* Update from the Field
This powerful image is more profound than words. Painting by the talented Judith Dragonette, used with permission. Click image for larger view.
On July 1, the cusp of the Independence Day weekend, the Montana Department of Livestock (DOL) shot and killed a wild American bull buffalo. The bull, the living embodiment of this country's untamed spirit, was killed for walking onto the hobby ranch of the wealthy Povah family. Mr. Povah had complained that the buffalo was "threatening my fence." The DOL agent that shot him made no attempt to move the bull off the private property and onto the adjacent Gallatin National Forest. The bull's carcass was taken to the dump and a bear biologist reportedly obtained it for use in baiting grizzly bears in Yellowstone. Yellowstone officials report that the bull's head was taken to Yellowstone National Park to "the Mammoth Hot Springs area for storage in a communal freezer utilized for preserving wildlife specimens." It doesn't matter that the DOL agent had 'the authority' to kill the bull then and there, he could have chosen to make an attempt to move the buffalo off of private property, preventing its death; but that is not in the nature of the DOL. They are in the shoot and slaughter business. The DOL was more than ready to kill a buffalo, as if in spiteful response to the release of 800 buffalo this spring. Take a moment to email DOL/Montana State Vet Marty Zaluski and tell the DOL how you feel.
BFC volunteers Liz and Tony spread the word inside Yellowstone. BFC file photo by BFC volunteer Alex Gloster. Click photo for larger image.
Visitors to Yellowstone National Park who visit BFC's information table at Tower Falls are hearing of this tragic and unnecessary incident, and about all the unjust treatment of America's last wild buffalo, along with the positive solutions we can all embrace. BFC volunteers have been engaging visitors to Yellowstone National Park and our outreach efforts are going great. According to Tony Reed, BFC's Summer Coordinator, "We are getting tons of positive feedback. Two days ago a rancher from Virginia dropped 50 bucks in the donation jar and told us to keep up the great work and thanked us for being here!"
BFC's 2011 print newsletter is ready for you! Loaded with photos and information these newsletters are a great outreach tool and have something in them for everyone, whether you've been with us for a while or are new to the issue. Click image for larger view and contact us for more copies.
You can also help us spread the word to help save these herds with BFC's 2011 Newsletter! Hot off the press, if you are on our mailing list you should be getting yours in the mail within the next two weeks. And we have plenty of copies so we can send you some to hand out to friends and place in shops, coffee houses, and other high visibility areas of your community. If you'd like to be added to our mailing list or receive multiple copies of our print newsletter, please contact Elizabeth.
* BFC's Wild Bison 2012 Calendar Now Available
These 2012 calendars are stunning! Celebrate wild buffalo 365 days a year by ordering yours today!
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. ORDER RIGHT NOW!
* TAKE ACTION!
Be like the bull bison during the rut, and take these agencies head on! This awesome image is by the highly talented Sandy Sisti who has generously donated the use of many of her outstanding photos to BFC, some of which are featured in both BFC's Wild Bison 2011 and 2012 calendars. Click photo for larger image.
1. Contact Gallatin National Forest Supervisor Mary Erickson and ask why there are no wild buffalo on Gallatin National Forest if 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 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 Superintendent Wenk and APHIS Director 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
One of America's last wild buffalo. Photo by Ric Kessler, another talented photographer featured in our Wild Bison 2012 calendar. Click photo for larger image.
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. Wild bison are ecologically extinct throughout their native range.
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: 4
2010-2011: Killed by Angry Residents: 2
2010-2011 Highway Mortality: 11
2009-2010 Total: 7
2008-2009 Total: 22
2007-2008 Total: 1,631
* Total Since 2000: 3,972*
*includes lethal government action, trap-related fatalities, quarantine, hunts, highway mortality
* Last Words ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.
"Never, never be afraid to do what's right, especially if the well-being of a person or animal is at stake. Society's punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way."
~Martin Luther King, Jr
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!