There are now three successful breeding pairs and at least 27 wolves in Washington, according to an annual survey conducted by the state Department of Fish and Wildlife
A successful breeding pair means a mom, dad and at least two pups that make it past 6 months old. Gray wolves are listed on the state and federal endangered species list.
Washington last month adopted a monitoring and management plan for wolves here. It calls for 15 successful breeding pairs to be established before wolves can be removed from the state endangered species list.
Rocky Beach with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife says the state is “a ways away from meeting the goals of recovery but we’ve only had wolves in the state that we could confirm here for about three years so we’re doing alright.”
The Department of Fish and Wildlife has about $130,000 set aside to compensate livestock owners whose animals are killed by wolves.
“At this point we haven’t had a lot of problems yet, knock on wood,” Beach says. “So I think we’ll be fine for a couple of years here providing we don’t have a lot of depredation issues.”
Right now there are five packs in Washington.
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