In Washington, it turns out, wolves and livestock are getting along better than the people who manage and study them.Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER), a national nonprofit specializing in government scientist whistleblower protection, in April filed a 12-page complaint against WSU officials, alleging the university punished and silenced Wielgus to placate ranchers and state legislators who objected to his research. WSU officials declined to comment for this story, citing possible litigation.
ENTERPRISE — Two Harl Butte Pack wolves were killed this week following a request by a group of Wallowa County ranchers.According to Michelle Dennehy, wildlife communications coordinator for Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, two uncollared adult wolves were killed by department staff — one Sunday and one Tuesday, on the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest east of Joseph.Seven head of cattle had been killed or wounded by the Harl Butte Pack between July 2016 and 2017. The last two incidents — a wounded calf and a dead calf — were confirmed in a five-day period. One half dozen upper Imnaha River ranchers collaboratively wrote a letter to the state in late July asking that the entire pack be killed. The state announced last week it would attempt to kill two members of the pack to quell the livestock loss.
An off-reservation wolf hunt has been approved by the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation.The tribes approved the hunting season in special session Thursday, in the so-called north half — a sweeping reach of country north of the tribe’s reservation boundary to the Canadian border, between the Okanogan and Columbia rivers.Colville Tribal Fish and Wildlife Director, Randy Friedlander noted the tribes opened a wolf hunting season on the south half in 2012, and last year saw the first wolf killed by a hunter -— who was actually out for deer, rattling antlers together to attract them.
Oregon wildlife officials will kill two adult wolves in Wallowa County this month at the request of ranchers who say the animals or their packmates have preyed on cattle on public and private lands for more than a year.The state announced plans for the killings Thursday afternoon. Department of Fish & Wildlife managers said the state will not target specific animals. Instead, officials will remove two adult uncollared animals in the Harl Butte pack sometimes in the next two weeks.
WDFW late this afternoon reported removing a second Smackout Pack wolf following a series of cattle depredations stretching back to last September.The agency will now see how the Northeast Stevens County wolves respond, with the hopes that they leave calves in the area alone. Five have been confirmed killed or injured, including two in the past month.
Arron Scotten wants to take the long route to the scene of the killings. He’s at the wheel of a steel-gray pickup truck winding down two-lane roads in the far northeast corner of Washington state, shotgun resting on the back seat, flip phone charging in the lighter, a pouch of Grizzly chewing tobacco in the cup holder. “See where those poplars are?” he asks, pointing down a valley ringed by rounded mountains and dotted with hayfields gently turning a golden fall yellow. “The caves up there are where my great-great-grandparents spent their first winter.” In the 1880s, Scotten’s forebears came by wagon to this area from Missouri, arriving too late to build a homestead before snow arrived.
On Thursday morning, July 20th, 2017, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) announced that due to recurring depredations on livestock exceeding the thresholds outlined in the state’s Protocol for Wolf-Livestock Interactions, the Department has initiated incremental lethal removal of members of the Smackout Wolf Pack.In a report on incidents to date, the Department detailed the extensive preventative and responsive actions taken by the ranchers within this pack’s territory. They also described a recent caught-in-the act incident involving a rancher within the Smackout Pack territory that occurred after several days of intense harassment and attempts to haze wolves away from livestock. That incident was investigated by WDFW Enforcement and was found to be consistent with state regulations.