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Judge hears wolf appeal

Wed., June 16, 2010

MISSOULA – A federal judge heard arguments Tuesday on whether gray wolves in Montana and Idaho should be protected once more under the Endangered Species Act.

Wildlife advocates sued the federal government after the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service named wolves in the Northern Rockies a distinct population segment and removed them from the endangered species list in April 2009.

The Fish and Wildlife Service turned over wolf management to Montana and Idaho wildlife officials but left federal endangered species protections in place for wolves in Wyoming, where state law is considered hostile to the animals’ survival.

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