Among the first acts of the Pilgrims at Plymouth Bay Colony was to set a bounty on wolves: first a penny for a pelt, then four bushels of corn for a mere scrap of fur. Succeeding generations of Americans followed the Pilgrims' lead, until by the middle of the 20th century the wolf was driven to the verge of extinction nearly everywhere outside Alaska. Rick McIntyre, a seasonal park ranger at Denali, Yellowstone, and other wolf-populated areas, has spent years documenting the behavior of living wolves. Here he turns to the sad task of documenting America's destruction of the wolf, a legacy that we may finally be able to undo with the reintroduction of Canis lupus
to the wild.
From Publishers Weekly
The war began on a small scale within a few years of colonial settlement and eventually escalated to all the 48 contiguous states. Between 1870 and 1930, extermination of predators, especially wolves, became national policy carried out by a federal agency, the U.S. Biological Survey (now the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service). McIntyre (A Society of Wolves) has collected material from government reports, journals, newspaper and magazine articles and traditional Native American stories to illustrate our attitude toward wolves over three centuries. This anthology includes pieces by James Audubon, Theodore Roosevelt, Ernest Thompson Seton and Aldo Leopold-tales of outlaw wolves, hunters and trappers. These tales and agency reports are gruesome reading. In the last 50 years, attitudes have changed; with the passage of the Endangered Species Act (1973), wolves began to make their way back. The final section reports on their reintroduction in national parks. This is a fine companion to McIntyre's earlier books. Photos.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.