Hi Jett, I agree that is an unfortunate turn of a phrase, but it doesn't quite reflect what I told the reporter, which is that it would be great for someone/some agency to spend money buying conservation easements to protect the Gulf Coast canids. And by "buying" I mean from willing sellers, of which there usually are a few if the money is right. A conservation easement, for those who don't know, is a legal agreement that restricts development of certain types (as described in the agreement, they vary quite a bit) but allows otherwise unfettered use and enjoyment by the landowner, including the right to sell or pass the property down to heirs. Conservation easements have been used with great success in North Carolina and other states to protect land for all kinds of wildlife, while maintaining private ownership and everything that goes with that. They can be permanent, or they can be term-limited (20-30 years, for example). I'm sure many on this forum are familiar with the concept.So more unprotected hybrid coyotes are found where the first ones were caught. Imagine that.
And Ronnie immediately proposes taking more private landowner rights!
Are you gonna tell this to the private landowners at Martell's Ronnie?
Sutherland said the Galveston canines have effectively quashed a decades-old impression that red wolves were a feckless predator overwhelmed by the numerical superiority of coyotes.
He adds that the Galveston group has DNA that can’t be found in the animal’s captive population.
“From a practical conservation biology standpoint, these animals have special DNA, and they deserve to be protected,” he said, explaining that conservation easements that restrict development along parts of the Gulf Coast are an essential first step.
I think you're talking about an op-ed written by John Wooding in the News and Observer in 2012. I just looked for it, and couldn't find the link either, the N&O search function doesn't seem to go very far back. His point was that if you assume today's coyotes are the same as red wolves, then we could just declare the red wolf has recovered itself. I disagree, because I don't think the unique DNA of the southeastern red wolf is captured well in the coyotes we have around NC.Looking for an article I know I read. Something like: "How the red wolf saved, itself". Any help appreciated. I know I read it several years ago.
Take 'em, the paper you refer to was by vonHoldt et al. out of Princeton, and as I've mentioned a few times on this forum, that particular statistic (75% coyote) was from a test that explicitly assumed that there only two canid species for the red wolf DNA to be assigned to, gray wolves and coyotes. Not sure where the "common dog" part you refer to arose, it wasn't from that test from that paper, and could be an embellishment that someone else added to the story.Since the DNA analysis of the current red wolf prototypes show nothing unique to declare these are red wolves, but rather these are 24% gray wolves and 75% coyotes with a little common dog thrown in, how can these animals in Texas be found to have redwolf DNA. What is the source of the baseline DNA to distinguish a red wolf?
Ron, if there is a recognized DNA designation for the extinct species canis rufus, where is it listed? The DNA comparison that is most widely used is from the zoo invented hybrids out of PDZ, isn't it? I would think that IF there was a pure recognized red wolf designated DNA, all this hubbub and "scientific research" to prove or disprove their existence would be moot.For Mike Noles and others, there have been tests since the year 2000 or so that can distinguish red wolves from coyotes fairly reliably, and even estimate with some precision the level of hybridization that has occurred in the case of hybrids.
Mike, you could contact the Waits lab at the University of Idaho and ask for the sequences/primers they use to identify red wolves vs. coyotes, I can't rattle off the codes. Yes, they use the captive animals as a reference population (I'm pretty sure), no, Point Defiance Zoo did not create any significant level of new DNA in a few generations of captive breeding.Ron, if there is a recognized DNA designation for the extinct species canis rufus, where is it listed? The DNA comparison that is most widely used is from the zoo invented hybrids out of PDZ, isn't it? I would think that IF there was a pure recognized red wolf designated DNA, all this hubbub and "scientific research" to prove or disprove their existence would be moot.
Take 'em, even before the news about the red wolf DNA discovery along the Gulf Coast, I had often questioned the wisdom of USFWS culling so many of the initial 400 animals they captured 40 years ago. So we're on the same page there.Ron, hint! It seems that in spite of USFWS declaration of the red wolf extinct in the wild and in spite of euthanizing close to 400 animals that were trapped and then declared not good enough to be "real red wolves", that a red wolf like species survived without government help. In fact the declared extinct survived in spite of USFWS intent to eliminate them from Texas, La.
Perhaps that is because USFWS trapped the wrong animals to begin with, but for certain it is another glaring example of USFWS having run amok even with good intentions. Now 40 years later and with millions of dollars invested, it is apparent the red wolves (whatever they actually are) would have been better served just left alone in their chosen habitat.
Please explain how you would have "protected" them against coyote intrusion for the last 35+ years.In retrospect, I think USFWS should have spent a couple of hundred million dollars back in the 1970's buying up land...around where the last wolves were hiding... and protected them in place...
No, that isn't what I'm saying. First, we still don't have a good estimate of how many canids with red wolf DNA still exist along the Gulf Coast, and what average fraction of wolf DNA they have. Could be just a few, though I'm hoping it is a lot. Second, you're ignoring the recent history of the NC population - it grew to 150 animals in the wild by 2006, all high % red wolf. It was doing just fine, till a few people decided to spread misinformation and/or shoot them to oblivion. The USFWS didn't fail to start a decent red wolf recovery project - they failed to defend that project when state political winds rose up against them. I'm sure they made some mistakes in communications with landowners along the way, but as we've seen with a certain real estate developer's recent misinformation campaign, we all make mistakes (e.g. the bit about the wildlife disaster, see page 1 of this thread).So you are saying they did a better job by themselves than the ones is NC did with extensive intervention. Is that not an argument to end the intervention in NC?