Wolves: Scathing Investigation Validates Sportsmen Distrust of Feds and ODFW

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Wolves: Scathing Investigation Validates Sportsmen Distrust of Feds and ODFW

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by Dominic Aiello, President

According to an investigative report published by the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Office of Inspector General, the US Fish and Wildlife Service and employees blatantly ignored agency rules to dishonestly protect wolves in NM.

While I quote both a reputable print media article as well as the report itself momentarily, I feel it’s worth stating that these conclusions only prove why rural Oregonians and sportsmen have a high level of distrust with both ODFW and the USFW.

13698059_10154288311782889_5840067659508560063_oAn article notes several complaints, specifically that, “the service protected ‘genetically valuable’ wolves in the wild, even after they preyed on cattle, did not tell residents when wolves were near and did not fully compensate ranchers for cattle killed by wolves,” according to the Albuquerque Journal.

The report substantiated the article’s claims: “[W]e learned that FWS had been aware of these issues and had already reassigned her [Elizabeth Jozwiak – pictured left] to another position by the time we received this complaint. Since then, MGWRP [Mexican Gray Wolf Recovery Program] employees told us, FWS has been documenting nuisance complaints and has attempted to improve communication with county residents; however, many of the county residents we spoke to said they were still concerned about poor communication with MGWRP and a perceived lack of concern for public safety. We also found that local ranchers have not consistently received full compensation for their livestock losses.”

The million dollar question remains, why has Elizabeth Jozwiak not been fired? Surely if you or I were determined to have blatantly ignored company rules we would not simply be reassigned.

Screen Shot 2016-07-18 at 7.40.11 PMAdditionally, in the comments of the above-mentioned article Bob Brister, a former WildEarth Guardians Organizer (an Environmental organization with a 2.7 out of 5 rating on Facebook) posted a clear message.

“Less whining, more wolves.”

The continuing attitude by environmental groups that there must be more wolves no matter the cost, and despite any prior agreement, must end. The “my way or the highway” (as shown by Mr. Brister) has no place in conservation.

As a result, we’re calling on Governor Kate Brown, Oregon legislators, and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to take note and keep this under consideration during future decision-making processes.

Rural Oregonians and sportsmen have a proven desire to protect habitat and wildlife, but actions by government agencies such as this solidify why we are often skeptical and hesitant to cooperate in any initiative – we are often lied to and double crossed.

Happy hunting, fishing, and trapping.

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Dominic Aiello
President