Kill order reinstated for wolves after livestock attacks in Colville National Forest

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) reactivated its kill order for wolves of the Old Profanity Territory Pack in Ferry County. This comes in response to livestock losses on public grazing lands in the Colville National Forest.

The order is effective July 31, 2019.

Over the last three years, there have been multiple conflicts with wolves on the grazing land allotments. Public land livestock operations conducted by Diamond M. Ranch have resulted in the elimination of several wolf packs – including the Wedge Pack in 2012, the Profanity Peak Pack in 2016, the Sherman Pack in 2017. They also removed wolves from the Sherman and Togo Packs in 2018.

The Lands Council has requested that WDFW take a different approach, mainly by moving livestock out of prime wolf habitat, rather than killing the wolf packs.

“It is time for the Forest Service to use the flexibility built in to allotment agreements to shut down these areas of chronic conflict,” said Chris Bachman of The Lands Council. “It is evident at this point, grazing in an area of prime wolf habitat is folly. This is an area where livestock will continue to fall prey to wolves. We need to find effective sustainable solutions. Each time wolves have been removed due to conflicts with Diamond M cattle, more wolves move in to occupy the area. It’s time to try moving the cattle instead.”

The Lands Council stated that livestock grazing should not take precedence over native wildlife. WDFW told us that they try to consider all options, but at the moment the kill order is the most effective method.