Issues of concern to people who live in the west: property rights, water rights, endangered species, livestock grazing, energy production, wilderness and western agriculture. Plus a few items on western history, western literature and the sport of rodeo... Frank DuBois served as the NM Secretary of Agriculture from 1988 to 2003. DuBois is a former legislative assistant to a U.S. Senator, a Deputy Assistant Secretary of Interior, and is the founder of the DuBois Rodeo Scholarship.
Friday, September 16, 2016
‘They are absolutely huge:’ Wolves attack in Northern Saskatchewan as animals lose fear of humans
From the dining hall, it sounded like a fight — a midnight scuffle between feuding workers at the Cigar Lake uranium mine.
A security guard hopped into her vehicle to break it up, and for a split second, her headlights illuminated a scene that was anything but a fist fight: a wolf with its jaws around the neck of a 26-year-old kitchen worker.
The truck’s arrival spooked the wolf away and the security guard, who has declined media interviews, sprang out to provide first aid.
An adult gray wolf can easily bite through even the thickest moose bones; a fleshy human neck provides little obstacle. A few more seconds and the worker likely would have been dead instead of recuperating in hospital.
“A single wolf basically pounced on him,” was what a mine representative told the press. Wolf attacks aren’t supposed to happen this way, but wolves don’t exactly act as expected in Northern Saskatchewan.
On the very rare occasion that a North American wolf bites a human, the animal is usually rabid or surprised; a hiker startling a wolf feeding on a moose carcass, for instance.
But this wolf had apparently lain in wait for the young mining camp worker. The average Canadian hunter can spend their entire lives in the wilderness without spotting a wolf. That’s why nature writers usually describe the animals with such adjectives as “elusive,” “shy” or “secretive.”
But at Cigar Lake, Facebook posts have documented wolves following hikers, wolves making themselves “visible.” Several workers have reported having wolves tail their work crews and keep watch on them from distant ridge lines. “They are absolutely huge … they have no fear of man and come into the job sites often at night,” said former Cigar Lake worker S.J. Rowe in a message to the National Post...more