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Gray Wolf no longer endangered?

Gray Wolf no longer endangered? 

Federal officials for The US Fish and Wildlife Service were apparently barking up the wrong tree when they decided that the gray wolf –which was declared an endangered species in 1975–should be removed from the list across the majority of the continental states.  An independent panel of peer reviewers, the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis at the University of California in Santa Barbara, issued a statement saying that “the USFWS’s earlier decisions were not well supported by the available science.”

An NCEAS panel member, Steven Courtney, stated that “The science used by the Fish and Wildlife Service concerning genetics and taxonomy of wolves” specifically used to decide to remove the gray wolf from the list “was preliminary and currently not the best available science.”  Additionally, they discovered further scientific evidence that is worthy of consideration before changing the listing status of said gray wolf.

gray wolf

Gray Wolf

Frank Davis, director of NCEAS, added: “An important part of NCEAS’s mission is supporting and advancing science relevant to decision-makers and on-the-ground conservation.”  He told the press: “We are glad that the USFWS sought our help, and we hope that the review process will help all parties moving forward.”

These findings make it all but impossible for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to not reevaluate their original proposal regarding the gray wolf.  NCEAS research also indicates they may have to further study what parts of the country are “suitable for the gray wolf.”  The federal government sponsored poisoning and trapping programs over the past 100 years and since 2011 it has been legal to hunt the gray wolf in the northern Rockies and Great Lakes.

Dan Ashe, USFWS Director, remarked in a statement that the peer review process is actually very important when evaluating the health of a species.  Furthermore, he reported: “We are incorporating the peer review report into the public record for the proposed rulemaking, and accordingly, reopening the public comment period to provide the public with the opportunity for input.”

Now the USFWS will hear additional “public commentary” concerning the gray wolf proposal starting on February 10.  Ashe noted the public will now have another 45 days to provide any additional information that may aid the agency in making a final decision regarding the gray wolf proposal.  Interested parties can read the peer-review and comment at www.fws.gov/home/wolfrecovery.

(Image courtesy of National Geographic)

About Will Phoenix

W. Scott Phoenix, B.A., B.S. was born in Hawaii, raised in Pennsylvania and resides in California. He has been a published writer since 1978. His work has appeared (under various names) in numerous places in print and online including Examiner.com. He is a single parent of three children and has also worked as an actor, singer and teacher. He has been employed by such publications as the Daily Collegian and the Los Angeles Times.
  • Dmgdriver

    So… The Grey Wolf is off the endangered list, but the large flocks of the intrusive Canada Goose is still on it?

    • Will Phoenix

      Hi Dmg!
      Well, the hope of those concerned about the gray wolf is that the new discussion being opened by the peer group’s findings will perhaps result in the wolf going back on the list. Thanks for commenting and of course as always thanks for reading my stuff!

  • Kurtis Engle

    Does this make the Idaho Wolf Derby advocates less moral and upright and more reactionary and salivating? And, what about the Wolf Derby proprietors?

    • Will Phoenix

      Hi Kurtis,
      I believe that some of the homework i did revealed that just like other animals the wolves are still considered legal to hunt in some places because of specifics in terms of population and so forth. So I would say there is no concrete right or wrong to your question until all the figures are properly studied. The report the feds were looking at did not take a lot of tings into account regarding the entire country and was not a brand new report either. I personally think they are beautiful creatures but I also think you don’t want them to overtake any area populated by humans either. Maybe we could keep people from living too deeply in the sticks so to speak and then the wolves would never end up in our backyards lol Thankd for commenting and for reading my stuff.

      • Kurtis Engle

        Study this question, Will.

        How many people spent how much time and money to save the Wolf? Are any of them hunters? So, where do the hunters derive the right to destroy what everyone else is willing to work to save… from the hunters.

        Now, if you would please notice that YOU HAVE AN OPINION and it is not in favor of the Wolf or the people who have paid for it. Listen to yourself. You don’t think people and wolves can occupy the same space.

        • Will Phoenix

          That is what our hunting laws and regulations are all about Kurtis. I have written some stories about hunting and the government considers research on population and so forth before giving hunters the right to hunt any animal.
          My opinion was more of an observation actually. There have been recorded incidents of animals attacking people. I was just generalizing along those lines. I think we can occupy the same planet as animals but wild animals need to live in the wild.
          Regarding predators, there has to be a balance. Hunting laws are supposed to work to help keep a balance. From what I have researched they set limits and have specific times and some animals are not even allowed to be hunted anymore in some parts of the country. Thanks for your comments!