Property Rights Foundation of America®
Founded 1994

Wolf Attacks on Humans & Hybridization of Canis Lupus

Clayton Dethlefsen
Hamilton, Montana
Executive Director, Western Predator Control Association

Nineteenth Annual National Conference on
Private Property Rights
October 17, 2015
The Century House, Latham, N.Y.


Thank you, Carol. I want to thank everybody for being here. I know we're the last of the presenters and generally when I come up last I look at the door and the door is swinging. But what I'd like to do is… This is a subject that we're going to try to discuss four parts. Normally when I talk to these things it takes about sixty hours if I cover it in detail. We're going to try to give you the information you need to understand what you're faced with within the East but in particularly in New York if they do start bringing back in the wolves from Canada. We're going to talk about, basically, the four subjects. The last one that I'll try to address because I believe it's more appropriate for you folks that might understand that it is the hybridization of the canine species which you are faced with here in the New York and even the upstate New England area and so forth around there.

Now if you'll bear with me for a moment I'm trying to find out what we're doing here. Somewhere I lost everything here. Please don't look just because I put my glasses on. I also testified as an expert witness in Oulu district court in Finland. It was a criminal case. There were farmers that had shot hybrid wolves over there and they were being prosecuted because the academic community in that country has a real stranglehold, pretty much, on a good portion of the judicial system over there which is, incidentally nothing like ours. I gave my testimony relative to what they call a control group which they were using to say the wolves that were shot were not hybrids they were actually real wolves. I thought I gave a pretty decent scientific accounting for that. What had happened is, unknowing to me, they had an activist judge on the bench. Over there it's kind of a panel of four lay people and then the judge who oversees. His decision was that, "Yeah, we understand that these are hybrids but because they look so much like wolves we're going to protect them, too." What we now have is a situation where there's been international precedence set that can be cited for whatever people want to use it to say, "Listen, Finland knows that these hybrids are actually wolves and the physical look of these wolves is so close to pure wolves that we can't shoot them. We can't trap them. We can't poison them." And so that's opened up doors to two things: a floodgate for not only the true species but a hybrid species to be in your area protected. And they will do more damage than the wolves actually do in that regard.

Let me go ahead. My wife is sitting over here, Leslie, we're going to be married forty-six years tomorrow. At least she says so.

Audience member: My compliments to you.

Mr. Dethlefsen: Thank you very much. You ought to be congratulating her. She's put up with me that long.

What we deal with in the realm of the wolf is partial information from the government agencies. They will tell you only what they want you to know to justify their position. And they do this in court. Not too long ago, about fifteen years or so ago, the State of Wyoming challenged the federal government, Fish and Wildlife, Department of Interior, and took them to district court. They won saying that the wolves they were bringing in from Canada — and folks you're faced with this, too — were not the species or even subspecies that was there in this range in the area where I live. The trial judge says, "We agree. Get those wolves out of here." They appealed it to the Tenth Court of Appeals and they were overturned. What they were overturned on was partial evidence that the representatives, attorneys for the government, gave the judge. They also knew that they had an activist judge.

We dealt with the same thing in Missoula, Montana. When we talk about making decisions that affect property rights. And although we're not going to get into that in detail, I'll try to give you enough information from this presentation so that when you hear what's going on you'll be able to say, "Wait a minute. That's not right."

Well, folks, here we go.

I have to give acknowledgements to three of my colleagues, Dr. Jack Ward, who has been with me since we created the organization Western Predator Control Association, Dr. Rod Evans, who was DVM, a doctor of veterinary medicine in Challis, Idaho, and Mr. Tim Kemery. They have contributed significantly to our research.

When we talk about DNA studies and we compare dogs to wolves, 99.8 percent of the DNA in a domestic dog is the same DNA in a wolf. Now, that may seem significant but that leaves 2.2 percent or six million genes that make the difference between a wolf and a domestic dog. That is significant because there are eleven particular — and I'll go through this quickly — eleven particular characteristics where the dog and a wolf differ. Over the evolution of time what has happened is these particular traits of the wolf have evolved to fit the particular area where they live. For example, one of the things we found that happened about 12,000 to 15,000 years ago — there's some scientific dispute on this, some say it was 121,000 years ago — where the human beings what they did is they say they captured wolf pups and they trained those wolf pups and domesticated them to help with other things like hunting, other things around the villages and so forth, to help them out. In doing that they bred in a black colored pelt into the wolves. Then they crossbred with what they classified as the pure wolves at that time. So, when you talk about the wolf origination about, let's say 12,000 years ago, it became a hybrid at that point in time.

Now the Endangered Species Act is a funny tool. It's a very funny tool. I just talked to Tom [Congressman Reed] about it a little bit. It really needs to be revised because the Endangered Species Act says that species are to be protected. Not subspecies. Not hybridizations. But it also says, if you read between the lines, in the fine print, so to speak, it says in there, "Oh, by the way, if you don't have a pure species but you do have a hybrid that is mostly a pure species you can use that." And the reason that they're able to get away with that is after about three to four iterations of breeding in the canine population, you basically lose the dog's DNA on a percentage basis. Now that's an arithmetical calculation. It's like you take one and one, a hundred present of this, a hundred percent of that, two different ones and you combine them in a gather and DNA comes fifty percent from the male, fifty percent from the female, you put it together and now you've got a fifty-fifty hybrid. We'll get into that in a little bit. You can see what happens that if you continue that fifty percent domestic dog with one hundred percent wolf about the fifth iteration you can't tell whether you've got any dog in the wolf at all. So, they're able to get away with that type of discussion.

And they got true with that in the Tenth Circuit ten years ago. People come around and they say, "Well, you know what, don't worry about the wolves. They fear you." Wolves do not fear anything. What they are is they are survivalists. The evolution has made them survivalists. Instinctively what they do is they get out there and they say, "You know, I want to take that moose down but there's only two of us and that moose is pretty good maybe it's not a good idea. Maybe we ought to get more wolves in here and then we'll all attack him at the same time." So, what they instinctively do is they look at the risk to injury to themselves. And if you've ever faced a bull moose you're going to understand why they're doing this, okay.

So, what happens is people then perceive as they go along and the government will tell you this, "Don't worry about the wolves in the wild. They're afraid of you." They are not. They will assess the situation and create a set of circumstances to their advantage. At that point in time they will make a decision on whether to pursue or to leave the area or just to follow.

Pack membership is a social structure. Wolf packs are very, very social. They have, you have to imagine this, wolf packs start out with a male and female, Mom and Dad. Then they go down through and they say, "Okay, we'll have a litter of pups." Well, a litter of pups are the kids. They have instinctively, like we have done in many, many years where I grew up Mom and Dad were the rule of law 'til I got to be about thirteen then I knew everything they did that they didn't want me to know. We have a definitive hierarchy that keeps repeating itself. Wolf packs have a need to stay in an area and be the size that the food source will support. About the time the wolves become teenagers of sixteen, seventeen, and eighteen, as we relate it to our kids, they get these urges. These urges take them to leave the pack and try to find their own mate. That is how migration works. What the government told our folks out here in our three states, Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming, is, "Oh, they'll just stay in the area." We're now finding wolves of several generations of the original wolves that were brought in there in California and Oregon and Washington and Colorado even moving further east in our own state of Montana.

Montana is a fairly big state, So, we've gone to the point of disproving that. But as was pointed out, once they put them in there, try to get three thousand wolves captured and collected and send them back to Canada. The Canadians don't want them.

Domestic breeding. When you're in to domestic breeding and we talk about wolves, Carol and I talked about this for some people are bringing what they say is full-blooded wolves into classrooms of third and fourth graders. And they're saying, "Oh, by the way, don't worry about it. These wolves are passive." Now keep in mind one thing. When you bring a wolf or breed wolves in captivity, if you will, and domesticate them, you've taken the dominant structure away, completely away. It would be in what we call the sylvatic area or the wild, wilderness areas. And when you do that, we substitute in there, either the trainer or somebody else, the owner or somebody else, as the dominant force. Now when that dominant force brings that wolf who responds to that domination, into a classroom environment, the wolf is going to do what that dominant force has trained it or influenced it to do. It's not going to do anything else. You remove that dominance and that wolf then reverts back to saying, "Well, I'm on my own right now. I can do pretty much whatever I want." And I'll show you as we go through here perfect examples of that situation.

What you're looking at here is the Latin names, and I haven't taken Latin since I was a freshman and sophomore in high school, which is, you know, about thirty-five years ago, I guess. In any event, what we're showing here is that, if you look at [Unintelligible] here right here in the, I'll point it out right there. This is the Timber Wolf. That's the natural formation and territory of the Timber Wolf. Characteristically, physically, if you go from Alaska Down to Florida you will find things happening to the size and the structure of the wolves. Yet they're all either species or subspecies of Canis lupus, which is the wolf.

Here is the area in Canada where they took the wolves and brought them into Idaho, Montana, Wyoming. When they brought them in they basically put some in Yellowstone Park, and then they basically put.. we are fortunate to have a little lodge in Idaho, central Idaho, they put them in the wilderness area right around where we have our property. This was back in 1995 or 1996. They told us, "Oh, by the way, wild wolves will only have one litter each year." That was a boldfaced lie when they said it and they knew it.

Now here's what happens in the regard to breeding. Normally, Nature said you can't breed too close together. And we know this, for example, from St. Bernards who are breeding. They wind up with structural hip problems and other medical issues concerning their survival, directly affecting their survival. And when it directly affects their survival, they know "weak in the wild" means death. It may only mean death because you can't keep up with the pack. It may mean that in the hierarchy of the interactions that go on in a wild pack where dominance is always being tested that you'll get injured because you can't keep up. You're not physically capable of keeping up. In any event, that means that, to that particular wolf, his ability to last for the three to five, or nine years is a maximum generally, in the wild is completely mitigated. And so, instinctively, the pack will only breed with Mom and Dad because the rest of it, for lack of a better description, is Dad to kids is incest. We know about those types of things. But that's what it really is in the wild, all right.

Now, what also happens is these younger pups get in there and they come in from a litter. The litters will also determine their own pecking order. And you've heard the term, "Boy that runt of the litter, that birddog I got was a runt of the litter he was the best dog I'd ever had." Well, in wildlife, like the wolves and foxes and so forth, there is a runt of the litter. But in their regard that runt is the one that is dominated by everything. It's dominated by the lowest level female or male pup and often times what happens is they actually drive, as they get older, they actually drive what we call the "omega wolf" out of the pack and he goes off by his own.

Now, when that happens things happen within the environment that impacts us directly. With a close-knit, believe it or not, when I look at Montana versus New York's area of open wilderness, I have to say you're pretty tightly packed. We're kind of spread out. If you start having several packs all of a sudden these omega wolves are on their own, they've got to survive. They cannot hunt like the rest of the pack. They cannot survive like… they change their behavior. And if they're in your area and you're raising dairy cattle and you have calves running around it's very easy for a full-grown wolf to take a calf down. Right away you're going to feel an impact.

As an example, what happened in Dillon, Montana, where our granddaughter went to college there, there was a sheep herder that had a pretty big operation about 6,000 or 7,000 sheep. Wolves got into — now these are a couple of single wolves if you will — got into sheep and within hours they killed 128 of them.

Now, in simple terms we talk about taking. What's taking of personal property. In your packet if you look at some of the handouts I have I talk about the 10(j) rule, the taking of personal property, a lack of due process and compensation and so forth. What happened was when they started this program they decided that, "Oh, we don't want to deal with this and you can't sue us," Well, some of the organizations out there decided to say that we're supporting this injection, if you will, of wolves rather than reintroduction. We felt it was an injection. What they are saying is that, "Well, we'll pay some of these people for their losses therefore they won't have a claim." What they did was they set up a fund, however, in order for you to collect you had to prove that it was a wolf on that day, at that time, that killed your animal.

We have Grizzly Bear. We have mountain lions. We have coyotes. We have, in other words, a lot more predators out there. A guy calls in — this is a true story — a guy calls in and he says, "A wolf killed it. I saw it kill one of my calves." He called in to the federal Fish and Wildlife people. "We'll be out." Three days later they showed up. Now, in the wild, as I will show you, hopefully, in a video shortly, there's a lot more things out there, so to speak, that want to feed on a carcass. What you're looking at here is what they call the Eastern Wolf that would be coming into your area. What they plan on doing, as I understand it, and somebody out here may know a little bit more than I do about this, out of Algonquin Provincial Park, they say, there are the only pure Eastern Wolves left. Keep in mind that this park is an area where people go, interact with the wolves, even have specific opportunities to go out in the evenings with guides, government guides, and howl at the wolves and the wolves howl back. The wolves come in and they howl back and forth. The problem with that is you're now habituating the wolves. You're acclimating them to people. So, you've taken away this instinct of survival in these wolves. They're no longer cautious around people. They're no longer cautious than around your livestock, around your backyard or around your dogs, your pets. They're not cautious when you go out for a walk in the woods or a hike.

So, if they do start doing this, as I understand they're planning to, you folks are going to be faced with the same problems we're faced with now. The only difference is we face it on a much broader scale in that our geography is wider. I just want to give you kind of an orientation really quickly here. Red Wolf is another thing in the Southeast that they say is a species. Another one they talk about is the Mexican Wolf. Recently, the federal Fish and Game Department sent a letter to the New Mexico Fish and Game Department representative and said, "Oh, by the way, we want to bring Mexican Wolves out of Mexico into your state and you haven't issued us the permits we requested so we can do that." And the letter basically said, in the last two paragraphs, "Oh, and by the way, we hope you'll issue them because if you don't we're coming anyway." Now, here we go into a Constitutional issue of states' rights. Can they say, "No?" Apparently not.

Now when we take a look, you've got a lot of coyotes running around here. And I was mentioning to Tom Reed a few minutes ago and we were talking about the size of them. What you have, really, is an Eastern Coyote that's really a hybrid. And what happened, as the Western Coyote and the Timber Wolf out of the Michigan-Minnesota area began to move years ago into your area, they interbred. So, what you really do when you say that, "Boy, that coyote we see out there is really big." It is, because it's a hybrid, it's not a coyote. It's a coywolf. Their behavior is a lot different than either the wolf or the coyote. They also can interbreed. The problem with that interbreeding is the breeding cycles for both the coyote and the wolf are different. We've got a frustrating situation out there. Their behavior sometimes winds up being completely irrational. We can't explain it. Well, yes you can if you really look at it.

Coydogs is another thing we've had. When my mother-in-law was alive we used to go up to a place they have near the Elk Lake region. We'd be out there and she'd say that we'd hear the howling. I won't tell you how long ago it was. This was back in the early days of our relationship. She would say, "Yes, my father said those are coydogs." What that basically means is coyotes began to breed with feral dogs. A feral dog is nothing more than, say, a farm dog that runs off for few hours or maybe just runs off for a couple of days and then he or she comes back. That's how you got those. You're dealing with the idea of hybrid wolves, hybrid coyotes and hybrids with domestic dogs. If you bring in wolves — and they say there's only a minimum of the true Eastern Wolf in Canada — and you bring them in in the small groups, that breeding urge is going to come through the packs and they're going to go off. This is scientifically researched and proven. What will happen is those wolves will start breeding with everything that walks down the street. I fact, there was a study done in Yellowstone National Park and we call them Casanova wolves. Obviously Bob Hope would be really proud of that I'm sure.

But on the other hand, what we do is we've got a situation whereby the potential to dilute and eradicate the pure wolf strain of the pure wolf species by bringing them in is so significant that they will try to tell you it's not a problem because wolves don't interbreed with coyotes. But we know that's not true. They'll sell it to you as they go through. And they'll try to sell it to the courts, I submit to you they'll try to sell it to the courts. By the way, they've been successful in doing that to a certain degree and as was talked about earlier by Roger [Pilon], they do lean to taking the experts advice from the government agencies. Every court, whether it be in Missoula, Montana, or in Casper, Wyoming, or whatever it is when it comes to wolves or whether it be in New Mexico, they will say, "Well, the government's got all these experts." Keep in mind who these experts are. They are generally, and more often than not, young Ph.D. graduates who have been hired on by the government. They're not only wet behind the ears, they've got mud behind their ears. That's the ones that are saying, "Oh yeah, and by the way, I'll say this as an expert." The government will put them up as experts. Why are you an expert? "Well, I've got a Ph.D. in whatever." DNA analysis or species recognition or whatever it is. Then they will ignore the defendants' expert witnesses who's been out there, like Will Graves — I'm sure a lot of you know who he is. Will is a very good, close personal friend of mine. They will ignore his input and take on the government.

"How old are you young lady?"


"How old are you Will?"


"Oh, we'll take the twenty-nine-year-old's attitude here towards it because it fits their purposes." This happens in activist judge courts. We've got a lot of them out there.

We also deal with the domestic and feral across the nation. They're all out there, everywhere.

We also get into the foxes. Foxes have a very definitive in disease control, for example, plague. We'll get into that. They take the rodent and they kill it. Not only do they kill one they kill and harvest a bunch and then they store them for the wintertime. They're like squirrels in collecting nuts. However, the coyote does not do that. Coyotes kill foxes which means that the coyote is dominant over the fox. Wolves kill coyotes. So sometimes they say, "Listen we'll bring the wolves in, they'll kill the coyotes. The foxes will be good. They'll take care of the diseased animals." I don't know about that rationale. I've never, never understood how they can get away with that kind of logic especially when they're saying they're trying to preserve species not eradicate them.

Just take a quick look at this. This kind of gives you the lifecycle of wolf pups. At five weeks they're weaned and now they're eating solid food. The solid food is like baby food. The rest of the pack goes out, comes back regurgitates it and then the pups feed on it. At about twenty-seven weeks or so they begin to travel with the pack and now they're eating solid food themselves. What you see on here is what they call the rendezvous area. That's the transitionary area. That's where the wolf pups learn to be wolves. They're well protected. The pack protects them at all costs. Why wouldn't they? That's their lineage.

Black pigmentation I put up here purposely just to reinforce that that's what they're calling a wolf. When I was watching Disney World and Disney when I was growing up — I'd say Howdy Doody but I don't want to say that — what you would find out is that these wolves were usually gray in color with a black tip. They had hair. They're coat was two layers and they had long guard hairs. They shed their undercoat in the springtime and got it back in the fall to get through the winter. When you start looking at this, this is actually a wolf but it's hard to see the guard hairs on this because of the domestication and the interbreeding that happened thousands of years ago. It's carried through.

This is the way the pups create their dynamics and their pecking order. Who's dominant. The big bully on the block is generally the most dominant one as I mentioned and the omega pup is the one on the bottom. This is how they establish the hierarchy of the pups that integrates now with the other wolves in the pack. They get away with a lot of this butting in because as youngsters the older wolves take good care of them. They slide in and there's really not any confrontation until such time as they grow up and want to take somebody else's position above them. They have little confrontations once in a while. They never go as far as to injure one another within the pack.

This is what you look like right now. This is a full grown Gray Wolf. I'm going to show you some pictures quickly here that are going to be a little bit startling. Normally, the wolves are roughly 85-100 pounds. This guy is around 100-120 pounds. He's a big boy. This is canis lupus irremotus. This was the smaller wolf that was in where we live. The area in the mountains where we live in Idaho. This was taken adjacent to a school in Salmon, Idaho. This, to me, was a lone wolf, number one. And number two, it was not the Gray Wolf species. It was a subspecies that occupied for years up until about 1930 when they were basically extirpated in there. What we were told was, the justification for bringing these wolves in from Canada was that we didn't have any native wolves there. They knew they did. And they knew if they brought the bigger wolves in sooner or later they'd kill these guys off or run them out. So, they again lied to the court saying, "Oh no. There's no viable population of irremotus in the area that's why we have to bring them in from Canada."

Loner wolves when they go off, this is some of the things that changes their behavior. They're apt to hybrid breed. They're out there by themselves and they need more protection. Protection for all wolves is in the pack. If they have some female or domestic dog out there they can breed with, they can build up their own pack. You now have a hybrid pack. In addition to that, we have people out there that are breeding hybrid wolves and releasing them into the wild. The excuse that we get sometimes — more often they don't want to talk about it at all — is. "Oh, by the way, domestic dogs and wolves interbred 12,000 years ago so we're just doing the same thing." They're not doing the same thing. They're taking an animal that has no ability to survive in the wild and sticking him in the wild and saying it's okay to do that.

Eastern Coyote or coywolf. I believe this is pretty much what you might see around western New York and places like that, if you're looking for them.

Here's a Timber Wolf pup. I want you to look at how the mother is caring for them and nurturing them and encouraging them and so forth. That's the way that it works in the wild. This is a domestic wolf litter. There's a significant difference in how they're behaving. These wolves look literally — I hate to use the word — scared. Why is it? Because they do not have this guidance and this help. What we do is when we breed them and we try to put them in the wild, we're putting them out there with this deficiency.

Recently, a study was done — I say recently because it just was reported — a man and his wife took a pair of wolves, bred them, raised them in their own pen, nurtured them, and so forth 'til they were full adult wolves. They said they tried to stay away from them so they didn't habituate them but how do you feed them without putting your scent on the food or walking in the pen and dropping it in there. They knew. So, now they take them out into the wild and say that we're going to release these wolves. We know it's a whole pack. They'll be able to survive.

One of the things that the wolves do to survive is hunt. They're not called predators for nothing. They're not called apex predators of the canine species for nothing. These wolves wouldn't hunt. They had to collect them all back and bring them back to the pen because they weren't raised with the same type of caring and nurturing that wild wolves are. So, every time you find somebody that says, "Oh, by the way, we're just going to release these wolves because there's none here and we like them and we want them to survive." They're not doing anything but killing their own "pets."

Now, I want you to take a real close look at this. This is a black German Shepherd and actually a Canis lupus columbianus, which was the wolf that they brought in from Canada. If you take a close look at it you can see distinct differences in this wolf. If you look at the eyes you see they're very, very piercing, goldish-yellowish color, eyes. The wolf as opposed to the dog is the only animal that has those eyes.

Survival means roles and authorities and responsibilities in the pack. They have additional roles as they grow older. They have a place in the family. If one female wolf and one male wolf go off to find their own, then those that are in the pack readjust or accommodate that loss of those responsibilities and those skills.

Food is the main dictate of the size of the pack. If there's not enough food as the pups start to grow, pups will die. So, where they may have six to seven to eight pups in a litter they may wind up within a year — lack of food, lack of attention, whatever it is — to only having three or four survive. That we know happens. We've touched on this. They do not.

This is actually a video that we shot in Yellowstone Park. I'm going to let this run in its entirety but I would like you to kind of look at the whole of everything that's going on in this video. This video will show you the total aspect of a wolf pack relative to taking down prey, consuming the prey, allowing other birds and so forth to visit, even a Bald Eagle. And then enters the picture the coyote. There is sound but I don't know if we can get it to you. You see the coyote at the top of the screen.

Video voice over: They've already made a kill and the male coyote moves in as usual.

Mr. Dethlefson: You're looking at the alpha wolf.

Video voice over: This time it's a terrible mistake.

Mr. Dethlefson: You're looking at teamwork.

Video voice over: Flush with their new power the Sloughs set out to deliver a message.

Mr. Dethlefson: Dead, right now.

Video voice over: They show no mercy.

Audience member: How did they get that video?

Mr. Dethlefson: Now, what you saw was the complete package of the wild environment where the wolf pack is. You saw the signal being given from the alpha wolf. "I don't want this in here. He's invading our territory. And by the way, you younger guys can run faster. It's your job to chase him down. And, oh, by the way, if you've got him down I'll come in and make the kill." It's all part of the education within the pack. You also saw crows or ravens and magpies out there. Scavengers pecking away at the carcass. Even a Bald Eagle who just didn't want to catch anything figured, "Well, I'll dine here, too." That is typical of pack behavior. This is a twenty-two-wolf pack. Twenty-two in Yellowstone. You heard the man say they're fresh off their successes in there. What happened was is that the Druid pack owned the territory where you just saw the Sloughs. The Slough pack was bigger and more aggressive and came in, fought with the Druid pack, killed the alpha male and female of the Druid pack and drove off the rest.

Now here's where Casanova comes in. Casanova was one of the wolves that lived on the periphery and he'd say, "Yeah, you're about eighteen years old and I need a girlfriend." And he'd sneak into the pack where the Druids were but the alpha male, for some reason, accepted all his incursions and would only chase him off so far and then let him go. What happened was when the alpha male and female were killed by the Slough pack and the rest of the pack went off, he said, "It's my opportunity where I can be the big guy on the block. I can be Casanova and I can own the pack." So, he goes off with them. We still don't know how many litters he produced while he was in charge. Then another pack came in, a smaller pack came in. He got older. The smaller pack came in and they attacked him. But he was a Casanova, he wasn't a fighter, he was a lover. So, what he did was he left. He left the rest of the pack to this new pack that came in. Twenty-two wolves later this pack then goes back into where the Sloughs were and took their territory back over.

Now, I'll talk really quickly. We're going to go through this real fast.

Eight factors leading to human attacks. Basically, as we mentioned, food. They have a little bit of food they're going to go into pastoral areas which is residential urban areas interface. They're going to find whatever it takes to survive. They're going to act bolder. They're going to pursue livestock. I had some friends who were ranchers in the Big Hole, Montana. I went over to visit them one day. We went out to look at the herd. The herd that they had was about 800 head in this particular pasture. They were all backed into the corner of the fence where the fence is joined to make an angle, a 90 degree angle. They were all backed in there. I said, "You know, how come?" He said, "Because there's wolves in the area and they know it." So, what they did was they bunched up and they turn their heads in a defensive posture. Wolves know they do this. Where do you think the wolves came in? Not facing them. They came in from the flanks and the rear. They lost several head of cattle that day.

Conditions that cause human attacks. Habituation of the wolves and acclimatization to where they're used to the environment. They lose that survival instinct because they now figure they're superior to it and there's no risk or there's a minimum risk to it.

"Unpredictable encounters" is where you may be walking there with your dog and you walk into their territory which they'll defend. When you dog is out there running in front of you, you're probably not going to see that dog alive again.

This is a comparison of a Western Coyote to a wolf. That's not a very big wolf. That wolf weighs about ninety pounds but he's half again the size of a Western Coyote. These two animals were both taken. By the way, this wolf was a wolf that went out of Yellowstone Park and moved out towards Little Bighorn Battlefield in southeast Montana. That's where it was shot.

This is an Iberian Wolf from Spain. Originally I put that on there because it's the best picture I can show you that tells you what the mouth looks like on a wolf. Those canine teeth and the bite of a wolf is 1,500 pounds per square inch. I don't know if you want to get yourself laying under a weight that's 1,500 pounds or not but that's 1,500 pounds per square inch. About 700 to 750 is the bite pressure of the biggest domestic dog. Another thing about the wolf. If you notice the coloration of the lips, it's dark. It's not pink. That's a characteristic of a wolf.

Here's what happened to several of these dogs. I know these people. These were lion hounds. The owners were out actually working, training them and they wound up going into an area, the Yaak area in Montana where there was a wolf pack. They had to catch up to the hounds because they run. Hounds just run. They hunt lions. They tree lions. They sit there and they bark. This is what's left of his hounds when he got to them. They'd run into wolves. The only reason that there's not more damage is they came right behind them quickly and chased the wolves off.

This is a little different situation. It was also training of wolves. These are hounds. Again, you can see that the situation is they will take them down. They take them down because they feel they're invading. Now, what the government will tell you or their agency will, is that they will kill the dogs rather than breed with them. Packs? Yeah, I agree. Individual wolves? I don't know we had sixteen and seventeen-year-old son and he was a handful to say the least when it came to the ladies. And so, you find a situation of lone wolves is entirely different than pack dynamics. So when they tell you they don't interbreed, they do. It's not a routine thing but they will and the minute they do you wind up with a coywolf. Here you have that already.

This is a couple of kids who were out with their Dad and there was a [hunting] season out there. You can see the size of this wolf compared to the kids. The kids are out walking. I have to admit that this wolf was quite a bit larger than the wolves that they're planning on bringing in from Algonquin Park in here as I understand it. They're smaller. But these wolves when they first brought them in in 1985-1986 from Canada were much smaller than this.

Now what we're looking at here — and I'll show you another couple of pictures really quickly here — what we're looking at is a situation whereby these wolves have become the same size and as aggressive as what we call the dire wolf. The dire wolf died out after the end of the last Ice Age about 10,000 to 15,000 years ago. That wolf was nose to tail about five, five-and-a-half or maybe six feet long and stood a good six to twelve inches taller than the wolves that we had, the normal wolves we had before they brought them in.

Now this man is my size. He can't pick that wolf up. This man is 6'2", 230 pounds. That's not an 80-pound or a 90-pound wolf. What caused this was the feed, the food that they had when they came in to survive on. Yellowstone National Park had roughly 18,500 elk in the park. Way more than the park could support. Those elk, as well as the bison also, had a disease called brucellosis. Think about it. They could have brought in hunters and said, "Just shoot them." Well, remember the buffalo on the plains? They didn't want to go through that again and so their excuse for bringing the Canadian Wolf in was not clearly delineated. They wanted to bring them in because they needed to reduce the population of elk in the park. Around 2008 wolves — and they would not admit it was all due to the wolves, they would say we have Grizzly bears we have lions and so forth the problem is that their explanation doesn't hold water because they had the same wolves and coyotes and mountain lions in the park when the elk population exploded. About 2008 the elk population was down to 3,500. Now, you have to remember something. The wolves didn't just kill 15,000 elk because there was a recruitment every year the elk were having calves. So, somewhere around 13,000 to 16,000 elk were killed by the wolves in about ten or twelve years. What that did economically is it meant that hunting, which is outfitting out there and a lot of people from New York go out there and want to hunt elk and so forth. I have three friend that were outfitters that are out of business now because of the wolf impact in our area. Which I thought would be okay you could just take me, we'll do it free. They went off and found other jobs and I was out of luck.

Do wolves attack people? What do you think?

Audience member: Why not?

Mr. Dethlefson: The government will tell you, "No." They will tell you, "Oh, the wolves they're afraid of you. They won't attack you." You're right the answer is "yes." Here's eighteen conditions why wolves will attack humans. This was assembled by myself in research and evaluating wolf attacks world-wide to determine what the conditions were that created the wolf attack. I looked at some 3,900 historical record reports in particular from India, Russia, Siberia, Bulgaria, Western Europe, and North America. Initially, there was a fellow in Canada, a newspaper editor — by the way, while this was going on back in the early 1990's — he said, "Oh, wolves don't attack people. We've gotten no record of anything happening like that here. If you can prove to me that a wolf attacked somebody in Canada, I'll give you $10,000." He shut his mouth, unfortunately, at the expense of some people.

Wolves in North America during the Revolution — and this was probably the first special forces operation in the history of this country, that happened — the wolves went in on King's Mountain — they were probably Red Wolves — they went in on the battlefield in King's Mountain, Carolina, and, it's where the frontiersmen at the time, attacked the British. British tactics then, as you've probably seen in movies, was to just stand in a line and then go. When you do that with sharp-shooters it's not a good idea. What happened was the British commander had to withdraw but he had to leave his dead and wounded. The wolves came in and had a field day.

Also, the same thing happened during the Mexican War in 1845, although those were Mexican Wolves, as they say.

This is one I want to talk to you about. This couple. I will go through this as fast as I can. Patricia Wyman was a young student who had just been hired to work in this enclosure at Haliburton Forest & Wildlife Preserve. The rest of the staff had been working with a pack of wolves in an enclosure for a long time. The wolves began to see the other staff as dominant. And because the other staff was dominant, they could go into this enclosure relatively safely. They weren't dumb enough to do some things that would incite the wolves but Patricia was told, "Don't worry about it. Just go ahead in there." So, she goes in. About the third day she was there, the first time she goes in thinking it's no big problem. She turns her back on the wolves and they killed her. She had no dominance. She was an invader. The stupidity of what caused that death is unbelievable. It's because of the attitude of the "experts" not recognizing what a wolf really is or a wolf pack really is.

Sault Ste. Marie, Canada, 2006, six people on a beach. A young lady of fourteen and her sister, three. A wolf came in and attacked the six but then attacked the fourteen-year-old and the three-year-old. The fourteen-year-old had 52 stitches to put her back together again, not to mention the trauma she went through. The wolf then saw the younger one, the three-year-old and said, "You know what? That's probably a better meal." It left her and grabbed the younger lady by the arm. He then was beginning to drag her off by her hoodie and her sweatshirt. It was killed. What they found was, and they all agree that this was very, very unusual behavior, what they found was when they did the autopsy on the cadaver, this wolf, a single wolf, had been injured probably in trying to take maybe a large deer or a moose or something like that. It had a broken clavicle and broken canine teeth. And you saw the canine teeth. They depend on those to take the prey down. So, it couldn't do that. So, it changed its food. It changed its prey and this was the result of it.

Kenton Joel Carnegie is another situation as is Candice Berner here. Candice Berner is really a classic example of pack teamwork. Kenton was a geology student. He was up in this area in Canada and what was going on was it was a pack of wolves in the area and that pack was being acclimated and habituated because parts of his research party were actually throwing tidbits out to the wolves. Feeding them. What you are seeing in this picture is the wolf comes in and says, "Where is my handout? And that guy is standing there with a club." So, the wolf says, "Wait a minute. Something's unusual here." Its survival instinct kicked in. He left the area. Now, these guys set up a situation where, "Hey, I'm going to report back to the pack, you know what, these guys aren't our buddies either." So, Kenton goes out the next day by himself to do whatever research he was doing and he heads right into where the pack happened to be. Within minutes they killed him. Remember now, this newspaper guy saying, "If you can show me, I'll give you $10,000."

Candice Berner, a 32-year-old, she was a special ed. Teacher in Chignik Lake, Alaska. She has just been visiting the school there. She was also a long-distance runner. This is the path that she was running on along the waterway in that area. What happened was that she was out training after hours, so to speak. After school she went out running. What she did was, she was running — in the slide, if you look at it, from the right to the left — and all of a sudden she changed direction. We only know this because of the evidence in the snow. We don't know why. Whether she'd finished her run or she was just running back. Whether she, all of a sudden, recognized there were wolves here. But she made a fatal mistake because she didn't know any better. What she did was, she turned her back on the wolves and she ran. The chase instinct that you saw in the film kicked in to this pack. This pack was a well-coordinated team. What they did was, part of the pack was on her right flank, part of the pack was on her left flank, part of the pack chased her down the path. They hemmed her in and killed her.

The lessons that we want to take away from this is: if you're ever confronted, even by what looks like a hybrid wolf, don't turn your back. Make them face you and back away. This is proven to be a very valuable bit of information for several people. For example, in Challis, Idaho, they go out berry picking. They've been confronted by the wolves over there. It allowed a couple of people that I know to get back to their truck before the wolves got to them. But then the wolves surrounded their truck. They tried to drive away. They did drive away. They were saved. They saved themselves because they were well aware of what was going on.

This is just four more of the incidents that have happened recently whereby, as I mentioned to you, they knew what to do and they got away. The two hunters killed an elk. They got away because they narrowly knew what to do but they also had weapons. But when they fired the weapons they couldn't shoot the wolves because if they did, even under these circumstances, number one, the outfitter would have been arrested for getting them into that situation, lose his license, and number two, whoever shot them would have been prosecuted by the federal marshals for killing an endangered species.

I'm going to skip this video. What this video shows you is what we just talked about. There's two gals who were taking their dogs out in Alaska. Walking down a trail. You might call it a military road, if you want, because they ran into a pack of wolves.

Fortunately, they knew not to turn around. They knew not to run. And they knew to keep their dogs as close to them as they possibly could. And they got out of it. However there's one of their pit bull dogs that was attacked by a wolf and spent a couple of weeks in a veterinary clinic being sewn back up.

Now I'd like to talk a little bit about the diseases. (See Part Two)

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