Wolf Control Efforts
I’m Lacy Gray with Washington Ag Today.
This has been a rough year for several ranchers in Northeast Washington due to relentless wolf attacks that have left large numbers of sheep and cattle dead and others severely maimed; despite non-lethal wolf management efforts, such as full time guard dogs and rotating grazing areas. Thus frustrations have been mounting regarding wolf management, as was evident during two recent meetings held with the state Department of Fish and Wildlife in Colville and Lynnwood. Washington cattleman Jack Field.
FIELD: There were some fairly heated moments but the Department came in and basically gave an update. And I think the biggest concern, and it’s a very valid concern, when you look at the map the northeast corner of Washington state has disproportionately been impacted thus far through the recolonization of wolves. When you look at the Department of Fish and Wildlife’s map they have little polygons that would outline the confirmed or potential wolf packs and it just looks from Ferry, Stevens, and Pend Oreille counties, as well as the eastern side of Okanogan county, that complete northeast corner of the state is just covered in wolf packs. And as a result we’ve also seen a high incident of wolf issues have occurred in that area.
Fish and Wildlife efforts to address management issues with the Huckleberry Pack and the Ruby Pack have included both non-lethal and lethal methods. Tomorrow Field will talk more about wolf recovery efforts and federal delisting requirements for the gray wolf, as well as the necessary steps in dealing with chronically depredating wolves.
That’s Washington Ag Today.
I’m Lacy Gray on the Ag Information Network.