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Idaho to Stop Wolf Management under ESA
The ongoing saga how to manage the Northern Rocky Mountain wolf population continues.
Congress is introducing numerous bills to remove Endangered Species Act (ESA) protections from the wolves. Now, the Governor of Idaho has ordered state wildlife officials to stop managing the wolves under the ESA.
Gov. C.L “Butch” Otter informed Department of Interior Secretary Ken Salazar that Idaho did not want sportsmen dollars to be used enforcing the ESA when the state is not allowed to manage them under its own authority.
The decision means that Idaho wildlife officials will not be required to investigate when wolves are killed. There is also no clear alternative in Idaho for managing the wolves in the absence of the state officials.
Meanwhile, Montana officials have stated that they are not following Idaho’s lead and will continue to use state dollars to manage wolves.
Idaho and Montana previously signed wolf management agreements with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Those agreements gave them the authority to manage wolves while the Service was considering removing them from ESA protection.