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Wolves in Oregon

Wolf Program Updates

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January 10, 2019

Wolf Plan revision to be presented to Commission in March

Some progress made, but stakeholders could not find consensus on several topics

SALEM, Ore.—After completing the last scheduled facilitated meeting with stakeholder representatives on Monday, Jan. 8, ODFW staff are working to finalize a revised Wolf Conservation and Management Plan. That Plan will be presented to the Commission at its March 15 meeting in Salem for final adoption.

Last year, Commissioners decided to postpone Wolf Plan revisions and conduct additional facilitated outreach in hopes of getting more consensus from stakeholders. Professional facilitator Deb Nudelman with Kearns and West facilitated five meetings with stakeholders from late August 2018 through early January 2019.

While stakeholders representing ranching, hunting and wolf conservation came to agreement on some topics, there was no consensus on several of the most controversial issues including the number of livestock depredations that leads to consideration of  lethal removal of wolves when nonlethal deterrents have not worked. Environmental group stakeholders with Oregon Wild, Cascadia Wildlands, Center for Biological Diversity, and Defenders of Wildlife announced late last Friday, Jan. 4 that they would not attend the final meeting.

“We were disappointed these groups left the discussion and we did not have the full stakeholder group present at the final meeting,” said Derek Broman, ODFW Carnivore Coordinator. “Since the drafting of the original 2005 plan, stakeholders remain very passionate so consensus is challenging to achieve.”

The facilitated process was designed to create a space for stakeholders to negotiate and allow for give and take on all sides,” he continued. “We thank all stakeholders for their time and attention at the meetings and for the progress made on several issues, and everyone thanks Kearns and West for their professional facilitating of these meetings.”

Stakeholder groups were able to find some consensus on wolf collaring priorities, the desire to increase the use of nonlethal techniques and funding enhanced population modeling. But stakeholders remained divided on lethal take of wolves when they are killing livestock, including the number and time frame of confirmed depredations before lethal control of wolves is considered.

ODFW is responsible for investigating livestock depredations and uses a rigorous, evidence-based process to determining if a wolf or wolves was responsible.  A certain number of “confirmed” livestock depredations can lead to consideration of lethal removal of wolves by the department or a landowner. Currently, the Plan allows for consideration of lethal removal after two confirmed depredations within no specific time frame, but ODFW typically authorizes lethal removal after three or more confirmed depredations. In practice, ODFW has denied more lethal removal requests for wolves than it has approved.

Since the first Wolf Conservation and Management Plan was approved in 2005, hunting of wolves has been in the Plan as a potential tool to manage wolf populations. Throughout the current review of the Wolf Plan, no proposals have been made by ODFW to begin hunting wolves.  If hunting of wolves were to be proposed by staff in the future, it would have to be approved by the Commission in a public rule-making process.

The Wolf Plan proposal will be available for review prior to the March 15 meeting Commission meeting on the wolf website at www.odfw.com/wolves.

Contact:
Michelle Dennehy, (503) 947-6022, Michelle.N.Dennehy@state.or.us
Derek Broman, (503) 947-6095, Derek.J.Broman@state.or.us


Wolf Management Zones
Photo shows the breeding male of White River wolves with two pups, taken Aug. 19 by remote camera on the Warm Springs Indian Reservation. Photo courtesy of Wildlife Department BNR-Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs. Click photo to enlarge

August 29, 2018

Pups for White River Wolves

A new pair of wolves in the White River Unit (southern Wasco County) south of Mt Hood has produced at least two pups this year.

A remote camera on the Warm Springs Indian Reservation first captured images of two pups on Aug. 10. This marks the first known reproduction by wolves in the northern portion of Oregon’s Cascade Mountains since wolves began returning to the state in the 2000s.

Wolves in Wasco County and anywhere west of Hwys 395-78-95 are protected by the federal Endangered Species Act, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the lead management agency.

ODFW, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs are working together to monitor this group of wolves.
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Wolf Management

The Oregon Wolf Conservation and Management Plan and associated technical rules guide all ODFW wolf related activities. Wolves throughout Oregon are delisted from the state Endangered Species Act (ESA). Wolves are still protected by the Wolf Plan and Oregon statute.

Wolves west of Hwys 395-78-95 remain protected by the federal ESA. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the lead management agency for wolves that occur west of Hwys 395-78-95.

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Wolf Management Zones
Wolves in Oregon: Federal Vs. State Management Boundary. Click map to enlarge

About Gray Wolves

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Wolves and Livestock

The goal of Oregon’s Wolf Conservation and Management Plan is to ensure the conservation of gray wolves as required by Oregon law while protecting the social and economic interests of all Oregonians. Minimizing wolf-livestock conflict and reducing livestock losses to wolves is an important part of the Wolf Plan.

Information and Assistance for Livestock Producers

Non-lethal Measures to Minimize Conflict

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