[F]rom Thorry Smith's interview with Arizona Game and Fish for the agency's internal investigation. Talking about Emil McCain, he described McCain pulling a scat out of a bag. "He said -- it's kind of hush hush. And I assumed that wasn't because we were doing our snaring up there it was because he had published a paper in the Journal of Mammalogy and that wasn't in the methods."So, not only does it appear that Mr. McCain was heavily invested in getting a collar on Macho B, but perhaps he was already manipulating his movements. Not disclosing this in the methods section is a big, fat mistake.
Later in the transcript, Smith takes on the point more directly. He said of McCain "His point in that paper was that there was a male jaguar that may have been residential in the United States. He didn't say that he put female jaguar there maybe to keep him that way. So that might blow that paper out of the water."
The Arizona Game and Fish Department has published its critique of the Office of the Inspector General report on the Macho B investigation. The AZGFD is quick to point its fingers at the errors of the OIG report and to distance itself from Emil McCain.
Interestingly, and perhaps revealingly, the AGFD specifically calls out the OIG out this quote, from an unidentified FWS biologist:
"he was intimidated by [AGFD employee] Terry Johnson and his attitude that the AZGFD could do whatever it wanted in Arizona."The AGFD response:
"Not only does this quotation prove nothing more than the state of mind of its anonymous speaker, the use of the quote invites the reader to draw the inference that AGFD's leading jaguar conservationist and, by extension, AGFD itself, are scofflaws who blatantly disregard federal wildlife laws when it suits them."Uh, yeah. That's kinda what we think, but not just because of the OIG report. Because of interference with releases of endangered species in Mexico, because of trying to block critical habitat designations, because of, oh... all kinds of things really. Terry Johnson may have a black eye, but it isn't the OIG that punched him. The OIG just pointed it out.
If anyone is interested in the latest he said/she said on whether or not the snare that trapped Macho B was baited, you can read this piece at the AZ Daily Star. We're with Janay on this one, but you can decide for yourself.
Dear Spanish lynx,
Please watch where you walk. And be on alert for a shortish, blondish, bearded fellow who apparently has no shame or integrity.