In the past few years Washington's Department of Fish and Wildlife has acted in ways that seriously call into question the agency's motives.
In 2012 and 2014, agency officials killed the Wedge pack and the only breeding female of the Huckleberry pack for conflicts with livestock without fully trying nonlethal measures. And since 2012 the agency has actively lobbied the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to strip federal protections from the state's wolves.
Now we've learned that the department's Director James Unsworth recently wrote a letter to a congressman urging him to help strip federal protections from wolves in Washington wherever these animals are protected by the Endangered Species Act.
The director's move reeks of backdoor politics, but its logic -- that killing more wolves will lead to fewer livestock conflicts -- is also just wrong. Washington State University researchers recently published a scientific paper debunking this myth: Fragmenting wolf packs actually increases the incidence of livestock depredations.
May 27, 2015 Action Alert ID# 226
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