Wolf management in Wisconsin: Listening session and public comment opportunities

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The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) announced that it will hold a virtual public hearing session on its newly proposed wolf management plan on Tuesday, February 7, 2023 at 4:00 p.m. Interested parties can view the proposed plan and more information about the planning process ahead of the meeting at: https://dnr.wisconsin.gov/topic/wildlifehabitat/wolfmanagementplan.
Anyone wishing to comment or make comments during the live listening session must pre-register by Monday, February 6, 2023 at 12:00 p.m. The registration link is included in the above URL.
Anyone can tune in to the live feed of Tuesday’s listening session on DNR’s YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZAMpsiAPWoc.
The listening session is an adjunct and complement to the public review and comment phase of the proposed wolf management plan. This public review and comment period ends on February 28, 2023. Comments can be submitted to the DNR for this purpose via their website using the online comment tool, by email and by post. Email comments can be sent to: [email protected] or Comments may be sent by mail to: Wolf Management Plan Comments, 101 S. Webster St., PO Box 7921, Madison WI 53707-7921.
In 2021, $179,344.06 was paid out in wolf damage payments statewide.
Reports listing the reported issues with wolves are available on the DNR website: https://dnr.wisconsin.gov/topic/WildlifeHabitat/wolf/maps.html. Under the Predation Reports heading, scroll down and click on the report for the year you want. Note: Depredation is a fancy word for attack. Reports for confirmed and probable wolves, verified wolf harassment or threats, unconfirmed wolves or complaints, and confirmed non-wolf predations or complaints are all presented by year.
For example, in 2022, there were reported confirmed/probable wolves/attacks in 12 different counties in Wisconsin, including one in Lincoln County (a Plott hound), and documented attacks included dairy calves, domestic dogs, hounds, chickens, lambs, calves and heifers of different breeds.
In addition, verified incidents of wolf harassment or threats affecting the safety of humans, pets, and livestock were documented in seven counties and included residential wolf threats, domestic/domestic dog threats, and cow threats, including dairy and beef cattle, and bison. Many other unacknowledged complaints were also filed, affecting some of the same but also many more counties, also involving the safety of people, domestic animals, livestock, horses, deer and adult sheep.
A February 10, 2022 federal court ruling resulted in gray wolves being listed as an endangered species in the lower 48 states (excluding the northern Rocky Mountain region). As such, wolves are protected federally. Harvesting and combating the deadly devastation are prohibited. Translated? You cannot shoot or kill a wolf.
The DNR website said it will continue with its robust wolf population monitoring program and the development of an updated wolf management plan. The goal is to maintain a healthy, safe wolf population in the state while working with UWDA-Wildlife Services to address wolf conflicts.

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