Picture of Echo, the Grand Canyon Wolf
It's what we feared the most. Echo, the wandering wolf who became a worldwide sensation after showing up at the Grand Canyon this fall, has likely been gunned down in Utah.
Please help us stop this slaughter with a contribution to our Wolf Defense Fund.
Here's what we know: State wildlife officials have confirmed that a 3-year-old female wolf with a collar from Wyoming was shot Sunday night by a hunter outside Beaver, Utah -- about 150 miles north of the Grand Canyon. Echo is the only Northern Rockies gray wolf that has been confirmed this far south, and DNA evidence will most likely show that she's the victim.
Once again we have to mourn a dead wolf. Once again we see this same horrific pattern. It's normal for younger wolves to leave their pack and set off looking for a new mate and new territory. But again and again -- in Colorado and Iowa, in Washington and now Utah -- these wolves have been gunned down in horrific cases of malice and mistaken identity.
Smart as they are, wolves don't read border signs, and they can't tell an ignorant human with a rifle that they aren't coyotes. The result is another dead wolf to add to the 640-plus already killed this year by guns, traps and poisons.
The wolf haters, no doubt, are delighted with the latest killing and are determined to keep this bloody campaign going. They have influential friends like Utah's own Congressman Rob Bishop, the powerful new head of the House Natural Resources Committee, who has vowed to end protection for wolves from coast to coast -- making what happened near Beaver neither illegal nor rare. The government of Utah has even spent $800,000 on lobbyists to strip protection from wolves so they can be freely killed in the state. They don't want to learn to live peacefully with wolves. They want to destroy them.
This is why we have our Wolf Defense Fund, and it's why the Center's lawyers, scientists and activists are in court, Congress and the streets every day fighting for wolves. We also have a generous wolf lover who has agreed to triple any donations to the Wolf Defense Fund with a 2-to-1 match. Please support our work to save wolves from those who want to destroy them.
There are plenty of other wolves out there that need our help. Sadly there will only be one Echo, the first wolf to hear her howls ring through the Grand Canyon in more than 70 years. If she has indeed been gunned down, we won't forget her, and our response to her death -- and to the death of any other -- is to work like hell so it never happens again. All wolves deserve to the chance to to roam freely and survive.
Help us see that they do.
For the wolves,