When cattle go missing in wolf territory, who should pay the price?

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Before its adoption in 2011, some believed Oregon’s compensation program might be more successful than others in this regard. Oregon’s liberal-leaning urban areas expanded support for wolves’ re-entry, and legislators had years of data and experience to draw on from other Western states where wolves had returned earlier. The program required ranchers to implement nonlethal wolf deterrents in order to be reimbursed — something environmental groups like Portland-based Oregon Wild valued. It also gave rural communities more oversight, and recognized the challenges ranchers face in an already marginal business by adopting provisions for missing livestock.

Seven years later, the rate of increase of confirmed livestock kills has remained below the growth rate of the state’s wolf population, which increased from 48 in 2012 to 124 by the end of 2017. Brown believes ranchers are implementing best practices for keeping livestock safe. “Producers are learning from other producers,” she says.<<<Read More>>>