Gray wolf hunting and killings in response to livestock attacks have pushed the number of dead wolves to a record of more than 500 this year in the Northern Rockies — just months after their removal from the endangered species list.
Officials said it's too early to know if the overall population will suffer. It will be months before they can gauge if wolf hunts in Montana and Idaho are curbing the predators' hunger for livestock.
The regional wolf count was 1,650 at the beginning of the year. Since September, hunters in Montana and Idaho have claimed at least 203 of the animals, with Idaho's hunting season slated to continue through March. Almost 300 more have been killed by government wildlife agents, ranchers defending their livestock, poachers and natural causes.
That figure includes deaths in Wyoming, where hunting remains banned.
In another article on the subject, a quote from Montana's lead gray wolf biologist regarding the recent authorization to kill up to 22 wolves.
"We're looking at learned behavior," said Carolyn Sime,...
Earlier Ms. Sime called it an unusual behavior. It is not learned or unusual. It is manipulated behavior forced onto the species by "wolf management" designed by politics. Policies created by those who admittedly don't know what the outcome or consequences will be.