Sunday, May 14, 2006

Yellowstone Brucellosis Policies Suspect

or, is it montana?
-- The question that sensible citizens are asking is: "why is it that we harass bison and not elk; since elk carry brucellosis and have infected domestic livestock, while bison carry brucellosis and have not been shown to infect any livestock?"
-- The elk in the picture is too thin. The elk in the picture is denuding Yellowstone National Park. The elk in the picture is sacred to Montana citizens because it draws hunters to the state and the hunters bring money. The elk is allowed to roam and carry brucellosis where ever it chooses. Neither Yellowstone, nor Montana, nor Idaho, nor Wyoming care to address the problem of the sacred cows. there are more than 3,500 elk in the northern herd, alone. There are so many that Yellowstone Park officials can't count all of them!
-- The bison in the picture is part of a herd that was artificially produced and partially domesticated at 'Buffalo Ranch' in the Lamar valley. There are about 4,000 of them this year. They too are eating Yellowstone to death.
-- Montana's Governor Schweitzer wants to buy more grazing allotment s to allow the bison room to roam. Many well meaning activists pretend that the Yellowstone bison herd is a natural phenomenon and that the bison are wild. They see the bison as more important than elk, and they indulge themselves in the pretense that this artificially produced group of ungulants is somehow special.
-- There is very little consistency in the management policies of these two herds of animals. It's time for an informed public to act. The policies for management should not be misinformed by the economic value of the elk; nor should they be misinformed by romanticised versions of an artificially produced - genetically mixed - herd of bison. The policies should be informed by the need to manage not the animals, but the habitat. That job will require better minds than Yellowstone has been willing to pay for in the past.