North Park is ground zero in Colorado’s wolf controversy. Ranchers want to know if anyone hears them.

It would be easier, many locals say, to “shoot, shovel and shut up” when wolves prey on their livestock, although getting caught shooting a protected species could mean a $100,000 fine and a year in jail. The Gittlesons, owners of the ranch where there have been recent depredations, though, said they are reporting every wolf sighting and attack to their local Colorado Parks and Wildlife agents, seeking government compensation for their dead cows, and asking for help to scare the pack away from the ranch. At the same time, they want the rest of Colorado to understand why they need lethal force to get rid of problem wolves.