Posted: Sep 10, 2012 9:36 AM by Evan Weborg - MTN News
Updated: Sep 10, 2012 10:29 AM
HELENA- It will be legal to trap wolves in Montana in a matter of months.
But, before the first wolf is caught the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks is making sure trappers have all the necessary information to operate ethical trap lines.
The word making history was loud and clear Saturday as local fur bearers attended the first ever Wolf Trapper Education Course.
"We might teach wolf trapper education to over 2,000 people in Montana and classes are being held all over this state," FWP Wildlife Management Section Chief George Pauley said.
Montana set a wolf quota of 220 for harvest last season, but only 166 were actually removed. So getting wolf numbers down to where FWP biologist would like now requires next step in trapping.
"This pretty much follow in line with what the department incremental approach to adding opportunity to take wolves. Certainty snares and other opportunities will be looked at down the road," Pauley explained.
Trapping alone is a controversial topic, and now Montana is adding wolves into the mix, so this class is intended for those to learn how to do this the right way"
"We are combining those we are putting those two things together wolves and trapping," wolf trapping experts Jack Whitman said.
FWP requires fur bearers to follow the 48 hour trap check rule and ethically using the right equipment that will not cause injury to the animals.
"This is so near and dear to my heart and I want to see it work, I want to see it done right, bring those ethical reminders back to the forefront of these trappers they are going to be the show and it is up to them whiter this works or not," Whitman commented.
He added that fur bearers cannot expect to attend the class and immediately be great at trapping. It will take time but everything comes down to keeping and maintaining ethical standards in order for the trapping of wolves to continue in Montana for seasons to come.
The wolf trapping season in Montana starts on December 15th.