FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: September 26, 2014
Contact: Melanie Gade, Defenders of Wildlife; email@example.com; (202) 772-0288
Federal Funding for Non-lethal Wolf Management Provides Best Tools to Manage Wolves
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (the Service) announced it would provide $900,000 in grants as part of the Wolf Livestock Demonstration Project Grant Program. This program authorizes the Service to administer grants annually for five years to livestock producers in the states of Arizona, Idaho, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Mexico, Oregon, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming willing to implement non-lethal deterrents to keep livestock away from wolves. The program funds the implementation of non-lethal management programs by providing up to 50 percent cost-share for purchasing non-lethal tools, and also compensates producers for livestock losses caused by wolves.
Non-lethal tools -- guard dogs, strobe lights, electric fencing – can be more effective and sustainable than lethal tools – aerial gunning, hunting and trapping – in preventing wolf and livestock conflicts. Defenders of Wildlife has proven this for the past seven years at a project in Wood River Valley in Blaine County, Idaho where the project is using nonlethal management strategies to protect more than 25,000 sheep annually grazing on the Sawtooth National Forest. Despite being one of the highest concentrations of wolves and livestock sharing the same landscape, the project area has the lowest loss rate of livestock depredation due wolves statewide.
Jamie Rappaport Clark, President and CEO of Defenders of Wildlife, issued the following statement:
“Federal funding for non-lethal wolf management is an effective means of accomplishing our national goal of protecting imperiled wolves without requiring individual livestock owners to shoulder a financial burden for doing so. The grant program compensates producers for livestock losses caused by wolves while also finding proactive solutions to prevent these conflicts from occurring in the first place. It’s a “win-win” formula for both ranchers and the wildlife with which they co-exist. Today’s grants highlight the importance of Congress continuing to provide funding for livestock producers who are willing to take proactive action to protect wolves.”
Defenders of Wildlife is dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities. With more than 1.1 million members and activists, Defenders of Wildlife is a leading advocate for innovative solutions to safeguard our wildlife heritage for generations to come. For more information, visit www.defenders.org and follow us on Twitter @DefendersNews.