“Is nothing sacred anymore?” asked Mike Wiggins, chairman of the Bad River Ojibwe Tribe in Wisconsin, in reaction to the proposed wolf hunt in the state.

His question was somewhat rhetorical because he already knew the answer. Wisconsin’s state legislature passed a law in April allowing for the hunting and trapping of wolves. Since the opening of the permit application process, which runs from August 1–31, more than 3,000 people have applied. The season is scheduled to begin October 15 and run through February 2013.

The wolf, Ma’iingan, is considered sacred by the Ojibwe and figures highly in their creation stories. Tribal member Essie Leoso noted that according to tradition, Ma’iingan walked with first man.

“Killing a wolf is like killing a brother,” she said.

The wolf hunting application fee is $10. Permits will be given to hunters by the Department of Natural Resources through a lottery-style drawing and will be awarded at a cost of $100 per permit to 2,010 hunters, according to a recent Associated Press report from Madison. Each permit-carrying hunter will be allowed to take one wolf until the state limit of 201 wolves is reached.

Since the grey wolf or timber wolf was removed from the list of endangered animals last December, Wisconsin passed Act 169 allowing for the hunting and trapping of the animals. Minnesota has enacted a similar law and will hold its inaugural wolf-hunting season during approximately the same time period.

The decision by the state to allow wolf hunting does not sit well with the tribes in Wisconsin, who were not consulted regarding the rules and limitations of the law before it was enacted. The law allows hunters to shoot or trap wolves during the day or night, and allows the use of bait to attract the animals as well as the use of dogs. According to a recent story in the Wisconsin State Journal, Wisconsin will be the only state that allows the use of dogs in the hunting of wolves.

A coalition of groups opposing the hunt is suing the DNR, according to an August 8 story in the Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel. Plaintiffs include the Wisconsin Federated Humane Societies, Dane County Humane Society, Wisconsin Humane Society, Fox Valley Humane Association, Northland Alliance, National Wolfwatcher Coalition as well as individual citizens. The lawsuit claims that the hunt will violate the state’s animal cruelty act, citing the proposed use of dogs in hunting wolves.

There is considerable disagreement regarding the number of wolves living in Wisconsin as well as the capacity of the land to support the population. Kurt Thiede, Land Administrator for the DNR, told The DePaulia of DePaul University that the state’s wolf population count was 850 in spring 2012 and that the maximum capacity for Wisconsin land to support is 500 wolves. Organizations such as the Timber Wolf Alliance argue that the land’s carrying capacity is around 800. The Timber Alliance is an organization founded to promote the recovery of the wolf population.

Via radio telemetry, the Bad River Ojibwe Natural Resources Department estimates that there are between 14–18 wolves on the 125,000 plus–acre reservation, according to Wiggins.

“I have never seen a wolf in the woods in all my years hunting,” he noted in a recent interview. While driving the back roads of the reservation, he has seen wolves only twice.

If the wolf population were as high as the DNR estimates, Wiggins observed, there would be no need for the Department’s extensive efforts to manage the burgeoning deer population in the state. The growing interest in hunting wolves is largely driven by Hollywood style hype, Wiggins feels.

“Films like The Grey are all about fear mongering and depicting wolves as human predators. The facts, however, don’t support this view,” Wiggins said.

He said that despite the presence of wolves in the woods, he and his fellow Ojibwe hunters are still able to fill their freezers with venison.

“The presence of wolves in the woods is sacred and tangible. They are a gift,” he said. “From an ecological management perspective, they have a place, and they’re not doing any harm.”

The push to hunt the wolf is largely driven by trophy-hungry sportsmen, according to Wiggins.

“There is no subsistence factor in wolf hunting,” he said. “The political realm is driving this harvest.”

The Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association and other such groups played a lead role in drafting the legislation permitting the hunt, according to a story in the Milwaukee Journal.

The six Wisconsin Ojibwe tribes appear to be united in their decision not to hunt wolves. This decision, however, begs an important question. According to treaties signed in 1837 and 1842, Wisconsin’s six Ojibwe tribes ceded land to the government that covers roughly the northern third of the state. In the Voight Decision of 1983, the federal government affirmed the Ojibwe tribes off-reservation fishing and hunting rights on ceded land, permitting them to harvest half of available resources.

Therefore, the tribes are entitled to 50 percent of the DNR’s wolf hunt limit of 201 for the season. Will the wolves need to be harvested, i.e. killed, in order to meet the requirements of the Voight Decision? Tribes are concerned that their decision not to harvest wolves may lead the DNR to simply increase the number available to citizens at large.

Authorities from each of the tribes as well as representatives from the Great Lakes Intertribal Fish and Wildlife Commission are currently in negotiation with the DNR about the details of the hunt. Asked if the DNR is likely to recognize tribes’ choice not to kill their quota of wolves as still meeting the agreements of the Voight Decision, Jason Stark, Policy Analyst with GLIFWC responded, “We’ll see.”

The court has never ruled on whether their hunting entitlement allows them to hunt the wolves or requires them to, according to Stark.

“The tribes’ position is that our share is our share, and we have the right to keep animals within our ecosystem,” Stark said.

The state’s position is that the tribes have a right to harvest.

“The state has won the right to management of resources. The tribes, however, see the state as co-managers,” Stark observed.

Ultimately the state has to be sure that any system put forth does not “detriment” the tribe.

“This is their responsibility as primary manager,” Stark said.

The DNR is in a difficult position, according to Stark, noting that the department has been directed by the court to carry out the wolf hunting law.

“They don’t have a lot of wiggle room,” he said. “Our conversations with the DNR are going okay. Hopefully we can figure out what is best. Fortunately we still have some time until the hunt begins.”

The Bad River tribal council is unified in opposition to a wolf hunt, said Wiggins and tribal vice chairman Peter Lemieux. The tribe is asking the DNR to create a six-mile buffer zone around the reservation. According to Wiggins, the tribe’s Natural Resources Department has determined that the four wolf packs currently living on the reservation sometimes make excursions beyond reservation boundaries.

Since wolves are social animals, the killing of an alpha male or female would lessen the chances of survival for the entire pack, according to Wiggins. In describing their inextricable relationship with the wolf, Ojibwe often speak of their creation story, which says that whatever happens to one will happen to the other.

The future of Wisconsin wolves is uncertain. Tribes have until the end of August to declare a wolf quota to the DNR and perhaps create a new, broader definition of the term “harvest.”

“At this point, at least I know for sure that our packs will have a bit of sanctuary here on our reservation,” Wiggins said. (SOURCE)

Responses to "Wisconsin Tribes Struggle to Save Their Brothers the Wolves From Sanctioned Hunt "

  1. Anonymous says:


  2. Anonymous says:

    It's amazing...the white-man is AGAIN showing their disrespect for the Nation; I AM one of those white men and I see NO reason why a season would be allowed on a majestic animal like the wolf.
    How many people are going to eat the wolf they shoot????? I bet the number is practically -0-.
    I have no issues with sensible hunters, eat and use what you kill; the people who were on this land long before us not only understood this but they practiced it very well.
    This is just WRONG...

  3. Anonymous says:

    Maybe hunting laws should be passed to "harvest" humans in order to regulate the population... This is so wrong.

  4. The state obviously got the count of wolves wrong and by the sound of it on purpose so as to allow hunts. Can the Ojibwe tribes buy up their quota of hunting permits and NOT hunt the wolves, just so the licences are reduced by their quota at least? Could the state act against them if they fail to hunt?
    I can see why a decision not to apply for their quota of licences would be preferred so as to protest at the hunt itself. I hope this hunt can be stopped in time! It's not just the insanity of killing animals which are sacred to the Ojibwe, but these hunters often wound the animals and then mock them while they die in agony, which is something that makes my blood boil.

  5. meriel says:

    I find the blood lust of humans appalling! To kill to survive is one thing but we should all learn to respect every creature living on the planet as we all have a part to play in the survival of the planet as a whole. WE must protect our natural environments and the creatures withing them. How can we stop this evil and legal slaughter of wolves and others?

  6. Anonymous says:

    I totally agree

    "Maybe hunting laws should be passed to "harvest" humans in order to regulate the population... "
    Well, maybe this is already happening, in a hided way. disrespect to animals is very close to disrespect to humans. both are beings with a soul, a heart and with feelings.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I don't think the wolf should be hunted at all. The wolf plays a vital roll in the Eco system and the fact that they were missing for so long has really upset the balance. (and as a white child growing up) I have alwys been told that the wolf is a sacred and beautiful creature and that we (the white man) destroyed something we had no place to, just becouse we were superstisiuse and scared.
    I can't belive that a state would allow the hunting of the wolf when there were so many cintervation efforts to bring them back. It's sad that most people are more worried about a stupid trophy than what is actually good for the interment that surrounds them. (I apoligize for any and all misspelled words, but I felt like my opinion need to be herd.)

  8. Anonymous says:

    I'm a South African citizen and i admire the Wolves very much. they got a mysterious and magical air about can people kill such a perfect and beautiful creature of the wild?? PLEASE stop this mindless slaughtering of one of your wildlife that's unique to your country......PLEASE STOP BEFORE IT'S TO LATE TO BE SORRY!!!!!!!!!

  9. KIRBY says:


  10. Anonymous says:

    I am white but have always felt a soul connection to the wolf _ a very stoic and beautiful animal_ we are destroying everything good on this earth. Please STOP this slaughter. Soon our children will only have pictures to look at of things and animals that were, but are no longer. Why must man kill everything_ even the forest we walk in~ Very sad days ahead.

  11. Anonymous says:

    The birth number of wolves would have been lower if the environment could not sustain them. Mother Nature always finds a way. LEAVE THE WOLVES ALONE!

  12. Anonymous says:

    There is no purpose but greed and bloodlust to murder our sacred brothers. The white man has no respect for life, his own included. We lived in harmony many thousands of years with the gifts of Creator. The white man has been predictable in his zeal to destroy Grandmother Earth and the four leggeds. He is too ignorant to see that he is marking himself for extinction. When there is no longer balance - there is no place for the murderers of wolves. There has never been a photo of cruelty in the eye of the Wolf - Man, the "hunter" on a rampage, on the other hand - take a glance - Dead eyes, no compassion, no soul.
    I stand with my brothers of all Tribes - We must stand proud and true.

  13. Fox says:

    The "white man" always thinks they know best. Wolves, like Indians, were in this country, long before they got here. They did their best, to wipe out the Indian, as they moved across the land, but couldn't kill them all. Now, again, the trophy hunters step in. But instead of taking scalps, they kill our Wolves, our links to the Spirit World. You can't eat a wolf, no more than you can really eat a dog, (although Asians do eat dogs), whites do not. I have seen the results of wolf hunts, just dead animals, rotting in the sun, the same way the white trophy hunters left our buffalo. The white led government needs to wake up, there is more here than trophies, there is life, and that life is sacred, not only to the First People, but to all that respect the animals aqs brother, and as God's creatures.

  14. Restoration of Wolf's presence in the landscape of the mind, heart, and land is crucial, and no man has the authority to impede the good work of men and women who have dedicated their lives to this simple task. Work, as always, will never be rare to identity, and the campaign to ban wolf culling ("hunting") in Wisconsin and anywhere else on the horizon that I learn it to be present is something I will pay very close attention to. Thanks for the call to arms.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Plain and simple, you kill the WOLF you kill YOURSELF for he is YOU. We are all born brothers and sisters of this Earth, we are ONE. WE survive as ONE.

  16. Anonymous says:

    This is so wrong. The wolves have a right to live free, NOT be killed just so some idiot can say he killed a wolf.

  17. There is SO little wildness left. And what there is is so precious. The vast majority of people would be thrilled even to hear a wolf in their lifetime. And ecosystems in which they are still present are helped to be kept in balance by their presence. Wisconsin is continuing the overkill out of balance approach to nature that is rapidly destroying the intricate essential web of life on this planet and will very soon lead to the end of our so-called modern civilization. The collapse has already begun. I salute those who remember and honor a wiser way of being and see the wolf as a brother, not a trophy in a grisly photo.

  18. Billie says:

    There is absolutely NO reason for the killings of the wolves !! It seems like if man isn't killing something that he isn't happy !! They are Beautiful animals and Deserve To LIVE !!!!!!!!!!

  19. Anonymous says:

    My name is Mike and I was born in Duluth Minnesota. My heart aches for my brothers for they know what is about to happen.Even from as far away as I am I hear there cry and feel there pain.All my adult life I have been blessed to live with a Wolf.My first was Ivory, he was a injured alpha male when I found him.Through the years there have been many.I have been blessed to be able to walk with them.My current companion was born in captivity her mane is Miss-E.For the last few months she has been sitting at night in her yard and she begins to howl facing East towards my home as if she was talking to one of her far away brothers. She will do this for about an hour then she just stops and sort of sits and whimpers.I will then give her a hug and a good back scratch to make her feel better.Clearly she is feeling sad and for no apparent reason.One night I started howling ( I howl pretty good for walking on two legs)This seemed to make her feel much better but she is still looking East towards Minnesota.I with all my heart belive that the wolfs know what is to come once again man has turned his back on his brother.We just can not let this happen.We can not forsake our brothers.I am ashamed to say that I am mostly white but my true self my heart is Dakota.I am also Ill and I can no longer work and I just do not have anything to loose.So I shall travel home to fight for my brothers.I am not coming alone my pack is many.All of us are some of the best marksman in the world and we all have three things in common. First we love our brother the wolf.Second we all have nothing to loose.Third we all hate politicians.We are on are way.Our voe My voe to our brothers is this.For every wolf whose blood is spilled TWO WHITE POLITICIANS WILL BE HARVESTED.The world will be a much much better place with 402 less white politicians.I do not expect any of you to stand with us for most of you have families and have much to much to loose.I do expect that you do what ever you can.Our numbers are most definitely enough to stop this. the time for talk is over. It is time for action.It is time to draw the line in the sand and say no more you will not cross it.If you love your brother the wolf you will stop this.There are many things you can do like march on your state Capital Ten or twenty may not work but how about TEN THOUSAND surround the capital get the worlds attention.Park junk cars across roads and highways and then walk away.Some of us are already amongst you and the rest of us will soon be there.I gladly give my life for my brother....Good Bye....

  20. It is never ending, mans injustice too the animal world and this Planet. Everyday I read of mans cruelty to the world . Why do governments think they have the right to allow the slaughter of such a find loved beast as the wolf, to disrespect the indians and there beliefs. Both of which where here before the white man and now it's the politicians that are making the decisions, they arle not equipped for this work,, they do not have the wisdom needed to understand the needs of the people. It is not just the Indians that feel this, many of us do all over the world as the world is watching and passing it from one to the other. Leave the wolves they are not trophys to be hunted. Hunting was for food not sport, you want sport go kick a ball and leave the animals alone. Time for people to think of just what they are doing to our Eco system, let's us not destroy ourselves".......they go so do we !

  21. Anonymous says:

    "The wolf, Ma’iingan, is considered sacred by the Ojibwe and figures highly in their creation stories. Tribal member Essie Leoso noted that according to tradition, Ma’iingan walked with first man."

    And that is so. There is a growing body of paleoethnological and paleoanthropological evidence that Man and Wolf co-evolved symbiotically, learning from another and helping one another.

    The Wolf is not just any fellow creature - He is Mankind's oldest friend, a hunting partner in days long gone by. We co-evolved together, the Wolf civilizing the unruly Ape and the Ape domesticating the camp Wolf, and both spread around the world together. Neither could have achieved that alone.

    Of course, it was always obvious that Man's oldest friend had to be the Dog's ancestor but there is more to the story than this. Man did not domesticate the wolf. Some wolves freely entered in a partnership with Man, and that happened over 40,000 years ago, at the same time that Man moved on from being an ape somewhat more clever than other apes to having art and living in more cohesive bands. This is no coincidence. Consider our closest blood-relatives, the chimpanzees. They are always squabbling and fighting between themselves, and any show of solidarity and altruism is restricted to the nuclear family – mother and offspring, and siblings between themselves. Not so in a wolf pack – there is order and discipline at most times, and injured wolves are cared for by fellow pack members. Primitive Man learnt that from Wolf and became Human. Wolf helped him spread over the world and accompanied him. Over the millennia, Wolf also humanized and became Dog. For millennia more, Humans still lived in peace with Wolves. Where Humans and Wolves still coexist, they still do so peacefully. Not all Men are Humans, however.

    However, about 11 to 9,000 years ago, in a land far away from the Turtle Continent, some Humans domesticated the Sheep. That happened immediately after the time another First Man creation allegorical story can be traced back to, the one that caused those Humans to become sundered from Mother Earth and to become Inhuman. As the wolf had long before changed human societies and their ways of thinking and behaving, the sheep also changed those human societies and their ways of thinking and behaving. Wolf became the mortal enemy of those people because the domesticated sheep is totally helpless and because those men no longer wanted to share anything with him. Some of those men became inhuman; the majority became like sheep. And both obeyed the command they had been given to be fruitful, to multiply and to fill the Earth and subdue Her.

    White Wolf – Not the one who runs this blog, but another, who is white, who walks on two legs and who lives with one who walks on four.

  22. Anonymous says:


  23. Anonymous says:

    If we could all buy the permit and then not use it what a improvement that would be, its only for the money value they allow this to happen it must be stopped, Stopped ASAP the people opposed are more then the people hunting these great animals I hope I never see anyone shooting a Wolfe , maybe I could buy a permit to shoot bad people, wolves are not bad and do not hurt anyone so please please please stop this today. Truly Darling.

  24. Anonymous says:


  25. Jane C. says:

    It's difficult to believe that people actually get pleasure from killing these beautiful creatures. It's even worse that they do it when their numbers are low. They are not the evil creatures that fairy tales often suggest, but are intelligent, highly sophisticated pack animals that hardly ever threaten man. It's a shame that not everone does not see their beauty (but after looking at the above comments, it is refreshing to see that there are so many caring, compassionate people who object to this sick 'sport').

  26. Susan says:

    Hunting for food is one thing. Hunting because one gets pleasure from watching the life drain from another creature's eyes is sick. Isn't it one of the signs of a serial killer to enjoy killing animals?
    What can one say of a society that condones the killing of God's creations for pleasure? What is wrong with us?

  27. Anonymous says:

    These beautiful animals belong to the earth and to GOD! These people are NOT GOD!!!What gives them the right to kill these wolves for absolutely no reason? And kill the babies so they wont grow up? Keep up this garbage and the wolves will be extinct and then who will you blame??? Find something else to entertain yerselves with like rats or roaches. Hmm Maybe thats not such a good idea. Ya'll are on their level and might get along with them:(

  28. Anonymous says:!/photo.php?fbid=263190540461079&set=a.263182587128541.60697.263143730465760&type=1&theater

  29. Anonymous says:

    I am from Minnesota about fifteen minutes from hudson wisconsin border... I have been a pro wolf advocate for a very long time...and I have made this cause for the wolves in MN and WI....this link is on one of my posts and it is with the story of Minnesota ignoring the american indians pleas to not hunt the cause is on facebook and it is called... Boycott!! Minnesota and Wisconsin tourism to oppose the wolf hunts 2012. I have a pledge to take to not vacation there...polls one on trapping and one on using dogs in wolf hunts...along with article links, and petitions to sign... please come and see...and help the wolves...I believe we have to hit them in the money area...also calling to boycott commericial farmers, ranchers with farms and plants in mn and read the labels and not buy...and polaris, cause they claim that everyone is afraid to buy a snowmobile due to is the link, thanks...

  30. Anonymous says:

    BOYCOTT!! Minnesota and Wisconsin Tourism To Oppose The Wolf Hunts 2012

    on facebook...lots of polls, pledges, and petitions....

  31. Anonymous says:


  32. Anonymous says:

    Boycott Wisconsin October 15 to end of February... in protest of the wolf hunt. Money is the only thing that this republican led government understands and a state like Wisconsin that derives much income from tourist may take notice when ho
    tels and shops suffer durring the wolf hunt season. After all, it is the hunters dollars that got this hunt started. Book your winter ski or snowmobiling trip to Michigan where there is no wolf hunting.

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