Washington, D.C. – The Department of Interior and a majority of environmental groups who are suing the Fish and Wildlife Service over wolf management, plan to settle ongoing litigation, which could lead to delisting wolves from the Endangered Species Act. If the Fish and Wildlife Service is able to negotiate a management plan with Wyoming then it could also lead to delisting wolves in the Cowboy State and all of the northern Rocky Mountains.
U.S. Senators Mike Enzi and John Barrasso, both R-Wyo., want Wyoming to have equal footing in the delisting process.
Enzi was pleased the Department of Interior and some environmental groups, who have agreed not to file more lawsuits to block the proposal, acknowledged that the wolf is recovered in the Rocky Mountain Region.
“It appears some people at the Department of Interior and even some environmental activists in groups such as the Natural Resources Defense Council and Defenders of Wildlife have seen the light that has been shining brightly in their eyes for some time now. The wolf population has reached the goals set out before wolf introduction began. When the goals are met, it’s time to delist,” Enzi said.
Enzi cautioned that this announcement does not end the wolf saga and he pledged to continue his efforts to ensure the wolf is delisted in Wyoming.
“While lawsuits continue to work their way through the courts, I remain committed to a legislative solution to remove this predator from the endangered species list in Wyoming. This proposal signifies a desire to move in the right direction, by some of the right people, but the marathon hasn’t been won,” Enzi said.
Enzi and Barrasso sent a letter to Senate appropriators today encouraging them to work with the Wyoming senators to ensure that any wolf language in future spending bills includes delisting wolves in Wyoming.
“While we can appreciate that other states face a similar situation, we do not support the idea of delisting wolves in only part of the Rocky Mountain region,” the senators wrote. “We request you work with us to find language that delists wolves in all three impacted states.”