Recommended: “Beyond Words, What Elephants and Whales Think and Feel”

Check out Carl Safina’s new book. “Beyond Words, What Elephants and Whales Think and Feel”. This adaption of Safina’s 2015 award winning “Beyond Words, What Animals Think and Feel” is aimed at children from ages 10 to 16.

 

In the original book Safina offers an intimate personal accounting of experiences with wild animals that challenge the fixed boundary between human and non human animals. Safina, a celebrated marine scientist, challenges reader to recalculate how we interact with animals through stories of joy, grief, jealousy and love. The story has adapted to offer these experiences and perspectives to an audience of young readers. This new release (the first of a two-part series) has quickly risen to become Amazon’s #1 top seller in Children Zoology.

 

Works such as these could be the key to creating a new generation of wildlife advocates, and we at AFW highly recommend reading Safina’s new work, or gifting it to a child or young adult in your life.

 

Check out the new book HERE.

Recommended: “The Hidden Life of Wolves”

Jim K, a member of AFW’s steering committee highly recommends National Geographic’s book “The Hidden Life of Wolves” by filmmakers Jim and Jamie Dutcher with forward by Robert Redford.
 
The Dutcher’s project took them into the Sawtooth Mountains of Idaho, where they lived or six years near a wolf family year round. They observed and photographed the intimate lives and behavior of the wolves, including their grief at the death of a pack mate, exuberant play and friendships, excitement over birth of pups, shared role of raising pups and teaching the needed skills to survive.
The book is filled with intimate portraits of all manner of rarely seen social action and activities. The photographs are revealing, touching and intimate.
 
The experience has led to three documentary films and three Emmy Awards and the founding of the non profit: Living With Wolves.
 

Gustavus Wolves and Sea Otters

While most wolves prefer moose, deers, and mountain goats, the Gustavus pack in northern Southeast Alaska has developed a taste for sea otters, most likely due to a a rapid growth in the population in the Glacier Bay National Park.

It’s not certain how the wolves are killing the sea otters. Otters are known to come ashore during inclement weather, and it’s possible that the wolves are hunting them them then. Research also suggests that the sea otter population in Glacier Bay has reached “carrying capacity” (the point at which a habitat can no longer support the number of animals living there without damage to the habitat or animals). If this is the case, wolves could be scavenging dead animals that wash up onshore or going after weakened otters.

Check out the full story from the:

News Miner

Logging Lawsuit in Tongass National Forest Invalidated

A federal appeals court just invalidated four U.S. Forest Service logging projects in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest. Congratulations to Larry Edwards, Greenpeace, and all involved in the successful lawsuit!
 
The Tongass National Forest is not only the country’s largest national forest, but also the world’s largest remaining temperate rainforest. The four projects were slated to clear cut 33 million board feet of timber from a 1,700 acre section of old-growth in the National Forest. About 14 miles of logging roads would have been constructed in order to support this logging.
 
If allowed to go through, the logging would have destroyed critical deer habit, which serves as prey for the rare Alexander Archipelago Wolf (there could be as few as 50 left!) and is vital for subsistence farmers in the area.
 
Congratulations again to Larry Edwards and all involved on this huge win for Alaska’s wildlife!
 
Check out more information at Greenpeace. https://www.greenpeace.org/usa/forests/alaska/

The McNeil River Needs Our Help!

Photo by Bob Hallinen.

With headwaters in the Aleutians, the McNeil River provides sustenance to a vast array of wildlife, most notably salmon and brown bears. It was designated as a wildlife sanctuary in 1967 to protect what is currently the world’s largest congregation of wild brown bears. As many as 144 bears have been observed at McNeil River over a summer, and in recent years as many as 80 bears been in view at a time.

 

The McNeil River State Game Sanctuary and the bears that live there need our help. The construction of Pebble Mine and its infrastructure (a deep water port and a two lane road) poses a huge threat to nearby McNeil River State Game Sanctuary and the world’s largest seasonal congregation of brown bears. In fact, the construction would be a direct violation of the mandate legislating the Game Sanctuary, which states its purpose as: “The permanent protection of brown bear and other fish and wildlife populations and their habitats for scientific, aesthetic, and educational purposes” and “To manage human use and activities in a way that is compatible with that purpose and to maintain and enhance unique bear viewing opportunities in the sanctuary”.

 

So, what can you do? Visit the McNeil River Alliance’s website below, and submit your public comment in support of the bears and wildlife of the sanctuary. Comments are due May 31, 2019!

 

https://mcneilriveralliance.org/

Aeriel Wolf Hunting is Back in Unit 13

Aerial wolf hunting is back in Unit 13 Intensive Management Area.

Alaskans for Wildlife strongly opposes the Intensive Management (IM) response by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game as a 1994 political, not scientific, legislative manuever by the Alaska Legislature to turn Alaska wildlands from their natural biological diversity into game farms, manipulating the wildlife balance by eliminating apex predators. The IM practice has killed thousands of wolves over past decades at outrageous costs, using public monies with little desired results.

Intensive Management Act must head for repeal as a political act that destroys biodiversity and brutalizes target carnivores. It has been effectively reducing naturally occurring wildland ecosystems into farms under the Alaskan Departmen of Fish and Game, which should perhaps be renamed the Alaska Department of Farming Game.

Check out the full story from Alaskas Dispatch News here.

A year and a half ago, British Columbia banned grizzly bear hunts, citing that they were no longer socially acceptable. The move was supported by First Nations people, including Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, who called grizzly hunts a “barbaric practice”.

And yet Idaho and Montana, just to the south, are pushing to reinstate bear trophy hunts…

Check out the full story at White Wolf Pack here.

Black Bear Hunts Approved in Chugach State Park

Yesterday, two proposals to allow bear hunting in two new areas of Chugach State Park were approved by the the Alaska Board of Game. The two areas are McHugh Creek and Upper Campbell Creek Drainage Area, adjacent to Powerline Pass. Board Chairman Ted Spraker claims that these hunts were proposed to reduce conflicts between bears and humans in those areas, after public concerns were supposedly raised about the proximity of bears living near Anchorage. Spraker claims that opening up bear hunts will make the hiking trails safer.

These two new hunting areas still need approval by Chugach State Park before they can be formalized, and Park Superintendent Kurt Hansel is questioning the need for more black bear hunting in the park, as well as additional safety concerns of having hunters near where the public recreates.

Check out the full story from KTVA here.

Department of Interior Announces New Plan for Gray Wolves

On March 14, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced its plan to remove federal Endangered Species Act protections from gray wolves in the lower 48.

Without federal protections, it is likely that wolf management will be turned over to state authorities. Historically, this has resulted in wolves becoming fair game for trophy hunters. Wolves are just beginning to reclaim territory after decades of unremitting slaughter that nearly brought them to extinction, and a removal of protection will greatly threaten this comeback.

Check out the article by the Wolf Conservation Center here for more information. Public comments are open until May 14, 2019!