Outdoors blog

Updated: Wildlife Commission tackling Washington wolf plan today in Spokane

ENDANGERED SPECIES – Washington’s proposed Wolf Conservation and Management Plan will be presented and discussed during the state Fish and Wildlife Commission meeting today, starting at 9 a.m. at the Ramada Spokane Airport, 8909 W. Airport Dr.

Public comment will be taken during the afternoon session.

This is the last of four public meetings the commission has scheduled on the controversial management plan that's been two years in the making.

The wolf plan is coming to a head as Washington has documented five breeding packs in the state and as the state Legislature is presparing to convene for yet another round of budget cuts to the Washington Fish and Wildlife Department. See today's story regarding the uncertainly building for financing wolf management and covering the costs of wolf depredations to livestock.

See the agenda for the commission meeting, which continues through Friday for considering other state wildlife issues.

See details of the proposed wolf plan and a timetable for its authorization.

Here's an AP story running in papers today dealing with issues such as why the commission's wolf plan meeting was rescheduled from Olympia to Spokane.

The Spokesman-Review will cover the meeting for a report in Friday's paper.

Read on for more details about the meeting, which was rescheduled from Olympia to Spokane just last week.

OLYMPIA – A Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission work session on a proposed state Wolf Conservation and Management Plan will be held Nov. 3 in Spokane, followed by a meeting Nov. 4 on other issues.

The citizen commission, which sets policy for the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), will hold both meetings at the Ramada Spokane Airport hotel, 8909 W. Airport Drive, in Spokane. The commission’s regular November meeting had previously been scheduled in Olympia.

At the Nov. 3 work session, which is scheduled to begin at 9 a.m., the commission will resume its discussion about the Wolf Conservation and Management Plan recommended for approval by WDFW. Public comments will be accepted during the afternoon portion of the meeting.

The recommended plan is designed to guide state management efforts as wolves re-establish a sustainable breeding population in the state. The plan is available online at http://wdfw.wa.gov/conservation/gray_wolf/.

The commission is expected to take action on the plan in December.

At the meeting on Nov. 4, the commission is scheduled to take action to amend existing restrictions on importation of harvested wildlife from states known to harbor chronic wasting disease (CWD) in wildlife populations. The proposed change would add Maryland and Minnesota to the list of states with CWD. The restrictions are aimed at protecting Washington’s native deer, elk and moose populations.

In other business, the commission is scheduled to consider approval of a proposed acquisition of 7,711 acres in Kittitas County and hear a briefing from WDFW staff on criteria for setting population objectives for deer and elk.

The Nov. 4 meeting will open to the public at 9 a.m. Initially, the commission’s November regular meeting was scheduled to run Nov. 4-5, but the commission now expects to conclude its business on Friday and not meet on Saturday, Nov. 5.




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Rich Landers
Rich Landers writes and photographs stories for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including a Sunday feature section and a Thursday column. He also writes the Outdoors Blog.

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