September 23, 2019

RMEF Praises Oregon Wolf Delisting

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*Editor’s Note* – The state of Oregon opting to remove the gray wolf from state protection under the state’s endangered species program, is a first step that essentially only allows for more flexibility in protecting livestock. This is not a bad thing. What is bad is that the continued direction the state is headed, will not mitigate wolf and livestock interaction problems. Oregon wolf managers clearly state that the wolf will be “managed” in an Endangered Species Act-like manner. Wolves cannot be “managed.” They can only be controlled. Until states develop strict guidelines that include the rights of men over the fake rights of wolves, little will change.

Chances are also very good that Environmentalists will sue and win, padding their bank accounts while propping up scarcity, along with hands-off resource protectionism.

Press Release from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation:

MISSOULA, Mont.—The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation lauds the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) for using scientific practices and procedures to remove wolves from state Endangered Species Act (ESA) protection.

“This is the right move. Oregon wolves are recovered,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. “ODFW is successfully following its wolf management plan which provides protection both from and for wolves down the road.”

In essence, the status change means very little regarding current Oregon wolf management but it does open the door to the possibility of a wolf hunt in the future.

Biologists maintain there is a minimum population of 81 wolves in Oregon with the majority located in the northeast corner of the state.

According to the ODFW Wolf Plan, any take of wolves is tightly regulated with non-lethal preventive measures regarding wolf-livestock conflict being the first choice of action by wildlife managers. There is no general hunting season of wolves allowed in any phase of the current plan which is due to be updated in the near future. Wolves in the western two-thirds of Oregon will continue to be managed with ESA-like protections until they reach the conservation objective of four breeding pairs for three consecutive years. Ranchers in northeast Oregon can shoot a wolf caught in the act of wounding, biting, killing or chasing livestock.

“The wolf plan has been working well and you are all responsible for that,” said Michael Finley, ODFW Commission chair, at the conclusion of a recent public hearing. “We will remember the merits of the wolf plan and the next one will be as good or better. You can all help that happen.”

In light of the delisting, several environmental organizations are already threatening legal action.

“There are groups that do very little on-the-ground wildlife conservation work. They view the wolf as a fundraising tool and file lawsuit after lawsuit to gum up the process of proper, balanced wildlife management. The hysteria over this delisting is based on nothing more than ideology and fundraising. They need to allow state wildlife managers to do their job in looking out for what’s best for all species of wildlife,” added Allen.

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