Help Stop the Wolf Carnage in Idaho
(Photo:Dave Stamboulis Travel Photography/Getty Images)
about the petition
It’s no secret that Idaho has declared war on its wolf population. But few people realize just how far Idaho has gone in its effort to dramatically reduce that population.
Idaho has contracted with Wildlife Services to help kill wolves to boost Idaho’s elk population for sport hunters. It will no longer be able to excuse the wolf killing as protecting livestock—Wildlife Services will be killing wolves for trying to live off their natural prey.
Wildlife Services often is indiscriminate in the wolves it kills. Just last week, Wildlife Services shooters under contract with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife mistakenly killed the alpha female of the Huckleberry pack in Washington state, throwing that pack’s future into jeopardy.
Please take immediate action and tell the secretary of agriculture to order Wildlife Services to stand down in Idaho!
To: Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack
I have recently learned that Wildlife Services has been granted $225,000 by the state of Idaho’s Wolf Control Board to be used exclusively for the accelerated lethal control of wolves within that state. I am writing to you today urging you to personally intervene and terminate this new agreement with Idaho immediately. Idaho’s archaic and discredited wolf management policies present a significant threat to the continued recovery of wolves in the Northern Rockies. It is shocking that Wildlife Services has agreed to participate in this reckless and unscientific assault on such an important apex predator.
Idaho has set its sights on reducing its wolf population by 80 percent. I am seriously concerned that an agency under your control would willingly agree to act as a hired gun for Idaho in this ecological tragedy.
As the head of the federal department in which Wildlife Services operates, I’m urging you to direct Wildlife Services to immediately halt any further involvement with the Idaho Wolf Control Board’s wolf-killing program—specifically, that you immediately direct Wildlife Services to return any funding that it has received from the Control Board and to impose the following restrictions on the agency’s actions in Idaho:
- It should take immediate action to ensure full compliance for its predator control actions in Idaho with its environmental analyses responsibilities under NEPA and prepare an environmental impact statement;
- It should not conduct any further lethal control actions against wolves for the purpose of managing ungulate populations; and
- It should not conduct any lethal control actions against wolves for livestock depredation unless nonlethal deterrents and tools have first been correctly implemented and have proved to be ineffective.
For the reasons stated above, I am requesting that Wildlife Services terminate its agreement with the state of Idaho, which would undermine decades of work and investment to restore the gray wolf to the Northern Rockies.
[Your name here]
Please visit for more info.
The Wolf Conservation Center teaches people about wolves, their relationship to the environment and the human role in protecting their future.
The Wolf Conservation Center (WCC), founded in 1999 by Hélène Grimaud, is a private, not-for-profit environmental education organization located in South Salem, NY. The WCC’s mission is to promote wolf conservation by teaching about wolves, their relationship to the environment, and the human role in protecting their future. The WCC accomplishes this mission through onsite and offsite education programs emphasizing wolf biology, the ecological benefits of wolves and other large predators, and the current status of wolf recovery in the United States.
The WCC also participates in the Species Survival Plan (SSP) and Recovery Plan for two critically endangered wolf species, the Mexican gray wolf (Canis lupus baileyi) and the red wolf (Canis rufus). The Mexican gray wolf and the red wolf are among the rarest mammals in North America, both species at one time were completely extinct in the wild. Presently there are approximately 400 Mexican gray wolves and 300 red wolves remaining in the world, the majority living within the network of facilities like the WCC participating in the SSP. Every one of these endangered wolves in captivity is a part of something bigger than their pack and the facilities that house them. These special canids are integral parts of the recovery of their rare species. Many of these wolves contribute as ambassadors, living on view at a variety of zoos throughout the United States to help people learn about the importance of their wild counterparts. The WCC’s 2 SSP exhibits offers visitors to the Center an opportunity to behold these species and our 8 WildEarthTV webcams extend 4 wolf families to a global audience. Some of these education wolves can also contribute to the revitalization of their species more directly as participants of the SSP Wolf Captive Breeding program. A special faction of captive wolves, however, can have the most direct impact on the conservation of their species as well as their ancestral habitat in the wilds of North America. These wolves are candidates for release into the wild. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), under the Endangered Species Act, is re-introducing Mexican gray wolves and red wolves to portions of their historic range, and 2 wolves from the WCC have been given this greatest opportunity – a chance to bring an ecosystem back to balance.
Looking forward, the WCC aims to become the pre-eminent facility in the Eastern United States for the captive breeding and pre-release of endangered canid species, and to continue expanding our education and outreach programs to communities far beyond the gates of our facility.
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