Major Threat: Protect Wolves

In Legislative Session, Major Threat, Wildlife & Wildlands by OLCVstaff

We need your help to stop a Major Threat that would put wolves at risk! We just found out that HB 4127–the Wolf Compensation Fund bill–is going to a hearing on Monday, making it more urgent than ever to send an email to your lawmakers and ask them to vote NO on HB 4127.

HB 4127 would give $1 million to a controversial program called the Wolf Compensation Fund. Designed to reimburse ranchers for livestock killed by wolves (a concept we support), the Wolf Compensation Fund is controversial for a reason–the fund allows ranchers to be reimbursed for missing livestock, even if they haven’t been proven to be killed by wolves. Oregon is the only state with a Wolf Compensation Fund that allows this dangerous loophole. In 2021, out of 679 missing livestock, only 56-60 cows, goats, and sheep combined were verifiably killed or injured by wolves. If we allow ranchers to be reimbursed for all missing livestock, it will falsely elevate the numbers of livestock killed by wolves and lead to even stronger pushback to kill wolves in our state. Please take action!

Have you ever seen a wolf? I saw one once, a few years ago, when I was hiking through a wind-blown forest on Lopez Island, B.C. It stared at me with calm, yellow eyes–a moment I’ll remember for the rest of my life.

This magical moment is incredibly rare, and would be unlikely to happen here in Oregon. Historically, wolves lived statewide, but, by the early to mid 1900’s they were hunted to local extinction. In the last few decades, they’ve slowly made their way back to Oregon across the border from Idaho into 12 Oregon counties, but they still need our help to flourish.

Today, wolves are wrongly blamed for more than their fair share of livestock predation, and they’re often killed in retaliation. A total of nine wolves have been poached in Oregon within the last year. The Wolf Compensation Fund was supposed to  promote coexistence and tolerance, but those portions of the program have been ignored. Wolves are just making a comeback in Oregon and deserve to be protected, not killed. HB 4127 is moving fast, so please send an email to your lawmakers and tell them to vote NO on the Wolf Compensation Fund bill before the hearing on Monday.

Thank you,

Francesca Varela
Communications Coordinator, OLCV