Letter: Wolves

January 29, 2014 

I read with great interest the Jan. 15 Opinion page concerning wolves and the hiring of a trapper to reduce the number of wolves. Amazing opinions! Elk were like cattle before the wolf came; hunters should toughen up; streambeds in Yellowstone Park were saved by the wolf; worldwide negative publicity, bears and lions kill more elk; car accidents will decline due to wolves; start a wolf-viewing business; farmers get more money for crop loss than ranchers get for wolf kills; if we kill some wolves now we will have to kill more in the future; stop elk hunting and the problem is solved.

There may be a modicum of truth/fact in some of these points. Added all together they do not add up to letting a predator become overpopulated to a point where the predator wipes out its prey and starts migrating to greener pastures or starves to death itself or cannibalizes another pack.

We have spent an unbelieveable amount of money on wolves. What did we get for this expenditure? Fewer elk, deer and other wildlife, upset ranchers and hunters, business owners going broke and less revenue for small-town Idaho, but the mission to end hunting continues.

RICK RIETMANN, Boise

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