Environews, Regulars and Shorts

Environews: Another wolf killed in Utah

By Amy Brunvand

by Amy Brunvand

We reached the old wolf in time to watch a fierce green fire dying in her eyes. I realized then, and have known ever since, that there was something new to me in those eyes—something known only to her and to the mountain. I was young then, and full of trigger-itch; I thought that because fewer wolves meant more deer, that no wolves would mean hunters’ paradise. But after seeing the green fire die, I sensed that neither the wolf nor the mountain agreed with such a view. — Aldo Leopold

Another wolf killed in Utah

Last year a Utah hunter shot a wolf after mistaking her for a coyote. No charges were filed. This past November a second wolf was killed in Utah after getting caught in a strangulation snare set to kill coyotes. A third wolf was killed in Colorado last April by a hunter who also claimed he couldn’t tell a coyote from a wolf. It’s bad enough that so many hunters don’t seem to know what animal they are shooting at, but “accidental” shootings are also preventing wolves for dispersing back into their historic range. In Utah, indiscriminate killing of coyotes is encouraged by a $50 bounty created under the 2012 Mule Deer Protection Act and in parts of Utah wolves were also stripped of Endangered Species Act protections due to a sneaky rider on a 2011 budget bill. In a press release, Michael Robinson, a spokesperson for the Center for Biological Diversity, says “Utah should end its futile and brutal war on coyotes, which in turn has had a deadly effect on at least two wolves that have wandered into the state.” He adds, “There’s plenty of room for wolves in Utah and with an effort to educate hunters, they would almost certainly come back on their own.”


More January 2016 Environews: 

$14 million for misguided effort to privatize public lands

Utah national park visitation soars

Utah air quality problem, “serious nonattainment”

Utah gets utility-scale solar

Lake Powell pipeline a costly water boondoggle


This article was originally published on December 30, 2015.