Michigan Sportsman Forum banner

What do you think should be done with the wolves in the UP?

  • I deer hunt in the UP and think wolf numbers should be brought down.

    Votes: 92 41.1%
  • I deer hunt in the UP and think wolf numbers should be allowed to increase.

    Votes: 33 14.7%
  • I don't deer hunt in the UP but still think wolf numbers need to be reduced.

    Votes: 58 25.9%
  • I don't deer hunt in the UP but still think wolf numbers wolf numbers should be allowed to increase.

    Votes: 27 12.1%
  • I don't care.

    Votes: 14 6.3%
1 - 20 of 171 Posts
Joined
·
10,812 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
It was recently reported that the DNR is currently investigating six recent wolf killings in the UP. With a large, growing population of wolves inhabiting the UP these days, it seems like UP residents and deer hunters are taking the law into their own hands and are killing wolves at an increasing rate each year. I know of several Yoopers that will shoot any wolf they see on sight; they are that irate about the high numbers of wolves in their hunting areas and the impact the animals are having on the deer herds. At this time, even though Michigan's wolves were recently reclassified from an endangered species, the only wolves that can be legally killed are ones that are killing livestock. What do you think about the UP wolf situation?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
478 Posts
From what I understand is that with the estimated wolf pack #'s at lets say X and the numbers of deer 1X would eat in relation to the entire population is somewhat small. Considering many of the deer taken are "not fit" in relation to survival of the fittest, I think the problem could lie within this theory. I notice many of the deer in the north are smaller and are more suseptable to disease not to mention the harder winters that they must survive through. Could one assume that the overall health of the deer population combined with much harsher living conditions in the northern part of the state leads to a increased perception of "population destruction by the Wolf"? I think the Wolf may be taking advantage of mother natures way of ensuring survival of the fittest. Of course these are all just assumptions and I don't know merely enough to hold a indepth conversation on this topic so if it is off base, forgive me I don't mean for it because I know you guys in the north part of the state are having serious problems with this issue.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
565 Posts
I would like to see the wolves get up to a huntable population, and if that means less deer, then so be it. I don't understand shooting all wolves on sight, because if the wolves make a big enough dent in the deer population, then their own numbers will crash.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35,628 Posts
quote by TS
it seems like UP residents and deer hunters are taking the law into their own hands
I usually don't openly disagree with member of this site. You could not be more wrong with the above statement.

These are poachers plain and simple

These poachers may or may not be residents or may or may not hunt deer but the common thread is they are poachers. Don't sugar coat the facts and use the term hunter, it gives all sportsman a bad name.

I really don't have any use for the wolves that roam my part of the UP. There is not a year that goes by that I don't see sign of them on my land. I don't have to like it but I can share my piece of paradice with them until there is a huntable wolf population. Then I will share some wall space with them so they can continue to hang around camp.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
12,818 Posts
I hope the wolves stay in the UP, as a deer hunter and livestock producer I have no desire to live with wolves.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,594 Posts
My favorite wolf is the stuffed one at the rest area on the north side of the bridge.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,964 Posts
2 years ago I observed a single wolf wander through my property in the UP. It was an awesome sight. Last year I saw a pack of 5 wolves wander through my property. It was an aw inspiring sight, to say the least, undescribable.

I hold no adverse opinions regarding the wolf populations of the UP. They have brought me more pleasure than harm. I'm sure that isn't the case for most UP residents that are voicing their negative opinions. So be it. On their behalf, I also wouldn't want to jeopardize the profitability of my beef or dairy farm for the sake of some wild dogs.

It would surprise you how many times, over the years of being a property owner in the UP, I have been instructed by local residents (hunters, farmers, etc.) on how to kill a wolf and/or discard of a radio collar. I still believe that this is simply more talk than action.

Youper, from my experiences, you stand with the minority of UP residents. Nothing wrong with that. I have yet to meet a UP resident in my area of the UP who supports a wolf population.

Saskatuan(sp) and Alberta Canada have strong wolf populations and some of the finest hunting for trophy whitetail bucks in North America.

I definately agree that the impact on the deer population in the UP is minimal as far as the wolves are concerned.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,099 Posts
I have said it many times before, and I'll say it again:

There is room for wolves in the UP. They have as much right to be here as any other native species.

I doubt they kill nowhere near as many deer as do the coyotes and the bears.

Having said that, people need to be reminded that this is not Disney: Wolves are predators. They are opportunistic killers. That does not make them innately bad; they are simply doing what they were designed to do, as their very survival depends on it.

As an example: Since June there has been a resident flock of wild turkey that comes into my yard nearly every day. Up until Nov 23, when the farmer next to me saw a trio of wolves in his pasture eyeballing cattle, the flock numbered 9.

Within a week, the turkeys dwindled to 3.

The thing that pisses-off alot of Yoopers is the arrogant, omnipotent, and dismissive attitude of the MDNR. For instance, a year or two ago their "official" wolf population #'s for Chippewa County was stated to be a whopping total of 13.

As someone that lives and hunts here, I can tell you that this figure is way off.

Based on livestock predation, sightings, wolf poachings, and the sheer size of Chipp Co., I would wager there are well over 50 wolves just in this county alone.

Wolves have their place, and there is room for them... providing that population levels are kept in check. But lets not twiddle our thumbs and wait until they get to be like the cormorants.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,812 Posts
I don't live in the UP, and I don't get up there to hunt very often, so I'm sure no expert on wolves, but I have, over the last decade, talked to an awful lot of people up there about wolves.

To most yoopers, their most valuable natural resource is their whitetailed deer.

Starting about a decade or so ago, with more hunters in the UP, and then, a couple of tough winters, the deer numbers up there began sliding...then we began the controversy over feeding in the winter, which undoubtedly stopped a lot of people from feeding, and we had the winter of 96. Then the TB thing kicked in and thousands of hunters who normally hunt in the TB area of the lower decided to go to the UP...and then we had another winter that might not have been the worst, but it wasn't easy, either...and so on and so on.

at the same time, the wolves appeared to be increasing...and on occasion, someone would find a deer kill...then a wolf made a big mistake and killed a sheep. And then a hunter's dog.

It just made sense for a lot of people in the UP to blame the wolf for their declining numbers of deer, and anything else that disappeared. Including wild turkeys-? Near the Soo? I've heard of this in the past, but never was able to find out where these birds came from?

Meantime, I still talk to people in the UP every day who still think that the wolf was introduced to the UP, that the MI DNR has a conspiracy (to do what no one's ever quite sure), that you can shoot a wolf that is attacking your livestock or dogs, etc. etc. Education is most definitely lacking...


If we look back at the history of the UP, there were far more wolves there at one time than deer, sad but true. Mother Nature's a tough critter herself, and it's very possible that she's slowly going around full circle, as much as she can with all the human intervention. And people in the UP don't want fewer deer and more wolves.

As for the farmers of the UP, I'm a huge champion of farming and firmly believe we wouldn't have the wildlife we have in the state of Michigan without the farmers-much less the ability to feed our people. But the fact is, the UP is a harsh climate for any type of farming, just weatherwise, and always has been. Add in wildlife that will eat his livestock, and here I'm talking about coyotes, too, as well as weasels and raccoons that will grab his chickens and smaller livestock, and you have to wonder what makes it worthwhile for them to stay at all. Any farmer who sticks it out up there for any reason at all has guts. You'd think they'd wonder if it's worth it...

:eek:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,099 Posts



Originally posted by Linda G.
Including wild turkeys-? Near the Soo? I've heard of this in the past, but never was able to find out where these birds came from?

:eek:
Wild turkeys come from eggs, Linda.

Even a backwoods UP hick like myself knows the answer to that......

:) :D :) :D :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,189 Posts
My in-law's have property in the Engadine area. I've been up there a few times. Never seen a wolf...but they are there. It seems to me most of the people that live in that area hate the wolves with a passion. "They're killing "OUR" deer", they say, as if they had any more right to that deer than the wolf does. The wolf and the deer can, and do co-exist in other parts of the world. Meaning...the wolves aren't going to destroy our deer hunting!

My own personal opinion is that I hope that wolves increase to the point where we can have a hunting season on them, and manage them just like any other game animal. Until then, I have no respect for anyone that shoots a wolf, becuase they are nothing more than a poacher.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,812 Posts
with that cat sitting there, how wild can they be? ;)

Maybe a "backwoods yooper" like yourself might tell me where those eggs came from-were they dropped from heaven, imported by the DNR in another conspiracy to inundate the folks of the Soo with "tame" wild turkeys to "feed the wolves", deported from Canada, or what??

:D

I have heard rumors of a handful of wild turkeys in and around the Soo for years, never really had them verified, tho...then I would talk to someone who ordered "wild turkeys" out of a box from McLarens hatchery in Iowa or somewhere that stayed with him until one day one of those "nefarious UP wolves ate them all"...

Seriously, if those are wild turkeys that have slowly, over the years, made their way across the UP from Dickinson, Delta, Menominee and the few parts of Alger and Marquette County they've migrated to, I would be very interested in knowing more...the Hiawatha Club bought some from the state of Iowa about 15 years ago, and we never heard anything more about those birds. It would be interesting to know how those birds got there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,220 Posts
Originally posted by Eastern Yooper
I have said it many times before, and I'll say it again:

There is room for wolves in the UP. They have as much right to be here as any other native species.

-snip
Wolves have their place, and there is room for them... providing that population levels are kept in check. But lets not twiddle our thumbs and wait until they get to be like the cormorants.
Total agreement here. Where I think the problem lies is the high pedestal that they have been placed on. They are protected to the point where they have little to no fear of man. Hopefully, with delisting, they will allow limited hunting of them. That in itself will help reduce the predation of livestock.

In addition, we need better management of our forest resources. The current situation is so pathetic, with deer concentrated in small areas, mainly around crops. Managing the forest better would spread out and increase the population of deer, and lessen the affects of hard winters and predators.

With Kool's contract about to end, we have a chance to get some changes for the good. However, with Granholm's appointment of a Sierra Club supporter to the NRC, I'm not particularly optimistic. In fact I fear the problem is only going to get worse.
 
Joined
·
10,812 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Like many UP hunters and residents, I also believe that the DNR has drastically underestimated Michigan's wolf population. I also believe that the number of wolves killed in the UP by poachers (Luv2hunteup I stand corrected) is much higher than most people realize. During the fall of 2002, we had a bunch of wolves around my camp. I even had one wolf that was stalking my dog and me by my camp for one week and showed no fear of man. That same wolf also hung around one of my neighbor's camps and that was probably his demise. Two of my neighbors have told me that they will shoot any wolves they see. They have never admitted to shooting any wolves, but these guys are not idiots and also are not the types to make false claims. During the fall of 2003, I never heard or even saw a wolf track all season. Since our deer numbers remained fairly high, I would suspect that the wolves in my area were probably killed. Am I upset about their absence? I'm not sure.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,099 Posts
Actually, wolves have been delisted to "threatened" status, thus allowing for livestock marauding canis lupus to be destroyed by the DNR. But only the DNR.

Shooting wolves that are attacking housepets or hunting dogs is not allowed. And there have been quite a few cases in the last couple years of bird dogs, beagles, and bear hounds being killed by wolves in the UP.

And Linda: Thats not a housecat. Its actually an all-black baby mountain lion stalking the flock. :D

Rare footage captured on film by yours truly.

There are lots of wild, naturally reproducing turkeys here in the EUP. Where they originated from is really a moot point... unless, of course, you're just here to argue & provoke.

Maybe on one of your "everyday talks with people in the UP" you might ask them to answer your questions about the turkeys.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
26,568 Posts
Originally posted by Trophy Specialist
I even had one wolf that was stalking my dog and me by my camp for one week and showed no fear of man.
When I was bear hunting in Canada, I got talking to the landowner one day. He said that the wolf you see in front of you is no problem, the 5 or 6 behind you are the problem :eek: He said that on more than one occation, he had to surrender a moose quarter for his saftey.

Black baby mountain lion :D

Maybe this has no relavance at all but, I know people in western states are really unhappy with the wolves.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,812 Posts
I love it...send it to the MWHC!! :D

Hey, Eastern, do you always see the negative side or do you just have it in for journalists, whose job it is to ask questions? Or is it just me? If so, hey, sorry, didn't mean to offend you...

If there are wild turkeys in the eastern UP, I think a LOT of people would like to know about it, and they'd also like to know how those birds got there...if that's provoking people, then yes, I guess that's what I'm doing...but for every person I "provoke", a lot more say "thanks for the information, that's great"...and they don't consider it a moot point...

If you don't want to talk to me, just say so...that's fine, I'll ask someone else.

And I do usually talk to someboday from the UP every couple of days, although because of work I'm doing and stories I'm working on, it has been every day lately.

Life isn't all that bad, Eastern, cheer up...;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
26,568 Posts
Originally posted by Linda G.
Meantime, I still talk to people in the UP every day
FWIW, I think he quoted you, and didn't put something in your mouth :D
 
1 - 20 of 171 Posts
Top