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Brian R
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PostFri Sep 20, 2019 9:34 pm 
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You do all understand that you're not voting on anything, right? In my experience, NPS managers generally have a pre-determined vision, about abcd, that they are simply looking to validate. If the public comments they receive fail to validate their vision, they extend the comment period again and again--or just move on.

FWIW, I fully support Griz reintroduction in NOCA--with the caveat hiker beware, no closures of any park areas. Ditto wolves in areas they once lived.

I just spent a week in ONP and am amused at the expense and effort being put into goat removal. Seems to me bringing wolfie back home would save a lot of time. (And go a long way toward restoring the park generally.)
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Ski
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PostSat Sep 21, 2019 1:39 am 
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^ Translocation of wolves into Olympic National Park is not part of the Washington State Wolf Management Plan, nor would it be within the management guidelines of Olympic National Park.

The hope (of the Wolf Management Plan) is that the wolf will at some point populate the Olympic Peninsula (as well as the area immediately surrounding Mt. St. Helens, which is probably better habitat for them,) while allowing the animals to get there under their own power in their own time.

And yes, I would posit that most of the individuals involved here on the site - those interested in and participating in public lands management decisions - understand that the NEPA process does not make policy-making on public lands a democratic process.

=

jdk610, in the original post of this thread wrote:
Federal agencies recently re-opened the public comment period for North Cascades grizzly recovery. You have until October 24, 2019 to make your voice heard.
If you’d like to comment in support of North Cascades grizzly recovery, Conservation Northwest provides some helpful guidance and key talking points.

If you're interested in learning more about why it's important to restore grizzly bears to the North Cascades, this page is a good starting point.

Full disclosure: I’m a long-time member of this forum, and long-time supporter of wilderness and wildlife conservation. As such, I recently took a job working for Conservation Northwest, helping them with public outreach for North Cascades grizzly recovery. Posting here is part of that outreach.


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Kim Brown
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PostSat Sep 21, 2019 9:40 am 
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Yes, we know it is not a numbers game, which is the point made for unique comments and the compliment made to Conservation NW for providing links to the various Alternatives  vs. most organizations' strategy of blasting thier members  with a direction to fill out a form letter with no information about the project given; only only a crafted, highly slanted, "or else" Paragraph of Doom. When we use the phrase "count as one comment," it actually counts as one opinion, and nothing more, usually.

But in a few cases, volume has been a consideration by the agency.

Many of us on this forum have participated in public processes. Some have been disillusioned by them on occasion. But other times the process was fair, regardless of outcome.

The biggest take on past experience is the cut-throat tactics used by many organizations or motivated individuals, giving little or no actual information on the project, or simply outright lies.

And so we're back to the original compliment to Conservation NW for providing links to the agency project page.

Not sure about this one yet. I haven't any unique perspective, but I do think this time,  volume may have a consideration in the outcome. I understand that several gateway towns/communities are not all about the re-introduction of grizzlies. Though it is one opinion, I think if an entire town has a comment, it might be more weighty.

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RodF
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PostSat Sep 21, 2019 11:25 am 
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It will be interesting to see if Wilderness Watch continues to oppose ALL action alternatives, and endorse only the passive NO ACTION alternative in this final EIS, as they did in the draft EIS.  https://wildernesswatch.org/allow-natural-recovery-of-grizzlies-in-the-north-cascades

The advocated "

A natural recovery alternative would require working with British Columbia to protect grizzlies over a larger land base, and would provide for connectivity via protected habitat corridors." as if BC or WA would be likely to purchase a few thousand acres of farms and ranches spanning the Okanogan valley and close Hwy. 97 or build overpasses over it to create these corridors reconnecting the Cascades and Selkirks?

...or might it dawn on Wilderness Watch that their opposition is self-contradictory to their purported support for grizzly bear population recovery?

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PostSat Sep 21, 2019 2:16 pm 
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^ yeah.... that'll happen right after the BC Provincial Government takes action to restore their populations of native caribou.

I will not be holding my breath waiting.

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jdk610
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PostThu Sep 26, 2019 11:37 am 
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Latest update:

On October 7th, the National Park Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will be hosting a public meeting on the Draft North Cascades Grizzly Bear Restoration Plan/Environmental Impact Statement (Draft EIS). Through a lottery system, some participants will have the chance to provide oral public comments.

Where: Okanogan County Fairgrounds Agriplex, 175 Rodeo Trail Road, Okanogan, WA 98840
When: 5:00 - 8:30 p.m.

Attending this meeting and talking about why you support grizzly recovery is one of the best ways you can advocate for the North Cascades grizzly. Even if you don't step up to the mic, your presence alone will speak volumes.

If you are unable to make the meeting, please consider signing the following letter of support:
https://www.northcascadesgrizzly.org/locals-support-letter/

The letter can best be summed up as follows:
As long as grizzly restoration is guided by sound science and community input, including careful management to reduce and resolve potential conflicts, we support restoring grizzly bears to the North Cascades.

Jessica Kelley
Conservation Northwest
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JimmyBob
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PostFri Sep 27, 2019 1:27 pm 
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If the WA wildlife service treats the introduced bears the same they treat the wolves, there is little point.

They'll put money before any other concerns. frown.gif
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Anne Elk
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PostSat Sep 28, 2019 11:17 am 
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Somewhat relevant input:  4th hunter attacked within days in Montana  It always ends badly for the animal.  No one would consider limiting # of hikers/hunters, right?

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Ski
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PostSun Sep 29, 2019 10:11 am 
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Okay so I waited until I was suffering from a lack of sleep and hadn't had enough caffeine yet so I was my usual cheerful self and in fine form to submit my comment.

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treeswarper
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PostSun Sep 29, 2019 2:55 pm 
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jdk610 wrote:
Latest update:

On October 7th, the National Park Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will be hosting a public meeting on the Draft North Cascades Grizzly Bear Restoration Plan/Environmental Impact Statement (Draft EIS). Through a lottery system, some participants will have the chance to provide oral public comments.

Where: Okanogan County Fairgrounds Agriplex, 175 Rodeo Trail Road, Okanogan, WA 98840
When: 5:00 - 8:30 p.m.

Attending this meeting and talking about why you support grizzly recovery is one of the best ways you can advocate for the North Cascades grizzly. Even if you don't step up to the mic, your presence alone will speak volumes.

If you are unable to make the meeting, please consider signing the following letter of support:
https://www.northcascadesgrizzly.org/locals-support-letter/

The letter can best be summed up as follows:
As long as grizzly restoration is guided by sound science and community input, including careful management to reduce and resolve potential conflicts, we support restoring grizzly bears to the North Cascades.

Jessica Kelley
Conservation Northwest

I am not planning to go.  The local news outlets and our congressional rep are encouraging people to go and oppose the plan.  I do oppose it.  I think a trickle down from Canada approach would be better for bears and people.  But I fear the meeting will be noisy and full of people who want to turn the area into their oxymoronic state of liberty. Sounds like a good place to stay away from. 

The wolf program has been a pretty stupid and expensive experiment.  Wolves are obviously going to kill cows and other domestic critters.  There are a hell of a lot more of the latter out and about than in the good old days.  The local tribe has a wolf hunting program for tribal members to take part in.  Two packs have been killed off on non tribal lands....yup, it's a great program. (sarcasm).

Back to the bears.  How long will it take before that is considered a failure?  Don't the dams on the Skagit block salmon passage?  What are the bears going to feast on?  I suspect they'll mosey on down to Darrington or Mazama for snacks and will have to be killed.  I guess we'll have to stay tuned and find out.  I have the feeling that bears will be dumped no matter what the outcome of meetings and letters is.

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jdk610
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PostSun Sep 29, 2019 3:23 pm 
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Hi treeswarper,

I thought I would take the time to answer a couple of your questions.

Quote:
I think a trickle down from Canada approach would be better for bears and people.

Unfortunately, the North Cascades Ecosystem is geographically isolated enough by human development that the bears won't just trickle down. That is why we are supporting active restoration, and specifically, Alternative C. Alternative C involves placing 25 grizzly bears in the North Cascades Ecosystem (a 10,000 square mile area) over 5-10 years. This is a relatively small number of bears over a very large area. (In contrast, there are 25,000 - 35,000 black bears currently living in Washington state.)

Quote:
What are the bears going to feast on?

Bears in the North Cascades, and other similar ecosystems, actually don't eat a ton of salmon. Interestingly, 80% of their diet is vegetation, making these grizzlies true omnivores. The North Cascades provide plenty of the vegetation that grizzlies like to eat.

I'm not pretending that grizzly restoration won't be without its challenges. But time has shown us that they are not able to re-populate the area on their own, so if we don't support recovery now, the North Cascades grizzly will disappear forever.
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Ski
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PostSun Sep 29, 2019 3:27 pm 
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treeswarper wrote:
"Two packs have been killed off on non tribal lands..."

I believe your count is a bit low there, treeswarper. WDFW has exterminated more than two entire packs over the course of the last few years. (Refer to the "wolf" thread for the latest update on the extermination of the TOGO pack.)

treeswarper wrote:
Don't the dams on the Skagit block salmon passage?

Yes, but never let facts get in the way of ideologies or belief systems.
Just do like Shakti Gawain suggested - do that "creative visualization" thing and just "visualize" the upper Skagit teeming with bountiful runs of native anadromous salmonids and they'll just magically appear. lol.gif

I think your take on it is the same as mine: the chuckleheads running the show at WDFW are the same sort of chuckleheads currently in charge at NPS and USFWS.

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I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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Anne Elk
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PostSun Sep 29, 2019 3:37 pm 
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I agree with treeswarper (probably obvious).  And I'm as big an environmentalist as anyone (ie, I actually volunteer, write grants and do stuff for various causes).  But I'm also a pragmatist.  How do all those "save the wolves" folks feel now that 2+ packs had to be killed off?

Some years ago a Canadian friend was very involved with the founding of this organization Y2Y: Yellowstone to Yukon.  I haven't followed them so I don't know how successful their initiatives have been. This is the kind of thing that should be happening down here if we want griz back in NCNP.  Partner with the Canucks and get some habitat continuity restored between the NCascades and points north of the border, and let what griz "trickle down" do so.  Otherwise, it seems likely the bears with trickle downstream where the food sources are.  Or start chomping hikers.  We're lucky that we got NCNP put aside when we did.  Keeping species going in areas where they don't have enough habitat is just cruel.  huh.gif

Ski, you so funny when hammering home the meta-view.  borank.gif

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PostSun Sep 29, 2019 4:55 pm 
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Anne Elk wrote:
How do all those "save the wolves" folks feel now that 2+ packs had to be killed off?

That's a good question, but doubtless one that we'll never really get an honest answer to.

It's enough to say that the most recent planned public meeting about the Washington State Wolf Recovery Program (hosted by WDFW) was cancelled due to them receiving a number of death threats. Obviously those on at least one side of that "wolf" argument are not about to change their minds.
I'd submit the same probably holds true for those supporting or opposing the reintroduction of grizzly bears into an area they currently do not populate.

So now that we're going down this rabbit hole - this is the Stewardship thread, after all - let's consider for just a moment the degree of success we've had to date introducing, reintroducing, relocating, and/or translocating various species.
Get your pencil and paper ready. Make two columns and mark one "raving success" and the other "dismal failure":

Ready?

Common garden slug in North America

European Starling in North America

Atlantic Salmon (anywhere on the West Coast of North America)

Segmented earthworm in the Western Hemisphere

Domestic honeybee in North America

Domestic cats (anywhere)

Mountain Goats (Olympic National Park)

Domestic Sheep (anywhere in the Western Hemisphere)

Domestic Cattle (anywhere in the Western Hemisphere)

Snakes in the Hawaiian Islands

Mongoose in the Hawaiian Islands (to get rid of the snakes)

Rabbits in Australia

Zebra Mussels in the Great Lakes

Eastern Gray Squirrels (west of the Mississippi River)

Virginia Opossum (west of the Mississippi River)

Fisher (Olympic National Park)

Gray Wolf (Canis Lupus) anywhere south of the 49th parallel

.... and now you want to seriously consider bringing in yet another animal which from all indications has been effectively extirpated from the geographic area being considered?

Seriously?

Because we have such a great track record at mucking about with nature, right?

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I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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Anne Elk
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PostSun Sep 29, 2019 6:05 pm 
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Your muddling, there, Ski.  All the species on the list you made were not native.  The griz used to be native in the North Cascades; the problem now is the habitat - the size of the habitat they really need - has been carved up and invaded by humans.

But your point is taken - humans screw up a lot when it comes to tinkering w/wildlife.  There were a few successes though, remember - bringing back the bald eagle, and the California condor come to mind.

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