Feds Will Try Again to Delist Wolves

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will try again to remove gray wolves from the endangered species list in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The USFWS has tried three other times to return wolves to state and tribal management, only to be stymied in court.

The Duluth News Tribune has the story HERE. You can read the USFWS media release on the matter HERE.

In its announcement yesterday, the USFWS found that four petitions for removing Endangered Species Act protections from wolves “contain substantial information indicating that delisting may be warranted.” The agency stressed, however, that its action “does not mean that the Service has decided it is appropriate to remove federal protection under the ESA for gray wolves in these states.”

The four petitions to remove ESA protection from the gray wolf in the states of Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin were submitted by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, Sportsmen’s Alliance, and Safari Club International with the National Rifle Association.

As the News Tribune also reports, wolves in the Great Lakes region may be composed of two separate species — eastern and gray wolves. It is unclear whether the species will be given separate biological and legal status, or whether the distinction could delay management decisions.

An estimated 3,200 wolves reside in Minnesota with another 700 each roaming in Wisconsin and Upper Michigan.

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