Vail Daily letters to the editor |

Vail Daily letters to the editor

Vail Daily staff
Vail, CO, Colorado

Fences dangerous for wildlife

There are literally millions of miles of fences crisscrossing our country. While fences are usually necessary for containing domesticated animals or marking boundaries, many of the fences in our area are deadly to wildlife.

Unfortunately, these fences are built on private property and there are no county, state or national regulations regarding the type of fences that can be constructed.

The Division of Wildlife has an excellent publication, “Fencing with Wildlife in Mind,” which I wish more ranchers, farmers and other individuals would consider before building (or replacing) fences on their property.

Wildlife must travel and migrate to find food, water and shelter each season. Fences often become cruel deaths to such wildlife, including deer, elk, moose, birds, foxes and other animals moving through our areas.

Participate in The Longevity Project

The Longevity Project is an annual campaign to help educate readers about what it takes to live a long, fulfilling life in our valley. This year Kevin shares his story of hope and celebration of life with his presentation Cracked, Not Broken as we explore the critical and relevant topic of mental health.

The fences that cause problems for the wildlife are those that are too high to jump (including even lower fences placed on inclines), too low to go under, are difficult to see, have wires spaced too close together and/or are not maintained. Even when the animals are able to clear the fences, many suffer the scars from the cuts of the barbed wire.

The worst fence for wildlife is the woven wire fence. It’s sad to see that this is one of the most popular fences in our valley. You just need to drive up Highway 131 from Wolcott to Steamboat or along Highway 6 between Wolcott and Eagle to see woven wire fence bordering the land. These fences can completely block young wildlife from crossing. Being separated from their mothers, they eventually starve to death or become prey. If they try to jump, they risk being caught on the fence and hanging until they starve as well. Birds, including owls and grouse, fly into these and other fences, breaking wings and also becoming entangled.

A study of wildlife mortality by the Utah State University in 2005 found:

– On average, one ungulate (hooved animal) per year was found tangled for every 2.5 miles of fence.

– Most animals (69 percent of juveniles and 77 percent of adults) died by getting caught in the top two wires while trying to jump a fence.

– Juveniles are eight times more likely to die in fences than adults.

– Mortalities peaked during August, when fawns are weaned.

– Woven-wire fence topped with a single strand of barbed-wire was the most lethal fence type; ungulate’s legs are easily snared and tangled between the barbed-wire and rigid woven-wire.

– 70 percent of all mortalities were on fences higher than 40 inches.

– On average, one ungulate was found dead next to, but not in fences, every 1.2 miles of fence; most were found next to woven-wire fence.

– 90 percent of carcasses found near fences were fawns separated from their mothers and unable to cross.

Recently, I asked a local rancher why he had just placed an environmentally unfriendly fence in my area. His statement was that was how they had been building fences for the last 100 years. Thank goodness that many other things that were acceptable 100 years ago are no longer tolerated today. For more information go to:

Patricia French


What is that?

I have read Dr. Glasser’s commentaries with great interest. He seems to be expert on the issue of anthropogenic global warming.

There is a question that I have wanted an answer to for some time and hope that Dr. Glasser can shed some light on the subject.

According to some of my friends, all the climate models used by these climate scientists predict that greenhouse gas-caused global warming will generate a hot spot in the troposphere (whatever that is) at an altitude of 10 to 12 kilometers. My friends say that this proves that whatever is causing the warming, it’s not greenhouse gases. Are they correct? Can you help me?

Aggie Chastain


I just don’t believe it

You have done your readership a disservice by disabling the comments section of your on-line edition. It provided an instant outlet for opposing viewpoints. Now that it is gone, I noticed an increase in rebuttal style letters published in the paper edition. That’s not entirely bad, though the space could used for entirely new content instead.

I implore you to reactivate comments. If you did, then I could put this comment on your latest Valley Voices titled “Fools deny global warming,” by Scott Glasser.

So if you disagree you are gullible, naive and easy swayed by nonsense. You are also intellectually dishonest, as Mr. Glasser put it. Does that imply we lie to ourselves if we don’t buy into the danger of global warming?

If you looked at what happened in Japan with the most devastating nuclear disaster in world history and the BP oil catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico, I suggest global warming is a minor environmental problem in comparison to nuclear fallout and the continuing oil spill.

I have to agree with Sherman Brown’s letter that human activity-induced global warming has been discredited by the East Anglia University scandal. That does not necessarily mean global warming is not happening, but it shows a biased agenda to distort the data to serve their purpose. That purpose is to exploit the natural process of the carbon cycle for profit and to control all human activity down to what kind of light bulb we use. That’s what this is really all about. Al Gore is the world’s biggest hypocrite telling us we have to reduce our carbon footprint while he pays $30,000 a year in utility bills for his mansions and flies a private jet.

Buying carbon off set credits has to be the biggest scam ever pulled. Al Gore should follow his own propaganda if he wants us to. He should sell his private jet and all his holdings in Occidental Petroleum. Then he should bulldoze his mansions, plant trees in its place and move into solar powered straw bail house with a windmill and geothermal heat exchangers. Then he should buy a diesel-powered vehicle and convert it to run on used french fry oil. Then he can tell us how to live by his example. Pollution from his private jet is a more serious threat to us than global warming.

Just for a minute, I would like all of you to consider that it does not matter if human activity is causing global warming. Maybe we are causing it, maybe not and perhaps a third choice would be we are piling on to a natural process driven by the sun’s own cycle.

Whatever is actually happening, follow the money and you will see the real motivation behind the global warming carbon trading scam. It’s greed and an unquenchable thirst for power to control us.

I was once on board with human activity induced global warming theory. One of the people that convinced me was certainly not Al Gore and his “Convenient Lie” movie. It was certainly not East Anglia University scientists. It was Professor Lonnie Thompson of Ohio State University and his ice core sample research from around the globe. He makes the most compelling case yet for human activity-driven global warming. Here’s the professor’s link:

I doubt that global warming is a serious problem compared to genetically engineered food, the catastrophic nuclear disaster in Japan and the ongoing BP oil spill. We don’t have to worry about Iran getting a nuclear bomb because the real threat has proven to be domestic nuclear power plants built near known earthquake fault zones.

Dave Kraft

Support Local Journalism