December 16, 2019

Oregon Court Accepts RMEF’s Brief in Wolf Lawsuit

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*Editor’s Note* – It is not clear from RMEF’s quote by CEO and President David Allen, “We stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, its professional biologists and wildlife managers, and the Fish and Wildlife Commission in carrying out their duty of managing all of Oregon’s wildlife,” precisely what this means. Certainly, one should not expect that the RMEF would blindly and willingly support and approve every action of the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW). So, I am assuming this statement is in reference ONLY to supporting the ODFW in thwarting the lawsuit brought on by environmentalists.

However, the presser below further describes the State of Oregon’s management plan for wolves offering protections of wolves that obviously involve promoting them within settled landscapes.

In a recent article I was reading on the Wolf Education International website, the world organization posted it’s position specifically about the perpetuation and protection of wild or semi-wild hybrid canines and in general concerning doing so in settled landscapes, which essentially encourages conflicts with people, as well as property destruction, and the encouragement of further hybridization of the canine species.  Here is that WEI position statement: It is the position of the majority members of Wolf Education International that the breeding, perpetuation and protection of hybrid, and/or canine mixtures, in the wild and under the claim of sustaining a wolf species or subspecies, is wrong scientifically as well as poses a direct threat to public safety, health, and private property. WEI supports sustaining real wolves in wild places, where they are acceptable to those communities asked to live with them not in settled landscapes where conflicts with the full range of human presence, human activities, and the costs of managing wolves and their impacts are not acceptable and sensibly judged to be prohibitive.”

I would at least encourage the RMEF, if they don’t already, to consider publicly supporting (and making a statement) this position of the members of Wolf Education International to stop forcing any wild canines into settled landscapes. Showing support for this continued action not only perpetuates a continued threat to human safety and health, and the destruction of property, but is just as seriously is destroying the very wolf species they are trying to protect. It makes little sense at all.

Press Release from the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation:

MISSOULA, Mont.—The Oregon Court of Appeals granted the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation’s application to file a friend-of-the-Court brief in a lawsuit by animal rights groups seeking to eliminate state wildlife management in Oregon.

“We stand shoulder-to-shoulder with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, its professional biologists and wildlife managers, and the Fish and Wildlife Commission in carrying out their duty of managing all of Oregon’s wildlife,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. “Oregon’s science-based wolf plan indicates wolves reached delisting criteria five years ago.”

As of December 31, 2015, Oregon’s minimum wolf population estimate numbered 110, marking a 26 percent increase over the 2014 population and a 42 percent increase since 2013. Biologists also indicate the actual number of wolves currently in Oregon is likely greater than the minimum estimate.

The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission voted to delist wolves from the state Endangered Species Act (ESA) in November of 2015. The Oregon legislature ratified the commission’s decision by passing a bill, which was later signed into law, removing wolves from the state’s endangered species list. Those moves had no immediate effect on wolf management yet animal rights groups still filed suit seeking to reverse the delisting.

The state’s Wolf Conservation and Management Plan continues to guide management of the population in the western two-thirds of Oregon with ESA-like protections that prohibit the killing of any wolf. In northeast Oregon, where most of the wolves are found, the plan emphasizes non-lethal deterrence measures to resolve livestock conflicts but allows ranchers to shoot wolves caught in the act.

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