WASHINGTON D.C. — Today marked the final rule for President Trump’s Administration’s delisting of the gray wolf under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
Although the wolf was delisted in Wyoming in 2017, now the wolf will lose federal protections in the remaining 47 lower states.
The Trump Administration claims a “successful recovery of the gray wolf,” according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
This action removes federal protection over the wolves and gives state and tribal wildlife management agency professionals the responsibility for sustainable management and protection of delisted gray wolves in states with gray wolf populations.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said they will monitor the species for five years to ensure the continued success of the species.
Senator Mike Enzi commended the Trump Administration for delisting the gray wolf nationwide, saying that states like Wyoming have shown they are capable of managing the populations.
“States like Wyoming have shown they are able to effectively manage the gray wolf. It is important to remember that the purpose of the Endangered Species Act is to get to this point, where a species is fully recovered. I am hopeful that even more species in the future will be able to reach this milestone,” Enzi said.
However, conservation organizations such as the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) argue that while some populations of the gray wolf have recovered, there are some that remain in need of ESA protections.
In a press release titled, “Science Does Not Support Nationwide Delisting of Gray Wolves“, the NWF said the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service should rescind the decision to delist the gray wolf.
“Although certain distinct populations of gray wolves have recovered and merit delisting, national wolf populations have not, and a nationwide delisting decision is not appropriate at this time. Decisions around wolf management and any regional or national delistings should be guided by science, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service should rescind this decision,” said Collin O’Mara, president and CEO of the NWF.
According to the U.S. Fish an dWildlife Service, the final rule will publish in the Federal Register on November 3, 2020, and will be effective 60 days after on January 4, 2021.