State kills two wolves in Stevens County


Shooting from a helicopter, a marksman with the state Department of Fish and Wildlife killed two wolves in northeast Washington on Tuesday in the effort to eliminate a pack that has preyed on at least 17 cattle since July in a remote grazing area near the U.S.-Canada border.

Teams of marksmen and wildlife biologists returned to an area of northern Stevens County known as the Wedge late last week after the state upgraded its objective from killing a few wolves to killing the entire Wedge Pack.

A helicopter was called in on Monday to aid the effort, said Bruce Botka, department spokesman in Olympia. The wolves were shot about seven miles south of the border.

Gray wolves are protected by state endangered species laws, but the pack of eight or more wolves is targeted for elimination because biologists said they had turned exclusively to livestock for their prey.

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