Dear Senator Klobuchar,
My name is Dr. Ken Nordberg. I am 81 years old and I’ve been a Minnesota deer hunter 71 of those years. After retiring from Dentistry in 1980, I became an outdoor writer. I am well known for my hunting-related studies of white-tailed deer (plus black bears and wolves) in Minnesota and elsewhere in the U.S. since 1970. My primary whitetail study area since 1990 is located in northern St. Louis County. I have written more than 700 magazine articles and published thirteen books based on my studies since 1988 and I am about to publish two more books (I once sat beside your father at a book signing). I’ve been a feature writer, writing about whitetails and whitetail hunting for Midwest Outdoor Magazine throughout the past 25 years.
My reason for writing to you is to ask you to not oppose the delisting of Minnesota’s grey wolves from the Endangered Species List. Decades of opposition to delisting wolves in the past on the premise “wolves within specific geographic regions should not be delisted when the greater population is still endangered” has allowed grey wolves in northeastern Minnesota to become overabundant to the extent that what was once one the best regions in Minnesota to hunt white-tailed deer (with populations up the 22 deer per square-mile) has become a state region least populated by whitetails. In some areas in the Arrowhead there are now as few as 2–4 deer per square-mile, according to recent MDNR surveys.
Though brain worms, carried by unaffected deer, are blamed by our MDNR for the current decline of moose in northeastern Minnesota (moose are declining everywhere in North America even where whitetails are not found), recent studies have proven grey wolves kill more of our moose than any other cause. Moreover, because young wolves can no longer find areas large enough to establish new home (hunting) ranges in northeastern Minnesota, they are now seeking ranges southward into urban and farm areas beyond the Twin Cities and eastward across Wisconsin into Upper Michigan. Young wolves cannot find new ranges across the border in adjacent Ontario because wolf numbers there are now at a historic high. The truth of the old axiom, “where predator numbers are high, numbers of their primary prey will be low and where predator numbers are low, numbers of the primary prey will be high,” couldn’t be better proven than by current populations of wolves, deer and moose in northeastern Minnesota.
Whatever can be done to try to halt the decline of moose and restore numbers of deer in our Arrowhead Region is seriously handicapped by our MDNR’s inability to control wolf numbers. To allow this dilemma to continue longer would certainly have serious consequences far into the future.
Again, please do not oppose the delisting of Minnesota grey wolves.
Dr. Ken Nordberg