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Idaho wolf population remains stable, despite more hunting, trapping

Idaho wolf population remains stable, despite more hunting, trapping

Idaho’s wolf population remained stable between 2019 and 2020 despite 53% more human-caused mortality, according to an Idaho Fish and Game population estimate.According to the 2020 estimate, there were 1,556 wolves, 10 fewer than the 2019 estimate of 1,566. The estimates were made in August, when the wolf population is usually at its peak.Human-caused mortality of wolves between the two August estimates was documented at 583, 53% higher than the 382 during the previous year. Combined with natural mortality, IDFG estimates the minimum population to be 900.To come to the estimate, IDFG...

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Former Idaho guard Mike Iupati quietly walks away from the NFL while still making a big impact for the Vandals

Former Idaho guard Mike Iupati quietly walks away from the NFL while still making a big impact for the Vandals

Mike Iupati quietly walked away from professional football.After an 11-year career that included four Pro Bowl selections and concluded with two years playing for the Seattle Seahawks, the former University of Idaho All-America offensive lineman simply told his agent he was retiring once the season ended.“My body was telling me it was time to close the door,” he says. Iupati had a highly successful run in the National Football League. However, he dealt with serious injuries throughout his career, and a chronic neck condition convinced him he needed to give up the game.“My goal was to hit 10...

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State video highlights underappreciated, embattled Washington shrub-steppe

State video highlights underappreciated, embattled Washington shrub-steppe

For more information and for ways to volunteer or contribute visit  or .Driving by at 60 mph, it looks like little more than a dry blur.Washington’s eastern desert.But if you stop and look, there is a smorgasbord of life between the Cascades and Spokane: wildflowers, golden eagles, mule deer, burrowing owls, too many grasses to count and, of course, shrubs.All told, more than 200 species of birds, 30 species of mammals and numerous species of reptiles, amphibians and insects live in and depend on Washington’s shrub-steppe habitat.“When you put yourself down at the level of that landscape,...

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Feb 14
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How rescuers saved a Bonners Ferry man and his 16-year-old daughter after a ski accident in Montana's backcountry

How rescuers saved a Bonners Ferry man and his 16-year-old daughter after a ski accident in Montana's backcountry

Goggles covered in ice and visibility nearing zero, Edward Moellmer squinted down an expanse of snow near the summit of Montana’s Engle Peak.What was that? That blurry disruption in an otherwise white expanse of snow and fog. Trees maybe?He sure hoped so, longing for the visual surety trees provide during whiteout days. It helps orient a disoriented skier and keeps vertigo at bay.His 16-year-old daughter, Kelly Moellmer, wasn’t so sure. “I think that’s a cornice,” she yelled over the whipsaw wind.The duo had left their home in Bonners Ferry at 5 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 6. Now nearing 3 p.m.,...

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Feb 14
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Revitalized Priest Lake cross country ski trails offer views, adventure

Revitalized Priest Lake cross country ski trails offer views, adventure

Distance: Nearly 7 miles of trail although the three loops mean you can make it as long or as short as you'd like.Directions: From Priest River, Idaho, take State Highway 57 north 22.5 miles. Look for trailhead parking on right just past milepost 22.Difficulty: Moderate to advanced, depending on trail.Season: Mid-December through mid-MarchWhat you’ll need: Skis. Daypack with food, water, extra clothes, headlamp and other essentials.Logistics: All groomed Nordic ski areas around Priest Lake require the Idaho Parks and Recreation Park N’ Ski permit which costs $25 per season per car, or $7.50...

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Coeur d'Alene's Tubbs Hill gets a facelift as region braces for increasing recreation

Coeur d'Alene's Tubbs Hill gets a facelift as region braces for increasing recreation

To learn more about Tubbs Hill and to see the online interpretive trail visit .Coeur d’Alene’s Tubbs Hill received a facelift in 2020 with new signs and better built trails improving an already beloved natural area.While the changes are geared toward improving recreational access, they’re also in preparation for a more crowded and busier future in the Lake City.“It’s getting more popular and obviously more use,” said George Sayler, a board member of the Friends of Tubbs Hill group. “So, the maintenance becomes more important.”A decade ago, Coeur d’Alene park officials estimated 500,000...

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Washington wildlife commissioners approve limited hound training program

Washington wildlife commissioners approve limited hound training program

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife Commission approved a limited hound pursuit training program on Friday.The program will allow agency-approved hound handlers to nonlethally pursue cougars, bears or bobcats to train their dogs. .The training is necessary, according to WDFW and hound handlers, to keep the dogs trained and effective. to use dogs to hunt or pursue black bears, cougars or bobcats if there is “a public safety need; to protect livestock, domestic animals, and private property; for scientific purposes; or to protect endangered species.”Due to a 1996 citizen initiative...

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Jan 29
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Washington boating bill aims to regulate human-powered watercraft in the same way as motorboats

Washington boating bill aims to regulate human-powered watercraft in the same way as motorboats

A Washington bill aimed at regulating human-powered watercraft in the same way as motorboats is being criticized by some local paddlers.“Personally, I’m opposed,” Spokane River Forum executive director Andy Dunau said. “Trying to regulate by creating a course will create a bureaucratic burden that is not helpful. What we need to be focusing on is ordinances and measures focusing on wearing personal flotation devices.”would require canoes, kayaks and paddle board participants to take a boater education course, pass an exam and carry a boater education card.Rep. John Lovick (D-Mill Creek), a...

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Jan 28
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League of Women Voters Washington: Civics education is crucial to making our democracy work

League of Women Voters Washington: Civics education is crucial to making our democracy work

This column reflects the opinion of the writer. To learn about the differences between a news story and an opinion column, .Recent events in our country have raised serious concerns about the strength of our democratic system of government, which demands an informed electorate engaged in its civic responsibilities. We are gravely concerned about the lack of understanding of the electoral process as well as the lack of trust in free elections in our country.Education based on truth is essential to the future of American democracy and to the security of our nation, in protecting us from...

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Jan 29
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Study: Overheated grizzly bears, particularly pregnant ones, love a cold bath

Study: Overheated grizzly bears, particularly pregnant ones, love a cold bath

Overheated grizzly bears, particularly pregnant ones, love a cold bath.Those are the findings from a study led by University of Idaho graduate student Savannah Rogers and associate professor of wildlife sciences Ryan Long. Their research, , shows that grizzly bears in Yellowstone National Park bathe in cool water to prevent overheating.“We show that behavior is already an important strategy for grizzly bears to avoid heat stress and will only become more important as temperatures rise,” said Rogers in an email.The conclusion, while intuitive, sheds light on grizzly bear behavior made famous...

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Jan 18
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Trump is blocking aid to Malden, Pine City fire victims over beef with Inslee, McMorris Rodgers aide says

Trump is blocking aid to Malden, Pine City fire victims over beef with Inslee, McMorris Rodgers aide says

More than four months after a wildfire tore through Malden and Pine City, President Donald Trump is withholding federal aid to help residents rebuild their lives because of his personal animosity toward Gov. Jay Inslee, an aide to Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers said.“The holdup now is the relationship between the president and Gov. Inslee,” said the Spokane Republican’s aide, who requested anonymity to speak candidly.Trump has 21 major disaster declaration requests since the Babb Fire destroyed approximately 80% of homes in the Whitman County towns on Sept. 7, including a request for wildfires...

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Jan 16
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Trump trial pending, McConnell calls it 'vote of conscience'

Trump trial pending, McConnell calls it 'vote of conscience'

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s is likely to start after Joe Biden’s inauguration, and the Republican leader, Mitch McConnell, is telling senators their decision on whether to convict the outgoing president over the Capitol riot will be a “vote of conscience.”The timing for the trial, the , has not yet been set. But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made it clear Friday that Democrats intend to move swiftly on to speed up vaccinations and send Americans relief. Biden is set to take the oath of office Wednesday.Pelosi called the recovery package a “matter of complete urgency.”The uncertainty...

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Jan 15
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Trump impeachment trial could begin on Inauguration Day

Trump impeachment trial could begin on Inauguration Day

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s impeachment trial could begin on Inauguration Day, just as Democrat Joe Biden takes the oath of office in an ever-more-extraordinary end to the defeated president’s tenure in the White House.The timing is not set and depends heavily on when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi decides to transmit the article of impeachment to the Senate. Democrats hoping to avoid interrupting Biden’s inauguration have suggested holding back until the new president has a chance to get his administration going.What is clear is that the trial will be unlike any other in the nation’s...

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North Idaho internet provider blocking Facebook, Twitter upon request over censorship claims

North Idaho internet provider blocking Facebook, Twitter upon request over censorship claims

A North Idaho internet service provider is blocking access to Facebook and Twitter for customers upon request in response to claims of censorship after President Donald Trump’s accounts were suspended on both platforms.Twitter , a day after indefinite suspensions of Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts were announced to President-elect Joe Biden.On Sunday afternoon, YourT1Wifi circulated an email to customers about calls from users to have those sites blocked. In response, representatives said YourT1Wifi would block Facebook, Twitter “and any other website that may also be Censoring”...

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Jan 11
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Pro-Trump rally in Coeur d'Alene cheers when speaker announces that D.C. rioters were 'taking out Pence'

Pro-Trump rally in Coeur d'Alene cheers when speaker announces that D.C. rioters were 'taking out Pence'

About 300 people gathered at the corner of Highway 95 and Appleway Avenue in Coeur d’Alene on Wednesday to laud President Donald Trump as a fighter against tyranny, label the recent elections as fraudulent and encourage supporters to “fight back.”The event was organized by the group North Idaho Freedom Fighters. Honking horns and the cheering crowd at times drowned out the two speakers. Those attending carried American flags and Trump flags in addition to signs that said things like “We the people resist,” “Stop the Steal” and “Idaho is Trump Country.”Organizer Amy McCamly urged the...

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Jan 6
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New commissioners and lawsuits have some saying hunting is under attack in Washington

New commissioners and lawsuits have some saying hunting is under attack in Washington

Hunting is under attack in Washington.At least that’s the assessment of Kim Thorburn, a Washington Department of Fish and Game commissioner from Spokane.“I’m pretty upset about what’s going on,” she said. “We’re looking at hunters as an enemy.”Although she believes the assault has been brewing for a long time, Thorburn points to a recently filed lawsuit looking to outlaw and last year’s ban on .“They just come one item at a time,” she said.Meanwhile, the appointment of two new WDFW commissioners by Gov. Jay Inslee has drawn criticism s. Some environmental organizations praised the...

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Jan 10
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Cathy McMorris Rodgers reverses course, will vote to certify Electoral College results after pro-Trump mob raids Capitol

Cathy McMorris Rodgers reverses course, will vote to certify Electoral College results after pro-Trump mob raids Capitol

WASHINGTON – Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers reversed course Wednesday afternoon and said she will no longer object to the certification of Electoral College results in Congress, after a violent crowd of President Donald Trump’s supporters raided the Capitol building, interrupting the joint session and causing a lockdown.“What we have seen today is unlawful and unacceptable. I have decided I will vote to uphold the Electoral College results and I encourage Donald Trump to condemn and put an end to this madness.”The Spokane Republican The Spokesman-Review on Tuesday she planned to object to the...

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Jan 6
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Washington, Idaho officials join both sides of latest presidential election challenge

Washington, Idaho officials join both sides of latest presidential election challenge

Elected officials from Washington and Idaho joined both sides of the U.S. Supreme Court battle Thursday over the 2020 presidential election results.Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson announced the state was joining a to join on the side of the four states that are defending the results showing that Democrat Joe Biden won and is entitled to their Electoral College votes.Ferguson called the and joined by 17 other Republican state attorneys general, an attack on democracy.“This lawsuit has no legal or factual basis,” he said. “It will not succeed in overturning the will of the...

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Dec 10
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For the first time in more than 80 years, salmon spawning in the upper Columbia River

For the first time in more than 80 years, salmon spawning in the upper Columbia River

For the first time in more than a generation, chinook salmon have spawned in the upper Columbia River system.Colville Tribal biologists counted 36 redds (a gravely nest in which female salmon lay their eggs) along an 8-mile stretch of the Sanpoil River, a tributary of the Columbia, in September.“I was shocked at first, then I was just overcome with complete joy,” said Crystal Conant, a Colville Tribal member from the Arrow Lakes and SanPoil bands. “I don’t know that I have the right words to even explain the happiness and the healing.”The news is a step toward full reintroduction of the...

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Dec 17
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'The decision is yours': Schweitzer threatens closure if mask mandate not taken seriously

'The decision is yours': Schweitzer threatens closure if mask mandate not taken seriously

With most resorts already open or opening this week, eager skiers are asking how's the snow? This is what we know as of Thursday.As for COVID-19 restrictions and closures, Tom Stebbins, an administrator for Ski the Northwest Rockies, urges skiers and boarders to check resort's websites before they go because "every resort has a slightly different tweak."For more information visit the National Ski Areas Association's 'Ski Well, Be Well' recommendations at .Opened Nov. 28.Base: 15”Summit: 19”Opened Nov. 14.Base: 9”Summit: 24”Opening Saturday.Base: 15”Summit: 24”Nov. 27Base:17”Summit:...

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Dec 3
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Volunteers 'shaken' after attempted bombing at Spokane County Democrats headquarters

Volunteers 'shaken' after attempted bombing at Spokane County Democrats headquarters

Police are investigating an attempted bombing at the Spokane County Democrats office on North Division Street Wednesday afternoon.Nicole Bishop, chair of the local Democrats, said she wasn’t at the office today, but a volunteer told her a man came in and handed her a paper.He asked the volunteer if she knew what it meant and she said she didn’t, Bishop said. The man then said, “it’s a manifesto and I have a bomb,” Bishop said.The volunteer could see wires coming from his bag, Bishop said.Bishop said she didn’t know if there was an explosion, but there is a small fire which she believes...

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Dec 9
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Apple lobbying against bill aimed at stopping forced labor in China

Apple lobbying against bill aimed at stopping forced labor in China

Apple lobbyists are trying to weaken a new law aimed at preventing forced labor in China, according to two congressional staffers familiar with the matter, highlighting the clash between its business imperatives and its official stance on human rights.The Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act would require U.S. companies to guarantee they do not use imprisoned or coerced workers from the predominantly Muslim region of Xinjiang, where academic researchers estimate the Chinese government has placed more than 1 million people into internment camps. Apple is heavily dependent on Chinese...

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Reed Albergotti
Nov 20
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Idaho Sen. Jim Risch weighs in on changing tone in Congress and a Biden presidency

Idaho Sen. Jim Risch weighs in on changing tone in Congress and a Biden presidency

WASHINGTON – With the Senate back to work after an election that saw a strong showing from GOP congressional candidates, U.S. Sen. Jim Risch said Friday he was confident Democrats and Republicans will come together to avert a potential government shutdown but less optimistic about lawmakers striking a deal for another coronavirus relief package before the end of the year.The Idaho Republican, fresh off decisively winning a third term, spoke with The Spokesman-Review at the end of the Senate’s first week of the “lame duck” session before the new Congress is sworn in Jan. 3. He said the tone...

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Nov 14
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Washington voters approve comprehensive sex ed with Referendum 90

Washington voters approve comprehensive sex ed with Referendum 90

Public schools in Washington will be required to teach comprehensive sexual health multiple times during a student’s K-12 education after voters approved Referendum 90, according to Tuesday’s early results.The vote was split about 60-40 in Tuesday’s first vote count.The referendum sparked a bitter debate throughout Washington since it was first put on the ballot in June. Opponents of the sex ed bill that passed last session to bring the question to voters in November.The bill, which was signed by Gov. Jay Inslee in March, would require all school districts in Washington to teach...

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Nov 3
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Editorial: With misgivings, vote Trump for president and Inslee for governor

Editorial: With misgivings, vote Trump for president and Inslee for governor

Endorsements and editorials are made solely by the ownership of this newspaper. As is the case at most newspapers across the nation, The Spokesman-Review newsroom and its editors are not a part of this endorsement process. to learn more.The Spokesman-Review has endorsed candidates for more than 70 years. Our endorsements reflect the publisher’s views and are made independently of news coverage.Over the decades, publishers have shifted from solidly Republican to a more centrist, pragmatic and pro-business view, prioritizing candidates and policies that would best serve the Inland...

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Oct 25
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