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The area surrounding Sun Valley, home to Living with Wolves, is the only remaining place in Idaho where wolf trapping is not allowed. This dog-friendly community opposed wolf trapping two years ago and stopped the same proposal. Once again, it is being advanced by Idaho Fish & Game in an effort to promote uniformity across the state in its trapping regulations. It is one of dozens of unscientific IDFG proposals designed to negatively impact Idaho’s recovering wolf population.

The proposals are available for comment on the IDFG website. The instructions below will help you navigate the proposals and vote. After the instructions, you will find supporting information to assist you in writing comments if you wish to voice opinions in addition to your vote. Comments are optional. Please share this information with anyone who would want to take action.

To Vote Against Wolf Trapping in the Wood River Valley (Units 48 & 49)

After you have reviewed the following instructions, CLICK HERE to get started.

  1. Scroll down to the blue Proposal banner.  (Note: There are four trapping proposals listed for the Magic Valley Region, which includes the Wood River Valley Units 48 and 49.)
  2. Select I do not support this proposal for all four items if you do not want IDFG to expand wolf trapping in this region.
  3. Enter Comments, if desired. (Comments are optional.)
  4. Enter your name, email and city.
  5. Click the blue Submit button.

After clicking Submit, you will be redirected to the main proposals page, where you can vote against other wolf hunting and trapping proposals. If you have ever purchased a fishing or hunting license in Idaho, please mention that in your comment to IDFG. They consider you to be their most important constituents.

Units 48 and 49 are the only remaining areas in Idaho where wolf trapping is not allowed. We must keep it that way. Thank you for speaking up!

To Vote Against ALL Gray Wolf Proposals

Although we are highlighting the trapping proposals for IDFG Hunting Units 48 and 49, we encourage you to also voice your disapproval for all of the wolf trapping and wolf hunting proposals. In addition to introducing wolf trapping and snaring to the Wood River Valley, the new IDFG proposals would bring year-round trapping to private land. This would result in much greater accidental capture of “non-target” animals, including dogs and other domestic animals. Another proposal will establish a 12-month wolf hunting season statewide. And another will introduce wolf snaring to the hunting units that border Yellowstone National Park, putting park wildlife at risk of snare lines set right along the borders of the park. Please consider voting against these proposals as well.

After you have reviewed the following instructions, CLICK HERE to get started.

  1. Under the blue banner Proposals and Comment Period, click on the blue Browse all Proposals button.
  2. In the Comment Opportunities section, under Species, select Gray Wolf from the drop down list and click the blue Apply button.
  3. Click the blue Review and Comment button in the first row.
  4. Scroll down to the blue Proposal banner.
  5. Select I do not support this proposal for all proposals if you do not want IDFG to expand wolf hunting and trapping across Idaho.
  6. Enter Comments, if desired. (Comments are optional.)
  7. Enter your name, email and city.
  8. Click the blue Submit button.

After clicking Submit, you will be redirected to the main proposals page. Repeat steps 1 – 8 for the remaining proposals.

The comment period for the trapping and hunting proposals extends until February 25. Everyone can participate. Comments are optional, but encouraged. If you have ever purchased a license to hunt or fish in Idaho, mention that in your comment to IDFG. Thank you for speaking up!

Background Regarding Wolf Trapping in the Wood River Valley

A current proposal from the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) will introduce wolf trapping to IDFG Hunting Units 48 & 49. It needs to be stopped. This is one of dozens of wolf-related proposals currently under consideration, but it is the one that most dramatically impacts the Wood River Valley.

For your safety and peace of mind, and for the safety of animals, wild and domestic, please take part in IDFG’s request for public input to make your opinion count. It is important that as many people as possible respond to the IDFG proposals to prevent wolf trapping and snaring from expanding in Idaho.

The Idaho Trappers Association, based in Fairfield, Idaho continues to petition IDFG to introduce wolf trapping to the Wood River Valley, just as they did two years ago when many of you spoke out against the proposal. Your resounding and united voice resulted in IDFG deciding against the proposal.

Your voice can make a difference. IDFG will tabulate the response of those in favor and those opposed to their proposals, including wolf trapping in the Wood River Valley. And they will consider that response when deciding how to proceed.

Reasons to Speak Out Against This Ill-advised and Dangerous Proposal

  • Traps and snares are dangerous and are often lethal.
  • Wolf traps are nearly impossible to release without specialized tools.
  • Snares can kill within minutes, and those set for wolves require cable cutters or other tools to release.
  • Over 173 dogs have been caught in traps and snares in Idaho since 2013. Many have died or lost limbs.
  • There is no requirement for trappers to post signage warning of their deadly devices.
  • The Wood River Valley is a popular outdoor destination. The surrounding hills, canyons, and mountains are heavily used by an increasing number of outdoor enthusiasts recreating with their children and dogs.
  • Introducing a dangerous blood sport, engaged in by only a very small number of people, will tarnish the valley’s reputation as a family-friendly and internationally renowned outdoor destination.
  • Allowing these hazardous devices in the Wood River Valley stands to negatively impact the local tourist economy and outdoor recreational experience.
  • Wolf traps and snares catch “non-target” victims as often as they catch wolves. Most die. This includes endangered and rare species such as wolverine, lynx and fisher.
  • Local residents and visitors enjoy the native wildlife of the Wood River Valley. Hunting for food and sustenance is generally accepted, while the trophy hunting and trapping of carnivores is not broadly supported.

Supporting Information and Ideas for Comments

If you choose to submit comments, please feel free to use these ideas to create your own personal message for IDFG.

Wolf traps are not just dangerous for wolves and dogs. They are dangerous for everyone and many animals, including pack animals such as horses and mules. About half of the time, the animal that is caught is not a wolf, and well over half of those unfortunate, “non-target” animals die. They include rare or endangered species like wolverine, lynx, and fisher but also eagles, mountain lions, deer and much more.

There is no need to trap wolves in the Wood River Valley. IDFG argues that public recreational wolf trapping is a tool they use to reduce wolf numbers, boost elk numbers, and reduce conflicts with livestock. However, wolves don’t exist in abundance in Idaho or in the Wood River Valley. How many wolves have you seen?

In fact, when looking at the numbers of other large predator species, there are 3-4 times more mountain lions and 15-20 times more bears than wolves in Idaho. We have relatively few wolves. Meanwhile, robust local elk populations have prompted IDFG to engage in culling operations, while selling a large number of hunting tags for reproductive cow elk in order to curb their reproduction. According to IDFG’s numbers, Idaho’s statewide elk population is within a few percent (either above or below) the all-time record high.

Regarding conflicts with livestock, the Wood River Valley is home to the Wood River Wolf Project. For more than a decade, this coexistence initiative has been using, and proving the effectiveness of, non-lethal deterrents to keep wolves and other carnivores away from livestock. This is the sort of proactive and forward-thinking conflict resolution that the communities of the Wood River Valley honor and embrace.

Trapping is a relic of the past, from a time when it was a tool of survival, meant to provide food and fur for clothing and blankets. Most trapping happened in sparsely populated areas. The Wood River Valley is a world-renowned outdoor recreation destination with countless people using our trails and backcountry and enjoying our public lands. Given modern alternatives to animal fur, much of the world (and much of the country) has turned away from trapping by limiting or eliminating it altogether.

Wolf traps and snares kill and maim. Last winter, two dogs were killed by snares, another lost a foot in a leg-hold trap, and others disappeared 40 miles north of Sun Valley in the East Fork of the Salmon. Last month, Michelle Stennett, Idaho Senate Minority Leader representing District 26 and the Wood River Valley, spent an hour and a half trying to free her dog from a wolf trap just outside of the Wood River Valley. Do you want that hazard here in your backyard? Senator Stennett was out of cell range, and her dog, in shock, bit her hand as she struggled to free him, causing injury to her thumb and hand. Two large men, who happened to be passing through the area, were eventually able to apply enough force, using their combined weight, to release the trap.

Wolf traps are much more robust than most other traps and require specialized setting tools (long metal bars) to release. Snares require the immediate use of wire cutters or other tools. The number of trappers who would likely be setting traps and snares for wolves in the Wood River Valley, could probably be counted on one hand. Does it make sense that the thousands of the people using this valley for recreation should have to do so in the midst of well-disguised lethal traps and snares?

Encompassing the entire Big and Little Wood River valleys, IDFG Hunting Units 48 and 49 are to the west and east of Highway 75, from Timmerman Hill (the “blinking light”) to Galena Summit and to the top of Trail Creek. They are the last two units (of 99 units in total) in Idaho where wolf trapping is not permitted. Our community should not be silent with the menace of wolf trapping knocking at our door.

In addition to voting online, you may always email your comments and positions on proposals to the IDFG Commissioners at:

Please encourage others to take action by sharing this information for the safety of people, and to protect wolves, dogs, and other animals, both domestic and wild.