Wolf facts, not fear
Re “Wolf revival is no Disney tale for Siskiyou County ranchers” (Page 1A, Dec. 27): Your recent story would have benefited from more facts on how rarely wolves attack livestock, let alone people, and how unjustified vilification of wolves contributed to their mass extermination in this country.
In the past 100 years, the two instances of wolves killing humans in North America included one in Alaska, where there are 7,000 to 11,000 wolves, and one in Canada, where there are 40,000 to 60,000 wolves.
The approximately 5,500 wolves living in the lower 48 states have killed no one. In comparison, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a dozen or more people are killed by livestock each year; 200 by car collisions with deer; 20 by dogs; and countless others from venomous insect stings or poisonous snake bites.
Only when we are willing to replace fear with facts does coexistence become possible.
Amaroq Weiss, Petaluma
Wolf’s reintroduction record
Ryan Sabalow’s article on the Siskiyou County ranchers’ wolf problems was well written but omitted some important facts. In states where they have been reintroduced they have had a disastrous effect on elk and deer population, not to mention ranchers’ cattle and sheep.
In Idaho and Montana, entire herds of elk and deer have been wiped out. In Idaho they became such a problem for their wildlife and livestock that Idaho legislators appropriated $2 million to help control them.
Of special importance is that wolves, like mountain lions, revert to human prey when deer are in short supply. A special education teacher in Alaska was mauled to death and partially eaten by three or four wolves in March 2010 when prey species were unavailable.
The reintroduction of wolves is the harbinger to disaster for both our game animal populations and people living in rural areas. Because of the politics, the Siskiyou ranchers’ SSS program may be our state’s only answer.
John Lowery Sr., Folsom
Is decorum dead?
The Sacramento Kings are running a promotional ad on their TV broadcasts these days. It shows DeMarcus Cousins acknowledging the admiration of a young fan by tossing his perspiration soaked headband into the face of the young boy. The boy seems very appreciative, but I found it to be repulsive and sickening. Is decorum dead?
Bart Jones, Fair Oaks
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