Grants promote non-lethal means to cut wolf attacks

MARQUETTE – The Michigan Department of Natural Resources has received $22,000 from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to help livestock owners use non-lethal means to reduce the risk of wolf predation.

The money was part of a package of $850,000 in Wolf Livestock Demonstration Project grants distributed to the states of Arizona, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington, Wyoming and the San Carlos Apache Nation. In the Midwest, a total of $152,000 was dispersed within Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin.

“Techniques include the use of frightening devices, guard animals, fencing and other ways to prevent access to livestock, and use of best management practices for livestock operations,” Fish and Wildlife Service officials said in a news release. “Interested livestock producers will work with the Department of Natural Resources to develop a plan to address wolf concerns in a non-lethal fashion, including an evaluation of the effectiveness of the chosen techniques.”

The grants assist livestock producers in undertaking proactive, non-lethal activities to reduce the risk of livestock loss from predation by wolves, and compensate producers for livestock losses caused by wolves. The program provides funding to states and tribes, with federal cost-share not to exceed 50 percent.

State officials in Wisconsin received $50,000 to provide landowner compensation for death or injury verified to have been caused by wolves to livestock, hunting dogs and pets. Minnesota received $80,000 to compensate landowners who have lost livestock animals to wolves.

Nationally, the money issued through the program was awarded equally between proactive and compensatory activities.

John Pepin can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 206.