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

 

 

Guest Blog: Northern Exposure

The_black_bear

Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

This is a guest post from another resident of Northern Wisconsin highlighting the struggles that property owners have to deal with when living in an area full of bloodthirsty hounders. The writer also writes about the endless threats and intimidation directed at those who disagree with the behavior of hounders and other predator haters.

NORTHERN EXPOSURE

As a northern Wisconsin resident, I appreciate clean air, pure water, little if any development, tranquil forests and waterways and the freedom to roam public lands with my dog any season; any time. The very reason most people live or move to northern Wisconsin. Wisconsin’s wild side is what attracts 14-million visitors to OUR state parks, forests, trails and recreation areas per year. Escape to Wisconsin. Go Wild. Well, not exactly the case and soon to regress from any “wild” due to our undermining Legislators who are rapidly dismantling OUR public lands.

Life in northern Wisconsin comes with many obstacles besides Legislators. One being the safety we are all entitled to on public lands. Hunting accidents occur all too often as many of our canine friends are shot, trapped or poisoned as well as residents who are shot on their own property due to so-called ‘hunter error’. Living in a secluded area, I have been told to stay out of harm’s way during hunting season. Apparently, it is rational for coyote hounders to run their dogs 365-days/year and bear hounders 4.5 months/year but residents cannot run their own dogs when they choose. Hunting privileges begin April 15 with bear baiting and run until the end of open bear season which is mid-October. Bear hound training begins July 1 and ends around October 6. Open bear season begins early September winding down mid-October. Basically, hunting and trapping continue for many species until spring turkey season begins. Therefore, it seems hunting and trapping take precedence most of the year regardless of tourism and resident interests even though revenue from eco-tourism is much greater than hunters who claim their contributions pay for conservation. Hunters fund conservation efforts, but it is for game animals they can hunt.

How safe are our private properties? Hunting hounds sometimes 6-at a time, trespass on my property and adjacent seasonal residents’ properties every year and often every day during open bear season and frequently during unlicensed bear training. They announce their arrival by yelping, tantalizing pets sometimes killing them, alarming home owners, trampling through gardens and disrupting any wildlife in their path. When addressing the issues with Legislators and WDNR, I am instructed to 1) call the warden, 2) call the sheriff 3) restrain the 6-cackling hounds and take them to the Humane Society. Restrain 6-bloodthirsty hounds? That’s safe. Wait 45-minutes for a sheriff? Call the warden who is on another call in a different county? For real? Trespassing on private property is a heaping fine of $25.-$100. IF caught and may escalate to $250.-$500. In 2016. Traditional hunting with hounds no longer exists. Hounders hang out by their vehicles miles away from their malicious hounds tracking them by GPS. Interestingly, residents who are left with injured or killed pets are not compensated in any way by the state. Yet, hounders who have lost their hunting hounds to wolves while bear hunting; even in dangerous designated wolf zones, are compensated by the state at $2,500/hound for the loss of their unsupervised precious gems. Why? Because they purchased a license to hunt? Wisconsin is the only state that reimburses bear hunters for their hounds killed by wolves…hounds unleashed, unsupervised in the pursuit of bear. GPS collars do not substitute handler responsibility.

Some hounders really do have a passion for their hounds. Three were abandoned and tied up to trees on state property near Antigo. Some extreme hounders kill their hounds if they do not meet their expectations. Humane Societies in northern WI report most abandoned hounds have Lyme Disease. How many hounders are checked by enforcement to verify their hounds have rabies tags and dog license tags for each dog while training and hunting? It is believed that approx. 360-450 stray hunting hounds are found in northern Wisconsin per year.

Besides stray hounds running at large, personal encounters with some hounders can be rather interesting. While Representative Adam Jarchow has schemed up a new Hunter Harassment Law, http://www.nbc15.com/home/headlines/Wisconsin-legislator-touts-bill-to-curb-hunter-harassment-337990432.html hunters harass residents even on their own property. Some have stolen trail cams and have threatened to burn the house down if reported to the warden. Another extreme hunter claimed he would trap an alpha male wolf and torture it just for me so I could post the footage on Facebook and go “tree-hugger viral”. After all, we are all considered dumbass, city dwelling tree-huggers and are clueless to wolf issues, over-baiting bears and hounder invasion not to mention public safety. Actually, we are post-graduate bred environmentalists who live and understand the behaviors and wellbeing of wildlife but apparently that doesn’t sink in. For those who disagree with our logic and specifically the condemnation of coyote contests, why not loosen all my lug nuts on my truck and watch a 50lb rim split down the middle and launch like a missile into traffic as I experienced shortly after the Argonne Coyote Killing Contest. Revenge? Better yet, perhaps posting screen shots of several hounders’ CCAP records would provide insight to many matters including claims on hound depredation by wolves. Poaching is yet another matter.

Safety is an issue as several residents from Cable and the Bayfield area recently moved to central WI due to poaching, wild gunfire and continuous hounder conflicts, thanks to Mr. Quintessence. Residents and tourists have the right to venture in the wild of northern WI without fear of losing their pet’s limbs to traps or dodging hounds and bullets. Trespassing is a violation and extreme hunters and hounders require disciplinary action. Safety comes first and the public needs to be aware of how unsafe and unsettling life can be and how wildlife is treated and tormented in northern WI. Eventually, the wild in northern Wisconsin will deteriorate and evolve into an over developed, deforested, polluted, unnatural disaster. While Legislators ‘friend’ greedy developers, energy extractors and factory farmers and ‘unfriend’ public opinion, they continue to move forward with destructive environmental Bills which will deplete our natural resources and transform our forests, public lands and waterways into a pile of profit. Wisconsin is for sale and a more appropriate slogan might be; Escape Wisconsin.

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

Kill, Kill, Kill: The Wisconsin Solution to Everything and other Bits and Pieces from the Bloodsport Capital of the United States

The Wisconsin DNR believes that killing bear cubs like this is the solution to everything. Photo via USFWS.

The Wisconsin DNR believes that killing bear cubs like these is the solution to everything deemed a “nuisance.” Photo via USFWS.

It’s should be no secret to anyone what a cruel and barbaric country the United States of America is when it comes to wildlife. Even when choosing from all 50 states Wisconsin holds the distinction of being the bloodsport capital of the United States. This is a state where the great white hunters can blow away pretty much any animal on the land, in the sky, or in the water. The great white hunters of Wisconsin can litter the landscape with brutal and sadistic landmines known as traps through much of the year with little or no oversight. The great white hunters of Wisconsin and from around the country can haul in massive 55 gallon drums of stale junk food and deposit it all over our lands, including in our National Forests, for six months of the year with no license required and no limits as to how much in total they can deposit. Then we have the obsession with using dogs as weapons in this state. Dogs can be used against one form of wildlife or another 24/7/365 in Wisconsin. The hounded species include wolves (when not under ESA protection), bears, coyotes, bobcats, and even turkeys. I must say that it takes a real manly man to sic a pack of vicious dogs on turkeys. But that is Wisconsin for you.

It’s not enough that they can kill an almost unlimited number of species in this state with every weapon short of artillery. The great white hunters of Wisconsin also get off on shooting tens of thousands of mourning doves each year and even more hand raised non-native Asian pheasants specifically bred to be living targets for the sadists among us.

I frequently come across people that live right in Wisconsin and they have no clue how brutal and sadistic our own state is toward wildlife. Many have no clue that dogs can be used against wildlife and that an archaic and sadistic activity like trapping is still allowed in the 21st Century. Others are appalled that the great white hunters are allowed to blow the state symbol of peace, the mourning dove, out of the sky strictly for their leisure. The same goes for the crows that area allowed to be killed right through their nesting season. When someone delves into that Wisconsin considers “ethical” and “legal” it is horrifying what one discovers is allowed.

Bear Baiting and Hounding 

11896036_157487644585711_3518246126131454685_n

Is a “baiting service” kind of like a “dating service” except for sadists?

Each year in the northern part of our state a state sanctioned bloodbath is allowed to occur. In the months leading up to the annual bear killing season thousands of tons of stale junk food is deposited all over state and federal land with no restrictions, license, or oversight. Each year countless numbers of bears and other wildlife are drawn to this junk food and it likely becomes a staple of their diet. Wisconsin officials see nothing wrong with this practice and in fact in this year’s budget removed the provision that baiters have a license to drop their tons of junk food all over our lands. Many of these same baiters also use dogs against wolves and other wildlife. The hounders, from July 1st of each year, let loose thousands of hounds to be used against the food conditioned bears under the guise of “training.” This goes on for at least two months each year during the hottest part of summer, again with no license required.

This is also the time of the year that we hear about these hounds being killed by wolves in these same areas. The hounders take to social media talking about how their hounds are “family members” and that they care so much for them. Then the Wisconsin DNR cuts them a nice fat $2500 check for their “loss.” Once the check clears the hounders then take to their sadistic brag social media sites and talk about how many of their “disposable” dogs are called “culls” and “shit-eaters.”

Killing as a Solution to Everything 

The lack of empathy and embrace of using killing as an answer for every perceived “nuisance” is also a Wisconsin staple. People choose to live near forests and other wild lands and then have the nerve to complain when they simply see wildlife near their towns. Efforts are rarely made to mitigate the “problem” though non-lethal techniques and killing is almost always the only option put on the table. A recent example of this killing as a “solution” method was put before the village board in the Wisconsin village of Grantsburg in Burnett County. 

The Grantsburg Village Board and Wisconsin DNR took the first steps toward formulating a plan to rid Grantsburg of its nuisance black bears.

The problem is acute on the north side of the village along Jackson Avenue. Village President Glenn Rolloff said, “We have a bear corridor through a couple of residential yards down to Memory Lake.”

DNR Wildlife Biologist and Grantsburg area resident Steve Hoffman represented the DNR at the meeting. Hoffman said he and several high-level DNR supervisors are “well aware” of Grantsburg’s unique bear situation, which has grown from a spring annoyance to a steady, year-around problem.

Hoffman agreed with Rolloff’s assessment that some north side families with children and pets are “practically hostages in their homes” because the bears are so frequently in their yard. “It’s the same animals, coming back time after time,” usually in early morning or 6-9 p.m.

Funny how this can be a “year round problem.” Don’t bears hibernate through the winter? Then of course because bears are seen they are a “nuisance” that holds the local populace “hostage” in their homes. Where have we heard this before? So what is the “solution” to these evil bears having the nerve to walk through a couple of yards? Well kill them of course. Not only kill the adults but kill their cubs too just for having the nerve to be seen.

Hoffman said the DNR would work with the village to formulate a plan based on one or more of three DNR-suggested options:

The first option would be to encourage hunters with bear permits to hunt on the outskirts of Grantsburg to take the nuisance bears during the regular bear hunting season.

A second option would be set baited traps in the village, in remote areas like the ski trails and the Boy Scout Woods. Trapped bears would be destroyed. However, Hoffman said the DNR recognizes the bears are wily enough to avoid most traps.

The third option would be to establish one or more bear shooting zones within the village limits. That is a highly unusual plan for the DNR to suggest, Hoffman said. It would require certified shooters, firing down from an elevated platform, who would only fire into a designated shooting area.

Drastic as it may sound, the village and DNR agreed that if a sow is trapped or shot, any cubs with that sow would also be destroyed. The cubs are as territorial as the sow, and grow up to be the next problem, they agreed.

“This third option of shooting in the village is not hunting,” Hoffman said. “This is different from hunting. It is ridding the village of a nuisance and an ongoing problem.”

Kill, kill, and kill some more. This is the ONLY way Wisconsin tries to deal with any perceived “problem” with wild animals being wild animals. Of course this shouldn’t coem as a shock. In one ass backwards city in Wisconsin they are training their cops to use silencers to kill “nuisance” deer that have the nerve to show their faces in the city limits. I am not joking. The City of Portage, where news reports show rampant theft and vandalism, have tasked their officers to kill deer in the city because apparently fences don’t exist to place around airports:

Several Common Council members have said deer encroachment is an issue that needs to be addressed. Portage Municipal Airport officials have noted that it is a liability issue for pilots trying to land on runways, which are regularly overrun by deer and other wildlife.

“The DNR issues up to 100 deer to be harvested … but there’s no magic number (for the city). We’re just keeping it safer on the runway and roads,” Kremer said.

Safety is the primary goal in conducting the program.

Portage Police Administrative Lt. Keith Klafke said there are several steps they take to ensure there are no risks involved to the public.

“We’ve got to shoot from an elevated position; we bait them to a certain location so we can judge and dictate where our shots are going to be in; and we use ambient light, like the moon or the snow on the ground,” he said.

Klafke and Officer Jason Stenberg are firearms instructors with the Portage Police Department. The city-funded program’s upfront cost was about $1,500 for equipment and supplies.

The city of Portage apparently can’t utilize their police officers to help catch vandals and thieves but they have the time and resources to bait and ambush those vicious and evil deer. Typical Wisconsin attitude, kill, kill, kill because we can’t bother ourselves with fences and other deterrents.

I often wonder if people in this state can even be “bothered” to deal with any issue without killing. While I am sure they exist, I personally have never seen a populace that goes from being completely apathetic to down right barbaric about wildlife issues. A vast number of people in this state seem to be obsessed with trivial things such as sports and alcohol and have no room for concern or caring about anything else. If anything disrupts their precious little bubble, such as the horrific event of seeing a bear walk through your yard, it must be destroyed immediately. Then you have the other part of the populace that derives pleasure from killing anything in ways that should horrify any sane person.

When killing is the ONLY solution allowed by the so-called “authorities” it leaves those of us with any semblance of compassion or empathy feeling like we are pissing in the wind. Those that make the laws and rules allowing such brutal and barbaric appear to only answer to the killing cartels and the voice from the rest of us is ignored no matter how many of us scream or how loud. When you have a member of the legislative committee that makes the wildlife laws and rules being a convicted wildlife violator himself it shows who the laws and rules are really made for.

“Sportsmen for Walker?”

You get what you vote for.

You get what you vote for.

During the 2012 recall and the election for governor last year in some areas of Wisconsin we saw Walker supporters adorn their pickup trucks and properties with stickers and signs proclaiming that they were “Sportsmen for Walker.” I wonder how those “sportsmen” feel now that their boy is planning to sell off some of their prime trout fishing locations on the wishes of Taconite Tommy Tiffany?

The state Department of Natural Resources has identified more than 1,000 acres of state-owned land in Langlade County that could go on the auction block — a move that has angered trout anglers because the properties contain a cache of ecologically significant spring ponds with native brook trout populations.

The ponds, gouged by glaciers thousands of years ago, are fed by rich sources of groundwater that sustain the fish and neighboring streams, rivers and lakes.

Many of the ponds are in remote locations, cloaked by cedars and tamarack. Devotees of spring pond fishing use small canoes, kayaks, float tubes or waders to fish them.

“These are some of the jewels,” said John W. “Duke” Welter of Viroqua, a former member of the Natural Resources Board who was appointed by Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle and is a longtime active leader in Trout Unlimited.

“In each part of the state there are water resources that are the best in their area. As it happens, spring ponds in Langlade County are among the very best trout fishing you can find.”

Members of Trout Unlimited and others learned of the potential sales in the past week and began making calls.

I guess they can’t blame this problem on wolves. Nope, the blame lies solely with Walker and his minions in the legislature like Taconite Tom Tiffany. I guess all those “Sportsmen for Walker” are now getting what they voted for. It was no secret that Walker wanted to sell off prime state owned land for several years. I would imagine soon that the “Sportsmen for Walker” will need to beg old Charlie and Dave Koch to use what once was their prime huntin’ and fishin’ land and bodies of water. If both aren’t already too polluted of course. You really do get what you vote for and those of us in Wisconsin are getting a whole steaming pile of it courtesy of the “Sportsmen for Walker.” You made your bed and now you must lay in it.

Please allow this beautiful little rat to play a tiny violin to go along with your sorrow "Sportsmen for Walker."

Please allow this beautiful little rat to play a tiny violin to go along with your sorrow “Sportsmen for Walker.”

League of Human Voters- Wisconsin Chapter: Please Join

We need a voice and I cannot stress enough the importance of getting involved if you care about wildlife. Please join the League of Humane Voters-Wisconsin Chapter to make YOUR voice heard. Membership is FREE and this is the FIRST time a group exists solely to give us a voice on animal issues for both domestic animals and wildlife at the ballot box. Please visit the website below for more information and to join.

League of Human Voters- Wisconsin Chapter 

Wisconsin’s Shame: Fluffy Propaganda Piece Tries to Justify the Hounding of Wolves and Fails Miserably

Replace the hounder on the horse with a hounder in a pickup and this is Wisconsin.

Replace the hounder on the horse with a hounder in a pickup and this is Wisconsin.

Teddy Roosevelt did it. So did General George Armstrong Custer. Now over 100 years later, a few Wisconsin hunters can say they’ve hunted wolves using dogs too.

“Jay, Jake and their friends have a reputation of working hard and playing hard. That also includes taking their hunting and the care of their dogs seriously. They simply wouldn’t put their dogs in a situation where there’s a strong possibility they could be killed or injured. As Jay says, “there are risks when my kids play football too, but it’s a risk I accept.”

The above paragraphs are a prime example of what you are about to read and see in a disgusting fluff piece written for a propaganda laced kill everything website called “Petersen’s Hunting.” The website is half advertisement of the latest killing implements for the great white hunter, and half fluffy snuff pieces that try to glamorize the most abhorrent and unethical hunting practices used by slob hunters and sadists.

In a propaganda filled article entitled, Let Loose the Hounds: Why We Should Use Hounds for Wolf Hunting, the author tries to paint a picture of the hounders being “responsible” and not just randomly taking a “bad shot” at wolves while their harmless little fluffy dogs “bay” a docile wolf. They even make the claim that wolves and dogs don’t fight in December (??????). The wolf just quietly waits a safe distance from the docile little “family pets” and waits to be shot by the great white hunter apparently.

The brothers use trailing hounds when hunting and planned to use the same dogs they use on bears and coyotes on the wolves. Experienced hunters, they knew the December hunt wasn’t the time to worry about wolves injuring their hounds.

“Our biggest concern over having a bad encounter with a wolf isn’t during the December hunting season, it’s during the bear season (bear dog training season opens on July 1 and hunting season starts in early September), especially if we get near a wolf rendezvous site when hunting bears,” said Jay.

That is one of the most frequently used talking points among hounders since dogs were allowed to be used against wolves. If that is the case how can these “playing hard” great white hunters explain the fact that since December of last year until now there have been nine dogs killed or injured, allegedly by wolves? Funny how all of these hound “depredations” occurred after the wolf was placed back under federal protection, but that is another story for later.

“We’re not going to release our dogs on the tracks of multiple wolves, we look for one animal. Single wolves aren’t as bold as a pack of wolves will be. When we released our dogs, which are basically athletes doing what they’ve been bred to do, we expected them to bay up the wolf just like they do with a bear that doesn’t tree,” Jay continued.

Baying up is a term used by hound hunters when an animal holds its ground as the dogs circle it. “That’s exactly what’s happened this year with the wolves. None of our dogs were hurt during the chase nor was the wolf bit by the dogs before the animal was killed,” Jake added. “In fact, the dogs stayed further away from the wolf than they did when they’ve had a bear bayed up.”

The Johnson boys traditionally use Walker hounds. “These aren’t fighting dogs, they’re family-raised pets. The smaller dogs in the 40- to 50-pound range were the ones that caught and bayed up the wolves,” said Jake.

So the wolf “wasn’t bit” according to these hounders? Take a look at the picture of a hounder killed gut shot wolf that accompanies this portion of the article. In addition to the fact the wolf appears to have been shot in the gut, look at the rear legs. Did the hounders shave the legs of hair after they killed the wolf? Not likely, so that lead to only one conclusion. It appears that the “family raised pets” took a few chunks out of this poor wolf. But don’t let photographic evidence get in the way of a good propaganda snuff story.

Hounder killed wolf. Used under "Fair Use."

Hounder killed wolf. Used under “Fair Use.”

I’ve hunted this area before and knew there was a funnel of sorts up ahead of the wolf and dogs, so I headed up toward it. As I got closer, I saw the wolf coming and was surprised to see it was a big black one. There was only one dog following it now, but I could hear the others coming. They kept their distance from each other, neither wanting to engage in any fighting.

With the other dogs coming, the wolf finally bayed up and I managed to get within 40 yards of him and took the shot with my .243,” said Jay. “He went right down on the spot. I’ve spent my whole life hunting, but this was one of the most memorable hunts of my life.”

Notice how the hounder has to keep mentioning that there was no fighting going on? That “brave” shot the great white hunter took appears to be another gut shot judging from the snuff picture accompanying the article.

hounds_wolves_5

Gut shot hounder killed wolf. Photo used through “Fair Use.”

The next snuff story again has to mention how the wolf and dogs “didn’t fight” and how the wolf was “magnificent” and they were “respected” by his hounds.

“When he was about 50 yards away, he gave me the shot I wanted and I dropped him with my .223. He was a magnificent animal and it’s a hunt I’ll never forget,” Jake said, adding that over the course of two hunts he saw the wolf six or seven times and the dogs always kept their distance. “Respect was given by both wolf and dog.”

So what do you do when you come across a “magnificent” animal? Why you gut shoot it and then after it dies you pose with the corpse of course. Here is some of that hounder “respect” for the “magnificent animal” in action.

Yet another hounder killed and gut shot wolf. Photo used via "Fair Use."

Yet another hounder killed and gut shot wolf. Photo used via “Fair Use.”

The title of this propaganda snuff article is Let Loose the Hounds: Why We Should Use Hounds for Wolf Hunting. Through all the bluster and ammosexual blather about bullet calibers and making sure to mention that the packs of vicious dogs were really sweet and cuddly “family pets” that didn’t fight the wolves, I fail to find anything about “why we should use hounds for wolf hunting.” I read a disgusting fluff piece trying to make hounders look ethical and “respectful” of wolves but I saw nothing explaining “why” dogs should be allowed to go after wolves. Did you? I also saw plenty of pictures that show me that these hounders love gut shooting wolves and one picture that sure looked like the wolf had dog bite injuries to the rear legs. This is the kind of revolting garbage that hounders and their propaganda mouthpieces are putting out there to make everyone believe that using dogs against wolves is just this innocent activity and it helps to “manage” the wolf population in Wisconsin. Take the final paragraph from this disgusting article:

But there’s one thing the brothers want people to know. “We don’t hate wolves like some do, but we realize their population needs to be controlled like any other wild animal and we’d like the opportunity to do it with the use of our dogs.”

Yes, because running dogs against and gut shooting wolves certainly shows that you “don’t hate” wolves. This article and the myriad of others like it show exactly why wolves need to maintain federal protections. These monsters believe in their sick minds that it is perfectly acceptable to run packs of dogs against wolves for no other reason than to for sadistic pleasure. Each year Wisconsin allows thousands of dogs to be set loose on our lands and national forests. Before the court order reinstated federal protections for wolves in the Great Lakes, Wisconsin hounders had ZERO restrictions on how they could “train” their dogs to be used against those wolves. They could run an unlimited number of dogs against wolves 24 hours a day, seven says a week, and 365 days a year.

This leads us to the current crop of bills before Congress intending to strip federal protections from wolves in the Great Lakes and Wyoming. One bill in particular, HR 843, permanently strips all federal protections from wolves in the Great Lakes and would allow states to eradicate the species with no federal recourse or chance of relisting. That is not hyperbole or an over-exaggeration. That is what that bill would lead to, especially with hostile states like Wisconsin, the ONLY state that allows dogs to be used against wolves. Not only use dogs against wolves, but do so 24/7/365 with ZERO restrictions. Is there a better argument for maintaining federal protections? There shouldn’t need to be.

Over the past week the anti-wildlife Obama Administration, the states of Wisconsin and Michigan, and a collection of Bob Welch lobbied killing cartels all filed appeals against the December federal court ruling that reinstated protections for the the wolves in the Great Lakes. The hostility, fear mongering,and flat out lies directed at this species should horrify anyone that cares about wildlife and maintaining the Endangered Species Act. Add in disgusting fluff pieces like the one featured above and should there be any doubt as to what this species is facing?

Please contact Congress and the White House and ask them why they support legalized dog fighting? When they claim that they don’t, make sure to point out the disgusting practices that Wisconsin allows and ask how this isn’t the same as pit bulls being engaged against each other in a fight to the death? Should one of the canines being wild make this any less revolting? Ask why one species should be allowed to be harassed and attacked by dogs 24/7/365. Because if your member of Congress supports renewed “state management” of wolves in Wisconsin, they support dogs fighting. But I guess if heartless animal killer Teddy Roosevelt and the genocidal maniac George Custer did it I supposed it must be okay, right?

Find Your Senators and Representatives

Contact the White House

The “Wolf Depredation” Scam Continues and Your Stories Wanted

This is "tradition" and "heritage" in Wisconsin.

This is “tradition” and “heritage” in Wisconsin.

Lately this blog has been gaining a significant crop of new readers and wildlife advocates that have been elated to have found a source that will actually report the thing that I do. I am both proud and humbled at the positive feedback I am getting for publishing this blog. I am willing to bring to light the issues and opinions that many of us harbor but are afraid to put out there. One of the best things about increased readership of the blog is that wildlife advocates and average citizens from Northern Wisconsin finally feel that they have an outlet to express their frustrations and disdain over what is essentially the extremist hunting group and hounder based anarchy that the Wisconsin DNR turns a blind eye to or even encourages. As a follow up to my blog post yesterday about livestock interests scamming the wolf “depredation” system I am going to share an email that I received from a northern Wisconsin resident, that I know to be of the highest integrity, and her interactions with farmers up there.

As I was reviewing the depredation figures from year to year on the DNR chart, red flags started popping up big time. Taking into consideration years prior to wolf hunting and comparing the past three years; numbers substantially grew. Interesting considering wolf population should have decreased due to hunting or did the population rebound so significantly, that more depredation took place? With this in mind, read on.

Whenever I run into a local around here; I pose a few questions in friendly conversation to see how they respond. Yesterday, I ran into a farmer who raises beef cattle north of me. He stated he lost many cattle last year due to the hostile winter. His neighbor also raises livestock. He lost 15-cattle due to wolves. His neighbor tried convincing him to make a buck and claim the losses were due to wolves. He would not do it. Solid proof…you cannot trust farmers or the USDA. More importantly, this must be the same farmer who claimed 15-cattle killed by wolves on the DNR chart. It is the only claim for 15-cattle. How ironic is that? Now who do you believe? This kind of deceit is what controls Congress. It WAS nice to know there are some honest farmers around here though. Another recent conversation was with a (position removed). He knows I’m a wolf advocate. He is not. We were discussing wolves; his argument was about his friend who operates a hunting outfit out west. His business is dwindling due to wolves hunting all the elk. The (position removed) travels out there to hunt and has no luck. He stated, “Every time we call the elk in, the wolves come”. I wasn’t sure how to comment because it seemed like a natural thing to me. What do you expect? He also stated he believes a wolf would eat a child. I walked away waving him in disbelief.

This kind of confirms what many of us have been speculating about all along. The whole “wolf depredation” program is one giant scam for irresponsible ranchers and hounders and is used as propaganda whenever talk of delsiting wolves or opening a killing season approaches.

I would also like to share the experiences of a Northwoods resident that I received a few weeks back about how hounders have ZERO regard for property rights and the toxic mindset that revolved around their “sport.”

I live in northern WI in a remote spot. Acres away from anyone. I live w/wolves. Their numbers have decreased substantially in the past 2-yrs. I’ve caught poachers and reported them to the Federal warden and WI DNR as my property butts Nicolet National Forest. I’ve chased poachers with my shotgun. The quota for wolf harvest had been met 4-months prior. I have met w/Andy, Game Warden in my area on several occasions and he is very receptive to the problem. I spoke w/Dave MacFarland, DNR Large Carnivore Specialist and shared my concerns. Other than law enforcement, natural resource enforcement, Sierra Club and a handful of concerned individuals it seems WI residents show little or no concern regarding poaching or maintaining a healthy ecosystem. They seem oblivious to the government playing Russian Roulette with the preservation of our wildlife. Wolves are necessary to complete our ecosystem. Delisting them again is pure ignorance as WI US Representative Reed Ribble is currently pushing through congress. It seems the DNR has had their hands tied as the Bear Hunters Association gathered accomplices from NRA, Hunters Rights Coalition and Safari Club International to write a wolf hunt law and get it passed previously. The ATV clubs are even regulating the DNR as to where ATV signage should be placed. Apparently, DNR personnel w/degrees in enforcement and biology, etc are somewhat powerless to the less educated clubs who are dictating the policies. Obviously, the sport and recreation is more important than the science.

Fact is, it is science and biology that feed the sport. Then there are the hateful, crude comments from wolf haters who hunt them because they are evil or because they blame deer population reduction to wolf kill. This category if idiots are delirious. More deer are killed from road kill than wolf killing deer. During hunting season, I have half dozen or more hounds trample through my property for 2-weeks straight every day at the same time causing havoc with no hunter in sight. Whether these are bear hounds or illegal wolf hunting hounds they are illegally trespassing and chasing wolves, migrating birds, young sand-hilled cranes, and a long laundry list of wildlife. I hold a Scientific Collector’s License w/the state & US Fish & Wildlife. I also photograph wildlife and this outburst is destructive to my work and landscape much less my dog. They roam unattended. In my opinion, it seems our recreational clubs are intervening where and when they should not be. Farmers/ranchers are blaming wolves for lost livestock. And the general public…where are you? Science is not in the best interest of the clubs, wolf haters, or US Reed Ribble, etc. Look what Idaho is doing…making a contest out of wolf slaughtering. The real issue is economics. The planet is over-populated causing the need for more food. Many ranchers are honest, working hard to produce meals to put on tables. However, wolves have always lived here and farmers/ranchers were aware of that when they made the decision to raise cattle, sheep, dairy cows, etc. The percentage of wolves killing livestock isn’t even substantial. Ranchers get reimbursed. Bottom line: delisting again is just an ugly excuse to slaughter wolves for sport. The real issue is over-population of the human race. What will it take to keep wolves on the endangered species list and balance our ecosystem? Brains.

If you are a northern Wisconsin resident and wish to share your experiences with hounders, trappers, and anti-wolf people, I encourage you to comment on this post or use the “Contact Us” link at the top of the page. Your name and information will not be published but we would love to hear your stories and share them with other like minded wildlife advocates on this blog.

Contact Us