Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thought control campaign - Mexican wolves

One thing that environmental groups still do (besides file lawsuits)
is create excellent propaganda. What's amazing to me is how most of
the media just accepts that baloney as truth. I guess reporters
today don't care about facts, they just repeat what they are fed by
anyone with enough money to do the feeding.

I just came across an article about the transfer of captive bred
Mexican wolves from the Cincinnati Zoo to a wolf preservation
facility in New York State by Jim Knippenberg. Here's a quote from
the article (Cincinnati Enquirer,

"The Mexican gray, a subspecies of the gray wolf, is critically
endangered, reportedly down to only seven animals in the wild in the
early 1980s. The Mexican Wolf Recovery Program, an umbrella
organization that oversees conservation efforts in about 20 zoos and
preserves including Cincinnati, captured the seven, installed them in
controlled facilities and initiated breeding programs. Today, there
are 38-50 in the wild (in the high deserts of northern Mexico and
southern Arizona), 100 more in controlled facilities and several more
ready for release into the wild."

Now what's wrong with the above? First of all, the subspecies is NOT
currently critically endangered; there are hundreds in captivity and
probably close to another hundred in the wild in in the USA, plus who
know how many still in Mexico, where these wolves are from. There
were an unknown number of wild ones in Mexico and the USA in the
1980s, when seven were captured from Mexico and brought north into
the USA (two promptly died). There is no conclusive evidence that
lands north of the US/Mexico border were other than the extreme edge
of these wolves' native Mexican range. There is no more reason for
anyone to be excited about there being no Mexican wolves here in the
wild than it would be to be excited that there are no penguins here.

Next, there currently are 38-50 *collared* Mexican wolves in the wild
in central western New Mexico and eastern Arizona plus an unknown
number of uncollared wolves ( all descendents of those five surviving
wolves from 1980). This information is readily available in the form
of monthly reports online from US Fish & Wildlife (note that
uncollared wolves are only counted once a year, so very little is
known about the numbers). To my knowledge no one is counting wolves
in Mexico itself; maybe Mr. Knippenberg could provide some source for
that info.

Finally, the Mexican wolf program, which routinely handles wolves in
the program and exposes them to human sight, sound and smell (e.g.
zoo and other captive wolf facilities) is creating problem wolves,
ensuring that when they are released into the wild that these wolves
have no fear of humans (they become habituated to humans in
captivity). Hence in places like New Mexico and Arizona we see
increasing numbers of problems with wolves killing pets, stalking
humans and slaughtering livestock. What happens to these wolves with
no fear of humans? They are hazed, are shot with rubber bullets,
routinely and repeatedly trapped (with leg traps, a painful and
traumatic process) - this is the Mexican wolf program doing these
things by the way. Then the wolves are transported to captivity, fed
by humans (and given health exams, vaccinations, collars). They are
then often separated from pack members, released into new places in
the wild to have to relearn where the water is, the hunting is, and
to forge a new place in a new pack. To "help", the program often
temporarily feeds these wolves dumped into the wild meat made from
domestic animals (horses), so that the when they find a horse in a
corral, they know that they've found dinner - starting the cycle all
over again.

A wolf which is so habituated it was sleeping in people's yards and
urinating on vehicle wheels like the family dogs do, has been found
to have spent over one third of its life in captivity or other
proximity to humans - the poor thing was probably lonely for
humans. This is typical of the wolf program and what the program
creates is problem wolves, not wild wolves. Dumping captive raised
wolves into the wild isn't all that different from dumping pet dogs
alongside the road. I've never understood why PETA, of which I am
not a member has not looked carefully at this routine torture and
abuse of animals.

I'm sorry to have picked on Mr. Knippenberg, for he is just one of
many, but it is really starting to get irritating to read these
un-researched articles which purport to tell the truth but really
just perpetuate the propaganda machine of environmental
groups. People who actually care about wolves tell the truth. But
of course, there's no profit in that.

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