Predators

Predators, more than any other wildlife, engendered fear and loathing, prompting an all-out assault through much of history.

Often painted as the enemy to livestock production and therefore frontier and later rural civilization, predators’ positive role in the environment was never considered.

Predators evolved alongside the herds they hunted. Predators keep herds healthy and strong by selectively culling the weakest members—the old, the injured, the genetically compromised and abandoned youngsters. In their pursuit of prey, predators also keep the vast herds on the move, protecting habitat by keeping the grazers from staying in one place too long.

When we look at nature’s big picture, we have to recognize the role predators play in the health of the natural world. True biodiversity must also include fangs and claws.

Latest articles

Read more about predators and management practices:

Telling the Scientific Truth About Coyotes

“Coyote killing contests and indiscriminate coyote poisoning programs do not control coyote populations, and hurt the environment.

Wildlife Killing Contests – The Movie

The polite and restrained movie appearing below is not anti-hunting. In fact, it should be mandatory viewing for all hunters and wildlife lovers.   While most of the contests target predators, each shot fired damages […]

Redefining “Recovery” of Grizzly Bears

Here is the position of those who say that the definitions governing Grizzly Bear recovery should be expanded.  

Working Dogs – Farm To Fork Wyoming

Highly attuned to their partnership with man, livestock herding and guardian dogs are powerful and essential forces in the balance of nature and predation for today’s Wyoming rancher.

The Gray Wolf Leads the Way for Other Endangered Species

“Common sense advice on how best to advance wolf restorations, from the PROPERTY AND ENVIRONMENT RESEARCH CENTER of Bozeman Montana. PERC is the home of free market environmentalism.  

Washington State to Manage Wolves Within Borders After Fed Action

Quoting the article below, “Wolves were wiped out in Washington by the 1930s at the behest of the livestock industry. The animals began migrating back into the state from Idaho and British Columbia early in […]

Colorado Voters Approve Gray Wolf Reintroduction

Quoting the article below, “Colorado is the first state to reintroduce wolves at the direction of voters rather than federal wildlife biologists working under the Endangered Species Act.”

Using Wolves as First Responders Against a Deadly Brain Disease

For more than 150-years, agencies and the public waged a relentless war on predators of every size and species across North America. As the article below indicates, this mentality is slowly changing. (Those elk hunters […]

How Predators and Forest Management Affect Elk Numbers

Elk numbers around Yellowstone Park have declined over recent decades. This is usually blamed on wolves and bears. But according to this video, forest management probably plays a larger role.      

Nature’s Fear Factor

“For animals in Mozambique’s Gorongosa National Park, the normal balance of competition and predation was upended when a war wiped out the top predators. The remaining animals didn’t simply grow in numbers—they began behaving in […]

Painting Eyes On The Butts Of Cattle Surprisingly Effective At Scaring Off Would-Be Predators

Here is another example of low-tech, non-lethal ways to protect cattle from predators.     NOTE: this article was originally published to IFLScience’s Apple News Channel on August 7, 2020. It was written by Katy […]

Mother Grizzly and Cubs

  Idaho Fish and Game posted this video with these comments: Every year Idaho Fish and Game Biologists place GPS collars on grizzly bears to learn about their reproduction, survival, and distribution. A recently retrieved […]

When the Otters Vanished, Everything Else Started to Crumble

Quoting the authors of the article below, “In the Aleutian’s delicate seascape, otters hold the entire ecosystem together. As they have disappeared, the rest of the local food web has started to crumble.

Ranching Alongside Predators in an Idaho Forest

“Using domestic animals to restore overgrown forest near Yellowstone Park in Idaho.”

Bison Bunch Up to Protect Calves

Over millions of years, rangelands have evolved under grazing by nomadic herds that travel in mass, bunched up to protect both young and adults from predators. And, plants have evolved to need this. This observation […]

25 Years After Returning to Yellowstone, Wolves Have Helped Stabilize The Ecosystem

As discussed in the article below, “by reducing elk numbers and thinning out weak and sick animals, wolves are helping create more resilient elk herds.”   This is true, but another likely reason for falling […]

The Secret Lives of Fish-Eating, Beaver-Ambushing Wolves of Minnesota

Fishing wolves.    

Wolf Species Rebounds in Southwest, Angering Ranchers

The success of the Mexican gray wolf reintroductions is great news. Limited wolf hunting would change wolf behavior,  making wolves less of a nuisance, according to ranchers quoted in the article below. Wolf advocates should get […]

Book Review: Cat Tale: The Wild, Weird Battle to Save the Florida Panther

“Quoting a reader: This is the latest of several books by an author whose focus is on nature (primarily Florida’s) and attempts to protect it, with special emphasis on what happens when a bureaucracy becomes […]

Grizzly Bear Death Rates Are Climbing

“The real problem described in the article below is that grizzly bears do not fear humans. Limited hunting would change that, greatly reducing bear mortality from human causes by making bears wary of people.  

Mexican Gray Wolf Numbers in the US Soared in 2019

Cattlemen have a big problem with these little wolves. On closer inspection, it turns out there are ways to ranch alongside these animals. These alternative strategies benefit wildlife and habitat in important ways while improving […]