Help recover America's wolves
The USFWS has proposed to delist gray wolves. Removing federal protections, especially for Northwest wolves, is premature. Action and talking points. Comment deadline is September 11, 2013.
Washington's wolves, including this Wenatchee Pack wolf, are at a fragile stage. Photo © Craig Monette
Removing protections is premature
The Obama administration recently proposed a rule to remove Endangered Species Act protection for gray wolves in the most of the lower 48 states - including the Pacific Northwest. They are now asking the public for their comments on the proposal.
Take action for wolves.
Conservation Northwest supports protecting wolves under the Endangered Species Act until they have fully recovered, especially vulnerable packs such as those returning to Washington’s Cascade Mountains. While wolves have made a remarkable rebound in the northern Rockies and western Great Lakes over the past 15 years, those areas represent only a small portion of their historic range. The Service's proposal to remove protections for all wolves living outside of the Rocky Mountains, Great Lakes, and a small area in the Southwest is a political decision that isn’t justified by science. Leading wolf scientists have expressed their concern. We need your help in telling newly appointed Secretary of Interior Sally Jewell that this proposal is premature and that wolves in the US need comprehensive, not piecemeal, recovery.
Urge the Department of the Interior to protect gray wolves as they continue to make their historic comeback in the US. Personalizing your message makes a strong statement for wolves. Comment deadline is September 11, 2013.
- Wolves perform a crucial role in maintaining wildlife diversity and ecosystem function. The Service’s decision to turn their backs on wolves means millions of acres of habitat will remain empty and without the benefits from wolves for years to come.
- Wolves west of the Rockies are pretty scarce, and at a fragile stage. Loss of protection now could put at risk “seed” packs like the Teanaway and Wenatchee Packs that are critical to establishing a viable population in the Cascades and Coast.
- Washington does have a quality state plan that calls for recovery in the Cascades/Coast, but its penalties for poaching a wolf are minimal and subject to local politics. Without the more strict penalties that come with Endangered Species Act protection (up to $50,000 and a year in jail), discouraging illegal killing is much more of a challenge.
- Ask the Service to recognize Washington’s Cascades and Pacific Coast wolves as a distinct population, and at minimum to list them as "threatened" species. This approach would allow all the aspects of state management plans to be implemented and provide higher poaching fines, while still providing meaningful protection where adequate state recovery plans are still lacking.
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