Gray wolves are listed as endangered throughout the state of Washington but that hasn’t stopped the state’s Department of Fish and Wildlife from initiating a program that takes aim at a beloved pack.
In 2016 the “Smackout” pack was numbered at 8, but it has since welcomed several pups. It is one of only 20 packs in the entire state. The once numerous predator was nearly wiped out by farmers and hunters who believed they had more right to the land than the other animals that shared the land.
Unfortunately, this mentality still persists today. Farmers have complained that the wolves are threatening their cattle and now the state has decided to do something about it. Already 2 wolves have received a silver bullet.
Yet, the culling of wolves to protect livestock isn’t likely to work. In fact, targeting a pack could actually make things worse since family groups become separated and they no longer have the capability to target their natural, wild prey like elk and deer. This has the unwanted effect of making domesticated animals like cattle and sheep their prefered prey.
Gray wolves are still a threatened species and their survival should take precedence over the incidental loss of livestock. Instead of killing them, farmers and DFW need to create better policies that will protect both the wolf and their livestock.
Sign the petition and tell the Washington DFW to end the killing of the Smackout wolves.