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UPDATED: Bear Bites Hiker At Great Smoky Mountains National Park

May 18th - 21:09pm | Skeptical

The article says he "did not have any food in his tent" (when he was attacked).  Maybe so - but I'm willing to bet there had been food in or on the tent - or on his clothing - recently.  Black bears generally don't attack unless they (or their cubs) feel threatened - or they think they've found something to eat.  Since the hiker was asleep at the time - there's no way the bear th

National Park Service Director Impressed With Maine North Woods, National Park Proponents Hopeful

May 18th - 21:05pm | Anne Rush

Having this land as a National Monument/Park in my backyard is an amazing gift and blessing to the people of Northern Maine! Thank you Quimby Family

National Park Service Supports Delisting Of Grizzly Bears...To A Point

May 18th - 20:55pm | ecbuck


May 18th - 17:24pm | Lee Dalton

It would be nice if you would cite your sources.  I tried to find the information you claim, and was able to find a couple of sources that might be theirs, but if so, then your claims have some problems.

May 18th - 14:20pm | ecbuck

(See my posts above.) Your post above was opinion from an anti grazing group.  My number comes from the BLM and Forest Service reported grazing numbers devided by total cattle.  And could it be "picked up" by other producers, perhaps, but at a higher cost to them andthus to the consumer.  

May 18th - 13:44pm | Lee Dalton

Where did that 10% number come from?  The total amount of beef grazed on federal lands is actually about 3% to 4%.  A number so low that it could easily be picked up by other beef producers who do not graze on federal lands with little or no impact on beef prices.  (See my posts above.)

May 18th - 09:34am | ecbuck

'Rick B.  Charge them the "market rate" and they ones that will pay are the consumers.  According to this BLM piece, close to 10% graze on BLM land alone.  Anyone who thinks increased costs on 10% of the supply won't have an impact on cost is completely ignorant of of economics.  Though I do believe that they should pay at least the cost of the program.

May 18th - 09:17am | Rick Smith

"So what Rick? The vast majority of grizzlies are not from ID, MT or WY either.  In fact the cattle population of those states is as much if not a higher percentage of the total US population than grizzlies from those states are of theirs."  What? You talking about Alaska and Canada?

May 17th - 22:26pm | Lee Dalton

I know our Esteemed Comrade, being a staunch conservative socialist, will simply ignore any attempt to document anything he might want to ignore, but for the more sensible readers here is some information that is easily found online: HOW IMPORTANT ARE THESE WESTERN PUBLIC RANGELANDS IN TERMS OF OVERALL US BEEF PRODUCTION?

May 17th - 19:11pm | Rick B.

Fine. Charge them market value for the grazing instead of the meager rates that made the Bundy's feel so entitled.

May 17th - 14:02pm | ecbuck

So what Rick? The vast majority of grizzlies are not from ID, MT or WY either.  In fact the cattle population of those states is as much if not a higher percentage of the total US population than grizzlies from those states are of theirs.  

May 17th - 10:59am | Rick Smith

Well, ec, let's see.  The vast majority of beef that graces your table does not come from ID., MT., or WY.  Here are the stats from the beef industry:

May 17th - 08:16am | ecbuck

You act like teflon dodging everything thrown at you. No Rick B, unlike you, Rick Smith & Lee, I haven't run from anything.  You ask I question, I will answer.  You ask for substantiation of a stated fact, I will provide it. You make baseless claims, I will point it out.  

May 16th - 23:50pm | Rick Smith

People on NPT are on to you, ec. 

May 16th - 23:36pm | Rick B.

Sorry, Eric. This is where your "baseless" whine doesn't matter. BS is his opinion about your opinion. It ain't an uncommon opinion around here, and he doesn't have to justify a subjective impression.  How can you dare to accuse others of fleeing? You act like teflon dodging everything thrown at you.

When Did Dancing In The Thomas Jefferson Memorial Become A Crime?

May 18th - 20:35pm | Anonymous

When you go against Authority, expect the battle

Sexual Harassment Chapter At Grand Canyon National Park Leads Superintendent To Retire

May 18th - 19:20pm | Survivor

What about all the people who lost their jobs under Super Dave?

May 18th - 10:22am | trailadvocate

Mr. Shattuck, it's pretty obvious you have passed the "purity" test.   Maybe you can explain how you've become so pure.  I do have to confess that some of your vitriol I have harbored toward the immediate predecessor to Dave Uberaga, Steve Martin.  From what I've experienced Dave was by far, more liked and respected than his predecessor.

May 18th - 07:31am | Feltthepain

It is about time that the actual responsible people get held accountable instead of scapegoats. Now what about the Director giving his buddy preferential treatment all these years and clearly kicking the can down the road. 

May 18th - 01:31am | Dick Shattuck

"How about turning your snark on your Presidential candidates" Totally irrelevant. We have the right to expect honestly from these appointees, no matter how incompetent the candidates are.   "Dave was referred to as Super Dave by those in the rafting community"  

May 17th - 23:57pm | trailadvocate

Don't know about Rainier but here at the Canyon Dave was referred to as Super Dave by those in the rafting community and many others.   How about turning your snark on your Presidential candidates and clean up your own nest.  That's about where these comments belong.  

May 17th - 19:36pm | Dick Shattuck

Wow. This guy is really a piece of work.   Engage in unethical practices. Act dumb about it. Make a bundle. Get exposed, and suffer only a slap on the wrist. Get rewarded with a new job and a $7000 raise.   Our tax dollars (not) at work.

May 17th - 17:56pm | Megaera

Yup.  He had a *lousy* reputation up here at Mt. Rainier.  Good riddance to bad rubbish.

May 17th - 13:11pm | Fried Fed

Did Dave Loeffler get to keep his job?

May 17th - 11:10am | tahoma

Good riddance!  'Teflon Dave' should have been retired at least a decade ago.  In an agency with any real transparency and accountability, he would still be making license plates:

Court Records: Canadian Man Cited For Picking Up Yellowstone Bison Calf

May 18th - 18:16pm | Me

Are you an idot, they should have charge him more than 50 dollars.....buffalo meat is more exepsive than that

May 18th - 13:52pm | Kurt Repanshek

Actually, I think the last speeding ticket I got they did tack on a processing fee. Everybody's looking for that extra dollar...

May 18th - 13:42pm | Don J

Yes - the fine was low - I'm just amazed they tack on a processing fee to go along with it.

May 18th - 13:41pm | Don J

When a speeding ticket is issued - you pay the fine - they don't tack on another fee to process it. Yes - don't do the crime and you dont pay the fine. But this guy wasn't trying to comit a criminal act either - he "thoght" he was doing the right thing and being compassionate.  

May 18th - 12:50pm | Rick B.

It isn't a scam if you don't screw up bad enough to be cited. You feel the same way about your speeding tickets no doubt.

May 18th - 12:43pm | Kurt Repanshek

Don, with some ranchers figuring a bison calf is worth $1,400 gross, I'd say the fine is pretty low when you consider the calf had to be put down.

May 18th - 11:53am | Don J

So not only does he get fined but a $25 processing fee as well.  What a scam - they give you a ticket and then they want $25 to process it.

May 18th - 08:56am | Rebecca Latson ...

I agree with Debra.  The death of that bison calf would have fed birds of prey as well as other wild animals living within the park.  The national parks have these do-not-touch rules for a reason. It doesn't matter whether or not the guy's "heart was in the right place", he broke a posted rule within the park.  He should have never touched the bison calf in the first place.

May 17th - 16:14pm | Debra

But by moving the animal, even if would have eventually died, prevented other animals from benefitting from it's  death. There is a reason it is called the "circle of life". One animal's death can feed other animals. Not to mention, maybe, the herd would have come back for it later. When are people going to learn that you are supposed to look but not touch in the National Parks.

May 17th - 15:17pm | Carole Cimarron

His heart was in the right place. The mother had provably rejected it before Mr. Kassam interfered. I don't think he should have been fined for trying to save the life of a baby animal. Euthanization was more humane then freezing to death.

Op-Ed | The True Meaning Of Soda Mountain: The White House Is Giving Away Our Public Lands

May 18th - 17:29pm | Lee Dalton

argalite, I just tried your source and found it costs something like $35 to access the full text.  But part of their summary was instructive:

May 18th - 17:17pm | Rick B.

Jack Clifford - Kurt's got a nice website here, and most of us regulars do our  best to svoid racist political screeds.

May 18th - 15:45pm | argalite

You want a paper showing the loss of birds to cats compared to wind power and buildings?  Try and refute this one: Direct Mortality of Birds from Anthropogenic Causes Scott R. Loss,1 Tom Will,2 and Peter P. Marra3 And don't try and tell me that these people were bought off, because I know they were not.

May 17th - 15:32pm | Jack Clifford

Face it, everything Obama touches gets ruined. On purpose. What the heck does he care about what some old, evil slaveowners or empire builders (ie white) guys did way back a long time ago?

Former Effigy Mounds National Monument Superintendent Pleads Guilty To Theft Of Artifacts

May 18th - 14:43pm | Brian Runge

What most fail to understand about the mounds that were "desecrated" by the construction of the boardwalks is that the entire area had been plowed and farmed for nearly 100 years before the boardwalks were built.  The entire area that the parking lot and visitor center sits on was once covered in mounds.

Trails I've Hiked: Half Dome, Yosemite National Park

May 17th - 23:51pm | Rick B.

Congratulations, Stephen Hanson. Sounds like a lifetime experience and well earned.   I'm only 8 years older than you, but have sufficient infirmities to acknowledge that I will never be able to accomplish what you have here. I'm very glad to be able to read accounts like yours to appreciate some of what I will miss. Thanks very much for writing here.

May 17th - 21:13pm | Stephen Hanson

I have made two trips to the cables in 2016 as a 59 year old man. I trained very hard for this hike. The first trip in July, we got the the cables but the weather turned us away. All I could think was Sh*t! I have to make this hike again. The second time, we got a last minute permit, and left Happy Isles at midnight on the night of the Blood Moon in September.

Heading To Arches National Park For Memorial Day Weekend? Expect Crowds

May 17th - 20:20pm | paulAZ

Ever heard of surge pricing? It's not rocket science. 

Yellowstone National Park Staff To Visitors: Don't Be Stupid

May 17th - 14:58pm | Charles Darwin

It wasnt' the bison calf that needed to be euthanized...

May 17th - 12:10pm | Steve from CO

I think it is time to issue every park ranger a hammer and a set of nails.  Anytime someone is found trying to take a selfie or otherwise too close to wildlife, the phone/camera is smashed with the hammer and nailed to a board near the entrance or visitor center with a sign that says, "This is what happens to Violators!!!", in every language possible, of course.

May 17th - 09:27am | Tom in Wisconsin

The calf had to be euthanized because it could not be quarantined and cared for for the length of time necessary to then give it to a sanctuary.  Brucellosis exists in the park and state and federal laws require quarantining of all animals that could be carriers.  Transporting the calf without quarantine would break several laws and possibly infect domestic herds.

May 16th - 23:22pm | Layra

Visitors get multiple warnings when the enter the park and all throughout the park. Warnings are literally all over. These come in many different languages and are full of illustrations in case anyone can't or doesnt take the time to read. I agree, fines should be huge! 

May 16th - 22:25pm | J. Wilson

What these tourist did to that poor calf was stupid and misguided. But I don't understand why the calf had to be euthanized. Isn't there an animal sanctuary that could have taken this poor baby?

'Not A Pretty Picture': Biscayne National Park Works To Remove Underwater Debris

May 17th - 12:59pm | [email protected]

Just spend an hour at any south Florida boat ramp and the reason for all the stupidity will become crystal clear. LOL

Park Advocates Concerned By NPS Plans To Revise Fund-Raising Guidelines

May 17th - 11:25am | tahoma

Maureen Finnerty was the best NPS superintendent I worked under.  I'm even more impressed that she's leading this challenge to JJ's dubious and dangerous 'Director's Order'.

National Parks Traveler's Essential Park Guide