Wyoming Wolves Set for Delisting

After nearly a decade advocating for delisting of wolves in the West, SCI is pleased that Wyoming wolves will join Idaho and Montana’s wolves as delisted.  The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) has announced that on, September 30, 2012, wolves in Wyoming will be removed from the federal endangered species list.  The FWS has approved Wyoming’s management plan to maintain 150 wolves and 15 breeding pairs within the state.  The state will manage wolves in the northwest portion of Wyoming, home of the vast majority of the state’s wolf population, as trophy game animals. Approximately, ten percent of the Wyoming’s wolf population lives outside the Wyoming’s Trophy Area and these wolves will be designated as predators.  Wyoming has authorized a harvest of 52 wolves in the Trophy Area, beginning on October 1, 2012.  No wolf hunting will be permitted in Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park, and in 2012 hunting will also be prohibited in John D. Rockefeller Jr. Memorial Parkway, the National Elk Refuge, and the Wind River Reservation.  The delisting will likely be tested in federal court as groups like Earthjustice and Defenders of Wildlife have already announced that they plan to file a legal challenge.  SCI will monitor the delisting and the legal actions, and will consider joining litigation to defend the return of Wyoming’s wolves to state management.


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