Against Wolf Protection


Since the re-introduction of the gray wolf into the Yellowstone National Park, the Nez Perce Tribe, US Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services, and Idaho’s Department of Fish and Game have monitored wolf populations.  They followed the Isle Royale studies using aerial counts, scat analysis, and necropsies to analyze the pack number, pack size, and location.  Taking this data they estimated minimum total populations, reproduction rates, and mortality rates.  The main result that they found, relative to the controversy, was the annual increase of the wolf population of 20%.  Some scientists argue that with the current population size and the annual increase of 20% that wolves can withstand harvest of a limited number of individuals.  This is the main argument that people, as well as, organizations against the protection of wolf use to support their claims about the issue.

Ranchers and local residents are concerned with the impact that wolves will have in the area if the population continues to increase at 20% each year.  The ranchers are concerned about their livestock and the economic impact it could have if the wolf were to prey on their cattle. They also claim that they have the right to their land, due to private property, and if wolves are constantly preying on their livestock, then they should be able to control the wolf population.  Local residents are concerned about the safety of their families and see the wolf as a highly unwanted predator.  Some don’t know why the wolf was reinstated to the area to begin with and argue that the wolf population needs to be maintained.  

Hunting organizations and hunters themselves interest in this controversy is the impacts the wolf has on the ungulate species of elk, moose, caribou, deer, and etc.  They do not know how these species populations will respond to the increasing population of the gray wolf and what effects it will have on hunting strategies that are currently in place.  The wolf could create many obstacles for hunters because it introduces another hunter, being the wolf, competing for the same species.