Summary: Reintroduction Of Wolves In Yellowstone National Park

2557 Words11 Pages
Brandon McHugh
August 13, 2015
Environmental Ethics
Reintroduction of Wolves in Yellowstone National Park

Environments today that we consider as “natural” or “wilderness” are not particularly wild or natural. The areas of land that have unmanaged ecosystems, where humans are not allowed to disturb, are places that the government set boundaries, named, and created regulations for. A society as advanced as the humans on earth must have areas of wilderness regulated by the government. Fortunately, humans have governments that will manage our areas of natural wilderness. Considering Glen Cole’s statement in ‘A New Environmental Ethics’ on Yellowstone National Park, “The primary purpose of Yellowstone National Park is to preserve natural ecosystems
…show more content…
This final result of the wipeout of wolves was directly related to Congress granting funds to kill off remaining wolf populations in fear of their primary food source like elk and moose being eliminated. Farmers were also in great support of getting rid of the wolves, as they would often kill livestock affecting farmer’s livelihood. With the passing of the Endangered Species Act in 1973, there was hope for the reintroduction of the wolf. However, residents of the surrounding areas of the park felt as though the wolf only brings destruction wherever it goes. Nonetheless, in 1974 the Department of Interior and the USFW appointed a wolf recovery team to implement a plan to eventually recover the once thriving wolf…show more content…
Without wolves, elk and deer populations rise too high and they over consume vegetation. This increases erosion on riverbanks, increasing turbidity in river waters and decreasing overall productivity. Also, in the winter months, elk and other large omnivores are not feeding regularly enough, and usually die of starvation or disease and other creatures, wasting fuel for food web, do not consume their remains quickly enough. The introduction of wolves is essential to bringing back the ecosystem to a healthy flow. Wolves eating habits are much more irregular than other primary predators, in that they can only consume about 20 pounds of meat before having to lie down. Between November and May, wolves provide about 29,000 pounds of meat to forest scavengers while humans leave 73,000 pounds just from January to mid February. It is clear that humans leave larger amounts of meat in a much shorter period of time. This makes it so most of the meat that is possible for left over animals to eat goes bad for scavengers, while wolf kill remains can consume the leftovers. This enables scavenger animals to feed on leftover remains, creating a healthier middle part of the food chain. Wolves also help maintain the most fit and robust elk populations as they feed on the weaker and smaller specimens. Douglas

More about Summary: Reintroduction Of Wolves In Yellowstone National Park

Open Document