The northern gray wolf has been basically hunted to the brink of extinction in the U.S. These wolves have many important roles in their ecosystems: they keep prey populations like deer in check and redistribute nutrients through hunting and movement patterns. Luckily, the population of northern gray wolves has been increasing, they are nowhere near stable and still require a great deal of support from scientists, conservationists, and activists.
On July 27th, was murdered after the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) put out a lethal removal order for one wolf in the pack. The catalyst for this order was another occurrence of wolves from the pack reportedly attacked livestock in the Kettle Range area. However, there are so many other ways to deal with wolf-livestock interactions. There have been many similar wolf-livestock interactions in the same area.
Killing wolves has not improved the situation. In fact, it might even make it worse, since killing wolves decreases pack size, making hunting in wilder areas more difficult. Plus, wolves’ natural habitats are getting smaller and smaller; it’s no wonder that the wolves would roam into human-developed areas. Zoë Hanley, Northwest Program Representative for Defenders of Wildlife described using lethal force as a “short-term Band-Aid approach “that has not and will not prevent ongoing conflicts.” She instead recommends that the U.S. Forest Service “promote grazing practices which reduce livestock vulnerability to predation.” Sign this petition to urge the WDFW to commit to stop killing wolves, and instead invest in their future!
To continue speaking up, sign these other petitions as well:
- Protect European Wolves from Slaughter
- Protect Red Wolves in North Carolina!
- Keep Gray Wolves Protected Under the Endangered Species Act
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