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Fish & Wildlife Killed the Matriarch of the Profanity Pack: Time to Start Calling

The mission statement for the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife is: “To preserve, protect and perpetuate fish, wildlife and ecosystems while providing sustainable fish and wildlife recreational and commercial opportunities.”

The truth is, it does a lot of killing — of geese every year, of more than 300 mountain goats on the Olympic Peninsula (despite catchy visuals of the luckier goats being transported elsewhere by helicopter) this year — and of wolves on behalf of people who ranch on public land every year lately.

Here’s how it killed another wolf from a helicopter on Friday, according to a Facebook post from the Western Wildlife Council — which rightly points out that on Monday, it’s time to start calling the governer and Fish & Wildlife (numbers below) about releasing this information at 5 p.m. on a Friday. The last wolf expert who stood up to ranchers is out. It’s time for the public to say something.

“Today at 4:57 pm I received an email from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife providing a link to a recent update regarding wolves in Washington State.

Imagine the sounds of helicopter blades cutting the air over these wolves and the crushing feeling of a blast of Buckshot Piercing their skin, breaking their bones incapacitating them until someone arrives to finish them off. This happened today.

In this update that the Department purposely waited until shortly before the close of business to circulate, it stated that they believed they have shot from a helicopter (not so unlike the one pictured below) the Breeding Female of the OPT pack in Northeast Washington in Ferry County.

This makes the current count on wolves killed by this ranching outfit to 18 Wolves for the mere reason that he and his group have refused to accept the best available science and, therefore paid the price by a significant number of cattle being injured.

The method commonly used to dispatch wolves from choppers are using large pelleted buck shot fired from a shot gun to disable the animal until it is later given a kill shot from someone on the ground.

It is appalling that WDFW uses tactics like this to kill our wildlife that reside on our public lands for the sake of cows that do nothing but damage these fragile ecosystems.

Since WDFW waited until nearly 5:00 pm to release the information in the hopes advocates will calm down a bit and not call in to their offices disrupting their phone services, I think it is time to organize a call in Monday through Wednesday of this next week to the Governors Office and to WDFW ( ALL OFFICES) and keep calling!!

You See, it’s not just the wolf activity they are monitoring. It’s your reaction!!

Governors Office Number 1-360-902-4111

WDFW 1-360-902-2200

Please also email director Susewind at director@dfw.wa.gov

Please also direct phone calls to Donny Moterello and WDFW’s Region 1 Office @ (509) 892-1001

It’s Time to truly roll up our sleeves!!

Picture of Profanity Wolf Below”

Image may contain: outdoor and nature

 

How to Help the Orcas

Photo by Christopher Michel used under Creative Commons license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Photo by Christopher Michel used under Creative Commons license: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

The Puget Sound is now in danger of losing a third precious orca. The poor health of the 27-year-old male came to light this week following the recent losses of a baby that lived just minutes and whose lifeless body was carried by her mother for weeks, and subsequent loss of a 3-year old female who was once bursting with health and life.

Resident orca whales need about 385 pounds of fish — preferably chinook — every single day to thrive, and pregnant mothers need even more, according to Lynda V. Mapes’ article in The Seattle Times. So no one should get their hopes up yet about the fact that three resident orcas are pregnant.

What can we do?

For starters, stop eating salmon. You won’t find that advice much, because a big industry has grown up around humans eating (and wasting) salmon. You’ll hear about how complicated it is, about the failure of hatcheries, about where we fish versus where the orcas fish. The bottom line is we eat and waste a whole lot of wild chinook. Let’s leave them — and the oceans — all we can.

Here’s more advice you won’t find much, also because of industry: Vessel noise disrupts the orcas’ ability to fish, so stop or limit your whale watching tours and other boating activities.

Contact your elected officials to demand that the Army Corps of Engineers start breaching four dams on the Lower Snake River for which it now has the authority and funding. The Army Corps will not start work until it hears from Gov. Inslee and Sen. Murray, according to the Orca Network. In the face of political and historical arguments for keeping the dams, it’s important to know that shipping has steadily declined along the waterway the dams create, and “the dams provide only about 5 percent of the region’s power, which today is easily replaced, if it’s needed at all. The dams provide no flood control and irrigation takes place only at Ice Harbor dam, nearest the Columbia,” according to another Lynda V. Mapes article.

Encourage elected officials to prioritize mitigation for climate change and pollution, which the Center for Whale Research points out is a major reason orccas no longer thrive in local waters.

You can take steps personally to mitigate pollution and climate change as well, including limiting water consumption (turn off water while brushing your teeth, limit showers to five minutes), reducing electrical consumption (set thermostats to 68 degrees or less, turn down your hot water heater, unplug rarely used electronics, switch off lights), use unbleached paper products, reuse (glass jars, cloth bags), recycle, avoid extra packaging, buy local and/or organic, limit pesticide use, limit household chemicals, and carpool or, better yet, walk, bike or ride the bus or train.

What Laws Do We Have to Punish This Cat Mutilator/Murderer?

Erik Lacitis’ article in The Seattle Times today about a serial cat mutilator at large in Thurston County reminds me of the pet pit bull who was raped and murdered two years ago in Thurston County.

The rapist, James Leroy Evans, was sentenced to just 12 months behind bars — and should be getting out this month, if my math is right. He can’t own an animal for five years. (You mean he can someday own an animal?)

Why just 12 months for such a heinous crime, especially when the FBI now tracks animal abuse cases in a databse after advocacy from the National Sheriffs Association citing studies and anecdotal evidence that animal abuse is linked with other crimes — for example, with Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, and the “Son of Sam” killer David Berkowitz?

Because our state law prevented prosecutors from being able to prove “sexual intent” in the rape of the sweet pet Diamond in Thurston County. It’s a loophole that allows torment, pain and death to innocent creatures.

A bill sponsored by state Sen. Guy Palumbo, D-Maltby, was not even heard by lawmakers in Olympia this year, according to Pasado’s Safe Haven’s #MissionOfLight.

Let’s hope they catch the cat mutilator and that these heinous crimes lead to more than a year in jail. And if you’re itching to do something, thank Sen. Palumbo for trying this year and encourage him (360-786-7600) and Pasado’s in their efforts.

Help Stop the Dairy Pride Act and Support Milk Alternatives!

Here’s a ridiculous, narrow-interest bill we’d like to defeat on general principle. It flies in the face of common sense and would hurt animals at the same time. Who thinks of these things?

Pasado’s Safe Haven has posted this description and a two-minute action alert that’s worth our time to follow.

“The dairy industry recently introduced the Dairy Pride Act (S.130) which promotes animal products by making it illegal to label non-dairy foods with terms such as ‘milk,’ ‘ice cream,’ and yogurt.’ This not only includes new products, such as almond milk, but also impacts products that have been around for centuries like coconut milk. The dairy industry is responsible for a tremendous amount of animal cruelty, negative environmental impacts, and human-health hazards – and now they are feeling the threat of increasingly conscious consumers. In fact, with more people becoming food aware, all milk should be accurately labeled, including milk produced by cows, which should be labeled as ‘cow milk.’

 “PLEASE TAKE 2 MINUTES to urge your lawmakers to oppose the misguided legislation of the Dairy Pride Act (S.130) and instead require that dairy products also be labeled correctly.”

Pigs Peace Sends Urgent Request for Help

Judy Woods, the founder and primary caregiver at Pigs Peace Sanctuary in Stanwood, has posted an urgent request for help on her website. The big-hearted lover of pigs was badly injured in June , spent time in the hospital and is now recovering but does not expect to be on her feet before winter.

She’s had to turn away rescue pigs, KING-5 reported. “I get 50 to 100 requests per month. I just can’t do it right now.”

Her son, Nathan, said, “No one can replace herThe work she was doing as one person, it’s taking a team of us to just try to fill in those gaps.”

Any donations — or extra shopping at Vegan Haven in Seattle’s U District, which Pigs Peace operates through volunteers — are greatly appreciated right now.

Judy with Honey, from the Pigs Peace website

Judy with Honey, from the Pigs Peace website

Rollback of the Endangered Species Act: Time to Comment

Credit: Courtesy of Dr. Brandon Southall, NMFS/OPR: https://www.flickr.com/photos/51647007@N08/5036399325.

Credit: Courtesy of Dr. Brandon Southall, NMFS/OPR: https://www.flickr.com/photos/51647007@N08/5036399325/.

The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service has opened what it calls “a robust, transparent public process” over proposed changes to the Endangered Species Act, a law that aims to recover “our most imperiled species to the point they no longer need federal protection.”

Curious that Fish & Wildlife considers what it’s doing “robust” and “transparent.” You would think from reading its summation and an accompanying press release that the proposed changes were good for animals. To the contrary. The first clue that something is not robust and transparent comes from the press release: “The Trump Administration is dedicated to being a good neighbor and being a better partner with the communities in which we operate.”

This is an administration that has nominated a Dow Chemical lawyer to oversee the Superfund program, worked hard to open Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to drilling, and foisted the U.S. Army Corp of Engineer to evaluate a prospective gold mine near Bristol Bay over the objections of Alaska’s governor.

Also curious thaty NOAA Assistant Administrator for Fisheries Chris Oliver says the changes are meant to bring “clarity and consistency” to the Endangered Species Act.

NPR’s Nate Rott highlights two of the changes: “The first would end the practice of treating threatened species the same as endangered. This proposal says that threatened species could still get some of those protections as endangered, but it would be determined on a case-by-case basis. It won’t be de facto anymore. The second would allow the economic consequences of a species’ protection to be taken into consideration during a listing. The decision would still ultimately be determined by the best available science, but the cost of that would also be considered.”

Costs and economic consequences balanced against wildlife.

Rott interviewed Collin O’Mara, head of the National Wildlife Federation, who said, “One out of every three wildlife species in this country is either at risk or vulnerable to extinction in the coming century. We have a crisis that we need – that needs solutions. Like, the status quo is basically just managing decline of specie populations that we all care about.”

O’Mara would like to see more resources put into helping wildlife before they’re threatened or endangered, Rott said.

That sounds smart. Let’s do that instead. Here’s where you can comment on the administration’s proposed changes, until September 24.

Here’s a sample comment:

Your summation and press release indicate this would be good for wildlife, while instead it would be good for business. You need to drop this plan and instead (not in addition, but rather instead) work on more and better ways to help wildlife before it’s threatened and/or endangered.

Here’s how public employees with integrity behave: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2016/11/21/resisting-trump-from-inside-the-government

Write to Lawmakers About the Humane Cosmetics Act

The Humane Cosmetics Act (H.R. 2790) is a bipartisan bill in the U.S. House of Representatives’ Energy and Commerce committee that would end cosmetic animal testing by private companies and the federal government.

Cosmetic testing is unnecessary and cruel.

Manufacturers can — and have — used non-animal alternative test methods, and they can — and have — made new products with thousands of ingredients already proven safe.

U.S. companies have already made changes to their testing practices in order to comply with international laws in the European Union, Israel and India to remain competitive in the global market.

Now our country needs to put a stop to cruel and pointless tests for its citizens as well.

Hamsters, cats,

The bipartisan bill is sponsored by Representatives Martha McSally (R-AZ,) Don Beyer (D-VA), Ed Royce (R-CA), Tony Cardenas (D-CA), Frank LoBiondo (R-NJ), and Paul Tonko (D-NY).

The American Anti-Vivisection Society makes it easy to thank your representative for supporting this bill.

Let’s get it passed!

Photo: Jo-Anne McArthur / The Unbound Project

Dairy cows’ beautiful, long-lashed sons are veal calves

As I approached one of Seattle Farmed Animal Save‘s monthly demostrations last year, I started driving by by row after row of plastic huts by the side of the road.

I suspected they were veal crates but, despite having gone vegan largely because of the horrors of the dairy industry (dairy pizza was the last thing I gave up), I didn’t want to believe I was driving right by so many thousands of isolated, suffering calves.

As I drove, I began to look more closely at the farms where the plastic huts were located and, sure enough, they were dairies.

I pulled over and looked inside a hut. What — who —  I saw was heart-wrenching.

(Just look at his eyelashes!)

veal calf at dairy

As I peeked into a crate, the calf inside stood up on wobbly legs, his ear tags showing his recent birthdate. Looking across the top of his and the other veal crates, I could see these calves’ mothers standing nearby.

They were so close.

veal crates at dairy (2)

Many accounts and videos attest to the love cows have for their babies. Like any mother, they want to protect and feed their young. Instead, they are separated soon (sometimes minutes) after birth — even on small dairy farms like this — and their milk is taken for humans. Their daughters become dairy cows and, when their bodies give out, they, like their mothers, are killed for hamburger or pet food.

Their sons become veal.

If you eat cheese, you are directly funding the veal industry.

Mother cows live in a Groundhog Day of unbearable grief. They are forcibly impregnated, frequently on something farmers call a “rape rack,” then have their babies taken from them over and over again.

It’s nothing like the picture we paint of small dairies in childrens’ books, on “happy cow” milk cartons and in our own minds (before we learn the truth). And as a recent Mercy for Animals undercover investigation found, the misery does not end there.

There’s video of workers shoving, dragging, and tossing baby calves; cows suffering from diarrhea and breathing difficulties without proper veterinary care; and cows being kicked and hit. Personally, my heart goes out to anyone who works with the animals in the meat, egg or dairy industries, because of the desensitization they experience in order to make a living.

I believe there’s a continuum of suffering and abuse in animal agriculture and that factory farms are worse than smaller and organic farms. But the calves I saw — who were killed as someone’s meal without ever having known even their own mothers — lived at the “better” end of that spectrum. For what? So we can eat pizza and ice cream that has their mothers’ milk in it?

When I went vegan, I finally turned away from my pizza (and ice cream) by thinking at each temptation of the suffering of nearby cows. Now I can add veal calves to that mental picture, although there are so many tastier alternatives that I’m no longer tempted.

I wish everyone could see what I saw that day along the road, make the connection between the cheese, milk and ice cream they eat and the suffering of these gentle animals, and make a change that would greatly reduce the suffering of innocents in this world.

Tell Feds to Keep Ban on Inhumane Hunting in Alaska

Photo: Berkely Bedell: https://www.flickr.com/photos/50838842@N06/6754978699/

Photo: Berkely Bedell: https://www.flickr.com/photos/50838842@N06/6754978699/

A comment period is now open on a U.S. Interior Department plan to allow hunters in Alaska to:

  • Bait bears with bacon and doughnuts.
  • Use spotlights to shoot mother black bears and cubs hibernating in their dens.
  • Hunt black bears with dogs.
  • Kill wolves and pups in their dens.
  • Use motor boats to shoot swimming caribou.

Among other things, the Associated Press and others report. It’s hard to believe these things were ever legal on wildlife preserves, but they were until 2015 — and will be again unless the Interior Department reverses course.

Alaska’s Division of Wildlife Conservation is on board, saying this would align regulations on almost 37,000 square miles of national preserves with state rules — although the Fairbanks Daily News Miner reports that the latter three practices (hunting bears with dogs, killing wolves in their dens, and shooting caribou from boats) are legal in only a small part of Alaska. If all of this rings a bell, it may be because Congress and Donald Trump last year enacted a law allowing unsportsmanlike hunting on wildlife refuges, including shooting bears and wolves from airplanes.

Here’s the link for making a comment the latest  measure. Please leave at least a short one. Silence is dangerous.

Gratitude, Sorrow for Wolf Researcher Who’s Out at WSU

The Seattle Times reports that wolf researcher Robert Wielgus has accepted a $300,000 settlement from Washington State University and has left the school.

“Wielgus tracked the behavior of wolves and cattle and learned that the state’s policy of killing wolves that had preyed on cattle was likely to lead to more cattle predation, not less, because it destabilized the structure of wolf packs,” reporter Lynda Mapes wrote.

“The research was unpopular with ranchers, who complained to lawmakers in the Washington State Legislature, who, in turn, cut Wielgus’ funding and removed him as principal investigator on his ongoing work, passing the funds through another researcher. It was a highly unusual move that eliminated Wielgus’ money for travel, speaking at conferences or for research in the summer, the peak field months for his work.”

Wielgus filed a lawsuit against WSU saying he was silenced for political reasons — a lawsuit that ends with this settlement. More information from Wielgus, including a video, is posted at Protecting Employees Who Protect Our Environment (PEER).
We remember when he spoke out about the practices of one rancher, for whom the state has killed wolves in the Profanity Peak, Wedge and Sherman packs — and how he went silent after that — and express our thanks for the wolf research he did with integrity and our sadness that he’s no longer doing that research at WSU.