bears, wolves, and warblers

 Some wildlife quick hits:

  •  If you have some time, check out these amazing polar bear images captured by John Kazlowski
  • Last week, the Montana legislature rejected a bill that would have placed management of the state's buffalo population under the state's Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Parks.  Right now buffalo are managed by the Montana Department of Livestock, which tells you just about all you need to know about whose interests come first in Montana.  Imagine if the main agency that managed federal forests was a part of the Department of Agriculture.  Oh, wait...  
  • At the same time, the Idaho Senate approved a bill that would offer the Idaho's wolf population to other states.  Gee, I'm sure sad Idaho hasn't had the opportunity to manage wolves without federal oversight.  Clearly they would do a bang-up job. 
  • Speaking of wolves, they continue to spread in Oregon.  The most recent citing is in Central Oregon's Santiam Pass.  Pretty cool video here.  (Hat tip: Ralph Maughan's Wildlife News.) 
  • The Washington Post has a fascinating piece today by Juliet Eilperin about a Department of the Defense initiative to accumulate endangered species "credits" by paying landowners to preserve habitat--which then allows the military to destroy the habitat of endnagered Golden-cheeked warblers at their instillations in the course of training.  The problems identified by the article are typical of much so-called "habitat conservation planning" for wildlife today.  It also makes one wonder about the reliability of conservation banking and credit schemes for all kinds of environmental problems--global warming mitigation credits, in particular.