Idaho wolves kill 34 sheep, ID bear kills 130 sheep. Which event gets covered by media?

The story how the new Lick Creek wolf pack killed 34 sheep (25 lambs, 9 ewes) is a bit old now. The media have covered it (many newspapers and some TV), but now Idaho Fish and Game has a news release on the event, and second event that didn’t seem to be worthy of news — a black bear in Eastern Idaho killed 130 sheep. This is more sheep than all the wolves in Idaho have killed this year (94 sheep).

However, more than 34 sheep are missing, so there is another opportunity for a wolf-bashing story.

Does anyone wonder why animosity to wolves lingers, given the coverage? It is fortunate that ID Fish and Game issues these full updates.

Here is the ID Fish and Game news release which is full of interesting news, such as their estimate that 170 wolf pups were born in Idaho this year. Of course, from 10 to 50% won’t survive to next year, and a number of adult Idaho wolves have died or been killed, so it is not appropriate to take last year’s numbers and add 170.



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  1. Erin Miller Avatar
    Erin Miller

    It’s because the media wan’t controversial stuff, they’ll take it and add to it if they please. Since wolves are controversial, and black bears not so much, the wolf part of the sheep killings is what got the attention. I’m surprised Fish and Game included the bear part at all!


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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