WASHINGTON DEPARTMENT OF FISH AND WILDLIFE
NEWS RELEASE
600 Capitol Way North, Olympia, WA 98501-1091

October 04, 2013
Contact: Commission Office, (360) 902-2267

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Commission amends state wildlife interaction rules

OLYMPIA - The Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission amended several state wildlife interaction rules, including those addressing conflicts between wolves and livestock, during a public meeting today (Oct. 4) in Olympia.

The amendments approved by the commission, a citizen panel appointed by the governor to set policy for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), are more consistent with Washington's Wolf Conservation and Management plan and implement 2013 legislation.

Those amendments include:

  • Making permanent an emergency rule that permits ranchers, farmers, and other pet and livestock owners in the eastern third of the state to kill a wolf that is attacking their animals.
  • Adding sheep, goats, swine, donkeys, mules, llamas and alpacas to the list of animals livestock owners could be compensated for if those animals are killed by wolves. The previous list only included cattle, sheep and horses.
  • Permitting state compensation regardless of whether livestock owners were raising the animals for commercial purposes.
  • Compensating livestock owners for their losses at market value.

Amendments approved by the commission will be available by mid-October on WDFW's website at http://wdfw.wa.gov/about/regulations/.

In other business, the commission approved two land transactions, including the purchase of 1,255 acres along Charley and Asotin creeks in Asotin County to protect riparian habitat for steelhead and bull trout, as well as conserving terrestrial habitat for bighorn sheep and elk.

The commission also received briefings on wolf management activities this summer and updates to Hydraulic Code Rules, which regulate construction around state waterways to protect fish.