By a vote of 6-1, the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission approved a revised wolf management plan.
It includes the use of hunting and trapping as a means of controlled take. The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife believes controlled take needs to remain a tool for wolf management although it proposed no such action as of now.
Commissioners made some changes related to “controlled take” from the proposed Plan. An addendum was added clearly stating that “Use of controlled take as a management tool requires Commission approval through a separate public rulemaking process” and the definition of controlled take was modified.
Additional minor changes were made to emphasize the importance of non-lethal tools to address wolf-livestock conflict and easy access to this information. Non-lethal measures to prevent wolf-livestock conflict continue to be emphasized in all phases of the Plan, and required before any lethal control is considered.
After some discussion, Commissioners revised the definition of chronic depredation (which can lead to lethal control of wolves if non-lethals are in use and not working) in Phase 2 and 3 from two confirmed depredations with no specific time frame to two confirmed depredations in nine months.
Earlier this year, biologists counted a minimum of 137 wolves which marks a 10 percent increase over the 2018 population.
(Photo source: Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife)