even odds more wolves are going to be shot illegally this fall than were taken with tags last fall.....when these dang things were shoved down our throats we were told the target population for the entire population in MT, ID and WY was gonna be under 400 wolves and then controls would start in the form of a hunting season....now we are at 4 times what the biologists in the 90's told us the ecosystem could handle and we are not allowed to control the dang things.....elk and moose numbers have dropped to the point hunting can not be allowed in alot of areas......chances of me taking a moose in my life time in my home state have gone to dang near impossible odds from one every 7-10 years just 5 years ago.....http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-...05-725355.html
US Judge Orders Protection For Rocky Mountain Gray Wolf
SAN FRANCISCO (Dow Jones)--A federal judge on Thursday restored Endangered Species Act protections to gray wolves in Montana and Idaho, reversing a government decision to remove the protections.
U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy concluded that the government's decision to remove, or "delist" gray wolves in Montana and Idaho from protection violated the ESA because the law requires such decisions to be made about an entire species, not a subset of a species.
In April 2009, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service removed ESA protection for northern Rocky Mountain gray wolves in Montana and Idaho, but not Wyoming.
"The plain language of the ESA does not allow the agency to divide a [species] into a smaller taxonomy," the judge ruled.
The Interior Department's assistant secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks, Tom Strickland, said the agency would work with the three states as well as tribes, environmental groups, ranchers and other landowners "to manage wolves and ensure the species continues to thrive and coexist with livestock, other wildlife populations, and people.
"Today's ruling means that until Wyoming brings its wolf management program into alignment with those of Idaho and Montana, the wolf will remain under the protection of the Endangered Species Act throughout the northern Rocky Mountains," Strickland said.
The northern Rocky Mountain gray wolf was listed as endangered under the ESA in 1974. In later years the government developed a recovery plan and reintroduced populations of gray wolves into central Idaho and Yellowstone National Park.
In April 2009, the Fish & Wildlife Service concluded that with more than 1,500 wolves, the species was thriving and that state laws in Montana and Idaho were likely to support the wolves' continued success. However, the agency determined that gray wolves in Wyoming remained in danger of extinction because of inadequate regulation.
Defenders of Wildlife, the Greater Yellowstone Coalition and other wildlife advocates sued the federal government after the 2009 decision, arguing that the government can't arbitrarily choose which animals should be protected and where.
The decision puts an end to wolf hunts in Montana and Idaho planned for this fall.
-By Cassandra Sweet, Dow Jones Newswires; 415-439-6468; cassandra.sweetdowjones.com
and before you eco freaks start trying to quiote the fact that Montana's elk herds have grown....keep in mind is a big state with elk living from the Idaho to the North Dakota borders and the only herds that have grown are those where there are no wolves....most the herds in areas with wolves have dropped to 5 or 10% of their populations just 10 years ago.....
also these wolves are not in anyway endangered.....cross that imaginary line into Canada and they are hunted legally and not being wiped out....
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RMEF Calls on Congress to Reform Endangered Species Act
MISSOULA, Mont.—The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation is calling for immediate Congressional review and reform of the Endangered Species Act following a judge’s decision yesterday to reinstate full federal protection for gray wolves.
The Aug. 5 ruling means state wildlife agencies no longer have authority to manage skyrocketing wolf populations—even in areas where wolf predation is driving cow elk, moose and elk calf survival rates below thresholds needed to sustain herds for the future.
RMEF says the judge has opened a door for perhaps the greatest wildlife management disaster in America since the wanton destruction of bison herds over a century ago.
“When federal statutes and judges actually endorse the annihilation of big game herds, livestock, rural and sporting lifestyles—and possibly even compromise human safety—then clearly the Endangered Species Act as currently written has major flaws,” said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. “We have already begun contacting the Congressional delegations of Idaho, Montana and Wyoming to ask for an immediate review of this travesty—and reform of the legislation that enabled it.”
Allen pointed out an irony, if not an outright error, in the decision issued by U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy.
“Judge Molloy said wolves in the northern Rockies are a single population that cannot be segmented based on political boundaries. But he essentially did that very thing himself, because he considered only the wolf population within the U.S. There are 75,000-plus gray wolves across Canada, yet Judge Molloy stopped at the border and did not consider the entire Rocky Mountain population. The gray wolf is simply not an endangered species,” said Allen.
Animal rights groups who continue to litigate over wolves are “gaming the system for their own financial benefit,” he added, saying, “There are no elk in Iowa, but we are not suing folks to reintroduce them. This is simply a financial scam for the animal rights groups, and it’s all being paid for by the American taxpayer.”
Additionally, Allen urged the governors in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming to begin the process of formally implementing “the 10(j) rule” as provided within federal law. For all species reintroductions classified as a “nonessential, experimental population,” as is the case with gray wolves under the Endangered Species Act, the 10(j) rule allows states more flexibility to mitigate for unacceptable impacts on big game populations, livestock and domestic animals.