In May ’09 I blogged about the threats facing wolves in Greater Yellowstone, the Northern Rockies, and (famously) Alaska. This week, wolves gained a moderate victory, something I thought you might want to hear about. Here’s the press release from Defenders of Wildlife:
On August 5, 2010, a federal judge overturned a decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to remove gray wolves from the Endangered Species Act (ESA), paving the way for these critical predators to rebuild their numbers to ecologically sustainable levels. This ruling is the result of a lawsuit brought against the FWS in 2009 by Defenders of Wildlife and other conservation organizations….
After Defenders of Wildlife led efforts to restore the gray wolf population in the Northern Rockies in 1995, this great success was dealt a serious setback when Interior Secretary Ken Salazar approved a plan from the Bush administration era to delist gray wolves from the ESA. Once off the list, the wolves were quickly approved for hunting in Idaho and Montana, where more than 350 wolves—almost 20% of the total population—were killed in 2009….
One of the immediate impacts of the ruling is that the hunting seasons in Montana and Idaho, originally planned to begin this fall, will be canceled.
Good news if you’re a wolf — or someone who recognizes that wolves are an important part of the ecosystem.