Marj Perry’s Op-Ed makes a number of unfounded claims about the potential effects of wolves in Colorado (“Wolves + lots of people is not a recipe for success,” Sept. 5). One of her main points is that Colorado is riddled with highways and trails and the Western Slope is a crowded landscape. One need only look to the upper Midwest to see that wolves and people can and do get along at high densities of people, wolves, roads and trails. Some European nations, including Spain, Russia and Albania, all have higher densities of humans (more than seven times higher in Albania) with higher densities of wolves than are expected to occur in Western Colorado.
Perry also questions whether we should be concerned about the impact of wolves on Southwest Colorado elk populations. Most western Colorado elk management units are at or above Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s target level. And if you look north to Montana, Idaho and Wyoming, where wolves were restored beginning in 1995, you find that those states have more elk today than 1995, with robust populations of wolves.
Wolves, people and livestock can all get along. All wolves need is something to eat and human tolerance. We have plenty of the first, and we are honorable and moral enough to have plenty of the second.