Gray wolf taken off Endangered Species list
Star Journal Report
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has announced the gray wolf has been removed from the list of federally endangered species, saying the population has been successfully recovered more than 45 years after first being listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
According to the Fish and Wildlife Service, state and tribal wildlife management agency professionals will take over responsibility for the management and protection of the gray wolf.
“Today’s action reflects the Trump Administration’s continued commitment to species conservation based on the parameters of the law and the best scientific and commercial data available,” said Secretary of the Interior David L. Bernhardt. “After more than 45 years as a listed species, the gray wolf has exceeded all conservation goals for recovery. Today’s announcement simply reflects the determination that this species is neither a threatened nor endangered species based on the specific factors Congress has laid out in the law.”
In a response from the Great Lakes Indian Fish & Wildlife Commission (GLIFWC), Executive Administrator Michael J. Isham, Jr. expressed disappointment in the decision.
“GLIFWC member tribes have made it clear to Federal and State agencies that they are opposed to delisting ma’iingan (Ojibwe for wolf) and have advocated for high levels of protection of our relative. Furthermore, we remind the Department of the Interior that the trust responsibility to the tribes in the realm of ma’iingan stewardship does not cease with delisting, but rather increases the need for their active involvement in protecting tribal interests.”
Isham added that “The recovery of [the wolf] populations in ceded territories is a tremendous example of ecological and cultural restoration that must be preserved for the benefit of future generations.”
State Representative Rob Swearingen of Rhinelander responded by stating that the gray wolf no longer meets the definition of a threatened or endangered species.
“Today the wolf population is thriving and it is reasonable to conclude it will continue to do so in the future,” Swearingen stated in a press release. “The decision made to de-list the gray wolf on the federal level will now restore management of all gray wolves back to the rightful hands of state and tribal leaders who have been instrumental to the species recovery.”
Visit the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service website for more information on the decision.