Oregon’s Shame – OR4 And His Family Aerial Gunned For The Sacred Cow….

OR4 ODFW

April 3, 2016

Death rained down on OR4 and his family from the ODFW helicopter-death-ships last Thursday, March 31, 2016. I can’t imagine the terror he felt along with his mate, OR39, nicknamed Limpy, due to a damaging leg injury. It was like shooting ducks in a barrel, an old wolf and his crippled mate with their two terrified pups, trying to evade bullets coming from the sky. To me they represent every wolf who has ever been senselessly  killed for the sacred cow. Ranchers know wolves are a miniscule  threat to their bottom line, the main killer of cattle is non-predation, the main predator of cattle are coyotes and domestic dogs.  But facts don’t matter when it comes to wolves, they’re relentlessly demonized.

I can’t tell you the sadness I feel over this killing.  OR4 was a symbol of everything I thought was right about wolves returning to Oregon. He and his first mate, B-300, nicknamed Sophie, swam the Snake River from Idaho to form the first wolf pack to inhabit Oregon in sixty years. They were named the Imnaha Pack. OR4 and B-300 sired many pups, including the legendary OR7 and were the backbone of wolf recovery in Oregon.

Ranching is the single biggest threat to wolves in the Northern Rockies.  Wolves are harassed throughout their lives because of ranching and hunting. They tolerate endless collarings, just as OR4 did. It was a miracle he lived to be 10 years old, a real feat since he had several kill orders out on him during his life. Instead of  Oregon treasuring him for the amazing wolf he was, they filled him full of lead as their final tribute. This killing will forever be Oregon’s shame!

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Oregon Just Killed a Family of Wolves

Imnaha Pack Alpha Male OR4

TakePart.com 12 hours ago

The bullet he’d been dodging for many years finally caught up with the great Oregon wolf, OR4, on March 31. In the early afternoon, officials from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife shot to death the patriarch of the Imnaha Pack from a helicopter over Wallowa County, an area where gray wolves dispersing from Idaho first began returning to Oregon, where they’d been killed off in the mid-20th century. Shot along with OR4 was his likely pregnant partner, OR 39, known as Limpy for an injured and badly healed leg, and their two pups.

The animals were killed for being presumed guilty of the deaths of four calves and a sheep on private pastureland on the fringes of the pack’s territory in northeast Oregon.

Rob Klavins, who has been a wolf advocate on the frontlines of the cultural and political battles that have accompanied the reemergence of wolves in the West as field coordinator for the conservation group Oregon Wild, heard the helicopters take off and knew the sound spelled doom for OR4. “It was hard for a lot of people,” said Klavins, reached on Friday at his home near the town of Joseph in Wallowa County. “Even some of his detractors had a begrudging respect” for OR4, the fourth wolf to be fitted with a location-tracking radio collar in Oregon. He weighed at least 115 pounds, the largest known wolf in Oregon at the time of his death, and survived for 10 years, three years longer than most wolves in the wild.

OR4 and his progeny have been largely responsible for the gray wolf’s intrepid return to lands where the species was long ago hunted, poisoned, trapped, burned, and otherwise chased nearly to extinction.

Cattle farmers, who receive a subsidy from taxpayers to graze their animals on vast ranges of publicly-owned land where the wolves also dwell, worry about wolves killing their property. Hunters want first shot at the game, such as deer and elk, that wolves favor. But livestock depredations in Oregon are extremely rare, and have become scarcer even as the wolf population has increased. Meanwhile, ODFW’s data shows that Oregon’s wolves are having no effect on elk, deer, and wild sheep populations. Of course, those statistics are small consolation to the rancher who suffered the loss of property in March.

In early 2008, OR4 and his mate at the time, OR2, were among the first wolves to swim the Snake River, scale enormous mountains, and establish a foothold for wolves in game-rich Wallowa County. Since then, more than 110 Oregon wolves have spread from the remote northeast corner of the state, over the Cascades, and to near the California border. Many of these pioneering wolves were spawned by OR4.

Beginning with his first pack in 2009, OR4 fathered, provided for, and protected dozens of wolf pups that survived in the Oregon wild—and made their way all the way south to California, where OR7, known as the “lone wolf, trekked in 2012. Today, OR7 has his own pack in the California-Oregon border region. The alpha female of the Shasta pack—the first gray wolf pack to make California home since 1924—is the offspring of OR4.

That OR4 lasted this long is source of wonder to those who have followed his starring role in Oregon’s gray-wolf comeback story. In 2011, a brief cattle-killing spree by the Imnaha pack had him slated for execution. A suit by Oregon Wild and other conservation groups stayed the execution order and OR4 settled into a mostly incident-free life as Oregon’s biggest and baddest-ass wolf.

There is good reason to believe OR4 was cast out of his pack early this year, and his decision to move into livestock calving ground was borne of the need of an old, slowing, and dull-toothed male—no longer able to bring down elk—to fend for his hobbled mate, to whom he was endearingly loyal, and his yearling pups.

“He was an outlaw wolf with a heart of gold,” said Amaroq Weiss, the West Coast Wolf Coordinator for the Center for Biological Diversity. Weiss recalled a 2009 video of OR4 leading his Imnaha pack up a snowy mountainside as a defining image from the early days of Oregon’s wolf recovery. “He was definitely a father figure.”

The Shasta Pack that is part of OR’s legacy will soon be coming into its second litter. It is protected by the California Endangered Species Act. In Oregon, though, wolves were removed from the endangered species list in November, which allowed OR4’s pack to be shot to death Thursday. Activists have sued to re-list the animals.

The wolf management plan that provided the legal justification for the killing of OR4, Limpy, and their pups is up for review in Oregon this year. The state has determined that the wolf population met benchmarks that allow livestock producers more lethal options when dealing with depredating wolves. Klavins and others would like to make sure the updated plan calls for every non-lethal option to be exhausted before wolves are killed.

“What was done [Thursday] was sufficient for an agency that views wildlife as agents of damage and whose primary job is to protect private interests at taxpayer expense,” Klavins said. “But it’s not good enough for a public agency whose mission is to ‘protect and enhance Oregon’s fish and wildlife and their habitats for use and enjoyment by present and future generations,’ ” he continued, quoting from the agency’s official documents. “They need to do better. Oregonians deserve better.”

Wolf advocate Wally Sykes is one of the few to have encountered OR4 in the wild. “I was kind of initially prepared for something to happen, but the visual image of an old wolf being hunted down by a helicopter, with his hobbling mate by his side and his two freaked out pups along with him, is an ugly picture to carry in your head,” said. He said officials he spoke with were “not at all happy to have killed these wolves.” Sykes’ recording of OR4’s howl can be heard here.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/oregon-just-killed-family-wolves-181546732.html

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Nov. 12, 2009

In happier times! ODFW caught the ten member Imnaha wolf pack walking single file through the eastern Oregon woods with at least six pups!! Leading the pack is alpha female B-300.

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Posted in Oregon wolves, Wolf Wars

Photo: ODFW

Tags: OR4, OR39 (Limpy), ODFW, aerial gunning, shooting innocent wolves, OR7, Take Part, animal cruelty, Wolf wars, death of a Legend, Oregon Wild, B-300 (Sophie), Imnaha wolf pack,

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Oregon’s Bad Wolf Management Plan Coming Home To Roost (As Predicted)

Wolves Howling Tumblr Gif

November 1, 2015

 Oregon is ready to delist wolves.

Anyone who’s read the Oregon wolf “management plan” could see this coming a mile away. There was major push-back against “the plan”  in 2010 because the number of breeding pairs needed to reach delisting was and is ridiculously low. So here we are, five years later and Oregon’s woefully inadequate wolf “management plan” is ready to kick in.

Please attend the ODFW meeting in Salem, Oregon on November 9th to speak out against the plan and delisting.

“ODFW staff believe gray wolves have met the criteria to be delisted from the state Endangered Species Act (ESA) and will recommend this action to the Fish and Wildlife Commission at their Nov. 9th meeting in Salem.

The meeting begins at 8 a.m. at ODFW Headquarters, 4034 Fairview Industrial Drive SE, Salem. It is open to the public and public testimony will be accepted during the meeting. Consideration of wolf delisting is the only item on the agenda. Written comments will also be accepted until Friday Nov. 6 at 5 p.m. and can be sent to odfw.commission@state.or.us More information about the meeting is available at” http://www.dfw.state.or.us/agency/commission/minutes/15/11_november/index.asp

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Washington state has a far superior wolf “management plan”. 

To reclassify from state threatened to state sensitive status: 12 successful breeding pairs present for 3 consecutive years, with 4 successful breeding pairs in each of the three recovery regions.

To delist from state sensitive status: 15 successful breeding pairs present for 3 consecutive years, with 4 successful breeding pairs in each of the three recovery regions and 3 successful breeding pairs anywhere in the state.

In addition to the delisting objective of 15 successful breeding pairs distributed in the three geographic regions for 3 consecutive years, an alternative delisting objective is also established whereby the gray wolf will be considered for delisting when 18 successful breeding pairs are present, with 4 successful breeding pairs in the Eastern Washington region, 4 successful breeding pairs in the Northern Cascades region, 4 successful breeding pairs distributed in the Southern Cascades and Northwest Coast region, and 6 anywhere in the state.

http://wdfw.wa.gov/publications/00001/

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But Oregon only requires four breeding pairs for three consecutive years in Eastern Oregon  to “be considered for statewide delisting”.  In Western Oregon, the goal is also four breeding pairs. The plan is divided into three parts. Phase three states:

“Under Phase 3 a limited controlled hunt could be allowed to decrease chronic depredation or reduce pressure on wild ungulates if confirmed wolf predation leads to declines in localized herds.”

Even in a state as progressive as Oregon, wolves are not safe. They will eventually be subjected to a wolf hunt and probably much sooner than everyone thinks. This proposed delisting will open a wolf Pandora’s box that will never close.

But let’s be blunt, the ONLY reason wolf management plans exist is to placate ranchers and hunters. Wolves don’t need managing. What we’ve done, by bringing wolves back from the brink in the lower 48, is place them in a cage they can’t escape. Wild wolves are not free. As I type this wolves in Montana and Idaho are being hunted and trapped. And if the USFWS has their way, all wolves across the lower 48,  will lose their ESA protections.

Rick Bass put it most eloquently, when describing the untenable conditions we force wolves to live under:

MAY WE NEVER BE JUDGED BY ANYTHING SO HARSHLY OR HOLD TO AS STRICT A LIFE OR UNREMITTING OF BORDERS AS THE ONES WE TRY TO PLACE ON & AROUND WOLVES…Rick Bass

Wolves have been poached in almost every state they disperse to with the exception of California. Remember Echo, the little wolf who traveled hundreds of miles to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon, only to be shot by a trophy hunter, using the “coyote excuse“? This is one of the deadliest threats to dispersing wolves Those two words, give the shooter a perfect alibi. It’s “he said, he said”. Or “she said, she said”. The wolf is dead, it’s the shooter’s word that counts.The sad stories go on and on, we all know them. And of course, even though wolves are still “supposedly protected” by the ESA across the continental US the USFWS does virtually nothing to curb or stop poaching. Poaching investigations go nowhere,  and most poachers go unpunished. The “coyote excuse” is accepted again and again by the USFWS as gospel.  But we all know the real reason why there are few prosecutions of wolf poachers, the USFWS isn’t interested in wolves dispersing out of the Northern Rockies/Pacific Northwest or Great Lakes, to reclaim lost habitat. Wolves currently inhabit less than 5% of their former range. Yet does it come as a surprise that wolf dispersal has been stopped cold outside of the areas I mentioned?   The odds are stacked against them as they face the likes of Wildlife Services, poachers, hostile state governments, hunters and ranchers. Wolves are trapped by man-made boundaries they dare not cross. Boundaries that hold no meaning for them but ultimately contribute to their deaths.

Wolves are unique, sentient beings, incredibly smart wild dogs devoted to their families. Yet hunted wolf populations are subjected to a deadly game of annual Russian Roulette, where wolf mothers, fathers, puppies and pack mates are brutally killed in the name of “management”.

Once pack structure is disrupted, it’s very difficult to keep the family together, as the plight of the alpha male of the Lamar Canyon Pack (755m) demonstrates. After losing his mate, the iconic, 06 Female, to a hunter’s bullet in 2012, he’s still attempting to restore his pack, trying to connect with his FOURTH potential mate. We have Rick Lamplugh, the author of In The Temple of the Wolves: A Winter’s Immersion In Wild Yellowstone, for shining a light on wolf 755m’s sad story.

One Bullet Kills an Entire Pack

Apr 02, 2014 | Rick Lamplugh
Wolf 755M alpha male of the Lamar Canyon Pack_Rick Lamplugh
Wolf 755M (right) was the alpha male of the Lamar Canyon Pack seen here with 889F (left) the fourth wolf with whom he has tried to restart a pack after his mate was shot and killed outside Yellowstone Nat’l Park.
 The results of legal wolf hunt are presented to the public as palatable statistics. Officials tell us, for example, that in the 2012-2013 hunts outside Yellowstone National Park twelve park wolves were killed. Six were collared wolves that–when alive–provided valuable research data. One of those collared wolves was the famous alpha female of the Lamar Canyon pack, dubbed “06” by wolf watchers.

Such statistics don’t begin to tell the whole story of the impact of one bullet on the delicate social structure of a pack, an arrangement much like that of an extended human family.

http://www.oregonwild.org/about/blog/one-bullet-kills-entire-pack

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Can you imagine, in human terms, someone randomly killing your mother, father, or children and still remaining a whole, functional family? The answer is obviously no. But because wolves are at the mercy of fish and game agencies who manage wildlife for hunters, the wolf’s family structure and what happens to those bonds is never considered. A wolf, is a wolf is a wolf as far as they’re concerned. Knock one down and they’ll just make more. How primitive, how insensitive, how backward. And that is what the wolves in Oregon are facing and what Montana and Idaho wolves are experiencing. And what the wolves in the Great Lakes were suffering until a federal judge placed them back on the Endangered Species List in December 2014. Don’t expect them to remain protected if the Obama USFWS has their wayy.

To treat wolves as disposable, never considering their family bonds and tight social order, is a grave injustice. BUT as long as they are “managed” under the iron fist of fish and game agencies, who DO NOT represent their interests, they will remain prisoners in their ancestral home.

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ODFW Believes Gray Wolf Should Be Delisted

Salem, Ore.— ODFW staff believe gray wolves have met the criteria to be delisted from the state Endangered Species Act (ESA) and will recommend this action to the Fish and Wildlife Commission at their Nov. 9th meeting in Salem.

The meeting begins at 8 a.m. at ODFW Headquarters, 4034 Fairview Industrial Drive SE, Salem. It is open to the public and public testimony will be accepted during the meeting. Consideration of wolf delisting is the only item on the agenda. Written comments will also be accepted until Friday Nov. 6 at 5 p.m. and can be sent to odfw.commission@state.or.us More information about the meeting is available at http://www.dfw.state.or.us/agency/commission/minutes/15/11_november/index.asp

Wolf management in Oregon is guided by the Wolf Plan, which was originally crafted in 2005 by a broad group of stakeholders balancing competing interests. The Plan called for initiating a process to consider delisting wolves from the state ESA when eastern Oregon had a population of four breeding pairs of wolves for three consecutive years, an objective met in January 2015.

State ESA law gives the Fish and Wildlife Commission authority to list and remove species from the Endangered Species List.

http://www.mycentraloregon.com/2015/10/29/odfw-believes-gray-wolf-should-be-delisted/

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Eastern Oregon Wolves Could Be Facing Delisting In 2015

OR11_odfw

OPB | Sept. 16, 2014 2:21 p.m. | Portland

Gray wolf populations are on the rise in Oregon, but that may not necessarily be good news for the animals.

The Statesman Journal reports  that the state may have enough potential wolf couples in 2015 for the minimum requirements to delist the animal.

“We were told in the beginning that when wolves first came to the county, we were waiting for that day,” said Todd Nash, wolf committee chairman for the Oregon Cattleman Association, in an interview with the newspaper.

According to Oregon’s Endangered Species Act, the state Department of Fish and Wildlife must verify four breeding pairs in eastern Oregon for three consecutive years.

In 2012, there were six pairs and last year the organization located four pairs. It’s predicted that 2014’s count won’t be complete until early next year, but early reports show more than four couples.

By removing wolves from the state’s endangered species list, ranchers would be permitted to use lethal force to defend their animals in more situations.

According to ODFW , shooting a wolf is considered a misdemeanor, which carries a maximum penalty of $6,250 fine and a year in jail.

https://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com/?p=27382

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Help Change Oregon’s Wolf Management Plan

June 21, 2010

Oregon Yearling Wolf Killed By Wildlife Services 2009

Guest Post by Katie, Oregon resident and wolf advocate.

June 21, 2010

The Oregon Wolf Management Plan is currently under a 5-year review and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife is accepting comments from the public until June 30th. However, before I tell you about the plan and its obstacles, here is a brief history of the Oregon wolves.

In Oregon, the last gray wolf was eradicated from the state by the 1940s. It was almost 60 years before another one was seen. The first wolf to migrate to the state in 1999 was recaptured and sent back to Idaho. In 2000, two more gray wolves made the journey, but sadly they were both killed; one by a car and one by bullet. The fact that wolves were returning was undeniable, so the state decided they needed a plan. The ODFW sat down with wolf advocates and livestock owners to decide what should be done. Though the livestock owners may have gotten more say in the plan, wolf advocates seemed glad to simply be getting wolves back in the state. The result was a wolf management plan that everyone agreed on. Oregon became one of the first states to willingly open the doors for gray wolves to return.

In 2008, a female Idaho wolf was located in Oregon using the signals from her radio collar. The gray wolf was identified as “B-300”. To bring more attention to wolf recovery in Oregon, the members of a local environmental group, called Oregon Wild, nicknamed the wolf “Sophie”. Eventually finding a mate, Sophie soon became the alpha female of the largest pack in Oregon with 10 wolves total; the Imnaha Pack. Another pack of four wolves was also discovered in 2008. Together, the two packs made up Oregon’s known gray wolf population of 14 individuals.

The plan seemed perfect. Wolves were returning and things seemed to be going well. However, in 2009, two yearling wolves were convicted of killing 29 domestic animals from five different incidents. When non-lethal techniques failed, Wildlife Services was sent in and killed both wolves. Personally, I don’t blame the wolves, they were just pups. Being too young to hunt elk, it was either that or starve. They had no known pack and just seemed to have traveled into Oregon from Idaho on their own. It is possible that their family was killed by a rival pack, but I believe it is more likely that they were killed for “management” purposes.

Now, in 2010, history seems to be repeating itself as two more wolves are being targeted by WS. With only 14 known wolves in the entire state, killing two individuals would be a huge loss. ODFW has also issued seven kill permits to local ranchers, which could spell disaster for such a fragile population.

CURRENT PLAN

Oregon current Wolf Management Plan included three phases for population recovery:

PHASE ONE

 “Wolves may be considered for statewide delisting once the population reaches four breeding pairs for three consecutive years in eastern Oregon…. The plan calls for managing wolves in western Oregon as if the species remains listed until the western Oregon wolf population reaches four breeding pairs.”

This means when there are four packs in eastern Oregon and four in western Oregon, wolves will be stripped of ESA protection statewide.

The average gray wolf pack size is about 8 wolves. If packs in Oregon follow the norm, then roughly 64 wolves will be present when they are delisted. A recent study suggests Oregon could support up to 2200 wolves and still maintain a healthy ecosystem. I don’t know about you, but 64 wolves doesn’t sound like recovered to me.

PHASE TWO:

 “Once the wolf is delisted, more options are available to address wolf-livestock conflict. While there are five to seven breeding pairs, landowners may kill a wolf involved in chronic depredation with a permit. Five to seven breeding pairs is considered the management population objective, or Phase 2.”

Five to seven breeding pairs? Oregon currently has two breeding pairs and seven landowners have been given permits to kill wolves. Again, five to seven breeding pairs is 40-56 wolves if they are the average pack size.

PHASE THREE

“Under Phase 3 a limited controlled hunt could be allowed to decrease chronic depredation or reduce pressure on wild ungulates if confirmed wolf predation leads to declines in localized herds.”

Sound familiar? Idaho and Montana initiated hunts mere months after wolves were delisted. The difference is there were 1500 wolves in Montana and Idaho when the first hunts began. In Oregon the hunt could start with less than 100.

To read the full Oregon Wolf Management Plan, go to http://www.dfw.state.or.us/Wolves/docs/wolf_plan.pdf

As you can see, the Oregon Wolf Management Plan is weak and gives livestock owners plenty of tools to deal with wolf depredation. However, the Oregon Cattle Association wants more power. Since the plan is under a 5-year review, OCA is suggesting changes to the plan that will suit the cattle industry, not wolves.

OCA’S TESTIMONY

1. Delisting rules (combine the whole state and begin delisting when there are 4 breeding pairs statewide)”

Four breeding pairs would be approximately 32 wolves. Even if each pack was as big as Sophie’s that would still only be 40 wolves, which is definitely not recovered.

2. “Relocation, location, and translocation eliminated”

The current management plan allows for “problem” wolves to be relocated to the closest wilderness area. The closest wilderness area is usually where the wolf came from before it found the livestock. This part of the plan needs to be strengthened, not weakened.

3. Ownership of lands ,IE; state lands is the only lands the Oregon ESA has authority on”

They are asking to change Oregon’s ESA. Not only would this be bad for wolves, but it would also allow anyone to shoot any endangered animal if it was on their property. Remember, these are changes they want now, not when the gray wolf population is 60+, but when there are only 14 wolves in Oregon.

To see the full testimony from the Oregon Cattle Association, go to: http://www.oregonwild.org/fish_wildlife/bringing_wolves_back/OCA_Testimony.pdf

To see the testimony from Oregon Wild, a local environmental group, go to: http://www.oregonwild.org/fish_wildlife/bringing_wolves_back/oregon-wild-wolf-plan-review-testimony-3-12.10/

ODFW is currently accepting comments from the public about changes they should make to the plan. ODFW has not said what they are thinking of changing but the first draft is scheduled to be done some time in August. The deadline to comment is June 30th.

Email your comments to ODFW.Comments@state.or.us

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Talking Points:

 1. Make sure to let them know you want the wolf plan STRENGTHENED, not weakened. Tell them eight breeding pairs statewide are NOT enough. Mention the study that states Oregon could support 2200 gray wolves on its landscape.

 2. Wildlife officials need more options to relocate wolves. Suggest national or state parks, or larger wilderness areas.

 3. Ranchers need to do everything possible to protect their livestock before any action against wolves is even considered. Suggest proper fencing, fladery, radio collar activated sounds, guardian animals, lambing and calving sheds, frequent patrols of pastures, placing livestock in barns at night, and tracking packs to avoid placing cattle in areas where wolves are known to be.

4. Tell them wolves are more valuable alive than dead, because they are. Support this idea by stating Yellowstone Park makes $7-10 million annually from just wolves (The GYA brings in $35 million wolf generated dollars). Explain the positive impacts wolves have on the environment, like increasing beaver populations (beavers are Oregon’s state animal). Wolves keep ungulates moving, which prevents them from over-browsing vital beaver and songbird habitat. Wolves keep ungulate herds healthy by culling the weak, sick and old.

5. Tell them to increase the funding of the wolf plan. Currently the wolf plan is very underfunded and only has a few members on its management team.

6. If you don’t live in Oregon, you can choose to boycott the state if they weaken the management plan. Tell them you will not buy anything from Oregon or visit the state unless the plan is strengthened.

7.  Think of the Imnaha wolf pack and how much they need our help. Their exigence as a pack is in danger. How sad it would be to lose the only breeding pair of wolves in Oregon.

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Don’t forget to email your comments to ODFW and voice your opinion about the Oregon Wolf Management Plan. Comments@state.or.us

Sources Cited:

http://www.oregonwild.org

http://www.predatorfriendly.org/index.html  

http://www.dfw.state.or.us/Wolves/docs/wolf_plan.pdf  

http://www.oregonwild.org/fish_wildlife/bringing_wolves_back/OCA_Testimony.pdf  

http://www.yellowstonepark.com/MoreToKnow/ShowNewsDetails.aspx?newsid=132 

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Top Wolf Gif: Tumblr

Middle Photo: ODFW

Middle Photo: Courtesy Rick Lamplugh

Bottom Photo: ODFW

Posted in: Oregon wolves, Ranching and Hunting, Wolf Wars

Tags: Oregon, bad wolf management plan, delisting, ODFW, ranchers, poachers, wolf dispersal

It’s Official: Wolves Are Protected In California!

OR7

OR7  – dual citizen of California and Oregon (:

October 9, 2014

Even though, officially, there are no known gray wolves in California, the state extended endangered species protection to canis lupus today. This is critically important, since the USFWS plans to rubber stamp a national wolf delisting plan, removing all federal protections for wolves in the lower 48. Without state protections, wolves across the country will face tremendous risk.

Gray wolves are subjected to persecution in Montana, Idaho, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan, even Washington and Oregon, where they remain listed. Wyoming wolves, until recently, could be shot on sight in 80% of the state. Last week, US District Judge Amy Berman Jackson,  placed Wyoming wolves  back on the Endangered Species List. Her ruling was the result of a lawsuit challenging the state’s faulty “wolf management” plan, specifically the predator zone, where wolves could be killed by any means, 365 days of the year, seven days a week. Mexican gray wolves face an uphill battle on a daily basis, as their tiny, inbred numbers struggle to survive, surrounded by thousands of cattle in the Blue Range Wolf Recovery area and hostile ranchers.

Now that wolves are protected in California they can safely disperse from other states, as the iconic Oregon wolf OR7 did ( so named because he was the seventh wolf to be collared in Oregon.) OR7 made history when he set paws on California soil in December 2011, the first wolf to officially do so since the 1920’s, when canis lupus was eradicated from the Golden State, almost ninety years ago.

OR7 dispersed from the Imnahas, his natal pack in Eastern Oregon. OR7’s mother is famous in her own right. Swimming the Snake River from Idaho into Oregon in 2008, B-300 and her mate became Oregon’s first breeding pair in almost sixty years. Her son went on to become even more famous and provided the impetus for the protection of gray wolves in California.

OR7’s Mother B-300 (Sophie) making her way into NE Oregon 2008

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ODFW caught the ten member Imnaha wolf pack walking single file through the eastern Oregon woods with at least six pups!! Leading the pack is alpha female B-300. OR7 was born in April  2009, so he’s somewhere in this video. Where’s Waldo? 

OR7 logged thousands of miles on his tracking collar, as he searched for a mate. His arrival in California set off an international sensation. OR7, also known as Journey, moved back and forth between California and Oregon, before finding a mate and settling down in Oregon, now with pups in tow.  If it wasn’t for this amazing wolf it’s unlikely wolves would now be protected in California. It was OR7’s presence in a state long devoid of two of its top predators, the grizzly bear and wolf, that sparked the conversation leading to California’s  decision to right the wrong of almost a century ago. Thank you California. Now lets work on returning your state animal, the grizzly bear, to its native home.

OR7 Pup

One of OR7’s Pups ( ODFW 2014)

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California Fish and Game Commission ratifies gray wolf findings

The California Fish and Game Commission held a meeting in Mount Shasta on Wednesday, drawing a crowd for its decision to ratify findings supporting the listing of the gray wolf as an endangered species in California.

By David Smith
@SDNDavidSmith
Posted Oct. 9, 2014 @ 9:57 am

http://www.siskiyoudaily.com/article/20141009/NEWS/141009745/-1/news

Alpha male Imnaha pack

Alpha male Imnaha Pack 2011

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Top Photo: Courtesy Wiki

Middle Photo: Courtesy ODFW

Bottom Photo: Courtesy ODFW

Top Video: Courtesy YouTube ORWild

Bottom Video: Courtesy YouTube ODFW

Posted in: Wolf Wars, California wolves

Tags: California wolves, Oregon wolves, OR7, B-300, Imnaha pack, California Fish and Wildlife, California lists gray wolves, ODFW

Oregon Wolf Pup Calls To It’s Pack….

August 8, 2014

I love posting this video,  I do it almost every year.

Is there a more haunting, ethereal sound in nature than the howl of the wolf?  This sweet pup calls to its pack and they howl back!!

Remote camera photo from July 21, 2013, documenting three pups in the newly formed Mt Emily pack. Photo courtesy of ODFW

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Posted in: gray wolf pups, biodiversity, Oregon wolves

Video: Courtesy YouTube ODFW

Photo: Courtesy ODFW

Tags: Snake River Wolf Pack, ODFW, wolf pup, howling wolves, Oregon

Oregon Wolf Pup Calls To It’s Pack….

January 13, 2013

Is there a more haunting, ethereal sound in nature than the howl of the wolf?  This sweet pup calls to its pack and they howl back!!

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Posted in: gray wolf pups, biodiversity

Video: Courtesy YouTube ODFW

Tags: Snake River Wolf Pack, ODFW, wolf pup, howling wolves, Oregon

Checking In…

ODFW yearling wolf killed by Wildlife Sevices

I’m still here, I have a few personal issues to deal with but I’ll be back.  Please hold down the fort while I’m gone. Feel free to read through the archives, it will give you a very clear picture of what wolves have been through since the first delisting in 2009.

Get your thinking caps on, we’re going to need all the brainpower we can muster to defeat this evil.

We will not allow our wolves, America’s wolves, to be used as target practice for the pleasure of a few sickos at the expense of the many.

Howl if you agree!!

For the wolves, For the wild ones,

Nabeki

Published in: on May 19, 2013 at 10:34 pm  Comments (17)  
Tags: , ,

The Wolf That Could, OR7 Crosses Into California and Walks Into History..

The Imnaha Pack, OR7’s Parents  (Alpha Female”Sophie” far left, Alpha Male OR4, black wolf , head  lowered) (ODFW)

OR7, the young, dispersing Oregon wolf, who has captured the world’s attention with his epic journey, crossed into California from Oregon Wednesday night, making him the first wolf to officially set a paw in California since 1924. It was in his  genes, In 2008, OR7’s  mother, wolf  B-300, nicknamed “Sophie”,  dispersed from Idaho into Oregon by swimming the Snake River to her new home in the “Beaver State”.

Here she is caught on camera scampering along in the snow after her 08 arrival, quite the traveler,  just like her famous son.

“A female gray wolf from Idaho’s Timberline Pack has been positively located in Oregon”  “The wolf, a two to three-year-old female identified as B-300”. “Experts have long predicted that wolves from the expanding Idaho population would continue to cross the Snake River and enter Oregon. “

Once in Oregon “Sophie” found a mate, OR4 and became the alpha female of the Imnaha Pack, the first wolf pack to inhabit Oregon in over sixty years.  It’s been a rough go for the Imnaha’s,  beleaguered for the last several years, under constant death threats  because of a handful of livestock depredations blamed on the pack (19 in two years).  Oregon ranchers lost 51,200 cows  (NASS) to non-predation in 2010 but the focus is always on negligible  losses to wolves. The livestock industry gets lots of mileage grandstanding about wolves. I guess they figure if they repeat something often enough people will believe it. Nobody is going out of business over 19 cows.

“Rob Klavins of Oregon Wild said that the number of livestock killed by gray wolves is miniscule compared with the numbers that die being born, in severe weather or from disease. Ranchers also lose cows to thieves. 

“Wolves are not a threat to the livestock industry,” Klavins said, emphasizing the need for the state to balance the needs of ranchers with conservation.” 

Even with the shadow hanging over his parent’s heads nothing can diminish OR7’s accomplishment, he is his mother’s son, following in her illustrious footsteps.

Wolves are consummate wanderers, they can travel 25 miles a day without breaking a sweat. They have runner’s bodies with their long legs, deep chests, slim bodies and snowshoe feet. Wolves are the marathoners of the animal kingdom and OR-7 has not disappointed.

His travels:

“Tracking OR7’s Journey From His Natal Pack, Before He Crossed Into California Wednesday night”(ODFW)

Just two years old,  he’s doing what wolves have done for thousands of years, search for a mate to establish his own pack and claim territory. To add to his mystery, no recent pictures of him exist.

Wearing a GPS collar, OR7’s wanderings have been closely tracked by biologists. He migrated 730 miles across Oregon over two months beginning last September. Over the past month, he’s been in the Siskiyou National Forest, northeast of Medford. This week, he wandered south of the Oregon town of Keno, just 10 miles from the California border.

“He’s doing what young males typically do — they outgrow their pack and go out to find their own mate, to try to make a pack,” said fish and game spokeswoman Jordan Traverso.

He’s not likely to find a mate  in California, unless he’s aware of something we aren’t. There could be uncollared wolves in California we know nothing about.  Or he might be traveling with a female companion.  He’s remained elusive as only wolves can, so no one is quite sure what he’s up to. More then likely he’ll wander around for awhile and return to Oregon or travel into Nevada,  or he could head further south, it’s anyone’s guess.

I worry for his safety, so many eyes are on him and not just friendly ones. OR7 is FEDERALLY PROTECTED by the Endangered Species Act, it’s a crime to harm him.

Ranchers are already beating the drums about his presence.  But wolves really have little impact on livestock.

Steve Pedery, Oregon Wild’s conservation director, sees the wolf divide as a culture clash.

“Folks are really fighting wolf recovery … because they perceive it as the big bad federal government or the terrible people in the Willamette Valley in Oregon bringing back an animal that their grandparents wiped out for good cause,” he said. “It’s really more of a debate over values than it is about wolves and what they actually do.”

On a lighter note. OR7 was to have a new name.

“…The conservation group Oregon Wild, deciding that OR7 needed a more endearing name, launched a contest that drew several hundred suggestions from children as far away as Nigeria and Taiwan. The winner will be announced after New Year’s Day from the five finalists: Arthur, Max, Journey, Lupin and Takota.

Since he’s now a California wolf has Oregon lost the right to name him? We’ll see. He may be taking a holiday stroll in the Golden State and be back in Oregon before the New Year.

Stay safe OR7, the eyes of the world are upon you.

Britain’s Daily Mail recently said OR-7 “captured the heart of the American public” with his incredible zigzag journey through the state that began Sept. 10 in Wallowa County. A Google search shows he’s on more than 300 websites, and his story has been picked up in Finland, Austria, Taiwan, Sweden, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom and Argentina. 

I hope this will bring the much-needed publicity wolves are due.  His wolf kin in Idaho and Montana and being slaughtered in brutal wolf hunts, 316 are dead as of 12/29/2011. The Idaho hunt stretches all the way into June 2012, in the Lolo and Selway zones. Ten long months!!

This young wolves’ journey has boosted the  spirits of weary advocates, grateful  for any good wolf news. With his light shining so bright, it’s hard not to see the greatness of wolves!

“Alpha Female, B-300 Imnaha Pack (OR7’s mother) and a Two Year Old Male” (ODFW)

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Lone wolf crosses into California from Oregon

The young animal is the first wolf known to be at large in California since 1924. Wildlife authorities in both states have been monitoring the wolf since it set out from the Crater Lake area in September.

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-wolf-california-20111230,0,6653668.story?track=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+latimes%2Fnews%2Flocal+%28L.A.+Times+-+California+%7C+Local+News%29

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Wolf’s journey marks strides for its species

By Lisa M. Krieger

lkrieger@mercurynews.com

 Posted: 12/29/2011 09:23:35 PM PST

http://www.mercurynews.com/rss/ci_19643820?source=rss

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OR-7 ,Oregon’s wandering wolf ,captures imagination of worldwide audience

Published: Sunday, December 11, 2011, 10:20 PM     Updated: Monday, December 12, 2011, 12:06 AM
 By Richard Cockle, The Oregonian 

http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2011/12/or-7_–_oregons_wandering_wolf.html

“OR-11, A Male Pup (born Spring 2011) from Oregon’s Walla Walla Pack” (ODFW)

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Photos: Courtesy ODFW

Posted in:  Oregon wolves, California wolves,  gray wolf

Tags: OR7, dispersing wolf, Oregon, California, rock star wolf, wolves elusive, Imnaha Pack, ODFW, biodiversity

Oregon’s Imnaha Pack Safe….For Now

Imnaha Pack alpha male (ODFW)

While 55 wolves have been killed in the ongoing  Montana and Idaho hunt/slaughter,  Oregon’s Imnaha Pack alpha male and yearling are safe tonight, after the Oregon Court of Appeals granted a temporary stay of the” kill order”  hanging over the two wolves heads!

Three environmental groups filed a lawsuit on October 5th to halt the killing of the two wolves and the judges listened.  The killing of the alpha male and the younger wolf would likely have been the nail in the coffin for the Imnaha pack, leaving the alpha female, B-300 and her six month old pup to fend for themselves.

Although the injunction is temporary we call on Governor Kitzhaber to end the “witch hunt” permanently and stop the harassment of this wolf pack.

As I stated in an earlier post, Oregon ranchers lost 51,200 cattle to non-predation in 2010, so the continual coverage of miniscule wolf depredations looks like persecution, driven by the livestock industry and is casting a pall over Oregon’s reputation as a moderate and progressive state.

Court orders state to halt hunt for two wolves of Imnaha pack in NE Oregon

Published: Wednesday, October 05, 2011, 9:07 PM     Updated: Wednesday, October 05, 2011, 9:10 PM

JOSEPH — As state biologists combed northeastern Oregon’s rugged mountains Wednesday to kill two gray wolves in the Imnaha pack, conservation groups challenged the kill order in court and called on Gov. John Kitzhaber to intercede.

Late in the day, the Oregon Court of Appeals granted their request to temporarily halt the hunt, The Associated Press reported.

Cascadia Wildlands, the Center for Biological Diversity and Oregon Wild contend that efforts by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to remove the pack’s alpha male and a younger wolf would leave only a female wolf and one pup born this year to fend for themselves this winter.

“They are proposing to take out the leader of the pack, which will, in my best estimate, render the pack unviable,” said Josh Laughlin, spokesman for the Eugene-based Cascadia Wildlands. “Oregonians are not going to stand for that.”

Read More: http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/index.ssf/2011/10/conservation_groups_win_tempor.html

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Oregon’s Governor Kitzhaber (503-378-4582) 

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Photo: Courtesy ODFW

Posted in: Wolf Wars, Oregon Wolves, Howling for Justice

Tags: Oregon Court of Appeals, Imnaha alpha male, ODFW,  “kill order” stayed, Oregon Wild, Cascadia Wildlands, Center for Biological Diversity

51,200 Dead Oregon Cows Not Killed By Wolves! Where’s The Media?

Slated to die. Alpha Male Imnaha Pack 2009
September 28, 2011
Ok, 51,200 cows died in Oregon in 2010 from non-predation causes. (NASS 2010) This should be front page news, right? When wolves are involved in miniscule livestock losses they make the front pages of local media. So what about those 51,200 cows that weren’t killed by wolves?
Talk about making a mountain out of a mole-hill or big fish stories, this is the mother of all big fish stories.

ODFW is planning on killing the alpha male (pictured above) and another wolf from the Imnaha Pack, for livestock losses so small, they barely register statistically.  Yet incredibly large numbers of cows drop dead in Oregon every year and all we hear are “crickets”.

So here we are, two wolves facing a death sentence. Apparently they are being tracked right  now.

A department hunter is looking first for a member of the pack not collared with a radio transmitter, Morgan said. Then he will go after the alpha male, which goes by the number OR4 and sired the first pups in Oregon since wolves began moving back into the state from Idaho in the 1990s.

The alpha female and her pup of the year will be left to face the winter alone, with no help to bring down prey.

Here is B-300 better known as  “Sophie”, crossing  into Oregon in 2008.  She would later become the alpha female of  the Imnaha Pack.  Look at her scampering along, beautiful and healthy. Little did she know what she was getting into.

In protest of  ODFW’s egregious intention to slaughter two perfectly healthy Imnaha wolves, leaving just the alpha female and her pup of the year, two Portland Animal Defense League protesters, Stephanie Taylor and Justin Kay, chained themselves to the ODFW headquarter doors with bike locks.

Two arrested during protest against wolf killings

Posted: Sep 27, 2011 6:31 PM MDTUpdated: Sep 27, 2011 7:31 PM MDT

By Brian MacMillan

SALEM, OR (KPTV) –

For nearly an hour and a half Tuesday morning, protestors took over the front entrance of the Department of Fish and Wildlife in Salem.

“We’ve tried everything from phone calls to the governor, phone calls here, letter writing, protests.  Finally today, it ended with an act of civil disobedience,” said Tim Hitchins, with the Portland Animal Defense League.

Read More: http://www.kptv.com/story/15563955/two-arrested-during-wolf-killing-protest

The sad news is this is probably the end of the Imnaha Pack.

“ODFW has been under really intense pressure from the cattlemen,” Pedery said from Portland, Ore. “This is really a kill order on the pack. It is very unlikely the mother and her pup will survive the winter unless they feed on gut piles (left by deer and elk hunters), which puts them at risk of poachers, or feed on livestock. They really have little hope of bringing down a deer or elk by themselves.”

Oregon had 1,300,000 cattle at the beginning of 2011. Wolves apparently were responsible for 14 cow losses in 1.5 years. But thousands and thousands of cows were keeling over in Oregon from all manner of things, not wolf related.

Digestive problems

Respiratory problems

Metabolic problems

Mastitis

Lameness/injury

Other diseases

Weather related

Calving problems

Poisoning

Theft

(NASS 2010)

Why aren’t ranchers  squawking about this? Those losses COULD affect their “bottom line”,  not 14 supposed wolf depredations.

Isn’t it time to call this situation what it is. If if looks like a duck, quacks like a duck then it’s a duck. Plain and simple intolerance of wolves is ruling the day in eastern Oregon.  Clearly ranchers don’t want them there and that’s what’s driving this train.  The wishes of Oregon’s wildlife advocates and others, who would enjoy seeing wild wolves, apparently don’t count. The scapegoating and hysteria that plague the other wolf states has apparently taken hold in Oregon.  Shame. This has completely altered my view of the state.

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Wolf kill order could spell end of Oregon pack

http://m.spokesman.com/stories/2011/sep/27/wolf-kill-order-could-spell-end-of-oregon-pack/

Please continue to call  Oregon’s Governor Kitzhaber (503-378-4582) to protest the kill order on the two Imnaha wolves. Ask why wolves are being treated like criminals, collared, tracked continually, when obviously these losses are ridiculously miniscule. 

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Videos: Courtesy YouTube
Photo: Courtesy ODFW
Posted in: Wolf Wars, Oregon wolves, Howling For Justice
Tags: wolf scapegoating, Imnaha pack, kill order,  Oregon wolves, ODFW, NASS

TAKE ACTION: More Oregon’s Imnaha Wolves Slated To Die

Alpha Male (father) Imnaha Pack  (Ear tagged and collared May 2011)

FROM: NE OREGON ECOSYSTEMS

More wolves to be killed, and extermination of the entire Imnaha pack is on the table.

ODFW announced yesterday that more Imnaha wolves may be killed, and Oregon conservationists share growing alarm that the entire pack may be exterminated. ODFW Regional Manager Craig Ely implied last month in a conversation with NE Oregon Ecosystems that this option might be on the table, and information from sources close to the ODFW have reinforced this conviction. As it is, the pack has been reduced from 16 members to 8 or less, and 3 wolves have been killed by ODFW this year. One has dispersed to Washington, one collared wolf has disappeared, the whereabouts of some others are unknown. The Imnaha pack is in real trouble…

The ODFW is under crushing pressure from Oregon cattlemen to kill wolves, and unless wolf supporters make their opinions known soon, this pack, Oregon’s first and biggest, its best chance of wolf recovery, will be killed. The opinions carrying the greatest weight will be those from NE Oregon residents. Our legislators, the governor, the ODFW, and the press need to hear from us, not just from the Oregon Cattlemen’s Assoc. and their friends.

Some points to consider:

The Imnaha pack represents half of Oregon’s wolves and the best chance for wolves to disperse to safer habitat in Central and Western Oregon, where livestock conflict is less likely.

Oregon wolves are protected by the Oregon Endangered Species Act. The Oregon Wolf Plan, implemented in 2005 and revised in 2010, requires wolves to be managed for recovery until their numbers allow them to be delisted. Treating every depredation as a crisis to be solved by lethal removals is not a satisfactory management plan for recovering a population. Killing wolves should be only a last resort.

There will always be stock losses from wolves, just as there are from coyote, bear, dog, cougar, eagle,and others. The OWP is not designed to eliminate wolf depredation, any more than state policy is to eliminate losses from any other predator. Predators are part of the livestock business in the West, where huge tracts of public land rightfully provide a home for wildlife, and from which the ranchers benefit by grazing allotments. Despite the presence of the Imnaha pack, no rancher has gone out of business or is in danger of doing so from wolves.

Confirmed wolf depredations are compensated at full market value and probables reimbursed at half market value by Defenders of Wildlife. Vet bills for confirmed wolf-caused injuries are fully compensated. A compensation bill is under consideration by the state legislature.

“The state Endangered Species Act prohibits the killing of listed species with very limited exceptions,” points out Jennifer Schwartz of Hells Canyon Preservation Council, “If ODFW is going to lawfully operate within that narrow window of exceptions, it must be able to show that lethally removing wolves in response to conflicts with livestock is somehow necessary to further their conservation in Oregon. With so few wolves in the state, we are very much unconvinced that we need to kill more wolves in order to promote their recovery.”

After a strong start last year, wolf tourism is just starting to take off this season, with eco-tours scheduled for this summer and private operators planning for 2012. Tourists are planning trips specifically to be in wolf country and Wallowa County will benefit. Obviously the slaughter of the county’s most famous and accessible pack will bring this to a halt, and may well give the county a bad odor to those planning a visit to view wildlife.

Oregon Wild, in a statement on Monday, listed these four ODFW shortcomings:

Violating the wolf plan by baiting members of the Imnaha Pack back to the site of reported depredations leading to more losses that may in turn be used to justify lethal control.

Failure to adequately document and publicly share information on claimed non-lethal preventative measures.

Issuing 24 landowner kill permits without adequately documenting and publicly sharing information demonstrating those permits were issued in compliance with the wolf plan.

Treating every conflict between wolves and the livestock industry as a crisis by devoting nearly all of the agency’s wolf-related time and resources on a small fraction of the duties prescribed by the plan at the expense of research, education, and conservation.

A note on incremental lethal removal:

The management policy being applied this spring by ODFW is called incremental removal and is used when stock predation becomes chronic. It should only be employed after all non-lethal tools have been used. It’s intended to spare the pack while removing the depredating wolves. In the case of the Imnaha pack, it may be a valid policy, but it’s not clear that all the stockmen suffering losses have in fact used all the non-lethal methods, especially removing dead calves from pastures. Dead animals left lying around draw predators, and scavenged carcasses can be presented as wolf kills.

The ODFW is following a protocol designed to save the Imnaha pack, but the pack may also be drawn to prey on cattle by carcasses left on the range.

Please contact the following to express your respectful opinion about lethal removal of the Imnaha pack.

Governor John Kitzhaber: gov.kitzhaber@state.or.us – 503-378-4582.

CC the following:

ODFW Director Roy Elicker: roy.elicker@state.or.us – 503-947-6044.

ODFW Commissioners: odfw.commission@state.or.us (Individual Commissioners here).

Please adapt your letter as a Letter to the Editor (300 word max) and send to

The Oregonian: letters@oregonian.com and post to http://www.oregonlive.com/opinion/

The Chieftain: editor@wallowa.com

The La Grande Observer: tkramer@lagrandeobserver.com

The Baker City Herald: kborgen@bakercityherald.com

Thank you all,

NE Oregon Ecosystems

Imnaha Alpha male (father) August 2009

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Photos : Courtesy ODFW

Posted in: Wolf Wars, Oregon wolves

Tags:  ODFW, Imnaha Pack, Justice for wolves, Wallowa Country Oregon,  Pro-active animal husbandry, non-lethal tools, Oregon Cattlemen’s Association

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