Isle Royale: National Park Service Announces Environmental Impact Statement

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Isle Royale: National Park Service Announces Environmental Impact Statement

Postby jimh » Sun Mar 18, 2018 9:12 am

Many readers of this forum have visited the U.S. National Park at Isle Royale in Lake Superior by transiting to the park in their own recreational boat. The isolated eco-system of Isle Royale includes two large mammals: the moose and the wolf. The wolf population has been in a steady decline for more than decade. There has been substantial debate concerning what efforts should be made to re-establish a viable population of wolves on the island. The U.S. National Park Service recently published their final Environmental Impact Statement to Address the Presence of Wolves. This document is described by the NPS as follows:

The final Environmental Impact Statement (plan/FEIS) evaluates whether and how to bring wolves to Isle Royale to function as the apex predator within a changing and dynamic island ecosystem. The NPS preferred alternative is Alternative B, which calls for the introduction of 20 to 30 wolves over a three-year period. The goal of this alternative is to provide an introduction of wolves that has the potential to become a self-sustaining population.

After a waiting period of at least 30 days, the NPS will concern a Record of Decision that documents the final decision and sets out a course of action for the project.

Here is a link to the document:
Isle Royale National Park Environmental Impact Statement to Address the Presence of Wolves

Executive Summary: alternative B is the preferred plan

Alternative B includes a limited introduction of wolves to the park over a 3-year time period. This alternative would provide an immediate introduction of a large enough number of wolves to establish a healthy population that functions as an apex predator throughout the 20-year planning period. After the third year, should an unforeseen event occur, such as disease or mass mortality, that impacts the wolf population and the objectives of the alternative are not being met due to this event, wolves may be supplemented for an additional 2 years. No wolves would be introduced after 5 years from date of initial introduction.