Idaho Gov. Butch Otter called for spending $2 million Monday to establish a Wolf Control Fund to reduce wolf numbers in the state.
The fund would be managed by a state board separate from the Idaho Fish and Game Game Commission. Annual funding would come from $110,000 raised by the livestock industry and matching amount that would come from hunting license dollars.
“This three-pronged approach will provide the revenue needed to more effectively control Idaho’s burgeoning wolf population and ease the impact on our livestock and wildlife,” Otter said in his State of the State address.
His comments come after the federal Department of Agriculture’s Wildlife Service Agency lost $750,000 in funds since 2010. It has done most of the wolf control until recently.
The Idaho Department of Fish and Game also has bee criticized for hiring a hunter-trapper to exterminate two packs in the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness. Several wildlife groups were expected to file a lawsuit to stop the killing as early as today.
“With your unflinching support, we were able to fight through the opposition of those who would make Idaho into a restricted-use wildlife refuge and take back control of these predators from our federal landlords,” Otter said. “We’re managing them now, and they’re a trophy hunting species.
“But the population is still growing, and our resources remain at risk.”