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Watch Our Feather-Ruffling Film, "The Profanity Peak Pack: Set Up & Sold Out"

This film on Washington State's wolf slaughter has ruffled more than a few feathers. It revealed the surprising players and policies that set up an unjust and unnecessary killing of wolves on pristine, public forest land in 2016. The slaughter resumed on additional packs from 2017-2020, putting Washington on a path to earn a reputation like its neighboring states, which have killed thousands of wolves since federal protections were removed in 2011. We continue to ask: Is there no place wolves can live in peace?

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Why Washington State Must Stop Valuing Cows over Wolves

Washington has over 1,000,000 cows and barely 100 wolves. Yet wolves increasingly appear to have no place to live in peace, not even pristine forested public land, as the state kicked into high gear in 2016, killing more and more wolves under the guise of protecting cattle. Killing wolves causes social disruption of the pack, often leads to more attacks on cattle, and gives wolves no way to perform their vital role as apex predators in our ecosystems. Science shows that coexistence is far more advisable.

We address Washington's (and our country's) unjust, counterproductive and cruel approach in our new short film, "The Profanity Peak Pack: Set Up & Sold Out." It exposes how an irresponsible rancher in Washington State set up a pack of wolves living on public land in a remote forest to attack his cattle. The ranching family involved has done this before, and since.

The film also addresses the bigger picture, which is one in which ranchers destroy our public lands with livestock grazing while taxpayers help them externalize their business costs and fund the killing of wolves to boot. The film also exposes how a number of prominent wildlife advocacy groups involved refused to speak out against the killing of wolves and became party to the ongoing slaughter.

Scientists & Environmentalists Applaud Film for Exposing Wolf "Management" Run Amok, Valuing Cows over Wolves

"Viewing Predator Defense’s latest film, The Profanity Peak Pack: Set Up & Sold Out, is a gut-wrenching experience. At one level, the film reveals the wider political and scientific malpractice of lethal wolf management. Animated by the blatant immorality of victimizing wolves for the benefit of corporate agriculture, it has obvious resonance for the ongoing slaughter of wolves in North America and the world.

"At another level, this documentary also exposes the moral shame that lies at the heart of traditional conservation—the often blind reliance on killing wildlife. Lethal 'management' is no substitute for developing a just and sustainable way of human life that respects the lives of other animals. The ideology that drives our troubled relationship with wolves and other animals is 'human exceptionalism'...[which] both science and ethics have debunked."

"This film provides an opportunity to see not only the mendacity of what we do to wolves, but the twisted values that justify that maliciousness. Contesting those values is indispensable to ending this travesty. So too is articulating new values for coexisting with wolves and the wild world. In sharing this documentary, Predator Defense is helping us do both." MORE

Ethicist & Social Scientist, Marsh Institute of Clark Univ. & NewKnowledge, a think tank
LEGAL DISCLAIMER: Mr. Lynn's views are his own,
and do not represent those of other individuals or institutions.

"I have never seen a situation in which the destruction of a wolf pack could be construed as a professional wildlife management decision following wolf predation on a public land cattle allotment without range riders and other protective actions, not to speak of the release of cattle on a known wolf pack home range. The decisions by the rancher/owner of the cattle and the state wildlife agency are irresponsible, bordering on the outrageous in terms of common sense, as the film points out. The pack was lured by placement of cattle, which displaced the elk food base of the wolves, so the wolves, victimized once, are then destroyed becoming victims a second time." MORE

Senior Scientist Emeritus, Dept. of Wildland Resources, Utah State Univ.

"As a predator ecologist who has studied large predators for over 35 years, I find the information presented in the film to be highly disturbing...I have seen the enthusiasm and hope of re-establishing ecological order across the West that the wolves offered, become perverted by lies and ignorance, often by the very organizations and agencies designated...to protect wildlife, into another war on wolves that drove them to extinction in the first place.

"Why should one person, the rancher in this case, have more say over what happens on public land—land owned by all of us—than the other 300 million people in the U.S., or even the 7 million citizens of Washington? Why should we run whole ecosystems for one person or one industry? It is a crime ecologically and it does not even make sense economically. The people of Washington spent more to remove the wolves than that rancher’s whole calf crop was worth!" MORE

Predator Ecologist & author of landmark study, "The Landscape of Fear"

"With this important film, Predator Defense brings much-needed transparency to an ugly but avoidable reality, where the lack of science and ethics in state government oversight of our at-risk wildlife have become epidemic. The precedent set by the killing of these endangered icons—despite public outcry—is being closely watched by the wildlife-management interface, potentially dooming entire populations to be wiped out based on the whim of private interests seeking to exploit public lands."

"As a biologist who has always advocated for compassionate conservation I am sensitive to the risk Predator Defense takes in their decision to unabashedly shed light on a broken system. My hope is that others will be inspired to action by their courage in standing up for the precious wildlife that are the natural heritage of all Americans; it will take no less in this modern era to protect them from being wiped out." MORE

Conservation Biologist & Executive Director of Wild Zone Conservation League

"In my 30 years as a scientist, I have been witness to a host of ethical breaches in both government and academia. But the actions of those involved in the decision to destroy the Profanity Peak Wolf Pack are one of the most, if not the most, egregious ethical violations I have ever encountered. I find it scientifically and morally untenable that four non-profit organizations, whose reputations and funding are based on the claim that they support wildlife conservation and animal protection, were party to the “removal”—or in unveiled terms, slaughter—of the Profanity Peak Wolf Pack." MORE

Founder & Director, The Kerulos Center

"Heart-felt applause to Brooks Fahy of Predator Defense for having the courage to produce this incisive and powerful documentary. The destruction of the Profanity Peak wolf pack is tragically symptomatic of what is wrong with American wildlife conservation. It is unjustifiable to set out salt licks to attract cattle a mere 200 yards from wolf dens, or to use aerial gunning, especially in a forested area where most of the ground can't even be seen from the air. These scenarios are morally wrong, biologically wrong and financially wrong. The moral and biological inconsistencies are shockingly obvious, so a glimpse at the financial shortcomings might also evoke some concern. The film reports over $135,000 of taxpayer money was spent to kill seven wolves on public land that was being grazed by a few hundred cattle. The federal government collects less than $8 per steer per four-month grazing season in this region. So the government would have had to collect fees from grazing rights for about 17,000 cattle just to break even for the aerial killing. The point is, our government is wasting our money to kill our wolves on our land so it can subsidize cattle ranchers. Get the livestock off public land. Leave the wolves alone. Let Nature be her own mistress."

Willdlife Consultant, Animal Welfare Institute
Former wolf researcher & 23-year member of INTERPOL's wildlife crime unit

"At their best, universities should protect academic freedom. This is the gold standard for our institutions of higher learning. Universities, at their worst, that suppress the expression of academic research, only display a lump of coal (or better yet, manure) as their standard. I strongly believe that the latter rating can be attached to Washington State University (WSU) in its blatant threats of disciplinary action, reprimands, shuns, attacks of credibility, and restrictions on research funding directed at Dr. Robert Wielgus, Professor and head of WSU's Large Carnivore Lab.

Dr. Wielgus has been a respected leading researcher in the field of large apex carnivore interactions with livestock. As a national expert on livestock depredation by wolves (and cougars), he publicly released research revealing that the blame of the eradication of the Profanity Peak wolf pack lay mainly with a single rancher’s failure to follow adequate animal husbandry techniques to prevent depredation of his cattle by this pack, and by refusing to cooperate with the WA Dept. of Fish & Wildlife and the expertise of the Lab in implementing measures to avoid wolf/ livestock confrontations.

"The Profanity Peak wolf pack slaughter is egregious enough, but now another slaughter has taken place. This is imbued by suppression of research results that happen to challenge livestock owners’ and corporations’ control of our natural resources (i.e. wildlife). In my opinion this is immoral and unethical. WSU has lost my respect and support." MORE

30-year veterinary doctor & WSU graduate

"A truthful, thoughtful, and poignant film...explaining how wolves are caught between a rock and a hard place on public lands. Rugged wilderness, multiple use, U.S. Forest Service public lands favor domestic livestock (without proper husbandry practices) over native wildlife. If wolves cannot live here without being persecuted, then where? I recommend this film for all citizens interested in wolves, livestock, and enlightened use of our public lands."

Specialist in large carnivore/human conflicts with 35 published scientific papers &
35 years of experience in large carnivore research
Read about Dr. Weilgus' academic freedom fight

"The decision by Washington State’s Dept. of Fish and Wildlife to slaughter an entire pack of endangered wolves on public land in defense of subsidized welfare grazing is an outrage and a throwback to the century before when we shot all wolves and bears on sight. Please watch this film and take action to stop the killing."

Vietnam veteran, naturalist, outdoorsman, author, and real-life model for
Edward Abbey’s 'George Washington Hayduke' in "The Monkey Wrench Gang"

"This film exposes the appeasement of public lands ranchers, who are heavily subsidized to despoil and befoul the federal public lands with their bovine bulldozers and meadow maggots. It costs more to feed a house cat than to graze a cow on public lands. Subsidizing ranchers in taxpayer money is bad enough, but not also in dead wolves. The current system of wolf conservation in the American West is broken. A practical solution is to equitably end the livestock conflict by purchasing grazing rights on private lands and compensating public lands grazing permittees for relinquishing their grazing permits on federal public lands. Both wolves and taxpayers would howl in delight."

Author, advocate and agitator on behalf of the wild; "czar" of The Larch Company,
an environmental consulting firm named after a beautiful tree that thrives on scorched earth

"As we careen towards the sixth great extinction of wildlife across the globe, we carry a strong and vital symbol in America of our societies continued madness towards wildlife—the Gray Wolf. With this film (Predator Defense) has broken down the green wall of silence, to expose not only the livestock industry's hunger to kill wolves, but most importantly, opened the public’s eyes to the real villain in this continued malpractice of our wildlife—the conservation community!"

"Many groups...continue to perpetuate the myth that we can have livestock and wolves co-existing on public lands. This “have it all” mentality, is allowing a new generation of slaughter and misunderstanding of wolves in the wild to take hold. This form of conservation driven extinction and torture, must be stopped. To do so, will require the conservation community to have the courage and discipline to speak in one unified voice for wolves, while aggressively moving to Rewild our public lands from their current cow pasture status, to the true repositories for wildlife they have always been....We do not need more wildlife management; rather we need only true human management, which puts wildlife and their survival before the welfare that the livestock industry steals from our societal trough."

"This film is prophetic and vital, its timing crucial. Director Brooks Fahy's gift is to bring you along and demand honesty and love in the long-term recovery of a species that has been trapped, tortured and maligned by the ignorance of a handful that continue to control our public lands.  For gray wolves to survive and prosper we must learn from this film and turn our raw emotion into action." MORE

Executive Director, Bold Visions Conservation

“Watching The Profanity Peak Pack: Set Up and Sold Out is an eye-opening and infuriating experience about how a wild wolf pack living on federal public land was doomed by politics and ranching. If we are going to kill wolves on public land—lands that all American tax dollars support—where should they live undisturbed from people? I find the hypocrisy of the rancher involved palpable. Ranchers are typically an independent and highly conservative group, but he is essentially living on multiple forms of welfare just to run his cattle ranch. Unfortunately, this scene could take place in virtually any part of America, since state wildlife agencies cater to killing carnivores, even in more progressive states where the majority of its electorate is against such practices. The system is so obviously rigged for carnivores in America, as I have had similar experiences of non-accountability, obstruction, and cherry-picked trumped up charges in my home state of Massachusetts. This video will sicken and anger you and hopefully spur social and regulatory changes where a more diversified stakeholder group gets to meaningfully participate and have a voice in carnivore conservation and management in the United States.”

Founder, Eastern Coyote/Coywolf Research

"Some conservation organizations have chosen to accommodate welfare ranchers and their allies in certifying the wholesale killing of wolves and extermination of packs as a viable, defensible strategy to protect ranchers' ethically untenable destructive livestock grazing on public lands. This lethal strategy is unsupported by science, amounting to “revenge” against wolves. It will lead to wolves living as constantly persecuted populations subject to incessant aerial gunning, hunting and trapping—all to benefit a small community of ranchers adhering to the ruthless, short-sighted and selfish range practices...I hope this excellent film can be shown widely. It forcefully, accurately and clearly describes current wolf issues...and the more often I watch it the more angry I become. We should all share this anger." MORE

WALLY SYKES, Wildlife Advocate
Member, Wallowa County Wolf Compensation Committee
Co-founder, Northeast Oregon Ecosystems

Science Shows that Coexistence with Wolves Is Far More Advisable

Decades of scientific research show that killing wolves is counter-productive and that co-existence would be a much more beneficial approach. Here are just a few research papers for starters:

Scientists released new data in 2017 supporting a paradigm shift from lethal control of predators to coexistence via nonlethal deterrents. Read press release. Their findings were published in a special feature called "Lethal Control of Predators" in the Journal of Mammology and included the following six papers:

Additional articles and peer-reviewed papers by well-known biologists/ecologists, activists and philosophers are available here.

Media Coverage of Wolf Slaughter in Washington State

Academic Freedom Fight: WSU Suppresses Professor and His Scientific Research on Wolves

An academic freedom fight broke out during Washington State's sell out of the Profanity Peak wolf pack. At the center of the storm was WSU professor Robert Wielgus, Ph.D., the large carnivore specialist whose research blew the case wide open. Dr. Wielgus was silenced and censured by WSU and lost his research funding. He was subjected to baseless investigations and public denunciations, which resulted in the halting of large carnivore research and wolf/livestock interaction research at WSU and across Washington. Here are highlights of the media coverage that ensued:

How You Can Help

  • You can help us expose and end the wrongful war on wolves by sharing our film, "The Profanity Peak Pack: Set Up & Sold Out," with everyone you know who cares about wolves, wildlife and public lands.
  • Send WA Governor Jay Inslee an e-message or call him at 360-902-4111 and ask him to use his influence to stop all killing of wolves on public lands. Let him know the majority are against the killing, as well as public lands “welfare ranching,” that killing wolves only increases attacks on livestock, and that Washington’s policies need to change accordingly. Telling him in your own words what you think makes a bigger impact.
  • Rain fire on the WA Dept. of Fish & Wildlife (WDFW) and tell them why you are against them slaughtering any more of Washington's approx. 100 wolves just so the state's million+ cows can live til their own slaughter date (plus details in previous bullet). Contact: Donny Martorello, Wolf Program Coordinator, 360-902-2521, AND Jim Unsworth, Director, 360-902-2200, director@dfw.wa.gov. Please also submit a public comment to the WDFW wolf program via wildthing@dfw.wa.gov or 360-902-2515.
  • Follow us on Facebook and Twitter and share our posts.
  • Support our work for wolves and vital native predators. Your tax-deductible contribution will help us effectively promote this film and all our work to change America's hearts and minds to create a better world for wildlife.