Wolves Conservation Status
When you look at the history of what has occurred for the wolf, it makes you wonder how they have been able to survive until now. These animals have been heavily hunted since the early 1600’s. The fact that we now have more advanced weapons has only made it worse. Some of them were hunted to get them out of certain locations or for food. Most of them were hunted to take their skins for warm and to make money.
It is estimated that in the 19th century more than one million wolves around the world were needlessly killed. It may surprise you to learn that even in the United States things weren’t on their side. In 1950’s an anti wolf campaign was initiated that lead to the legal destruction of thousands of them. It wasn’t until mid-1970’s when it was decided that it needed to stop.
Even so, the damages had already been done with the wolves seeing a drastic reduction in their numbers as well as their natural habitat. They still have not been able to make a strong comeback over all even though they are doing quite well in some locations thanks to protective programs and organized implementation efforts.
Many species of wolves continue to be endangered at this point in time. For many, they aren’t nearly as important as some of the other animals out there that are on this same list. That has made it even harder to get organized efforts in place and to get adequate funding to help cover the costs of the efforts that are in place to protect them.
Montana and Idaho removed the protective status of wolves residing there. Now it is legal for them to be hunted during particular seasons of the year. In most other locations it is illegal to kill them but people do so anyway. When the risk of being caught trapping or shooting them is there they turn to poison.
It can be very hard to determine the cause of death for a wolf by the time it is found. There can be no traces of poison left in the body. Even if there is, it is extremely difficult to prove where it came from. What often happens is those want to get rid of wolves will place poison on the carcass of a newly killed animal. They leave it in the wild for the wolves to find and feed upon. This can kill and entire wolf pack in very little time.
This is a very painful way to die though and one that isn’t very humane. Additionally, it isn’t always the wolves that find this source of food. As a result other types of animals can be killed as well though such efforts.
Getting people to understand that wolves are a significant part of nature is part of the efforts in place to protect them. Changing the mindset that people have about them is also important. When these animals are killed then they are one step closer to extinction. Protecting their natural environment is important as well. The smaller area that they have to cover for food and shelter the less likely they are going to be able to survive.
There are many organizations out there dedicated to helping the population of wolves to increase. They also have programs that help to introduce wolves to locations where they once lived but then were extinct. They have been successful in many areas including Yellowstone National Park. Even so, many species of wolves continue to be in grave danger today.