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Dynamics of Wildlife Conservation between Oppositions & Donations to Nonprofit Organizations

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Sam Jojola

USFWS Special Agent (retired)

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SCI the NRA and other alliances

These are very strong alliances that have had considerable historical and present influence over Congress regarding their unified agendas. Other lesser known organizations that support hunting and trophy hunting with SCI and the NRA are the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and the Wild Sheep Foundation.

These groups are completely unified in their focus and cause. Other opposition animal and wildlife conservation organizations could be more formidable and much more influential if they worked more closely together as a coalition if they followed the template that works for SCI, the NRA and other related entities.

It is an example of the “United we stand, divided we fall” philosophy that makes them so successful in their endeavors whether you support or don’t support these agendas.

Conservation NGOs should focus on coalition concept on key wildlife issues

It is often mentioned in articles over the years that SCI and the NRA are a very small special interest group and how can they be so successful in pushing through their unified agenda in support of trophy hunting across the globe. It appears they often advance ahead of those conservation groups that collectively have greater numbers.

Opposing conservation organizations could really learn from that concept to pursue long term protections for animals and wildlife across the globe. Some are working together on certain wildlife issues, but more need to unify collectively to make a difference if imperiled wildlife resources are going to have future protection, particularly in the legal arena. More

Trophy Hunting Threatened Species Travesty

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by: Sam Jojola

Post updated 11/18

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  1. “The proposal is a monumental waste of money due to Rep. Rob Bishop (R-Utah) who has helped push five (5) bills from the Natural Resources Committee that would conceivably dismantle the Endangered Species Act over a period of time. The ESA plays a major part of wildlife conservation. It would make more sense to form a council to fight these destructive proposals that would destroy the ESA or have the Secretary of Interior request Rep. Rob Bishop to resign. If Rep. Rob Bishop has his way to “invalidate” the ESA, imagine trying to protect wildlife and regulate hunting. Dismantling the ESA in any form or fashion is destroying large fragile ecosystems at the expense of wildlife resources for future generations.”

 

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The more things change, the more they stay the same

On November 8, 2017, Secretary Ryan Zinke announced the creation of the International Wildlife Conservation Council. The devil is in the details and what will follow in days, weeks and months to come will shape this Council and their priorities. Since the Council involves aspects of conservation, hunting and law enforcement, I wonder if Council heads will be selected from recognized leading experts in those three areas of focus. I am particularly concerned how the Council will deal with the ESA’s foreign listed species and import permits that are mentioned in this press release: https://www.doi.gov/pressreleases/secretary-zinke-announces-creation-international-wildlife-conservation-council

I believe the creation of this Council comes at a very bad time given the recent news of Zimbabwe’s regime shakeup and the most recent proposal for the U.S. to lift the ban on elephant trophy imports from Zambia and Zimbabwe. I hope now that President Trump has moved to keep the ban in place, that he and Secretary Zinke will consider keeping the ban given the current developing instability of Zimbabwe over the past several days: https://sg.news.yahoo.com/trump-puts-decision-allow-elephant-hunting-trophy-imports-hold-022152590.html

Five illegal Leopard trophies entering U.S. in 2008 detail Zimbabwe’s corruption

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WAN Investigator Goes Indepth About Former Undercover Campaigns & Proposal Of Federal Wildlife Agency Name Change

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By Sam Jojola

Original article appears HERE

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Sam Jojola, former Deputy Resident Agent-in-Charge for U.S. Fish and Wildlife (USFWS) Office of Law Enforcement, on wildlife trafficking, trophy hunting, Safari Club International, poisoning of birds by the mining industry and kill permits for the wind energy industry (Wild Horse & Burro Radio, Wed., 10/4/17)

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painy

Wild_Horse_Burro_Radio_LogoJoin us on Wild Horse Wednesdays®, this Wednesday, Oct. 4, 2017 More

WAN Undercover Investigator Sam Jojola Talks Rhino Horn Trafficking, Irish Gang Under Investigation For Killing White Rhino In French Zoo & Solutions

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By Sam Jojola

Originally posted at WAN

 

In 1990, a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Special Agent colleague and I worked in Nevada on a mid-west based suspect offering to sell a Black Rhino horn for $20,000.  In a covert capacity I secured his knowledge and agreed to meet him at a new casino in Las Vegas for the transaction. My colleague and Special Agents from Legacy U.S. Customs leased an adjacent room to the suspect and wired me up.

The horn was genuine and I agreed to purchase it for $20,000.  But only after debating the suspect’s friend who handed me a National Geographic Magazine with an article showing a single Black Rhino horn was worth $25,000 on the black market.  After paying a $1,000 deposit to hold the horn, I promised to return with the balance ($19,000 I never had). I opened the door and my colleague and U.S. Customs Agents entered to detain and fully identify the seller and his two colleagues and seize the horn and the $1,000 deposit.

 

Many weeks later after the suspect was indicted and later pled guilty, the end result was a federal judge assessing the suspect a meagerly fine plus court costs. After all that expenditure of effort, time, and money, not to mention the profit to be made. The judge just orders a fine and court costs for the life of an endangered rhino? They should be worth more alive than dead.

A colleague with another federal agency later quipped that his co-worker had several unpaid parking tickets in his government vehicle glove box that was more than the fine levied in this rhino horn case.

My colleague was shocked at the failure of justice and said it was impossible for the judge to be that stupid.

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Fighting Wildlife Crime amid Bureaucracy and Solutions

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Sam Jojola

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Background

“This article was originally published for World Animal News in November, 2015 and titled “Wildlife Crimes: Why Is It So Difficult to Enforce Laws”. This is an updated version that includes reference to a 2016 GAO report detailing the shortcomings and successes of combating wildlife trafficking. It often seems that the more things change, the more they stay the same. There are some positive changes, but they are slow.”

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Global Anti-Poaching Act of 2015

The passage of the Global Anti-Poaching Act (H.R. 2494) through the House on June 25, 2015 was long overdue and very encouraging news for wildlife law enforcement. It will greatly assist in addressing the rapid expansion of wildlife criminal syndicates and terrorist groups globally. Finally, after decades of “paralysis by analysis” there is some political motivation in the U.S. to deal with the exponential growth of wildlife crime here and around the world. Why has it taken so long?

The most recent GAO report dated September, 2016 titled Combating Wildlife Trafficking: Agencies are taking a range of actions but the task force lacks performance targets for assessing progress: http://www.gao.gov/assets/680/679968.pdf

Perhaps there will be another GAO report this year to show measurable progress.

Layers of bureaucracy and political meddling

When one examines the primary agency responsible for investigating wildlife crimes on the federal level, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Office of Law Enforcement (USFWS/OLE) has been and is the lead entity to do so. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is primarily a biological entity under the umbrella of the Department of the Interior that oversees a host of at least nine (9) agencies, like the U.S. Park Service (USPS), the Bureau of Land Management, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) to name a few. The USFWS/OLE is just one of fifteen (15) National programs managed by USFWS. In essence many layers of government within the Department of the Interior which is not a law enforcement entity like the Department of Justice. Other law enforcement agencies like the FBI, DEA, ATF, ICE, and the Secret Service, are not under the umbrella of a non-law enforcement entity that can sometimes run political interference and impede wildlife investigations and protection. More

Grizzly Bear Reintroduction vs. Multiple Conflicts and Political Land Grab

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samJ

Counterpunch:

Reintroduction alternative to delisting

Reintroduction of the grizzly into other ecosystems is the best option to expand the gene pool of the limited population in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem (GYE) and keep the current protection intact. In March, 2000, USFWS plans were underway to implement a reintroduction to several ecosystems, including the Selway-Bitterroot area. Specifics of the reintroduction of the grizzly from the GYE and other ecosystems are detailed in this wonderful plan 16 years ago.

USFWS plans to initially reintroduce the grizzly into this area in 1996 and 2000 were dismissed in 2001 when George W. Bush took office and the plan was never implemented.

In December, 2014, The Center for Biological Diversity filed a petition requesting USFWS again pursue reintroduction of the grizzly into the Selway-Bitterroot in Idaho and Montana with over 16 million acres of viable bear habitat to support up to 300 bears. Still nothing transpired. Wildlife bureaucrats would have a better argument for delisting if they took the initiative 16 years ago. Misguided priorities and biopolitics impeded this great plan.

Conflicts in the 1980s

In the mid to late 1980s I worked a few federal wildlife investigations with grizzly bear conflicts in Idaho with fellow USFWS Special Agents.

Back then there were a number of USFWS law enforcement investigations from colleagues in Idaho involving grizzly conflicts with the sheep industry in Idaho and Montana. There were reports of illicit shootings and occasional poisonings with a highly toxic carbamate insecticide known as Aldicarb or Temik illegally used to lace sheep carcasses and kill predators.

One covert investigation involved foreign sheep herders in Idaho where a colleague and I tried to document their knowledge of who told them to lace a sheep carcass with a toxic poison left for a predator like a coyote or grizzly to ingest. We were investigating a bald eagle that fed on the laced sheep carcass and died. Forensics proved poisoning as the cause of death.

How evil was that.

Another incident in Idaho involved a foreign sheepherder accused of killing a grizzly at night. The sheepherder never confessed or turned in the sheep rancher who was suspect in the crime.

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