Wolves are still in the crosshairs of some in Congress and state governments. After a federal court lifted endangered species protection for wolves in Wyoming, the state’s Game and Fish Department reported that it plans this fall to hold the first wolf hunt in four years. The hunt itself would take place in northwestern Wyoming, just outside Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. Elsewhere throughout the state, wolves could be shot on sight at any time, year-round.
In May, however, gray wolves in the Great Lakes states were granted a reprieve when environmental and endangered species champions in Congress prevented the addition of dangerous riders to the budget agreement funding the federal government through September. Between the House and Senate bills, there were more than 75 riders attacking various environmental and wildlife protection measures, including multiple provisions that affected the listing status of gray wolves under the Endangered Species Act. Even greater effort will be needed to keep these same riders from appearing in appropriations bills for the fiscal year starting in October.