Letter to the Editor: Americans want to preserve wolves
Lebanon Junction, Kentucky
Interesting definition of words in your article “livestock industry groups launch campaign supporting state management of gray wolf populations”
“Responsibly manage” in Montana means kill half of a population, with the goal of driving wolf populations to a remnant, token, constantly persecuted population. Idaho is worse, where wolves are snared in wilderness areas for daring to eat their natural prey, despite the overwhelming scientific evidence that it is weather, and quality of food that causes elk population shifts. In Wyoming, wolves are killed at will any time, with young or without in 85 percent of the state.
Maybe for wolf haters this is “responsibly manage,” but you aren’t fooling the vast majority of Americans that actually WANT to preserve biological integrity of wild and public lands and have healthy and appropriate predator populations.
“Exceeded recovery goals” – yes, the target goal was 150 wolves in each Rocky Mountain state, but that was never meant to be the end goal. Like when you are released from the hospital there are numbers you are supposed to attain, but you are supposed to continue to get better.
“Populations exploding” – Montana’s wolf population is LESS, as is Wyoming’s and Idaho’s. Oregon’s and Washington’s wolf populations are “the highest since the Endangered Species Act was enacted,” but in both states that’s less than a dozen more wolves. Hardly an explosion.
We’d like to see state management that acts like all citizens matter, that encourages non-lethal deterrence and aims for the health of ecosystems and biodiversity. Right now state management means “kill more wolves.” You’re not fooling us and we don’t like it.