strip bannernew-logo25W. R. McAfee

OPINION: Part 2

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The Southwest is the area where Canadian and Mexican wolves mostly likely will meet and crossbreed. According to USFWS documents, the Mexican wolf’s inbreeding contributes to small litter sizes and low pup-survival rates. Cross-breeding with the non-native Canadian wolves would “solve” the Mexican wolf’s gene pool problem. Call it a “nonessential experimental Mexican wolf subspecies.” Or call it what it is—a bigger crossbred “Mexican” gray wolf.

Matt Cronin, a University of Alaska, Fairbanks and research professor of animal genetics, addressed USFWS officials at their Public Hearing Concerning Mexican Wolves in Arizona on December 3, 2013. He told the panel:

“. . . Mexican wolves went through a very large bottleneck. They don’t represent the original population. They came from a small Canis population. Assessing the subspecies is somewhat futile in that respect.

“. . . subspecies, in general, are basically a subjective category. They are not a hard scientifically blank category.

“. . . this phenomenon of naming species and subspecies has been termed by the broad scientific community as inflation, splitting things into groups with the intent of granting conservation, again. The entire scientific community outside of the wildlife is recognizing this. And it’s very important that we realize that subspecies as a scientific category is subjective. It’s not definitive. The scientific community agrees on it.

“ . . . I suggest you use the entire body of science and the recent discrediting of subspecies that have been listed and reconsider the science. . .”
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