More and more we are seeing a growing core of people who are pushing back against the preachers of anti-wolf rhetoric that is based on myth and fear, and using facts and available research to formulate and express their opinions. Also encouraging is that more papers are starting to print these opinions and hopefully both represent a pronounced shift in acceptance of wolves as a permanent fixture on America's landscape. First is a compelling look at the term "vicious" as it is applied to wolves despite viciousness being a human quality. Followed by published research based on a study of how many livestock depredations are caused by wild dog vs those of wolves.
As many of you already know, we have been asking people from all across America to sign our petition letting Cabela's know that their sponsorship of "predator derbies" in Idaho was unsportsmanlike and irresponsible. We have received an overwhelming response and have over 200,000 signatures to date!
Unfortunately, we've encountered some obstacles while trying get the attention of Cabela's in order to show them that the sponsorship of predator derbies (the proceeds of which went directly to support anti-wolf litigation) is irresponsible and wrong.
After the Sidney Sun-Telegraph (the local newspaper where Cabela’s headquarters is located) refused to run our ad, many of you suggested we take out an ad in Nebraska’s biggest paper, the Omaha World Herald (good idea, guys) – but they refused it, too.
And just minutes ago, the Kearney Hub (where one of Cabela’s biggest stores is located) told us that “after looking over the content of your ad, we will not be running this in our newspaper.”
We won’t stand for censorship when it comes to protecting wolves from slaughter. And we hope you’ll stand with us.
Many of you have taken matters into your own hands. - from phone calls, to emails , to returning merchandise to holding a rally. In fact, one of our supporters named Bob G. from Maine read about the derbies on the Defenders of Wildlife website is holding a rally outside of the Portland Cabela's store tomorrow at 11am.
Thanks to your support, we’re still intending to run our hard-hitting ad in the Kearney in the Lincoln Journal-Star on Wednesday, February 24th.
For most of us Valentine’s Day represents cards, sweets and celebrations of love but did you know that February 14thalso marks a major festival in ancient Rome named in honor of wolves? The festival Lupercalia was held during the peak breeding season for wolves. Wolves only breed once a year and typically only the pack leaders produce the pack’s single litter of pups. The breeding season extends over February with the breeding pair exhibiting courtship rites (e.g. playing, howling together, physical bonding, etc) throughout the process. The alpha female gives birth about 63 days after she becomes pregnant. Born blind and helpless, the whole pack cares for the youngsters until they’re old enough to hunt on their own at about 10 months of age. So, perhaps do a little howling yourself this Valentines Day in honor of our wild friends.
Defenders of Wildlife has created a petition that I’m hoping you will sign. This petition is a direct ask to Cabela’s and Sportsman Warehouse, two major outdoor retailers, to revoke any continued sponsorship of predator derbies. Idaho recently held three of these derbies in which wolves, bobcats, coyotes, and other predators were assigned a point value (wolves were the only animal worth three points, everything else was two) and hunted down in a one day killing competition from which the $50 entrence fees went towards funding the anti-wolf lawyers and lobbyists who are working to keep the Northern Rockies wolves off the endangered species list.
Please visit Defenders of Wildlife’s Facebook page and take action!
Do you remember? I know where we were because 15 years ago today, Defenders of Wildlife and all of our supporters were watching the first wolves being reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park. It's been an amazing 15 years watching those wolves grow and expand throughout the region as they regain their rightful place and restore balance to the Yellowstone ecosystem. Since that day, we here at Defenders have worked extensively to cultivate on the ground relationships with ranchers, state wildlife managers, stakeholders and citizens in the Northern Rockies area to help find ways for wolves and humans to live in harmony. Check out some of our accomplishments over the last 15 years here!
It's been an amazing journey since the first wolf returned to Yellowstone in 1995 and we have made great strides in our efforts to help these animals find acceptance and tolerance. But there is still so much work to be done as we continue to fight for a sustainable population of wolves in the region that is managed based on sound scientific reasoning rather than the politicized, illegal plans that are in place today. Thank you so much for all your help and support over the last 15 years!
Wolf Photo in Top Banner:
© Michael Quinton, National Geographic Stock