July 23, 2004
July 23, 2004 -- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service authorized the lethal control of a wolf pact that repeatedly preyed on sheep near McCall, Idaho. All nine members of the Cook wolf pack were eliminated by agents of the U.S. Department of Agriculture?s Wildlife Services this week.
It was confirmed that the pack had killed more than 100 sheep belonging to one rancher this year and more than 90 sheep in the same area last year. Under Service policy, non-lethal methods to control chronically depredating wolves are attempted before lethal control is authorized. The rancher and herders tried unsuccessfully to ward off the wolves by camping with them, using guard dogs, utilizing light and siren scare devices and other non-lethal methods.
As of 2003, the Cook pack was the largest wolf pack in Idaho, according to the Nez Perce Tribe. Thirty-five wolves were reintroduced into the central Idaho wilderness in 1995 and 1996. By 2003, the population had grown to an estimated 356 wolves.