* Update from the Field
Dear Buffalo Friends,
Haunted is the landscape without the presence of buffalo.
Patrols have seen barely 200 buffalo, but only miles
deep inside Yellowstone National Park. In the Park's
western lands fewer than five buffalo have been spotted.
The Park's north boundary from the Blacktail Plateau
through the Lamar Valley, where buffalo typically flourish,
is also profoundly empty. Where thousands recently roamed,
very few buffalo have been seen.
The absence of buffalo within Montana does mean that
many may be spared in the hunt, but it's also a very
telling sign of the drastic toll last years' slaughter
took upon our shaggy friends. The Park estimates that
there are fewer than 3,000 bison within Yellowstone.
This encompasses the entirety of the United State's
wild American bison population. And, sadly, from what
we have seen - or, rather, have not seen - it appears
there are even far fewer left than that.
Bison have suffered centuries of persecution. That they
remain among us is testament to their ability to survive;
they embody the very essence of persistence, resistance
and endurance. And also hope. Even so, the last wild
population is in a perilous situation and requires immediate
and strong protection, protection that does not come
from being raised as livestock on ranches, placed on
commemorative coins, or from being fenced in and unable
to migrate and flourish, something denied all public
herds. Wild bison must roam! They are a gift to the
grass; the heartbeat of this continent. This awareness
is spreading. With your help, we are making a difference,
influencing policy and changing minds in our efforts
to secure habitat in Montana and elsewhere, where wild
bison will be welcomed, respected, and protected.
We'd like to share with you a brief update on our efforts
to protect Horse Butte for wild buffalo. Please visit
Butte Habitat Update page to learn the latest.
As always, thank you for being with us and for the buffalo.
Your strong support of our work and your undying love
for the buffalo keeps our collective, attainable dream
* Please Donate Now! Keep BFC on the Front Lines!
Buffalo Field Campaign has been feeling the effects
of the economic collapse.
We've been doing everything we can to cut costs without
hampering the effectiveness of our efforts, but it does
cost money to feed, house, clothe, and train our field
volunteers; send representatives to public meetings;
and document, write, and edit video, photos, and communications
with you, the people who care for and act on behalf
of the wild buffalo. And while we are very hopeful that
the new administration and Congress will take action
to protect the buffalo, it will require that we make
several costly trips to Washington DC this winter and
With the overwhelming majority of our funding coming
in the form of individual donations (the five, ten,
twenty, and fifty dollar contributions sent in by people
like you) we are dependent upon you for meeting our
budget. While it's never easy to ask for money we are
very proud of our work and know you believe in us too.
So please, if you are able, make
an online donation today or send a check or money
order to: Buffalo Field Campaign/ PO Box 957/ West Yellowstone,
MT 59758. Donations are tax-deductible and go directly
to our front-lines grassroots work to protect the Buffalo.
For the Buffalo,
Dan Brister, MS
Buffalo Field Campaign
* Update on Royal Teton Ranch Land Lease
Many heartfelt thanks to all of you who submitted comments
to Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks on the Royal Teton
Ranch (RTR) land lease. The overwhelming number of public
comments received showed a strong opposition to this
bad deal for bison. Thank you! But, unfortunately, it
appears that FWP is ignoring the public once again,
and have decided to implement the land lease. You can
FWP's decision notice and please consider dropping
a line to the new Region 3 Director for Montana Fish,
Wildlife & Parks, Joe
Maurier, to express your feelings about this decision.
On December 11, the Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks
Commission will meet to discuss the land lease where
they are expected to make a recommendation based, in
part, on public comments received. From there, on December
17 and 18, the Interagency Bison Management Plan agencies
are expected to discuss the issue further. We will let
you know the news as it happens. Thank you again for
being such a strong voice for the last wild bison population
in the U.S.
* View & Vote! Belgian Director Creates
A film director from Belgium, Sebastien Wielemans, came
to Buffalo Field Campaign this October as part of "The
Adventure of Eight Video Nomads," a competitive
video project that brought four European film makers
to American, and sent four Canadians to Europe to do
film projects. Sebastien decided to do a film about
the last wild buffalo, which he titled "Where
the Bisons Roam." The film features interviews
with BFC's Mike Mease as well as BFC's footage from
the field. It's a wonderful, short piece worth watching!
Please take a moment to watch
Sebastien's video. So far, his film is in the lead
among the eight contestants, and if he wins, his film
"Where the Bisons Roam" will be seen in numerous
international venues! If you have the time, you can
also subscribe to vote for Sebastien's film and help
get the buffalo's story told to audiences in other countries!
You do need Adobe Flash Player to view the film.
Many thanks to Sebastien for coming to Buffalo Field
Campaign, learning about the buffalo, and choosing to
do this amazing project for them! The best of luck to
you Sebastien! You can also drop
Sebastien a line to talk about his film.
* Last Words
"In the beginning of all things, wisdom and knowledge
were with the animals, for Tirawa, the One Above, did
not speak directly to man. He sent certain animals to
tell men that he showed himself through the beast, and
that from them, and from the stars and the sun and moon
should man learn.. "
~ Eagle Chief (Letakos-Lesa), Pawnee
* Kill Tally
AMERICAN BISON ELIMINATED from the last wild population
in the U.S.
2008-2009 Total: 2
2008-2009 Slaughter: 0
2008-2009 Hunt: 1
2008-2009 Quarantine: 0
2008-2009 Shot by Agents: 1
2007-2008 Total: 1,616
Total Since 2000: 3,683*
*includes lethal government action, quarantine, hunts
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