A Canine Debate Turns into a War


A Canine Debate Turns into a War

by Amy Lignor


New Mexico was heralded (not too long ago, by the way) when they chose to reintroduce the wolf into the wild. Fans of the wolf, and everyone from U.S. Fish & Wildlife to the WWF chimed in with praise when it came to helping a species that was once being helped in the Rocky Mountains, only to end up being marked for death once again. But now, New Mexico is at the top of the list when it comes to anger and backlash.


Mexican grey wold, Guardian, trapping, ill-managed government, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, New MexicoIn January, The Center for Biological Diversity reported that only 97 wolves were counted in the wild in New Mexico and Arizona, down from the previous year’s total of 110. Perhaps that doesn’t sound like much to some, but keep reading. Michael Robinson of the Center stated that Mexican wolves were “unfairly penalized because ranchers are not required to eliminate the lure of carrion.” And now, what’s worse, is that the feds have gone and green-lighted wolf trapping in New Mexico


It is in Silver City, N.M., where an endangered Mexican gray wolf roaming the Gila National Forest has been ordered to be removed from the wild; punishment for killing cattle. This is one of, if not the last – I’ll repeat, last – alpha male of the Luna pack. Removing this two-year-old alpha male would further reduce the already barely discernable wolf population. It also turns out that this alpha wolf has a mate who may be pregnant, which is yet another reason the wolf should be left alone and allowed to stay in the wild and “help raise his pups.”

In essence, because of a completely ill-managed government, the Mexican wolf is racing to extinction instead of recovery. The government’s answer to this? The same ridiculousness as always. Trapping is to commence after the wolf’s mate heads into a den to give birth, or after May 15, which is the last possible date for whelping (giving birth), in order to avoid bringing any harm to her. But with the data already known, even with humans feeding the female, pups born will be less likely to survive if the father is removed.


Known by the government as M1396, the alpha male’s name is Guardian. He originated in the Fox Mountain pack – a pack that has suffered continuously from government trapping, including Guardian’s own brother and the pack’s alpha female back in 2012. (The female died just recently after years of poor captivity.)


The reason for what looks to be Guardian’s ultimate demise is that he and his mate were drawn to cattle by the remains of cows. These already dead cows did not die because of wolf attacks, however, they died from other causes. Going against the recommendations of scientists, and doing a complete 360 when it comes to upholding the regulation set in place to successfully reintroduce the wolf into the wild, owners of livestock in the Southwest are NOT required to prevent wolf scavenging by removing the carcasses of non-wolf-killed animals.


New Mexico officials did notify the federal government last week that they will bring a lawsuit to block the planned release of more Mexican gray wolves without the state’s approval. The state department last year denied the federal agency’s application to release wolves into the wild. But the Fish and Wildlife Service announced it planned to release a pack of wolves this year.


Between the state department, the feds, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the ranchers who want to trap or “point and shoot” to get the wolves off their land, the Mexican gray wolf is now worse off than ever before. This canine debate now seems to include all people from every organization – some that have lobbyists on Capitol Hill working for their own benefits. Strange thing is…as these departments of power fight and haggle, the wolf is being overlooked completely. In the end, while everyone fights their war, a female wolf will lose her mate and watch her pups most likely die after their father is taken away for no good reason.


If you roll your eyes at that statement, just change the word “wolf” to “child” and you’ll (hopefully) get the point.

Source:  Baret News

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