Category Archives: Tourism

Support H.B. 105 – Protect Denali Wolves 

Please take a moment of your time to reach out to State Senators in Alaska, urge them to support recently introduced legislation which would prohibit wolf hunting and trapping in two areas adjacent to Denali National Park and Preserve. House Bill 105 passed the House recently and will now be considered by the 20 members of the State Senate. Should the measure pass the Senate it will then go to the Governor for his signature. 

Please copy and paste (feel free to personalize*) the following letter:

Dear Senator, 

The Alaska House of Representatives recently passed legislation to prohibit wolf hunting and trapping in two areas adjacent to Denali National Park and Preserve.  House Bill 105, sponsored by Congressman Josephson, which seeks to ensure healthy wolf population for park visitors to enjoy, is worthy of your support. 

Denali is recognized as one of the best places in the world for people to see wolves in the wild. Each year, tens of thousands of visitors see wolves along Denali Park Road. More than anywhere else in Alaska, wolves in the eastern part of Denali provide significant benefits to tourism.

The harvest of wolves, particularly breeding animals, has the potential to decrease wolf numbers, influence social structure and reproduction, alter wolf behavior, and decrease opportunities for wolf viewing. Thus, even if harvest occurring outside of the park has little effect on large-scale wolf population dynamics, it may still have significant effects on visitor experience. 

The Denali National Park and Preserve is a major tourist destination that hosts more than half a million visitors yearly, which, in turn, provides a significant boost to the local and statewide economies. Previous buffer zones have protected wildlife populations adjacent to the park from hunting and trapping. After eliminating the buffer zone in 2010 visitor wolf sightings dropped from 45 percent to just 6 percent in under 4 years.

Denali National Park and Preserve is an important tourism asset, and a big part of the attraction of the park is, of course, the ability to see wildlife in their natural habitat,” said Congressman Josephson. “This bill will help make sure that future generations of Alaskans and visitors can be moved, as I have been, by seeing these amazing animals in this unforgettable place “

The continued and heartless slaughter of Denali wolves has disrupted their society and destabilized the packs, which in turn compromised not only the hunting capabilities, but the very survival of remaining members. Hunting and trapping most often removes key pack members or alpha wolves, which will usually will lead to the disintegration of an entire family group. 

For example, in 2012, the trapping of the pregnant alpha female wolf from the Grant Creek group led to the group declining from 15 wolves to only 3 that year. Then in 2016 one of the two remaining East Fork wolves was shot just outside park boundaries. Because of the shooting of the radio-collared gray male (dubbed “1508 GM” by park biologists) the East Fork pack was reduced to one lone black wolf who, at that time, had pups, now presumed dead.

Please 

help prevent this type of tragic situation from ever happening again by voting in favor of House Bill 105. Protect Denali National Park Wolves.

Thank you for your time and consideration of this extremely important matter,

Your name here. 

Send to the Senate President: 

Senator.Pete.Kelly@akleg.gov 

Cc to:

Senator.David.Wilson@akleg.govSenator.Bill.Wielechowski@akleg.govSenator.Natasha.vonImhof@akleg.govSenator.Gary.Stevens@akleg.govSenator.Bert.Stedman@akleg.govSenator.Donny.Olson@akleg.govSenator.Peter.Micciche@akleg.gov, Senator.Kevin.Meyer@akleg.govSenator.Anna.MacKinnon@akleg.govSenator.Shelley.Hughes@akleg.govSenator.Lyman.Hoffman@akleg.govSenator.Cathy.Giessel@akleg.govSenator.Berta.Gardner@akleg.gov, Senator.Dennis.Egan@akleg.govSenator.Mike.Dunleavy@akleg.govSenator.Mia.Costello@akleg.govSenator.John.Coghill@akleg.govSenator.Click.Bishop@akleg.govSenator.Tom.Begich@akleg.gov 

Please share this action, the wolves need all the help we can muster as you can see from this response which I just received from Senator Berta Gardner:

 Thank you for sending your comments to my office. While I would be inclined to support such a measure I do not believe that the Senate Majority will give the idea much of a chance. Just the other day they sent out a press release saying that they were “dismayed by the environmentalist agenda” being proposed by the House.

I have seen and enjoyed the Denali Park wolf pack, and been saddened by news of deaths.

Berta

Senator Berta Gardner

Anchorage District I

Spenard Midtown UMed 

*Note: When personalizing your e-mail, please refrain from discussing the population decline within the park which seems to be rebounding without a buffer as indicated in this chart.

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Ancient Forests, Wolves, Wildlife and The Wrangell Timber Sale 

The U.S. Forest Service is seeking public comment on a proposed timber sale  on Wrangell Island, which is in the Alexander Archipelago in the Alaska Panhandle of southeastern Alaska. The island is just 30 miles long and 5 to 14 miles wide, contains an abundance of wildlife and is separated from the mainland by the Blake Channel.

The Forest Service released five alternatives in their draft environmental impact statement for the Wrangell Island Project on June 2nd. Its preferred alternative would allow two thirds of the acreage to be selectively harvested and a third clear cut, producing about 65 million board feet, and could build up to 17 miles of new national forest roads, some of which will stay open to the public and about 15 miles of temporary roads. The earliest timber sale would be mid to late summer 2017, and targets the largest, highest-value tree stands, which are generally the areas that are also most ecologically important to the forest and wildlife that live there. It seems that, once again, the Forest Service has disregarded the evidence of the probable impacts of its timber program on wolves, other wildlife populations, salmon, and critical habitat necessary for their survival.
The five alternatives range from about 43 million board feet to 65 million or no timber sale at all.

Buck Lindekugel, an attorney for the Southeast Alaska Conservation Council (SEACC), said “Instead of cutting the rest of the old growth that supports a whole variety of uses on Wrangell Island, the Forest Service ought to look at ways of integrating stewardship, restoration activities and supplying timber off the existing road system to the small mills in the area.”

17 miles of new national forest roads!
Already wolf hunting is rife on Wrangell Island with “bag limits” of 5 wolves and portions of the island are subject to Alaska’s infamous “intensive predator management program” encouraging even further reduction of the wolf population. As we have seen on Prince of Wales, logging and roads initiate many harmful effects, including the “overharvest”, ie. poaching, of wolves.

The time has come for Southeast Alaska to no longer rely on the timber industry as an economic driver. The Forest Service should manage the National Forests in Southeast Alaska for a host of public values that support the tourism and fishing economy of today; the driving economic forces are, and continue to be, tourism and recreation.

In your own words, please comment against the proposed Wrangell Timber Sale. Tell the Forest Service that you support “Alternative 1 – which is the “no-action” alternative because in this alternative, none of the proposed activities would occur. Only approved forest management activities not related to the proposed project can and would continue, and road management would be based on the already existing access and travel management plan for Wrangell Island.

Comments can be made via email to comments-alaska-tongass-wrangell@fs.fed.us  with “Wrangell Island Project” in the subject line.

*COMMENTS SHOULD BE RECEIVED NO LATER THAN JULY 18, 2016. Comments, including anonymous comments, will be accepted at any time. However, comments posted after the close of the designated comment period (July 18th) may not be able to be given full consideration.

Please also sign this petition:

No logging in places critical for Tongass wildlife and wild salmon, from Alaska Wilderness League.

The Tongass offers the country’s largest remaining swath of ancient forest, as well as an estimated one third of the world’s remaining temperate rainforest. It is far past time for an end to old-growth logging and destruction of habitat essential for endemic species found only in this biologically rich region.

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For additional, in depth, information  please see Wrangell Island Project Draft | Environmental Impact Statement

Related content:

The economic reality of Alaska’s timber industry

Senator should heed council on Tongass, accept compromise

The future of the Tongass Forest lies beyond logging

Copyright © 2016 [COPYRIGHT Intheshadowofthewolf, name and webpage]. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

It’s far past time for Alaska to protect Denali wolves with a buffer zone

Commentary by Marybeth Holleman

One of the two remaining East Fork wolves of Denali National Park was shot this past weekend by a trophy hunter at a bear baiting station just outside park boundaries.

If this sounds eerily familiar, that’s because it is. This is just what happened exactly one year ago, when the pregnant female of the East Fork group was shot by an Outside trophy hunter at a bear baiting station in the same area. The loss of that one pregnant female wolf in 2015 led to the disintegration of the entire East Fork group, also called the Toklats, from 15 wolves down to just two this spring.

And now, with last weekend’s shooting of the radio-collared gray male dubbed “1508 GM” by park biologists, it appears the East Fork is down to one lone black wolf.

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This is a historic loss. It leaves one remaining member of the wolf group studied by Dr. Adolph Murie, the subjects of his groundbreaking 1944 book, “The Wolves of Mount McKinley.” It leaves one from the group that Dr. Gordon Haber continued to study for another 43 years, until his untimely 2009 death in a plane crash while studying wolves.

This one family group of wolves was studied for a continuous 70 years, making them, along with the community of chimpanzees studied by Jane Goodall, the world’s oldest-known, longest-studied large mammal social lineage in the wild. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that this gave the East Fork wolves inestimable scientific value.

But the state of Alaska apparently has no interest in such rare scientific value, no pride in a scientific record rivaled only by that of Goodall’s chimpanzee research. The state has allowed this valuable public wildlife resource to be decimated by hunting and trapping for decades. And the National Park Service has clearly failed its mandate of protecting natural processes in the park.

The state also seems to lack regard for the hundreds of thousands of visitors each year who come to Denali to see wolves, many of them Alaskans. With the loss of the East Fork group in 2015, and the Grant Creek group in 2012 (also from hunting/trapping along the park boundary), viewing success of Park wolves plummeted. Almost half of park visitors were seeing wolves in the park until these deaths; now only about 5 percent are so fortunate.

The East Fork wolves traditionally denned near the Murie cabin at Toklat River, and were the wolves most visitors saw throughout the 1980s and 1990s — until a series of deaths at the hands of humans beginning in 2001 compromised the family group. With just a half-dozen inexperienced yearlings left, they shifted their territory and became even more susceptible to trapping and hunting on the northeastern boundaries of the park. They remained one of the most-viewed family groups until last spring.

The fault for the demise of these world-famous wolves rests squarely on the shoulders of Alaska Department of Fish and Game Commissioner Sam Cotten. He may not have pulled the trigger, but he permitted it…

Full article here.

Share your thoughts with the Commissioner, speak up for Denali National Park Wolves:

Phone: (907)465-4100
Email: sam.cotten@alaska.gov and to Governor Walker’s website: Share Your Viewpoint with the Governor / Lt. Governor

Snail mail: 1255 West 8th St. P.O. Box 25526 Juneau, Alaska 99802-5526

Department Telephone : 465-6141
Department Fax: 465-2332
Commissioner’s office email: dfg.commissioner@alaska.gov

Two sample emails (the second email addresses the situation with the loss of the remaining East Fork wolf and pups) please personalize:

Dear Commissioner Cotten,

The wolf population in Alaska’s Denali National Park and Preserve has plummeted to its lowest level in the park’s historical record, due in part to wolf hunting and trapping inside the preserve and on state lands along the park boundary. I strongly urge that you immediately halt all wolf hunting around Denali National Park, as well as secure a permanent no-kill buffer along the park boundary from the State of Alaska.

The park’s wolf population has dwindled from 143 to 48 in less than eight years. This year the population has been further reduced. These losses have not only diminished the chance to see wild wolves, but have also undercut the integrity of the entire ecosystem—much of which is designated wilderness. While the park’s primary purpose is to “protect intact the globally significant Denali ecosystems,” it is certainly failing to do so.

The continued and heartless slaughter of Denali wolves has disrupted their society and destabilized the packs, which in turn completely compromised not only the hunting capabilities, but the very survival of remaining members. Hunting and trapping most often removes key pack members or alpha wolves, which will usually will lead to the disintegration of an entire family group. For example, in 2012, the trapping of the pregnant alpha female wolf from the Grant Creek group led to the group declining from 15 wolves to only 3 that year.

Now, in 2016, one of the two remaining East Fork wolves of Denali National Park was shot this past spring by a trophy hunter at a bear baiting station just outside park boundaries. Because of the shooting of a radio-collared gray male (dubbed “1508 GM” by park biologists), the East Fork “pack” is/was down to one lone black wolf who had pups; now presumed dead.

The State of Alaska has repeatedly denied public petitions over the past eight years asking for an end to wolf hunting/trapping in the Preserve and around Denali and a replacement of a buffer zone. Wolves have all but completely vanished from one of the nation’s largest and most iconic national parks. Alaska has efficiently, and shamefully, squelched visitors chances of seeing wolves.

Please advise the superintendent of Denali National Park to halt all wolf killing in the entire park and preserve, and create a permanent wolf buffer zone.

Allowing the demise of Denali’s wolves is literally shooting the goose laying the golden (tourism) eggs.

Thankyou for your time and consideration of this extremely important matter,

Your name

Second email:

 Dear Commissioner Cotten,

It is my understanding that the pups from The Toklat pack were observed alone, and without a pack presence, earlier last month when National Park Service pilots flew over their den’s location.

With the shooting, earlier this year,  of the radio-collared gray male dubbed “1508 GM” by park biologists, it appeared that the East Fork was down to one black female wolf attempting the near impossible: caring for her pups alone.

Mismanagement within the state park, and along the borders, has created a situation causing the demise of numerous beloved Denali wolves, creating a historically low wolfpack population in the area.

Last year the pregnant female of the East Fork group was shot by an “trophy” hunter at a bear baiting station. The loss of that one pregnant female wolf led to the disintegration of the entire East Fork group, from 15 wolves down to just two prior to the shooting of “1508 GM”.

Now we are left with one lone survivor (now “missing”), who cannot tend properly to her pups.  Without another adult to hunt and feed the nursing mother, the pups will likely starve to death. Chances are highly probable that these pups have not survived as the den, recently, has been observed unoccupied.

This horrific sequence of events likely spell the extinction of the world-renowned East Fork family group, all because Alaska failed not once, but twice, to do the judicious and intelligent thing, and close the area.

Enough is enough. Protect Denali’s wolves with a no hunting/trapping buffer zone.

Thankyou for your time and consideration of this extremely time sensitive matter,

Your name here

Please also send a copy of the above emails to Governor Walker here.

Sign the petition from Marybeth Holleman – Coauthor of Among Wolves: bit.ly/28SQSsq

Please sign the petition from Denali Citizens Council: bit.ly/1QzbPIV

And the petition from @nywolforg: http://goo.gl/MD1pdq

 

Insert image: Maxime Riendeau

Copyright © 2016 [COPYRIGHT Intheshadowofthewolf, name and webpage]. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

Stop Old-Growth Logging on Prince of Wales | Save Alaska’s Island Wolf Habitat

TIME SENSITIVE ACTION ALERT 

Please take action by February 22. Easily submit your comments here: bit.ly/1PPsKTs or below, at bottom of this post, on the Forest Services’ website or via email.
Please also sign this petition: Stop old-growth clearcutting in the Tongass National Forest from #Earthjustice  encouraging a stop to the Big Thorne timber project in Southeast #Alaska on Prince of Wales:

bit.ly/StopTheBigThorneTimberSale  and this one while it is still open: Protect America’s Rainforest from old-growth logging. Also this new petition from  Defenders (petition can be signed by anyone from anywhere, if outside of U.S. select other)
Thankyou.The area is home to what is left of the islands population of Alexander  #ArchipelagoWolves (approximately only 50 individuals). Since Secretary Jewell did not protect this imperiled species under the #ESA, this will be our only hope in saving the wolves habitat. Earthjustice filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Forest Service aimed at the destructive practice of old growth logging on POW and certainly could use your support.

Please share this alert, this is our last hope for this diminished population of wolves.

#BeMyVoice

Thankyou.

Background information:
The U.S. Forest Service issued a Draft Environment Impact Statement (DEIS) to amend the Land Management Plan for the Tongass National Forest.
The U.S. Forest Service amendment to the Tongass Plan aims to continue old-growth clearcutting.
The DEIS’s preferred alternative aims to end most old-growth logging within 16 years. While some important watersheds would become off limits to old-growth logging, the plan still calls for high levels of old-growth clearcuts — 490 million board feet of old growth to be logged over the next 15 years. The plan will further endanger the Alexander Archipelago wolf, and their home, the temperate rainforests that are so important to the planet, as well as allow more disastrous timber sales like the Big Thorne. The Forest Service is obviously refusing to consider ending old-growth clearcutting in five years, as many conservation groups have called for.
The amendment was originally intended to direct a transition away from decades of controversial and damaging old-growth logging, but the “preferred alternative” would allow continued clearcutting of remaining old-growth forest for many years.
*Be a voice for the imperiled Alexander Archipelago Wolves. Since Secretary Jewell did not protect the wolves under the ESA, the logging projects will move forward sealing the fate of the wolves.

*Written or electronic comments will be accepted for 90 days, ending February 22 – 2016, and should be submitted to: Forest Supervisor, Tongass National Forest, Attn: Forest Plan Amendment, 648 Mission Street Ketchikan, AK 99901.
Comments may also be sent via email to: comments-alaska-tongass@fs.fed.us or via facsimile to (907) 228-6292.
For additional information, please contact Susan Howle, Project Manager, at 907-228-6340, orshowle@fs.fed.us.
Follow these links for additional information:

1.usa.gov/1SQ7Wxf

1.usa.gov/1SQ8bbF

bit.ly/1X50dlo

Please comment against this disastrous plan, already the average distance to roads within GMU2 is 2.1 miles & only 1.7 miles on POW island itself. With such high road density already in place there is little secure habitat.

Sample comment, please personalize:

Dear Supervisor Earl Stewart,

I am opposed to old growth logging for 15 more years in the Tongass National Forest. Furthermore, allowing the harvest of 148.9 million board feet from approximately 6,186 acres of old-growth and 2,299 acres of young-growth near Thorne Bay and Coffman Cove on Prince of Wales Island within the Thorne Bay Ranger District is unacceptable. It is essential that the U.S. Forest Service halt the Big Thorne timber project, which threatens to destroy large swaths of essential Prince of Wales habitat for Alexander Archipelago wolves and their primary prey, Sitka black-tailed deer  (Already the average distance to roads within GMU2 is 2.1 miles & only 1.7 miles on POW island itself. With such high road density already in place there is little secure habitat.The Big Thorne project will also create additional new logging roads, increasing human access and the associated hunting and trapping pressure on the imperiled island wolf populations).

Without any federal protection the only long-term solution to the Alexander Archipelago wolves’ peril is to stop old-growth logging in the Tongass National Forest and to preserve the last remaining big trees that wolves and so many other animals need. Without an end to old-growth logging, no amount of hunting regulations, alone, can save the wolves. Please transition away from old growth logging promptly, and please halt the timber sale on POW.
Thankyou for your time and consideration of this extremely important matter,

Your name

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More information/talking points can be found here.

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No part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

Just 89 of these Alaskan wolves remain…now hold on a minute

Just 89 of these Alaskan wolves remain, really? Could there possibly be just 89 wolves left on Prince of Wales and accompanying islands?

No, there are not just 89 Alexander Archipelago Wolves on Prince of Wales and satellite islands, there are possibly only 50 which the Interior Department did not grant protection under the Endangered Species Act . Fish and Game reported an estimated population of 89 wolves on and around Prince of Wales in the fall of 2014.

This estimate did not account for the 29 wolves reported taken in the 2014/2015 winter hunting and trapping season (1/3rd of the entire population), nor did it account for any wolves illegally killed during that time or since, which studies indicate are substantial. The estimate also, obviously, does not include further unreported take nor does it include the 5 wolves reported to date (out of a quota of nine) taken this winter. Bear in mind it is nearly impossible to enforce such a small quota. This is evident from the quota for 2014/2015 being exceeded by 16% despite an emergency order closing the season. The smaller the quota, the greater the chances are of the quota being exceeded. This extremely low population estimate (50 to, at best and prior to this year’s season, 60 wolves is confirmed in this U.S. Forest Service briefing paper, which also notes the drastic decline in breeding female wolves, and I quote “The sex ratio of wolves in the survey area has become significantly skewed. In 2013 the proportion of females in the sampled population was close to 0.50. The proportion of females observed in the sample population for 2014 was 0.25.”

Remember this is data from 2014! Certainly it is safe to assume that the reason USFWS, during their field visit to over a dozen den sites this past spring, found only one active den with just one pup, is because there are barely any female wolves left! 

Indeed, Data in the Alaska Department of Fish and Games’ report shows that, as of fall 2014, only 7 to 32 female Archipelago wolves remain. That is 7 to 32 female wolves in an approximate 2,600 square mile area, if all the female wolves were on Prince of Wales itself and not the accompanying islands. This would be possibly 1 breeding wolf per 371.4 square miles.

Then there’s the poaching. 

On September 15, 2015 The Alaska Federal Subsistence Management Board released a  statement regarding the hunt for these imperiled wolves in GMU 2. The ISC (Interagency Staff Committee) found significant illegal wolf harvest is occurring in Unit 2, and requested that the Subsistence Board direct the USFS and the USFWS to begin coordinated law enforcement efforts to ensure illegal take of wolves in Unit 2 is stopped, and that the local USFS manager had also requested additional law enforcement officer support in Unit 2 during the wolf hunting and trapping seasons. However with 3,000 miles of logging roads in the area, 580 alone in the Big Thorne timber project area, as well as habitat destruction from decades of logging, wolf poaching is rife and nearly impossible to curb.

But, don’t worry folks, the U.S.Fish and Wildlife Service believes there are plenty of Alexander Archipelago Wolves on Planet Earth, a whopping 850 to 2,700!! Note: This extremely wide range population estimate (with approximately 62 percent living in British Columbia where they can be hunted and 38 percent occupying southeastern Alaska) is evidence of their lack of knowledge about the species’ actual status.

The true culprit behind the lack of ESA protection for this imperiled species ~ logging. The Big Thorne timber sale.

Not just logging but more importantly, existing regulations (which have not been adhered to) with the failing taxpayer supported logging  projects on Prince of Wales which have not provided adequate enough protection to ensure persistence of population numbers of this unique species. As noted in the U.S. Forest Service briefing paper, twice, the timber sales were of utmost importance and obviously outrank the persistence and survival of this species:

“A sixty percent decline in the wolf population in a single year potentially increases the probability of ESA listing and will almost certainly become a factor in ongoing litigation against timber sales critical to the Tongass Young-growth Transition Strategy (e.g., Big Thorne).” And: “It is expected that Plaintiffs in litigation against the Big Thorne timber sale will use these numbers to argue for judgement against the Forest Service based on potential additional harm to the wolf. Effects to wolves are one of the primary issues in litigation against the Big Thorne project. The Big Thorne EIS discloses that short-term adverse impacts on local wolf populations will result from project implementation.

Say Goodbye to the Alexander Archipelago Wolves on Prince of Wales and accompanying islands, and, for that matter….eventually on Planet Earth.

Copyright © 2015 [COPYRIGHT Intheshadowofthewolf, name and webpage]. All Rights Reserved.

No part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

 

 

Stand For Archipelago Wolves on POW

Conservationists and environmental groups have long sought Endangered Species Act protections for the wolves of the Alexander Archipelago. The fight over Tongass wolves goes back at least two decades. Secretary Sally Jewell, of the Department of Interior, is expected to make a decision regarding the endangered status of the Alexander Archipelago Wolves on Prince of Wales islands by the end of this year. Encourage ESA protection for this imperiled species with another email, and/or a phone call. At the bottom of this post you will find the contact information you need.

Feel free to cut and paste my email, send as is, or personalize to your liking, and, as always, thankyou for your efforts on behalf of the little dark wolves on Prince of Wales.

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Dear Secretary Jewell,

Please list the Alexander Archipelago Wolf (Canis Lupus Ligoni) as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act.
Sadly, despite a confirmed 60 percent population decline on Prince of Wales and accompanying islands, ADF&G and the Federal Subsistence Board (FSB) opened the wolf hunting and trapping season with a 9 wolf quota. The season closed when 5 wolves were reported “harvested” (slaughtered). The very fact that the season opened with such a very small quota is evidence that officials are well aware of the fact that this is an imperiled species. The closure was an attempt to ensure the slaughter does not exceed the combined  Federal/State  kill quota set at 9 wolves.
Meanwhile, as the Alexander Archipelago Wolves slip towards extinction, ADF&G and the USFS continue to “refine population estimation techniques used to establish  Guideline Harvest Levels for Unit 2 wolves”. With the Federal Subsistence Management Board setting a “skin sealing” requirement of 14 days and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game setting a skin sealing requirement of 30 Days, the total legal “take” of the wolves will not be established until the 3rd week of January and does not include the number of wolves poached, which could be substantial.

With a population as low as possibly 50 individuals, this year’s season may have pushed this iconic species to the brink of extinction.

Data in the Alaska Department of Fish and Games’ report shows that, as of fall 2014, only 7 to 32 female Archipelago wolves remain. That is/was 7 to 32 female wolves in an approximate 2,600 square mile area. This would be possibly 1 breeding wolf per 371.4 square miles (prior to this year’s season). Even if they are able to reproduce at these reduced numbers, the risk of inbreeding is high, putting them at further risk of extinction due to the loss of genetic diversity, which can negatively affect the species in many ways; weakened immune systems unable to fight off disease, skeletal deformities, and/or smaller litters with higher mortality, to name a few. Genetic diversity is always a crucial factor with isolated species.

This drastic decline in numbers must be arrested and a recovery plan should be immediately established. Without ESA protection the Alexander Archipelago wolves fate will be sealed. Extirpation will be imminent.

**Further evidence of a dire situation was proven when Alaska Department of Fish and Game, during their field season this spring,  visited about a dozen known den sites and found only one active den, with only one pup, indicating either entire wolf packs have been wiped out or have been decimated to a point leading to their fragmentation.**

Threats to this unique subspecies are amplified because the wolf represents a distinct and isolated gene pool and now very few individuals remain. The Alexander Archipelago wolves are isolated and genetically distinct from other North American wolves because of tidewater barriers and coastal mountains that limit migration to the rest of the continent. The GMU-2 population is further isolated and may be genetically distinct from other Alexander Archipelago wolves. Scientific evidence determines that coastal wolves endemic to temperate rainforests are diverged from neighbouring, interior continental wolves; a finding that demands new strategies must be taken managing this species if they are to survive.

A 75% decline in population is most immediately caused by the direct take of wolves from significant poaching and the unsustainable legal take. However, the underlying cause is extensive logging and roads (The POW Complex has over 4,200 miles of roads, and the average distance to roads within GMU2 is 2.1 miles and, disgracefully only 1.7 miles on POW Island itself.) contributing to a marked increase in poaching of the wolf, as well as the overharvest of wolves. Certainly this situation underscores the importance of endangered or threatened status for the wolves on Prince of Wales islands. Without immediate policy changes on the part of the state and federal governments, the Alexander Archipelago Wolves on Prince of Wales and satellite islands future is grim, as they do, indeed, appear to be on their way to extinction.

It is obvious that the situation for wolves in Game Management Unit 2 is alarming, and that immediate, decisive action is necessary to rescue this population from extirpation. The time has come for the Forest Service to manage the Tongass for a host of public values that support the Southeast Alaska tourism. The time has come for this diminished, and unique, population of wolves to finally get the protection they so desperately need if they are to survive.
Alexander Archipelago wolves are a symbol of wilderness and ecological integrity. They are important in their own right and as a key part of a functioning predator- prey system. In Southeast Alaska, wolves bring significant economic benefits to communities as part of the package that lures more than one million visitors to the Tongass National Forest every year and that contributes more than $1 billion to the Southeast Alaska economy.
Please provide protection for the POW wolves under the ESA.
Thankyou for your time and consideration of this extremely urgent matter,

Your name

Here are a few ways you can contact the U.S. Department of the Interior and Secretary Jewell:

Mailing Address:
Department of the Interior
1849 C Street, N.W.
Washington DC 20240

Phone: (202) 208-3100
or directly to Mrs Jewell’s office: 202-208-7351

E-Mail: feedback@ios.doi.gov

Or directly to Mrs. Jewell: Secretary_jewell@ios.doi.gov

Or through the DOI Feedback form

Thankyou for your support!

Copyright © 2015 [COPYRIGHT Intheshadowofthewolf, name and webpage]. All Rights Reserved.

No part of this publication may be reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

Emergency Tweetstorm: Save Denali Wolves

Tweetstorm for Denali National Park Wolves (Updated May/2016)


Thankyou for your support.

1a. Wolf pop. has declined from 143 in 2007 to possibly below 48 in 2016. Reinstate emergency buffer zone #ProtectDenaliWolves  @AKGovBillWalker

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1b. Wolf pop. has declined from 143 in 2007 to possibly below 48 in 2016. Reinstate emergency buffer zone #ProtectDenaliWolves @DenaliNPS

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1c. Now, in 2016, one of the 2 remaining East Fork wolves of Denali was shot, decimating the population  #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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1d. Now, in 2016, one of the 2 remaining East Fork wolves of Denali was shot, decimating the population  #ProtectDenaliWolves @DenaliNPS

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2. #Alaska seems to lack regard for the visitors from around the world who come to Denali to see #wolves @AKGovBillWalker @DenaliNPS

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2b. #Alaska seems to lack compassion for the wolf families struggling to survive in the park #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker @DenaliNPS

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2c. One of the two remaining East Fork wolves of Denali National Park was shot May/2016! #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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2c. This is just what happened exactly 1 yr ago, when the pregnant female of East Fork group was shot. #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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2d. The loss of that 1 pregnant female wolf in 2015 led 2 the disintegration of entire East Fork group @AKGovBillWalker #ProtectDenaliWolves

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2e. The “Toklats”, reduced frm 15 wolves to just 2 this spring are now a pack of ONE @AKGovBillWalker #ProtectDenaliWolves

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2f. The East Fork is down to 1 black wolf. The gray male dubbed 1508 GM killed at a bear baiting station #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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3. #ProtectDenaliWolves #StandForWolves Please sign the petition: goo.gl/MD1pdq

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4. Restore Denali wolf buffer. Please sign the petition from Denali Citizens Council #ProtectDenaliWolves  goo.gl/p0ncnu

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5.#ProtectDenaliWolves Sign the petition from Marybeth Holleman – Coauthor of Among Wolves, Anchorage, AK goo.gl/K1DmcP

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6. Re-establish a buffer zone to ban wolf hunting & trapping on state land adjacent to the park. #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker @Alaska

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7. #ProtectDenaliWolves Shame on Alaska Board of Game 4 rejecting petitions 2 re-establish wolf hunting & trapping buffer zone around the park

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8. It’s far past time for #Alaska to #ProtectDenaliWolves with a buffer zone. bit.ly/1OzCgtM
@AKGovBillWalker

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9. For 6 years now, there has been a notable decline in the number of wolf sightings in Denali National Park & Preserve #ProtectDenaliWolves

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10. A report from the NPS is suggesting that wolf hunting could be to blame for population decline. #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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11. Research indicates that wolf mortality rates in Alaska’s Denali National Park have recently spiked to worrying levels. #ProtectDenaliWolves

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12. Population of 48 wolves in 2015 is the lowest estimated wolf density since monitoring began in 1986. #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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13. It is time for Alaska 2 admit: trapping/hunting of Denali wolves has contributed unprecedented decline in wolf numbers #ProtectDenaliWolves

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14. A population of 48 wolves in 2015 is the lowest estimated wolf density since monitoring began in 1986. #ProtectDenaliWolves @interior

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15. The state & federal governments need 2 immediately close Denali & its surrounding area 2 any further wolf killing. #ProtectDenaliWolves

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16. The “unprecedented” decline of the Denali wolf population began in the winter of 2007. #ProtectDenaliWolves

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17. In the winter of 2007,  approximately 10% of entire park population was killed by trappers and hunters NE of the park. #ProtectDenaliWolves

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18. Hunting around park’s borders  directly related 2 Denali’s native wolf pop. decline #ProtectDenaliWolves reinstate buffer @AKGovBillWalker

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19. The park’s primary purpose is 2 protect intact the globally significant Denali ecosystems stated PEER Director J. Ruch #ProtectDenaliWolves

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20. Dysfunctional wildlife politics will end up killing the wolf laying huge golden eggs 4 Alaska’s tourist economy~J Ruch #ProtectDenaliWolves

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21. The % of sightseers who actually spotted a wolf has dropped from 45% to only 6% as of last summer. #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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22. More than anywhere else in Alaska, wolves in the eastern part of Denali provide significant benefits 2 Alaska tourism. #ProtectDenaliWolves

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23. Denali visitors contribute millions of $$$ each year 2 state economy. Denali visitors want 2C wolves @AKGovBillWalker #ProtectDenaliWolves

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24. #ProtectDenaliWolves Wolf viewing opportunities have historically been provided by three packs that den and range near the park road…

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25. These three family groups have been severely disrupted by trapping & hunting on state lands east of the park boundary. #ProtectDenaliWolves

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26. Not just about numbers,loss of family group integrity & unique behaviors due 2 “take” east of Denali has been dramatic #ProtectDenaliWolves

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27. There is clear need for a permanent buffer to sustain and grow the Denali wildlife viewing economy. Essential4Tourism #ProtectDenaliWolves

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28. A no-take buffer northeast of the park is the only way to rebuild and then sustain Denali’s wolf populations #ProtectDenaliWolves

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29. Financial estimates show Denali tourism contributes over a $140 million a year to Alaska’s economy. #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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30. PLS @AKGovBillWalker reinstate the emergency closure so officials can negotiate a permanent conservation easement #ProtectDenaliWolves

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31. Please call @AKGovBillWalker (907) 465-3500 ask that he #ProtectDenaliWolves from hunting/trapping by reinstating emergency closure.

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32. Please email @AKGovBillWalker: governor@gov.state.ak.us  ask that he #ProtectDenaliWolves for future generations.

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33. Please email Sam Cotten Commissioner, Alaska Department of Fish & Game: sam.cotten@alaska.gov Tell him to #ProtectDenaliWolves

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34. Please email Don Striker, Denali National Park Superintendent: don_striker@nps.gov Tell him to #ProtectDenaliWolves

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35. The dissolution of Denali’s protective buffer zone has caused radical decline of the park’s most visible wolves #ProtectDenaliWolves

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36. The acute, ethically questionable, actions of a few local trappers has also caused radical decline of the park’s wolves #SaveDenaliWolves

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37. These trappers position their snares along the park boundary, killing not only adult wolves, but pups! #ProtectDenaliWolves

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38. In 2012  a local trapper hitched a dead horse to his four-wheeler, dragged it to the park boundary to bait wolves… #ProtectDenaliWolves

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38/2. The trapper used the dead horse 2 lure & snare the pregnant alpha female of the park’s wolf group, Grant Creek #ProtectDenaliWolves

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38/3. The trapping of that pregnant alpha female wolf of Grant Creek group led 2 the group declining frm 15 wolves to only 3 #ProtectDenaliWolves

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39. Trapping on park borders & “predator-control” R cause 4 declining wolf populations~Denali Park biologist Tom Meier #ProtectDenaliWolves

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40. Holleman, author Among Wolves, made 6 attempts 2 have protective buffer zone reinstated via petitioning Board of Game #ProtectDenaliWolves

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41. Several wolf advocacy groups joined Holleman in attempts 2 have buffer zone reinstated via petitioning Board of Game #ProtectDenaliWolves

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42. Alaska Board of Game not only refused 2 reinstate the buffer zone, but created a “moratorium” on discussing it! #ProtectDenaliWolves

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43. Unlike most national parks, hunting and trapping is allowed on many Alaskan national parks preserves #ProtectDenaliWolves

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44. .@AKGovBillWalker & AF&G : ensure viability of park wildlife/wolf pop. by facilitating easement purchase by @interior #ProtectDenaliWolves

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45. Decrease in wolf sightings since protection area repeal/2010 has all but extinguished chances tourists will C wolves #ProtectDenaliWolves

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46. Wolf-viewing success has reached rock bottom at a cost to the local and state tourism economy! #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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47. An easement purchase, could help curb the wolf decline and maintain tourism  @AKGovBillWalker #ProtectDenaliWolves

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48. Alaska’s duty is 2 conserve scenery & wildlife therein, unimpaired 4 public & future generations @AKGovBillWalker #ProtectDenaliWolves

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49. No-take easement preventing take of wolves/park animals would mitigate threat of future wolf decline in/around Denali #ProtectDenaliWolves

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50. A solution is urgently needed 2 protect 1 of the last intact functioning ecosystems in the country #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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51. Alaska must protect ecosystem in Denali National Park, an easement would help achieve this @AKGovBillWalker #ProtectDenaliWolves

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52. The eyes of the nation & broader conservation community are on #Alaska @AKGovBillWalker reinstate emergency buffer #ProtectDenaliWolves

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53. 300,000+ people from all 50 states & over 100 countries signed a petition calling for Alaska 2 #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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54. 300,000+ people from all 50 states & over 100 countries have signed a petition calling for Alaska 2 #ProtectDenaliWolves @interior

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55. #ProtectDenaliWolves Scientific research proves that if trapping/hunting kills a significant breeding individual, it can disrupt entire pack

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55/2. The “breeder loss effect” is a critical dynamic driving population decline in Denali National Park. #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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55/3. 2015Denali wolf monitoring report: We found that breeder loss preceded/coincided w/most cases of wolf pack dissolution #ProtectDenaliWolves

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56. Alaskans value the opportunity 2 view & study wolves in a relatively undisturbed predator-prey system #ProtectDenaliWolves @USFWSAlaska

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57. Alaskans value the opportunity 2 view & study wolves in a relatively undisturbed predator-prey system #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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58. Many Alaskans value and want to retain true conservation in Denali National Park #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker @USFWSAlaska

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59. It is the wish of many Alaskans that the Board of Game support the desires of Alaskans & protect the wolves/wildlife. #ProtectDenaliWolves

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60. For many Alaskans this is about conserving a certain collection of wolves that den inside the park. #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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61. There are known groupings of wolves that historically use Denali 4 denning attracting visitors from around the world #ProtectDenaliWolves

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62. Changes in bear hunting regulations had the unforeseen effect of bringing more hunters into the field. #ProtectDenaliWolves

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63. Spring bear baiting season occurs when wolf hunting season is still open exacerbating wolf pop. decline. #ProtectDenaliWolves @USFWSAlaska

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64. Last year #wolves visited bear bait stations, just outside Denali, & 2 East Fork pack wolves were killed #ProtectDenaliWolves

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64b. The loss of the pregnant female wolf in 2015 led to the disintegration of entire E. Fork group @AKGovBillWalker #ProtectDenaliWolves

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64c. #ProtectDenaliWolves Now, with one of the two remaining East Fork wolves of Denali National Park shot…@AKGovBillWalker

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64d.  This leaves 1 lone survivor, who may be a pregnant female, a miracle if her &pups survive! SHAME! @AKGovBillWalker #ProtectDenaliWolves

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65. This situation is critical! The East Fork den is close 2 the park boundary & bait stations! Buffer & #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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66. East Fork wolves have the potential 2B most viewed by park visitors, through placement of their den. #ProtectDenaliWolves @AKGovBillWalker

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67. Declines in the pop. of wolves who den/raise pups in Denali have caused concern in local community @AKGovBillWalker 

#ProtectDenaliWolves

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68. Emergency closure or hunting season (Aug.10-May 31), 10 WOLF TAKE, will continue adjacent 2 boundary of  park. #ProtectDenaliWolves

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69. Denali wolf population declined from 143 in 2007 to under 48 in 2016. Reinstate emergency buffer zone #ProtectDenaliWolves @newsminer @AP

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70. Denali wolf pop. declined frm 143 in 2007 to possibly below 48 in 2016. Reinstate emergency buffer zone #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @WSJ

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71. Denali wolf pop. declined frm 143 in 2007 2 possibly under 48~2016. Reinstate emergency buffer zone #ProtectDenaliWolves @Alaska @adndotcom

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72. East Fork #wolf population has declined to just ONE in 2016. Reinstate emergency buffer zone #ProtectDenaliWolves @latimes @NPR

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73. Denali #wolf numbers hit new low. Just ONE wolf remains in E. Fork pack  #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @newsminer @Alaska

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74. 1 lone survivor~East Fork pack who may be a pregnant female, a miracle if her &pups survive! #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @alaskapublic

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75.1 lone survivor~East Fork pack who may be a pregnant female, a miracle if her &pups survive! #ProtectDenaliWolves @WSJ @AP @NPR @latimes

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76.1 lone survivor~East Fork pack who may be a pregnant female, a miracle if her &pups survive!   #ProtectDenaliWolves @USFWSAlaska @adndotcom

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77. Reinstate emergency closure 2 ban wolf hunting/trapping on state land adjacent to park. #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @WSJ @AP @newsminer

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78. Reinstate emergency closure 2ban wolf hunting/trapping on state land adjacent to park #ProtectDenaliWolves @USFWSAlaska @latimes @adndotcom

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79. #ProtectDenaliWolves Shame on Alaska Board of Game 4 rejecting petitions 2 re-establish wolf hunting/trapping buffer around Denali @nytimes

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80. #ProtectDenaliWolves Shame on Alaska Board of Game 4 rejecting petitions 2 re-establish wolf hunting/trapping buffer around Denali @AP @NPR

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81.#ProtectDenaliWolves Shame on Alaska Board of Game 4 rejecting petitions 2 re-establish wolf hunting/trapping buffer around Denali @latimes

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82. #Wolf hunting is August 10 thru May 31 in/around Denali National Park, despite record low wolf pop. @nytimes @AP #ProtectDenaliWolves

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83. #Wolf hunting is August 10 thru May 31 in/around Denali National Park, despite record low wolf pop @WSJ @latimes #ProtectDenaliWolves

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84. Wolf hunting is August 10 thru May 31 in/around Denali National Park, despite record low wolf pop @NPR @Alaska #ProtectDenaliWolves

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85. Wolf hunting season opens Aug. 10 in/around Denali National Park, with pups barely 4 mos. old. Horrific! #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @AP

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86. Wolf hunting season opens Aug. 10 in/around Denali National Park, with pups barely 4 mos. old. Horrific! #ProtectDenaliWolves @WSJ @latimes

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87. Wolf hunting season opens Aug. 10 in/around Denali National Park, with pups barely 4 mos. old. Horrific! #ProtectDenaliWolves @NPR @USFWS

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88. For 5 yrs. now, there has been a notable decline in the number of wolf sightings in Denali Park/Preserve #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @AP

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89. For 5 yrs. now, there has been a notable decline in the number of wolf sightings in Denali Park/Preserve #ProtectDenaliWolves @latimes @WSJ

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90. For 5 yrs. now, there has been notable decline in the number of wolf sightings in Denali Park/Preserve #ProtectDenaliWolves @NPR @newsminer

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91. For 5 yrs. now, there has been notable decline in the number of wolf sightings in Denali Park/Preserve #ProtectDenaliWolves @USFWS @Alaska

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92. New report from the NPS suggests that wolf hunting could B2 blame 4 population decline. @nytimes @WSJ @AP @NPR @Alaska #ProtectDenaliWolves

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93. New report from the NPS suggests that wolf hunting could B2 blame 4 population decline. @latimes @newsminer @adndotcom #ProtectDenaliWolves

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94. Research indicates that wolf mortality rates in Denali have recently spiked 2 worrying levels #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @WSJ @AP @NPR

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95. Research indicates that wolf mortality rates in Denali have recently spiked 2 worrying levels #ProtectDenaliWolves @Alaska @USFWSAlaska

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96. Population of 48 wolves in 2015 is lowest estimated wolf density since monitoring began in 1986. #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @AP @NPR

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97. Population of 48 wolves in 2015 is lowest estimated wolf density since monitoring began in 1986. #ProtectDenaliWolves @latimes @WSJ @Alaska

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98. Population of 48 wolves in 2015 is lowest estimated wolf density since monitoring began in 1986. #ProtectDenaliWolves @newsminer @adndotcom

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99. .@AKGovBillWalker needs2 immediately close Denali & surrounding area 2 any further wolf killing #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @WSJ @AP @NPR

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100. .@AKGovBillWalker needs2 immediately close Denali & surrounding area 2 any further wolf killing #ProtectDenaliWolves @latimes @Alaska

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101. .@AKGovBillWalker needs2 immediately close Denali & surrounding area 2 any further wolf killing #ProtectDenaliWolves @adndotcom @newsminer

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102. The % of sightseers who actually spotted a wolf has dropped from 45% to only 6% as of last summer #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @AP @NPR

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103. The % of sightseers who actually spotted a wolf has dropped from 45%  2only 6% as of last summer #ProtectDenaliWolves @latimes @WSJ @Alaska

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104. The % of sightseers who actually spotted a wolf has dropped from 45%  2only 6% as of last summer #ProtectDenaliWolves @newsminer @adndotcom

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105. Denali visitors contribute millions of $$$ each yr 2 state economy. Denali visitors want 2C wolves  #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @AP @NPR

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106. Denali visitors contribute millions of $$$ yearly 2state economy Denali visitors want 2C wolves  #ProtectDenaliWolves @latimes @WSJ @Alaska

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107. Denali visitors add millions of $$$ each year 2state economy Denali visitors want 2C wolves  #ProtectDenaliWolves @newsminer @adndotcom

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108. .@AKGovBillWalker must reinstate emergency closure while officials negotiate perm. conservation easement #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @AP

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109. .@AKGovBillWalker must reinstate emergency closure while officials negotiate conservation easement #ProtectDenaliWolves @latimes @WSJ

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110. Wolf-viewing success has reached rock bottom at a cost to the local and state tourism economy! #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @AP @NPR

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111. Wolf-viewing success has reached rock bottom at a cost to the local and state tourism economy! #ProtectDenaliWolves @latimes @WSJ @Alaska

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112. Alaska’s duty is 2 conserve scenery/wildlife therein, unimpaired 4 public & future generations  #ProtectDenaliWolves @nytimes @AP @NPR

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113. Alaska’s duty is 2 conserve scenery/wildlife therein, unimpaired 4 public & future generations  #ProtectDenaliWolves @latimes @WSJ @Alaska

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114. The eyes of the nation & broader conservation community R on #Alaska ! Reinstate emergency measures. #ProtectDenaliWolves

@nytimes @AP @NPR

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115. The eyes of the nation & broader conservation community R on #Alaska ! Reinstate emergency measures. #ProtectDenaliWolves @latimes @WSJ

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Thankyou, everyone, for your efforts on behalf of the wolves of Denali National Park!

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