Posted by Buffalo Folks <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> :

Greetings!  Things have been busy at Camp: a variety of trainings; 
workshops; eagle monitoring; and field patrols have kept the 
volunteers busy.

Thus far, only one buffalo has migrated out of the Park. The  MT. 
Department of Livestock has decided that the old bull can't even have 
a little winter peace.  They have been harassed him and they also 
assaulted one of our volunteers with a snowmobile.  Story at: It is 
ridiculous that a bull buffalo at this time of the year poses any 
risk of transmitting brucellosis--Montana's so-called reason for 
hazing and slaughtering buffalo. It is further proof that Montana has 
only one agenda: zero tolerance of any buffalo leaving Yellowstone, 
and want complete control of the herd. Montana's policy of 
controlling buffalo movement and population levels in the guise of 
brucellosis management has become painfully apparent in their recent 

Even the U. S. Government has publicly stated that Montana is acting 
irrationally and without scientific basis. They say that Montana no 
longer wants to try and work on this issue with the State as a 
co-lead agency. They recently filed a petition in Federal Court to 
dissolve the Memorandum of Understanding that bound the federal 
agencies with Montana as co-leads on the Longterm Buffalo Management 
EIS in Montana and Yellowstone. Even though the feds compromised 
their preferred alternative considerably in the direction that the 
State wanted (in defiance of more than 60,000 comments on the DEIS 
that called for less stringent management techniques), Montana 
Governor Marc Racicot still publicly insists that this isn't good 
enough, and that a compromise is possible. Given the DOL's current 
management philosophy, nothing will suit the state until they have 
eliminated the possibility that wild buffalo can roam on Montana's 
soils. This is where we need your help.  10 minutes of your time and 
2 phone calls/letters can make all the difference. See below...

The folks at Nightline were in camp last week, and there will be a 
piece on Nightline during the week of the 7th as well as a piece on 
A&E later in the month.  We'll send ya' a note when we find out 
exactly when.

Thanks for all your great letters and donations!  We are only a 
thousand dollars away from meeting our anonymous donor's match!  A 
hearty thanks also goes out to Community Foundation of Jackson Hole 
as well as the Pegasus Foundation and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young 
and Honor the Earth for supporting the Buffalo Field Campaign! 
Thanks to all!

For the Buffalo!

You also can check out some new info on our web site. Particularly, 
check out Dan Brister's article on Negligent Endangerment at:


Please take a sec and make a phone call or write a letter before February 4th.

Phone/ Write:
Montana Governor Marc Racicot
Capitol Building Helena, Montana 59620
Phone: (406)444-3111 Fax: (406)444-4151
or the citizens' advocate at (in-state) 800-332-2272 or (406) 444-3468
Marc hasn't figured out how to use Email yet.  But his Press 
Secretary has and can be reached at: mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED] and can 
probably pass it along.

Please CC: to Mark O'Keefe; State Auditor
Capitol Building Helena, Montana 59620
phone : (406) 444-2040, or (in- state only) 1-800-332-6148.
email: mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]

Mark O'Keefe is the leading Democrat contender for the Montana 
Governor's seat. Due to the term limits Montana enacted in 1992, most 
elected state officials can only hold office for eight years. This 
also portends well for the Montana State Legislature, that has been 
disproportionately controlled by the "good old boys,"--those folks 
that voted down buffalo legislation in the last session that would 
have gone a long ways towards easing the situation for the buffalo.

2nd call or letter to:

USDA Secretary Daniel Glickman
(Telephone: 202-720-3631; Fax: 202-720-2166)
200 A Whitten Bldg., 1400 Independence Ave. SW,
Washington, DC 20250
e-mail: mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]

Please CC to: President Bill Clinton
Pres. Bill Clinton; email: mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]
The White House mailing address is:
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Washington, D.C. 20500
Phone: (202) 456-1414 Fax: (202) 456-2461

"The National Park Service and the U.S. Forest Service plan to do over the
next 10 years what the State of Montana has done to the buffalo for the
last 10 years... and more" said Darrell Geist, Executive Director of 
Cold Mountain, Cold Rivers a Missoula-based environmental and human 
rights group. "2000 holy cows will continue to range on public lands 
at taxpayer expense while
buffalo are denied that range and killed for trying to migrate there."

Talking Points:
* The State of Montana is incompetent in their management of the 
buffalo and should not be co-lead on management decisions.  Wildlife 
biologists, not cattle ranchers should be making management decisions 
about the last population of wild buffalo. Trained field biologists, 
not off-season and unemployed highway workers  (that the DOL hires) 
should be managing the animals in the field.

* Federal lands should be used for wildlife as intended instead of 
cows.  Bald Eagles (like the nesting pair at Horse Butte adjacent to 
the Horse Butte Capture Facility) and the last wild buffalo should 
take precedent over leases to out of state ranchers.

* This unique wild herd of buffalo should be given protected status 
and managed accordingly.

* Tax payers' monies should not be used to continue this mismanagement.

* Wild buffalo should be protected at all cost... for the benefit of 
the Yellowstone ecosystem as well as our children's and our cultural 

* Brucellosis is a myth.  Why is it that over 100,000 elk that also 
carry brucellosis are allowed to wander freely while the 2,000 
surviving buffalo are harassed?  The superior genetics traits of the 
herd, those of resistance to brucellosis as well as genetic memory of 
traditional migration to winter grazing lands are being sacrificed 
due to non scientific based management.

* The citizens of the U.S. will not idly stand by and continue to 
watch this slaughter.

Write from your heart!  for the buffalo!
Together we can be heard....

Note the Federal Court hearing on dissolving the State-Federal 
agreement on the Longterm EIS was moved to 2/4/00.

There will be a rally in Helena on Friday.  Write 
[EMAIL PROTECTED] for more info.

Federal judge orders officials to meet over bison dispute

HELENA (AP) - A judge has ordered state and federal government 
officials to show up in court later this month to discuss their 
stalemate over developing a mutual plan for managing diseased 
Yellowstone National Park bison.

U.S. District Judge Charles C. Lovell of Helena on Wednesday said he 
will oversee one more attempt by the two sides to resolve their 
differences over what the management plan should look like. He 
scheduled the hearing for Jan. 28.

He also agreed to rule on the state's request for a court order 
preventing the U.S. Departments of Interior and Agriculture from 
proceeding with development of the plan without the state's 

"Because the Yellowstone National Park bison freely roam from time to 
time across the jurisdictions of both parties, any lasting solution 
to the management of this herd seemingly requires the participation 
of both parties," Lovell wrote.

His order comes about a week after the state asked Lovell to block 
the federal government from pulling out of negotiations with Montana 
over a long-range blueprint for handling bison when they leave the 
park in search of winter forage.

Work on the plan has been under way for four years and that effort 
should not be wasted by the federal agencies continuing on their own, 
the state argued.

The federal government asked Lovell on Dec. 13 for permission to 
abandon the cooperative effort, saying it was fed up with the state's 
steadfast opposition to allowing bison to remain outside the park.

Many of the animals are believed to carry brucellosis, which can 
cause cows to abort. The livestock industry fears the disease could 
be transmitted to their cattle and that would require expensive 
testing before beef could be shipped out of state.

Shooting became the primary method of controlling the migrating 
bison, a practice that caused a national outcry after 1,100 were 
killed in the winter of 1996-97. Hazing has been used more in the 
past two mild winters.

The state, frustrated with what it perceived as a reluctance to help 
resolve the bison problem, sued the federal government in 1995. As 
part of a settlement of the suit, both governments agreed to work 
together on a long-term management plan.

Lovell called it disappointing that the two governments have 
apparently reached an impasse and federal officials want to proceed 
on its own.

"Where so much progress has been made and a goal is almost in sight, 
I do not believe that the United States should take this unilateral 
action without the court first hearing and resolving Montana's 
objections and motions," Lovell said.

He ordered a Jan. 28 hearing and told the state and federal 
governments to have officials there with the power to make binding 
agreements. Most likely, that would be Gov. Marc Racicot and 
Yellowstone Superintendent Michael Finley, he said.

In addition to considering the state's request to block federal 
withdrawal from the planning process, Lovell said he will supervise a 
closed-door meeting for both sides "to make one final effort to 
resolve these differences."

Both governments must submit to him by Jan. 21 confidential letters 
describing the issues over which they disagree and suggestions for 
reaching a settlement, he said.

To find out the "in the field" info directly from Buffalo Field 
Campaign go to:
Getting the word out is critical and BFC is the only group working 
365 days a year in Yellowstone with the buffalo.

New Compilation Buffalo Video Available

Cold Mountain, Cold Rivers has a compilation video available on the 
Yellowstone buffalo. Plan B, The Buffalo's Alternative is a brief 
scientific advocacy piece on long-term management strategies to allow 
buffalo to roam free in Yellowstone. Buffalo Bull is a more in-depth 
documentary on the Yellowstone buffalo slaughter. Where the Buffalo 
Roam profiles the field campaign and their efforts to protect the 
Yellowstone buffalo herd. To purchase the video send a check or money 
order for $20 to Cold Mountain, Cold Rivers; PO Box 7941 Missoula MT 
Elders and educators can receive a video at a discount please send a 
query to mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED] or call our office at 

Getting the word out is key... please take a moment and look at your 
local paper and send us contact info for the editor.  Both email and 
fax are appreciated! please send contact info to 

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