Episode 2 of 4 – The American War on Wolves: A Historical Extermination


in this episode

Welcome back to Episode 2 in our 4-part series: The American War on Wolves.

In this episode we are going to go back in time to the mid-1800s when Western Settlers moved into the Great Plains, the Southwest, and the Northwest and began forever changing these ecosystems.  Native American communities and roaming bison would be replaced by Western outposts and grazing livestock.

What followed was a systematic extermination of wolves and other wild predators, led by the collaboration of private economic interest, namely the livestock industry, and government help, namely the US Biological Survey which would become the US Fish & Wildlife Service.

In order to better understand the state by state battleground for wolf recovery happening today, we must first know how we got here.

Two incredible guests join us for this episode.

The first is Michael Robinson, whose book Predatory Bureaucracy drives a lot of the information here.  He’s a historian and member of the Center for Biological Diversity, the organization again that this series is benefiting. Each time you listen or ask someone to do the same, we are donating $1 to their efforts at SaveOurWolves.org.

The second is Josh Specht, a professor at the University of Notre Dame and author of Red Meat Republic.

Thank you to Michael and Josh for their contributions and the work they do.

Enjoy this 2nd episode!  If you missed the first one, go back and give it a listen as it will ground you in some of the sociology, family structure, and behaviors of wild wolves.  Coming up in Episode 3 next week, we will look at modern Recovery and Reintroduction programs, both successful and unsuccessful and what we can learn from them.

And again, please please go to SaveOurWolves.org and sign the petitions to support the fight to protect this species.  And remember every listen of this podcast triggers a donation so spread the word!