Colorado agencies partner to prevent wildlife, livestock conflict

Source: Farm Progress. The original article is posted here.

Colorado agencies partner to prevent wildlife, livestock conflict

Colorado Parks and Wildlife and the Colorado Department of Agriculture have signed a Memorandum of Understanding on how the agencies will collaborate to manage the reintroduction of gray wolves and work to prevent wildlife and livestock conflicts.

The MOU directs the agencies to work together to create and share information and prevention strategies and work to ensure that agriculture producers and landowners have the appropriate support through the process. The MOU also includes specific objectives for both agencies that utilize the different expertise and resources CPW and CDA contribute.

Under the MOU, CDA will work directly with producers to provide technical assistance for non-lethal prevention methods and develop appropriate livestock management strategies that minimize livestock-predator interactions. CDA will also work with leaders from Colorado’s agricultural communities to maximize the use of non-lethal tools through education and community sharing of strategies that minimize livestock-wildlife conflict.

“Supporting agricultural producers in addressing predator conflicts through non-lethal methods is vital to maintaining a vibrant livestock sector and protecting Colorado’s wildlife,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Kate Greenberg. “I’m excited to build on our excellent relationship with CPW to provide another form of technical assistance and support to Colorado’s livestock producers.”

CPW will collaborate closely with CDA to help facilitate successful non-lethal tools and strategies in predator management. The agencies will develop and co-brand educational materials about non-lethal livestock management practices.

“This MOU shows how committed both CDA and CPW are to working collaboratively to assist livestock and agricultural producers in reducing the risk of conflict through proactive and data-driven efforts,” said CPW Director Jeff Davis.

Both agencies will also coordinate on a program that captures and analyzes data about depredation and uses peer-to-peer sharing to engage producers in deploying non-lethal tools. The goal is to measure the effectiveness of outreach and engagement strategies on the adoption of non-lethal tools and livestock management strategies that minimize depredations and conflict with wolves and other carnivores.

A press release from US Fish and Wildlife Service on Nov. 7 shared that the final 10(j) rule would become effective on Dec. 8, 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.

“The USFWS’s announcement is an affirmation that we’re on track to reintroduce wolves in 2023 with the ability to utilize the appropriate management tools,” Davis said.

The 10(j) rule designation of gray wolves as a nonessential experimental population provides additional management flexibility for Colorado Parks and Wildlife and Tribes to address potential conflicts between wolves and humans, and wolves and livestock and working dogs.

The designation of a nonessential experimental population allows reintroduced wolves to be managed by hazing, removal, or relocation by Colorado Parks and Wildlife, Tribes, or designated agent(s) for livestock depredations. More information can be found at the USFWS website .

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