WA House Committee Approves Wolf Radio Collar Bill

Feb 7, 2020

Credit Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife

A Washington House committee today [Friday] approved a bill that would lead to more radio collars on wolves.

The bill sponsored by Rep. Joel Kretz (R-Wauconda) would require the Department of Fish and Wildlife to use radio collars when possible to monitor wolves. It also requires the agency to collar at least two of the animals in each pack that have been causing trouble for farmers and ranchers.

“The range riders, the ranchers that are dealing with that have expressed a lot of frustration that we’ve embraced non-lethal, preventative techniques," Kretz said. "It’s hard to do when you have no idea where the wolves are. You can’t get in between the wolves and the livestock. So this will be an important tool in approving our preventative actions on the ground and I urge your support.”

Kretz’s bill was approved unanimously by the House Rural Development, Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee.

It also encourages the state to put collars on at least one wolf in every pack the agency has confirmed lives in the state. The bill specifies the agency must use radio collars it already owns.