Wild Horse Warriors Rustling Cows out of Wild Horse Country

Posted November 30, 2009 by compassionate1
Categories: Uncategorized


By Richard Cockle, The Oregonian

November 23, 2009, 6:00PM

cattlerustling2.nov.24.2009.JPGRichard Cockle/The OregonianDuane Neuschwander, foreman of the isolated Juniper Ranch on the boundary of Malheur and Harney counties, talks to Malheur County sheriff’s Deputy Bob Wroten about the disappearance of 33 cattle. Wroten, a former rancher and the son and grandson of lawmen, became a deputy four years ago. He and others hunting for a group of cattle rustlers say the thieves know the land and the culture.
JORDAN VALLEY — They were spotted from a small airplane, two cattle rustlers on horseback hazing 125 white-faced cows across Malheur County‘s forbidding “empty quarter” in Oregon’s far southeast corner.

The men, sighted last spring, were pushing the stolen herd south through a high-desert tapestry of chaparral, manzanita, juniper and sagebrush. They looked like ordinary cowboys.

The pilot descended for a closer view, but the men didn’t look up, said brand inspector Rodger Huffman of the Oregon Department of Agriculture. The pilot finally had to break away, and the Malheur County Sheriff’s Office didn’t hear about the sighting until a week later.

‘ION Country’
has reckless, dangerous past

In the 19th century, Oregon’s southeast corner was part of “ION country ” — where Idaho, Oregon and Nevada meet — and some say it was among the most dangerous regions of the Old West.

Its gold and silver


Ranchers Crying “Foul” Over Law Suits to Protect Earth, Animals, etc.

Posted November 28, 2009 by compassionate1
Categories: Uncategorized

Budd-Falen Law Offices, L.L.C.

Karen Budd-Falen 1

Franklin J. Falen 1

Brandon L. Jensen 1, 2

Kathryn Brack Morrow 1 ,2, 3

300 East 18th Street

Post Office Box 346

Cheyenne, Wyoming 82003-0346

Telephone 307/632-5105

Telefax 307/637-3891



admitted in Wyoming 1

admitted in Colorado 2

admitted in New Mexico 3


To: Interested Parties

From: Karen Budd-Falen

Budd-Falen Law Offices, L.L.C.

Date: September 15, 2009

Re: Environmental Litigation Gravy Train

Below please find a press release/Letter to the Editor regarding the amount of litigation

filed by environmental organizations and the amount of attorneys fees these groups

have received from the federal government for these cases. I am sure that you will be as

shocked by these numbers as I have been.

Consider these facts:

! Between 2000 and 2009, Western Watersheds Project (“WWP”) filed at least 91

lawsuits in the federal district courts and at least 31 appeals in the federal

appellate courts;

! Between 2000 and 2009, Forest Guardians (now known as WildEarth

Guardians) filed at least 180 lawsuits in the federal district courts and at least 61

appeals in the federal appellate courts;

! Between 2000 and 2009, Center for Biological Diversity (“CBD”) filed at least

409 lawsuits in the federal district courts and at least 165 appeals in the federal

appellate courts.

! In addition, over the last 15 years, the Wilderness Society has filed 149 federal

court lawsuits, the Idaho Conservation League has filed 69 federal court lawsuits,

the Oregon Natural Desert Association has filed 58 lawsuits, the Southern Utah

Wilderness Association has filed 88 lawsuits and the National Wildlife Federation

has filed 427 lawsuits.

! In total, the eight environmental groups listed above have filed at least 1596

federal court cases against the federal government.


! Every one of the groups listed above are tax exempt, non-profit organizations.

Every one of those groups listed above receives attorney fees for suing the federal

government from the federal government.

! These statistics do not include cases filed in the administrative courts, such as

BLM administrative permit appeals before the Office of Hearings and Appeals or

Forest Service administrative appeals. These statistics only include federal

district court cases.

On the other end, these same environmental groups are receiving billions of

federal tax payer dollars in attorney fees for settling or “winning” cases against the

federal government. Accurate statistics have not been kept by the Justice Department

or the federal agencies, thus there is no accounting for the total amount of tax dollars

paid, however, we were able to uncover these facts:

There are two major sources for attorney fees that can be paid to plaintiffs that

“prevail” in litigation either by winning a case on the merits or by the Justice

Department agreeing that the group “prevailed” in a settlement by achieving the

purpose of the litigation. One source of funding is called the “Judgment Fund.” The

Judgment Fund is a Congressional line-item appropriation and is used for Endangered

Species Act cases, Clean Water Act cases, and with other statutes that directly allow a

plaintiff to recover attorney fees. There is no central data base for tracking the payment

of these fees, thus neither the taxpayers, members of Congress nor the federal

government knows the total amount of taxpayer dollars spent from the Judgment Fund

on individual cases. The only information regarding these fees that is available is:

! In fiscal year 2003, the federal government made 10,595 individual payments

from the Judgment Fund to federal court plaintiffs for a price tag of


! In 2004, the federal government made 8,161 payments from the Judgment Fund

for $800,450,029.00.

! In 2005, 7,794 payments were made from the Judgment Fund for a total of


! In 2006, the federal government made 8,736 payments from the Judgment Fund

for $697,968,132.00.

! In only the first half of fiscal year 2007, the federal government made 6,595

payments from the Judgment Fund for $1,062,387,142.00.

! In total, $4,716,264,730.00 (that is billion with a “b”) in total payments were paid

in taxpayer dollars from the Judgment Fund from 2003 through July 2007 for


attorney fees and costs in cases against the federal government.

The second major source of payments to “winning” litigants against the federal

government is the Equal Access to Justice Act (“EAJA”). EAJA funds are taken from the

“losing” federal agencies’ budget. Thus, for example, the attorneys fees paid under

EAJA come from the “losing” BLM office’s budget. That is money that could be used for

range monitoring, NEPA compliance, timber projects, archeology and cultural

clearances and other agency programs. Within the federal government, there is no

central data system or tracking of these payments from the agency’s budgets. The only

statistics we were able to compile are as follows:

! Between 2003 to 2005, Region 1 of the Forest Service (Montana, North Dakota,

northern Idaho) paid $383,094 in EAJA fees.

! Between 2003 to 2005, Region 2 of the Forest Service (Wyoming, South Dakota,

Colorado, Nebraska, Oklahoma) paid $97,750 in EAJA fees.

! Between 2003 to 2005, Region 3 of the Forest Service (Arizona, New Mexico)

paid $261,289.85 in EAJA fees.

! Between 2003 to 2005, Region 4 of the Forest Service (southern Idaho, Utah,

Nevada) paid $297,705 in EAJA fees.

! Between 2003 to 2005, Region 5 (California) of the Forest Service paid $357, 023

in EAJA fees.

! Between 2003 to 2005, Region 6 (Washington state, Oregon) of the Forest

Service paid $282,302 in EAJA fees.

! Out of the 44 total cases in which the Forest Service paid EAJA fees between

2003 and 2005, nine plaintiffs were NOT environmental groups and 35 payments

went to environmental group plaintiffs.

We also tried to track the fees paid to environmental groups in certain federal

courts. For example, in the Federal District Court for the District of Idaho, over the last

ten years, WWP received a total of $999,190 in tax dollars for “reimbursement” for

attorney fees and costs. Of the total cases filed by WWP in the Federal Court in Idaho,

19 were before Judge Winmill; eight of those cases resulted in a decision on the merits

with WWP prevailing and with the total attorney fees being awarded of $746,184; six of

the cases were settled by the federal government with a total attorney fees still being

awarded of $118,000. WWP won one case but attorney fees were not paid. WWP lost

six cases. There were two cases in which the documents indicated that the federal

government agreed to pay attorney fees, but the payment amount was kept confidential

from the public.

Whenever people say ‘We mustn’t be sentimental,’ you can take it they are about to do something cruel. And if they add ‘We must be realistic,’ they mean they are going to make money out of it.
-Brigid Brophy

Friends of Equines FOES of Equine Slaughter
Wont You Join Our “Industry Accountability” Campaigns?

Gathered & Gone (Missing) Is the BLM Secretly Killing Them?

Posted November 24, 2009 by compassionate1
Categories: Uncategorized


Sue Wallis to Host Denmarks Annual Dolphin-Kill

Posted November 18, 2009 by compassionate1
Categories: Uncategorized

Tags: ,

In an effort to improve trade relatons with Denmark, Congress-woman Sue Wallis will be hosting that country’s annual dolphin-kill event. It is her hope to be able to work out a contractual arrangement whereby American Horses can be shipped to Denmark to be slaughtered and made into steaks,…much the same as they do their dolphins. Guess her message in hosting the event is to prove that she is NOT afraid to get blood on her hands. Cut and paste the link below into your web browser to see pics of what Sue will be doing in Denmark next year.


BLM Responds to FOIA Request

Posted November 17, 2009 by compassionate1
Categories: Uncategorized

Several weeks ago I made a FOIA Request to the BLm for certain documents relating to the Seaman, White River and Caliente Gathers.  I asked specifically for the numbers of horses (and/or burros) gathered in each individual herd, and hereis what they said;

Caliente Herd Areas 

Applewhite – Est. Population 9 – Gathered 9

Blue Nose Peak – Est. Pop 9 – Gathered 9

Clover Creek – Est. Pop 53 – Gathered 58

Clover Mts. – Est. Pop 71 – Gathered 77

Delamar Mts. – Est. Pop. 91 – Gathered 99

Little Mts. – Est. Pop. 11 – Gathered 11

Meadow Valley Mts. – Est. Pop. 9 – Gathered 17

Miller Flat – Est. Pop. 17 – Gathered 28

Golden Gate, Seaman & White River Range

Golden Gate & Seaman –

Golden Gate & Seaman Est. Pop – 182

Gathered – 197

White River – Est. Pop 168

Gathered 182


Also requested was the location and brand numbers of all horses in holding from these gathers; the response was this, from the Ridgecrest Field Office;

“To the best of my knowledge, all wild horses gathered in the BLM Ely District during the 2009 season were transported to the short-term holding facility at Ridgecrest and no other. Our facility has processed 15 White River horses as of Nov. 6, 2009;

White River Horses Prepped as of Nov. 3, 2009;

09182713 – HM1AEACBG

09182714 – HM1AAAAHG

09182715- HM1DCADHG

09182716 – HM1EEEFHG

09182717 – HM1ACACHG

09182718 – HM1AEBDED

09182719 – HM1AAAABL

09182720 – HM1AAADHD

09182721 – HM1CAAAHL

09182722 – HM1AAAABD

09182723 – HM1AAAABD

09182724 – HM1AEACBG – white patch on butt

09182725 – HM1CCCCFG

09182726 – HM1AAAAAL

09182727 – HM1AAAAAG

The Public Trust Doctrine

Posted November 3, 2009 by compassionate1
Categories: Uncategorized


Public trust doctrine From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search Environmental law Theory Earth jurisprudence Intergenerational equity Polluter pays principle Precautionary principle Public trust doctrine Sustainable development Specific issues Asbestos Brownfield land Illegal logging Poaching · Unlawful fishing Mitigation of global warming International environmental law Wildlife Enforcement Monitoring System War and environmental law Instruments of Environmental policy Ecotax · Market-based instruments Environmental impact assessment v • d • e The public trust doctrine is the principle that certain resources are preserved for public use, and that the government is required to maintain it for the public’s reasonable use. Contents 1 Origins 2 Application 2.1 Navigable waters 2.2 Natural resources 3 See also 4 Further reading 5 External links [edit] Origins The ancient laws of the Roman Emperor Justinian held that the seashore that were not appropriated for private use were open to all. This principle became the law in England as well. In the Magna Carta in England centuries later public rights were further strengthened at the insistence of the nobles that fishing weirs which obstructed free navigation be removed from rivers. These rights were further strengthened by later laws in England and subsequently became part of the common law of the United States as established in Illinois Central Railroad v. Illinois, 146 U.S. 387 (1892). In that case the Illinois Legislature had granted an enormous portion of the Chicago harbor to the Illinois Central Railroad. A subsequent legislature sought to revoke the grant, claiming that original grant should not have been permitted in the first place. The court held that common law public trust doctrine prevented the government from alienating the public right to the lands under navigable waters (except in the case of very small portions of land which would have no effect on free access or navigation). In subsequent cases it was held that this public right extended also to waters which were influenced by the tides regardless of whether or not they were strictly navigable. This concept also has been found to apply to the natural resources (mineral or animal) contained in the soil and water over those public trust lands. [edit] Application This doctrine has been primarily significant in two areas: land access and use, and natural resource law. [edit] Navigable waters It is most often invoked in connection with access to the seashore. The law differs among the fifty states but in general limits the rights of ocean front property below the mean high tide line. Massachusetts and Maine (which share a common legal heritage) allow private ownership as far as the mean low water line but allow for public rights to fishing, fowling and navigation (with the necessary permits). These two states are the most restrictive of public rights and represent the exception. Most states allow free access to the intertidal zone for walking, swimming, sunbathing, etc. This does not always include the right to cross private land to reach the shore but prevents private owners from excluding the public below the mean high tide line. This line is calculated as the average high tide line of a 14.1 year cycle which means in practical terms that neither property owners nor the public are likely to be able to identify its precise location. The burden of proof therefore falls to the property owner as it would be trespassing for the public to willfully cross above the mean high tide line but not to miscalculate its location. See also related issue: Navigable servitude [edit] Natural resources The doctrine has also been used to provide public access across and provide for continued public interest in those areas where land beneath tidally influenced waters has been filled. In some cases, the uses of that land have been limited (to transportation, for instance) and in others, there has been provision for public access across them. The doctrine has been employed to assert public interest in oil resources discovered on tidally influenced lands (Mississippi, California) and has also been used to prevent the private ownership of fish stocks and crustacean beds. In most states, lakes and navigable-in-fact streams are maintained for drinking and recreation purposes under a public-trust doctrine. [edit] See also Public trust Public good Public space Public property Freedom to roam M. C. Mehta v. Kamal Nath [edit] Further reading Sax, Joseph L. (1970). “The Public Trust Doctrine in Natural Resource Law: Effective Judicial Intervention”. Michigan Law Review 68 (3): 471–566. doi:10.2307/1287556. Slade, David C., The Public Trust Doctrine in Motion. 2008. [See: http://www.ptdim.com%5D [edit] External links An academic article discussing the history of the public trust doctrine and applying it to wireless spectrum James L. Huffman, Ph.D., “Fish Out of Water: The Public Trust Doctrine in a Constitutional Democracy ” Issues in Legal Scholarship, Joseph Sax and the Public Trust (2003): Article 6. “Restoring The Trust: Water Resources & The Public Trust Doctrine, A Manual For Advocates” by the Center for Progressive Reform, September 2009 Retrieved from “http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_trust_doctrine” Categories: Property law | Environmental law | Public law http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_trust_do

Livestock v. Wildlife / Resolving Conflicts

Posted November 3, 2009 by compassionate1
Categories: Uncategorized

University of Arkansas ∙ School of Law ∙ Division of Agriculture NatAgLaw@uark.edu ∙ (479) 575-7646 An Agricultural Law Research Article Conflicts between Livestock and Wildlife: An Analysis of Legal Liabilities Arising from Reindeer and Caribou Competition on the Seward Peninsula of Western Alaska by Harry R. Bader & Greg Finstad Originally published in ENVIRONMENTAL LAW 31 ENVTL. L. 549 (2001) http://www.NationalAgLawCenter.org CONFLICTS BE1WEEN LIVESTOCK AND WILDLIFE: AN ANALYSIS OF LEGAL LIABILITIES ARISING FROM REINDEER AND CARIBOU COMPETITION ON THE SEWARD PENINSULA OF WESTERN ALASKA By HARRY R. BADER’ AND GREG FINSTAD” The remarkable, but not well understood, migratory inclination oj caribou have precipitated a crisis among the rural, Alaska Native villages located on the Seward Peninsula in western Alaska. Over a century ago, reindeer were imported to this remote country ]rom Eurasia. The intent at the time was to bring about a stable economic activity that would be both ecologically sustainable and culturally compatible with the Yupik and Inupiat peoples that live in the region. Successful management oj the Western Arctic Caribou Herd by the Alaska Department oj Fish and Game has resulted in an expanding herd population that is now migrating into reindeer ranges. Consequently, the Native herders have suffered grievous economic hardship as caribou and reindeer intermingle. This Article discusses the potential legal liabilities and duties ojthe state ojAlaska, Jederal agencies. and tribes associated with the reindeer and caribou competition. Although Native American herders may be able to sue the state or Jederal government based on tort, takings, or Indian trust doctrine, the Article suggests that these actions would not likely result in compensation Jor the reindeer herders. The state has tremendous discretion in the management oj caribou and is protected ]rom litigation by sovereign immunity in discretionaryfunctions. This Article concludes that the best opportunity Jor herders to receive assistance may be through a statutory mechanism instituting a co-management regime. I. INTRODUCTION 550 II. REINDEER AND CARIBOU MANAGEMENT IN ALASKA 55I A. Reindeer Management…………………………………………………….. 55I B. Caribou Management 554 • Chair, Department of Natural Resources Management, at UnIversIty of AlaskaFairbanks; Ph.D. expected 2002. Yale University School of Forestry and Environmental Studies; J.D. 1988. Harvard University Law School; B.A. 1985, Washington State University. .. Acting Director, Reindeer Research Program in the College of Natural Resources Development and Management, University of Alaska-Fairbanks; B.S. 1981, University ofAlaska (Wildlife BIology). [549] 550 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 III. REINDEER AND CARIBOU COMPETITION………………………………………….. 556 IV. POTENTIAL LEGAL LIABILITIES AND OBLIGATIONS 557 A. Tort LiabilityJor Wildlife-Caused Damages 559 1. Failure to Warn oja Krwwn Danger 561 2. Artificial Conditions 562 B. Takings Doctrine and the Management ojWildlife 563 1. Prohibitions on Killing Depredating Wildlife……………………. 564 2. Destruction ojPrivate Property by Wildlife as Government Taking 565 C. State Immunity Under Discretionary Functions Doctrine…………. 567 D. State Wildlife Responsibilities Under the Public Trust Doctrine 569 E. Federal Trust Responsibilities to Native Americans 569 F. National Park Service Duty to Protect Caribou 572 G. Federal Agency Obligation to ProvideJor Subsistence Opportunity 573 V. CONCLUSION 575 I. INTRODUCTION On Alaska’s Seward Peninsula, a unique social and environmental experiment is unfolding. The federal government, State of Alaska, and tribal entities are cooperating in an attempt to bridge the gap between Euro-centric economics and Native peoples’ cultural ties to the natural landscape. Here, where North America bisects the Bering Strait, nearly reaching Siberia, 29,000 reindeer graze, owned by Native American herders on 55 million acres of unfenced federal, state, and private lands. The hope is to maintain a reliable source of revenue for a remote and impoverished region in a manner that avoids environmental degradation and respects local cultural traditions. This Article discusses the legal consequences and the potential for litigation that can erupt when successful state wildlife management enables an indigenous, wild caribou herd to expand its numbers and range, thus colonizing new areas and competing on the tundra with introduced domestic reindeer. Part II of this Article is a brief introduction to Alaskan reindeer and Caribou management. Part III describes recent scientific field research, conducted by the University of Alaska-Fairbanks College of Natural Resources Development and Management, addressing the effect of caribou and reindeer competition posed by expanding caribou populations. Part N investigates potential legal liabilities and duties associated with reindeer and caribou competition on the Seward Peninsula among federal, state, and tribal sovereigns. Part V concludes by asserting that litigation is ill-suited to address the needs of these competing interests. 200I] CONFUCTS BEIWEEN UVESTOCK AND WILDUFE 551 II. REINDEER AND CARIBOU MANAGEMENT IN ALASKA Reindeer are the domesticated brethren of wild caribou. While both are taxonomically the same species, Rangifer tarandus, and can therefore freely interbreed, husbandry has brought about a few significant morphological and behavioral differences between reindeer and caribou. I Reindeer tend towards shorter stature and lighter pelage than caribou.2 Reindeer also birth their calves three to six weeks earlier than Caribou, and reindeer bulls develop longer antler stems than their caribou counterparts.3 While caribou are a wildlife species native to North America, reindeer are exotic animals introduced primarily from Russian stock.4 A. Reindeer Management Reindeer herding invokes almost every conceivable natural resource issue that defines Alaska: wilderness, national park and wildlife refuge protection, Native rights and self-determination, governmental paternalism, economic development initiatives, state wildlife management, and federal preemption of state law. All of these issues are superimposed upon the vastness of the Seward Peninsula, a remarkable land with a remarkable history. Bounded by Kotzebue Sound to the north, Norton Sound to the south, and the Bering Strait to the west, this tundra-clad country formed the land bridge between Asia and North America ten millennia ago.5 Within this vast wilderness of moose, wolves, grizzly bear, salmon, musk ox, wolverine, fox, resident raven, and migratory birds reside 6000 people.6 Approximately 4000 live in Nome, the city of gold rush and Iditarod fame.7 The rest live in small, scattered villages. Half of Nome residents and almost all village residents are Alaskan Natives of Inupiat or Yupik ancestry. B By federal law, Alaskan Natives (Inupiat, Yupik, Indian, and Aleut) enjoy preferential treatment in the reindeer industry.9 This I Gretchen M. Kerndt, History ofthe Alaskan Reindeer Industry and Its Problems with Land Use. Ownership. and Marketing, 22 AGROBOREALIS 22,22 (1990). 3 A.D. Mukhachev, Some Problems ofComparative Morphometric Characteristics of Domesticated and Wild Reindeer, in WILD REINDEER OF THE SOVIET UNION 82-86 (U.S. Dep’t of the Interior trans., E.E. Syroechkovskii ed., 1984). 5 CLAUS-M. NASKE & HERMAN E. SWfNlK, ALASKA, A HISTORY OF THE 49TH STATE 9 (2d ed. 1987). 6 NOME CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREAU, THE NATIVE PEOPLE’S OF ALASKA AND THEIR ESKIMO CULTURE, at http://alaska.net/-nome/eculture.htIn (last modified Feb. 4, 2000). BId. 9 See Reindeer IndustIy Act of 1937, 25 U.S.C. §§ 50D-500n (1994). Pursuant to the statute, the federal government condemned non-Native owned reindeer on the peninsula and began a program designed to transfer the industIy to Alaskan Natives. 2 Id. 4 Kerndt, supra note I, at 22. 7 Id. 552 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 preferential treatment 1s designed to protect Native herders from highly capitalized non-Native competitors. 1O Statutory provisions erect considerable barriers to non-Native entry into the industry. Native preferences include free grazing privileges on federal lands, grants from the United States Bureau of Indian Affairs (BlA), and restrictions upon sales of live reindeer to non-Native herders. ll The purpose of these subsidies is to stabilize the economic milieu and foster growth of a dependable source of cash, employment, and food in rural villages: however, the measures have enjoyed only mixed success.12 Today, reindeer herding is the most significant component of Alaska’s livestock industry. With 29,000 animals, there are more reindeer in Alaska than the total number of cattle, swine, and sheep combined.13 Reindeer products-ehiefly velvet antler and meatrepresent a yearly production value of $1.2 million.14 Meat is sold both in Alaska and throughout the United States as a low-fat alternative to beef. 15 Velvet antler is sold to Korean antler buyers, who either resell it to processors, or process the antler themselves. 16 The dried, sliced, and packaged product retails in the United States and throughout the world. 17 Seward Peninsula and nearby island ranges create the heart of the state’s reindeer industry.18 There are thirteen separate ranges on the peninsula; each range consists of one million acres or more.19 These ranges are unfenced, with geographic barriers, such as mountains, rivers, bays, and lakes, forming natural boundaries that differentiate ranges.20 Particular Alaskan Native families own herds within these ranges, although herds are closely associated with specific villages.21 The United States Bureau of Land Management (BLM) retains [d. §§ 500a, 500g. At first, the federal government held the reindeer in trust and loaned them to the herders. [d. § 500g: William G. Workman et ai., Economics of Reindeer Rangeland, 23 AGROBOREALIS 5, 10 (1991). 10 Terese Dillingham, Playing Reindeer Games: Native Alaskans and the Federal Thlst Doctrine, 26 B.C. ENVTL. AFF. L. REv. 649, 650 (1999). 11 See Williams v. Babbitt, 115 F.3d 657, 660 (9th Cir. 1997) (descrtbing preferences given to Native herders). 12 Lany L. Naylor et ai., Socioeconomic Evaluation of Reindeer Herding in Northwestern Alaska, 33 ARCTIC 246. 256 (1980). 13 ALAsKA AGRlc. STATISTICS SERVo & U.S. DEP’T OF AGRlc., ALASKA AGRICULTIJRAL STATISTICS 1998 22 [hereinafter AAS). 14 [d. 15 Ruthann B. Swanson & Marjorie P. Penfield, ReindeerMeat: Relationship Among Dietary Fat, Flavor, and Acceptability, 23 AGROBOREALIS 15, 15 (1991). 16 Workman, supra note 9, at 7. 17 [d. 18 AAS, supra note 13, at 29. 19 Workman, supra note 9, at 5. 20 Richard O. Stern et aI., Eskimos, Reindeer. and Land, 59 AGRIc. EXPERIMENT STATION BULL. 1, 143 (1980). 21 [d. at 104. 20011 CONFUCTS BE1WEEN UVESTOCK AND WILDUFE 553 primary management authority over grazing and is responsible for issuing permits to herd owners.22 The National Park Service (NPS). United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS). and the Alaska Department of Natural Resources exercise concurrent jurisdiction on lands owned by the respective agencies.23 The Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA)24 recognizes reindeer grazing as an objective of federal land management on the peninsula, stating that management of the Bering Land Bridge National Preserve is to provide “continu[ingl reindeer grazing use … in accordance with sound range management practices.”25 The herders have formed a collective organization called the Reindeer Herders Association (RHA). which is funded by the BlA and administered through Kawerak, a Native American organization established to assist the native people of the region.26 BlA assistance also comes in the form of loan animals. The agency makes available federally-owned reindeer to individuals to establish new herds or augment small ones.27 In addition to BlA support, the University of Alaska-Fairbanks College of Natural Resources Development and Management maintains a state-funded applied science research program designed to study tundra ecology, range management, and animal husbandry and physiology relevant to reindeer production.28 For the most part, reindeer herds are free ranging-left alone to wander and forage on the tundra without direct control.29 Herds are rounded up and corralled only twice a year. In June, roundup activities include clipping velvet antler as a renewable crop, which also assists in distinguishing the reindeer from migrating caribou.30 Antler harvests leave the animals alive without any long term health implications. During the June roundup herders also inoculate for 22 Kemdt, supra note 1, at 24-25. 23 [d. at 25. 24 16 U.S.C. §§ 3101-3233 (1994 & Supp. III 1997). 25National Park Service Organic Act, 16 U.S.C. § 410hh(2) (1994) (cross referenced by 16 U.S.C. § 3191 (1994)). 26 Stem, supra note 20, at 176. Kawerak is not a regional nonprofit corporation under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, 43 U.S.C. §§1601-1629a, 1606 (1994 & Supp. IV 1998). Stem, supra note 20, at 176. The Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act settled Native American land claims in Alaska by transferring title to 44 million acres and almost one billion dollars to specially created corporations. Alaska v. Vill. of Venetie Tribal Gov’t, 522 U.S. 520, 524 (1998). These corporations operate along regional, tribal, and v1llage lines and include both profit making corporations and non-profit public service corporations. 43 U.S.C. §§ 1606-1607 (1994 & Supp. III 1997). Shareholder membership is restricted to Alaskan Natives. [d. In the settlement, tribal councils and organizations surrendered all claims to territorial sovereignty, but maintained subject matter Jurisdiction over tribal members. Vill. ofVenette Tribal Gov’t, 522 U.S. at 532-34. 27 Stem, supra note 20, at 98. 28 [d. 29 [d. at 142. 30 [d. at 147. 554 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 brucellosis. take blood samples to detennine animal health. measure fawn weights. ear tag for individual identification. fit radio tracking collars for monitoring grazing patterns. and castrate bulls.31 Winter roundup activity in January and February chiefly involves slaughtering animals for meat production. as well as separating mingled herds and obtaining additional population counts.32 Roundups are expensive and time consuming. in part due to the remoteness of the region. Only three roads penetrate the peninsula. providing access to only two of the thirteen ranges.33 The remaining reindeer can be reached only by aircraft. boat. snow machine, or some other all terrain vehicle.34 Summer herding of the animals is usually accomplished by small helicopter.35 Fixed-wing aircraft assist as spotters to help locate herds.36 Helicopter time is the most expensive element of handling reindeer. Men from the village most closely associated with the particular range provide the labor for the roundups.37 Seasonal employment from handling reindeer can provide an important cash infusion into local village economies.38 Often, a festival-type environment accompanies the roundup activity.39 Many villagers travel to the corral to participate. watch. and enjoy the spectacle made by thousands of animals.40 Herd owners do not derive the majority of their income from reindeer herding.41 However. the industry plays a major role in some villages, achieving, at least partially. the program’s initial goals. Reindeer were first located on the Seward Peninsula a century ago because of the favorable conditions of a high quality range and an absence of significant numbers of resident caribou.42 Today. the caribou have arrived. B. Caribou Management The Alaska Department of Fish and Game successfully manages the twenty-five distinct caribou herds that grace the state. One such herd. the Western Arctic Caribou Herd. now numbers 31 Alexander K. Prichard et al., Lactation in Yearling Alaskan Reindeer: ImplicationsjorGrowth, Reproduction, and Survival 19 RANGIFER 77.78 (1999). 32 Stem. supra note 20. at 11-12. 145. 33 Id. at 143. 34 Id. 35 Id. at 147. 36 Id. at 158. 37 See id. at 119-25 (describing the role of reindeer herder as village employer). 38 Id. at 119-21. 39 Id. at 120. 40 Id. 41 Id. at 125. 42 Kemdt. supra note 1. at 22. 20011 CONFUCIS BEIWEEN UVESTOCK AND WILDUFE 555 almost 465,000 animals, comprising one of the largest wild caribou herds in the world.43 Reasons for its growth, from less than 75,000 animals in the 1970s, are not entirely understood.44 This herd migrates over 400 miles yearly between its calving grounds on the arctic coastal plain, west of the Colville River, to its winter foraging grounds, found primarily in the region between the Selawik, Koyukuk, and Unalakleet rivers. 45 State management objectives for the Western Arctic Caribou Herd include maintaining a post calving population of at least 200,000 animals to provide subsistence and recreational hunting opportunities on a sustained yield basis, protecting components of the natural ecosystem upon which the herd depends, perpetuating wild carnivore populations that utilize the caribou herd, and maintaining opportunities to view and engage in the scientific study of the herd.46 To realize these objectives, the management plan calls for monitoring the age and sex composition of the herd population.47 It also requires harvest regulation and habitat degradation prevention.48 Herd management prescriptions include minimizing conflict between caribou and the reindeer industry. 49 The Western Arctic Caribou Herd is an important resource for fifty subsistence-dependent communities in northern and interior Alaska.50 Of the approximately 23,000 animals harvested from this herd each year, all but about 3000 are taken by local rural residents.51 Alaska’s conservation of the Western Arctic Caribou Herd is a success story of international significance. Although caribou have largely been absent from the Seward Peninsula during the twentieth century, the recent growth phase of this herd has resulted in ever increasing intrusions into areas of the peninsula. 52 43 ALASKA DEP’T OF FlSH AND GAME, AERIAL SURVEY (1996) [hereinafter AERIAL SURVEY], available at http://www.state.ak.us/adfg/wildllfe/geninfo/hunting/stats/ car-mapl.glf (last modified March 8,2001). 44 ALASKA DEP’T OF FlSH AND GAME, WESTERN ARCTIC CARIBOU HERD STRATEGIC MANAGEMENT PLAN A-I (1984) [hereafter WAC MANAGEMENT PLAN]. 45 See AERIAL SURVEY, supra note 43 (map of caribou ranges). 46 WAC MANAGEMENT PLAN, supra note 44, at 1. 47 Id. at 3. 48 Id. at 3–4. 49 Id. at 2. 50 Press Release, Alaska Dep’t of Fish and Game, Alaska’s Largest Caribou Herd Declines Slightly (July 12, 2000), available at http://www.state.ak.us/adfg/wildlife/ geninfo/news/7-12-00.htm (last modified March 8.2001). 51 ALASKA DEP’T OF FlSH AND GAME, THE WESTERN ARTIc CARIBOU HERD: HAs IT PEAKED? 4 (1996) (on file with authors). 52 Id.; ALASKA DEP’T OF FlSH AND GAME, ALASKA WILDLIFE HARVEST SUMMARY 19992000, at 5, available at http://www.state.uk.us/adfg/wildllfe/geninfo/hunting/ harvest.htm (last modified March 3,2001). 556 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 III. REINDEER AND CARIBOU COMPETITION The University of Alaska Reindeer Research Program (RRP) cooperates with the Reindeer Herders Association (RHA) in an intensive effort to assess the extent of reindeer and caribou comingling. This effort involves the integration of low altitude aircraft visual reconnaissance. use of aerial telemetry and radio collars on reindeer and caribou. satellite monitoring of caribou and reindeer fitted with special GIS collars. and data collected during corralling of reindeer.53 A loss estimate. based upon expected herd growth rate. was determined using a model developed from the Davis Herd. near Nome. which is presently unaffected by caribou incursions.54 Reindeer survival rates were derived from mark and recapture methods.55 From this data. a potential reindeer herd growth rate was calculated at eight percent per year.56 Given the current reindeer population and trends, calculations suggest that. since 1987. reindeer and caribou intermingling has resulted in the disappearance of over 12,000 reindeer. estimated at a total value of thirteen million dollars. 57 In the autumn of 1996. about 90.000 caribou crossed the Darby Mountains onto the Seward Peninsula. reaching as far west as the Kougarak Road, where hunters harvested caribou for the first time in sixty years.58 Biologists fear that such incursions and contact with reindeer may alter the caribou gene pool.59 Recent research. however. suggests that hybridization is probably not a problem because hybrids are less likely to survive than pure blood caribou.60 First. reindeer calving precedes caribou calving; thus reindeer would be dropped dUring the height of spring migration, when most pregnant caribou cows are still enroute to the calving grounds.61 This would prove detrimental to both the newborn reindeer calf and the COW.62 Also. synchronous calving is a strongly selected trait in caribou. which satiates predators dUring a short 53 Greg L. Finstad et aI., Conjlicts Between Reindeer Herding and an Expanding Caribou Herd in Alaska, 13 RANGIFER (spec. ed. forthcoming 200lj (manuscript at 4, on file with authors). 54 Prichard, supra note 31. at 78. 55 rd. at 81; Gary C. White & Kenneth P. Burnham. Program MARK: Survival Estimationfrom Populations ofMarked Animals, 46 BIRD STUDY 120. 120 (1999). 56 Prichard. supra note 31. at 81. 57 Finstad, supra note 53 (manuscript at 6). 58 rd. (manuscript at 5). 59 Alfred M. Bailey & Russell W. Hendee, Notes on the Mammals ofNorthwestern Alaska, 7 J. MAMMALOGY9, 22-23 (1926). 60 Finstad, supra note 53 (manuscript at 7-8). 61 David R. Klein, Conjlicts Between Domestic Reindeer and Their Wild Counterparts: A Review of Eurasian and North American Experience. 33 ARerle 739. 745 (1980). 62 rd. 200I] CONFUCTS BETWEEN UVESTOCK AND WILDUFE 557 window of vulnerability.63 Thus. hybridized calves that are dropped outside of this window would be conspicuous and subject to predation. Another reason that reindeer and caribou hybridization may be minimized, is that male reindeer are less aggressive during the rut. and therefore, are out-competed by caribou males.64 Results from a recent genetic study supports the hypothesis that reindeer and caribou hybridization is minimal. 65 The study concluded that specific allele frequencies differed considerably between reindeer and caribou, which suggests a limited gene flOW.66 IV. POTENTIAL LEGAL LIABILITIES AND OBLIGATIONS Caribou are wildlife, and therefore, are subject to the ancient common law doctrine of ferae naturae. An animal ferae naturae cannot be owned by any individual.67 All direct legal interests in wildlife rest with the state, which manages wildlife as a sovereign. rather than as a proprietor.68 One of the state wildlife management obligations is to determine the legal method by which an individual may reduce ferae naturae to possession and thereby acquire a legal interest in the animal. 69 To reduce an animal ferae naturae to possession, an individual must perform an overt act of transformation acknowledged by the state. This transforming process may involve measures such as a) killing wildlife by prescribed means and within established seasons; b) assuming control over the animal through capture. confmement, care, and training; or c) husbandry that transforms the animal through specialized breeding and culling regimes.7o Once reduced to possession, an individual obtains legal interests in the wild animal subject to continuing state conditions.71 Under Alaskan statute, reindeer are domestic mammals.72 As free ranging livestock, reindeer remain the lawful property of a herder, so long as the owner maintains a registered brand or 63 ld. Because all caribou calves are born within a short period of time, the entire calf population is vulnerable to predation only dUring this short window. Predators can only eat a portion of the calves before becoming satiated, and once this initial satiation passes, the caribou calves are less vulnerable to continued predation. ld. 64 Klein, supra note 61, at 745. 65 Matthew A. Cronin et aI., Genetic Variation in Domestic Reindeer and Wild Caribou in Alaska, 26 ANIMAL GENETICS 427, 427 (I 995). 661d. 67 Pierson v. Post, 3 CaL R. 175. 175 (N.Y. Sup. Ct. 1805). 68 Lacosta v. La. Dep’t of Conservation, 263 U.S. 545, 549 (I924). 69 Jones v. Metcalf, 119 A. 430. 432 (Vt. 1923). 70 E.A. Stephens & Co. v. Albers, 256 P. 15, 16-17 (Colo. 1927); Koop v. United States, 296 F.2d 53, 59-60 (8th Cir. 1961). 71 People v. Zimberg. 33 N.W.2d 104, 106 (Mich. 1948). 72 ALASKA STAT. §§ 3.40.010-3.40.080 (Michie 2000). implemented by 5 ALASKA ADMIN. CODE tit. 5, § 92.029 (2000). 558 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 mark.73 Therefore, reindeer are subject to the doctrine of ferae domesticae unless a herder fails to properly exercise control over the animal.74 Ferae domesticae are those animals that are tame from time immemorial and accustomed to human association so that they submit to a person’s will.75 Although domestic animals are considered property of the individual, property is not an absolute right; it is subject to a sovereign’s police powers to promote the public safety, health, and welfare.76 For purposes of tort liability and damage compensation, the three traditional legal definitions for animals are important: 1) ferae naturae, 2) wild animals reduced to possession, and 3) ferae domesticae. Tremendous differences in liability are associated with each of these legal definitions.77 There is no personal liability for damage-causing animals ferae naturae in common law.78 Whereas, a negligence standard applies to animals ferae domesticae that possess no known dangerous propensities,79 and strict liability applies to wild animals reduced to possession, as well as to animals ferae domesticae having dangerous qualities.80 States are the primary sovereign responsible for the management of wildlife (ferae naturae).81 This authority stems from the states’ inherent sovereignty and their attendant police powers, which are attributes of sovereignty grounded in the common law. 82 Though difficult to define precisely, these police powers are extensive, elastic, and constantly evolving to meet new and increasing demands for the preservation of public peace, security, 73 rd. 74 [d. § 16.05.940(10) (Michie 2000). Domestic mammals include musk-ox, bison, elk, and reindeer lawfully owned. [d. ·'[B)ig game animal’ means moose, caribou, mountain sheep, mountain goat, feral reindeer, deer, elk, bison, walrus, or musk-ox.” [d. § 16.30.030(1). 75 Gallick v. Barto, 828 F. Supp. 1168, 1173 (M.D. Pa. 1993). 76 See Miller v. Shoene, 276 U.S. 272, 279-80 (1928) (holding that the state could destroy one class of private property to protect another class of property, which the legislature determined was of greater value to the public); Vill. of Euclid v. Ambler Realty Co., 272 U.S. 365, 387 (1926) (holding that comprehensive zoning is within the state police power); Johnson v. Atlanta Humane Soc’y, 326 S.E.2d 585, 587 (Ga. Ct. App. 1985) (holding that county·s animal adoption ordinance was a proper exercise of the state police power). 77 See Palumbo v. Fla. Game and Fresh Water Fish Comm’n, 487 So. 2d 352, 353 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 1986) (holding landowner not liable for injuries caused by nonindigenous animals not reduced to possession); Clave v. Mich. Terminix Co., 407 N.W.2d 36, 37 (Mich. Ct. App. 1987) (holding no personal liability for injuries from ferae naturae, unless the animal is reduced to possession); Holland v. Buckley, 305 So. 2d 113, 119 (La. 1974) (holding owner of domestic animal subject to strict liability). 78 Glave, 407 N.W.2d at 37. 79 Tamburello v. Jaefer, 184 So. 2d 544, 547 (La. 1966). 80 [d. at 544. 81 Mountain States Legal Found. v. Hodel, 799 F.2d 1423, 1426 (10th Cir. 1986). 82 Rogers v. State, 491 So. 2d 987, 990 (Ala. Crim. App. 1985); State v. Ivey, 474 S.E.2d 501, 505 (W. Va. 1996). 200II CONFUCTS BE1WEEN UVESTOCK AND WILDUFE 559 safety, morals, health, and welfar~.83 In managing wildlife, the state exercises its sovereignty by representing the common interests of its citizenry, and providing for the conservation and equitable use of 84 the wildlife resource. Assertions that a state may be liable for damages have commonly arisen in four general circumstances. The two less frequent claims fall under tort theory. Parties have advocated that the state has a duty to warn of known dangerous conditions, such as the presence of wildlife on the state’s property.85 Under a second tort theory, parties have alleged a state obligation to compensate for damages when the state created an artificial condition that led wildlife to cause harm.86 Most frequently, parties have claimed an unconstitutional taking without compensation arising from two situations. The first occurs when there is a prohibition against the destruction of wildlife that kills livestock.87 The second situation arises when wildlife causes a depredation of crops and forage.88 However, in all of these situations, a state may claim immunity either under the discretionary functions doctrine or under public trust responsibility.89 A. Tort Liability for Wildlife-Caused Damages If one has never asserted dominion over a wild animal, then one cannot be held accountable for the damage those animals may90 cause.Because the sovereign has no ownership, control, or possession over ferae naturae, there is nothing in the common law that indicates that a state has a duty to prevent wild animals from damaging privately owned property.91 If the state were held liable for damages caused by ferae naturae, it would lead to the impossible situation of the state having to continually impound or confine wildlife, and restrict or interfere with migration and other habits of 83 Ivey, 474 S.E.2d at 505. 84 State v. Bartee, 894 S.W.2d 34, 41-42 (Tex. 1994); &::parte Blardone, 115 S.W. 838, 840 (Tex. Crim. App. 1909). 85 See. e.g.. Carlson v. State, 598 P.2d 969, 973 (Alaska 1979) (claiming that the state had a duty to warn of the pOSSiblllty of bear attacks on state-owned property). 86 See Arroyo v. State, 40 Cal. Rptr. 2d 627, 629 (Cal. Ct. App. 1995) (arguing that state program to protect mountain lion created a dangerous artificial condition on state lands). 87 See Christy v. Hodel, 857 F.2d 1324, 1327 (9th Cir. 1988) (argUing that federally protected bears killing sheep amounted to an unconstitutional taking). 88 See Mountain States Legal Found. v. Hodel, 799 F.2d 1432, 1423, 1424 (lOth Cir. 1986) (arguing that federally protected wild horses that consumed forage on private lands effectuated a taking). 89 See discussion infra Part lV.C-D. 90 Sickman v. United States, 184 F.2d 616, 618 (7th Cir. 1950). 91 Leger v. La. Dep’t of Wildlife and Fisheries, 306 So. 2d 391. 394 (La. Ct. App. 1975). 560 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 wild animals.92 Therefore, no state is liable under common law tort for the depredations and damages to private property caused by wildlife. As the cause of wildlife conservation swept the nation at the beginning of the twentieth century, courts were frequently called upon to determine whether state protective management spawned legal liability for the damage to private property caused by rebounding wildlife populations. In Barrett v. State,93 one of the clearest decisions at the time, New York’s Court of Appeals answered this question with an emphatic “no. “94 At issue was the state’s beaver reintroduction and protection program. Noting that beaver are an important and valuable natural resource, the court concluded that the restoration program was a valid exercise of the state’s inherent police powers.95 The court determined that the state may limit private conduct by prohibiting both the harassment of beavers, and the destruction of their houses and dams.96 The court also commented that to protect a public resource of value for all , SOCiety, it may be necessary that a few citizens be disproportionately burdened, but that burden alone did not invalidate the state’s actions.97 Finally, the court concluded that because a state did not own beaver and other wild animals in a proprietary sense, the state could not be held liable for the harm caused by animals receiving state protection. 98 Federal courts have made similar rulings under the Federal Tort Claims Act.99 In Sickman v. United States,lOO the Seventh Circuit ruled that the federal government was not negligently liable for the trespass of ferae naturae because wild animals exist in a state of nature and have not been reduced to the possession of anyone. 101 Management and protection does not constitute possession; thus, the federal government was not subject to tort liabilities for the depredations of wild geese. 102 State liability, then, must rest on some other tort theory. Plaintiffs have pursued two alternate avenues. One is the idea that a state may be liable if it breached a duty to warn of a known danger caused by wildlife. A second is the argument that a state may breach its duty to the public if it creates an unnatural condition that exacerbates the danger posed by wildlife. 92 [d. 93 116 N.E. 99 (N.Y. 1917). 94 [d. at 100. 95 [d. at 101. 96 [d. 97 [d. at 100. 98 [d. at 102. 99 Federal Tort Claims Act of 1946, 28 U.S.C. §§ 1346.2671-2680 (1994). 100 184 F.2d 616 (7th Cir. 1950). 101 [d. at 618. 102 [d. 20011 CONFLICTS BEIWEEN LIVESTOCK AND WILDLIFE 561 1. Failure to Warn ofa Known Danger Alaska common law pennits a person to challenge a property owner for negligently failing to warn of a known dangerous condition on his property. Under this theory, a person can assert that the state is liable for a dangerous condition, if the state knew it was dangerous, and the dangerous condition caused injury to someone lawfully upon state property. Only one case reported in Alaska discusses this issue in a wildlife management context, although the court ultimately focused on the discretionary functions doctrine for its ruling. In Carlson v. State,I03 Alaska was sued for negligent failure to warn of the potential dangers posed by bears at a state-maintained roadside trash receptacle. 104 The court reviewed several relevant cases from different jurisdictions as instructive. The court concluded that Wamser v. St. PetersburglO5 was most on point. 106 In Wamser, an injured swimmer argued that the city had a duty to warn of shark dangers in state waters. 107 Rejecting the plaintiffs claim, the Florida court held that the city had no duty to warn of sharks because it had no specific or reasonably foreseeable knowledge of potential shark attacks. 108 Indeed, the court went further, stating that the city had no duty to seek information about the likelihood of an attack. 109 In line with Wamser, the Alaska court also cited Mann v. StateYo In that case, a motorist, who struck a deer, complained that the state had a duty to post warnings, but because the state had no actual or constructive notice of a dangerous situation, the state had no obligation to warn. III However, the Alaska court also mentioned Morrison v. State,112 which held that when deer habitually cross a particular section of highway, a duty to warn may arise. 113 The Carlson court also found consistent legal reasoning in two federal cases involving bear attacks. 114 In Rubenstein v. United States,115 because NPS had no specific knowledge of potentially dangerous bears in the vicinity of a campground, the government 103 598 P.2d 969. 973 (Alaska 1979). 104 Id. 105 339 So. 2d 244 (Fla. Dist. Ct. App. 1976). 106 598 P.2d at 974. 107 339 So. 2d at 246. 108 Id. 109 Id. 110 47 N.Y.S.2d 553 (N.Y. Ct. Cl. 1944). III Id. at 553. 112 123 N.Y.S.2d 105 (N.Y. Ct. Cl. 1952). 113 Id. at 105. 114 Carlson v. State. 598 P.2d 969. 974 (Alaska 1979). 115 338 F. Supp. 654 (N.D. Cal. 1972). affd. 488 F.2d 1071 (9th Cir. 1973). 562 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 did not have a duty to WaIn visitors,ll6 However, in Claypool v. United States,117 because NPS did know of previous raids by a particular problem bear, the agency was held liable for a subsequent attack against a camper. 118 Without ruling on the state’s liability, the Carlson court concluded that the bear-mauling victim had grounds to assert that the state created a dangerous condition at the highway pullout trash-barrel, and that the state failed to WaIn of possible bear attack, resulting from that condition. 119 It is the state’s failure to WaIn, not the state’s theoretical control over the bear, that serves as a valid, legal cause of action. The court stated that “if a landowner knows that a wild animal is creating a dangerous situation on his property, he has a duty either to remove the danger or to WaIn people who may be threatened by the danger.” 120 2. Artificial Conditions A second possible tort action stems from the nature of the dangerous condition itself. Alaskan courts have not spoken directly to this issue. However, other state courts have determined that a state can only be subject to liability if the state directly contributed to the danger by creating an unnatural condition that exacerbated the danger. In Arroyo v. State,121 a California court was called upon to decide whether state wildlife management had created an artificially high population of mountain lion, which posed a danger to wildlands recreational users. 122 The plaintiff argued that the state’s moratorium on mountain lion hunting had increased the population of the animals to the point that their population was an artificial condition, thereby increasing the potential for dangerous contacts between the lions and the public.123 Relying on a statute, the California court concluded that the intent of wildlife management was to restore natural populations of animals native to California.124 Declaring that wild animals are a natural condition on unimproved public lands, the court decided that the state was not liable. 125 116 [d. at 656. 117 98 F. Supp. 702 (S.D. Cal. 1951). 118 [d. at 704. 119 598 P.2d at 973 (rejecting the state’s attempt to shield itself under discretionary functions docmne). 120 [d. at 974. Some jurisdictions have even held that the state has no dUty to warn of known dangers posed by wildlife. For example, the Iowa Supreme Court held that no duty existed to post a highway warning sign at an area of frequent deer crossings. Metler v. Cooper Transp. Co., 378 N.W.2d 907. 913-14 (Iowa 1985). 121 40 Cal. Rptr. 2d 627 (Cal. Ct. App. 1995). 122 [d. at 629. 123 [d. at 632. 124 [d. at 631-32. 125 [d. 200I] CONFUCTS BEIWEEN UVESTOCK AND WILDUFE 563 In Andrews v. Andrews,126 an isolated case with which most other jurisdictions disagree, a North Carolina court determined that an individual may be held liable for creating an artificial condition that induces wildlife to cause harm to another’s property.127 The construction of an artificial pond and the provision of feed on private property both attracted unusual concentrations of migratory waterfowl. The ducks and geese consumed copious quantities of a neighbor’s crops and in general, were injurious to the neighbor’s property.128 The court concluded that these conditions were not created by a natural state, but rather were artifices of human endeavor, thus constituting the tort of nuisance.129 However, individuals should not look to courts for comfort when they are damaged by wildlife under intensive state management. Over the past century, courts consistently have been hostile towards holding a state liable for damage to private property that results from the state stewardship of wildlife. 130 B. Takings Doctrine and the Management ofWildlife Another potential source for state liability may arise under takings doctrine. However, like tort liability, courts have tended to be inimical toward this legal theory as a basis for state liability. A taking occurs when a state appropriates private property for a public purpose without providing just compensation. 131 The issue in most takings cases focuses upon the character and degree of sovereign intrusion into private property right expectations. A taking cause of action may arise under either a state or federal constitution.132 The Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution applies to the federal government directly and to the states through the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment.133 Takings can occur as a result of direct appropriation of private property, damage to private property as a result of a government act, or because of significant government restrictions on the use of private property.134 126 88 S.E.2d 88 (N.C. 1955). 127 Id. at 93. 128 Id. at 92. 129 Id. at 92-93. 130 See. e.g., Green Acres Land & Cattle v. Missouri, 766 S.W.2d 649. 652 (Mo. 1988) (holding that a wildlife refuge was not an unreasonable use of land or a nuisance); Barrett v. State, 220 N.Y. 423, 427 (1917) (holding that the state was not liable for damage caused by beavers protected under state law). 131 KLK. Inc. v. United States Dep’t of Interior, 35 F.3d 454, 455 (9th Cir. 1994). 132 See, e.g., Christy v. Hodel, 857 F.2d 1324 (9th Cir. 1988) (addressing federal takings claim for wildlife-caused damage to private property); State v. Hammer, 550 P.2d 820 (Alaska 1976) (addressing takings claim arising under Alaska’s constitution). 133 U.S. CONST. amend. V; U.S. CONST. amend. XlV, § 1. 134 Christy, 857 F.2d at 1329-30; Mountain States Legal Found. v. Hodel, 799 564 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 Alaska’s constitution provides elevated protection for property owners from regulatory takings. 135 While the federal takings calculus does not allow for compensation for lost profits, Alaska law does. 136 Also, Alaska law requires an inquiry into the legitimacy and importance of the government’s goals advanced by the regulation. 137 This is a noticeably more difficult test for the state to meet than under federal takings doctrine. However, even under these circumstances, it is unlikely that a plaintiff can prevail, 1. Prohibitions on Killing Depredating Wildlife Absent an explicit statute to the contrary, individuals cannot destroy wildlife that is damaging their private property.138 In Alaska, such a statute exists, but it is doubtful if it allows herders to harass or kill caribou to prevent mingling with reindeer. 139 The leading federal takings case on this issue is Christy v. HodeL 140 Mr. Christy owned 1700 sheep on land leased from the Blackfeet Indian Tribe adjacent to Glacier National Park. His sheep became the subject of nightly grizzly bear raids, which in the span of several nights, killed eighty-four of Christy’s animals. At first, he cooperated with federal wildlife officers’ attempt to control the bears, but these efforts proved fruitless. Eventually, he shot and killed a bear that was in the act of destroying sheep. 141 Mr. Christy was prosecuted for violating the Endangered Species Act,142 which F.2d 1423, 1429-31 (lOth Cir. 1986). 135 ALASKA CaNST. art.!, § 18; see 8960 Square Feet, More or Less v. State, 806 P.2d 843, 845 (Alaska 1991) (holding loss of visiblilty is compensable where the reduced visibility results from changes made to land taken by the state): Delisio v. Alaska Super. Ct., 740 P.2d 437, 44G-4l(Alaska 1987) (holding professional services constitute property subject to Alaska’s takings provision). 136 Hammer, 550 P.2d at 826. 137 Homeward Bound, Inc. v. Anchorage Sch. Dist., 791 P.2d 610, 614 (Alaska 1990). 138 United States v. Darst, 726 F. Supp. 286, 288 (D. Kan. 1989); but see Cross v. State, 370 P.2d 371 (Wyo. 1962). In Cross, the Wyoming Supreme Court considered whether the legislature can, pursuant to police power, prohibit a man from protecting his property from the depredations of wild animals. 370 P.2d at 327. The court found that it could not, stating that a citizen has the constitutional right to protect his property from damage-causing wildlife by killing the offending animals, but only if the use of force is reasonably necessary and is a last resort after all other reasonable means have been exhausted. rd. at 378. 139 See ALASKA STAT. § 11.81.320 (Michie 2000), implemented by ALASKA ADMIN. CODE tit. 5, § 81.375 (2000) (regulation allows taking game in defense of life or property when the necessity is not caused by harassment or improper trash disposal and all other practicable means have been first exercised): Jordan v. State, 681 P.2d 346, 350 n.3 (Alaska Ct. App. 1984) (regulations address individual’s right to kill wildlife, but they do not support a takings claim). 140 857 F.2d 1324 (9th Cir. 1988). 141 rd. at 1326. 142 Endangered Species Act of 1973, 16 U.S.C. §§ 1531-1544 (994). 200I] CONFUCTS BEIWEEN UVESTOCK AND WIWUFE 565 protects the grizzly bear as a threatened species.143 Christy argued that the prohibition against protecting his private property from damage was an unconstitutional taking without compensation.144 The court ruled against Mr. Christy, stating that “the right to kill federally protected wildlife in defense of property is not ‘implicit in the concept of ordered liberty’ nor so ‘deeply rooted in this Nation’s history and tradition’ that it can be recognized by [this court] as a fundamental right guaranteed by the Fifth Amendment.”145 Therefore, the prohibition against the destruction of grizzly bears was not subject to strict scrutiny; it was instead reviewed under the standard of rational basis, which the court determined the statute sUrvived. 146 A subsequent lower court decision followed the Christy rational, holding that a “[d]efendent has no unconditional or absolute right to kill federally protected birds in defense of his property.”147 This lower court opinion addressed the issue of trapping great horned owls that were attacking a farmer’s chickens.148 Alaskan courts have not directly addressed the issue of whether the state’s own constitutional protection of private property may permit the killing or harassment of depredating wildlife. Dicta indicates, however, that the Alaskan courts would rule in a fashion consistent with the Christy rationale. 149 2. Destruction ofPrivate Property by Wildlife as Government Taking As in the tort cases, courts have stated that wildlife are only regulated by the state; one cannot claim that wild animals are instruments of state action. Case law rejecting takings claims for damage caused by wildlife has been consistent over the past three decades. Thus, takings claims for the consumption of private hay by 143 Christy. 857 F.2d at 1326-27. 144 [d. at 1327. 145 [d. at 1330. 146 [d. at 1330, 1322-34. 147 United States v. Darst. 726 F. Supp. 286. 288 (D. Kan. 1989). 148 [d. at 287. 149 Jordan v. State, 681 P.2d 346, 350 n.3 (Alaska Ct. App. 1984) (citations omitted). The case concerned the killing of a black bear to prevent the bear from consuming a legally harvested moose carcass and the court stated: To the extent that the regulations infringe upon their right to kill the bear in defense of property, the Jordans argue, they were deprived of their property without due process of law and without compensation. We disagree. The state regulation did not result in either a “taking” or an injury to the Jordans’ property. They simply regulated the Jordans’ right to shoot a bear. The Jordans did not suffer a loss of property without due process of law because their loss was incidental to the state regulation that was enacted to protect game. [d. 566 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 wild horses150 and for the forage consumed by artificially introduced elk were both rejected. 151 While there are no reported Alaska cases, federal and other state jurisdictions are clear. Mountain States Legal FoW1dation v. Hodel is the controlling federal case. There, private rangeland owners in Wyoming complained that federally protected wild horses were consuming significant quantities of forage grown on private lands. 152 The ranchers asserted that the protection of wild horses prevented them from protecting their property, and that the loss of valuable forage constituted a taking in violation of the Fifth Amendment. 153 The federal court pointed out that while wild horses are progeny of domesticated animals, they are wildlife under federal law, and therefore, must be considered no less the wild animal than are the bears that roam the national parks. 154 The court then opined that it is well settled that wild animals are under the control of no one.155 Therefore, the ranchers were incorrect to allege that the “wild horses are, in effect, instrumentalities of the federal government whose presence constitutes a permanent governmental occupation of the Association’s property. “156 Looking to previous state and federal decisions on the matter, the court found that the majority view rejected takings claims for damage caused by protected wildlife. 157 In addressing the effect of the legislation protecting the horses, the court admitted that the grazing habits of wild horses diminished the value of the plaintiffs’ properties. However, the court pointed out that a mere reduction in the value of property as a result of government regulation pursuant to statute does not necessarily constitute a taking. 158 Recently, in Moennan v. State,159 a California court reached a similar conclusion. A landowner alleged that he was entitled to compensation for damage to his property caused by elk that the state wildlife agency relocated near his ranch. l60 Under a wildlife restoration program, the state moved tule elk from their natural grazing area to a region where the elk had been extirpated nearly a century before. 161 The elk destroyed the landowner’s fences and consumed forage intended for his livestock. In an opinion consistent with Christy, the court reasoned the 150 Mountain States Legal Found. v. Hodel, 799 F.2d 1423. 1431 (lOth Cir. 1986). 151 Moerman v. State. 21 Cal. Rptr. 2d 329. 334 (Cal. Ct. App. 1993). 152 Mountain States Legal Found.. 779 F.2d at 1424. 153 Id. 154 Id. at 1426. 155 Id. 156 Id. at 1428. 157 Id. at 1429. 158 Id. at 1431. 159 21 Cal. Rptr. 2d 329 (Cal. Ct. App. 1993). 160 Id. at 331. 161 Id. 200I] CONFUcrs BEIWEEN UVESTOCK AND WILDUFE 567 elk were wild animals that naturally roam across private and public property, and the state cannot own or control wild animals that have not been reduced to possession.162 The court considered it immaterial that the state wildlife agencies captured, tagged, released, and monitored the elk. 163 The animals remained ferae naturae, and therefore, the government did not owe compensation for the damage to private property caused by the elk. 164 C. State Immunity Under Discretionary Functions Doctrine Under common law, a state enjoys sovereign immunity from suit by an individual. 165 States may choose, however, to voluntarily submit to liability through general statutory waivers. 166 Both states and the federal government have maintained an exception to this waiver of immunity through the discretionary functions doctrine. 167 Thus, even if a state or federal government is negligent in some way in the management of wildlife, the doctrine may bar a plaintiff from seeking redress. The discretionary functions doctrine maintains sovereign immunity for injuries caused by government agencies and employees acting within the scope of their employment in the exercise, or failure to exercise, a discretionary act. 168 The purpose of this waiver exception is to protect certain governmental activities from exposure to suit by private individuals. In Tippet v. United States, a federal wildlife management case, the Tenth Circuit stated the two-prong test for applying the doctrine. First, the court must decide whether the action complained of involved a matter of choice for the government employee. 169 Second, the court must decide whether the exception is intended to apply to that type of choice. 170 The type of choices that are shielded by the exception are those that involve balancing competing policy considerations. 171 If a statute, regulation, or policy specifically prescribes a particular course of action under certain circumstances, the exception cannot be applied. 172 At issue in Tippett was a decision by a ranger in Yellowstone 162 [d. at 332-33 (citations omitted). 163 [d. at 333. 164 [d. 165 Seminole Tribe of Fla. v. Florida. 517 U.S. 44. 72-73 (1996). 166 See. e.g.. ALASKA STAT. § 09.50.250 (Michie 2000) (Alaska Tort Claims Act generally waives sovereign immunity for tort claims against the state). 167 Tippett v. United States. 108 F.3d 1194. 1196 (lOth Cir. 1997); Brady v. State 965 P.2d 1, 16 (Alaska 1998). 168 TIppett, 108 F.3d at 1196. 169 [d. 170 [d. 171 [d. at 1198. 172 [d. at 1197. 568 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 National Park not to remove a moose that had been threatening snowmobilers dUring the course of a winter day.173 When a particularly unfortunate snowmobile rider tried to go around this recalcitrant ungulate. the moose charged and kicked Mr. Tippett. breaking his neck. Mr. Tippett sued. claiming that NPS was negligent. 174 The court rejected the claim. applying the discretionary functions exception to the waiver of sovereign immunity.175 Finding that no specific regulations addressed confrontations between wildlife and snowmobiles in Yellowstone. the court stated that park rangers are entrusted with the discretion to balance between the conservation of wild animals and visitor safety. 176 Consequently, Mr. Tippett could not sue the federal government.177 Alaska has statutorily consented to being sued for certain tortS. 178 Like most states, Alaska has also stipulated that it cannot be sued for actions arising from discretionary functions. 179 In Alaska, the exception is narrower than in federal law because application of the discretionary functions exception is based upon the “planning-operations” test. 180 Carlson v. State evaluated whether a particular decision not to collect trash at a roadside turnout in winter was a discretionary function. 181 As previously discussed. a bear grievously mauled Carlson at the rubbish-strewn turnout. The legal question was if the decision to allow the garbage to pile up was discretionary. Under the planning-operational test, the question became whether the decision complained of rises to the level of policy making or planning; such acts cannot result in tort liability.182 Because the state did not have a policy concerning winter garbage collection. the decision to ignore the roadside pullout’s cleanliness was operational in nature and not subject to the exception.183 Thus. Carlson could claim that the state negligently failed to warn of a known danger of bears at its roadside. 184 173 Id. at 1196. 174 Id. at 1195. 175 Id. at 1198-99. 176 Id. 177 Id. 178 ALASKA STAT. § 09.50.250 (Michie 2000). 179 Id. (“lAIn action may not be brought under this section if the claim [is] based upon the exercise or performance or the failure to exercise or perform a discretionary function.”). 180 Brady v. State. 965 P.2d 1. 16 (Alaska 1998). 181 Carlson v. State. 598 P.2d 969. 973 (Alaska 1979). 182 Id. at 972. 183 Id. at 973. 184 Id. at 975. 200II CONFLICTS BE7WEEN LIVESTOCK AND WILDLIFE 569 D. State Wildlife Responsibilities Under the Public Trust Doctrine In addition to being limited by takings doctrine and tort theory, a state’s police power to manage wildlife is also circumscribed by the common law doctrine of public trust. The public trust doctrine has had profound limiting effects on Alaska’s management of wildlife. Fish, wildlife, and the beds of navigable waters are public trust resources in Alaska,185 and the public trust doctrine imposes both an affirmative duty and a proscription upon exercises of state police powers over trust resources.186 Under its affirmative duty, the state must guarantee equality of opportunity to gain access to public trust resources for public trust uses. 187 Likewise, the public trust doctrine prohibits state abrogation of its duties as trustee. 188 An implied corollary to the public trust doctrine is the notion that the state possesses a mandatory duty to protect wildlife and ensure the perpetuation of all wildlife species.189 One such duty may be to prevent both genetic pollution in wildlife from domestic animals and transmission of infectious disease or parasites. 190 Management proscriptions pursuant to trust doctrine obligations that limit use of private property are immune from takings challenges because of an implied trust easement that predates private title.191 Courts in Alaska use the strictest level of scrutiny to review public trust doctrine challenges to state management of wildlife,192 making the doctrine one of the most significant limitations upon state wildlife management discretion in Alaska. E. Federal Trust Responsibilities to Native Americans Federal authority is quite different from state power. The federal government possesses no inherent police power because, under the U.S. Constitution, it is a government with limited, delegated 185 See Brooks v. Wright. 971 P.2d 1025. 1033 (Alaska 1999) (holding that legislature lacks exclusive law-making authority over wildlife management); Pullen v. Ulmer. 923 P.2d 54, 61 (Alaska 1996) (holding that salmon may not be appropriated by initiative because they are assets of the state); McDowell v. State. 785 P.2d 1, 8 (Alaska 1989) [declaring statute unconstitutional because it granted natural residents preference over fish and game for subsistence purposes); Owsichek v. State, 763 P.2d 488. 496 [Alaska 1988) [holding statute granting hunting gUides exclusive use of areas unconstitutional); CWC Fisheries. Inc. v. Bunker. 755 P.2d 1115, 1118-20 [Alaska 1988) [applying the public trust doctrine to tidelands). 186 Owsichek, 763 P.2d at 494-96; CWC Fisheries, 755 P.2d at 1117-19; Pullen. 923 P.2d at 60-61. 187 Owsichek, 763 P.2d at 494-96; CWC Fisheries, 755 P.2d at 1117-19. 188 Pullen, 923 P.2d at 60-61. 189 In re Steuart Transp. Co.. 495 F. Supp. 38, 40 [E.D. Va. 1980); Puerto Rico v. S.S. Zoe Colocotroni, 628 F.2d 652, 671 [1st Cir. 1980). 190 Pac. Northwest Venison Producers v. Smitch, 20 F.3d 1008, 1013 [9th Cir. 1994); Mainev.Taylor. 477 U.S. 131. 148-51 (1986). 191 Orion Corp. v. State, 747 P.2d 1062. 1080-82 (Wash. 1987). 192 Owsichek, 763 P.2d at 492. 570 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 authority. This does not, however, appreciably limit federal ability to manage wildlife when it does so pursuant to one of its delegated powers. These powers are derived from expansive interpretations of the U.S. Constitution’s Commerce Clause,193 Property Clause,194 and Treaty Clause.195 When the federal government exercises policelike power pursuant to any of these clauses, the federal action Americans.197 preempts conflicting state law under the U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause.196 A special relationship exists between the United States Congress and Native This relationship includes a mixture of legal duties, moral obligations, and assumptions that apply to the interpretation of statutes and treaties. Under certain circumstances, the relationship approximates a trusteeship, with the United States serving as the trustee and Native Americans the beneficiaries. 198 The exact demarcation of the duties and obligations held by the federal government, however, is not exact and may be context-specific. Federal agencies that have been delegated authority to work with tribal governments must act on behalf of the best interests of Native Americans when implementing statutes that touch upon the federal and Indian relationship.199 Even federal agencies that have no direct relationship to Indian tribes are encumbered by a duty to execute a trust mandate for the benefit of Native Americans. However, the extent of this obligation-as it relates to agencies not specifically established to address Indian policy-is not well developed under the law. Thus, considerable uncertainty exists as 193 U.S. CONST. art. I. § 8, cl. 3; see also United States v. Helsley. 615 F.2d 784. 786 (9th Cir. 1979) (holding that Congress had authority under the Commerce Clause to regulate airborne hunting). 194 U.S. CONST. art. N. § 3. d. 2; see also Kleppe v. New Mexico, 426 U.S. 529. 540-44 (1976) (holding that Congress has authority under the Commerce Clause to regulate the public lands and the wildlife thereon). 195 U.S. CONST. art. I, § 10, d. 1; see also Missouri v. Holland. 252 U.S. 416, 432 (1920) (holding Congress had authority under the Treaty Clause to regulate migratory birds). 196 U.S. CONST. art VI. d. 2; see also Hunt v. United States, 278 U.S. 96. 100 (1928) (holding that United State’s decision to kill deer in Grand Canyon preempted state hunting laws). 197 See. e.g., United States v. Mitchell, 463 U.S. 206 (1983) (holding that comprehensive statutes and regulations giving federal government responsibility to manage Indian resources and property established a fiduciary relationship); Morton v. Mancari, 417 U.S. 535 (1974) (holding that Native American hiring preference in BIA did not violate the Equal Protections Clause); Lone Wolf v. Hitchcock, 187 U.S. 553 (1903) (holding the United States has a duty of protection to the Indian Tribes arising from the power that the federal government possesses over Tribal property); Cherokee Nation v. Georgia, 30 U.S. 1 (1831) (stating that the relationship between the federal government and Indian Tribes is unique. and that Tribes look to the government for protection). 198 Mitchell. 463 U.S. at 224. 199 Inter-Tribal Council ofAriz. v. Babbitt. 51 F.3d 199,203 (9th Cir. 1995). 200 I] CONFUCTS BEIWEEN UVESTOCK AND WILDUFE 571 to the exact nature of the trust duty owed to Native Americans by agencies such as NPS. Some legal scholars and litigators expound the theory that agency responsibility for the trust toward Indian tribes must take priority over policies that arise from the exercise of administrative discretion if a conflict exists between policy and Indian welfare.200 They argue that only an express congressional directive to the contrary overrides this fiduciary dUty.201 This position, though, seems contrary to a recent United States Supreme Court decision in which the Court indicated that agencies have the liberty to balance trust considerations with their normal responsibilities, so long as the decisions are made in good faith and without animus towards tribes.202 One could argue that NPS, in its supervision of Bering Land Bridge, is involved in the direct management of reindeer, which are the property of Native herders. Consequently, the agency has a primary, not incidental, relationship with tribal government and Natives, making it answerable to the more robust trust analysis.203 Because Congress has expressly directed NPS, through ANILCA, to manage the preserve in a manner consistent with providing a continued reindeer herding opportunity,204 an express trust duty automatically attaches to agency decisions that may adversely affect the reindeer because federal agencies incur specific, not general, fiduciary responsibilities when the agency manages Indian resources.205 At a minimum, one can argue that federal agencies have a duty not to cavalierly destroy Indian natural resources and property. Indeed, federal agencies ought to protect Indian property when at all possible.206 However, the Supreme Court has recognized that federal agencies with primary duties not directly related to Indian welfare need not adhere to the strict standards of a trustee when carrying out their statutory obligations.207 200 Reid P. Chambers. Judicial Eriforcement oj the Federal 1h1st Responsibility to Indians, 27 STAN. L. REv. 1213. 1232-34 (1975) (“[W]hen actions or projects of federal agencies conflict with the trust responsibility to Indians. the non-Indian federal activity should be operated so as to avoid interference with Indian trust property.”); Dillingham. supra note 10. at 680 (argUing that the Reindeer IndustJy Act’s primary purpose is to protect Native American subsistence). 201 Chambers, supra note 200, at 1248. 202 Lincoln v. Vigil, 508 U.S. 182. 194-95 (1993) (holding that the trust relationship does not limit agency discretion to reorder its priorities from serving a subgroup to serving a broader class of Native Americans). 203 Dillingham, supra note 10, at 678-80. 204 16 U.S.C. § 410hh(2) (1994). 205 Inter-Tribal Council of Ariz. v. Babbitt, 51 F.3d 199, 203 (9th Cir. 1995). 206 Pyramid Lake Paiute Indians v. Morton, 354 F. Supp. 252, 256 (D.D.C. 1972). 207 Nevada v. United States, 463 U.S. 110, 127-28 (1983). 572 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 F. National Park Seroice Duty to Protect Caribou Congress has spoken about the management of the National Park System. In the National Park Service Organic Act (Organic Act or Act),208-creating NPS-Congress stated that the agency was [To] promote and regulate the use of the Federal areas known as national parks, monuments, and reservations … by such means and measures as conform to the fundamental purpose of said parks, monuments and reservations, which purpose is to conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by . such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.209 In subsequent amendments to the Organic Act, Congress explained that the promotion and regulation of the National Park System shall be consistent with the protection of park resources, and shall not be exercised in derogation of these values except as specifically provided for by Congress.210 In this regard, subsequent park unit legislation is seen as augmenting the Organic Act, not repealing its preservation mandates.21 I The Organic Act and its amendments reqUire management of 212 park areas so as not to compromise the park’s natural resources. However, the Act is silent as to how NPS is to achieve protection of 213 park resources.Congress hqs placed specific emphasis on the preservation and conservation of natural resources within park units.214 Indeed, the desire to observe wildlife for purely aesthetic purposes in national parks is a cognizable user interest within the definition of park use and enjoyment.215 Congress has repeatedly made clear that it does not consider consumptive uses of park resources to be compatible within park units unless otherwise specifically provided for by statute.216 Under the Organic Act, NPS has been given the difficult task of balancing uses and protection of park resources.217 To achieve this difficult enterprise, NPS has broad discretion to determine what 208 16 U.S.C. §§ 1-18f-3 (l994 & Supp. II 1996). 209 [d. § 1. 210 [d. § la-I. 211 Mausolfv. Babbitt (MausoifIVl, 125 F.3d 661. 668 (8th Cir. 1997). 212 Alaska WildeITless Alliance v. Jensen, 108 F.3d 1065, 1072 (9th Cir. 1997). 213 Nat’l Wildlife Fed’n v. Nat’l Park Setv., 669 F. Supp. 384, 391 (D. Wyo. 1987). 214 Mich. United Consetvation Clubs v. LUjan (MUCCl, 949 F.2d 202, 206 (6th Cir. 1991): Bicycle Trails Council of Marin v. Babbitt (BTCMJ, 82 F.3d 1445, 1452 (9th Cir. 1996). 215 Wyo. Fann Bureau Fed’n v. Babbitt, 987 F. Supp. 1349, 1360 (D. Wyo. 1997), rev’d on othergrounds, 199 F.3d 1224 (lOth Cir. 2000). 216 MUCC, 949 F.2d at 207. 217 Nat’l Wildlife Fed’n, 669 F. Supp. at 390. 2001] CONFUCTS BE1WEEN UVESTOCK AND WILDUFE 573 uses of park resources are proper, and what proportion of the park’s 218 resources are available for each use.In carrying out its preservation mission, NPS need not wait for damage to actually occur before taking action to protect wildlife and other natural attributes.219 Exotic species such as wild horses, however popular, may be removed when their continued existence in the park poses a potential threat to preserving the park’s ecological integrity.220 As to the question of whether NPS may permit activities within national parks that permanently impair unique park resources, the answer is “no.”221 NPS’s mandate permits only those uses that are consistent with preservation and inconsistent with significant, permanent impairment.222 Under ANILCA, the preservation mandate is refined to mean that management of wildlife is to maintain natural and healthy populations.223 While NPS has not yet promulgated regulations to implement the “natural and healthy” statutory language, it is likely that Alaskan national parks, monuments, and preserves have less discretion in balancing uses with preservation than their counterparts in other parts of the nation. G. Federal Agency Obligation to Providefor Subsistence Opportunity Related to a potential federal obligation to manage caribou for natural and healthy populations is a legal argument that could be detrimental of the reindeer industry on the Seward Peninsula. This legal action stems from the subsistence provisions contained in ANILCA. Under ANILCA, all federal agencies must provide for the continuation of subsistence opportunity on federal land for local rural residents.224 Any decision that may interfere with subsistence activity is reviewed pursuant to procedures stipulated within the text of the statute.225 If either BLM or NPS assists reindeer herders in limiting caribou incursions onto the Seward Peninsula, a local rural resident may argue that the management activity interferes with the resident’s opportunity for subsistence harvest of the 218 BTCM, 82 F.3d at 1454; Nat’l Wildlife Fed’n, 669 F. Supp. at 391. 219 Wilkins v. Sec”y of Interior, 995 F.2d 850, 853 (8th Cir. 1993); New Mexico State Game Comm’n v. Udall, 410 F.2d 1197, 1201 (lOth Cir. 1969). 220 Wilkins, 995 F.2d at 852-53. 221 S. Utah Wilderness Alliance v. Dabney, 222 F.3d 819, 829 (lOth Cir. 2000) (“We agree that permitting ‘significant permanent impairment’ would violate the Act’s mandate that the NPS proVide for the enjoyment of the parks ‘in such a manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations.'”). 222 16 U.S.C. § la-l (l994); S. Utah Wildemess Alliance, 222 F.3d at 829. 223 16 U.S.C. § 3125 (1994 & Supp. III 1997). 224 rd. §§ 3111-3126. 225 rd. § 3120(a) (l994). 574 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 caribou~ It may well be that federal agencies would be prohibited. under the subsistence provisions of ANILCA. from rendering the type of active assistance that causes marked departures from current migration patterns exhibited by the Western Arctic Caribou Herd. At the very least. a potentially aggrieved party could demand strict adherence to the subsistence impact assessment process provided by ANILCA. Analysis of federal land management programs must consider possible effects on subsistence opportunity.226 This analysis is a two-step process. First. the land manager must determine if the contemplated agency action may significantly restrict subsistence opportunity.227 If the answer is yes. then the agency must complete a thorough review assessing alternative actions and effective mitigation.228 The trigger for the second level of analysis is not a “likely” significant impact. but rather. a “credible threat” of a significant impact.229 Significant interference with subsistence use may result from 1) a reduction in aVailability of harvestable resources due to a population decline. 2) a reduction in aVailability of harvestable resources caused by an alteration in behavior. location. or habitat. 230 and 3) limitation on access to harvestable resources.In determining if a particular management activity may significantly impact subsistence activity. ANILCA requires evaluation of cumulative impacts from related management activities upon the subsistence opportunity.231 Agency cooperation in aggressive management techniques that deter caribou from entering the Seward Peninsula creates the possibility of a cause of action by subsistence hunters. under the second criterion listed above. At a minimum. this would automatically trigger the administrative process necessitating the impact assessment. Once the assessment process has begun. the federal activity in question may only proceed if the Department of Interior finds that the effects on subsistence opportunity are necessary and consistent with sound public lands management. and all reasonable steps to minimize the adverse effects on subsistence use have been taken.232 Such a standard may be difficult to satisfy. 226 Kunaknana v. Clark. 742 F.2d 1145. 1151 (9th Cir. 1984). 227 [d. at 1151. 228 [d. 229 Hanlon v. Barton. 740 F. Supp. 1446. 1449 (D. Alaska 1988). 230 Kunaknana. 742 F.2d at 1152. 231 Sierra Club v. Penfold. 857 F.2d 1307. 1321 (9th Cir. 1988). 232 16 U.S.C. § 3120(a)(3) (1994). 200I] CONFUCTS BE1WEEN UVESTOCK AND WIWUFE 575 V. CONCLUSION Reindeer herders in Alaska have suffered tremendous losses because of new migration patterns by the Western Arctic Caribou Herd. As the caribou colonize the Seward Peninsula, reindeer herds have been decimated and herders have gone out of business. Yet, this analysis of available case law indicates that there is little likelihood that the herders would be successful pursuing either tort or constitutional takings claims for compensation. Indeed, there is some indication in the reviewed materials to support the notion that wildlife advocacy groups could sue state or federal agencies to demand more restrictive regulation of the reindeer industry to prevent potential deleterious impacts to caribou by reindeer herders. The situation cries out for a balanced legislative solution that fairly addresses the needs and obligations of all concerned. Neither the State of Alaska nor the federal government own or control caribou. Caribou are wild animals subject to the doctrine of ferae naturae. Consequently, the state has no liability for the actions taken by caribou, even though by exercising of its police powers the state can manage and prescribe the means and conditions under which an individual may reduce a caribou to personal possession. Like the beaver in Barrett or the geese in Sickman, the state has no duty to control the migration and other behaviors of caribou. Instead, herders may argue that it is not the caribou that caused the loss of reindeer. Rather, the harm resulted from the federal government’s or state’s failure to warn herders that migrating caribou, while on public lands east of the Seward Peninsula, were poised to enter reindeer ranges. Had herders received warning of the imminent caribou incursion, the reindeer owners could have taken steps to herd reindeer away from lichen corridors and thereby protect them from being overwhelmed by caribou. Both state and federal governments are in a reasonable position to know caribou location because the Western Arctic Caribou Herd is closely monitored with both radio and satellite collars by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game and FWS.233 This monitoring is a regular part of those agencies’ normal research and management activity. Arguably, the agencies have a duty to warn because the agencies now know that Caribou, when migrating through reindeer ranges, tend to incorporate reindeer, causing permanent loss to the herders. Just as the plaintiff in Carlson was entitled to sue Alaska for failing to warn of the dangerous condition posed by possible bears at a dumpsite, a herder could sue for the government’s failure to warn of the caribou encroachment. There are three major flaws to this approach in tort. First, it is 233 WAC MANAGEMENT PLAN, supra note 44, at B-I0. 576 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 unlikely that caribou constitute an inherently dangerous condition on public property for tort purposes. A bear habituated to garbage is an obvious danger. A caribou, gently grazing on lichen, sedges, and willow boughs is a relatively benign presence on public land. Indeed, only the exceptional circumstances of reindeer herders make them susceptible to loss when caribou pass through the peninsula. If the danger is not severe, obvious, and imminent, there probably is no duty to warn. The second problem is that public agencies could easily terminate grazing permits to reindeer holders in order to limit agency exposure to liability. Loss of grazing privileges on public land would cause a more deleteriOUs blow to the reindeer industry than the loss of reindeer to migrating caribou. Even the threat of suit may be enough to cause agencies to be more hostile to reindeer herding. Finally, the decision not to warn herders may be the product of balancing competing policy choices and therefore, immune from suit under the discretionary functions doctrine. It would be even more difficult to argue that Alaska has created an artificial condition on its land by creating an overly abundant caribou population that now spills into reindeer ranges on the Seward Peninsula. The management plan for the Western Arctic Caribou Herd primarily involves monitoring, allowing natural conditions such as predators, protecting habitat, and determining whether to regulate the ungulate population.234 State and federal agencies have done nothing in western Alaska akin to the activities in Andrews. No effort has been expended to increase the carrying capacity of the habitat of the Western Arctic caribou, and no particular predator control program has been implemented to specifically bolster caribou populations on the Seward Peninsula. Caribou are by nature migratory and their herd populations throughout the state experience wide variations in numbers over time. An argument championing the claim of a constitutional taking of herders’ property would likewise fail. Loss of reindeer to caribou is not unlike the loss of forage to elk in Moerman, or the loss of sheep to grizzly bears in Christy. Because caribou are not under the active control of the state, they cannot be considered instrumentalities of state action. Equally as important is the recognition that herders probably do not posses a right of self-help to harass caribou to drive them off the peninsula and away from the reindeer. Given the dicta of Jordan and the rulings in Christy and Darst, any attempt to herd caribou by snow machine or aircraft would probably violate state law. As was discussed in Christy, the government’s prohibition on activity protecting one’s property does not rise to the level of a takings 234 Id. at 1-4. .~ ~; .~ :~ 20011 CONFLICTS BETWEEN LIVESTOCK AND WILDLIFE 577 claim.235 A potentially promising claim for reindeer herders may rest in the trust duty that the federal government owes to Native Americans. It may be possible for herders to argue that federal agencies such as BLM, NPS, and FWS have, at a minimum, a duty to warn reindeer herders of caribou incursions. so as to afford herders the opportunity to sequester and protect reindeer from mingling with caribou. Herders can point to language in the Reindeer Act and the establishment of Bering Land Bridge National Preserve in ANILCA, which indicate that Native Americans are to be provided with special treatment to promote and protect Indian reindeer herding. Indeed, the broad purpose of the Reindeer Act expresses a clear congressional intent that there should be a reindeer industry in Alaska that benefits Natives financially.236 Federal land management agencies must at least ensure that their decisions in the administration of their conservation duties do not substantially damage the interests of Alaskan Native reindeer herders.237 Warning herders and assisting them in predicting caribou incursion paths onto the Seward Peninsula does not unreasonably interfere with the normal management obligations of federal agencies. Given the special relationship of federal executive agencies to Indians, the intent of the Reindeer Act, and the special provision in ANILCA, it is reasonable to assume that federal agencies should cooperate in the protection and maintenance of an Alaskan Native reindeer industry on the Seward Peninsula. The Department of the Interior may have a persuasive argument against imposing a federal duty to warn and assist to reindeer herders with the problems of reindeer and caribou mingling. Some legal scholars have argued that the Williams decision interprets the Reindeer Act as outside the special trust relationship owed by the federal government to Native Americans.238 However, it is probable that such an argument would run afoul of the canon of construction that states that ambiguous statutes regarding Native Americans must be interpreted on behalf of that Native Americans’ best interests.239 The herders may find that they are the targets of litigation. One could argue that current herding methods result in violations of either the state public trust doctrine or ANILCA. Under the public trust doctrine, a state has an affirmative duty to engage in wildlife stewardship on behalf of the state’s residents. In addition to providing equal opportunity to gain access to wildlife for public trust 235 Christy v. Hodel. 857 F.2d 1324. 1334-35 (9th Cir. 1988). 236 See Williams v. Babbitt. 115 F.3d 657. 665 (9th Cir. 1997) (holding that the Reindeer Act erected barriers to non-Native participation in reindeer herding). 237 [d. at 665-66. 238 Dillingham. supra note 10. at 666. 239 Williams. 115 F.3d at 660. 578 ENVIRONMENTAL LAW [Vol. 31:3 uses, a state must ensure the health and quality of its wildlife populations. If the co-mingling of reindeer and caribou on the Seward Peninsula results in “genetic pollution,” the herders may be forced to amend their herding practices and avoid oncoming caribou at their own expense. The same is true if co-mingling changes the behavior or migratory patterns of caribou. Under the public trust doctrine, the state may be sued by a third party and forced to restrict reindeer grazing activity. If reindeer herding practices interfere with state public trust doctrine obligations, NPS may also be under a duty, pursuant to ANILCA. which mandates the management of national parks, monuments, and preserves for natural and healthy populations of wildlife. If genetic mixing through hybridization between caribou and reindeer is documented as being significant, or if new research confirms that reindeer exacerbate brucellosis among Caribou. NPS may have no choice but to restrict the reindeer industry.240 The same result may transpire under the affrrmative subsistence mandates in ANILCA. Given the local importance of the Seward Peninsula reindeer industry, the need to respect and foster Native American entrepreneurship. the important public trust interests of the State of Alaska, and the preservation mandate of NPS, a legislative solution may be reqUired to prevent years of litigation. Indeed, litigation is probably quite unproductive because it would stymie investment in reindeer herding, complicate wildlife management planning with uncertainty, and sow distrust among local residents and government agencies. The best solution may be joint federal and state legislation. One possible form such legislation can take is to create a state and federal fund managed by BIA, the proceeds from which would be used to monitor caribou populations, assist herders in the costs of moving reindeer out of harm’s way, and compensate them for the losses when reindeer and caribou do make contact. Such a fund could also be used to continue studies of reindeer and caribou interaction to accurately determine the extent of hybridization, the effect on tundra from grazing pressure, and improved reindeer handling practices. It would be unfortunate if the current crisis precipitated hostile litigation that unraveled years of co-management. Proactive legislation may serve to foster and continue this tradition. It is important to put together a stable plan before third parties initiate 240 See Am. Horse Prot. Ass’n v. Lyng, 812 F.2d 1. 7 (D.C. Cir. 1987) (remanding case for further consideration by Secretary of Interior because the Secretary’s refusal to amend horse “soring” regulations was not reasonable under the applicable act, which sought to end the practice). An agency may be sued to carry out its affirmative mandatory obligations. if the agency inaction is characterized as an enforcement discretion decision; however, there is no standing to sue. Heckler v. Chaney. 470 U.S. 821. 854-55 (1983). 2001] CONFUCTS BE1WEEN UVESTOCK AND WILDUFE 579 litigation that could threaten the collaborative atmosphere, which has characterized the management of natural resources in western Alaska. http://nationalaglawcenter.org/assets/bibarticles/baderfinstad