Breaking! Washington Wildlife Agency Just Authorized Devastating Kill Orders For Two More Endangered Wolf Packs

Yesterday, Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife Director Kelly Susewind authorized the killing of wolves in the Smackout pack in Stevens County, and the remaining wolves of the Togo pack in Ferry County. The Department has already been trying since October 27th to kill the last adult and pup of the Old Profanity Territory pack in Ferry County.

“We’re devastated that Washington officials are still killing more endangered wolves when science shows it won’t reduce livestock loss or improve tolerance for these misunderstood animals,” said Noah Greenwald, endangered species director at the Center for Biological Diversity in a statement. “Three kill operations going at once on an endangered species by a state wildlife agency is very disturbing. They’re wiping out pack after pack, mostly at the behest of one livestock owner.”

Since 2012 the state has killed 21 endangered wolves, 17 of whom were killed for the same livestock operator, a longtime, vocal opponent of wolf recovery. The shocking operation to kill the OPT pack’s alpha wolf and only remaining pup is on behalf of the same sub-human. It is not clear if that is the case for the kill order issued yesterday on the members of the Smackout pack.

In September, the Department killed the father wolf of the Togo pack, leaving his mate to fend for their two pups on her own. In October, the Department killed the breeding female of the Old Profanity Territory pack and a five-month-old pup from the pack, leaving the breeding male on his own to provide for the sole remaining pup.

Both kill actions made it more likely that the adults would attack more livestock, since livestock are easier prey than deer or elk for a lone wolf to successfully hunt. In both instances that proved to be the case, and even though it was the Department’s own actions that set these packs up for more conflict, the Department shockingly intends to eradicate both wolf families.

Washingtonians overwhelmingly support wolf recovery,” said Greenwald. “Restoring these beautiful, intelligent animals will result in some loss of livestock, which is why the state compensates ranchers for their losses. But wildlife officials should not continue to kill this still endangered species.”

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