California Wolf Center Advocates for Responsible Ranchers


Once again, the California Wolf Center demonstrates their dedication to the return of wolves in their state, this time by endorsing the products of a Siskiyou county ranch.

The aptly named Mount Shasta Wild is a ranch located in the foothills of Mount Shasta. Aware that the Shasta pack would likely inhabit the same area that their cattle graze, the family operation of Mount Shasta Wild began working closely with California Wolf Center’s Working Circle Proactive Stewardship program, comprised of biologists and ranchers who align themselves with livestock producers to find ways to prevent problems between wolves and livestock. The result of this cooperative effort has resulted in a safer environment for wolves in California as well as for the cattle of Mount Shasta Wild ranch. It has also culminated in the Wolf Center’s first official endorsement of a livestock producer.

The website of Mount Shasta Wild tells that the family has developed a range steward program to increase human presence among their herds. There is also an interesting section on how the type of cattle they run are a good fit for the rugged environment of Mount Shasta, as well as a hardy animal that can stand up to the apex predators that are returning to the area. If you are interested, you’ll find a link to order the endorsed beef.


California Wolf Center sent out this press release on June 21, 2017:



California Wolf Center Endorsed Beef

Making a difference for wolves, livestock and people

Wolf conservation nonprofit, California Wolf Center, formally endorses the beef of Siskiyou County ranch, Mt. Shasta Wild!

In line with their mission, California Wolf Center has become an advocate for ranchers who are the conscious stewards of open space where wildlife, including wolves, can live – providing benefits to the land and wildlife through their grazing practices while protecting it from development.

Mt. Shasta Wild is one of the first Northern California livestock producers to participate in the Working Circle Proactive Stewardship program, founded by California Wolf Center in 2016. The Working Circle Proactive Stewardship (WCPS) is a scientifically based, socially acceptable approach to wolf-livestock conflict that provides real and practical solutions. The goal is to empower ranchers to manage the issue themselves without continued reliance on, or undue interference from, outside groups or government agencies.

Mt. Shasta Wild in mutual cooperation with California Wolf Center is forwarding the efforts of the WCPS tackling wolf-livestock conflict in an unprecedented way. By merging ranchers knowledge of the land, their grazing experience, and stockmanship practices with the science of wolf biology and behavior, not only can producers successfully work around predators, but further benefit economically and in efficacy. In addition the WCPS program works to bridge the gap of understanding between urban and rural communities who have historically been at odds over wolf recovery. This comprehensive model has the real potential to help neutralize the polarizing debate that has hindered peaceful wolf recovery and ranchers ability to thrive. A win-win for livestock, wolves and people.

As part of the WCPS program, Mt. Shasta Wild employs an inaugural Range Steward™ on their grazing area sponsored by the California Wolf Center. Range Stewards™ are comprehensively trained “range riders” with an in-depth understanding of progressive stockmanship and grazing practices, livestock husbandry, the diverse local landscapes, wolf biology and ecology, prey travel and behavior, and wildlife tracking. This holistic approach of range stewardship, not only provides a critical interface between livestock and predators, but through low-stress stockmanship, husbandry, and natural predator defense practices, the Stewards set up a scenario for significantly reducing vulnerability in cattle even without the continued presence of humans.

The endorsement of beef creates a tangible way for consumers who support wolves to also support those ranchers who are taking pro-active steps that not only protect their cattle but will help to ensure long-term successful wolf recovery.

“It’s easy for those who live in urban places to be excited about the wolf” said Karin Vardaman, Director of Northern California for California Wolf Center, “but in order for wolf recovery to be successful, you must consider those that will potentially be impacted by the return of this top predator; it is our responsibility to support those who are the true stewards of the land where wolves will reside.”

California Wolf Center Endorsed Beef provides an opportunity for those who live in cities to enter into the reality of wolf recovery and share in the cost of what it means to have a predator on the landscape. Those who want wolf recovery need to be engaged with those communities hosting this top predator and support them as they implement strategies to keep their livestock, livelihood and culture unscathed. While wolves are responsible for less than 1% of overall livestock loss, they can have a detrimental impact on small family ranchers like Mt. Shasta Wild – a fifth generation Siskiyou County ranching family.

“This beef is an amazing way to bridge the gap between urban consumers and rural communities stewarding our open space. I am excited to support Mt Shasta Wild, as it is an operation performing in line with my values: stewardship, low-stress stockmanship and proactive measures to address wolf-livestock conflict” said Christina Souto, California Wolf Center’s Director of Marketing and Communications.

Currently California Wolf Center Endorsed Beef can be found in farmers markets, we are currently looking to expand places where this beef can be purchased and expand the number of participating livestock producers.

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About California Wolf Center

The California Wolf Center is dedicated to the recovery of wolves in the wildlands they once roamed. We envision a landscape where wolves thrive in healthy ecosystems and wolves and people successfully coexist. We believe in the value of working landscapes and the need to preserve and support ranching in California and beyond.

For questions regarding the Working Circle Proactive Stewardship program, please contact us at:

Endorsed Beef


Journey: The Amazing Story of OR-7, the Oregon Wolf that Made History is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Powell’s and Inkwater Press




2 thoughts on “California Wolf Center Advocates for Responsible Ranchers

  1. I am excited to follow the work being done by the California Wolf Center. Having an approach that works for ranchers, livestock & wolves is well overdue and I am anxious to find out more about how this process works so that all parties thrive.


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