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Idaho Fish and Game Report Says Trapped Black Wolf Not Shot, “Just Nicked”

Trappergate Update: Conservation Activists Encouraged. “Our Moment is Coming,” They Say

Why me, Bill” asked “Elizabeth.”. “Why should anyone care about what I think the Bransford photos accomplished?" I’m just a wee, grubby misfit. I don’t even have one fancy title to my name.” Elizabeth (not her real name) lives in northern Idaho. She grasped that the www.Trapperman.com photos showing smiling hunter Josh Bransford with a trapped black wolf standing in blood-drenched snow in the background would soon disappear. She saved the images and through the North Idaho Wolf Alliance network, got the photographs to Earth Island Journal in late March (Read the original story, Wolf Torture and Execution Continues in the Northern Rockies).

Trapperman.comJosh Bransford with the black wolf he trapped.

A light has been released, a light beyond my expectations,” Elizabeth says. “We have many new eyes peering into the gap between the ethical treatment of wildlife and legality in the state of Idaho… Josh Bransford is the face of but one man being used to render wolves functionally extinct region-wide, and since his disturbing actions are legal, officials won’t budge unless we the people demand change.”

Despite the worldwide publicity, the Bransford pictures got little attention in the  Idaho news media for the first two weeks after the story’s release. Bill Ross, a wolf handler at the Wolf People sanctuary in Cocolalla, Idaho, observed, “I don’t think the story’s really gotten off the ground yet. It’s not circulated among the general public here.” Ross fears that Bransford and the black wolf are “today’s news” and that “a week from now it won’t be news anymore.” Still, Ross soldiers on. “It can be discouraging, but if we don’t continue to fight, obviously there won’t be a fight,” he explains.

But Ross and the other Northern Rocky advocates got unexpected help on April 12, when the Idaho Fish and Game Service released its official report on Bransford’s “Wolf Trapping in the Red River area.”  (Bransford is a Nez Perce National Forest employee.)

photo of a man in the foreground kneeling, behind him a wolf is chained by a trap, a circle of bloodstained snow beneathThe photo in question.

While the photograph clearly shows the black wolf standing in a large blood-stained pool of snow, fish and game officials concluded the blood came from “nicks,” not bullets. Moreover, the report says: “the Forest Service officer and the deputy did not observe anyone shoot at the wolf and did not receive any indication that any of the individuals they contacted shot at the wolf.” Thus, since no law enforcement officer saw the wolf shot, and no one confessed to the shooting, then the wolf simply suffered “nicks” to its lower hind legs, and the nicks bled.

The report ignores Bransford’s own blog account about the incident on Trapperman: “I got a call on Sunday morning from a FS [Forrest Service] cop that I know. He said that You got one and you better get up here as there was a crowd forming. Several guys had stopped and taken a shot at him already! Lucky they were not real good shots.”   Bransford, writing under the name “Pinching,” explains that once on the scene he talked to the boys who fired: “I was not mad, and when the boys told me the story I kind of chuckled... I would have done the same I think. They also did go out of there (sic) way to make sure I was called, and they didn’t hide from what they were doing.”  

There’s also a serious problem between the report’s conclusion and the pictures of the black wolf. Gary MacFarlane, Ecosystem Defense Director, of northern Idaho’s Friends of the Clearwater, contends that only two possible circumstances could lead to a wolf’s losing so much blood. One, the wolf could be shot. Second, the wolf could have tried to chew off its trapped leg.  But look at the photo of the wolf’s paw caught in Bransford’s trap. “It doesn’t look like the animal is trying to chew off its leg,” he says. “Somebody is lying. There’s a contradiction in the accounts.”

photo of a wolf paw caught in a metal trap, bloody snow beneathThe wolf's paw in caught in Bransford's trap.

But who is lying, and why?  Why would Josh Bransford, aka “Pinching,” lie in his Trapperman blog post when he’s the hero of his own story, and no controversy had yet broken out? “It certainly seems like a cover-up,” MacFarlane concludes. “They’re trying to shove this under the rug. The hole Idaho Fish and Game’s digging keeps getting bigger and deeper. The longer this goes on, the better. Our movement’s moment for vindication is coming.”

Unraveling a cover-up by the Idaho Fish and Game, and perhaps other parties (the US Forest Service is conducting its own review in Washington, D.C.) might open new possibilities for the conservation movement. The photographs have already inflamed parts of the public. Wendy Keefover, Carnivore Protection Director for the WildEarth Guardians, told me: “Bill, when your blog came out, it generated international attention. The amount of attention that wolf generated shows that people can empathize with the suffering of another being. It created outrage.”  Michael Robinson from the Center of Biological Diversity (CBD) concurs. “ When people see unspeakable cruelty practiced, they can rise up and government can be responsive,” he says.

Clearly the photos and Idaho’s bizarre report show the limits of state management. “The state of Idaho can’t be trusted to manage an iconic predator like the wolf. The western states aren’t sensitive to wild animals and they’ve regressed in the last 25 years. The Endangered Species Act is necessary,” says Gary MacFarlane. Michael Robinson adds: “People pick up a lot of the clues for normalcy and decency from the top levels of institutions. The Bransford incident and Idaho’s new report give us a window into how the state of Idaho’s extreme rhetoric has been transformed into action. It shows how the ESA [Endangered Species Act] and federal management really is necessary to have a broad recovery of species.”  

The Center for Biological Diversity is currently deliberating whether to appeal the Ninth Circuit’s decision upholding the 2011 Congressional delisting of wolves.  CBD activists are also investigating whether to begin a national political campaign to repeal the delisting by mobilizing public support for wild animals. In Robinson’s assessment: “We’re under no illusions that the current Congress will repeal its own act, but we’ll see what future Congresses look like. Congress can respond if the public really pushes.”

Read James William Gibson’s writings at jameswilliamgibson.com

James William Gibson
James William Gibson writes regularly for Earth Island Journal. Among his books is The Perfect War: Technowar in Vietnam (1986).

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Comments

This idiot is a heartless bastard!!! I wish someone would put him in a wood chipper feet first!!! He is the devil himself!!! I wonder how he wood feel if someone put his kids feet in a trap because our human population is way too high??? Maybe he might as well go and put on a black cape and hood and join a satanic church as high priest!!! Go die and rot in hell dude!!!

By Stacie on Tue, March 11, 2014 at 8:15 pm

All right, enough is enough. Stop playing games and keep the wildlife, including wolves protected. Do the right things for the future. No more hunting.

By Michael Guest on Tue, January 21, 2014 at 5:28 pm

Always impressed to hear the eloquence of the “Kill all the wolves” people. Ignorance and cruelty walk hand in hand, at least thats always what I see in the wolf killers photos.
Wildlife management…. such an interesting concept, such is the arrogance of man.
Wildlife services is nothing more than a tax funded killing agency, with the rest of their budget funded by special interest. And special interest is the culprit behind the excessive and vile wolf killing.
If wolf numbers need to be controlled, here is the voice of reason from someone who gets it.
” You have to feel remorse for the beautiful animal you have just culled. If you don’t feel remorse, you are just a killing machine.” - sorry I cannot provide his name, he is a sharpshooter for wildlife control.
These wolf killers are nothing more than violent killing machines, for any of them to even speak the word “conservation” is a joke. Using recordings to lure wolves out of Yellowstone, trapping and joking about the animals suffering, really despicable people. Ghoulish and unevolved, posing with their victims. Cases of DOGS shot ON PURPOSE by these thugs. I have many more pathetic examples of despicable , so called hunters.
The wolves HAVE a place. I am sick of hunters whining about elk herds and other prey animals, when we all know those numbers are strong, they simply want to kill those animals themselves.
Controlling numbers is one thing, but these disgusting killing contests and underhanded, vicious wolf slaughter is something else again.
The corrupt agencies involved are good examples of the problems we have in this country. Good ole boys everywhere. So many of these people seem to love killing, I guess they derive some power from it. Pathetic. ANY idiot can kill animals with a gun, as the wolf killers prove.
There is no reason to hate the wolves, they belong, and certainly have more honor than the hunters and trappers.

By Tracey on Fri, January 10, 2014 at 5:48 pm

Hey !!! YOU!!! Knuckleheads. If you are so dam worried about the increasing numbers of an animal why in the hell dont you go down south and hunt the wild hogs…... Knock yourself out….....kill all you want.

DUMBASS’

By DAvid Harkness on Wed, October 30, 2013 at 4:17 pm

Sickening photo of a sickening man.  That poor wolf in that lake of blood.  What an ugly picture.  Where is God, and why doesn’t help the wolf?

By Colette Mahoney on Sun, June 16, 2013 at 2:55 pm

I am truly disgusted by this photo, and by many of the unintelligent comments about this article. Hunting, whether for sport or just to get rid of the animal, seems highly disrespectful to nature. Hunting for food is very reasonable,  but anything else, is appalling. The fact that that man let that poor wolf practically bleed to death, tells me just what the human race has come to…..

By Ariel R on Tue, May 14, 2013 at 7:32 pm

Like Bob I will ask the question again. What method of population control do you pro wolf anti hunters suggest. Were you to come up with a decent solution I doubt I would stop hunting but it might get your arguments a little further. Sorry to rain on your parade mm but these wolves were not here before us. Do some research before you spout your opinion.

Travis Im curious about the statement you made about properly protecting the live stock. Again what do you suggest; putting 100,500, 1000 head of cattle in a locked barn? Yes ranchers are compensated for there loss but only what is lost. Meaning that most wolf kills are on calves and the compensation for a calf is substantially less than a full grown bull or cow.

By Casey Lane on Mon, November 26, 2012 at 4:45 pm

You may have hunted by a true hunters heart that loves the outdoors and all things wild would not be or could ever have been a burden

By bob on Wed, November 21, 2012 at 6:57 pm

Travis- We agree in some principles others - not so much.
  The abundant wildlife populations that exist today are a testament to the effectiveness and success of modern wildlife management techniques be they from superman or scooby do- they work.  I don’t believe your negative opinion can be validated, it is yours to have but has no basis in fact.
  Bransford showed poor judgement and shamed every ethical trapper with his tasteless photos and disrespectful treatment of his catch- the wolf desereved better.
  The set should have been out of sight of the road, checked at first light and the wolf should have been killed quickly and humanely immediately upon approach. The trap had not done him any lasting harm. (Most of the relocated wolves were caughtin leghold traps).
Traps like wolves sometimes get a bum rap, neither is perfect, both are effective and are demonized for no good reason.
  The kill contests are unseemly but some of the numbers they turn up , particulary coyotes, indicate numbers far beyond expections and or far below and may be evidence that more or less hunting pressure is needed to adjust population level.
  Not every predator is capable of decimating the elk and deer herds but the big four of the Rockies are. Wolves, Black Bears, Grizzily Bears, and Mountain Lions are fully capable influencing herd numbers.  They hunt 365 days a year kill any animal,half born, newborn, young or old sick or healthy found to be or that can be made vulnerable.
  The only problem with wolves hunting techniques is that they are too effective. Wolves in Idaho increase in population 17% after natural deaths and depredation kills. Therefore their population without hunting and trapping would double every five to six years. A pack 6 to 12 mature wolves have shown time and time again that no amount of antler or will or shear size will save an elk ,moose , deer, longhorn, shorthorn, hereford or angus from the relentless hunting techiniques of the wolf. It is what wolves do and how wolves hunt - thats ok but too many eat too much. 
  Without good fawn crops the herds will be decimated first by predatio, then by age and the by both..
  What alternative do you suggest to achieve and MAINTAIN a population balance that allows healthy populations all species - long term.
  You may have hunted but if your heart was a burden it was not a hunters heart. To me a hunters heart loves the anticipation, skill training, the learning of wildlife habits, the beauty,intelligence, wariness, the narural defenses of each animal,the scouting,the preparation and quest for perfection (never actually achieved it seems) in every detail, learning the effects of wind,weather, human pressure or contact, human scent, types of prefered habitat, forage, travel patterns and much much more but mostly the hunters heart loves the outdoors and the awesome wildlife in it.
  A true hunter loves being part of the circle of life and taking his place as a predator in it and if you don’t then you do not have a hunters heart.
  If you do have a hunters heart it will lift you up,fill you with love for all things wild and most assuredly never be a burden. 
The best huntung or trapping stories are about the ones who stymied your best efforts and elude you unscathed to be hunted another day. Their endings are as varied as the game and place. The stories of hunters success all have the same ending. Food, fur or both.

By bob on Wed, November 21, 2012 at 6:52 pm

Good try Bob.  And nicely written rhetoric I might add.  Preservationist?  Yes, maybe that’s exactly what I am and damn proud of it.  The more I read about “management” and how all of you think you’re a bunch of scientists, the more you sound like you’ve all read the same comic book.
What is that nonsense about a “hunter’s heart”? What does that mean, that the rest of us are a sub-species of YOU?  That is ridiculous and you know it.  You’d like us to think that we just “don’t get it”.  Well, the fact is that we DO get it, Bob. We accept the subsistence hunting somewhat (less begrudgingy when it’s a clean, swift kill - not trapped or snared, etc,  please don’t sing the praises of trappers…the worst of the bunch.
We don’t understand your “incentives and emotions”?  Oh, yes, that’s because we lack the hunter’s heart, right?  Well, we DO have EYES Bob, and we are reading your ACTIONS. 
We don’t like a grinning idiot posing for a picture with a suffering wolf still trapped behind him.
We don’t like “kill contests” where wildife is decimated for no good reason (though I’ve observed more self-professed ethical hunters are finally speaking out). 
We don’t like that every predator animal is accused of decimating elk populations (find me ONE online OUTFITTER who agrees with that in his advertisemet: They’re all bragging about their 99% success rates!)
We don’t appreciate your criticisms of the wolves hunting techniques when there are more slob hunters out there who would win hands down over wolves.
We don’t buy - not for a minute - that ranchers should be compensated for one ounce of beef/lamb when they haven’t taken proper measures or investment to appropriately protect their livestock, or when they graze on public lands AND more recently, in national forests. Seriously??
Bob, I have hunted.  I have firearms…many.
Thankfully, I am no longer burdened with a hunter’s heart.

By Travis on Sun, November 18, 2012 at 10:49 pm

Viewing pictures and videos of trapped/dying wolves make me sick. Sick to the point that I can’t believe our country has STILL learned NOTHING about the value of wolves in our circle of life. If wolf justice could be left up to me…I can tell you, that many hunters would find themselves trapped in a variety of traps that they use/or have used to trap a wolf. My favorite is the idiot, big stud wolf hunter that trapped a wolf by a stream and then shot it point blank . What a useless excuse for a human being. Real bigtime hunter.Only a heartless, spineless hunter hunts this way. Yeah…shoot a trapped animal that has no way of escaping and then you can brag about how you trapped and killed a wolf. My hope is that one of the hunters children or pets get trapped in one of the traps set out for the wolves,...because that might be the ONLY way these hunters will understand the pain they cause…

By NancyT on Sun, November 18, 2012 at 9:57 pm

I hunt for the sport and eat the game I kill. Trophies get eaten same as the does and cows.
I find the subtitle of this piece false. Conservations believe in the wise USE of our resources. These folks are preservationists and would watch our resources ,including wolves , self destruct rather than to use prudent,proven, effective management methods.
  For a group that seems to be well educated their lack of comprehension of the fact that without any constraints on wolf population growth, eventual,  and certain overpopulation will result in a catastropic loss of the all wildlife resources in the ecosystem including the wolf.
  The true conservationists,caretakers of our wildlife resources, the fishermen, hunters and trappers are tools managers use to balance the wildlife populations with their habitat thus insuring their long term survival.
We do this bacause we are fishermen, hunters and trappers. We are outdoors men and women who participate in the circle of life.
If you do not have a hunters heart, if you cannot understand the hunters mind, then do not try to read our thoughts and profess to know our incentives and emotions.
  Speak for yourselves but do try to learn something about the animals you strive to protect to extinction.

By bob on Sun, November 18, 2012 at 5:22 pm

Nice work that wolf shouldn’t be breathing our air!!
They dont belong in the lower 48!!!

By Phuck Peta on Thu, October 11, 2012 at 4:22 pm

I say dont get rid of all the wolves but they sure need thined out alot more I agree that the deer and elk numbers are way down.I hunt to get food for my table I would like nothing more then to see more deer and elk in the wild for all u folks out there that want to see what wolves do picture them takin down a cow elk and just eating her onborn out of her womb whil she still alive and never return to eat the rest of the carkus I have seen it what a waist and a senseless killing.I say open season longer thin them out protect our wild game stop the sensless killing stop the wolves.

By Ray on Mon, October 08, 2012 at 9:24 am

Bill, Hunting for sustenance and hunting for sport are somewhat different issues.  The wolves are not to blame for the disappearance of the “deer, elk and antelope”.  Dont you think that cattle are somewhat responsible for grazing on lands that the other species should have access to?  And you should know the ranchers are COMPENSATED for any wolf depredation on their cattle.  Or didn’t they tell you??
While wolves may have some impact on the other wildlife, they have proven to be the perfect scapegoat for some hunters and some ranchers who are not honest enough to state the true reasons they want wolves out of the way: competition!
Oh, by the way, minimum wage jobs are “available” all over the country, not just in your neck of the woods. You’re not alone.

By Travis on Wed, August 29, 2012 at 9:57 pm

People need to stop wanting to kill what was there long before they were. The wolves have just as much right to live in Idaho and other states as any other species, and they must be protected. It’s we who moved into their territory, they’re just living as they always have.

By mm on Mon, August 27, 2012 at 10:17 pm

to all the people that say the wolfs should be procted ask the sheep and cattle rachers around hear, who pays them for all there live stock that the wolfs kill? then ask urself where have all the deer elk and antelop gone where most of you guys dont live here or work here try moving here for a year working a minimum wage job and see how well you can servive with out going hunting for food.

By bill on Sun, August 26, 2012 at 9:58 am

Those who hunt these wolves are sadistic sociopaths and don’t understand nor care about the suffering of others.  Their brains are wired differently than normal people.  I wish that they could be shown how it feels to be hunted and left to die.  It might give them some perspective. If these hunters were “real men” they would go out into the wild WITHOUT guns and try to take down the wolves and bears with their bare hands.  I would love to see this encounter!  It would never happen though because these men are complete and utter cowards without their guns.

By Georgia on Wed, August 22, 2012 at 11:17 pm

Alexia, you seem to be asking for empathy for the wildlife from the hunters.  Don’t you see?  Most are lacking the ability to put themselves in the animals’ place, therefore they have no appreciation for the suffering they inflict. I imagine that is one reason why they are often smiling in their “trophy” photos.

As for Awesome Huntress…are you having a meltdown???  Whew!  Nice language.

Casey Lane, thanks for your re-explanation of your viewpoint but like you, it doesn’t pursuade me to embrace that perspective.  I have spent much time in the wilderness, occasionally armed in fact, but have never had to resort to using my weapon and it was never with the deliberate intention of killing something for the sake of killing.  There can be no arguement for that.  And since we both like to quote, someone the other day wrote that TROPHY hunting “reflects a strong emotional disturbance”.
Something to ponder…...

By Travis on Tue, August 21, 2012 at 9:02 pm

A wolf pack that kills for their food is very different from the hunter that leaves it to die a painful and slow death. Wolves kill because they have to - they have no greater understanding of the suffering of others. Humans are suppose to have this understanding but from some of the commentary on here I really doubt it. Hunters with guns and traps are cowards who hunt for the sport. You encroached on their land first and expect us to feel pity when they eat whatever wild life is left over from the HUMAN hunting season?

If all you care about is revenue for your state then you may want to reconsider your morals. I hope that we can save the wolves from the monstrosity that is the sub-human with guns and traps. I am certain no human would want to die a slow and painful death, in the cold, as someone takes a photo of them for their facebook status update.

By Alexia on Tue, August 21, 2012 at 1:52 pm

Fuck you environmentalists….KILL ALL WOLVES!!!!!


—-Wolf slayer for life!

By Awesome Hunteress on Mon, July 02, 2012 at 6:22 pm

Travis I am not at all suggesting that those who dont carry weapons in the wilderness are wrong or dont have valid points. And I appoligize if it came across this way. I simply mean that those who have all these very strong opinions and harsh words for hunters like myself, but who have never really experienced or spent time in the wild environment that they defend, there words carry little weight.  I will use a few quotes from previous posts. This one from dog man trainer “Weren’t the minimum numbers of wolves all established and demanded by wolf advocates?  Weren’t the upper limit numbers established by wolf advocates too? These numbers are a direct result of the efforts of environmentalists who live a long way away from where wolves live and yet have strong emotional feelings about wolves.” Another quote that comes to mind is from Mckenzie and she states “This is retarded.I hated those pictures of the leg-trapped wolf.Poor innocent little creatures get hurt when the real monster should.” (hunters.) Now I do not know this person at all and all I can really speculate on is her words. This statement to me seems to be ignorant and uneducated” and it is to this and similar statemnts that I say your arguments hold no weight!

By Casey Lane on Mon, July 02, 2012 at 4:51 pm

I am a hunter and fisherman. I live in the mountains of Idaho. I deal with the wolves all the time. Any person that says wolves are fast forgiving killers has never seen a wild kill. I have watched calf elk being pulled from the cow while she was giving birth. Then I watched as the cow was eaten. Her stomach torn open and het entrails pulled from her w.hile she tried to stand. It didn’t take seconds. It took over 20 minutes and she was in pain. Now…I am not upset about a wolf being
a wolf. They’re just doing what they do. I am upset about the initial release without a true control plan. I made a living out of taking hunters on trips. That stopped when the wolves showed up. I have seen the so called wolf killing fields. Killing for sport, not food. They need to be kept in check or you so called nature watchers won’t have much to see. Have you been through Yellowstone lately? How many elk did you see?

By Todd on Thu, June 28, 2012 at 10:00 pm

DSL, you are so right.  They hate predators (wolves for this purpose)so venemously that they can’t even think straight. They have convinced themselves this is the way to practice their stewardhip role.  B.S.

Moving on to Casey Lane:
>>>I challenge you to go spend some time in the environment that we hunters love and live for. Then maybe your points and views will have some validity. <<<

Casey!  Are you saying anyone who doesn’t carry a weapon while enjoying the wilderness just doesn’t get it?  Sounds like maybe thats what you mean.  Amazing. This is part of the conflict between our respective “factions”.

This kind of rationale is rather…um…frightening.  Someone recently said “these animals are taking a bullet for us”.  I think I’m now beginning to understand what they meant.

By Travis on Thu, June 28, 2012 at 9:31 pm

i think this is just what we the people are going to have to do to keep the wolf numbers at bay. KILLEM ALL! deer and elk bring way more revanue to our state than some disease infestet muts and for all you so called animal lovers why dont you visit (save our elk.come) and see your majestic little wolfs eat hundreds of baby elk rite out of the cow elks ass while the female is still alive and then they leave the female alive ass ate out and baby eaten laying there mewing out in pain bleading to death and eventualy die so who is sick here.    SO FUCK YOU AND YOUR WOLFS

By wolf hater on Thu, June 28, 2012 at 7:09 pm

DLS While I think your drilling arguments are somewhat unrelated I think you make some valid points on the drilling situations, however I think you fail to see the big picture. At this point and time in our society Oil and other natural resources are essential to our economy. I hope the time is near when this is not the case but as of right now they are needed. I am 150% all for wilderness conservation, however, in light of our need for these natural resources you must ask your self; Which is the lesser evil of our two choices? Do we drill in our own land or do we keep drilling and causing problems in the middle east. I for one think its better to drill in our own land and stop depending on places like Saudi Arabia. Unfortunately this necessary evil comes with sacrifices, mainly lost natural environments and their inhabitants.

By Trent Lane on Thu, June 28, 2012 at 3:34 pm

Sorry Dana not buying it. The key word that you used was domestic in other words they are contained and they are owned. They are someones property and many peoples jobs and way of life. Ranching and farming is a big enough gamble with out these predators. I do not agree with these pics and I am not saying go out and kill all the wolves right now. But again every thing on this earth needs a predator. I know that some of you anthunters are very big nature enthusiasts and you spend a lot of time in the environment that you defend. I respect you but for those of you who do not spend anytime out in the wilderness and your thoughts and views stem from what your friends and parents think, you really have no room to talk and I challenge you to go spend some time in the environment that we hunters love and live for. Then maybe your points and views will have some validity.

By Casey Lane on Thu, June 28, 2012 at 2:19 pm

Mr Reeder is indeed entitled to his opinion as we all are. 

What is dismaying is the degree of pure hatred that is being constantly poured out by the wolf slaughter participants.  If they have such an insatiable desire to kill, why don’t they join Blackwater?  Supposedly the pay is quite good.  Oh!  I forgot: if they became soldiers of fortune somebody might shoot back!

As for sending wolves to Canada, have you not read that the Canadians are poisoning wolves and other wildlife to clear their lands for oil sands mining?  Face it, that’s also the real MO of a lot of you range land holders here in the good old USA.  (See the terms of The Sportsmen’s Heritage Act of 2012.)  Drill baby drill.

By DLS on Thu, June 28, 2012 at 1:23 pm

I’m going to start by saying some of the pics were wrong, should have never been taken.  I have been a hunter since I was old enough to legally, the game populations before wolves came to Idaho had a way of getting managed, either by hunters or hard winters.  The effects of political assholes are now being seen, find me an outfitter from Idaho who agrees that the wolf population hasnt hurt every game population in the state overall.  The wolf population is well above the number that needs to be met before the hunters step in to control the population of them.
    Another myth I would like to clear up, WOLVES KILL ELK AND DEER!!!  If you think wolves eat rabbitts and squirrells your sadly mistaken. Wolves are animals of opportunity, if its a 6 point bull elk by itself, its finished. 
  Before wolves were re-introduced in the mountain states the people who live in the states they were put in should have had some say in the decision. The cure to this problem is to bring wolves into every state, so all of you can enjoy what we have since the wolves were brought back. I wouldn’t be opposed to wolves in Washington.  The Elk were brought back east from Wyoming, I think they need some wolves also.  Unless you are up in the mountains enjoying the wildlife and are around to see the effects on what has happened since they were brought back, you need to shut your pie-holes.
  By the way, the wolves that are in idaho are canadian wolves, not the same wolves that were native to the western states. The wolves need hunted, trapping may offend some people but it is a way to help control the predator population.  Before you place judgement on hunting or trapping you need to understand the need for it, and the way responsabile people do it. This is the opinion of a hunter who is around to see the truth, if you dont agree with me, I’m still entitled to my opinion…...

By Brandon Reeder on Thu, June 28, 2012 at 11:52 am

Enough idiocy about native species.  Domestic cattle are the major invasive species in the Rocky Mountain states.  Furthermore, kill and run is a tactic of coyotes. 
As for you, nature boy, are you a full blooded American Indian?  Can you trace your DNA back over the Aleutian land bridge to the Steppes during the stone age?  No?  I didn’t think so.  So back to Ireland or Israel with ye’.

By Dana Lamont on Thu, June 28, 2012 at 11:41 am

To be honest, Idaho didn’t get rid of enough wolves last year.  They need to get more of them to help protect the true natural species of the state.

Canadian Gray Wolves like the ones that were introduced to Idaho were never native to this area.  They wreak havoc on the elk populations and they do kill more than there share.  Numerous times I have come across fresh wolf kills and they were not eaten.  Thrill Kills.

Killing a wolf will never be considered “murder.”  PETA and Uber conservatives need to stop riding their mystical unicorns across the mysts of the raindbow highway…

Get rid of them all or take them back to Canada.  They don’t belong here.

I will be doing my part.

By Chad on Thu, June 28, 2012 at 11:02 am

So reading over some of these comments has made me realize that the majority of the pro wolf and anti hunters have no clue and no experience with the so called majestic animal. All I hear is hunting is for sport. This is true in a sense, it is physical, fun and competitive in nature but man has been killing for his food since the beginning of time. All the hunters I have ever met including my self use there kills for food and more. I have never hunted animals for strictly a trophy! For those of you saying that wolves are efficient and quick predators, sorry to be blunt but you are wrong. It is very violent and gruesome. From the carcasses I have seen I would say only about a third is actually eatin, and some times the prey is left alive for long periods of time. I know this first hand!!!. For those of you saying that trapping should be outlawed or banned, trapping is a necessary protective measure for farmers and ranchers. If a rancher loses a calf to a wolf that is anywhere from 1200-1700 dollars gone! If that calf were to grow to a full size cow or bull they are potentially losing anywhere from 3000-4000 dollars! I also am not advocating animal torture or suffering, I think all kills should be as clean and humane as possible, But everything on this planet needs a predator. It is the law of nature and it will not change.

By Casey Lane on Thu, June 28, 2012 at 12:35 am

bob, I think Roger Hewitt previously addressed your particular rhetorical rationale quite well.
I have no idea what PETA’s stance is and certainly don’t need an organization telling me what many of us know intuitively and you don’t seem to grasp or wish to acknowledge. 
Just curious: What method and weapon, exactly, are you proposing the wild canids use to hunt their prey…the animals they SUBSIST on?  When it comes to Man vs Predator, at least predatory animals EAT their prey, either at the time of kill, or stored for later use.  No, bob, can’t buy into your “logic” at all.  Good try though.

By Travis on Wed, June 27, 2012 at 6:08 am

You have no facts only insults and rethoric from PETAs fictional rantngs. Bowhuers that I know - Dozens - far more than the one quoted on Petas site, are very efficient hunters and kill cleanly around 95-98% of the time.
  I guess the long exausting race that ensues before a wolf pac starts rippin the guts out of its terrified livng prey doesn’t count. There is nothing clean or humane about canine kills of large quadrapeds.
Without us “clowns”, you would not have all this wildlife to fuss and fume over.
We, hunters/trappers/fishermen, are wildlifes strongest advocates and most successful caretakers.

By bob on Mon, June 25, 2012 at 8:31 am

Humans are brutal. Sport killing portrayed as mercy killing! Predators kill for food, usually efficiently and benefit the ecology of wildlife, of wilderness, even their prey, something sportsmen simply do not do. 

Hunters often portray their sport killing as merciful killing, staving off starvation, more brutal killing by predators, game management, all self-serving rationalizations for going out with traps and scoped rifles and bow and arrow for their carnage which serves not purpose but a primitive need to dress up like clowns in orange and camouflage and kill brutally for sport and pretend they are part of an ecology. They are a disease on the ecology, always have been, and have us on the verge of the Anthropogenic extinction of the animal kingdom left.

By Roger Davis Hewitt on Thu, June 21, 2012 at 7:20 pm

Hunters often portray their sport killing as merciful killing, staving off starvation, more brutal killing by predators, game management, all self-serving rationalizations for going out with traps and scoped rifles and bow and arrow for their carnage which serves not purpose but a primitive need to dress up like clowns in orange and camouflage and kill brutally for sport and pretend they are part of an ecology. They are a disease on the ecology, always have been, and have us on the verge of the Anthropogenic extinction of the animal kingdom left.

By Roger Hewitt on Thu, June 21, 2012 at 7:13 pm

Hunters/anti-wolfers promote this absurd idea that wolves are brutal killers and they are not. Wolves usually kill efficiently and in seconds. The hunters are saving prey from a brutal killing by wolves for what? Their sport killing and trapping and bow hunting. Bow hunters do not kill about 50% of the time, leaving their “mercy killing” targets to wonder for hours, days, months with an arrow in them.

Humans left the ecosystems thousands of years ago as an integral part of any balance and probably always have been an ecological disease having driven a third of all flora and fauna to the verge of extinction. Their rationalizations for anti-wolf, anti-predator are self-serving nonsense.

Hunters, these “sportsmen” with their high powered scoped rifles kill a million animals worldwide every year. They are really sub-human creatures having not caught up with a compassionate evolution recognizing all animals as sentient being entitled to share this planet with us and not be hunted for sport.

By Roger Hewitt on Thu, June 21, 2012 at 6:55 pm

Has anyone witnessed a pack of wolves eating a deer or elk? They often begin eating the intestines and other organs when the animal is still alive and breathing. I am not condoning unnecessary suffering of animals, the wolves need to have a predator to keeps things in balance. Humans are a part of the ecosystem and nature is brutal!

By Jeremy Evans on Thu, June 21, 2012 at 5:54 pm

Thank you, Roger Hewitt.  Excellent points to ponder.

Next, this arrived in my email box today:  A recently published national study by the USDA Forest Services: OUTDOOR RECREATION
TRENDS AND FUTURES

http://scienceblog.com/55102/hunting-out-nature-photography-in/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed:+scienceblogrssfeed+(ScienceBlog.com)

By Travis on Wed, June 20, 2012 at 9:45 pm

Trapping by Wildlife Services USDA kills 100,000 animals a year plus many more as collateral damage. We need neither hunting nor trapping to control animal populations. With a total ecosystem of bears, lions, wolves in numbers they should be in, ecosystems will balance themselves with plenty of sport killing left over for the hunters.

Trapping is inherently cruel and should be banned for the public and very much controlled for the wildlife agencies that are too kill, kill minded. I think there is something inherently inhuman about a trapper. Even archery hunting wounds rather than kills, right away, about 50% of the time, leaving an animal to walk around in pain for hours to months.

Sport killers and trappers and FWP rationalize the irrational and inhumane with regulation of animal populations by their “sports” and need for man-management of ecosystems for ranchers and farmers. 

“Each year, Wildlife Services—a program under the U.S. Department of Agriculture—kills more than 100,000 animals in the name of livestock protection. Idaho officials recently called on the program to kill 14 wolves in the Clearwater National Forest in order to artificially boost game populations for hunters.

Now, reporter Tom Knudson of the Sacramento Bee focuses his Pulitzer Prize-winning journalistic eye on Wildlife Services—and finds a brutal form of managing wildlife that is oftentimes ineffective. “ Defenders of Wildlife

“The problem with Wildlife Services is simple: The federal program relies too heavily on killing to resolve conflicts with wildlife. All too often, these methods are brutal, expensive and ineffective, with 100,000 animals killed each year. Tens of thousands of animals have been killed by mistake over the past decade—including family pets and federally protected wildlife. “

The solution for Wildlife Services is simple as well: Stop the kill-first mentality when it comes to wildlife—and focus on using proven non-lethal deterrents to effectively resolve conflicts. “ Defenders of Wildlife

By Roger Hewitt on Wed, June 20, 2012 at 3:16 pm

You cannot confuse the wolf haters with the facts. Some recent research has found that the republican/conservative mind is impervious to facts, science, or information that does not fit with their beliefs and it applies to the well educated and rich as well as the poor and middle class conservative mind. The more you argue the more they become entrenched in their positions. You can tell them, as FWP has found, that there are both more and less elk in areas wherein there are wolves. There are some places in the Bitterroots where there are more elk than in previous years. Elk herds are generally doing very well statewide and in some areas are almost too numerous.

Wolves and prey have an ancient relationship and adaptation to each other’s numbers. They can work it out. Wolf numbers will also go up and down in an area as they have in Yellowstone without “management”. They should not be micromanaged by local vocal yokels, “sportsmen”, and their comrades in arms, FWP and US F&W and USDA Wildlife Services, who are too influenced by hunter anecdotal opinion and are probably republican/conservative minds themselves for the most part.

There may be too many hunters in the woods. In 2001 there were 162,855 hunters in western Montana putting in 1,191,805 hunter days, 254,000 hunters statewide (per FWP).  Yet, even despite a few years of bad weather and too many hunters and the big bad wolf and the lion and the bear, elk numbers are greatly increased, from 89,000 in Montana in 1992 to 140-000 plus now. Wolves will stabilize in wilderness niches as will their prey.  Let nature be, stop managing nature. Especially stop the cruelties of hunting and trapping.

By Roger Hewitt on Wed, June 20, 2012 at 3:12 pm

Reading comprehension is not your strong suit is it . No, they aren’t starving because their numbers are going to be managed so they dont deplete their prey base. Unmanaged that is the eventual certain outcome.

By bob on Wed, June 20, 2012 at 5:55 am

Just love reading these idiots’ comments that packs of wolves are starving. They have been here since the beginning. God put the wolf here since the beginning of man. These low lives want to kill the wolf for ‘fun’, sport,blood money and politics. They say the wolf is killing their livestock. The wolf is at the bottom of the predator list your banjo banging bozos. Did any of you at least get a GED? There are wild dogs, coyotes, bears, large cats, not to mention diseases that run through the livestock, holes that livestock trip in and break a leg and have to be shot. If you think that the wolves are starving, then stop shooting the deer, moose, elk, etc. You have livestock..remember. Love the term, “sport” hunting. The word ‘sport’ is when the parties involved are both WILLING participants. (PS: What is that on your dinner plate?)

By Anne DiNucci on Tue, June 19, 2012 at 1:31 pm

yeah, Over population,followed by starving and disease are the kinder, gentler ways to control game animal and predator populations.
  Anyone who advocates this in preference to hunting or trapping is not dealing from a full deck of knowledge.

By bob on Tue, June 19, 2012 at 9:55 am

the one who actually lives in these mountains

First of all, Bransford deserves nothing but a stiff fine.  Even other hunters find his pictures disgraceful and obviously he’s proud of them.  So much for him, the loser.
It sounds like what you are advocating is destruction of predators.  Could that possibly be so that there is less competition for hunters such as yourself?  There is definitely a subset of hunters who detest all predators.  They’d choose to alter biodiversity based upon their selfish personal likes and dislikes.  Keep at it and you’ll end up with a totally artificial environment.  Wildness will be a thing of the past.  You’ll have “sitting ducks” to shoot.
But I do agree that introduction of non-native species shouldn’t be messed with.  I also don’t believe in reintroduction.  Once they’re gone - do without.

By Travis on Wed, June 13, 2012 at 9:08 pm

Bob,

I understand your point, however what *you* are advocating and supporting are “hunting seasons” which are basically indiscriminate…the healthy, young, breeders, alphas, etc are all taken at the hunter’s whim.  Unless you (generally speaking) see a starving, emaciated animal, then what is the point?  This micromanagement of wildlife really sucks and wildlife services gets the medal for their “overkill” tactics at enormous taxpayer’s expense.  Glad they are finally being scrutinized.
I think you are rationalizing, and so, you define yourself as well.
 
I believe that trapping is THE cruelest option

By Travis on Wed, June 13, 2012 at 8:56 pm

All of you people who think these wolves deserve better treatment. You are basing these opinions on blurred fact, and no actual knowledge of how this ecosystem works. Or should work I should say. If you are going to make such a big deal about how these cuddly wolves are managed. Then educate yourselves on how nature intended the food chain to work. If you were to do so. You woukd learn there was a mistake made. They introduced a species of wolf that was never here. Im assuming you all show your kids bambi. Keep in mind bambi has to live with these bigger more aggresive wolf. These wolves kill deer and elk just to kill. Not to eat. Ive been watching this happen first hand. You people get your information from people who have never seen. Where a pack of these wolves has killed a cow elk, and left it. I have. Idah fish and game has. Whay about these animals? do they not deserve to have healthy populations? When and i you were to come see our wildlife. Wouldnt you like to see the deer, elk, and moose as well? Cause I promise you. If you get your   way. There will be nothing left to see. Educate yourselves. You do not understand how a eco system should work. Until you do th research, or come to Idaho and see it first hands. You are all making fools of yourselves. If you were to do this. You would be thanking Mr. Bransford. Not sitting behind your desk a thousand miles away. Clueless that you have no idea of what you speak. These wolves will be erraticated. Because the people that know. The people who live with these animals. Know what is at stake. You fine people know nothing about protecting wildlife.

By the one who actually lives in these mountains on Sun, June 10, 2012 at 10:10 am

@ Respect- Yep and the surest way to see the animals suffer the most and to die painful and horrible deaths is to fail to use responsible manangement tools like hunting and trapping to control animal populations to sustainable levels taking into account all of the inhabitants of the ecosystem- including humans and domestic animals.
Death by disease and starvation is natures way of balancing and resetting the predator/prey relatioship.
  This is what you advocate .-It is the most wasteful and destructive option.
It is also the absolute cruelest and most irresponsible.
It seems you define yourself.

By bob on Sat, June 09, 2012 at 7:28 pm

I am so tired of my wild friends being killed, They have a right to live just like we do. If they are attacking cattle than that is another story because rancher need to save there cattle to live. But isn’t there a way to give our wolves a safe place to live where know one is harmed or killed and everyone is happy. This is what I wish could be done.

By Nancy Perkins on Fri, June 08, 2012 at 6:41 pm

Anyone who enjoys seeing an innocent animal suffer and then die a painful death is pretty messed up.  These kind of people are called sociopaths and they lack a conscience.  Even though not all sociopaths become killers, almost 100% of all serial rapists and murderers are sociopaths.  I’d be a little concerned if I were one.

By respect on Thu, June 07, 2012 at 10:04 pm

Dogtrainer,
  It seems that logic or science plays no part in the anti hunting/trapping thought process and leads me to believe that without Disney some of them would not know one animal from another without the “Telli”.
  Kudos for your posts here and else where.
You speak the truth but the many refuse to listen.
They suffer from self induced and perpetuated ignorance.
They can’t or will not comprehend that hunters/trappers are wildlifes (not just wolves) strongest advocates.
This fact remains above the howling to the contrary.

By bob on Thu, June 07, 2012 at 5:35 am

for my opinion you should do a online pettition to help stop this madness and help the endangered wolf. hunting wolfs is like the stupid thing i ever heard of. if i was the president i would vote to help the endangered and ban the hunters around the world!! people should only hunt when they have no food or need fur to keep warm for the winter. not hunt for trophys and to sell their fur thats just wrong!

By heather on Wed, June 06, 2012 at 7:22 am

ya this is messed up but if u think that its ok for wolves to track down and eat my elk then your just as messed up. imagine wolves tearing chunks out of your body when youre alive. IT HAPPENEDS EVERY DAY. ya this guy is discusting but not all hunters are bad. would you rather starve to death or be shot. if there’s to many animals they will run out of food and die anyways. don’t blame me and all the other ethical hunters out there for this one guys actions.

By bryce on Tue, June 05, 2012 at 1:15 pm

Im a hunter and this is disgusting. Hunting an animal should always be done in the most ethical way and this is just animal torture

By Tim on Sun, May 20, 2012 at 4:49 pm

Words are inadequate to describe Bransford and his kind.

The sheriffs of Idaho posing with a shovel and sign saying “308 SSS wolf pack” with their mantra “shoot shovel and shut up” blame the government for introducing wolves for political reasons. It doesn’t take much excuse for these twisted fiends to enjoy slaughtering wolves and anything that moves, purely for fun, just like the airhead Sarah Palin who shoots wolves and bears down from her light plane.

I hope they all come to a sticky end.

By Sharon Hopkins on Tue, May 15, 2012 at 9:19 am

Now Minnesota has passed legislation to hunt the wolves in MN. It won;t be long before another so called hunter will be pictured like the one from Idaho. Howling for Wolves tried to stop it, but Gov Dayton signed it, in a bigger bill, silently hidden away. When it happened the only publication was a small article in the middle of the /St Paul paper mentioning the the wolf hunt. They know it is wrong, that’s why they try to hide it. God sees all. I pray for the wolves who will die because of this stupid action.

By verna hoppe on Tue, May 15, 2012 at 9:10 am

Coward!!! Wimp!!! Sadistic Asshole!!!

By Tisbert on Tue, May 15, 2012 at 2:40 am

This is real MANPOWER: It means stupidity, brutality and arrogance!

By Antje Göttert on Mon, May 14, 2012 at 11:28 pm

I agree with everyone that says this redneck inbred, ugly, SOB deserves to have his foot chopped off, he deserves 10 times worst than that, and he would not want to spend 5 minutes with me, he wouldn’t even want to cross paths with me. This has my blood boiling, and I am in tears, this wolf was so beautiful, I can’t get over how large he was! He’s so majestic looking, and deserves respect, ALL animals deserve respect and their space, and people should leave them alone! These kind of people like this ugly monster deserve to have 10 times worst done to them than they do to these beautiful creatures, I have no heart and no remorse for people that hurt and kill animals whatsoever.

By Lavender on Mon, May 14, 2012 at 8:00 pm

IT DO’S NOT TAKE A FOOL TO SEE THAT THIS SO CALLED HUNTER,HAS NO RESPECT FOR ANYTHING.THESE GIN TRAP’S.WERE OUT-LAWED HERE A LONG TIME AGO,AS A PERSON WHO HUNT+FISH’S ONLY TO EAT.I WOULD NEVER LEAVE A WILD ANIMAL IN SUCH DISTRESS.WHILE FEEDING YOUR EGO.I RESPECT LARGE PREDATOR’S.IT’S VERY SAD WE NO LONGER HAVE SUCH GREAT BEAST’S HERE BECAUSE OF AS***LE’S.LIKE THIS SO CALLED FOREST WORKER.IS THERE SOMETHING WRONG WITH THE STATE OF IDAHO?WAKE UP….

By DAVID O'NEILL on Mon, May 14, 2012 at 5:26 pm

YA KNOW AFTER READING THIS CRAP ,IT JUST DOESN’T SURPRIZE ME THAT IDAHO IS LOST AND I WOULDN’T BE SORPRIZED IF THE USDA FINDS NOTHING . OUR GOVERNMENT HAS LIED SO MANY TIMES THAT WE EXPECT IT . WHY IS IT THAT SOME STATES ARE PUSHING THE WOLFS TO BREED AND REPLACE THE ONES THAT HAVE ALMOST BECOME EXTINCT AND TTHEN IDAHO ALLOWS THIS . GOVERNMENT AT ITS BEST…PLEASE STOP THE HUNTING OR TRAPING OF ANY ANIMALS THAT ARE ANYWHERE EVAN NEAR BEING ENDANGERED.LETS NOT SCREW EVERYTHING IN THIS WORLD UP.

By KENNY on Mon, May 14, 2012 at 5:22 pm

Hunting is bonding tradition. I hunted for a long time, finally out grew it. I hunted with my son, my ex father-in-law, a veterinarian, and friends, most highly educated and professionals, but never really liked killing animals as a wholesome activity for me or family. I have also fished a lot in rivers and oceans, including SCUBA and spear fishing. Too often, animals do suffer from hunting and fishing activity. I have bonded with others in tennis and running and triathlons and dancing, and horses, and hiking and else. The picture of a grinning, searching for the word, redneck, once myself I guess, with a killed animal, now really is that healthy or wholesome? The picture of a son or daughter in front of first kill is such a prideful thing? A camera works as well. The tradition of hunting: It does get us out in the woods or prairie or mountains or oceans or rivers in a primal state of hunter or fisherman versus prey: Man with high powered scoped rifles, running around on 4-wheelers and pickup trucks. The Prey does not see what is coming. Go out there with a knife and see who the prey is. But getting out there in the wilderness, without hunting, does the same. Now the trapper, collecting furs, leaving a trapped animal (snared or steel trapped) in such a state for hours or days, in the case of a wolf, something superior to them (my opinion), what is such a mentality? I have the answer, but you get your own. By the way, if it is relevant, I am a two time Viet Nam vet. Hunting, ethical (often not), fair chase (usually not), tolerable (don’t believe it), but trapping? No, no way. Trapping is cruel even if done legally, even if it is a tradition, even if seen as a management tool. Traps are cruel. It should be banned for the public, allowed as necessary for wildlife officials who use it vastly too much with a pervasive kill attitude of their own. Why should animals suffer for private economic gain on fur sales or to artificially farm (boost) elk herds?  Over 4 million animals are trapped each year for “sport” and millions more for “management” and millions more as collateral damage. Hunters worldwide kill over 100 million animals. Bow hunting is also cruel and barbaric with close to 50% of animals wounded not killed and left to wonder for hours, days, months, in a wounded state. The oceans are over fished commercially and further insult added by “sportsmen”. The current evident attitudes of sportsmen, maybe always true, have turned me against hunting in general and trapping in particular.

By Roger Hewitt on Mon, May 14, 2012 at 4:27 pm

All I can say is “Liar, Liar”

By Coraleen Kershaw on Sun, May 06, 2012 at 9:39 am

Disgusting!! How is it that one species (humans) decide which animals can live or die? Their only doing what is natural to them, and we are the ones encroaching on their habitat forcing them to come into contact with us.. yet they get the bad rap and killed for no reason.. its truly embarrassing to be human sometimes!

By AMKinne on Thu, May 03, 2012 at 7:46 pm

I couldn’t imagine that kind of coward and cruel actings could exist into US territories !!
  Hard to see it does

By f.Lacheroy on Sun, April 22, 2012 at 12:49 am

This horrible incident NEEDS to be publicized so that the general public becomes aware of how cruel and sadistic these archaic laws (and trappers and hunters) really are.  Even though it’s reported that these photos (of this poor wolf and his tormenter) went viral on the internet, 99% of people whom I’ve spoken to aren’t aware of this case and the vast majority of people aren’t aware of the laws pertaining to “management” of the wolf populations.  Please publicize this and other cases of cruelty against wolves (and other wild animals)!!  I believe that the average American has a conscience and would be outraged by what these laws and the sadistic trappers and hunters are doing to the wolf population in both the U.S. and Canada.  Call or write to news organizations such as CNN or MSNBC etc. and tell them about this case and the laws pertaining to these beautiful animals!!  We need to save the wolves NOW!!!

By charlotte smith on Wed, April 18, 2012 at 11:12 pm

The incident last week involving the trapped wolf who was tortured and photographed before being killed highlights the real need for reform in our handling of animals in the wild. Traps such as this, need to be completely banned and our animal cruelty laws need to encompass this type of issue to be viable in this day and age.  The Fish and Game Department has a careless attitude on this problem. They have a daylong workshop for people who wish to kill and trap wolves but this is woefully inadequate in policing the habits of those who trap in this way. Bottom line is that there is no ethical stance you can take on the acceptable use of steel jawed traps.  The traps are inhumane, outdated, and subject to use by those who can and will abuse wildlife.  It is extremely duplicitous to say that traps are ok to use, as long as photographs are not taken during the trapping process.  Idaho needs to lead the way in this reform by banning such traps.  Our handling of this issue will determine how animals are treated and what rights we are willing to deem appropriate for the wildlife in our state.

By Shannon Jones on Wed, April 18, 2012 at 7:22 am

SHAME ON YOU bransford! WE HATE YOU IN FRANCE! NEVER COME IN PARIS WOLF KILLER! GOD BLESS ALL WOLVES!

By AGNÈS DELANIS on Tue, April 17, 2012 at 9:52 pm

I write from France. BASTARD Bransford! I would like to put your dirty leg in the trap! I would like to see with my big smile your dirty blood on snow! SHAME ON YOU! JUST SHAME ON YOU ! You look on the pictures SO PRIMITIVE! GOD bless all wolves on this stupide and bad world! HOWLSSS!

By AGNÈS DELANIS on Tue, April 17, 2012 at 9:40 pm

Mr.Bransford, do you realize the wolf your holding is dead? And you call that a ‘‘nick’‘? If you want to know how much pain the beautiful creature is in, get your own foot stuck in a trap and shoot yourself a few times. Mother Nature is angry and will get justice. Do you know the pledge of allegiance to the american flag? And liberty and justice for all. Including Wolves. Stop murdering wolves!!!

By Guardian of Nature on Tue, April 17, 2012 at 6:44 pm

Rise UP my people…
“People from somewhere where wolves aren’t have the most say in what can be done about wolves where wolves are”… so goes the old Indian pre-relocation proverb.
I sit down with a cool drink, fire up the computer and read the latest entry of JWGibson on wolf torture, setting things to rights, and the end of all that is good in the world if the masses don’t rise up and demand justice right now. 
I read dramatic inflammatory words like “blood drenched”; “functionally extinct region-wide”;  “blood stained pool”;  “so much blood”; (I had to look again at the picture to see if I was looking at the same picture);  Wolf chewed leg off”;  “lying”;  “controversy”;  “cover-up”;  “under the rug”;  “unraveling”; “vindication”; “international attention”;  “inflamed pubic”;  “suffering creature”;  “outrage”;  “unspeakable cruelty”;  “Government can’t be trusted” (oh wait, I’m for that one…);  “normalcy and decency”;  and a call to arms so the wolf can be saved (again).  Now are we looking to uncover a cover-up, perpetrated by those lying S.O.B.’s from the Government?  Seems they are motivated to sweep the whole thing under the rug to keep the emotionally volatile readers from learning that wolves are now “functionally extinct – region wide”.  Can’t let that out, ho no. 
Turns out the pivotal trapperman’s story is a dying ember of outrage, and the short term memory of the emotionally volatile is petering out.  What is needed is an “extreme make-over” i.e. the story needs some juicing up, so the environmentalist base can rise up as one to smite the wolf murderers, and torturers ((Read the original story, Wolf Torture and Execution Continues in the Northern Rockies) to see the real whole inflammable truth. )
Then I read on that the “large blood stained pool on the snow” was caused by the “only…explanation” that could be, that the wolf must have tried to chew its own leg off!  I don’t know if you have ever seen an animal that has chewed its own leg off, but it sure doesn’t look at all like that wolf in the picture attempted to “127 hours” his leg off for freedom. 
And if JWG had been thinking of the most effective inflammatory words to use, he should have used “blood soaked pool of bloody snow” instead of “blood stained pool”.  That way there is more emphasis on the bloody pool of blood.   
My favorite line in this JWGibson piece is “the state of Idaho can’t be trusted to manage an iconic predator like the wolf”.  But wait, don’t your brothers and sisters at Footloose Montana openly advocate for a ban on all traps, and don’t environmentalists WANT the private free independent citizen trapper (aka - “Neanderthal knuckle dragging morons”) to be legally prevented from trapping, thus forcing animal control/management responsibility unto that very government that JWG just proclaimed “can’t be trusted”?  I get confused.  You want government trappers only, no private citizens, and you can’t trust the government? 
So is the planned, hope and change to be “nobody gets to kill/manage the wolf?”  Or is there somebody else out there I don’t know about yet who can limit wolf populations indefinitely from where the sun now stands without ever using lethal methods.  A “Fluke” wolf control pill or something.
And what about the lingering issue regarding how many wolves is enough wolves?  Somebody must have assessed that there are enough wolves above and beyond the well established minimum numbers of breeding pairs and sustainable packs to de-list them and put them on the hunting and trapping list, right?  Weren’t those minimum numbers all established and demanded by wolf advocates?  Weren’t the upper limit number established by wolf advocates too?  I want to know, how many is enough?  Is killing wolves to manage the population of wolves ever going to be o.k.?  Are you advocating wolf populations NEVER be managed?
Did you know that when environmentalists reintroduced the wolf into the greater Yellowstone ecosystem that the environmentalists caused the extinction of the wolves that were already there?  What gives you the right to decide what gene pool can go extinct and which ones can be encouraged to go ye therefore and make more wolves?  Did you know the very same thing happened to the Mountain Bison when the environmentalists reintroduced the Plains Bison to the greater Yellowstone ecosystem?  The Mountain Bison went extinct.  What gives you the right to do that?  What gives you the right to ignore that you did that? Why aren’t there signed petitions and proposed legislation, and lynch mobs going after the people that did that?  The wolves that were indigenous to the Park region are now functionally extinct and really extinct region-wide, and not by mean old trapper murderers like myself and trapperman, but as a direct result of the efforts of environmentalists who live a long way away from where wolves live and have strong emotional feelings about wolves.  Might I suggest they didn’t think this all the way through?
Do you know how many wolves will be too many wolves and when it will be o.k. to kill some?  If you agree to maximum numbers, will you be murderers too?  I guess if you don’t mind causing the extinction of certain animals, and are actively threatening to cause the extinction of certain backwards cultures, you’ve got a pretty good handle on rationalization, projection, and compartmentalization.  Just like us mentally sick demented wolf murderers do.  What is wrong with us? (but I don’t mean you).

By dogmantrainer on Tue, April 17, 2012 at 9:59 am

Thanks for posting that comment Ann. I’m a native Oregonian living in Washington and I had not heard about the incident with OR7 being killed illegally. Idaho *wildlife management* is a complete joke; it disgusts me.

By Angela on Mon, April 16, 2012 at 1:49 pm

This is a barbaric act, perhaps the hunter should be “nicked” in this trap.  All life feels pain, sadness, fear.  We cannot evolve as people if we continue to treat other life forms this way.

By Virginia Brown on Mon, April 16, 2012 at 10:02 am

Please STOP the killing of wolfs…

By Donna Arizmendi on Mon, April 16, 2012 at 6:22 am

Forest Circus employee.  Whitebird native.  Low expectations.  Classy.

By Todd on Sun, April 15, 2012 at 9:39 pm

Dear Mr. Bransford, what’s that blood on your hands?
Dear Mr. Bransford, what’s that large circle of red you are standing near?
Dear Mr. Bransford, who is that beautiful dead animal you are holding?
Dear Mr. Bransford, I am sure he has forgiven you.
Dear Mr. Bransford, please leave these families alone. They do no harm. Our Eco system needs them. They are not a threat.
Dear Mr. Bransford, Mother Earth’s heart is bleeding also.
Dear Mr. Bransford, I do hope you are not only listening, but you can hear all the cries.

By Anne DiNucci on Sun, April 15, 2012 at 5:03 am

I look at his face and am filled with rage.  It will not go away until justice is served.  Bransford has a big smile but there is something seriously lacking between his ears. That magnificent wolf will have served a purpose, far beyond the selfish reasons Bransford and his ilk had.  Keep these photos circulating from time to time.  We won’t forget and we’re not “going away”.

By Robert on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 6:13 pm

All I want to say is all wolves have the right to live just find them a patch of land in a wooded area where they can have all they need and make it a Resavation for wolves that they can call home. You much have some place like that in Idaho with all the open space.

By Nancy Perkins on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 6:01 pm

It disgusts me what some people do and then call a sport to try and justify it when there is nothing sportsman like about taking down an animal simply for the “joy” of it.

By Holly on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 4:49 pm

Every time I see this grinning moron I want to put a trap across his stupid face & see how much he would grin then - what a bastard he is.

By Peter Bufton on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 4:46 pm

As a fishing guide and member of the Wolf Conservation Center (which is successfully breeding and placing wolves in areas where there is not such barbarism) I must ask just what is wrong with all of these people you write about.  Are you aware that the American Psychiatric Association lists animal torture as a sociopathic behavior in the same category with serial killing of humans?  What sort of Congressional rider was created by Slazar’s compatriots, in order to sneak through the repeat delisting?  We must inform the members of congress, now, of the consequences of their behavior.  Why are CBD activists only “investigating whether to begin”  a national campaign?  Do they intend to start after the wolf’s gene pool is effectively wiped out?  That will be happening way before you “see what the future Congresses look like.”

This is US taxpayers’ money being wasted to pay wages to cowardly criminals like Bransford and all in the chain of command who protect him.  Do Salizar and Otter really own the state of Idaho as well as all the Federal tax dollars allocated to the Department of Interior? 

We environmentalists all over the country and worldwide, have been trying to tell you there is a serious problem there.  But you are “investigating whether to begin.”  The only results we see so far are more killings, more bragging about the killings, more threats of violence from the perpetrators who claim to be misunderstood by outsiders i.e., the 50,000 or so who have signed petitions thus far.  The New York Times (which has a readership nationwide) has been highly critical of wolf slaughter in its editorial pages.  What more do you need if you are sincere ?

By Dana Lamont on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 3:22 pm

That should your foot in the trap so you could see how it feels!!!!

By C.BANGS yes BANGS on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 1:08 pm

But the point is that th ewolf had to die, or isn’t that important at all. This animal did not deserve to die at all, and the fact that this man is smiling makes me sick!! He is a gross example of a man. His foot needs to be trapped and he needs to bleed and see how he likes it and he needs to be in pain.

By Julie on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 9:34 am

this man shoud have his foot choped off

By d causier on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 6:41 am

This Is Disgusting and you should all be made to suffer as the wolf in this picture!Once again this is a total Disrespect for Nature&what; we as humans are Responsible for Protecting!Shame On You All!!

By Lizz Shields on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 5:55 am

Id like to see Mr.Josh “Pinching” Bransford caught in that trap and shot at.

But seriously, a man with that level of wanton cruelty and clear insecurity so as to need to torture other life forms should never have that type of job.
It’s such an incredible incompetancy shown of people like him in important positions of power.

Its shocking. He should be fired outright.

By Erin Dopp on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 5:06 am

Thank you Bill Gibson and the Earth Island Journal, for bringing the facts surrounding this incident to light! 
When Oregon’s Wolf OR7 was illegally killed a few months ago by an Idaho hunter with an expired tag, that hunter got off with just a warning.  Yet a Bonner county Sheriff didn’t get away with just a warning when he poached a moose without a valid tag a couple of years back. The head of anti wolf group Save Elk didn’t get out of his (ironic) elk poaching charge by pleading ignorance when his elk tag wasn’t valid either. 
IDFG Law Enforcement apparently get their cues about wolf poaching from our wolf hating Governor, who joked about the death of Wolf OR7 ,sarcastically offering the Governor of Oregon 150 Idaho wolves as retribution.
When will wolves finally be shed of their scapegoating status??? 
This one black wolf, this one scene, this one show of injustice, represents many, many others and many, many more to come unless we can wake up the rest of America, and Lawmakers, and stop it.

By Ann Sydow on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 2:25 am

This is retarded.I hated those pictures of the leg-trapped wolf.Poor innocent little creatures get hurt when the real monster should. =(

By Mackenzie on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 12:54 am

I would like to recommend the following be added to the national discourse:
1 Trapping, snaring, and poisoning should be banned for all wild animals. These practices are from the 1800’s. Animals have lost immense habitat and are under stress from development, pollution from mining (especially MT,ID) and gas exploration (WY). That hounding and clubbing are listed in WI
is appalling.

2 FWS and USDA officials are lapdogs for corporations currently. The current chief of the USDA was not in land management previously - he’s never even been a District ranger. The lobbyists claiming the “Sagebrush Rebellion” are anti-wolf, as are many ALEC corporations. These groups need to be outed as they have enormous capital to buy
legislators.

By heath on Sat, April 14, 2012 at 12:20 am

These trappers and hunters are nothing more than wildlife killers. Them posting their pics will show the world what wildlife killers they truly are.

By mick on Fri, April 13, 2012 at 11:00 pm

The Forest Service is not an institution that shelters woods and animals. Far from it the Forest Service destroys woods (including Redwoods) by selling it to the lumber industry, admits activities like oil and gas extraction and sells permits for killing wild animals. What kind of destructive things they have done already in the past and still doing in the presence you can read in the book “A walk in the Woods” by Bill Bryson.

By Antje Göttert on Fri, April 13, 2012 at 10:41 pm

Trapping is the worsest kind of hunting.
In my eyes hunters and trappers are sick.

By hans-werner peters on Fri, April 13, 2012 at 8:18 pm

And maybe Obama will be re-elected and not worrying about re-election can be convinced that supporting environmental causes can become his legacy. So far he has shown only the opposite.

By Gary Ott on Fri, April 13, 2012 at 7:55 pm

Bill- Thank you for your thorough reporting on this disaster called “wildlife management” in the NRM.  It is obvious to everyone except hunters and trappers that Idaho is incapable of managing wolves…The dishonesty and lack of ethics is truly stunning.

By william huard on Fri, April 13, 2012 at 6:44 pm

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