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           Weekly Update from the Field June 23, 2011
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Wild Bison 2012 Calendars! DOL Trespasses on Buffalo-Friendly Land
* BFC's Wild Bison 2012 Calendar Now Available
* Update from the Field
* Park Service Responds to Letter from Congress
* Thanks for Visiting BFC!
* Rise of the Buffalo: Artist Donates Proceeds of Buffalo Song to BFC
* By the Numbers
* Last Words ~ Buffalo Soldiers

* BFC's Wild Bison 2012 Calendar Now Available

BFC's 2012 calendar is loaded with images that celebrates wild buffalo in all their majesty 365 days a year! Amazing cover photo, shown here, taken and generously donated by Kim Kaiser.

Connect with the buffalo through Buffalo Field Campaign's brand new calendar for 2012. Filled with eye-catching and awe-inspiring images of wild buffalo on their native habitat in Yellowstone country, this year's calendar is a beautiful tribute to his amazing species.

Wild Bison 2012 is a positive celebration of the last continuously wild herds of bison in America. This year's calendar features photographs submitted by BFC supporters or shot by volunteers. Each month offers a seasonal perspective on wild bison and highlights their natural history.

With a limited print run of just 5,000 calendars, be sure to order yours as soon as possible.

* Update from the Field

The Galanis Family has made it crystal clear that wild buffalo are part of the landscape, and are welcome to coexist on their land. Montana livestock agents, however, choose to ignore the rights of these buffalo-friendly property owners. BFC file photos by Stephany. Click photos for larger images.

The Montana Department of Livestock (DOL) exhibited their disregard for the rights of local residents last week when four agents on horseback trespassed on the Galanis property, an 800-acre refuge for wild bison nestled on the Horse Butte Peninsula, bordering Gallatin National Forest. The DOL's target was a small family group of buffalo, including seventeen adults and sub-adults, and eight calves. The Galanis Family wants buffalo to be able to access their land and has made it clear to the agencies that anti-buffalo agents and activities are not permitted on their land. Numerous signs are posted, meetings have been held, and the Galanis Family's wishes have been ignored time and time again by the Montana Department of Livestock. In recent years the DOL has attempted to circumvent outright trespass by sending their low-flying helicopter to chase buffalo off of the private land towards waiting horsemen on adjacent Gallatin National Forest land. Last week they actually sent in four horsemen to chase the buffalo away. The Galanis' are not taking this violation lightly.

This short video clip, by Horse Butte resident Ann Stovall, captures the trespass of four MT Department of Livestock agents on horseback, as they harass a family group with newborn calves off of buffalo-friendly private land.

The hazing operation pressed the buffalo east along the Madison River corridor of Gallatin National Forest, where more government riders from Yellowstone National Park, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks, and USDA-Animal & Plant Health Inspection Service with assistance from Park and Forest Service law enforcement. By the end of the day nearly sixty wild American buffalo had been chased off of cattle-free public and private lands, onto Cougar Knoll inside Yellowstone National Park. This trek is nearly 12 miles long, and agents offer the buffalo no rest, no grazing, water, nor nursing time for calves. It is a tragedy that the United States government wastes American tax dollars to harass and harm a native wildlife species - the beloved American buffalo - for the sake of the economic interests of the harmful livestock industry. Hopefully, this will be the last hazing operation of this season and the buffalo - and BFC volunteers - will be afforded some much-needed respite.

The government agents have done their damage and - hopefully - left for the season. Montana is like a buffalo ghost town, sadly now holding only memories of their presence. Thankfully buffalo adhere to natural law and not the government's; not too many months from now this little calf will return again with its family, roaming the lands that are their birthright, despite the odds. BFC file photo by Stephany. Click photo for larger image.

As government buffalo harassment operations are drawing to a close for this year, BFC is now shifting our field focus to outreach, spreading the word to save these herds. Our summer tabling season has begun, with volunteers set up at Tower Falls inside Yellowstone National Park, talking to visitors and sharing the buffalo's story, raising awareness and building a stronger advocacy for our shaggy friends. BFC will also be tabling in Grand Teton National Park, so if you are traveling in the Greater Yellowstone region this summer be sure to visit our table!

Almost ready for mailing! Be sure to let us know if your address has changed in the last year, if you'd like to be added to our mailing list, or if you can help distribute our newsletters around your community! Contact BFC's Executive Director Dan Brister. Special thanks to Cindy for all her hard work on this issue!

Our 2010-2011 Print Newsletter is currently being printed and we will soon be mailing them to our supporters! Loaded with a recap of the season's events, plus photos, updates, and information on ways you can help the buffalo, we hope you will enjoy this latest issue. Newsletters are a great resource for those of you who have been with us for years and for those joining the cause for the first time. Please let us know if your mailing address has changed, or send us your mailing address if you would like to begin receiving our annual print newsletter. Also, we will have plenty of copies available for you to hand out in your community, so if you can help us get the word out, let us know how many you'd like and where to send them.

BFC is everyone, everywhere who cares about the last wild buffalo. Thank you for being with us for the buffalo, spreading the word to save these sacred herds!

Roam Free!!

* Park Service Responds to Congressional Letter

You may recall that BFC helped members of Congress with a letter addressing the Park Service's role in wild bison slaughter and harassment. Yellowstone Superintendent Dan Wenk finally responded last week with a letter to the Representatives that was written in a condescending tone as if the members of Congress lacked a basic understanding of the issue. Particularly disturbing was Wenk's section related to Tribal involvement. Wenk's response mentions the Park's consultation with tribes about the transfer of captured and quarantined buffalo to tribal lands, while skirting the real issue raised in the Congressional letter: tribal involvement in the development and implementation of a management plan that respects wild bison and the interests of First Nations buffalo cultures.

Please visit our home page (and scroll down a bit) to read Yellowstone's response to Congress. After you read this letter, we encourage you to contact your members of Congress, mentioning the letter, and urge them to bring an end to the Interagency Bison Management Plan and re-direct federal funding towards habitat-based solutions for wild buffalo. If your members of Congress are unfamiliar with this issue, urge them to contact Buffalo Field Campaign.

* Thanks for visiting BFC!

As buffalo take up residence in their summer ranges, people from all over the country are stopping in to visit Buffalo Field Campaign and learn more about what we do to protect America's last wild buffalo. Over 50 Eastern Mennonite School kids from Harrisonburg, Virginia touring in their Discovery bus, and over 25 teachers from Indiana State University, Kennesaw State University, and University of Illinois met with our volunteers and coordinators to talk buffalo. Thank you educators and youth for caring about the buffalo and visiting BFC to learn how you can get involved to protect our heritage of wild buffalo.

* Rise of the Buffalo: Artist Donates Proceeds of Buffalo Song to BFC

Singer-songwriter Wendy Allyn's latest album, "The Wind and the Weeds" contains a powerful and moving song of inspiration: Rise of the Buffalo. As buffalo advocates from Eco Gear put it, "it's the new marching song for buffalo everywhere!"

This week Wendy said, "I would love to donate some funds to this Amazing cause for it's one that I share, one that I believe in with my whole heart! I pledge to donate all funds from the downloads of my song "Rise of the Buffalo" through this summer, June - August, to Buffalo Field Campaign!"

Please visit Wendy's website, check out her amazing music, and download "Rise of the Buffalo" to support Wendy's music and the work of Buffalo Field Campaign. Thank you so much Wendy! We love the song! Thank you for believing in our work for the mighty buffalo!


BFC file photo by Darrell Geist.

1. Contact Gallatin National Forest Supervisor Mary Erickson and ask her how, after allowing the state of Montana to chase wild buffalo off the National Forest, she is fulfilling the Forest Service's legal mandate to provide habitat for viable populations of native wild buffalo, and why she allows wild bison to be forced off of public lands habitat where there are never any cattle. TAKE ACTION!

2. Contact Yellowstone Superintendent Dan Wenk and USDA APHIS Western Regional Director Brian McCluskey and tell them that it is not acceptable for wild buffalo, which are ecologically extinct, to be surrendered without public notice or input for experiments with chemical sterilization. TAKE ACTION! EMAIL Yellowstone Superintendent Dan Wenk and APHIS Regional Director Brian McCluskey

3. Write Letters to the Editor in support of protecting America's last wild buffalo. TAKE ACTION!

4. Buffalo Field Campaign is dependent upon contributions from our supporters for our survival. Please make a donation of whatever amount you can afford and ensure that we remain the buffalo's most powerful voice in the field and in the policy arena.

Thank You! Spread the word to save these herds! Please share these action links on FaceBook, blogs, etc.

* By the Numbers

AMERICAN BUFFALO ELIMINATED from the last wild population in the U.S. The last wild population is currently estimated at fewer than 3,600 individual buffalo.

2010-2011 Total Buffalo Killed: 227

2010-2011 Government Capture: 770
2010-2011 Government Slaughter: 0
2010-2011 Held for Government Experiment: 30
2010-2011 Died In Government Trap: 3
2010-2011 Miscarriage in Government Trap: 1
2010-2011 State & Treaty Hunts: 211
2010-2011 Quarantine: 0
2010-2011 Shot by Agents: 3
2010-2011: Killed by Angry Residents: 2
2010-2011 Highway Mortality: 10

2009-2010 Total: 7
2008-2009 Total: 22
2007-2008 Total: 1,631

* Total Since 2000: 3,970*

*includes lethal government action, trap-related fatalities, quarantine, hunts, highway mortality

* Last Words ~ Buffalo Soldiers

Planet Jackson Hole reporter Benjamin Bombard joined BFC on the front lines during the first week of June, when major hazing operations near West Yellowstone began. It's hard to capture the essence of hazing in words, and the tragedy that befalls the buffalo during such times, but Benjamin bore witness himself, and as his story Buffalo Soldiers demonstrates, got a sense of the injustice visited upon the buffalo.

Here's his story

Do you have submissions for Last Words? Send them to Stephany. Thank you for all the poems, songs, quotes, and stories you have been sending; you'll see them here!

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Buffalo Field Campaign
P.O. Box 957
West Yellowstone, MT 59758
BFC is the only group working in the field every day in defense of the last wild buffalo population in the U.S.

Buffalo Field Campaign West Yellowstone Montana
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