Here to Stay

“We need to kill the Profanity Pack.” These are words many environmentalists would not say in regards to a wolf pack. Yet, Jay Kehne, a member of Conservation Northwest, believes this is what the state of Washington must do. The Profanity Pack is one of nineteen wolf packs currently living in Washington. Losing one pack will not be detrimental to the species but sparring them could be costly to cattle in the Methow.

 Most wolves will not kill cattle. Only twenty percent of wolf packs will depredate or hunt cattle. In fact, cameras have recorded wolves and cows crossing paths and not having any conflict. However, wolves are social creatures so when one does depredate, it will teach that particular hunting method to the rest of the pack—creating a major threat to ranchers.

Conservation Northwest has taken a difficult step by announcing support of culling the dangerous wolf pack. By making this concession, the organization has mollified the rancher side without risking the survival of the species as a whole. Ranchers get what they want—and what some would say they deserve—while environmentalists effectively communicate they’re willingness to compromise when it’s right. Amidst the scene of a fiery partisan issue, wolves are back in the Northwest and they are back to stay.