The letters to the editor page is one of the most widely read, influential parts of the newspaper. One letter from you can reach thousands of people and will also likely be read by decision-makers. Tips and talking points are below, but please write in your own words, from your own experience. Don’t try to include all the talking points in your letter.
- Science has repeatedly demonstrated that wolves are keystone carnivores who help to keep wildlife like elk and deer healthy and bring balance to the lands they inhabit. Wildlife biologists believe that Mexican wolves will improve the overall health of the Southwest and its rivers and streams — just as the return of gray wolves to Yellowstone has helped restore balance to its lands and waters.
- The USFWS should move forward with allowing new wolves to be released throughout the Blue Range. The Mexican gray wolf is the most endangered mammal in the U.S. with only about 75 in the wild. Additional wolves must be released into the wild now to increase the genetic health of the species. Numerous wolves are in captive breeding facilities around the country, prepared for, and awaiting, release.
- Scientific experts have long said that the Grand Canyon region, which extends from southern Utah to the Mogollon Rim, contains some of the last best places for wolves.
- Wolves once lived throughout Arizona and played a critical role in keeping the balance of nature in place. We need to restore this important animal that has been missing for too long.
- Mexican wolves have been on the ground in Arizona for 15 years, and are struggling because of artificial boundaries and political interference.
- Wolves need freedom from boundaries. Given room to roam, the wolves will establish themselves in suitable areas with adequate game. The problem with the USFWS proposal is not that it lets wolves roam in the wrong place (it doesn’t) but that it does not allow wolves to establish new packs and populations in additional areas that are essential to their recovery.
- Wolves will bring ecological and economic benefits to our region. We should focus on what is necessary to recover the species.
- Prominent wolf experts have advocated restoring wolves to their natural role in the Grand Canyon region for many years.
- The livestock industry has a responsibility to share public lands with native wildlife like wolves. According to the US Dept of Agriculture, in 2010 only .23% of cattle deaths and 4% of all sheep deaths were due to any type of predator, which includes a lot more than just wolves.There are many proven-effective methods for avoiding conflict.
Make sure you:
- Thank the paper for publishing this article.
- Include something about who you are and why you care: E.g. “I am mother, outdoors person, teacher, business owner, scientific, religious, etc.)
- Provide your name, address, phone number and address. The paper won’t publish these, but they want to know you are who you say you are.
- Submit letters (<250 words) here.
Please also submit comments on the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s proposal. Click here.