To the editor:

The Grant County Conservationists have kept a low profile since the "Save the Todd" debacle occurred. Prior to the devastating Shake Table Fire that destroyed the Todd Creek drainage and 14,000 acres of timber and habitat, the Grant County Conservationists, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife and a private landowners were told unless stewardship efforts were employed to reduce the fuel load, a fire could burn the entire watershed. However, those efforts were thwarted with the rallying cry of "Save the Todd."

"The Todd is now running mud" stated Stan Benes recent Malheur National Forest supervisor.

The beaver and now wolf, mentioned in a recent Blue Mountain Eagle, are cited as "keystone" species. It is another pipe dream that will result in more damage to the environment.

I have seen where beaver have dammed a small stream and then killed every quaking aspen tree for a quarter mile. Elk cannot be blamed for that.

Our ancestors killed wolves for the same reason that we will again kill them. They decimate big game populations, cause financial loss and ruin to livestock producers and are a threat to humans.

Flood irrigation returns more water to the ground in an efficient manner than beavers could possibly do.

Hunters pay license and tag fees and control big game populations with the resulting funding to perpetuate all wildlife.

Until the Grant County Conservationists take responsibility for the devastation caused by their misguided efforts to save the Todd, maybe they shouldn't take up anymore ill-considered environmental causes.

Dave Traylor

John Day

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