Recovery of the Gray Wolf

The gray wolf, an iconic species of the American West, had all but disappeared from landscape in the lower 48 states by the early 20th century. Now it roams free in nine states and is stable and healthy throughout its current range. This constitutes one of the greatest comebacks for an animal in U.S. conservation history. Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is re-affirming the success of this recovery with a proposal to remove all gray wolves from protection under Endangered Species Act (ESA). Continue reading

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Old Fears, New Hype Fuel CWD News

By Patrick Durkin, Green Bay Press Gazzette, Feb. 25, 2019

The frustrating uncertainties of chronic wasting disease
fired old fears for many folks the past two weeks after a Minnesota doctor
predicted CWD would probably soon jump from deer to humans. Continue reading

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Deer tests positive for CWD in Dickinson County, MI

October 18, 2018 Michigan DNR Release

A 4-year-old doe killed on a deer damage shooting permit in Dickinson County’s Waucedah Township has tested positive for chronic wasting disease, marking the first confirmation of the incurable deer disease within Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

The finding was verified by Michigan State University’s Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory in East Lansing and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa.

The deer was shot on an agricultural farm about 4 miles from the Michigan-Wisconsin border.

“We remain committed to maintaining healthy Michigan wildlife for the residents of, and visitors to, this great state, now and into the future,” said Michigan Department of Natural Resources Director Keith Creagh. “Fortunately, over the past few years, with the help of hunters, the U.P. CWD Task Force, DNR staffers and others, we are far better prepared to respond to threats posed by chronic wasting disease in the U.P.”

Continue reading

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Largest monarch population since 2007 announced

Monarch Joint Venture
Jan.30, 2019

The eastern North American monarch population estimate for the winter of 2018-2019 reports a population size of 6.05 hectares, as announced today by WWF- Mexico and the Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas (CONANP). This is the largest population we have seen since 2007, an increase of 144% compared to last year.


The large population this year is an encouraging sign for monarchs, and an inspiration for us to continue our work together. Good weather conditions during the breeding season supported the increase, as well as efforts across North America to protect and restore habitats. However, we cannot rely on persistent good growing-seasons to sustain monarchs into the future. Our efforts to get more high quality habitat in the ground matter for monarchs, and they must continue.


“We are invigorated by the good news about the eastern population this year,” said Wendy Caldwell, Executive Director of the Monarch Joint Venture, “but there is much work left to be done. With the recent release of an extremely small western population, we strive to embrace an all hands on deck approach to rebuilding this population and continuing to grow and sustain the eastern population.”



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CWD battle heats up in Minnesota

CWD battle heats up in Minnesota: Fatal deer disease keeps spreading, has crossed species

By John Myers / Forum News Service on Jan 13, 2019 at 2:04 p.m.


This emaciated deer in Iowa County, Wis., was later confirmed to have CWD. Most animals that carry the disease look healthy. It’s only in the final stages where they become sickly looking. Wisconsin DNR photo. 1 / 2

DULUTH — With Minnesota wildlife officials scrambling this winter to slow the spread of chronic wasting disease among wild deer in southeastern counties, and 55 Wisconsin counties now identified as CWD sites, the impacts of the disease are hitting closer to the Northland.

CWD, now confirmed in 25 states and two provinces, is always fatal to cervids — whitetail and mule deer, moose and elk. Studies show that once it infects more than one-third of the population, entire herds may be decimated.

In parts of southern Wisconsin, more than 50 percent of the wild deer are now infected with CWD. So far, there is no antidote, no vaccine for deer, no way to get rid of it.

But it’s not just deer populations that are at stake — it could be the future of deer hunting. Even if wild deer somehow persist on the landscape, it’s unclear how many hunters would still want to hunt them if CWD remains a possible threat to people. Continue reading

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