September 23, 2010 in Idaho

Crapo, Risch sponsor wolf delisting bill

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Idaho Sens. Mike Crapo and Jim Risch introduced legislation Wednesday to remove Endangered Species Act protections for wolves in Idaho and Montana, as well as portions of Washington, Oregon and Utah.

The bill is a response to a federal court order in August that restored protections.

U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy ruled it was illegal for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to delist a species on a state-by-state basis in Montana and Idaho, while leaving out Wyoming’s predator population.

Crapo says the legislation comes as frustration over wolf management is mounting. The animals’ population in the northern Rocky Mountains has swelled to 1,600.

The bill directs the U.S. Department of the Interior to draft regulations to delist the wolves within a year.

“Idaho has met and greatly exceeded every recovery goal imposed on the state by the federal government for the gray wolf and has shown that we Idahoans can properly manage the wolf just like any other species,” Risch said.

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