Search Our Site

Search form


Finally, the wolves won. Then Alaska's Board of Game changed the rules.

February 01, 2006 | Wolves

On the 17th of January, Alaska's Superior Court declared that the aerial wolf control scheme, in which people in aircraft chase wolves to exhaustion and then shoot them, is invalid. The airborne hunting permits, issued to boost moose populations for human hunters, flew in the face of the Board of Game's own regulations. Since 2003, 445 wolves have been gunned down using those permits that were wrongly issued. The state wants to wipe out 400 more wolves under the scheme this season, but the permits were recalled. So Alaska's Board of Game called an emergency meeting -- as though its lack of competence in adhering to its own rules is properly called an emergency.

Sunday, the 29th of January, the Board just flat-out repealed requirements for public notice and input regarding wolf and bear control. It also repealed all requirements and limitations that apply generally to wolf control -- the very bases for the Court's initial January ruling that existing wolf control plans are invalid! For the first time in history, Alaska's officials are allowing the sale of bear hides and skulls. The Board of Game decided to apply this rule in a part of northeastern Alaska, and the interior areas where aerial wolf hunting has been allowed. Bruce Bartley, a Fish and Game spokesperson, said that when Alaska gained statehood, many residents thought federal laws had targeted wolves and bears too ruthlessly, and the new state "wanted to treat them as animals worthy of respect in their own right." As Bartley told the Anchorage Daily News: Things are different now. Animals aren't worthy of respect these days in Alaska. Their fate lies with a capricious Game Board, or game-playing board. When caught in their games, they try, like peeved children, to change the rules. Friends of Animals' goal is to stop the entire scheme. Last Friday -- ten days after the wolves prevailed in Court -- we returned, seeking a Temporary Restraining Order to stop the Game Board's "emergency" circumvention. Yesterday, the judge turned down our Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order against the emergency regulations adopted by the Board last week. So predator control can go forth, under the new regulations we've just challenged. We're now considering our legal options. Please consider making a donation to our efforts on behalf of Alaska's wolves.


of course i realize that FoA does not dislike alaskans as a whole. i am only stating how many perceive the boycott and your movement in general. as far as 'outsiders' i meant no disrespect, perhaps i could have come up with another way to describe those who do not live here and know little about our state. i realize some FoA members do live here and others of you are quite knowledgable about alaska, but many who write into this site really do not have a clue. most of my posting have been meant to try to explain things up here and to clear up misconceptions. since i have began writing to this site i have seen us called heartless, idiots, losers, barbarians, knuckleheads, cowards and so on. i have been told that perhaps we should be the hunted. i have seen threats not only of sanctions but of violence. although i know FoA does not believe these things about all alaskans and does not promote violence, you must see how that looks to us. and while most alaskans do not care whether you boycott or not, those who it will effect take it personally. many here are of the opinion that the boycott will not save wolves but will cost people their livelyhoods. i tend to agree. [ Blog editors' note: Jimmy:Tempers are often hot on any blog that allows arguments. In contrast, we're routinely blocked from hunting-oriented blogs. FoA posts most messages from those who bellyache about animal advocacy views. The most, vulgar, vile messages are not posted. Some idiotic messages appear, but we're not the authors. When hunters boast about shooting wolves, they sound ridiculous, and we post some of those rants. Many here are disgusted with the violence in our culture, and they sound off accordingly. If people in the tourism industry experience the downside of terrible public policy, then it's time to wake up and be a part of the change that's needed. Go to the Board of Game meetings to testify, write letters to your papers, meet with your politicians -- be part of the inevitable change; just do something.]

joanne: i too live here. i too am an 'ethnic alaskan'. Of course, stupid stereotypes rule SOME PEOPLE in Alaska. obviously... one need only read your postings to see that. i am a newcomer to alaska by some standards, i have only been here 24 years, but the alaska i came to was far less civil then it is now. pipeline days and the years to follow were pretty wild.

Jimmy Allen: As noted by the editor, a lot of not-really-relevant, personally insulting, and otherwise rude mail from people with Alaska e-mail addresses gets deleted. In any case, no threats of violence are justified from any perspective on the issues, so just to clarify: Friends of Animals will be uncompromising with our message but we do not condone violence and intimidation. Indeed, that non-violent view is a key part of our message. If people are pressed to behave in a certain way only because (and as long as) they are in fear, what would we have achieved? Lee Hall Friends of Animals

Bob Orabona - I don't know about you, but I'm having fun in this discourse! I like contacting differing points of view than my own. But why do you attack me personally? I'll buy you a beer or other beverage of your choice anytime. One of my close neighbors is a honcho in Alaska Wildlife Alliance. About the only thing we ever agree on at get-togethers is what we'll drink at the moment. So why the mean spirit? May we limit this to debate of issues, rather than personal attacks? I was one (as a young man- college age- without practical experience)- who twice voted to end aerial "hunting" of wolves. Then I lived for a number of years in rural villages, and for a fair while in near "subsistence" conditions, alone in the wilderness (acquiring a wife was the end of THAT). "College boy" gained a whole new meaning! I still oppose generalized aerial "hunting" of wolves, as it was done in the 60's and 70's. I do not oppose arial "culling" under controlled conditions of predators where needed. No doubt growing up as a "farm boy" in North Dakota where we raised animals for sale and slaughter affects my perspective. When there are too many animals present for the available resource base, it is wise to reduce their numbers. And it WILL be done! "Nature" tends to do it to extremes. Human management is sometimes better (not that mistakes aren't made sometimes- we can but try to the best of our ability). The fact is, the majority of Alaska (Federally controlled) is off-limits to any "control" methods. Of the rest (State and accommodating Native-held lands), only a small proportion is deemed necessary for predator reduction, i.e. "intensive management" efforts, where arial reduction of wolf numbers and intensified bear harvest are necessary. If I had to guess, without more extensive research, I'd say only about 6 or 7 % of the entire land mass of the state which wolves inhabit are subject to the arial culling (notice I did not call it "hunting") program. As for the poster wondering if anyone knows any of the Board of Game members, yes I do- two of them, one casually , the other (with whom I frequently disagree) for many years. Their names are a matter of public record, available to anyone with the intelligence to work a keyboard.

Larry, Just as your attack of your own syntax was not a personal attack on yourself, neither was my attack personal, but an attack on your logic (or lack there of). As your own arguments seem serverely limited to the desire to kill and eat sentient beings, I metaphorically summarized your interest in food as an interest in "lunch". Having pointed out the weakness of your "point of view", I merrily, not meanly, continued the metaphor with my opinion that your arguments did not arrive from making a great deal of effort -- when someone is "out to lunch", they are not at work. But, we are not having a "discourse". Had we been, you might have responded directly to my criticism of your logic rather than pointing to, in this case, the "red herring" of a personal attack. Though you ask for me to "limit this to debate of issues", you do not respond when the points you present are challenged. As to personal attacks, what could be more of a personal attack than the killing and eating of sentient beings? Sorry your feelings got hurt, but the animals you kill and eat suffer far greater injury. Bob Orabona Friends of Animals

The problem is the "process". What "process"? The judges say "no"; the repubs ("game board" appointed by repubs)say: "We're gonna do it anyway". The judiciary says "hmm, we need a raise, immediately". The repubs say "OK". And, Alaska gets boycotted. And there are fewer humane people because former "college guys" turn from being "idealistic" and separate themselves into lockstep with the aligned stars in error and there you have it...carnage central in lieu of the grand and beautiful state God prepared. Well, have a nice day...somewhere else. The humane people of alaska are frowning. The pillagers, I believe, are here. Humane folks are welcome to move here and vote and become "experts" and say "I LIVE HERE!" Seriously.

thank God these poor beautiful creatures are saved! I would like to see these hunters run from an aerial shot!

On February 1, 2006, Terry from Alaska wrote, "Not only is FoA against these things, they're against all forms of hunting, even if hunting is the only means of putting meat on the table. Oh, that's right FoA is against all forms of consuming meat and wants the world to adopt a vegetarian lifestyle. FoA will stop at nothing to advance their agenda. Why don't you tell people what your really against and stop playing on the bleeding hearts of nieve people to further your idiotic agenda?" Regardless of what FoA thinks is wrong, the mass-slaughter of wolves is still wrong. They're saved? Everything is alright?

Finnaly a group of people who agree with me! I knew more people than me cared about wolves! Now down to buisness, the reputation of wolves is unfair, terrible, and barbaric. When people didn't know much about wolves they were afraid of them but we know more about them and they still have that bad reputation. More and more books and movies have the wolf as the bad guy so people still fear them. Even though I am still young, I think (and know) that wolves should have freedom from their terrible reputation. I think I speak for us all when I say Wolf Freedom and SAVE WOLVES!!!

That's great. Save the wolves. One question. What's going to happen when the human population get's out of hand, like it is right now? Will we have people hunts. It's all the same, we have to live with everyone humans and animals alike. Afterall they were here before us. SAVE THE WOLVES =)