Alaska kills one wolf per 1,218 tries
From ANIMAL PEOPLE, May 1994:
FAIRBANKS, Alaska– – The
Alaska Department of Fish and Game on
April 7 ended the first phase of its wolf-
killing campaign in Game Management Unit
20-A, the sector southwest of Fairbanks.
State killers bagged 94 wolves, 80 in snares,
two in leghold traps, and 12 with rifles.
Private hunters and trappers killed 37 more.
The state declared the total of 131 met the
winter quota of 150.
The “predator management” pro-
gram, ostensibly undertaken to protect moose
and caribou, also killed by accident 12
moose, of 23 caught; two caribou, of eight
caught; six coyotes; 13 foxes; a protected
golden eagle; an endangered wolverine; and
a snowshoe hare. Two grizzly bears were
aught, but escaped alive. In all, 36% of
the victims were non-target species.
The Department of Fish and Game
claims up to 130 wolves remain in GMU 20-
A, including 40 to 50 in the caribou calving
area. However, the killing markedly slowed
after the first few weeks of the six-month
campaign. The number of traps and snares
set, multiplied by the number of nights they
were left set, came to 114,500. At the rate
of one wolf killed per 1,218 “trap nights,” in
a house proportionately infested with mice,
using a single baited trap, it would be possi-
ble to catch one mouse every three years,
four months, and four days.
The wolf slaughter is to resume in
the fall––along with expedited slaughter of
other animals, as on April 11 the Board of
Game removed restrictions on using bait and
dogs to hunt black bears in southeastern
Alaska; authorized shooting caribou from
power boats in the Arctic region; and legal-
ized shooting big game from an off-road vehi-
cles, if stopped with the motor off.
“What this means,” explained Paul
Joslin of Wolf Haven, “is that hunters will be
able to chase and shoot animals from snow-
mobiles without the enforcement officers
being able to prove they broke the law. Prior
to this, hunters had to get off their vehicles
before shooting, and in the process left
tracks. Failure to find human tracks at some
distance from where the animals were killed
would indicate that the law had been broken.”