Idaho to kill 2 wolf packs in National Wilderness Area
Recently, we learned that the Idaho Department of Fish and Game had hired a trapper to go into the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness Area to kill every member of the Golden and Monumental wolf packs.
Astoundingly, the United States Forest Service (USFS) is acquiescing to Idaho and letting that state’s hired trapper stay in its ranger cabins and use its federally-funded airfield. This appalling betrayal of public trust must be immediately rectified and not repeated.
The Idaho Department of Fish and Game contends it needs to kill all of the wolves from these two packs in order to bolster elk herds for recreational hunting. The shocking arrogance of the state of Idaho even requesting to access a U.S. Wilderness Area to destroy two wolf packs entirely is staggering. The capitulation by the US Forest Service is disappointing and not in keeping with the proud history of the agency. It is in complete contrast to the slogan of the National Wilderness Preservation System to “Keep Wilderness Wild”.
Ironically, the area that the Idaho Department of Fish and Game have sent their hired trapper is named after one of the original sponsors of the Wilderness Act, Senator Frank Church. Undoubtedly, Senator Church would look unkindly upon the abandonment of responsibility by USFS Chief Thomas Tidwell in granting nearly unrestrained access to what is little more than a freelance wildlife exterminator.