Hunter Takes Record Florida Gator

Florida has a new record alligator thanks to Tres Ammerman. Mr. Ammerman's gator was taken on Lake Washington and measured at 14 feet and 3 inches. Florida Today has a nice write up about the hunt and the hunter.

Being the final night of the season, Ammerman had only until one hour after sunrise Nov. 1 to snag a gator. He was hunting with his nephew T.J. Schaus and friend Sam White.

Mountain Lion Attacks Car?

Some strange photos over at KRTV Helena Montana. According to the brief story a cougar attacked a parked Mazda causing a considerable amount of damage. From the photos it appears that the mountain lion chewed on and tore up the lower bumper/grill body panel as well as leaving numerous tracks on and around the vehicle.

Grizzly Chasing Bison Photo: The Back Story

Over the last few months there has been a photo of a badly injured buffalo running from a brown bear down a street circulating around by email, websites, and social networks. Like other "viral" photos there seemed to be more than a few explanations of what happened before and after the photo. Finally we can get the correct story, has an article running about Alex Wypyszinski the photograph behind the shot.

The sight of such an injured bison alone is rare, but what Wypyszinski saw next was once in a lifetime.

Welcome to "The Western Hunter" Blog

Hi, my name is Mark Richman, and I'm going to be writing The Western Hunter Blog, a new feature here on  I just wanted to take this first opportunity to introduce myself and give you an overview of what I'll be covering here in the future. 

Montana Hunters Kill Wolf in Self Defense

Two hunters were surrounded by six to eight wolves when trying to pack out an elk kill in the Flathead Valley region of Montana. According to initial reports the hunters shot into the air to spook off the wolves and eventually abandoned the elk kill. When trying to vacate the area, the hunters were followed by the wolves and one wolf was killed.

The Missoulian has an article up on the incident. From the article:

After making lunch and drawing the horses nearer to the meat to begin loading the elk quarters in a pannier, Appleby said his horse, named "Shotgun," spooked. When he turned around, he saw between six and eight wolves "running at us 30 to 40 yards away," according to a written statement he filed with FWP.

North Dakota Ballot Measure 2 Fails

57% of ND voters voted against Ballot Measure 2 which would have banned high fence hunting in the state. We posted an entry about North Dakota Ballot Measure 2 here.

The Wall Street Journal has a write up on the results.

"They outspent us," Mr. Kaseman said in an interview. His group, North Dakota Hunters for Fair Chase, led the campaign on a shoestring budget, spending only about $25,000, he said.

Montana Voters Strike Down Outfitter Licenses

By a margin of 53.8% to 46.2% Montana voters approved I-161, which both raises non-resident licenses fees and eliminates outfitter sponsored licenses. We posted an entry about I-161 here.

The net result is that in 2011, the 5500 outfitter-sponsored licenses will now become a part of the general lottery system.

Mountain Lion Attacks Teen With Car Trouble

Getting a potential flat tire at 1:00 AM is a bad deal. Fighting off a mountain lion attack, while checking the tire, is horrifying. Luckily due to some quick thinking on Kendra Rutter's part she is alive to tell the tale.

The Pikes Peak Courier View has Kendra's story:

Early in the morning of Oct. 17, Reid-Rutter was driving home from a babysitting job. She stopped her car on Teller County Road 51, about 8 miles from Divide, to check her tire. At that time she reported that she was attacked from behind by a mountain lion.

Game Cam Used as Bait

Apparently baiting isn't just effective on the "lesser" animals. Police used a novel baiting technique when hunters had complained of stolen game cams and tree stands in an area near Mariemont Ohio. They made a fake game cam loaded with a GPS tracking device to capture the thief in the act.

Chupacabras Probably Just Mangy Coyotes

In a blow to supernatural wildlife loremasters everywhere, it turns out that Chupacabras are probably just coyotes with a severe case of mange. If you haven't heard of Chupacabras before you're not alone, they are a mysterious creature that started showing up in Central America in the mid-90's and recently there have been reported sightings in Southwestern U.S.

In an interview on NPR, Dr. Barry O'Connor talks about why he thinks the mysterious "goat suckers" are probably just mangy coyotes.

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