A Statement from the President of the Foundation
I want to offer a greeting to anyone viewing the new McCleery Buffalo Wolf Foundation website. I know that if you are looking our site over, you must have an interest in wildlife and specifically have and interest in wolves. That is great, welcome.
As the current president of the foundation, I would like to offer a brief review of some of the recent events that have led me to the position of president. In addition, I want to detail some of our interim and long term goals.
I assumed the position of president after the passing of my mother, Mary Lynch. My mom passed away last spring after almost forty years of maintaining the wolves. She and her husband Jack, who passed in 2006, managed the wolf foundation with great dedication and passion. Her passing was somewhat unexpected and created a crisis in that there was no one designated to take over operations. I felt that something had to be done to ensure the stability of the wolves, so I resigned from my work and stepped into the position of president and general manager. Currently I live at the foundation facilities in Bridger Montana. My wife, Terry, stayed for the summer, but was unable to leave her lifelong carrier as a teacher of the deaf and hard of hearing. She returned to Oregon, so I live here alone for the time being to care for the wolves and the facilities. To be honest, it is a burden, but one that I feel is absolutely necessary as I feel that the wolves are a valuable resource and it is critical that their health and safety be maintained.
The next step of course is to plan for the future of these animals; therefore I would like to take a few moments to tell everyone what we are planning. First of all, when you look at the care and well-being of these animals, I think you have to ask for whom you are planning. For Terry, our board of directors and myself the paramount issue is to provide a stable lifelong home for the wolves where they are not being harmed in any way. The wolves prefer to be left alone so they can behave as closely as possible to how they would in the wild. Therefore, we feel that visitors should be kept to a minimum. The next issue is how to maintain a healthy breeding population. We feel that the first step to ensure a healthy population is to genetically identify all the individuals. With this in mind, we plan to take saliva samples from all of the wolves as soon as possible to evaluate the pack and relocate wolves within the facility to maintain their future health. Once this has been done and the population is secure, we will look at the long term stability of the foundation in general. Frankly, donations have dwindled over the years because many of the long term donors have passed. It may not be possible to continue with the foundations mission more than three or four more years. Finances being a very real factor that must be considered, we are going to develop multiple plans. Clearly the best thing for the wolves is to keep them together, however this will be dependent on the resources available.
At any rate, I can’t detail every aspect of managing this pack in a letter. However, I feel that it is important that anyone interested in these animals have an understanding of what our plans for the future are. Comments are welcome. Please feel free to contact us at the email provided on the contact page of this site.
Ed Wheeler – Foundation CEO President
When the foundation was created by Dr. E.H McCleery in the nineteen twenties its primary goal was to preserve buffalo wolves or plains wolves, which are native to Montana and Wyoming. The buffalo wolves were hunted nearly to extinction between the late nineteenth century and the early twentieth century, but the foundation successfully kept a large collection of buffalo wolves alive and reproducing over for more than eighty years
Today we carry on Dr. McCleery’s dream into this century; keeping the wolves alive, and hopefully ensuring that the legacy of Dr. E.H McCleery is the prolonged survival of the buffalo wolves