Washington wolf

Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife trail camera footage of an adult wolf. The department has killed a wolf in southeastern Washington.

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife killed a wolf in southeast Washington on Friday and will leave it to ranchers to kill a second wolf if they see one on their land.

The department reported Monday it lethally removed an adult wolf from a pack in Columbia County. The new and unnamed pack has been attacking calves north of the Touchet pack and west of the Tucannon pack territories since August.

Fish and Wildlife also reinstated permits for ranchers to shoot one more wolf. The permits expire Dec. 10.

The department originally issued ranchers the permits Nov. 10. When more calves were attacked, Fish and Wildlife Director Kelly Susewind authorized department employees to kill one or two wolves.

State law allows ranchers to shoot wolves caught attacking their livestock. The permits allow a rancher’s family or employees to shoot a wolf on their private property. The rancher can’t hire outside help or bait the wolves.

The attacks have been occurring on private land. Three ranchers have had calves attacked.

In response to the most recent depredations, a rancher surrounded fences with ribbons, known as fladry, and reduced the size of one pasture with calves.

Before one wolf was killed, the pack had four adults and four pups, according to the department.

The Columbia County wolf was the first killed by the department this year.

Earlier this year, Susewind authorized department employees to remove up to two wolves in the Togo pack in northeast Washington.

The department ended the operation in September without removing any wolves. The department has not confirmed new attacks by the pack since then.

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