Dolphin dies in Gowanus Canal despite Brooklynites cheering it on

Crowds wondered why the dolphin, who wandered into an industrial superfund site, was left to die, thrashing in shallow water.

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Who to blame for invasives? Hunters, wildlife watchers and boats, mainly

wild pigs, feral hogs

Wildlife watchers and hunters are to blame for most invasive species that didn’t hitch a ride in the shipping process. Birders brought sparrows and starlings. Hunters brought and/or distributed wild boar, deer, Canada geese and pheasant.

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Happy Wolf Week: the Wolves Want Your Help

Dozens of wolf centers have popped up in the last couple decades, ranging from official breeding centers to sanctuaries for wolf-dog hybrids. You’re also probably near a Mexican gray wolf, one of the country’s rarest mammals.

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USDA Kills Another 4 million animals, including 477 dogs and 1,991 feral cats

Coyote

You know how Americans are appalled every time there’s a story out of China or Iraq about the government thugs primitively rounding up dogs and shooting them? Well, we do that, too. On purpose. Federal agents are out there killing dogs, more than one a day. They shot 157 dogs to death. And it’s not just in the yahoo states out west, either. (Although Texas and Arizona are the top states of dog-killing.) The USDA somehow insinuated itself into dog situations in 32 states. They went out and shot two dogs in Ohio and 30 in California. And it wasn’t because they feared they were rabid, either. They only tested 14 dogs for rabies.

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Lifesavers May Save Even More Wild Horses At Auction Sept 18

Mustangs / wildhorserescue.org

Lifesavers Wild Horse Rescue may be buying some more horses at auction today to save them from slaughter in Fallon, NV, Livestock exchange.

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Stay at a Uinta Ground Squirrel Town in Yellowstone

screech of mammoth ground squirrel town

Most people go to Yellowstone hoping to see a grizzly bear, wolf or bison. But the great thing about the park is all the little bonus animals you’ll be surprised with along the way. We didn’t realize when we booked at cabin at Mammoth Hot Springs that we would be staying on a Uinta Ground Squirrel town.

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STORY IDEAS

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/unleashed/2010/05/pete-moose-vermont.htmlVermonts moose

NJ ospreyhttp://njospreyproject.blogspot.com/2010/05/tis-season.html

world cup animal maniahttp://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/photo/2010-05/20/c_13306706.htmhttp://news.xinhuanet.com/english2010/photo/2010-05/20/c_13306731.htm

Sea lions take over dock at Moss Landing, California

tagged manateeshttp://skimmer.disl.org/pastissues/vol21_no5_2010/article3.html

NC horses in VAhttp://hamptonroads.com/2010/05/wild-nc-horses-were-determined-become-virginiansInstead, they are thought to have been descended from Spanish mustangs that lived free on the North Carolina Outer Banks for centuries. While many of these mustang descendants now live in the Currituck Wild Horse Sanctuary in North Carolina, the Pungo horses were bound and determined to cross over the state line and establish residence in Virginia.Over time, this group, under the leadership of a shiny red stallion with a long black mane, left their larger gang behind in North Carolina. Perhaps to isolate his mares from the other stallions, the big male began bringing his family up into Virginia, where they enjoyed fine dining in grassy Sandbridge yards and entranced many residents.Donna Snow, president of Virginia Wild Horse Rescue,

Pelicans, Otters, Manatees Could be Hurt by Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

Deepwater Horizon oil spill seen from space over LAImagery courtesy of NASA Earth Observatory

Endangered sea turtles, herons, white and brown pelicans, dolphins, whales, manatees, tuna and assorted sea birds  could all be hurt by the Gulf of Mexico oil spill that is now 16 miles off the tip of Louisiana and alarming wildlife officials all the way to Florida.

The Coast Guard is burning the oil, hoping that will keep it from making landfall and destroying wetlands. I wonder if, ironically, the giant dead zone in the gulf may mean that the area the oil spill hits may be devoid of life anyway. The next step for wildlife rescuers would be to herd animals out of the area by hazing them.  The International Bird Rescue Research Center in Texas says they’ve been put on alert for the decapitated oil well, which is gushing about 1,000 barrels (42,000 US gallons) of crude daily and already can be seen from space, with a circumference of 600 miles.

If the spill stays offshore then the impact will likely be minimal to birds. Coastal birds that are highly at risk if the spill hits shore are brown and white pelicans, terns, gulls, shorebirds, skimmers and herons. Nesting and feeding areas for birds and sea turtles such as marshes and beaches could be impacted.

Loggerhead and Kemp’s Ridley turtles are in the area, Live Science says. Birds are vulnerable if they ingest the oil or get coated in it. The

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Western States Suffer Declining Deer Numbers, Higher Deer Tension

Mule Deer

Mule Deer by Marvin James Phelps

The southwest has a deer shortage and deer controversy.

What could be controversial, you think? We’ve all been told that deer cause havoc, eating forest understory, crashing into 1.5 million cars every year, which kills 150 people and costs $1.1 billion.  Many people I talk to say they approve of hunting just because it cuts down the deer population. A Responsive Management Survey found more Americans approve of hunting deer (78%) than any other animal.

A Westfield State College paper from Massachusetts paper sums up the gratitude we should feel towards hunters because they “provide a means of controlling deer populations. Without some means of restraint, there is the potential to have deer expanding into areas beyond their natural habitat. This can endanger humans as well as the deer themselves.”

But in this case–as in many others–hunters want to increase the number of deer.  Nevada’s mule deer numbers have been cut by half since 1988, so hunters want to start shooting coyote and mountain lion. But state game officials say that won’t do any good; habitat loss is to blame for the deer decline. Tony Wasley, Nevada’s mule deer specialist, told USAToday that “all the predator control in the world won’t result in any benefit.”

But, science be damned, the governor and the hunters he appointed on the state’s wildlife commission want to shoot some varmints. Nevada Wildlife Commission Chairman Gerald Lent asked the feds to start killing predators (they said no,

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Battle of the NJ Bear Hunt Polls

grown black bear

When the Humane Society announced a poll this week that showed New Jersey residents opposed a bear 44% to 41%, it kicked out a discussion of whether the results are really true. Different polls are all over the map. Hunters point to this 2004 poll saying 66% of New Jersey residents support hunting in general. But of course that’s not bear hunting (another poll shows approval of bear hunting at 47% nationwide).

So I asked the company that did the state poll–and which specializes in hunting-related surveys–about their full results. Mark Duda, executive director of Responsive Management, was nice enough to send me the links to two thorough surveys they did on New Jersey hunting attitudes and the way people view hunting different species.

Duda doubts this week’s poll results. “I’d have to see how the question was worded but that result would fly in the face of all other research,” he says. Indeed, the poll question does push. I wish they had just asked a straightforward question.

QUESTION: The state of New Jersey has protected black bears since 1970 with only two trophy hunts permitted in the past forty years. The state is now considering allowing hunters to kill up to 400 black bears. Do you support or oppose the hunting of black bears in New Jersey?

But the results fall in line almost exactly with a Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind 2007 poll that also had 44% disapproving and 41% approving and that question was straightforward:

 Now lastly, thinking

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