The California Fish and Wildlife Commission is considering new regulations to ban nighttime hunting and lethal trapping in California’s gray wolf habitat. These regulations are an essential step in establishing a strong wolf recovery and management plan for California.
Mistaken killings of returning gray wolves pose a very real threat to the Shasta pack family and gray wolf recovery in California overall. Documented cases throughout the United States show that wolves are frequently killed by hunters targeting coyotes during night hunts and by lethal traps and snares set for coyotes and other animals.
While wolf recovery and management in California will be a long-term effort involving many stakeholders, the most immediate risks to the species can be addressed right now. The commission’s adoption of a ban against nighttime hunting and lethal trapping in wolf habitat would greatly reduce the likelihood of Endangered Species Act violations caused by mistaken killings.
~Erin Hauge, Sacramenta, California
Photograph: A trail camera shot dated Aug. 9, 2015, shows five gray wolf pups in Northern California. (Credit: CDFW)