The Malheur National Wildlife Refuge wasn’t widely known beyond the birding community until it acquired its current “Y’all Qaeda” infestation. Here’s some background, from NPR . . .
The armed militants occupying Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Eastern Oregon come from as far away as Texas and Montana. But they are hardly the refuge’s first out-of-state visitors. Malheur Lake is a regional hub for hundreds of thousands of migrating waterfowl. By some measures, it boasts the greatest diversity of bird species in the entire state.
A century ago, that diversity attracted the attention of naturalist William Finley. He visited the lake in 1908 with his childhood friend and photography partner, Herman Bohlman. In an article in The Atlantic Monthly, Finley recalled: “Here we were standing on the high head-land looking out over the land of our quest. Here spread at our feet was a domain for wild fowl unsurpassed in the United States.”
Finley was so ecstatic that he fell out of his boat.
Trail camera photos confirm that Oregon’s famous wandering wolf, OR-7, has fathered at least two new pups.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist John Stephenson said Thursday that brings to seven the number of wolves in the Rogue pack, which lives on the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest in the Cascades of southwestern Oregon. That includes three pups from last year.
Biologists had confirmed the second set of pups last July, but didn’t know how many.
Oregon wolves, including the famous wandering wolf OR-7, have reached sufficient numbers to be considered for delisting as an endangered species in Oregon . . .
Wolves in Oregon have hit the threshold for consideration of taking them off the state endangered species list.
The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife announced Tuesday the latest wolf census confirms at least seven breeding pairs — six in northeastern Oregon and one, led by the famous wanderer OR-7, in the southern Cascades.
The state wolf management plan calls for a status review once there have been four breeding pairs producing pups that survive a year for three years running. That review will be presented to the state Fish and Wildlife Commission when it meets April 24 in Bend. The earliest a decision could be made would be at the commission’s June 5 meeting in Salem.
Oregon’s wandering wolf, OR-7, has so far eluded attempts to put a new GPS tracking collar on him.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife biologist John Stephenson tells The Oregonian (http://bit.ly/1E5QRZY) that he and another biologist backpacked into the wilds of the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest in the southern Cascades and set out traps to catch OR-7. But neither OR-7, nor his mate, nor any of their pups stepped into one.
The biologists plan to try again after hunting season ends Nov. 7.
Oregon has had a ban on killing wolves since September 2011 . . .
As long as wolves have been making their comeback, biologists and ranchers have had a decidedly Old West option for dealing with those that develop a taste for beef: Shoot to kill. But for the past year, Oregon has been a “wolf-safe” zone, with ranchers turning to more modern, nonlethal ways to protect livestock.
While the number of wolves roaming the state has gone up, livestock kills haven’t — and now conservation groups are hoping Oregon can serve as a model for other Western states working to return the predator to the wild.