« Return to this article

Know the West

Wolf hazing legalized in Colorado

Colorado wildlife officials are planning for reintroduction. A wolf pack is complicating their efforts.


Want to catch up on big developments quickly? See more stories here.

In 2020, Coloradans voted for wolf reintroduction. But you can’t establish wolf packs unless you ensure their survival, and that requires human tolerance and landscape-wide protections. Scientists traced the Green River wildlife corridor from Wyoming to Colorado in order to understand the political and physical obstacles that wolves face, and the reasons why they haven’t repopulated the West on their own (“A Hostile Country,” September 2021).


It’s now legal to use rubber bullets, guard animals and more to defend Colorado livestock from wolves. Colorado Parks and Wildlife commissioners passed an emergency resolution allowing hazing in January, after a wolf pack from Wyoming killed cattle and rancher Carlos Atencio’s dog. Atencio remains wary of reintroduction. “If there was any sort of legal way we could put it to a revote,” he told The Colorado Sun, “or maybe the governor could put it on pause for now.”

Kylie Mohr is an editorial intern for High Country News writing from Montana. Email her at [email protected] or submit a letter to the editor. See our letters to the editor policy.