Marksmen are hunting a pack of gray wolves in northeast Washington state this week after officials decided the entire pack — believed to number at least eight wolves — needed to be killed because of repeated attacks on cattle.
The major conservation group working with Washington to manage its gray wolves agreed that the pack should be culled, but also blamed a rancher in the area for not doing more to protect his cattle.
Gray wolves are listed as endangered under state law because they were nearly wiped out a century ago by settlers.
In the last decade, however, gray wolves have started to re-establish themselves in Washington due to recovery efforts in nearby states and dispersal from Canada.
At least eight packs are now established in the eastern half of Washington, which also has a conservation plan in place — one that aims to restore wolves in the wild without those same wolves preying on livestock. The state compensates ranchers who lose livestock to wolves, but that hasn’t ended the tension.
Read the entire article on nbcnews.com: Gray wolf pack in Washington state will be shot dead after preying on cattle