Big, Bad Woofs

Just the right subject to take me out of my city mentality, my parents showed me this picture when I first arrived in Montana. The story goes that this woman they know was out bow-hunting in Idaho and this 150-lb wolf jumped out of the bushes about 10 feet in front of her. The woman felt as if she was being tracked as its prey, and had a gun with her so she pulled it out and shot the wolf and escaped, guessing others were closeby in a pack. She later went back to have a picture with it.

There has been great tension between men and wolf in the northern states, especially since Canadian wolves were experimentally reintroduced to Yellowstone National Park and Idaho in the mid-nineties to thin out the elk population, a project first proposed in 1966. “The Idaho state government opposed the reintroduction of wolves into the state and many citizens feel as if the wolves were forced onto the state by the federal government” (Wikipedia article). Wolves are at the top of the food chain and are considered a threat to farmers, ranchers, and hunters. There are now just under 100 documented wolves in the park, though some sites estimate nearly 1000 wolves between Montana and Idaho.

This was an interesting bumpersticker I saw at the gas station my second day in Montana: Save 100 elk, Kill a wolf. Ah, home sweet home!