Defenders of Wildlife is deeply saddened by the loss of these wolves. Even as the overall population of wolves in the state is expanding, the death of four wolves is tragic.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Loss of Four Wolves in Washington State
Delayed report finally gives update on wolf activities in Washington state
In a long-delayed report, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) detailed the deaths of four wolves in Washington state. In two separate incidents earlier this year, but only reported now by WDFW, two wolves were struck and killed by vehicles in northeast Washington. Two additional wolf deaths also were recorded, but are still being investigated.
The report also gave updates on coexistence efforts – including expanded deployment of range riders on public lands to prevent wolf-livestock conflicts as well as increased coordination with the U.S. Forest Service regarding protection of wolf den sites on national forest lands.
Shawn Cantrell, Northwest director for Defenders of Wildlife, issued this statement:
“Defenders of Wildlife is deeply saddened by the loss of these wolves. Even as the overall population of wolves in the state is expanding, the death of four wolves is tragic.
“We are also frustrated by the slow release of key wolf conservation information by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), particularly two wolves that were hit by cars dating back to April. Such delays in informing the public of the accidental deaths of these wolves is contrary to WDFW’s commitment to provide monthly updates to the public. We will continue to press for timely release of information related to wolf deaths.
“WDFW’s focus on coexistence efforts in this report is heartening. Use of nonlethal methods are a proven way to reduce wolf-livestock conflicts, and we look forward to helping ensure these protective measures are properly installed and implemented.”
In the 2011 wolf management plan and affirmed in June 2017 in the revised “Wolf-livestock interaction protocol,” WDFW committed to providing regular updates on wolf conservation measures to the public. These reports have been consistently delayed, with this most recent report covering accidental wolf losses all the way back to March.
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