“We are concerned about recent killings of wolves in this region,” John Heil, deputy assistant regional director of external affairs for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), told local news.
Conflict between wolves and people isn't very unusual, since ranchers often graze cattle on public lands. When cattle get too close to wolf territory, wolves see an easy meal, and ranchers lose livestock.
In some places — including parts of Oregon where the wolves aren't considered threatened — the state can order the killing of wolves in retaliation for such losses. "State-sanctioned killing is more likely to increase poaching than reduce it," Maggie Howell, executive director of the Wolf Conservation Center (WCC), told The Dodo recently.