How A Colorado Wolf Iniative Could Effect Utah

Feb 12, 2020

Wolves are a pillar of the image of the “wild west."  Throughout the years, wolves have been going on and off the endangered species list . In November, a citizen initiative in Colorado will be voted on to decide whether or not to introduce a wolf pack into the state’s wild. If passed, we could see the effects of it here in Utah.

Shawn Martini, the spokesman for the issue committee, Colorado’s Protecting Wildlife, said that wolves that enter Colorado don’t normally stay long.

“Wolves have a remarkably large range and there's no reason to think that they would just stay in Colorado, they very easily go over into Utah that, you know, wildlife species don't abide themselves by political boundaries," said Martini. "It doesn't matter what state they're in the species is recovering and doing well, where they're currently existing. I don't know why a political subdivision has to dictate where a species is going to live.”

Scientists and state wildlife agencies in Colorado said they do not have the proper environment to sustain wolves in their state. If Colorado citizens were to vote on releasing a pack, Martini said in theory, conversations would be had between officials in both states.

“They could put together sort of a memorandum of understanding between Utah's Natural Resources managers and Colorado's Natural Resources managers. There may be some sort of a compact they could put together. But because the current authority in this issue with these issues, being the state wildlife agencies have said, it's not a good idea. None of those conversations are being had,” said Martini. 

On average, wolves can roam up to 12 miles a day.