Thursday, October 6. It has been a week since state wildlife managers shot and killed another member of a Washington wolf pack. The wolves were killed to protect the livestock of nearby farmers. Though classified as endangered and protected by state law, there is also a caveat allowing them to be killed under certain conditions. Reportedly, the pack, known as the Profanity Peak pack, is left with one adult female and three juveniles. Believed to mate for life, there’s no knowing if the female will be able to survive on her own with three young wolves.
According to the Center for Biological Diversity, wolves currently occupy less than ten percent of their historic range. Wolves in Washington have the odds stacked against them when you combine many people’s fear of wolves with an already challenging environment (i.e. the highways that cut through the Cascades, significantly less elk for them to hunt than ever before, and an increasing number of people living near the highways in the mountains). Considering their innocence and critical role in maintaining a balanced ecosystem, it’s time we start really protecting our wolves.