AFBF: Gray wolf delisting "common sense"

Fish and Wildlife Service also working to make delisting other endangered species more straightforward.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently announced plans to delist the gray wolf from the endangered species list. AFBF President Zippy Duvall called the move a "triumph of common sense." (Photo sourced from Canva)

By Deana Stroisch

American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall described the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (FWS) plan to remove the gray wolf from the endangered species list as “a triumph of common sense” and a “conservation success story.”

With more than 5,000 gray wolves in the United States and more than 10 times as many in Canada, Duvall said the population of gray wolves “far surpasses the recovery targets called for by the Endangered Species Act (ESA).”

“The administration’s decision to delist the gray wolf is the culmination of a decades-long battle that has pitted science-based decision-making against litigious, environmental activism,” Duvall said.

The Bush and Obama administrations also supported removing the gray wolf protections, Duvall noted.

A proposed rule to delist the animal will be published in the Federal Register. Public comment will be accepted.

“Recovery of the gray wolf under the Endangered Species Act is one of our nation's great conservation successes, with the wolf joining other cherished species, such as the bald eagle, that have been brought back from the brink with the help of the ESA," according to an FWS statement.

Last fall, the FWS and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine Fisheries Service proposed changes to the ESA, which Illinois Farm Bureau supported.

“Among other important common-sense updates included in the Fish and Wildlife Service’s recent rulemaking is their attempt to make delisting species more straightforward,” said Lyndsey Ramsey, associate director of natural and environmental resources. “Setting recovery goals should mean something, and in this case, the gray wolf met the population goals the Service set for it and should absolutely come off the list.”

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