Breaking! Washington Wildlife Agency Authorizes The Killing Of The Last 2 Members Of An Endangered Wolf Pack
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife Director Kelly Susewind today issued a new order authorizing the killing of the last two remaining wolves of the Old Profanity Territory pack in Ferry County. The targeted wolves are likely the pack’s last pup and its breeding male.
The decision to kill wolves was made despite the fact that the cattle involved in a recent livestock predation were on a public lands grazing allotment past October 15th, when the rancher was legally required to remove his cattle.
“It’s gut-wrenching that Washington’s wildlife managers are wiping out an entire wolf pack on public lands to satisfy the livestock industry,” said Amaroq Weiss, West Coast wolf advocate at the Center for Biological Diversity in a statement. “Washington residents have made it clear that they support wolf recovery, but state officials seem intent on gunning them down again and again. It’s disgusting.”
In early October, multiple calves were found with two-week-old injuries from wolves. Tragically, they had been left on the range, even though it is well known that injured animals draw predators.
The latest predation was found October 23rd, eight days past the date the cattle were required by the terms of the grazing permit to be removed. As of today, the state wildlife department reports that 20 to 35 cow-calf pairs still remain onsite.
Since 2012, Washington has killed 21 state-endangered wolves, 17 of which were killed for the same livestock owner. That rancher is a vocal opponent of wolf recovery who has historically refused to implement meaningful nonlethal measures designed to protect his livestock from wolves.
“Washington residents are fed up with wolf-management policies that reward livestock owners for irresponsible business practices,” continued Weiss. “The wildlife department’s responsibility is to preserve and protect the state’s wildlife, not slaughter endangered wolves to keep the livestock industry happy.”
The state also killed two members of the Old Profanity Territory pack for him this summer, shooting a five-month-old pup and then the pup’s mother. Cattle were drawn to a salt block near the pack’s rendezvous site, but the salt block was not removed. And though the agency recommended moving cattle out of the area, many still remain.