The state indicates four gray wolf packs, two of which include a breeding pair, in the region.
After scrapping plans for a series of public meetings, state wildlife officials are now seeking input online on how to manage Washington’s growing wolf population.
The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife is asking people to take an online survey or leave comments by going to bit.ly/2ki1TMV. The department will also have interactive webinars later this month and in October where people can ask questions and find out how to provide their views.
Comments may also be mailed to WDFW — Wolf Post-Recovery Plan Scoping, PO Box 43200, Olympia, WA 98504-3200. The deadline to submit comments is Nov. 1.
Washington’s wolf population was virtually eliminated in the 1930s but has rebounded since 2008. The numbers have now grown to the point where wildlife officials expect wolves to be removed from the endangered species list in Washington in the next few years.
The state agency maintains a map of gray wolf packs on its website and shows four in this region, including:
the Touchet pack, with at least four wolves including a successful breeding pair in southern Columbia County as well as the upper Whiskey Creek and Coppei Creek areas of Walla Walla County,
the Butte Creek pack, also in southern Columbia County, with at least two wolves but not considered a breeding pair,
the Tucannon pack with a minimum of two wolves not considered a successful breeding pair in southern Columbia and Garfield counties,