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Home » Archives » August 2017 » State To Kill More Wolves, Petition Against Started In Response

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08/27/2017: "State To Kill More Wolves, Petition Against Started In Response"

ig_A_Wolf_Cub-01 (103k image)

State wildlife managers plan to take lethal action against a wolf pack that has repeatedly preyed on livestock in Ferry County during the past two months.

Jim Unsworth, director of the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) authorized field staff to lethally remove one or more members of the Sherman wolf pack, which was involved in four documented occasions of predations on livestock since mid-June.

Seattle resident Daniel Homberg believes WDFL is taking the route by putting radio receivers on a member of the pack and then killing then at will, while “non-lethal methods of protecting livestock are dismissed out of hand and rarely given an honest chance of working.”
Homberg has started a petition to “ban on livestock feeding on public lands unless ranchers are willing to accept the risk of feeding their stock (almost for free) in wild wolf habitat.”
So why the latest Previous Story kill order? According to WDFL “At least three calves were killed and one was injured by members of the pack, according to investigations conducted by WDFW field staff. The pack is estimated to have at least two members " including one fitted with a tracking collar " although a survey last winter indicated there were five members in the pack.”

Martorello noted that the rancher who lost livestock to predation by the Sherman pack employed a variety of non-lethal deterrents before lethal measure were approved. The rancher engaged multiple range riders to patrol his herd in a leased grazing area on a near-daily basis.

"This rancher has made concerted efforts to protect his livestock using non-lethal measures, and has met the department's prerequisite for lethal action," he said. "Our goal is to change the pack's behavior before the situation gets worse."

Martorello said the situation also meets the department's condition for lethal action that predation by a wolf pack occur three times in a 30-day period or four times in a 10-month period.

That condition is part of a protocol for wolf removal developed by WDFW in conjunction with an 18-member advisory group that represents the concerns of environmentalists, hunters, and livestock ranchers.

The Sherman and Smackout packs are two of 20 wolf packs documented in Washington state by WDFW in 2016. According to state surveys, the state's wolf population is currently growing at a rate of about 30 percent each year.

For more information about wolf management actions, see Update on Washington Wolves at

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