A Note from Our Executive Director
The dog days of summer are upon us and we hope you are enjoying all of the warm weather and sunshine so far. We have been hit by another round of COVID, so I remind you all to take all precautions possible to keep your family safe and healthy. While many theories exist as to why COVID-19 happened in the first place, we know and science knows, it is the abuse of wild animals through wet markets both here and abroad that are to blame for this pandemic. The U.S. is the number one importer of illegal wildlife trade, and we see this firsthand here with black bears and their organs.
Fighting for our wild animals has never been more important whether its civets or white tailed deer, mink farms or factory farms. This made me start thinking about farming and what best practices are. While many of us are vegetarian, it is worth considering how eating beef or other animals raised in unnatural conditions may harm wildlife. We know the Farm Bureau and Big Ag have their guns pointed at our natural world, especially wolves. However, farms also provide some habitat for wildlife so it’s not always black and white. Knowing this, it is our responsibility to make good choices as consumers.
This month, I thought we could highlight some of the folks doing amazing work on the ground for Wisconsin wolves and other wildlife. National Farmers Market Week is this month (Aug. 7th-13th) and it is important to remember that we still have many wonderful small, local farmers out there working with nature rather than against it. We believe it is vital to amplify the coexistence work of conscientious farmers, whether they are raising livestock or blueberries, who implement non-lethal abatement:
From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank all who donated the past month towards our hounding and baiting campaign. We will have two big announcements coming up this month due to your generosity! Also, be sure to SAVE THE DATE for our second monthly Fireside Chat scheduled for August 18th, where we will be featuring a two-hour special webinar you won’t want to miss!
For the wild ones and wild places,
We Love Our Local Farmers!
One farmer we love is Mary Falk at LoveTree Farmstead. Visit our YouTube channel to see an interview with Mary about why working with nature and with the Endangered Species Act benefits farmers. Indiscriminate killing does not bode well for either wildlife or farming, especially wolves. Mary employs the use of Spanish Mastiffs, as has been done for centuries, to protect her livestock and coexist. You can visit her farm in Trade Lake, WI or online here!
Another farm we love is Cain’s Orchard where we hosted our Wildlife Day at the Farm a few years ago. Diane Cain and family have a strong environmental message they wish to share with all of us who care about wildlife, that coexistence is not only possible, but vitally important. They recognize the importance of being a conscientious caretaker of the earth, its plants, animals and their habitat. Be sure to visit Cain’s Orchard in Hixton, WI this season for blueberry picking! Learn more here.
AUGUST ACTION ITEMS
Give your Input on Minnesota and Michigan Wolf Management Plans
Wolves of Michigan and Minnesota need your voice! The DNR is requesting public input on a draft of each state’s wolf management plan. Because the surveys are cumbersome, we have provided guides to help make this comment process easier. The August 4th & 8th deadlines are fast approaching….take action TODAY!
Voice your Support to BAN Lead Ammo
Concerned about lead ammunition and tackle killing wildlife and birds or making them sick? Use the resources provided below to find your talking points supporting a lead ban in our National Wildlife Refuges. Deadline to comment is August 8th! Resources for Talking Points: Lead Fact Sheet, Scientific Papers, Hunting with Non-Lead, Lead Poisoning, Lead in Hunting Ammo & Fishing Tackle
VOLUNTEER OF THE MONTH
For as long as I can remember, I have been interested and amazed by the natural world around us. I love all animals and believe they have a place and the right to exist in their world. I really can’t say when I became connected to the wolf. They seem to have always been a part of me. Perhaps I was a wolf in my prior life. When I look into their eyes I find it hard to look away. It’s as if they are looking deep into my soul, even through a photograph. This is how I know the wolf is my Spirit animal. I have sketched them, painted them, cross-stitched them and have them in many shapes and forms in my wolf living room.
I have been a member of Defenders of Wildlife, The Humane Society of the United States and National Wildlife Association for over forty years. As a member of Friends of the Wisconsin Wolf & Wildlife I feel can make a difference in my own state on important animal rights issues. I believe by group activism we can make positive changes to protect wolves and other wildlife. By working with other advocacy groups we were able to stop the wolf hunt that was scheduled for this coming fall and had wolves relisted again, except for the Rocky Mountain wolves, both great achievements.
I became a wolf advocate in 2013 prior to the wolf hunt of 2014-2015. I am proud to be a member of Friends of the Wisconsin Wolf & Wildlife and will continue to speak up for all wildlife…but especially wolves. Together we found that we can make a difference as we continue our fight to protect all wildlife.
~ Judy Caccitolo Aughey Madison, Wisconsin
The 9th Annual Speak for Wolves conference will be held online Saturday, August 13th and Sunday, August 14th.
The conference will have a few sessions each day, presented live by webinar followed by Q&A. Select sessions will be recorded and available for review. Details to join the webinar will be e-mailed to all registrants. This conference will feature special guest speakers including our Executive Director Melissa Smith, so we hope to see you there!