After many years of federal protection that cost millions of tax dollars, gray wolves will be fair game for hunters and ranchers in most of Wyoming when the animals are removed from the endangered species list on Friday (Mar. 28).
Wyoming, Montana and Idaho will take over full “management” of the wolves, while the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is ending its wolf recovery effort.
In northwestern Wyoming, the state will continue a federal policy allowing ranchers to kill on sight wolves caught in the act of attacking their livestock or domestic animals.
They are allowed to kill the wolves, even though Defenders of Wildlife has provided a compensation program to ranchers for livestock killed by wolves. Can you believe it? The latest figures I could find show Defenders had spent $200,000 on this program by the end of 2003.
In the rest of Wyoming, the rules will allow people to kill wolves at any time and for any reason. (Can you spell H-U-N-T-I-N-G?)
Amazing, isn’t it, how our government has been able to bring the wolves back from the brink of extinction … so that Wyoming, Montana and Idaho can issue licenses to hunt and kill these animals as a very profitable source of revenue for the states?
Just remember … YOU helped pay for this. Kinda makes you feel warm all over just thinking about it, doesn’t it? /Gary