Letter to the editor: Both sides of wolf reintroduction must be considered
Please carefully study both sides of wolf reintroduction and consider the impact to mule deer and elk populations before supporting Proposition 107 this November. I support wildlife balance and have enjoyed the experience of wolves in the wild in both Alaska and Canada. These are extensive natural regions with sustained balances suited for predator-prey relationships. Colorado is a different dynamic where development and human populations bring a growing stress to our natural resources. Colorado has a long-term history of mule deer population struggles and is below management goals. Visit Colorado Parks and Wildlife and search “Colorado’s mule deer story” for information. Over recent years, our once growing elk population is also seeing a decrease due to development and habitat loss. Search AspenTimes.com for “elk herd plummets” for information. These articles point out similar concerns with development and growing human population density impacting the health of mule deer and elk populations. My question on wolf reintroduction is, does Colorado have the natural resources and protected open space to support the addition of a predator to an already stressed natural balance of wildlife and resources? Consider Colorado’s growth and where it will be in 20 years and if that impact will still support elk, deer and wolves?
Yellowstone National Park is 2.2 million protected acres and well suited for predator-pray balances, as are Alaska and Canada, but Colorado may no longer be able to support additional prey species. I would love again to hear wolves howl or see grizzly bears roam in the Rocky Mountains. But with growing development and habitat loss, is it possible to maintain existing wildlife health and wolves in Colorado?
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