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#6120075 - 01/09/18 09:48 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Yes sir]
Caribou Offline
trapper

Registered: 08/29/13
Posts: 104
Loc: AK, Northwest Arctic Borough
Originally Posted By: Yes sir
Do the wolves up there not get to a high enough population that they can directly reduce the numbers of a healthy caribou herd?


No. Theres alot of Caribou, alot of Wolves and alot of room.

Wolves will finish what a mid winter rain started, and a ''healthy'' Caribou herd last week is now slow, hungry weak and on the move. Thats when Wolves can make dents in a Caribou population......and if its an already struggling population, Im sure they could decimate and scatter those.....so the Wolf predation isnt on a 'healthy' herd, itself .


Just the lack or fences and roads, citys or farms, diverted rivers means its natural state is nearly undisturbed and no ''Man'agment has knocked it out of balance.
The migrations are intact and the habitat is intact.
This is kind of unique in the world now, as human populations have changed most things.

When mid winters rains come and destroy the habitat, the Wolves eat alot at the time, but its effects are short lived, except the loss in population. 4-5 times in 10 years can wipe out any growth a herd may experience. Also, Caribou 'remember', and avoid the areas, which makes predicting any migration unpredictable.

This fall we were above freezing until almost November when late September used to be our ''Freeze up'', and our Caribou stopped their southern migration and rutted out in the Brooks range to our north, and didnt come south at all until our month long freeky warm up/late fall cooled enough that they resumed the walk.

Old timers here will say ''If there lots of Wolves, hunt them.....if theres lots of Caribou, hunt them, they go together.'' Meaning that one or the other, if not both, can be found in the same areas, and are symbiotic.


Edited by Caribou (01/09/18 09:56 PM)
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#6120096 - 01/09/18 10:20 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
white17 Offline

"General (Mr.Sunshine) Washington"

Registered: 03/17/07
Posts: 24397
Loc: McGrath, AK
I have to agree with Caribou and Dirt.

Caribou populations are their own worst enemy. In 1991 I sat in my cabin watching approximately 80,000 caribou migrate past my door. It was the population peak for that herd. I haven't seen another caribou in that area since then !

The herds get so large that what they don't eat, they trample because of their numbers. The crashes of caribou herds are legendary.

In the case of the herd you guys are talking about...apparently there were 700 caribou at one point on an island of only 102 square miles. I'm no range scientist but that sounds incredibly dense to me. I can easily believe that habitat destruction by the caribou themselves could be a contributing factor.

Sure the wolves have some responsibility here. The other problem is that the wolves can switch to other prey like beaver. Especially in the simmer. The other thing is, if the wolves got there on a temporary ice bridge, it may be difficult for them to disperse as the pack grows or the prey base shrinks.

Sounds to me like both the wolves and the caribou need management rather than wiping out either of them. I would think that would be an easy decision.
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#6120109 - 01/09/18 10:50 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
swedeole Offline
trapper

Registered: 04/18/17
Posts: 106
Loc: Bemidji, MN
Well said White.

Managing both would be the best idea.

Myself, I like wolves, and I like to see high numbers. The more the better to get rid of all these stupid deer. When the dam white-tail deer eat my alfalfa fields down to the dirt all fall, browse my apples and raspberries to nubs, eat every terminal bud off every white, red and jackpine I plant, dig up all my carrots and spread deer ticks all over the country, I wish we had a lot more wolves!

And when my between my wife and I we've had 18 or 19 vehicle-deer collisions that have cost me many thousands of dollars too!

Deer are a menace and a detriment to our forest.

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#6120117 - 01/09/18 11:01 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
white17 Offline

"General (Mr.Sunshine) Washington"

Registered: 03/17/07
Posts: 24397
Loc: McGrath, AK
Here's a bit of info about 5 herds in a portion of this state. Notice that wolves are never mentioned as part of the problem.


http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=wildlifenews.view_article&articles_id=309

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#6120130 - 01/09/18 11:41 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
J.Morse Offline
trapper

Registered: 05/31/13
Posts: 2938
Loc: Northern Michigan
The Boreal Woodland Caribou is, compared to the arctic and sub-arctic "Barren Ground Caribou", nearly a sedentary beast, and even though they move more than most deer and moose, they are pikers when it comes to long distance shifts when stacked up to the more northerly Caribou. Studies in Ontario show that the Caribou purposely spend most of their time singly or in small herds in areas where they are less likely to run across a wolf. How they know those areas is beyond me. Wolf predation in Woodland Caribou is apparently only a big problem when the Big Bad Wolf has a captive audience......such as when they are stuck on an island out away from other islands where they can't swim to escape the wolves.......sorta like Michipicoten!
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#6120142 - 01/10/18 12:32 AM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
Caribou Offline
trapper

Registered: 08/29/13
Posts: 104
Loc: AK, Northwest Arctic Borough
Brown Bears wreak havoc on WACH newborn calves and the Caribou respond with mass birthing, basicly glutting the available food for the bears. They ambush adult Caribou in the river side willows at river crossings.
Eagles also swoop down and attack with puncture wounds killing calfs in some pretty high numbers.
Wolves get the slow ones,Men usually pick out the best to catch.
Lean times for cows means small babys or none at all. A few years of such and numbers dip noticeably
Then theres habitat loss, sickness and accidents......

Theres alot of constant ecological and hunting pressure on these animals.






Edited by Caribou (01/10/18 12:48 AM)
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#6120414 - 01/10/18 11:19 AM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: swedeole]
Trapper7 Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/27/06
Posts: 5469
Loc: MN, Land of 10,000 Lakes
Originally Posted By: swedeole
Well said White.

Managing both would be the best idea.

Myself, I like wolves, and I like to see high numbers. The more the better to get rid of all these stupid deer. When the dam white-tail deer eat my alfalfa fields down to the dirt all fall, browse my apples and raspberries to nubs, eat every terminal bud off every white, red and jackpine I plant, dig up all my carrots and spread deer ticks all over the country, I wish we had a lot more wolves!

And when my between my wife and I we've had 18 or 19 vehicle-deer collisions that have cost me many thousands of dollars too!

Deer are a menace and a detriment to our forest.


Tell that to the farmer who lost 17 sheep to wolves or the one who has lost new born calves to wolves. There has been so many depredation claims in MN, they ran out of money. I owned 120 acres north of Floodwood. A family down the road from my place had to stop raising sheep because of the wolf population explosion. Most of the farmers in that area quit trying to raise livestock because of this.
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#6120421 - 01/10/18 11:28 AM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Dean Chapel]
Drake Haskins Offline
trapper

Registered: 11/28/17
Posts: 25
Loc: Sandpoint, ID
Its is true but wolves are not the main problem up here in idaho for caribou wolves go after the elk most, and they are not good a wolf up here is deadly not just killing the sick but wiping out everything in its path. caribou have always been in a very low population. my dad and I know some what how aggressive they are cause one year in our favorit huckle berry patch, we were sitting on the next ridge over from it watchin a herd of 13 elk, to far to shoot, they started to panick and running down the old road and a pack of 18 wolves droped 7 of them elk, it wasnt good so we just started cracking off roands over there.

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#6120423 - 01/10/18 11:30 AM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Marty]
Drake Haskins Offline
trapper

Registered: 11/28/17
Posts: 25
Loc: Sandpoint, ID
i know right, they were exterminated for a reason.

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#6120427 - 01/10/18 11:33 AM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
white17 Offline

"General (Mr.Sunshine) Washington"

Registered: 03/17/07
Posts: 24397
Loc: McGrath, AK
Pardon me but..........


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#6120436 - 01/10/18 11:47 AM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
Dirt Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/01/10
Posts: 3463
Loc: Armpit, ak
Speaking of B.S. Can anybody interpret this?

"The ministry takes an adaptive management approach and is actively assessing management actions including the potential need for and feasibility of wildlife community management methods."
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#6120439 - 01/10/18 11:50 AM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
RdFx Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4238
Loc: Wisconsin
A very interesting book called ALASKAS WOLF MAN, Frank Glazer. The natives were awed by this man. Read the stories of his exploits with wolves, hunting, trapping. I believe his experiences told about wolves in this book are true.. white17 correct me if im wrong.

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#6120442 - 01/10/18 11:58 AM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
white17 Offline

"General (Mr.Sunshine) Washington"

Registered: 03/17/07
Posts: 24397
Loc: McGrath, AK
laugh I have to admit that I never knew Frank but have read the book several times. It's a good read and, in my opinion, illustrates just how tough and motivated people were during that time.

I think there is a lot of validity in Frank's stories but I don't think I'd buy all of it. Rearden, the author, may have used a bit of license in writing the book.


The ONE person on this forum who can shed the best information on this subject, is Gulo.

Hopefully he will weigh in on the subject.


Do wolves have a detrimental affect on some people and individual critters ?? Absolutely.

Is there a beneficial aspect to their presence ? I think so.

Do we need to manage them ? Absolutely, IMO
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#6120448 - 01/10/18 12:04 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
RdFx Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4238
Loc: Wisconsin
Thanks white17 , agree on Gulo

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#6120455 - 01/10/18 12:18 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
ToTheWoods Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/29/13
Posts: 580
Loc: St. Croix County, Wisconsin
18 dogs in one pack??? not an expert in pack sizes but that seems like numbers for 4 packs. Then to take down 7 animals as you watch.... Were you hovering along with them on your magic carpet?

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#6120457 - 01/10/18 12:21 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
white17 Offline

"General (Mr.Sunshine) Washington"

Registered: 03/17/07
Posts: 24397
Loc: McGrath, AK
To be fair........I have seen bigger packs than that. It is not usual though. And I would be very surprised to see a group that large in ID. Gulo can give us the straight poop on these issues.
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#6120459 - 01/10/18 12:24 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
Malukchuk Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 1972
Loc: western alaska
The WACH population is up from a year ago, latest survey shows the population over 250K
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#6120462 - 01/10/18 12:25 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
ToTheWoods Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/29/13
Posts: 580
Loc: St. Croix County, Wisconsin
I was just going off the pack sizes we have here in Wisconsin. Most packs are 3-5 dogs. I know that they are some that are larger but from what I have read about pack sizes in the Yellowstone area the largest is 9 dogs give or take year to year

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#6120472 - 01/10/18 12:35 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
white17 Offline

"General (Mr.Sunshine) Washington"

Registered: 03/17/07
Posts: 24397
Loc: McGrath, AK
Sure I understand that. That is more rational and pretty much agrees with what I have seen over the years. Lots of variables in pack size. I would think the main things are prey availability, room for dispersal, size of the prey, size of home range, etc.
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#6120491 - 01/10/18 12:57 PM Re: Wolves Wiping Out Caribou [Re: Tweed]
Trapper7 Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/27/06
Posts: 5469
Loc: MN, Land of 10,000 Lakes
Remember the AR lady who spoke up when the judge on the east coast put wolves back on the endangered species list? She claimed that it was good that the wolf population was up and were killing so many deer because of all the pollution the deer were causing by pooping in the woods. Guess she didn't think wolves pooped their too. crazy
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