Letters and comments for September 22, 2011

By Observer Upload September 22, 2011 07:39 pm
Letters and comments for September 22, 2011

Not ranchers’ interest

To the Editor:

Hey Suzanne Stone, Defenders of Wildlife, did you really say “ranchers helped to craft Oregon’s program and should be satisfied” and that no state has done more “to try to protect the interests of ranchers” (from “Ranchers uneasy living among wolves,” Sept 13)?

I know it’s been seven years but I’ll bet you haven’t forgotten that I, representing livestock producers on the wolf advisory committee, and the representative of Eastern Oregon county commissions, both wrote minority reports on that plan.

Remember, I wrote a page by page critique on the draft plan with reasonable changes that would make it simpler, less biased and more reasonable? I included a concept white paper on managing wolves by zones, places where they would be allowed to colonize and places where they would not. The report included a “full and fair” compensation model for livestock losses attributable to wolves. I also included in the report a minority opinion on legal status of the wolf in Oregon that concluded with a plea that the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission reject the draft plan and review the status of the wolf under Oregon law and remove it from our endangered species list.

I listed in the report other elements that the plan needed in order to be supported by the livestock industry including the tools and latitude to aggressively mitigate livestock-wolf conflict and swift removal of wolves that predate on livestock. Only one of our requirements was included in the adopted plan: That prevents the transplantation of wolves.

There must have been a misprint in your quote. It should more accurately read that “no state has done more to protect wolves” or “no state has done less to protect the interest of ranchers.’’ ODFW is doing more to further your agenda than they have ever done to protect the interests of ranchers.

Sharon Beck