To The Editor:
This letter is written in response to an article by Larry Tobin in the Nov. 15, 2005 issue of the Tomahawk Leader, regarding wolves.
In the article was a reprint from a hunting trip broker from Montana. I have checked some of the statistics given and found them to be highly exaggerated, as is the case with many hunting guides and outfitters in the western states.
He mentioned that there are 166 packs in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming. Actually there are 66 packs. He also mentions that the Yellowstone elk herd dropped from 20,000 to 7,000 and blames the wolves for this reduction. The real reason for this reduction in the elk herd was an extended hunting season around the edge of Yellowstone to reduce the oversized elk herd! He also mentions the slaughter of the buffalo - how ironic!
As far as the deer situation in Wisconsin, the deer count going into this year's deer season was 1.4 to 1.5 million. During last year's deer season, hunters took 519,388 deer, the second highest deer kill in the history of the state. Somebody must have been sitting on the right stump! We have too many deer! Also there are approximately 15 percent of deer shot and not recovered, over 75,000. There are over 50,000 deer killed on Wisconsin highways. This is a total of over 644,000 deer.
There are approximately 450 wolves in the state and they consume about 18 deer per wolf or about 8,000 per year. Hardly a drop in the bucket.
It wasn't the wolf that drove the passenger pigeon from the sky, slaughtered the buffalo almost to near extinction, eliminated the buffalo and elk from Wisconsin. People did that! We must start listening to sound scientific biology and ignore barstool biology. Oh yes, Little Red Riding Hood lied!
ECCOLA Wolf Task Force