By signing this bill, Governor Walker confirmed that we will control our wolf population at the state level. We are thankful for the Governor’s support of the bill and his dedication to maintain Wisconsin’s proud tradition of hunting and sporting heritage.”
At least they didn’t say that the wolves would be “marinated” like fellow bill “author” Joel “Ribeye” Kleefisch put out in a press release. I wonder who those “outdoor enthusiasts,” and “landowners” were that they worked with?
What these two hunter and trapper shills neglect to mention is that the bill was written by the Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association and their seven lawyers according to this article:
“Scott Meyer, a member of the Bear Hunters Association and lobbyist for United Sportsman, went even further. He said, “”Seven attorneys were involved with drafting this bill to make sure it didn’t put delisting in jeopardy. The bill is not liberal enough, but unfortunately, these are the cards we’ve been dealt. The idea that we’re going to extirpate the wolves is ludicrous.”
24 hour a day hunting for four and a half months, trapping, the use of dogs, bait, and electronic calls is not “liberal enough” for the Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association. Are these the people you want writing laws and deciding what happens to our wildlife?
Then comes this little bit of news that puts a damper on their claims of a “burgeoning” and “exploding” wolf population in Wisconsin:
“Wisconsin’s wolf population stayed about the same over the last year, according to a preliminary estimate from the Department of Natural Resources.
The state’s wolf population was estimated at between 762 and 832 animals in 204 packs over the winter of 2011-’12. The previous winter’s estimate was 782 to 824 wolves in 203 packs.”
But of course the DNR and a representative from the deceptively named hunting group the Wisconsin Wildlife Federation are trying to downplay these numbers as “minimums” so that the kill fest can commence this fall. There is also the issue of a minimum of 25 wolves who were killed illegally. Gee, I wonder if any of those poachers were caught?
“We always remind people that this is a minimum estimate,” said Kurt Thiede, administrator of the DNR’s Land Division. “The range is fairly wide, too, but the next steps will compare the tracking information with telemetry information and will help fine tune it.”
“The conditions weren’t ideal, that’s true,” said Ralph Fritsch of the Wisconsin Wildilfe Federation. “We also discussed the possibility that fewer volunteer trackers participated this winter.”
They just cannot admit that wolf numbers are staying the same or decreasing naturally so that their slaughter can begin in October and run until the end of February.
If we do not stand up and speak out about the misinformation that people like Suder, Rivard, and like minded hunting groups spread, our wolves will be on the road to a second extermination starting this fall.