Wolf Policy and Management Case Analysis
The case of managing wolves within the United States has been an ongoing issue, which, despite being addressed over time, seems to have not found an outstanding solution that would otherwise benefit the management of these wildlife animals. The more affected are the Gray Wolf population, which was once among the largest herd of animals existing within the Northern hemisphere. This paper is developed to provide a case analysis of the wolf management policy and define various recommendations that may help protect and safeguard the said wild animals.
Summary of the Case
Wolves have been known to have a profound effect on the ecosystem in which they inhabit. Since long in 1995 after the reintroduction of the gray wolves in the United States, the population of wolves had risen. However, within the 21st Century, the wolf ecosystem has been damaged and thus endangering the wolf species. More specifically, the Gray Wolf (Canis lupus), also known as the Timber or tundra wolf, is among the species which have been endangered by human activates which have destroyed the ecosystems of these wild animals. According to Murray, Bastille‐Rousseau, Adams, and Waits, (2015), humans have considered the wolves as deadly animals since they contend with people for the top predator position in the food chain.
However, since the reintroduction of the wolves, controversies have raised due to the issue of land policy and lives of people living in the West. Fear from the inhabitants of areas in the west is rising since the wolves are known to cause agricultural damage to farm animals and even human beings. The people feel that they are the endangered species since they are to cohabit with the wolves. The problem, therefore, arises with the policies and management that must be undertaken to ensure the cohabiting of humans and wolves will be safe.
Essential Issues Described in the Case
One of the most important matters that have been outlined in the case is the subject of land ownership and policies to ensure land conflicts between the wolf and people is managed. According to Doi.gov (2017), people had already settled in the West and developed businesses in these regions. The reintroduction of the wolves, however, would mean that land policies within the West would shift to accommodate these wild animals in the area. People living in the West, therefore, are not content with the approach to restoring the wolves in the West.
Another major issue is the overall human and livestock security living around the wolves’ ecosystems. For long, the wolves have been feared to be dangerous animals that may cause physical harm to people and result in death. Moreover, many large farm owners have claimed that wolves are known for their attacks on the livestock reared in farms. This is an issue, which the people living in the West have raised with their concerns being that the wild animal may escape from their boundaries and cause harm to them or their livestock. According to Wiles, Allen and Hayes, (2011), these concerns are said to affect the overall businesses conducted in the region with people fearing the wolves and the large farm owners claiming their farm animals are in danger.
The ranchers in the Yellowstone area have argued that they are afraid of the wolves that may stray outside their restriction area and question the management of these wildlife animals of how they are to manage such stray animals. Their primary concern is that since the wolf, especially the gray wolf, is considered an endangered species, then, if these creatures attack the ranchers, what policy will be applied if they kill the wolf? The farmer’s issue asserts that people would be powerless to harm these creatures even if they are out of their bounds, thereby instilling fear of the animals.
Causes resulting in the Situation
The primary cause of the problem is the reintroduction of the wolves in the regions where people have already inhabited. Wolves are wild animals and cannot be reared by humans. However, the animals can only be tamed. The approach to restoring the wolves in the West where people live and have their businesses has thus resulted in the issue and the many claims by different groups of individuals. The causes of the situation are related since they involve the actions taken by the people in the West before the reintroduction of the wolves as well as the policies and regulations of managing the wolves that are in place.
According to Murray et al., (2015), fear is expected among the people living in the west since the wolves are wild animals. Their predation is both on other animals and human beings. However, the policy claiming that these animals are an endangered species safeguards them, but not the community, which they cohabit within the West. If these wolves become stray and have access to the lands of people, it is evident that they would result in massive damage to the agricultural products in the farms, loss of lives of people and death of animals reared within the same.
However, if people had not settled in these regions in the first place, none of the concerns would be raised. The settlement of individuals led to the destruction of the ecosystem of the wolves, resulting in their lives being terminated, and therefore leading to the terming of the wild animals to as endangered species. Since the wolves must be reintroduced in the same region where their habitat would support their growth and development, then the policies applied to protect the wolves are to be examined and considered for their impact on people within the region.
The best course of action that would assume the benefits of the wildlife management of the wolves and consider the welfare of the people in the West must be considered. In the situation, it would be important to develop policies, which protect the population in the West in the incident of an attack by the wolves while within their premises. In this case, it should be considered that, even though the wolves are endangered species, they are also dangerous to people and their livestock. Therefore, if the people kill the stray wolves thereby causing harm to them, they should not be held against the Wolf Management Policy.
However, the Wolf Management activities to constrain the animals within their restricted areas must as well be considered. The type of materials that will be used to demarcate the boundary between the land where wolves are kept and the region where people live and operate their business must be considered. It would be recommended that a combination of both electric fences and walls be used to ensure the wolves do not stray outside their boundaries while protecting the entry of unauthorized people in the region over the barrier. Moreover, it would be recommended that the walls be high enough to prevent the jumping of these animals, and the top of these walls to also be covered with electric fences that prevent people from hoping inside the wolf restriction zone.
Another recommendation would be to use IP cameras, which should be strategically placed along the wall barrier. The IP cameras are necessary to record the events happening within the wall boundary and should be sensitive to motion within the walls. If the cameras note a movement, they are to send signals to the central management of these wolves and the team can retrieve a live feed from the camera to monitor the activities that are happening. The cameras would be useful in noting the wolves and if they are out of their restriction zone. The gadgets can also show evidence regarding people trying to gain access to the restriction area without being authorized.
The solutions provided would help manage the wolf and ensure that in the event of the animals breaking out of their limit zone, the management team would have a word to tell the people to remain indoors while the search for the animal is undergoing. Moreover, it would be hard for these animals to the stray outside since the protective measures to prevent the same is high. The animals would be in no position to exit the region unless the wildlife services are transferring them. Security for the people and their livestock in the West will thus be safeguarded from these wolves.
The suggested actions would be implemented through obtaining the necessary funds and resources to develop these barriers. The plan would be presented to the Wildlife Services and request of funds made to promote the event. However, there are potential points in which the anticipated program may have. For instance, the plan would involve using electric fences on the outside of the restriction zone, thereby posing a threat to the civilians outside in case they get in contact with the same. Moreover, if the wolves may also get in touch with the same, then it may result in harmful effects, which would thus endanger the wolf species even more.
The downside of the solution is that it would require massive financing to purchase the resources and materials for the construction of the perimeter wall. It is also time consuming since the development would take several days. However, if implemented, the progress of the implementation would be measured regarding how the perimeter wall is improving concerning its construction. The regions would be examined for their effectiveness and whether the animals would be safe and retained by the same.
The case of managing wolves within the United States has been an ongoing issue, which, despite being addressed over time, seems to have not found a lasting solution that would otherwise benefit the management of these wildlife animals. Wolves have been known to have a profound effect on the ecosystem in which they inhabit. Since long in 1995 after the reintroduction of the gray wolves in the United States, the population of wolves had risen. However, within the 21st Century, the wolf ecosystem has been damaged and thus endangering the wolf species. The problem, therefore, arises with the policies and management that must be undertaken to ensure the cohabiting of humans and wolves will be safe.
Doi.gov (2017). Management of Wolves. Retrieved 20 September 2017, from https://www.doi.gov/ocl/management-wolves
Murray, D. L., Bastille‐Rousseau, G., Adams, J. R., & Waits, L. P. (2015). The challenges of red wolf conservation and the fate of an endangered species recovery program. Conservation Letters, 8(5), 338-344. From http://www.academia.edu/download/37333031/Science_2014.pdf
Shafritz, J. M., Russell, E. W., Borick, C. P., & Hyde, A. C. (2017). Introducing public administration (9th ed.). New York, NY: Routledge. ISBN: 9781138666344
Wiles, G. J., Allen, H. L., & Hayes, G. E. (2011). Wolf Conservation and Management Plan. Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Wildlife Program. From http://wdfw.wa.gov/publications/00001/