For Cascades wolves, it's premature to remove protections
Jun 13, 2013
Conservation Northwest urges continued protection for Washington's Cascades wolves and their recognition as a distinct population. This approach would allow all the aspects of the Washington Gray Wolf Conservation and Management Plan to be fully implemented, while allowing for higher federal poaching fines and greater accountability to recovery goals.
One of the Wenatchee Pack's two known members. The recovery status of Cascades packs is still fragile. Photo © Craig Monette
Conservation Northwest has called on the US Fish and Wildlife Service to recognize Washington's Cascades wolves as a distinct population and continue to offer them protection as a threatened species.
This approach would allow all the aspects of the Washington Gray Wolf Conservation and Management Plan to be fully implemented, while allowing for higher federal poaching fines and greater accountability to recovery goals.
The US Fish and Wildlife Service plans to remove Endangered Species Act protection for gray wolves within the year, a blow to Washington's recovering wolves. Conservation Northwest supports protecting wolves under the Endangered Species Act in the coterminous US until they have fully recovered - especially vulnerable packs such as those returning to Washington’s Cascade Mountains.
Read our press release
Wolves west of the Rockies are relatively scarce and at a fragile stage. Conservation Northwest believes that loss of protection puts packs like the Teanaway and Wenatchee packs that are critical to establishing a viable population in the Cascades and Coast.
In 2008, the Lookout Pack was nearly wiped out due to illegal poaching. The wolves' story was chronicled in a feature documentary produced by the BBC and the Discovery Channel featuring Conservation Northwest's Jasmine Minbashian as a field team leader.