Logging Pushes Rare Alaska Wolves Toward Extinction
Is Alaska letting the logging industry to do their dirty work?
As the feds delay an the Endangered Species Act status review for southeast Alaska’s Alexander Archipelago wolves, the situation of these unique forest wolves dramatically worsens, largely because of large-scale logging of old-growth trees on Prince of Wales Island in the Tongass National Forest.
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Preeminent Alexander Archipelago wolf biologist and former Alaska state employee Dr. David Person believes “the Big Thorne timber sale, if implemented, will log the last remaining high-quality winter range in the central part of the island for deer — the wolves’ primary prey — diminishing the wolf population. The island’s predator-prey system, which includes hunters, will likely collapse; with less meat on the table in rural communities there will be “immense public and political pressure to kill wolves and bears.”
“This situation of an impoverished prey-base compounded by the persecution of wolves because of the diminished deer population will put wolves in a double jeopardy of extinction on the island, and the Big Thorne project is a major factor in that reality,” said Greenpeace forest campaigner Larry Edwards. “Dr. Person points out that wolf populations on Prince of Wales have declined precipitously and already face the possibility of extinction there.”
Without habitat, there is no wildlife!
The Wolf Conservation Center joins Cascadia Wildlands in urging the Secretary of Agriculture and the Forest Service to stop the reckless Big Thorne old-growth timber sale in Alaska’s Tongass Forest. If this sale goes through, it can potentially wipe out winter habitat for the Sitka deer which constitutes roughly 90% of the diet of a fragile population of southeast Alaska’s rare Alexander Archipelago wolves.
Critical support is needed from the lower 48 states. Please sign/share Cascadia Wildlands’ petition at – http://bit.ly/HSzJPR