‘Heard it all 100 times’ — Colorado Parks and Wildlife hosts Steamboat meeting with ranching community over wolf reintroduction

Trevor Ballantyne | Steamboat Pilot 

Colorado Parks and Wildlife released five gray wolves onto public land in Grand County on Dec. 18. Since then, the wildlife agency has not received any reports of the wolves attacking livestock in Colorado, but the ranching community remains concerned over how to mitigate conflicts with the animals.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife/Courtesy photo

Colorado Parks and Wildlife hosted a meeting with area livestock producers Wednesday to answer questions and listen to concerns over the state’s wolf reintroduction effort.

Packed into a room at the Steamboat Springs Community Center, ranchers heard from CPW staff about how they should go about receiving compensation for animals taken by wolves and learned about various conflict mitigation strategies recommended by the wildlife agency.

Fourth-generation Routt County rancher Patrick Stanko said it was “encouraging” that CPW staff in attendance, including the agency’s director, Jeff Davis, were willing to listen to the ranching community’s concerns. But Stanko noted the future of the reintroduction effort still includes many unanswered questions about how the project will affect local livestock.