Trump has long pushed to remove Endangered Species Act (ESA) protections from grey wolves. If removed, management of wolves is passed on to the state, as has already happened in Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho. What happens when states, who historically have had strong opposition to wolves due to ranching concerns, are left to manage the populations?
When ESA protections were removed from wolves in Idaho, 570 wolves were killed within a 12 month period. Among the body count were nearly 3 dozen wolf pups, 4 to 6 weeks old. Some of the wolves had shattered teeth from trying to bite their way out of traps, others died of hyperthermia in the traps, and many more were gunned down in aerial control operations.
In a year’s period, Idaho slaughtered almost 60% of its wolf population in what can only be called legal slaughter, backed not by science, but by anti-wolf hysteria. Idaho substituted barbarity for stewardship in what is Exhibit A of what to expect of removal of ESA protections for wolves – a move by the federal US Fish & Wildlife Service that is likely imminent by the end of 2020.
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