Starting May 4th, more than 1,000 wolves could be killed -- the result of a recent decision by U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar to eliminate life-saving protections for wolves in the Northern Rockies -- including Greater Yellowstone -- and other parts of the American West.
Last year, the Bush Administration briefly eliminated federal Endangered Species Act protections for these wolves. More than 100 of the region's estimated 1,600 wolves were killed in only a couple of months. The outcome could be much worse this time.
Idaho is seeking to eliminate up to 26 wolf packs, and the state's governor -- C.L. "Butch" Otter -- says he wants to be one of the first to shoot a wolf. Worse, the new rule would also eliminate Endangered Species Act protections for wolves that are only now beginning to return to their historic range in Washington, Oregon, Colorado and Utah.
Please help protect the future of America's gray wolves. Urge President Obama to stop this misguided plan by signing the petition below.
As you know, On March 6th, 2009, U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar approved the Bush Administration's discredited plan to eliminate Endangered Species Act protections for wolves in the Greater Yellowstone states of Idaho and Montana -- a decision that could lead to the deaths of more than 1,000 wolves!
Eliminating Endangered Species Act protections for these wolves should be contingent upon two things that have not yet been achieved: 1) The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service needs a delisting plan based on current science that guarantees a minimum wolf population level that is both sustainable and genetically connected. The delisting plan's goal of 300 to 450 wolves in the region is far too few to sustain a healthy wolf population. 2) All of the states in the delisting area must have wolf management regulations that provide for a sustainable and well connected wolf population.
Interior Secretary Salazar's decision fails to adequately address biological concerns that led a Federal court to overturn the same wolf delisting rule late last year when the Bush Administration issued it. The Secretary's decision also fails to address important concerns with Idaho's state wolf management plan and state regulations that undermine the goal of a sustainable wolf population by killing massive numbers of wolves.
Under current state wolf management plans, more than two-thirds of the region's wolves could be killed, threatening the overall future of wolves in the region. In fact, current state wolf management plans seem more directed at wolf eradication than sustainable management of a wildlife population that the federal government has spent millions of taxpayer dollars to rescue from extinction.
For all these reasons, I sincerely hope you will reconsider your administration's position on wolf management in the Northern Rockies.
Thank you for considering my comments. I look forward to your reply.