With the departure of Ken Salazar as Interior Secretary, the decision on removing gray wolves from the Endangered Species Act was put on hold by the new head of the Department, Sally Jewell. There are efforts to move this action forward, however.
From the NY Times editorial:
In Idaho, hunters and trappers killed 698 wolves in the last two seasons — more than the estimated population of 683 wolves in the state at the end of 2012. In more than 80 percent of Wyoming, anyone can kill as many wolves as they wish, without a license. Hunters and trappers in Montana will each be allowed to kill up to three wolves this winter. (In Idaho, the number is 10.) Beginning this fall, hunters in Wisconsin can use dogs to track and chase wolves — a scenario that all but amounts to state-sanctioned animal fighting.
A number of organizations have been promoting non-lethal ways to control wolf predation on lifestock, but the ranching interests are as easily whipped into hysteria as members of a Glenn Beck fan club meeting.
Where management has been transferred to the states, America’s wolves have fallen under an assault of legislation, bullets and traps. A conservation victory is quickly turning into a conservation tragedy. Now the Obama administration is proposing to remove virtually all remaining protections. Have we brought wolves back for the sole purpose of hunting them down?