Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife Director Kelly Susewind today authorized wildlife managers to cull a wolfpack that has been attacking cattle in the Colville National Forest.
Fish and Wildlife are giving environmental groups 24-hour notice to challenge the order in court. Fish and Wildlife plans to begin the operation Thursday afternoon.
The department did not say exactly how many wolves it planned to kill, though its policy calls for initially removing one or two wolves in an effort to stop attacks on livestock.
The department has confirmed the pack has injured five calves and killed one calf since Sept. 4. The most recent attack was confirmed Tuesday.
The department refers to the area as the Old Profanity Peak territory. The department shot seven members of the Profanity Peak pack in 2016. In the same area, the department shot one wolf in the Sherman wolfpack in 2017. Neither pack officially exists now, but a new pack with three or four adults and likely with two pups has formed, according to the department. The pack roams in the Kettle River Range in Ferry County.
The department shot a wolf Sept. 2 in the Togo pack, also in Ferry County, to stop attacks on cattle.
Fish and Wildlife guidelines call for the department to consider shooting one or two wolves after three attacks on livestock within 30 days.