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Alaska Plans to Suspend Largest State-Sponsored Aerial Wolf-Killing Program

July 11, 2017 | wolf / alaska / Hunting & Wildlife Management

We’re glad to hear the news that Alaska has announced plans to suspend its largest wolf “control” program after the 2017-2018 season. Although we believe this cruel and pointless hunting program should be ended immediately, we’re relieved that the killing of wolves will not continue in the years ahead. 

The long running Upper Yukon Tanana wolf control effort was aimed at increasing caribou numbers for hunters by reducing the number of wolves on the caribou herd’s calving grounds, but Alaska Department of Fish and Game regional supervisor Darren Bruning said recent year’s field research shows wolves are not the limiting factor and that climate change is actually one of the key factors.

This was an Alaskan Board of Game (BoG) driven program, where millions of state dollars were spent since 2004— and included the deliberate killing of an entire family of Yukon-Charley National Park radio-collared wolves. From the beginning, this scandalous wolf-killing program has been opposed by Friends of Animals, the late Dr. Gordon Haber, other eminent wildlife biologists and citizens of Alaska.

Protecting Alaska’s gray wolves is an issue that is very near and dear to our hearts. Friends of Animals took on  Alaska’s wolf hunters when it launched a successful tourism boycott of Alaska in 1992. After 53 howl-ins in 51 cities across the United States, Gov. Walter Hickel cancelled a horrible planned wolf control program. 

When Tony Knowles became governor in 1994 and replaced Hickel, Alaska saw eight years of progressive changes for wolves. Learn more about our efforts for Alaska’s wolves and for animals worldwide in our recent Action Line magazine article here.


This decision is long overdue. The state has killed thousands of wolves and wasted millions of dollars.

SJ69 should be abolished grizzly and wolves should be left alone in Alaska

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