On 5 August, biologists from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife ascended in a helicopter to shoot two members of the Profanity Peak wolf pack, which had been preying on cattle in the state’s northeast corner. After the cull failed to end predation, the state removed four more members of the 11-wolf pack. Some conservationists were outraged, but the logic behind such lethal control seems airtight: Remove livestock-killing wolves, coyotes, bears, and other predators, and you’ll protect farmers and ranchers from future losses
The start of the new year was like déjà vu for cattle rancher Ted Birdseye in southwest Oregon.Birdseye, who runs the Mill-Mar Ranch in rural Jackson County, awoke on Jan. 1 to find an injured, 5-month-old calf about 200 yards from his house, with 2 feet of intestine sticking out of its backside. Wildlife officials arrived later in the day to investigate, and later confirmed the calf was attacked by wolves from the Rogue pack. It was almost a year ago to the day that Birdseye lost his first animal to the Rogue pack, a 250-pound calf partially eaten in a fenced pasture on the property. The wolves returned again the following week, killing and eating two more calves down to the rib cage and spinal column.
Breanna Owens had no idea where to turn for help when the wolves arrived. The northern California-based rancher used to take her cattle to graze each summer in Oregon, but in 2014, OR-7, a solitary wolf dubbed Journey, found a mate and produced a litter of pups in the vicinity of Owens’ herd. The Rogue pack was the first in the area in generations.“All of a sudden it’s, ‘Oh, he set up camp. And there’s a female. And there’s pups – oh my gosh!’” she recalled.
Wolves in northern Ferry County have attacked at least two calves and probably two more in the past several days, apparently crossing the threshold for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife to consider culling the pack.As of Friday morning, the department had not announced whether the attacks were by a known pack. It also had not issued notice that it will remove wolves. The department has pledged to give one business-day notice before targeting a pack. The notice gives environmental groups time to go to court and seek a restraining order.
At least two wolf pups were observed on the southern flanks of Mount Hood earlier this month, marking the first time a breeding pair of Wolves has been seen in the northern Cascades since the endangered canids first returned to Oregon around a decade ago.
OLYMPIA – State wildlife officials can kill an injured wolf in a pack that has been preying on cattle in northeast Washington, a Thurston County Superior Court judge ruled Friday.Judge Carol Murphy refused to extend a court order against Department of Fish and Wildlife plans to kill a male wolf in the Togo pack, saying the environmental groups opposing those plans had not met the legal burden to continue the temporary restraining order issued Aug. 20.Department director Kelly Susewind said staff would proceed with plans to kill the wolf, which has been located and appears to have a broken leg but remains mobile.At 5 p.m., when the temporary restraining order expired, department staff in the area occupied by the pack were authorized to shoot and kill the wolf.