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Letter: Sign's relocation prompts questions

| November 18, 2009 11:00 PM

Dear Editor:

I remember as a lad how awestruck I was seeing numerous signs reading, “Grizzly Bear Habitat,” throughout the north Idaho panhandle and northwestern Montana. One area in particular, Libby Creek, while panning for gold, I observed one of these signs.

On my most recent trip to this area, some 19 years later, I was struck with awe once again when I realized that same sign was missing. Although saddened that I could not revisit my youthful hope of seeing a wild grizzly, I pressed on.

Approximately five to seven miles up the road, my enthusiasm was once again ignited by a new grizzly bear habitat sign. Even though the trip ended without sighting a wild grizzly, I thoroughly enjoyed my Libby Creek venture.

Back home one evening, my thoughts returned to Libby Creek and the fact that the grizzly bears habitat seemingly shrank by five to seven miles. Bothered by this disturbing thought I found myself doing research on the matter. It seems that the mining interests of some large companies are currently in a struggle to overcome the EPA and environmental regulations. Their plans include erecting and operating a large mill in this area, a plan that could not take place in grizzly bear habitat.

With the way our economy stands today it seems the poor grizzly bear is jobless and has no source of income. It’s sad to think that the plight many Americans are facing is also trickling down to our local wildlife. So, I must ask, has the Forest Service foreclosed on Libby Creek’s grizzly bear habitat and given poor Mr. Grizzly a notice to vacate?

If so, it seems we have once again left a true American patriot behind homeless and broke. I wonder if anyone else has come to this same conclusion and remembers that original sign.

Bruce A. Newton

Spirit Lake, Idaho