* One Day Left to Support BFC with a 2010 Tax Deductible Contribution
Young buffalo hunker down and take a respite from grazing. BFC file photo by Stephany.
We are very grateful for the many supporters who have generously donated in response to our recent calls for support. Your contributions fuel Buffalo Field Campaign's every effort, making us the bison's most effective advocate in the field and on the policy front. The bulk of our budget is contributed not by large foundations or corporations but by people like you, who care enough about the future of wild buffalo to support BFC with your hard-earned money. So many of you include notes with your donations saying you wish you could do more. Please know that your contributions, of whatever form or amount, sustain Buffalo Field Campaign. Our greatest strength has always been in the grassroots nature of our support base and the willingness of supporters, volunteers, coordinators, and board members to give so much of themselves for the buffalo. Thank you.
This winter has the potential to be very bad for America's last wild bison. More than thirty have already been shot by hunters, dozens have been repeatedly chased by Park wranglers along Yellowstone's northern boundary, and government representatives continue to stand behind a failed management plan under which they have slaughtered nearly 4,000 buffalo in the past decade. With heavy snow blanketing their high elevation habitat inside Yellowstone and a long winter just beginning, many buffalo are on the move toward Montana. When the mass migration occurs the herds will be met with guns, traps, trips to slaughterhouses, helicopters, and other forms of heavy-handed intolerance. As we have for the past 14 winters, Buffalo Field Campaign patrols will be here through it all, documenting and protecting the bison, sharing their story, and working to protect them. Please help us.
To those of you who haven't donated recently, we humbly ask you to make a contribution right now. A strong year-end showing will enable us to enter 2011 on solid footing with our field volunteers well fed, trained, and equipped. Your support will also insure that we carry out our ongoing legal and legislative efforts to protect the buffalo to maximum effect. Donate online through the button below or send a check to Buffalo Field Campaign, PO Box 957, West Yellowstone, MT 59758.
For the Buffalo!
* Update from the Field
Here on the Yellowstone boundary winter is bearing down hard with temperatures well below zero and snow piling up fast. Buffalo, pulled by instinct and hunger to lower elevations surrounding the Park, find their ancient migratory routes obstructed as people on horseback close in on them from one direction while hunters with loaded rifles await them on the other. Since last week's Update the National Park Service has conducted three separate hazing operations near Gardiner, and hunters have shot one buffalo there. In the West Yellowstone area six buffalo were shot by hunters this week with the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, bringing the total killed in this year's hunt to 34.
My name is Tony. I’m a first year volunteer with the campaign. About a month and a half ago I came to West Yellowstone to devote seven months of this year to doing what I can to help one the most persecuted and mistreated wild animals in this hemisphere, the wild buffalo. After reading a few books about buffalo and much discussion with a past BFC volunteer, I thought I was ready to raise awareness about the issues surrounding this majestic creature. When I arrived in West Yellowstone I was welcomed graciously and am learning every day how Buffalo Field Campaign plays such a vital role in being the public’s eyes and ears when it comes to the buffalo. Our patrols are with the buffalo to document all actions taken against them by the mismanagement imposed by state and federal agencies. Spending almost everyday with buffalo has been the most incredible experience in my life. I’m glad I still have more than five months left with the buffalo but at the same time I’m afraid for them because I know what will happen this spring. I am incredulous at what these agencies do to these animals while we are watching yet I shudder to imagine what they would do if we weren’t.
With the Buffalo,
* Did You Get to See BFC on Headline News? Watch here!
Buffalo Field Campaign's Mike Mease appeared on CNN's Headline News, ISSUES With Jane Velez-Mitchell, on December 23. The piece was intense, the footage tells the truth, and Mike was a powerful spokesman for the buffalo! If you haven't seen it or would like to watch again, just click here! Please consider emailing Jane Velez-Mitchell to thank her for bringing on BFC and encourage her to keep this issue in the spotlight!
* TAKE ACTION: New Feature! Letters to the Editor
Help tell the buffalo's story in your community, state or region with a Letter to the Editor. The opinion section is the most widely read section of newspapers and BFC has made it really easy for you to send in Letters to the Editor. Follow the easy instructions, personalize the provided sample letter, and spread the word to save these herds! As a special gift to you we will send you a FREE BFC T-SHIRT when your buffalo-friendly Letter to the Editor is printed! Just send us a copy of the printed letter along with your T-shirt size and mailing address.
Visit our NEW Letters to the Editor page and write on for the buffalo today and every day! If you need assistance or have questions about Letters to the Editor, please email Stephany.
* Last Words
"I want fifty-million buffalo back on the Plains!"
~ Rosalie Little Thunder, Lakota elder and co-founder of BFC. From a conversation during February 2007, with the Nez Perce and BFC.
Do you have submissions for Last Words? Send them to bfc-media"at"wildrockies.org. Thank you all for the poems, quotes, songs and stories you have been sending; you'll see them here!
* By the Numbers
AMERICAN BUFFALO ELIMINATED from the last wild population in the U.S. Population estimated at fewer than 3,900.
2010-2011 Total: 34
2010-2011 Government Slaughter: 0
2010-2011 State & Treaty Hunts: 34
2010-2011 Quarantine: 0
2010-2011 Shot by Agents: 0
2010-2011 Highway Mortality: 0
2009-2010 Total: 7
2008-2009 Total: 22
2007-2008 Total: 1,631
Total Since 2000: 3,743*
*includes lethal government action, quarantine, hunts, highway mortality