Deschutes County Creating Wolf Depredation Committee
In central Oregon, planning is underway for a new Deschutes County Committee, to address potential conflicts between wolves and livestock. County Commissioner Phil Chang said other counties have had Wolf Depredation Committees for years, but only recently was Deschutes County declared “an area of known wolf activity” or AKA.
“We’ve had wolves travel through in the past. But now there are wolves that are taking up residence, having puppies and are going to establish what appear to be permanent packs of wolves. And that increases concerns about the potential for depredation on livestock."
Two supporters of co-existence and conservation are already on board … along with one commercial livestock operation. But Chang said they need one more livestock manager or owner to apply, before the committee can get started. He added the group will eventually help disperse state and federal funds to help prevent wolves from attacking livestock, and compensate ranchers if an animal is killed.
“They’re not set up to exterminate wolves from your community, they’re not set up to let wolves run amok in your community. They’re set up to try to strike the balance between having a state and federally listed species in your community, with certain protections, but also to provide as much protection as possible for livestock owners against losses."
Applications are due by February 24th and can be submitted on the County’s Website.
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