July 1st: The Season of Hell Begins for Wisconsin Wildlife

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Black bear. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

Tomorrow, July 1st,  marks the beginning of the legal animal fighting free for all known as the bear hound “training season.” Thousands of hounds and hounders will descend on our public lands from all over the country with their trucks, bait, and thousands of GPS collared hounds to torment any wildlife that gets in their way. No permit is required for any of this and there is essentially ZERO oversight. Hounds are allowed to run bears for hours on end and will inevitably get into bloody fights with wolves defending their young at rendezvous sites. For each hound killed by a wolf the hounder will receive a $2500 check from the DNR for their “loss” despite a huge number being repeat claimants running hounds in known wolf “caution areas.”

Hounding itself is a disgusting and deplorable form of legal animal fighting/harassment that is somehow not only legal but encouraged by the State of Wisconsin. Bears, wolves, and the attacking hounds will be fighting for their lives for the next four months during hound “training” and bear killing season. For the last few months and for a total of SIX MONTHS each year an estimated 4.6 MILLION GALLONS plus of stale junk food, grease, and other forms of “bait” are used to condition Wisconsin’s 30,000 bears to human food. This bait not only conditions the bears to human foods but it also provides an estimated 40 percent of an average bear’s diet in northern Wisconsin (See study linked below). This likely leads to significantly larger litters and rapidly expanding the bear population to numbers that the habitat cannot likely sustain for the long term. Wisconsin has essentially allowed the county, state, and national forests of the north to become giant bear “game farms” where pretty much anything goes. No permits are required to dump unlimited amounts of bait and no permit is required to run unlimited numbers of unleashed hounds. This is “conservation?”

The Wisconsin DNR and groups like the politically connected Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association will try to convince you that what they are doing is “conservation,” “heritage,” and “ethical.” It is none of these. The true gravity of what occurs in the northern forests each and every day would shock and horrify most citizens if they actually knew what happens. Hounds fight and die each and every day with bears, wolves, and whatever wild animal gets in their way. Some hounders will take to social media with pictures and videos showing bloody and wounded dogs while bragging about how they self treat them and refuse to go to veterinarians for proper care for their “family members.” Then when a wolf kills a hound they run to the first reporter that they see talking about how the hound that they kept chained up outside 24/7/365 next to a hollowed out 55 gallon drum as “shelter” was a dear “family member” and how “devastated” they are. Following that they will take to their social media groups and make threats to poach, “kill ’em all,” and otherwise make calls to eradicate wolves because their “great grand daddies killed them for a reason.” In their “secret” groups they will brag about all of their “disposable” dogs that they refer to as “culls” and “shit-eaters.” Culls because once they no longer serve a purpose they are killed and “shit-eaters” because they are only fed scraps and poor quality food just enough to keep them alive to serve their “purpose.” How is this any different than using so-called “bait dogs” to train killer dogs in dog fighting rings? Hint. It isn’t but because it is good old boy rural whites doing it

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This is how many of the “family members” of bear hounders are kept. Photo of bear hound shown under Fair Use for Educational Purposes. 

How is any of this behavior acceptable in 2017? Why does society allow this seedy underbelly of the hunting “community” to take over our public lands for a significant portion of the year to practice their sick “sport?” Expect to hear multiple stories in the coming days and weeks of hounders crying about losing their “family members” like the dog above while they keep raking in those nice fat $2500 taxpayer funded checks. Those will be followed by calls from disingenuous politicians and anti-wolf zealots for a return to “state management” for the wolf population. As we all know “state management” is code for near eradication and the 24/7/365 wolf hounding that comes along with it. This should enrage each and every citizen in the state of Wisconsin that pays taxes and has any semblance of decency. If there are any “ethical hunters” left they should also be enraged that the hounders have taken over as being the “voice” of hunters in Wisconsin and are giving a black eye to your community as seen across the country and world. The hounders and anti-wolf zealots love to refer to people like myself as being “antis.” If anything they are the one who are “anti-hunting” because what they participate in sure isn’t “hunting.” Is it “hunting” to feed wild animals millions of gallons of junk food for over six months? Is it “hunting” to send packs of bloodthirsty hounds to rampage through the forests on our public lands to tree, attack, and kill our wildlife? Who are the real “anti-hunters” in this state?

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Another cherished “family member” and the conditions so many are kept in. Photo used via Fair Use for Educational Purposes.

Bear Baiting Study 2016

Man That Tortured Three Coyotes With a Snowmobile in 2009 Received $5000 in 2016 for “Hound Depredations”

Coyote_portrait

Coyote photo via Wikimedia Commons

Last week I wrote about a hounder by the name of Michael Wood from Amery, Wisconsin that received $5000 from the Wisconsin DNR in 2016 for two hounds that were allegedly killed by wolves. In the post we pointed out that a subject with the same name out of Amery had a conviction on three counts of intentionally mistreating animals in 2009 out of Bayfield County.

IMG_4083

Screenshot of OPEN RECORD from the Wisconsin Court System Circuit Court Access 

Upon further research we found that the same subject was also under open charges for poaching a bear and resisting a warden in September of 2016, two months after the alleged “depredation” of his hounds.

IMG_4084

Screenshot of OPEN RECORD from the Wisconsin Court System Circuit Court Access 

Through an open records request we were able to obtain the original criminal complaint for the 2009 incident that Wood was convicted of and it is even more horrifying than we imagined.

From the criminal complaint:

Complainant is a Conservation Warden with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. She makes this complaint on information and belief from the records and reports collected and maintained in the ordinary course of business. On Friday, February 20, 2009 at approximately 4:41 p.m. Egstad was at the Bayfield DNR Office when she received a phone call concerning a snowmobiler chasing what the caller thought to be a wolf on the ice of Lake Superior on Bark Bay, west of Cornucopia in the Town of Bell, Bayfield County, Wisconsin. Egstad left the office and proceeded towards the site of the complainant. Egstad spoke by phone with Dan and Sharon Sheldon who stated that they had watched one person on an orange snowmobile chase around what they believed to be a wolf on the ice at Bark Bay and had hit the animal with his snowmobile. They observed the person pick up the animal and drive to the Bark Bay point boat landing. They stated that they had observed the snowmobiler chase the animal for 30 minutes at least and hit the animal a couple of times with the snowmobile. At approximately the same time Egstad was contacted by Mark Hanson, Bayfield Department of Natural Resources Creel Clerk who stated that he had observed a snowmobiler chasing coyotes and hitting them as well as picking them up when they were laying on the ice. Hanson stated that he had taken digital photos of the pick-up truck that the snowmobiler was driving. The plate of the vehicle came back registered to Michael J. Wood of Amery, Wisconsin, the defendant herein. Egstad had previously been advised that the truck in question was at a residence in the area. Egstad went to the location and met with Michael Wood. Egstad was advised by Wood that he had been out fishing on the ice during the day and had gotten three coyotes that were in his trailer. Egstad asked Wood how he had gotten the coyotes and Wood stated that he had shot them with his .22. Egstad observed the coyotes and believed them to be suffering from much more damage than if they had been shot with a .22. Wood denied using his snowmobiles to hit the coyotes but admitted to following them until they were tired and then shot them. Egstad observed Wood’s snowmobile and the track and belly pan had blood under the front end skis and track consistent with the animals having been run over. Egstad seized the three coyotes and subsequently had them skinned. No bullet hole was found in the carcass or skin or coyote number one, however, major trauma was located throughout the body. Coyote number two was also skinned and again evidence of severe trauma was located, however no bullet hole was observed. Coyote number three showed severe trauma throughout the body, however, trauma was also located in a restricted area near the location of one bullet hole.

Download the entire criminal complaint:

Michael Wood Criminal Complaint 2009

This person received $5000 of taxpayer money for two separate hound “depredation” incidents in 2016 despite having this type of history. Then two months after the “depredations,” Wood allegedly poached a bear and is also charged for resisting a warden. Did this stop the DNR from this year paying out the $5000 for 2016 AFTER the new charges were filed? No it did not. Once again we have not only a convicted criminal being rewarded for TWO separate incidents where his hounds were allegedly killed by wolves, but he still receives the payment from the DNR after allegedly poaching a bear and resisting a warden. This guy tortured three coyotes with a snowmobile and was convicted for it. Then he allegedly poaches a bear and resists a warden. Is it any surprise that he is also a hounder that recklessly puts his dogs in danger and gets two of them killed? That sure doesn’s surprise me.

Have we had enough yet Wisconsin? Contact your state legislators and tell them ENOUGH of this scam and ENOUGH of rewarding reckless hounders and convicted criminals for their behavior.

Find your legislators HERE

 

 

Hounder that Tormented Trapped Cats Will Not be Charged Despite Video Evidence: Welcome to Wisconsin 

The Wisconsin DNR and Marathon County Sheriff's Department says that this is in "bad taste" but not illegal. Still shared via Fair Use.

The Wisconsin DNR and Marathon County Sheriff’s Department says that this is in “bad taste” but not illegal. Still shared via Fair Use.

Back in August, I posted a story about a Wisconsin hounder videotaping his dogs tormenting cats in live traps. For the past year and a half dedicated wildlife advocates have been trying to push for legal action against the person that allowed his dogs to torment these cats and also take videos of his dogs attacking a raccoon. The Wisconsin DNR has refused to take any action despite the illegal activity being on video. Local law enforcement agencies have been playing a game of “pass the jurisdiction” among each other and also refusing to take any action despite video evidence. The claim among the local law enforcement agencies is that there was no animal cruelty violation. Apparently they believe that live trapping cats and allowing a pack of dogs to torment them is perfectly acceptable in Wisconsin and that the only “violation” is the suspect’s “training method.” Training method? Domestic cats aren’t “game” animals so how is this “training?” What exactly is this hounder “training” them for? Not that it matters because the Wisconsin DNR has also apparently refused to take any action despite video evidence of a clear violation.

Same hounder allowing his dogs to attack a raccoon. The DNR refuses to take action on this as well. Still shared via Fair Use.

Same hounder allowing his dogs to attack a raccoon. The DNR refuses to take action on this as well. Still shared via Fair Use.

Welcome to Wisconsin. Where wildlife advocates or anyone else using public land may soon be criminals for taking photos but where hounders can use their dogs to torture wildlife on video and no action will be taken. Let that sink in. Hounders and their ilk can videotape their own illegal torture of animals and the Wisconsin DNR and local law enforcement will refuse to take any action but if YOU videotape the same behavior as a wildlife advocate YOU may soon be held criminally liable. What kind of message is Wisconsin sending to the rest of the world? That you are a criminal if you monitor activity on public land for criminal behavior but you can videotape your own criminal acts and have total immunity?

I am furious and you should be as well. Wisconsin has made it so that hounders, baiters, and trappers have total immunity from state law and even the supposed “ethics” that the hunting community claim to hold dear. I make no secret about my thoughts on the modern “sportsman” and their “kill everything” mentality but how can actions like those depicted in these videos not even infuriate them? Even if they don’t care about the animals being tormented, and they likely don’t, shouldn’t they be furious that this type of behavior gives their “sport” a black eye?

I am not going to directly name the suspect here but I will post the link from where the videos came from. I suppose that I shouldn’t expect any ethical behavior from a person that calls his business Kwackem & Stackem Waterfowl LLC.

Different trapped cat being tormented by bear hounds.  Still shared under Fair Use.

Different trapped cat being tormented by bear hounds. Still shared under Fair Use.

Internet you know what to do. Please no threats nor anything illegal or you are as bad as these monsters. Please contact the Wisconsin DNR and the local law enforcement agencies and ask why charges have not been filed and how they cannot consider this a violation of animal cruelty statutes. It’s time we demand that they ENFORCE the law and hold these animal torturers accountable for their actions.

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources 

Call Center Staff Available 7 Days a Week (7 a.m.-10 p.m.)
Call Toll Free 1-888-WDNRINFo (1-888-936-7463)

Marathon County Sheriff’s Department 

500 Forest St, Wausau, WI 54403
(715) 261-1200

Wisconsin GOP Legislature Seeks to Attack Free Speech, Allow Toddlers to Hunt, and Promote Trespassing and Poaching: Just Another Week in the Bloodsport Capital of the United States

This should be ancient history. Instead this is

This activity should be ancient history like this painting. Instead this is “recreation” in Wisconsin and more important than YOUR First Amendment rights.

The poor great white hunter. They are such a persecuted entity in the state of Wisconsin. Not only can they shoot, arrow, hound, trap,bait, and kill almost any species throughout the year they also control the governorship, legislature, Natural Resources Board, courts, county boards, and apparently every other government entity, but that is apparently not enough.

As I pointed out last week there is a new extremist killing cartel shill in the legislature to take the place of the disgraced Scott Suder (R-ALEC) as the mouthpiece for the bear hounders. This week the legislative mouthpiece for the extremist killing cartels, Rep. Adam Jarchow (R-WBHA), introduced legislation to criminalize the First Amendment for those that share a different ideology and have the nerve to videotape and report on the myriad of illegal and unethical behaviors perpetrated by bear hounders and baiters on OUR public lands.

Jarchow stands with hunters? I didn't know hounders, baiters, and trappers were real

Jarchow stands with hunters? I didn’t know hounders, baiters, and trappers were real “hunters.”

Yes nothing says “family friendly” like using packs of vicious dogs to rip apart bear and other wildlife 24/7/365. Nothing says “family friendly” like depositing almost FIVE MILLION gallons of stale junk food on our public lands for SIX MONTHS in the hopes of conditioning and later executing a bear while eating. I would also like to know which “fishermen” are being “harassed?” While I am not a fan of fishing I know plenty of fishermen that sure wouldn’t want to be lumped in with hounders, baiters, and trappers.

Those “few precious days” for bear hounders start July 1st of each year and lasts until mid October. For bear baiters they have a full SIX MONTHS to deposit their stale junk food on OUR public lands. But that is never enough for extremist wildlife killers and their shills like Jarchow.

Let’s get to the real point behind this bill. The bear hounders/baiters and their mouthpiece, lobbyist Bob Welch, know that the group Wolf Patrol has shone a light onto the depraved and often illegal world of the whole hounding/baiting “culture” so this bill is another legislative attack against those with a differing ideology. One look at the terminology that Jarchow (R-WBHA) uses in his “press release” shows exactly what this is about. It also doesn’t hurt to look at those commenting on his Facebook page and the symbols that they use on their profiles. Here is an example of what is used by at least two of his fans.

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One of Rep. Jarchow's bill supporters. Screenshot shared under Fair Use.

One of Rep. Jarchow’s bill supporters. Screenshot shared under Fair Use.

This is all about wolves and the desire of the Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association (WBHA) and affiliated groups to eradicate them from our landscape. The calls of “smoke a pack a day” from these people show exactly what the ultimate goal is. While I may have small differences with the Wolf Patrol, they are doing what needs to be done. They are showing blatant illegal behavior perpetrated by hounders, baiters, and trappers while the Wisconsin DNR does NOTHING as usual. Jarchow and his buddies in the hounder/baiter groups don’t like the public seeing what their “sport” is all about and how they flaunt the breaking of laws and defile OUR public lands with their bait and legalized animal fighting.

This bill like so many others in Wisconsin is emblematic of what our state has become since 2010. Freedom of Speech only applies if you agree with the majority party currently in power and if you are a politician/supporter caught breaking the law they will just change the law to make the illegal behavior legal. Then if you are a “watchdog” that catches onto and reports the illegal behavior you will be demonized and the law will be changed just as Jarchow is trying to do here.

Jarchow makes the claim that the thought of a “hunt” being “ruined” by an “extremist group” makes him “sick.” You know what makes me sick? The disingenuous crap put forth by Jarchow and his followers that makes it seem like using PUBLIC lands and exercising our Freedom of Speech rights are something to be made illegal. While Jarchow and his benefactors in the killing cartels love to make inflammatory and untrue accusations they seem to be forgetting that it was the hounders that were harassing, blocking, and following those seeking to document what the hounders and baiters were doing as shown in this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZrNyjK7eL_M

The hounders blocking the Wolf Patrol vehicle can even be heard claiming that “they are the law.” This is not an uncommon mindset amount hounders and baiters in Wisconsin. They are pandered to by legislators like Jarchow and are essentially given free reign by the Wisconsin DNR and local law enforcement agencies to do whatever they want. They can dump MILLIONS of gallons of stale junk food as bear bait all over OUR public lands, allow their dogs to run rampant on OUR public lands, and get a $2500 check from the Wisconsin DNR each time one of those free roaming dogs gets killed by a wolf, but it’s wildlife advocates that are “extremists” and doing the “harassing?”

What Rep. Adam Jarchow (R-WBHA) is going here is criminalizing free speech and the free navigation of OUR public lands. He is writing into law that hounders, baiters, and trappers will have free rein to behave as they want on OUR public lands and the “criminal” in the matter are the ones documenting illegal behavior. Remember that most of the hounding and baiting occurs on OUR National Forest land and this smacks of nothing more than a takeover of these lands by the extremist “hunting” elements in our state. It is also another example of trying to criminalize free speech and those that have a differing ideology from the right-wing extremists that currently run our state. Jarchow is a wealthy lawyer and should at least have some understanding of the United States Constitution and American law, but his false premise of a “right to hunt” taking presence over free speech and free passage on OUR public lands is highly disturbing. Not surprising considering the power drunk cabal that he is a part of at the state Capitol, but still disturbing.

Jarchow, in his “press release” makes the claim that hunting is a “family friendly” activity and it is somehow the “job” of government and elected representatives to get kids outside and killing’ instead of staying “indoors watching TV or surfing the internet.” Not coincidentally there are two more disturbing and likely related proposals that have been introduced in the Wisconsin Legislature.

The first proposal spearheaded by Wisconsin Representative and convicted wildlife violator, Joel Kleefisch, would remove the age limit for hunting in Wisconsin for “mentored hunting” along with any limitation on the number and types of weapons that can be used.

SB 301

An Act to repeal 29.592 (3); and to amend 29.592 (1) (intro.) of the statutes;
relating to: eliminating age requirements for participating in the hunting
mentorship program and hunting devices authorized to be used under the
hunting mentorship program.

Want to take your infant or toddler out and let them hound, trap, arrow, bait, or shoot wildlife? This proposal would allow that. Is it a coincidence that Jarchow mentioned how horrible it was for youth to watch TV and use the internet when there is all that good killin’ to be done?

The next proposal, also championed by convicted wildlife violator, Rep. Joel Kleefisch, seeks to remove the current decades old requirement that hunters wear backtags for identification and to help prevent trespassing.

Under current law, when the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) issues
a person an archer hunting license, a deer hunting license, a bear hunting license,
an elk hunting license, a sports license, or a conservation patron license, DNR also
issues a back tag to be attached to the person’s outermost garment when that person
is hunting as authorized by the license. This bill eliminates the requirement that
DNR issue a back tag with any of these licenses and the requirement that the licensee
attach a back tag to any garment while hunting.

This proposal should be renamed the 2015 Poaching and Trespassing Protection and Enablement Act. What benefit is there to the general public for the backtag requirement to be removed other than to protect those breaking the law? Just like Jarchow’s attack on the First Amendment it seems that the whole goal is to provide complete cover for those that want to poach, trespass, and otherwise violate the law. What other explanation is there? The answer is easy enough to find by checking to see which “hunter” groups support these proposals.

For the backtag removal bill these are the groups lobbying in support:

2015-2016 Legislative Session
Senate Bill 289
Relating to: back tag requirements. (FE)
1
National Rifle Association of America
For For
Notified Date: 10/13/2015
2
Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association
For For
Notified Date: 10/8/2015
3
Wisconsin FORCE (Wisconsin Firearm Owners, Ranges, Clubs, & Educators, Inc.)
For For
Notified Date: 10/8/2015

For the removal of age limits for the “hunter mentorship” program:

2015-2016 Legislative Session
Senate Bill 301
Relating to: eliminating age requirements for participating in the hunting mentorship program and hunting devices authorized to be used under the hunting mentorship program.
1
National Rifle Association of America
For For
Notified Date: 10/13/2015
2
Whitetails of Wisconsin
For For
Notified Date: 10/12/2015
3
Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association
For For
Notified Date: 10/12/2015
4
Wisconsin FORCE (Wisconsin Firearm Owners, Ranges, Clubs, & Educators, Inc.)
For For
Notified Date: 10/12/2015

What do all of these groups have in common? All but the NRA have the same lobbyist. That lobbyist is none other than Bob Welch, he of the windtunnel tested hair and hatred of wolves. The one group listed as in favor of eliminating the age restriction that he lobbies for, “Whitetails of Wisconsin,” is a lobbying group for canned hunting operations in the state. I guess allowing toddlers to shoot and kill hand raised animals behind fences must be good for business.

It’s the same names and same nefarious agendas at play here as those seeking to eradicate our wolf population. In what world does it make sense to criminalize free speech and then work to protect poachers and trespassers from being identified?

Please let Rep. Jarchow know what you think about his attempt to criminalize free speech here:

(608) 267-2365

Rep.Jarchow@legis.wi.gov

http://legis.wisconsin.gov/assembly/28/jarchow/contact-me/

Then contact YOUR state representatives and speak out against all of these insane proposals:

Find Your Legislator 

The ONLY positive to be taken from these proposals is that the hounders/baiters are scared that their sadistic behavior and “culture” of legalized animal fighting and unethical practices are being exposed to the light. Those that participate in and benefit from the killing culture of this state are also in a panic because more and more people are turning away from bloodsports or not participating in them starting in their youth. This means less and less funding for agencies like the Wisconsin DNR that exist solely for the benefit of those that kill, torment, and exploit our “natural resources.” Much like the deplorable “ag-gag” bills across the country Jarchow’s attack on free speech and navigation of OUR public lands will get its day in court. Glass houses……stones………

**UPDATE**

It turns out that according to the legislative website of Rep. Adam Jarchow, he is a member of the Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association, National Rifle Association, and the Polk County Sportsmen’s Club. No conflict of interest here is there?

Biography
Born St. Paul, Minn., November 10, 1978; married; 2 children. Graduate Clear Lake H.S. 1997; B.S. finance U. of South Florida 2001; J.D. U. of Florida 2004. Attorney. Member: Polk Co. Economic Development Corporation (secy.); National Rifle Assn.; Polk Co. Sportsmen’s Club; Wis. Bear Hunters Assn.; Apple River Fire Dept.
Elected to Assembly 2014.

Killing Giggles the Fawn and the Double Standard of How Blatant Wildlife Violations by Hounders and Trappers are Ignored

It all came to a head on July 15, 2013. After weeks of aerial and ground surveillance, diligent investigation, and the approval of a search warrant, the fugitive was cornered and the courageous and heavily armed deputies of the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources were ready strike and apprehend the dangerous suspect and send a message to those harboring her. When the time came the 16 officers executed the SWAT style raid with perfection, apprehended the suspect, and summarily executed her for the safety of the entire state and humanity itself.

Here is what the violent suspect, that needed 16 heavily armed officers to apprehend, looked like prior to her execution.

Giggles the fawn. Killed by the DNR on July 15, 2013.

Giggles the fawn. Killed by the DNR on July 15, 2013.

This innocent little baby was killed by the Wisconsin DNR because some kindhearted people at the Society of St. Francis Animal Shelter took the fawn, affectionately known as Giggles, in prior to attempting to place her with a wildlife rehabber in Illinois. Giggles was brought to the shelter by some well meaning but misinformed people that believed she was orphaned. Because Wisconsin law forbids wild animals, such as deer from being kept, the DNR and local law enforcement apparently felt that a SWAT style raid was necessary to resolve the situation. This is what the talking heads at the Wisconsin DNR said after the raid and execution of Giggles: 

“Last week our warden staff had the difficult and emotional job of removing a fawn that was illegally taken out of the wild and into captivity. None of our staff take joy in these situations. The department does the best it can to educate the public about keeping wild animals in the wild. In the end, we are charged by the citizens of Wisconsin to carry out state laws mandated by the legislature. It is a responsibility we take very seriously. We don’t have the ability to pick and choose which laws to enforce. Wardens did request voluntary compliance from the facility. When that didn’t happen, our staff took precautions to keep everyone safe as they executed the required search warrant. We are always very empathetic to those involved in these situations and understand how difficult they are to all who are involved.”

Thank the “heavens” that we have a diligent and courageous DNR and local law enforcement to keep us safe from the scourge of baby deer and workers at animal shelters. Of course there is one little thing that the DNR conveniently “forgot” to mention. They didn’t mention the fact that a certain segment of people in the state are allowed to keep wild animals. Those wild animals aren’t “kept in the wild” but it is perfectly legal for this segment of people to “posses” them and use them to “train” their dogs on. Of course I am talking about none other than our glorious hounders and how they can keep wild animals to torment. This is what the Wisconsin statutes state:

169.20(2)(b) (b) A hound dog training license authorizes the holder of the license to purchase, possess, release into the wild, and hunt any of the following wild animals for the purpose of teaching hound dogs to track game:

169.20(2)(b)1. 1. Live captive rabbit purchased or otherwise acquired from a person holding a captive wild animal farm license.
169.20(2)(b)2. 2. Live captive raccoon.
169.20(2)(b)3. 3. Live captive bear of the species Ursus americanus.
169.20(2)(b)4. 4. Live captive fox.
169.20(2)(b)5. 5. Live captive coyote.
169.20(2)(b)6. 6. Live captive bobcat

The statute states that these animals can be kept for the purpose of teaching hound dogs to TRACK “game.” Nowhere does it say that the hounder doing the “teaching” can allow the dog can attack or kill the “game.” Only TRACKING is allowed. So why then does the Wisconsin DNR refuse to enforce the law when it comes to blatant violations where photographic and video evidence is provided showing illegal activity?

This weekend I am sure many of you read with outrage my post about the hounder videotaping his dogs tormenting two live trapped cats. I also presented another video made by the same person where he was encouraging his dogs to attack a raccoon. In both instances the hounder escaped any and all repercussions for his illegal behavior because both the Portage County Sheriff’s Department and the Wisconsin DNR refused to take any action.

Wisconsin bear hounder allowing his dogs to torment trapped cat.

Wisconsin bear hounder allowing his dogs to torment trapped cat.

Wisconsin hounder in action. Photo shared under Fair Use.

Wisconsin hounder in action. Photo shared under Fair Use.

As disturbing as these videos are there have been far more even more horrifying ones presented to the authorities followed by more refusals to take action. In 2013 a wolf killer trapped a wolf near Portage Wisconsin and allowed the wolf to languish in the trap for at least a week. Wisconsin trapping rules state that traps must be checked every 24 hours. What did the DNR do after numerous complaints were filed about this incident? They warned the wolf killer and the land owner not to do it again. No charges. No fine. Nothing but a “warning.”

illegal-wolf-trapping

Of course total inaction and apathy toward cruelty toward wildlife is not exclusive to Wisconsin agencies. Earlier this summer I was forwarded a video made by a Minnesota based hounder showing his dogs being allowed to viciously attack a coyote at what the hounder described as a Minnesota based “penning” facility. After contacting the Minnesota DNR we were told that such penning facilities are not legal in Minnesota and that the video may constitute a serious violation.

MN Hounder

Full video here:  https://youtu.be/TkjgYTb526k

This is the email interaction between a MN DNR warden and one of the reporting parties.

I have a couple of questions about Minnesota law before I report a possible violation. First, is the penning of coyotes and other wildlife legal in Minnesota for the purpose of “training” dogs? Second if it is legal are the dogs allowed to physically attack and kill the coyotes and other wildlife within these “pens?”

From the MN DNR:

The answer is no for both of your questions. There is an exception for your first questions – animals that are bought legally from a game farm can be penned and used for training dogs as long as it’s done in a humane way. Some people train their coon dogs by pulling a cage (with a raccoon in it) through the woods and fields to lay down a scent for the dog but the dogs are not actively chasing the raccoon. The big difference is where did the animals come from – the wild or a game farm. I don’t know any game farms in MN that exclusively sell coyotes – most sell game birds and a few other critters.

Major Greg Salo
Operations Manager
MN DNR Enforcement
651-259-5045
Gregory.salo@state.mn.us

In the social media comments forwarded to us with the video the hounder bragged that this “training” was occurring at a penning facility “near Brainerd.” This information was provided to the MN DNR along with the video by the complainant. For once we thought that finally action may be taken against a hounder for illegal activity. But as usual we were mistaken. Despite the video and the comments from the hounder that recorded it the MN DNR some how came to the conclusion that this occurred in Wisconsin rather than Minnesota. This was the response from the MN DNR:

We looked into this case and believe this activity is occurring just across the border in Wisconsin where it is legal to use a pen to train dogs for coyotes. We are wrapping up a few more details and I’ll let you know if something else develops.

Of course nothing more “developed” and this blatant violation was also ignored with no repercussions for the perpetrator. The inaction from the Wisconsin DNR, Minnesota DNR, and local law enforcement agencies to blatant cruelty is highly disturbing and it makes me wonder what it actually takes for them to take any sort action. Apparently photos, videos, and the words directly from the violators are not enough for any action to occur concerning blatant cruelty and law violations. The investigating agencies always have some sort of excuse as to why charges are never filed or citations are never issued.

Apparently you have to be an animal shelter volunteer harboring a viscous baby deer for local law enforcement or the DNR to take a violation seriously. In that case they will send a 16 member SWAT style team to take you and the baby down. So is the sad state of affairs for wildlife advocates in Wisconsin and the rest of the country.

Wisconsin Hounder Uses His Hounds to Torment Trapped Cats… Wisconsin Law Enforcement Refuses to Take Any Action

***Apparently people are not taking the time to read the entire post. This WAS REPORTED almost a year ago and the named “authorities” REFUSED to take any action. We are only asking people to contact these agencies and ask them WHY no charges should have been filed NOT to report the violation. The suspect is not being named here because these agencies ALREADY KNOW who the person is.***

Very little that wildlife advocates see on a daily basis is ever positive or warms the heart. Those deeply involved in exposing the cruelty that is allowed and even encouraged in Wisconsin see horrific videos and images each and every day. While I like to pretend that “nothing” shocks or horrifies me anymore, I would be lying. Each and every sick snuff video or picture that I see pierces me right to my core. I don’t share every video or picture that I see because it would just be overwhelming for those of us that care about wildlife, but every once an a while a video or picture is so shocking that it needs to be exposed.

For the past year concerned wildlife advocates have been sitting on videos made by an individual residing in Portage County, Wisconsin in the hopes that the Portage County Sheriff’s Department or the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources would take some type of action against the perpetrator. To this date they have refused to take any action.

What follows below are screen shots of these videos along with links to the videos themselves.

Wisconsin bear hounder allowing his dogs to torment trapped cat.

Wisconsin hounder allowing his dogs to torment trapped cat. Photo and video shared under Fair Use.

The full video can be seen on our YouTube page here:

https://youtu.be/q430Kx6EXVg

If you think the above video is bad the same perpetrator is not done tormenting cats and other wildlife. Here is a second screen shot followed by the link to the full video showing the dogs tormenting a second cat.

Different trapped cat being tormented by bear hounds.

Different trapped cat being tormented by hounds. Screenshot and video shared under Fair Use.

The full video can be seen below:

https://youtu.be/AMbM3THPPII

What we are seeing in these videos is the total disregard for the law and animal welfare in general. Bear hounders like to pretend that they are “ethical” and follow all of the laws. Frankly from the evidence I have seen that couldn’t be further from the truth and as these videos show their “community” is full of people that derive pleasure from tormenting other animals. Here are the Wisconsin statutes being violated by this individual that the Portage County Sheriff’s Department and Wisconsin DNR refuse to enforce:

Chapter 951: Crimes Against Animals
http://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/statutes/statutes/951

951.02  Mistreating animals. No person may treat any animal, whether belonging to the person or another, in a cruel manner. This section does not prohibit normal and accepted veterinary practices.

(2) ”Cruel” means causing unnecessary and excessive pain or SUFFERING or unjustifiable injury or death.

(2) Hound dog training license.
169.20(2)(a)(a) The department shall issue a hound dog training license to any individual who is at least 10 years of age who files a proper application and pays the applicable fee. If the department issues a hound dog training license to an individual who is under 12 years of age, the individual is subject to the restrictions specified under s. 29.592.
169.20(2)(b) (b) A hound dog training license authorizes the holder of the license to purchase, possess, release into the wild, and hunt any of the following wild animals for the purpose of teaching hound dogs to track game:

**this list doesn’t include domestic cats***

169.20(2)(b)1. 1. Live captive rabbit purchased or otherwise acquired from a person holding a captive wild animal farm license.
169.20(2)(b)2. 2. Live captive raccoon.
169.20(2)(b)3. 3. Live captive bear of the species Ursus americanus.
169.20(2)(b)4. 4. Live captive fox.
169.20(2)(b)5. 5. Live captive coyote.
169.20(2)(b)6. 6. Live captive bobcat

The response from the DNR and local law enforcement doesn’t surprise me. Animal cruelty violations are almost never prosecuted and in the case of hounders the key word is NEVER.

Here is another example of the type of people that we are dealing with here and how they operate. They proudly post photos and videos like the one below to social media sites:

Wisconsin hounder in action. Photo shared under Fair Use.

Wisconsin hounder in action. Photo shared under Fair Use.

Video of above hounds attacking the raccoon is below.

https://youtu.be/N0y-bz5OBrk

Once again the Wisconsin DNR refused to take any action because the video “didn’t show the animal being killed by the dogs.”

Outraged yet? This kind of behavior occurs daily in the bloodsport capital of the United States also known as Wisconsin. The “authorities” give people like those above free reign to do whatever they wish to animals and the hounders know it. They are even brazen enough to record their illegal activity and share it for the world to see.

For those questioning as to whether or not this has been reported here is how the Wisconsin DNR and Portage County Sheriff’s Department blew off the original complaint. The suspect’s name and original complainant has been removed from the email.

From: “Lockman, Bryan R – DNR” <Bryan.Lockman@wisconsin.gov>

A Detective from the Portage County Sheriff’s Department took a look at those videos and state that because no animal was technically harmed there wouldn’t be anything they could pursue for charges.

We are committed to service excellence.
Visit our survey at http://dnr.wi.gov/customersurvey to evaluate how I did.

Bryan Lockman
Phone: (715) 344-3694
bryan.lockman@wisconsin.gov

Then we have the same DNR employee responding to the video of the raccoon being attacked by hounds:

From: “Lockman, Bryan R – DNR” <Bryan.Lockman@wisconsin.gov>

The only legal way to harvest a raccoon is by firearm, airgun, bow and arrow, crossbow or trapping. If he allowed the dogs to kill the coon then he would have harvested it with an illegal method. Going by what the video showed it wasn’t killed, so it wouldn’t violate that statute.

We are committed to service excellence.
Visit our survey at http://dnr.wi.gov/customersurvey to evaluate how I did.

Bryan Lockman
Phone: (715) 344-3694
bryan.lockman@wisconsin.gov

There you have it. Wisconsin doesn’t care if you torture cats with your dogs because they weren’t “harmed.” Wisconsin also doesn’t care if you let your hounds physically attack wildlife and video tape it because the animal wasn’t shown being killed. How’s that for being “committed to excellent service?”

At this time I am not naming the perpetrator of the above illegal activity. The Portage County Sheriff’s Department and Wisconsin DNR should hear from all of you as to why no charges have been forwarded for prosecution regarding these incidents. Let them know what you think about their refusal to enforce the laws:

Portage County Sheriff’s Department 

sheriff@co.portage.wi.us

Please DO NOT call their dispatch centers and tie up their emergency lines. Email would be preferable right now.

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources: 

Wisconsin DNR Email Link

Trophy Killing Apologists Scrambling to Justify their Behavior and it Isn’t Working

"Cecil the Lion" by Source (WP:NFCC#4). Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Cecil_the_Lion.jpg#/media/File:Cecil_the_Lion.jpg

“Cecil the Lion” by Source (WP:NFCC#4). Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Cecil_the_Lion.jpg#/media/File:Cecil_the_Lion.jpg

As expected following the news the last few days about the illegal killing of Cecil the Lion in Zimbabwe by an American dentist, the killing cartels and their apologists have taken to various media outlets to defend their “sport” and continue to foster the lie that it has something to do with real “conservation.”

One of the most absurd one that I read today came from a frequent apologist for wildlife killers, Rocky Barker of the Idaho Statesman. Barker talks about how the killing of Cecil was a “stupid act” but then goes on to espouse the “benefits” of trophy killing.

People who universally condemn hunters because of Palmer’s act don’t understand the critical role hunters play in conservation. The Safari Club, which promotes trophy hunting and conservation, suspended Palmer’s membership Wednesday, along with that of the guide.

The lottery held by the Bighorn Sheep Foundation and the Idaho Department of Fish and Game on Wednesday raised $62,000 for wildlife research. An Alabama hunter was the winner out of 5,855 $20 tickets for the chance at a bighorn sheep, a once-in-a-lifetime hunt.

Another hunter paid $100,000 to the national Wild Sheep Foundation at its banquet in Reno for an Idaho tag, which also benefits conservation. And another $100,000 was raised this year at the Idaho chapter’s banquet.

As usual the old “killing is conservation” argument is being used here. Us “anti’s” just “don’t understand.” You are right Mr. Barker, I DON’T UNDERSTAND. I don’t understand how someone can pay money to fly across the world to kill an animal. I don’t understand how one derives pleasure from taking the life of another being for pleasure. Trophy “hunters” like to pretend that they “care” about wildlife and their habitat. The fallacy in that argument is that if they are willing to spend tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars for “conservation,” why do they need the payoff of a kill? “Once in a lifetime hunt” indeed because for the bighorn sheep it is their LIFE being taken in the process. The “killing for conservation” argument continues in the article:

Hunters are among the most active conservationists I have covered over the past 30 years in Idaho. They were on the front lines of the fight for protection of the Owyhee Canyonlands and are among the small group of sportsmen I see annual lobbying of the Idaho Legislature in support of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game and habitat protection.

Ah yes, those “sportsmen” and their lobbying of IDFG. What exactly have they been “lobbying” for? How about one “sportsmen’s” group “lobbying and paying for trying to eradicate wolves from that state? From 2012:

Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation leaders want state wildlife officials to get more aggressive about wolf control, and they’ve offered at least $50,000 to make it happen.

“We are not utilizing anywhere near to the fullest of what the wolf management plan authorizes,” RMEF president David Allen said on Monday. “The go-slow, take-it-easy approach is not working.”

The Missoula-based group wants Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks to use the money to contract with the federal Wildlife Services agency to kill more wolves.

Is that the kind of “lobbying” for “conservation” that Mr. Barker is referring to? But no pro-killing article would be complete without the narrative of how the “great white hunter” has to come in with his or her big $$$$ and “save” the natives so they can build “clinics and soccer fields.” 

Big game hunters would pay tens of thousands of dollars to kill trophy animals. That provided an incentive for the village to protect the animals that otherwise were seen as threats. The village would spend some of the proceeds to hire guards to protect game against poachers, and the rest went for everything from wells to soccer fields to doctor’s clinics.

Yeah, I guess why that explains the massive increase in poaching and how many African species have been pushed to the brink of extinction in the past decade. Right Mr. Barker? I suppose like the NRA’s argument of “more guns” to solve the mass shooting problem, I can imagine the killing cartels and their apologists screaming that more killing is needed for “conservation.” No better analogy exists for this ridiculous argument than this one:

Killing for conservation is the same as screwing for virginity. 

I believe that says it all.

Throughout the furor over Cecil’s killing internet trolls and killing cartel apologists have been using the same tired line against those outraged over what occurred. They ask why we “care” more for a lion than we do for other humans? This is how I explained it to a typical apologist troll on Facebook this morning:

“Funny how there are so many people out there whining that “you care more about that lion than people.” Yeah I do. Cecil never cut me off in traffic. Cecil never hurled bigoted or racist comments to anyone. Cecil didn’t drive through my neighborhood at 3 am booming his car stereo. Cecil killed to eat and not for a trophy. Cecil didn’t use packs of dogs against helpless wildlife. Cecil didn’t start needless wars leading to hundreds of thousands of dead and maimed. Cecil didn’t wage war on the poor. Cecil didn’t try to cut the rights of workers. So yeah, I do care about Cecil more than most humans and I don’t care if that offends you or anyone else.”

I didn’t get a response. Shock.

There is no justification for trophy killing no matter how much blood money it brings in. If those that partake in such activities really “care” about “conservation” as they claim let’s see them cut a check for $50,000 or $100,000 without the bloody payoff. It ain’t happening.

Here are some other obscene “killing is conservation” articles showing up in the media:

Why killing lions like Cecil is actually good for conservation

Big Game Trophy Hunters Defend Their Passion

Other View: Those trophy hunters pay for game reserves

There are plenty more apologist fluff pieces out there if these haven’t infuriated you enough.