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Wolves Suspected in Whitman County Sheep Death

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Washington State Fish and Wildlife officials say they believe a wolf or wolves are responsible for the death of 3 sheep in Whitman county. The killings happened north of the Town of Lamont near the Whitman/Lincoln county line. This marks the first time wolf attacks have occurred in this region in decades.

Madonna Luers is a spokeswoman for Fish and Wildlife, who says the agency has not yet confirmed if there is an actual pack in the area.

Luers: “All we can determine is that this is an individual wolf, not a pack, we have no signs of a pack, and an individual wolf could take down a sheep, where with bigger animals like cattle horses, so on , it takes a pack.”

Luers says the Palouse terrain is not the normal wolf habitat because of a lack trees and cover, but it’s possible the wolves may have come in from Idaho.

She says if it’s determined that a pack is in that area, her agency will try to tap and radio collar pack members. But she says there would be no action taken to kill any, as they are listed as a state endangered species. In this case ,the sheep had managed to get out from an electric fence when they were attacked.

Luers says wildlife conflict specialists have been working with the rancher and others in the area to advise them of non-lethal deterrents to prevent future wolf attacks.

Steve was part of the Spokane Public Radio family for many years before he came on air in 1999. His wife, Laurie, produced Radio Ethiopia in the late 1980s through the '90s, and Steve used to “lurk in the shadowy world” of Weekend SPR. Steve has done various on air shifts at the station, including nearly 15 years as the local Morning Edition host. Currently, he is the voice of local weather and news during All Things Considerd, writing, editing, producing and/or delivering newscasts and features for both KPBX and KSFC. Aside from SPR, Steve ,who lives in the country, enjoys gardening, chickens, playing and listening to music, astronomy, photography, sports cars and camping.
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