A Day in the Life of a Coyote Hounder

Dale Gravdal with live hogtied coyote, May 18, 2015.

Dale Gravdal of Canby Minnesota with live hogtied coyote.

As winter brings snow, hound hunters bring blood onto the fields and forests of Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan and other states where hunting coyotes with hounds is a proud tradition. Beginning in December, midwestern states host multiple coyote killing contests, capitalizing on most states not categorizing coyotes as a game animal worthy of a regulated kill season or bag limit. Instead, hound hunters, as well as trappers and predator callers are allowed to chase, capture, maim, torture and kill coyotes throughout the winter without any fear of legal reprisal.

But if you’re familiar with Wolf Patrol, you’ve read this all before, so instead let us show you what one day in the life of a coyote hound hunter looked like according to their own photo journaling they did on Facebook a few years ago in southern Minnesota. By the way, Dale Gravdal from Canby, Minnesota is friends with multiple hound hunters in northern Wisconsin whose hound hunting cruelty has also been exposed on this website.

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Here’s how Dale Gravdal’s coyote hunting went in November 2015…

Gravdal's hounds chasing after coyote.

Gravdal’s hounds after a coyote.

den

Gravdal’s hounds finding coyote den.

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Gravdal with hound entering coyote den.

pulling yote from den

Gravdal’s hound pulling live coyote from den.

dragging kill

Dragging coyote back to Gravdal’s hound truck.

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Gravdal’s Hounds attacking coyote.

11.15 gravdal yote in water

Gravdal’s hounds before drowning coyote.

drowned yote

Pulling the dead coyote from the water.

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Gravdal’s hounds working on #6.

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Gravdal hound with ear torn by coyote in fight.

dogs

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Time for skinning.

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Gravdal’s killing crew November 2015

If you agree that hunting coyotes with hounds should not be allowed in Wisconsin’s Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest, please send an email asking forest officials to suspend organized predator killing contests in OUR national forests until a full scoping and environmental impact study on their affect is done.

Send your email to: cnnfadmin@fs.fed.us

 

 

 

 

When it’s Winter in Wisconsin…Let the Coyote Killing Contests Begin

Wisconsin DNR Chief Warden Todd Schaller recently told WXPR News in northern Wisconsin that wildlife killing contests like the planned KB Memorial Predator Hunt in Oconto County next week, are perfectly legal in the state of Wisconsin. The radio interview was in response to Wolf Patrol and other wildlife organization’s opposition to contests where prizes are awarded for the largest and smallest coyote, as well as the number of animals killed during the contests.

KB MEMORIAL HUNT

WXPR reported that the Oconto County hunt was billed by the organizers as “Wisconsin’s biggest coyote hunting tournament” which is saying something for a state that hosts dozens of killing contests every winter. The KB Memorial Predator Hunt is scheduled to take place on Saturday, January 19th and participants will be hunting with hounds in the surrounding Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest and other public lands open to hunting.

December 20, 2018 WXPR story: “No Extra Regulations on Hunting Tournaments” http://www.wxpr.org/post/no-extra-state-regulations-hunting-tournaments#stream/0

Wolf Patrol’s opposition to the hunt is based on past events such as in January 2016, when illegal baits were discovered in use on national forest lands during a Argonne, Wisconsin predator killing contest. Since then, illegally killed wolves have been discovered just over the border with Michigan, and in 2018 there where five separate violent conflicts (fights) between hunting dogs chasing bears, coyotes and bobcats and gray wolves in the the planned contest area.

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Red dots= 2018 wolf/hunting dog fight, Blue dot= KB Memorial Predator Hunt HQ.

Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest (CNNF) officials have also stated to Wolf Patrol members that they do not require a special permit for wildlife killing contests on national forest lands, despite the fact that they have no knowledge of how many hunters will be participating, or that cash prizes are being offered for the largest coyote killed in federally protected gray wolf habitat in the CNNF.

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Captured coyote used as live decoy by Ryan Allbee in Wisconsin.

Wolf Patrol is also opposed to coyote killing contests because of the wanton waste and cruelty that has been discovered in recent years being committed by hound hunters in Wisconsin. Last Winter, Wolf Patrol published dozens of videos from hound hunters posted on Facebook revealing hunting hounds mauling, fighting and killing coyotes and other wildlife in Wisconsin. The videos resulted in a DNR criminal investigation, but to date only one hound hunter has been criminally charged.

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January 9, 2019 Eddie Snyder Facebook post.

The video accompanying this article was compiled from the Facebook pages of two Wisconsin hound hunters, Eddie Snyder and Ryan Allbee. Although the videos were made between 2012-17, recent evidence shows Allbee’s hounds attacking a cornered coyote and Snyder is currently organizing a coyote killing contest for mid-February in southern Wisconsin. These individuals are not “bad apples” they accurately represent the kind of cruelty that has become inherent in hunting coyotes with hounds all over the midwest and other states with no closed season or bag limit on coyotes.

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Chasing and catching, then chasing coyote again in Wisconsin.

Wolf Patrol is calling on the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to prohibit Eddie Snyder from organizing any wildlife killing contests. We believe evidence available on his own Facebook account demonstrates criminal animal cruelty, and hunting methods contrary to DNR hunting regulations.

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From Eddie Snyder’s Facebook video January 2014.

Wolf Patrol is also continuing the call for email comments on coyote killing contests on our national forest lands. We believe a full review of the environmental impact caused by organized hunting contests on national forest lands and its impact on federally protected wildlife is in order before more contests should be allowed in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest.

SEND YOUR EMAIL OR LETTER TO WISCONSIN NATURAL RESOURCES BOARD (All members):

Laurie J. Ross, Board Liaison
Office of the Secretary
Laurie.Ross@wisconsin.gov
608-267-7420

PO Box 7921
Madison WI 53707-7921

SEND YOUR EMAIL OR LETTER TO CHEQUAMEGON-NICOLET NATIONAL FOREST OFFICIALS:

          cnnfadmin@fs.fed.us
          500 Hanson Lake Road
          Rhinelander, WI 54501
          715-362-1300

 

Jailed Florida Poacher Trained Wisconsin Hunting Dogs for Local Hounders

BO WOOD

Bo Wood’s hound training services were popular in Wisconsin and other states he operated

It has come to light that the leader of a group of nine arrested and charged in Florida with multiple illegal bear hunting acts, had close ties to Wisconsin bear hunters and was a regular attendee to the annual Wisconsin Bear Hunters Asscoiation’s annual convention in Rothschild, Wisconsin.

WI CONNECTION 4

“Bear banquet” refers to Wisconsin Bear Hunters Association’s annual convention in late March of each year.

On December 19, 2018, William “Bo” Wood and eight others were arrested and charged with conspiracy, animal cruelty, illegal baiting and taking of black bear related to their private hunting dog training businesses which spanned multiple states including Florida, Wisconsin, Michigan, Georgia, Virginia, Utah and New Mexico.

Training bear hunting dogs was the primary occupation for Bo Wood and William Landrum, and Facebook is full of their videos showing hunting hounds chasing and treeing bears with up to 16 dogs. Wood was also a hunting companion to many Wisconsin bear and bobcat hunters who were grateful to Wood for his training of their bear dogs.

 

Under the name, “Bayed Solid Kennels” Wood ran a hound training network that charged up to $750 for monthly dog training across state lines. Capitalizing on the varying bear hound training and hunting seasons across the country, Wood traveled almost year-round, often leaving his home in Lake Butler, Florida to train dogs during Wisconsin’s long summer bear hound training season which runs from July 1st until the beginning of September. Than Wood traveled to Utah, New Mexico where he also offered to guide hunters to trophy quality black bears.

BO WOOD II

Wisconsin hound hunter client of the arrested Bo Wood and William Landrum

Wolf Patrol has long opposed Wisconsin’s lack of hound training and hunting regulations because it invites abuse, especially from non-resident’s like Wood who capitalize on the leniency offered by Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources long hound hunting seasons. Not only are non-residents like Wood welcomed to train and hunt bear without any required license in Wisconsin, but as has been shown, Wood was actively training hunting hounds used to hunt bear in Wisconsin.

WI CONNECTION 5

Facebook post by Michigan guide outfitter operating in Wisconsin’s Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest with Bo Wood.

Wolf Patrol is calling on Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest officials to reign in the practices of bear hound training, hunting and baiting on our national forest lands, especially in areas where deadly conflicts between federally protected gray wolves and hunting dogs annually occur. In 2018, there were 24 fights between wolves and hunting dogs in Wisconsin, most occurring on CNNF forest lands.

Please send your email to:

cnnfadmin@fs.fed.us

BO WOOD III

Bo Wood with Wisconsin hound hunters 2016.

9 Hound Hunters Arrested, Charged with Conspiracy, Animal Cruelty, Bear Baiting Violations in Florida

In March 2018, Wolf Patrol reported Bo Wood’s to the Florida Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission after discovering his videos posted on Facebook. Authorities informed us that there was already an ongoing investigation into his and other hound hunting related illegal activity.

On December 19, 2018 Bo Woods and eight others were charged and arrested in Florida on counts of conspiracy to commit racketeering, animal cruelty, illegal baiting and the taking of a black bear.

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Bo Woods in Wisconsin with his local hunting buddies

While most of Bo Wood’s hound hunting activities took place in Florida, some such as that included in the above video, took place in Wisconsin. Wood regularly traveled between Florida and Wisconsin, where he transported hunting dogs to be trained, sometimes illegally.

BO WOODS POST III

Bo Woods planning bobcat hunt in Wisconsin with Darrell Jonet

Wolf Patrol is opposed to hound hunting in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest not only because of the cruelty it inflicts on black bears and hunting dogs, but also because of the violent fights that occur when hunting hounds are loosed in wolf territory. In 2018, there were 24 such fights between wolves and hunting dogs in Wisconsin.

Please send an email to Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest officials asking that hound hunting for bears be immediately suspended and a full environmental impact made of its impact on our national forest lands:

cnnfadmin@fs.fed.us

BO WOOD 12.9.12

For more information on Bo Wood’s arrest, here’s the FWC news release:

https://myfwc.com/news/all-news/bear-investigation/

Wolf Patrol to Monitor Coyote & Bobcat Killing Contest in Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest

KB MEMORIAL HUNT

(616) 914-4575 or (920) 723-2890

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 19, 2018: A citizen’s monitoring effort of a planned coyote killing contest has been announced by the group, Wolf Patrol which believes the contest will put federally protected gray wolves at risk. The “KB Memorial Predator Hunt” is scheduled for January 19, 2019 in national forest lands around Townsend, Wisconsin, where in 2018 there were five reported fights between wolves and hunting dogs. Contest organizers are offering prizes for the smallest, largest and most coyotes and bobcats killed on January 19th with participants allowed to use either predator calls or hunting hounds.

Wolf Patrol is a citizen’s group opposed to hunting practices that place federally protected wolves at risk. Since 2014, the group has monitored hound hunting activities in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest where the coyote killing contest is scheduled to take place in January. “We are opposed to a contest to kill the largest coyote in federally protected gray wolf habitat.” says the group’s founder, Rod Coronado “Wildlife killing contests should not be allowed on national forest lands where the full impact to public trust resources has not been studied or reviewed.”

Wolf Patrol has asked Chequamegon-Nicolet National forest officials whether they will require contest organizers to apply for a Special Use Permit, which is required for commercial activities on national forest lands. The state of Wisconsin also requires a license to hold raffles, which have also been planned for the January coyote & bobcat killing contest, which is a memorial for a recently deceased hound hunter.

Wolf Patrol members will be in the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest during the January contest with trail, video cameras and drones to watch for illegal hunting practices that are common during hound hunts for coyotes, when fights are known to occur. In March 2018, Wolf Patrol released a series of videos from northern Wisconsin hound hunters that led to a Department of Natural Resources criminal investigation into coyote hound hunting practices. In Wisconsin, it is illegal to allow hunting dogs to make contact or kill their intended prey, yet state law allows for year around coyote hunting with no bag limit.

The above mentioned videos are available on Wolf Patrol’s Vimeo site: https://vimeo.com/wolfpatrol

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Red= 2018 wolf/hunting dog conflict, Blue= Killing contest location

Ask Officials to Stop Upcoming Coyote & Bobcat Killing Contest in Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest

Ask Forest Officials to Stop Planned Killing Contest! from Wolf Patrol on Vimeo.

Wolf Patrol is asking Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest officials to stop the KB Memorial Predator Hunt from taking place on national forest lands. These kinds of contests should require an environmental impact statement or special permit at the very least, if they are taking place on federal land, so lets start asking why this contest is allowed to go forward without any oversight.

This predator hunt is planned for a portion of the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest where six violent encounters occurred in 2018 between federally protected gray wolves and loose hunting hounds, such as those that will also be used during this hunt. While it is legal in Wisconsin to kill coyotes year around with no limit, Wolf Patrol believes organized wildlife killing events that offer cash prizes for the most animals killed should not be allowed anywhere on our national forest lands.

We might not be able to stop the hunt, but it shouldn’t be allowed on national forest lands without the legally required oversight. This is also an opportunity to draw attention to all the other coyote & bobcat killing contests in Wisconsin coming this winter, so please encourage everyone to contact CNNF forest officials:

cnnfadmin@fs.fed.us

KB MEMORIAL HUNT

Here’s an informative and well cited email to reference and read:

I have visited and utilized the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest system amongst dozens of other national forests throughout the United States during my lifetime. It has come to my attention that a predator hunting contest is planned for January 19, 2019 with the check-in site being in Townsend, Wisconsin, which is surrounded by CNNF lands.

I write to inform you that it is of my belief that a Special Use Permit should be required for the organizer’s of this commercial event, if hunters are expected to hunt in the surrounding national forest lands. There is a entry fee requirement, prizes are being offered and a payout. Those conditions make the event large enough to warrant oversight and should be categorized as commercial in nature, not exempt from the requirements of not needing a special use permit when hunting or conducting killing contest activities on National Forest lands. This killing contest is a commercial enterprise and therefore should be required to obtain a “special use permit” and to comply with all rules, regulations and laws applicable under the Endangered Species Act.

I would draw to your attention the following legal concerns and implications:

36 C.F.R. § 251.50 Scope.

(a) All uses of National Forest System lands, improvements, and resources, except those authorized by the regulations governing sharing use of roads (§ 212.9); grazing and livestock use (part 222); the sale and disposal of timber and special forest products, such as greens, mushrooms, and medicinal plants (part 223); and minerals (part 228) are designated “special uses.” Before conducting a special use, individuals or entities must submit a proposal to the authorized officer and must obtain a special use authorization from the authorized officer, unless that requirement is waived by paragraphs (c) through (e)(3) of this section. 36 C.F.R. § 251.50

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Red= 2018 wolf/hunting hound conflict site, Blue= Location of KB Memorial Predator Hunt.

I would also bring to your attention with this proposed coyote killing contest that the contestants are likely to be considered to having caused a “takings” under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) when they interfere with the gray wolf while conducting their activities. Have your biologists weighed in whether the killing contest will impact wolves for purposes of the ESA? Subject to a few exceptions listed in other areas of the statute, Section 9(a) of the ESA lists forbidden actions against endangered species.

These forbidden actions include the importing, exporting, taking, possessing, selling, delivering, offering to sell, etc. of individual animals that are part of the endangered species.  “Take” is defined as “harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture or collect or to attempt to engage in any such conduct.” I would argue, that unleashing dozens or hundreds of hunters within the national forest to embark upon a killing contest in wolf habitat would fall within what is considered harming or known as a taking.

The National Forest Management Act, 16 U.S.C.S. §§ 1600-1614, empowers the U.S. Forest Service to make rules to regulate the occupancy and use of National Forest lands. 16 U.S.C.S. § 551. Pursuant to authority, the Forest Service promulgated 36 C.F.R. § 251.50(a), which requires a private user of a National Forest to obtain a special use permit to engage in any activity not specifically exempted. 36 C.F.R. § 251.50(c) exempts noncommercial recreational activities, such as camping, picnicking, hiking, fishing, boating, hunting, and horseback riding. The regulations define a “noncommercial use or activity” as any use or activity that does not involve a commercial use or activity. 36 C.F.R. § 251.51. A “commercial use or activity” is, in part, any use or activity on National Forest System lands where the primary purpose is the sale of a good or service, regardless of whether the use or activity is intended to produce a profit.

Again, the killing contest has an entry fee, payouts and is commercial in nature. I realize that 36 C.F.R. § 251.50(c) provides, in part, that no special use authorization is required for noncommercial recreational activities such as camping, picnicking, hiking, fishing, hunting, horseback riding, and boating. However, even these noncommercial activities may be subject to the permit requirement under § 251.50(c)(1), if authorization of such use is required by an order issued pursuant to 36 C.F.R. § 261.50

I have great concern that a commercial contest for the largest coyote killed in an area with a healthy gray wolf population is putting federally ESA protected wildlife at risk. As you may be aware, there were also 6 reported conflicts between wolves and hunting dogs in the area of the planned KB Memorial Predator Hunt in Townsend.

Thank you for your assistance and I hope you can tell me of any legal requirements for predator killing contests on CNNF forest lands and whether your office will be requiring a special use permit and consultation with USFS biologist to determine the impact this proposed killing contest will have on the Federally listed endagered wolf population.

METZ COYOTE 1.17.14 II

A January 2014 photo posted on Facebook by Wisconsin hound hunter Francis Metz.

 

Wolf Patrol Offers Reward to Deer Hunters Witnessing Wolf Poaching

KOHL WOLF 11.18.17

Wolf illegally killed on November 18, 2017 during Wisconsin’s last deer season. Steven Kohl of Manitowoc was charged and is awaiting trial for the incident.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

November 15, 2018- On the eve of both a full House of Representatives vote to delist federally protected gray wolves, and the beginning of Wisconsin’s 9-day gun deer season, the activist group, Wolf Patrol is reminding licensed deer hunters that shooting a wolf in the state is a federal crime. They are offering a $1000 cash reward for any information on illegal wolf killings during deer season.

Gray wolves were returned to federal protection in Wisconsin in December 2014, after the state held three managed wolf hunts that resulted in the killing of over 500 wolves. The current estimated population statewide according to Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources is just under a 1,000 animals, mostly in the northern portion of the state.

“We believe deer season in Wisconsin should be a time for family traditions, not federal crimes.” states Jennifer Garde, a Wolf Patrol member from Friesland, Wisconsin. Since 2014, Wolf Patrol has been monitoring controversial hunting practices that put federally protected wolves at risk, such as the practice of running dogs after bear, which results in over a dozen wolf depredations on hunting dogs each year. When wolves kill or injure hunting dogs, illegal killing of wolves is often promoted by those affected.

“Wolf Patrol is not against hunting, but we are adamantly opposed to deer hunters taking pot shots at wolves in anger or retaliation for dog depredations or the federal government’s unwillingness to return wolves in Wisconsin to state control.” continues Garde, “Gray wolves in Wisconsin help prevent the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease amongst our state’s vital deer population, and some of our own members will be out in the field hunting in wolf territory where they’ve seen some nice bucks. Wolves are a hunter’s friend, not enemy, and their continuing return to Wisconsin will help ensure many successful deer seasons to come.”

The $1000 reward offered by Wolf Patrol is available to anyone who provides credible information on any illegal wolf killing to Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources and that results in any individual being charged for killing a wolf. Informants can remain anonymous and can claim multiple rewards.

CONTACT: Jennifer Garde 920-723-2890 or Laura Menefree 920-264-8358

teamwolfpatrol@gmail.com

 

FROM THE CRIMINAL COMPLAINT IN THE STEVEN KOHL CASE:

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REPORT VIOLATIONS