The Dirt, March 13: "Canine Assets"
War of the Wolves
Considering the Mexican gray wolf is a distinct subspecies, there are not "tons of wolves" in New Mexico. To quote from the US Fish and Wildlife Service website on the Mexican Gray Wolf Recovery Program, "The Mexican gray wolf is the smallest, southern-most occuring, rarest, and most genetically distinct subspecies of gray wolf in North America." Doesn't sound like "tons" to me.
But more importantly, why the intense wringing of hands and tearing of garments over the reintroduction of the Mexican gray wolf? To hear those who are anti-wolf/pro-cattle talk, if wolves were wiped off the face of the earth, then it would be all buttercups and roses for the cattle industry.
Unfortunately, the facts and the truth are quite different. According to the last report from the National Agricultural Statistics Service, Agricultural Statistics Board, United States Department of Agriculture, wolves account for less cattle losses than almost every other predator (only 3.7 percent of the total cattle lost to predators; only bears kill less).
Respiratory problems, digestive problems, calving problems, weather-related, unknown non-predator, other non-predator, other diseases, lameness/injury, coyotes, mastitis, metabolic problems, poisoning, dogs, mountain lions and bobcats, theft, other predators and vultures INDIVIDUALLY CAUSE MORE CATTLE DEATHS THAN WOLVES!
So why the relentless war against wolves? Anyone have a good answer for that now [that] you know the truth?
The fact that the Mexican gray wolf was designated as nonessential/experimental does not mean that they are not endangered. They received this designation as an exception to the Endangered Species Act. This exception is, in retrospect and in my opinion, one of the biggest mistakes of the recovery plan. But to be clear, the Mexican gray wolf is the most endangered mammal in North America and THE most endangered wolf in the world.
The livestock industry and their federal sidekick, the US Department of Agriculture's "Wildlife Services," frequently assign livestock deaths to wolves when there's little to no proof. I am completely skeptical about these exaggerated livestock-death claims, and so should the agency charged with protecting Mexican wolves, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, be, too. We're all getting fleeced by manufactured baloney.
Laws of the Land
Boy, "sustainability" sure is in fashion [cover, March 13: "Living Green"]. Everybody's doing it. But no one seems to remember the laws of thermodynamics: 1) You can't win. 2) You can't break even. And 3) You['ve] got to play the game. In other words, there always is waste. There has to be. Not man's laws. It's just the way this universe is set up.
The only real solution to any and all environmental problems is less people. One child per family. One is enough. That's it.
Cash and Credit
While I appreciate the article on the City's Change 4 Change collaborative program, I need to point out that the idea for this effort came from high school student Eva Ross [Arts Valve, March 6: "Gird Your Coins"]. Eva brought the idea to me and was instrumental in seeing the effort through with our Parking Division and the Arts Commission. Ross deserves the credit for this great new project.
Patti J Bushee
City Councilor, Dist. 1
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The Dirt, March 13: "Canine Assets"