Friday, August 19, 2016

State halts culling of Profanity Peak wolf pack as cattle attacks end

State wildlife managers have ended their mission to reduce the number of wolves in a cattle-killing pack in Ferry County after about two weeks of effort and no further attacks on livestock. However, the lethal removal operation will restart if another wolf attack on livestock is confirmed, said Donny Martroello, Washington Fish and Wildlife Department wolf program leader. State wildlife staffers shot and killed two Profanity Peak pack wolves from a helicopter on Aug. 5, the first day of the operation. The effort was authorized by department Director Jim Unsworth after five wolf-caused cattle mortalities were confirmed since mid-July on the rangelands between Republic and Kettle Falls. The Diamond M Ranch cattle were on Colville National Forest a grazing allotment. Since Aug. 3, when the last of those attacks was confirmed, WDFW has found no evidence of any additional depredations by wolves in that area, Martorello said. “The goal of removing some wolves from the pack was to stop wolf attacks on area cattle herds,” Martorello said. “The last confirmed depredation by the pack was two weeks ago, but we are prepared to resume operations to remove wolves if monitoring efforts confirm new attacks.” WDFW staff will continue to track the wolves’ movements by monitoring GPS signals from radio-collars attached to two pack members, he said...more

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