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           Weekly Update from the Field August 11, 2016
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Threats to Buffalo, and Now Elk, Increase in Yellowstone Country‏
* Threats to Buffalo, and Now Elk, Increase in Yellowstone Country
* Help BFC Complete our Garage and Workshop so we can Maintain and Repair our own Vehicles!
* Join BFC for Wood Cut Week, September 5 - 9, 2016
* Wild Bison 2017 Calendars - Get Yours Today, Retail or Wholesale!
* Help Spread the Word! Distribute BFC's 2016-2017 Newsletter!
* TAKE ACTION! Help BFC Protect Wild Buffalo
* By the Numbers
* Last Words ~ Lierre Keith

* Threats to Buffalo, and Now Elk, Increase in Yellowstone Country

Buffalo Field Campaign photo by Stephany. Click for larger image.

Last week’s Interagency Bison Management Plan (IBMP) meeting did not bring good news for the national mammal. State, federal, and tribal governments lamented over how they were unable to kill as many buffalo as they wanted to, blaming this on the fact that they delayed capturing until later in the winter, which they did to increase hunting opportunities. The hunters were racing against the trap, trying to kill as many buffalo as they could before it opened. This caused unethical and dangerous hunting practices, with hunters swarming Yellowstone’s northern boundary waiting for buffalo to take a step out of the Park, and making it impossible for buffalo to migrate through this bottleneck to access larger areas of habitat in the Gardiner Basin. Hunting and capture-for-slaughter are being used to destroy the world’s most important buffalo herds exclusively to cater to Montana's livestock industry and rancher intolerance. None of the IBMP representatives put forth recommendations to stop the destruction of our national mammal, the sacred buffalo, for the sake of invasive and destructive cattle. They didn't recommend more buffalo on a larger landscape. They didn't suggest that ranchers learn to co-exist with the native wildlife who were here thousands of years before them. What the IBMP agencies did recommend is opening Yellowstone’s Stephens Creek trap earlier this year, so they can kill more buffalo, sooner.

Buffalo Field Campaign photo by Stephany. Click for larger image.

Livestock interests are honing in on elk as well. Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks is putting forth a damning proposal to prevent elk from roaming freely in southwest Montana. This proposal was sparked by information gathered from collared elk migrating north into Montana from Wyoming’s elk feedlots — artificial feeding grounds set up for the sole benefit of livestock interests, which ironically, causes unnatural concentrations of elk and therefore increases brucellosis transmissions between elk. The proposal includes more fencing in migration corridors, increased hunting, hazing elk away from cattle, and even hazing elk herds away from other elk herds — an impossibly foolish idea. The Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks Commission discussed this proposal today. BFC attended and documented the meeting, and we listened to the live stream. From what we heard, the only support for this proposal is from the Montana Department of Livestock and the cattle ranching industry. During the meeting, the Commission voted to remove the language about hazing elk away from other elk, and the amended proposal will be out for pubic comment soon. We will share more information when available.

Aside from the proposal itself, the really frustrating thing is that numerous hunting and conservation groups spoke out against the proposal, using the exact same arguments we use against hazing and slaughtering of the buffalo — yet, except for a small few, most of these groups remain silent when it comes to the fate of wild bison.

Buffalo Field Campaign photo by Stephany. Click for larger image.

As we know, the problem is not brucellosis, wild elk, or wild buffalo. The problem is livestock. Yet all these wildlife “management” decisions are based on the premise that livestock grazing in the West is a given, that it trumps all else, and that wildlife must move over or pay the price. There are very few of us who challenge the hegemony of this destructive industry. Cattle are not native to the American West and, rather than continue down the dead-end, wasteful, destructive path of harassing and killing more migratory elk and buffalo (or wolves, grizzly bears, prairie dogs, etc.) to benefit livestock, we need to question the entitlement, intolerance, and power of the livestock industry. Remove the cattle, remove the problem. For the earth, it’s a good place to start.

Wild is the Way ~ Roam Free!
~ Stephany

* Help BFC Complete our Garage and Workshop so we can Maintain and Repair our own Vehicles!

We have been incredibly busy this summer. In addition to staffing our information table inside Yellowstone National Park and gathering the firewood to keep our volunteers warm through some of the coldest weather in the United States, we have been working tirelessly to build a garage at our West Yellowstone headquarters.

We were gifted with a professional vehicle lift which will enable us to be more self sufficient and save thousands of dollars a year on vehicle repairs. To take advantage of this gift we needed a building where we could set it up and have a warm place for our mechanics to work on patrol vehicles and other projects.

The building is now framed and close to being done but we have overrun our budget and need help to complete the project. Specifically, we will need some fifty sheets of plywood, insulation for the roof and walls, 1x4 inch wood strips, and some fasteners. All told, we are needing to raise approximately $4000 for the supplies to complete the garage.

Please help us wrap up this important project with a tax-deductible contribution today!

We also have an Amazon wishlist where you can purchase specific items that will enable us to more efficiently and effectively protect the buffalo.

Thank you for your support of our most important work for America's last wild buffalo!

With the Buffalo,
Mike Mease

* Join BFC for Wood Cut Week, September 5 - 9, 2016

Join BFC for our annual Wood Cut Week, September 5 - 9. Please join us at our headquarters near West Yellowstone as we haul, cut, and stack the wood that will keep our field volunteers warm this winter. We will provide a place to stay and tasty meals.

Please email or call Mike, mease@wildrockies.org or (406) 646-0070 if you are interested in helping.

* Wild Bison 2017 Calendar: Get Yours Today, Retail or Wholesale!

Celebrate wild buffalo every day of the year with our seventh annual Wild Bison of Yellowstone Country calendar.

This year's edition is the most wonderful exploration yet of this country’s largest land mammal. Featuring stunning photos from generous professional photographers and BFC patrols, our 2017 calendar also features incredible artwork, interesting facts, and beautiful poetry and quotes.

All proceeds from the calendar go directly to BFC’s front lines work defending and protecting America’s last wild buffalo. Support our work to help these gentle giants as you celebrate wild buffalo every day!

Fall in love with the buffalo and strengthen your resolve to help protect them! ORDER HERE or click the photo below!

2017 Calendars Now Available at Wholesale Prices!

For the first time, we are offering calendars at wholesale prices to those of you who want to purchase in bulk. Please help us help the buffalo and help yourself in the process!

Do you own a small business? Does your friend, or neighbor or family member? Maybe you are part of another organization that needs some help fundraising? We want to offer you the opportunity to help us help the buffalo while also helping yourself by offering our 2017 calendar at the wholesale price to those who want to help us spread the word to protect the herds!

Minimum order is 10 calendars for $70 plus $13.45 priority S&H ($83.45 total). The calendars sell retail for $12.95 so this deal would make you or your organization almost $50! But the more you order the better it gets!

20 calendars for $120 plus $13.45 priority S&H ($133.45 total) can result in a profit of $125.55
30 calendars for $180 plus $13.45 priority S&H ($193.45 total) can result in a profit of $195.05
40 calendars for $240 plus $13.45 priority S&H ($253.45 total) can result in a profit of $264.55

View our wholesale sheet HERE.

Please send your check or money order, the number of calendars you want to order, and your USPS shipping address to:

Buffalo Field Campaign
PO Box 957
West Yellowstone, MT 59758

If you are interested in ordering more than 40 please contact Tara at 406-646-0070 or buffalo@wildrockies.org and she will figure out the shipping costs!

As always, we are deeply grateful for all your help!

* Help Spread the Word! Distribute BFC's 2016-2017 Newsletter

If you're on our mailing list, you'll be receiving our latest print newsletter in the next few weeks. If you're not, and would like us to send you one or more (for distribution in your community) please let us know. If your address has changed, or if you are new and would like to be added to our mailing list, please contact Tara at buffalo@wildrockies.org.

We need your help in spreading the word to save the wild buffalo herds! If you would like us to send you a stack of newsletters to place around your community, Tara can help you. Shipping can be costly, so please let Tara know an exact number that you are able to distribute and she will happily get them to you ASAP!

* TAKE ACTION! Endless Pressure, Endlessly Applied

1. One of the most important things that can help mitigate buffalo-vehicle collisions is the implementation of safe passage infrastructure, which involves constructing bridges or underpasses that buffalo and other wildlife can use to cross the dangerous road without ever having to step foot on the asphalt. Examples of the enormous success safe passage has for wildlife are growing in the U.S., Canada, and other countries around the world. What better place for wildlife safe passage than on the edge of Yellowstone National Park? Please join us in urging the state of Montana to provide wildlife safe passage in this key migration corridor.

2. Montana Governor Steve Bullock needs to feel the pressure from everyone who cares about wild, migratory buffalo, enough pressure that he has no other choice but to help repeal MCA 81-2-120, the law that is driving the nefarious actions against America's last wild buffalo. Please contact Governor Bullock today, and everyday, demanding he change the status quo for wild bison in Montana by repealing MCA 81-2-120 and rejecting the government's alternatives in the newly proposed Montana-Yellowstone Bison Management Plan.

3. Help change the status quo for wild buffalo by urging your members of Congress to support BFC’s alternative to “Manage Wild Bison Like Wild Elk in Montana."


4. Submit Letters to the Editor in support of BFC's alternative to “Manage Wild Bison Like Wild Elk in Montana,” the only alternative that respects wild buffalo and their right to roam their home

* By the Numbers

The last wild, migratory buffalo populations are currently estimated at fewer than 4,300 individual animals, living in and around Yellowstone National Park. Wild, migratory bison are ecologically extinct throughout their native range in North America.

Total Buffalo Killed: 603
Government Capture: 150
Held for Quarantine or Slaughter: 49
Buffalo Released from Capture:
Government Slaughter:
Tribal - ITBC, CSKT, & Sho-Ban Slaughter: 101
Died in Government Trap:
Died in Government Research Facility**:
Miscarriage in Government Trap:
State Hunt: 28
State “Damage" Hunts:
Treaty Hunts: 349
Unknown Hunts: 1
Wounded by Hunters & Shot by FWP/NPS or Died in Park: 51
Poached in Yellowstone:
Sent to Quarantine:
Sent to APHIS Research Facility:
Shot by Agents:
Shot by Landowner:
Shot by Idaho:
Highway Mortality: 16
Cause of Death Unknown:
Elk shot under treaty right: 55

Total Killed in Previous Years*
2014-2015: 740
2013-2014: 653
2012-2013: 261
2011-2012: 33
2010-2011: 227
2009-2010: 7
2008-2009: 22
2007-2008: 1,631
Total Killed Since 2000: 6,237

* Last Words of Buffalo Inspiration ~ Lierre Keith

“The task of an activist is not to navigate around systems of oppression with as much personal integrity as possible. It’s to bring those systems down.”

~ Lierre Keith, Deep Green Resistance

Please keep sending quotes, poems and other words of buffalo wisdom. 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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