BLAINE COUNTY -- This year Idaho will spend $400,000 to reduce its wolf population.
A group of conservationists in Blaine County believe they have the non-lethal answer to the issue that will satisfy ranchers and wildlife advocates.
About 20 people gathered Tuesday to learn methods like fladdry -- non lethal ways to deal with wolves.
With sheep nearby, the group learns ways to protect livestock without killing one of their predators.
Rancher Brian Bean is sharing the tools he's says are working to keep wolves away from herds, like trackers to know exactly where the packs are located, blow horns and lights to keep wolves away, and even start guns.
I think it's a combination of all these measures, and human presence is really important, the turbo fladdry is a really good tool, said Bean.
The group learned how to put up the fladdry -- a fence like device with flags aimed at protecting livestock.
Suzanne Stone with Defenders of Wildlife says these measures are not only working, they are cheaper and easier and protect both the wolves and livestock.
We have had sheep and wolves in the same drainage for up to a month at a time with no loss of sheep or wolves because these methods are working, said Stone.
In fact, she says in six years the Wood River Wolf Project Area has seen more than 100,000 sheep, and only 30 have been killed by wolves.
In the western U.S. this is one of the largest projects of this nature, people coming from all over the world to look at what we are doing on the ground here, said Stone.
People like former rancher Kurt Holtzen from Montana.
It's one of the leading projects, one of the only with a seven-year history of very little loss, so it's been working, working good for a long time, so it's the place to come and see how they're doing it, said Holtzen.
The Defenders of Wildlife say their methods prove it s time to move away from the controversy and focus on a solution.
Because this issue is so polarizing in Idaho, people stay in their camps and fight with each other and that's really unnecessary. We are finding out that these non-lethal tools are far more effective at keeping wolves away from livestock than traditionally going out and killing them, said Stone.
This is the 7th year of the Wood River Wolf Project. They say it's successful and hope it continues.