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Should “History” Count as an Adequate Reason to Kill a Wolf?

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Although only 231 rare Alexander Archipelago wolves remain on Prince of Wales Island, Southeast Alaska’s subsistence advisory panel aims to kill 69, and on federal lands no less.

The panel recommends increasing the subsistence quota by 30% claiming, “Trapping of wolves has been an historic opportunity for rural residents on Price of Wales Island… There’s a long history of being able to trap for animals such as wolf.”

Any hunting or trapping of these rare wolves is already controversial.

Threatened by logging and hunting, the Alexander Archipelago wolf is a genetically distinct subspecies of gray wolf that dens in the roots of old-growth trees in the Tongass National Forest in Alaska.

Moreover, just two years ago, the number of Alexander Archipelago wolves dropped by 60% in a single year.

“This population has been petitioned to be listed under the Endangered Species Act – twice. And it’s also involved in some litigation,” said Bruce Dale, director of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game’s wildlife conservation division.