On November 20, 2010, Kansas City Star reporter Brent Frazee wrote about a wolf shot and killed on opening day of hunting season by Andrew Protenic. One comment that Frazee made said:
Though they long ago inhabited the state, they disappeared in the late 1800s due to habitat loss and unregulated hunting. Today, they’re listed as a protected species in Missouri.
Jim Beers, a retired U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist and Special Agent, took issue with this article and the information contained in it. Here is his response.
Subject: 19 Nov. Article on Wolf Shot in Carroll County
I just received a copy of your 19 November article concerning the 104 lb. (wolf?, coyote?, dog? -actually they are all the same species) shot in Carroll County.
First of all, the current law situation regarding wolves that makes the shooter liable for serious punishment (felony, fine, imprisonment, loss of voting rights, loss of gun rights if it is judged a wolf based on DNA examination in a laboratory) of an animal legally taken (if declared a coyote) is not only absurd but an insult to all Americans, the Constitution, and our American way of life.
Second, you have unwittingly, I assume, spread one of the lies prevalent in the shameful efforts by bureaucrats and activists to establish wolves throughout the Lower 48 states. Wolf populations did NOT “decline greatly by the mid-1930’s due to unregulated hunting and habitat loss”: wolves declined and disappeared because of persistent determination for over 200 years by rural Americans using every means possible to rid the nation of wolves and their impacts on humans from death, maiming, and livestock losses to losses of big game herds and rural “domestic tranquility”. Wolves did and can, as proven every day, live in any climate and human societal arrangement so the “loss of habitat” canard is a prevarication of the highest order.
I know whereof I speak, I am a retired US Fish and Wildlife Service wildlife biologist and Special Agent.