Washington FWC to Discuss Wolf Plan Aug. 29 in Ellensburg

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The Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission will discuss the Wolf Conservation and Management Plan recommended by state wildlife managers at a special meeting in Ellensburg on Monday, Aug. 29.

The special meeting, which includes time for public comment on the plan, is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Quality Inn and Conference Center, 1700 Canyon Road, Ellensburg.

An agenda for the meeting is available at http://wdfw.wa.gov/commission/meetings.html. Two other special meetings on the recommended wolf plan are scheduled Oct. 6 and Nov. 3 in Olympia, a day prior to previously scheduled commission meetings.

The commission, a citizens’ board appointed by the Governor to set Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) policy, heard an initial presentation of the department’s recommended wolf plan at a meeting Aug. 4 in Olympia.

WDFW has been working to develop the plan since 2007, when a 17-member citizen advisory group was formed to work with department staff. It has since been the subject of public scoping and comment periods, invited and blind scientific peer review and more than a dozen meetings across the state.

The recommended plan is the preferred alternative recommended in the Final Environmental Impact Statement issued in July on wolf-management options under the State Environmental Policy Act (SEPA).

Recovery objectives included in the plan are designed to eventually remove wolves from current state endangered species protective status. The plan also includes management strategies to address conflicts involving livestock, elk and deer.

The Commission is scheduled to take action on the wolf plan at its Dec. 2-3 meeting in Olympia.

For more information on the wolf plan, see http://wdfw.wa.gov/conservation/gray_wolf