Thursday, June 05, 2014

Oregon confirms wolves killed sheep in attack northeast of Enterprise

The wolves howling in Wallowa County just before midnight on May 29 brought trouble. A sheepherder's warning shots, fired from a .22, didn't keep them away. Nor did three Pyrenees guard dogs. The attack on private land on the Zumwalt Prairie northeast of Enterprise, confirmed by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, killed three lambs and injured 20 sheep. The location and appearance of bite wounds appeared to be from wolves, the agency said. Though the attack is within the area of the Imnaha Pack, an ODFW spokeswoman said the department isn't certain whether the pack is involved. It could take several days to reach any conclusions, said the spokeswoman, Michelle Dennehy. That pack already has one confirmed attack this year, a Jan. 30 incident that killed one sheep. The January incident was a formal strike under Oregon law for the Imnaha Pack. Under the terms of a 2013 settlement between ranchers, environmental groups and the state, once a pack has four strikes in a six-month period, the state can kill the wolves involved. The January attack expires as a qualifying incident on June 30...more

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