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News and Opinion

DON'T ROLL BACK FEDERAL PROTECTIONS FOR WOLVES

Guest Opinion by AMAROQ WEISS, September 15, 2013 - The Seattle Times
As Washington state lawmakers and wildlife managers fine-tune the state’s wolf conservation and management plan, they need only look to the nation’s capital for some tips on what not to do.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is considering dropping Endangered Species Act protections for wolves across most of the Lower 48 states even though wolves have recovered to only a fraction of their past range and numbers. Wolves face aggressive hunting and trapping in all of the states where protections have already been removed.

The anti-wolf policies in our nation’s capital and many western states stand in sharp contrast to what most voters and top wolf scientists are calling for.

A 2011 Colorado State University report showed that 3 in 4 Washington residents wanted wolves protected. Across the nation, almost 2 out of 3 people surveyed opposed federal plans to drop protections for wolves, according to a report by Public Policy Polling this summer.

The nation’s leading wolf researchers concur that wolves need continued protection to sustain the recovery of a genetically robust population.

Yet there’s mounting evidence that bureaucrats in the nation’s capital have been actively working to muzzle some of those scientists. Earlier this month the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service excluded three wolf researchers from participating in the scientific peer-review of the proposal to drop federal protections for wolves in the continental U.S.


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Read the entire article in The Seattle Times


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