The Force of the Horse

Yellowstone and Montana are Killing the Last Wild Buffalo

read more at the Buffalo Field Campaign

“Yellowstone National Park — shamefully complicit in Montana’s livestock industry’s war against wild buffalo…”

photo – Buffalo Field Campaign

More than 1,200 of America’s last wild buffalo have been killed this winter, and it isn’t over yet. Hunting along Yellowstone’s boundaries has taken the lives of more than 400 buffalo. Hunters are still in the field making kills. It’s a terrible time of year to hunt. The buffalo — like other wild grazers — have used up all of their fat stores, and are showing ribs and bony hips, waiting for the re-greening of the Earth so they can again replenish their huge bodies. This is also the time of year when the long, harsh winter takes her toll, too. There will be many buffalo who will not survive into spring, but the government is not accounting for these deaths in their mad rush to reduce this most significant and vulnerable population. Further, hunters are still killing adult female buffalo who will begin having their calves in about six weeks. All too often, BFC patrols make heartbreaking discoveries of finding fully-formed baby buffalo in their mother’s gut piles.

Additionally, Yellowstone National Park — shamefully complicit in Montana’s livestock industry’s war against wild buffalo — has captured close to 800 buffalo, all of whom have been or will be sent to slaughter. The trap is emptying quickly, though Yellowstone continues to attempt to capture. Recently, some buffalo have resisted these attempts, while others have not been so lucky. On Monday in Gardiner, BFC patrols documented as five Yellowstone wranglers on horseback tried to trap fifty-five buffalo; all but one got away, running to the hills for their lives. The unfortunate mama buffalo who was trapped caught the attention of another family group of twenty-two. Coming dangerously close to the trap, they sealed their own fate as the wranglers, hungry to capture, took advantage of the situation. Hundreds of wild buffalo are gone forever. BFC’s Mike Mease and Stephany Seay attended the second media tour of Yellowstone’s trap last Thursday, where we again witnessed Yellowstone park rangers, wranglers, and biologists doing the service of the Montana Department of Livestock as they loaded wild buffalo onto stock trailers headed for the slaughterhouse, then proceeded to move more through the trap. It has become business as usual for these buffalo abusers, just another day in the park. They tell us that they don’t like doing this, that they want slaughter to end, but their actions say something else. Yellowstone National Park is not without significant power, but they have shown they are without courage. They can stand up to Montana and refuse to participate. But they don’t. Their cold routine of capturing, testing, sorting, and shipping the country’s national mammal to a horrific death — as they don the image of this sacred being on their uniforms and rake in millions from the people who come to adore them — has become just another day at work. They attempt to put the task of change on the public, shirking responsibility for their part in these crimes. While it is true that a current Montana law – MCA 81-2-120 — is the driver behind the cumulative mismanagement plans and practices, Yellowstone should not have the luxury of of passing the buck. The world’s most well-known national park has astounding influence that they choose not to use. Instead, they kill America’s last wild buffalo. By the end of March, this should all be over.

Please continue to keep pressure on Montana and Yellowstone. Do not ease up. Be relentless and don’t accept their excuses. Laws, decisions, and management plans can be changed.
* Yellowstone National Park Superintendent Dan Wenk 307-344-2002
* Montana Governor Steve Bullock 406-444-3111

And contact your members of Congress to tell them that this must end once and for all. Congress holds the purse strings and can end the funding…(CONTINUED)

4 replies »

  1. This is just unbelievable and horrifying!! We in Illinois just opened a buffalo santuary here in Illinois. Our state and the people love them! We had a few babies born last year and tons of people went to see them. If these bastards see the need for relocation just let our folks know. But its not about relocation its about the KILLING abd the almighty DOLLAR!; Have they all gone MAD!! NO..they are all Republican Red Necks!! Uneducated people who are hell bent on killing anything and everthing except themselves! Is this why they want the 2nd Amendment to destroy everything in their path just because they can!! Sorry for those who do not see politics in the mix. Here is your proof! We cant sfford to keep buffalo, burros or wild horses in our parks or on public lands but the Dumpster and his Deplorables are seeking millions to build a wall between Mexico and the US. Creatung havoc in the World
    snd the US. Impeach them all for they are a bunch of stupid, stupud people!! And I will start making calls. Why dont the people out there videi tape a segment and put a plea out there on UTube to save them? I would but I dont live out there or have access. Please post on UTube for the whole country to see the destruction of one of our last iconic animals!


  2. Reform the National Park Service

    The posts to this blog reference several other National Park Service whistleblowers. Have you reported your observations of corruption, nepotism, sexual harassment, civil rights violations, etc.? If not, please consider making an official report now. You can do so anonymously.

    Proponents of maintaining the status quo of government (mis)management of public lands will criticize conservation land trusts. I welcome the criticism because it forces me to learn more about an alternative to National Park Service bureaucracy. Some critics feel that private, non-profit trusts will be more susceptible to pressure than the government. In short, they don’t trust trusts to protect public land.


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