Enviro group pledges to help wolves "re-establish" in Washington state

First Live Wolf Confirmed In Washington State; Defenders of
Wildlife Pledges to Compensate for Washington Wolf

To: National Desk, Environment Reporter
Contact: Suzanne Laverty, 208-424-9385 or Brad DeVries,
800-989-8981, ext. 237, both of Defenders of Wildlife

BOISE, Idaho, Feb. 8, 2002 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Defenders of Wildlife
today pledged to use The Bailey Wildlife Foundation Wolf
Compensation Trust to cover verified wolf depredations of livestock
if they occur in Washington, on confirmation that an endangered
gray wolf has crossed into Washington from Idaho. According to
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service wolf biologist Tom Meier, a black
wolf tagged "Y206", was located during a routine monitoring flight
on Tuesday, February 6 of this week ten miles west of Priest Lake
inside the Washington state border, 70 years after the species was
shot, poisoned and trapped out of existence in the state.

"This is great news for wolves and wildlife supporters, and a
positive development for the entire Northwest," said Rodger
Schlickeisen, president of Defenders of Wildlife. "Wolves deserve
the chance to re-establish themselves in areas of prime historic
habitat, and Defenders stands ready to help smooth the way for this
important species with its compensation and proactive programs."

Y206 is the alpha female of the Gravelly pack and biologists
believe she may be seeking a mate in the new area where they
suspect, but have not documented, the presence of other
recolonizing wolves. Her radio collar is new and expected to last
four years, giving biologists a long time to monitor her activity.
She was scavenging the carcass of a dead moose when she was seen
from the air.

"Hopefully, she will find a suitable partner and reestablish the
first pack of wolves in Washington state since they were eradicated
over 70 years ago," Suzanne Laverty, Northwest Representative for
Defenders of Wildlife. "We've been hoping for this day to come
soon. There is plentiful habitat in this part of Washington state
and very few livestock to cause any real conflicts. It's perfect
for wolves."

On December 19, 2001, this alpha female, her six pups and one
yearling son were relocated to the Yaak River drainage in
Northwestern Montana after being in captivity since June 2001. The
pack was held to allow the pups to reach an age where they could
survive on their own after the death of the pack's alpha male. Now
80 percent of their adult size, the 10 month old pups appear to be
faring well in their new territory though biologists are still
closely monitoring them. One pup has even dispersed to British
Columbia about 15 miles beyond the U.S.-Canadian border.

On this week's routine aerial survey to track them, Meier
reported that he found the other pups from this pack fairly close
to the relocation site and then turned to look for the alpha

"We followed her signal out to the Priest Lake area in Idaho and
then just kept following it west into Washington," Meier said.

Defenders of Wildlife's The Bailey Wildlife Foundation Wolf
Compensation Trust has helped promote acceptance of reintroduced
wolves or those returning to their historic range. Through this
fund, Defenders of Wildlife has paid over $208,000 since 1987 to
ranchers to reimburse them for wolf-caused livestock losses, in
order to help create an atmosphere of greater tolerance with local
residents where wolves have been re-established. For more
information on the program and a map of payments, see

In addition, Defenders has initiated The Bailey Wildlife
Foundation Proactive Carnivore Fund which assists ranchers and wolf
biologists to find and implement alternatives to lethal control,
and to develop more preventative measures to deter wolves from
livestock. This includes the purchase of livestock guarding dogs,
electric fencing, as well as alternative pasture and feed for
livestock destined for areas of strong potential conflicts. The
program has even initiated an innovative program called the "wolf
guardians," which involves volunteers who camp near livestock in
wolf habitat, serving as a human buffer to keep wolves away.
Information on the proactive fund is at

Defenders of Wildlife is a leading non-profit conservation
organization recognized as one of the nation's most progressive
advocates for wildlife and its habitat. With more than 430,000
members and supporters, Defenders of Wildlife is an effective
leader on endangered species issues. To stay current on hot topics
in wildlife conservation, subscribe to DENlines at
http://www.defenders.org/den, Defenders of Wildlife's electronic
update and action alert network.

Editor's Note:  Many environmental organizations are funded through federal government grants (grant money comes from taxpayers' dollars).  See The Wildlands Project - the move by environmental organizations worldwide to place 1/2 of the United States "off limits" to human habitation, so wild animals like wolves and bear and have access to millions of acres of land for their habitat.  Meanwhile, "human settlements" would be established in small population areas, placing people in highly populated cities, where they would be in danger of attacks like Sept. 11th.  Sources for The Wildlands Project at this site are located at: http://www.citizenreviewonline.org/special_issues/wildlands_project_step_by_step.htm

Another excellent site following the progress of this movement is located at http://www.ruralcleansing.com/


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