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Forest Service Protections Sought for Wolves in Idaho, Montana Wildernesses

BOZEMAN, Mont.— A coalition of wildlife advocacy groups, represented by the non-profit environmental law firm Earthjustice, today asked the U.S. Forest Service to issue new protections for wolves in designated wilderness areas following Idaho and Montana’s enactment of a rash of aggressive anti-wolf laws.

The groups’ petition, submitted to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and top Forest Service officials, asks the agency to enact measures to protect wolves in National Forest wilderness areas from new Idaho and Montana laws authorizing use of professional contractors and private reimbursement programs resembling 19th-Century wolf bounties to dramatically reduce wolf populations in the two states.

During their 2021 sessions, the legislatures of Idaho and Montana both enacted harsh anti-wolf laws that target up to 1,800 wolves across the two states. One goal of the laws is to artificially inflate elk populations to levels last seen in the mid-1990s, before wolves were reintroduced to their historic range in the Northern Rockies.

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Media Contacts:

Endangered Species: James Quirk, Media Specialist, jquirk@biologicaldiversity.org, (908) 902-3177
Climate: Nyshie Perkinson, Media Specialist, nperkinson@biologicaldiversity.org, (718) 928-5148
Public Lands, National Monuments and Borderlands:
Mary K. Reinhart, Media Specialist – mkreinhart@biologicaldiversity.org, (602) 320-7309
Oceans, Offshore Drilling, Arctic: Steve Jones, Media Specialist – sjones@biologicaldiversity.org, (415) 305-3866
Pesticides, Toxics, Air Pollution, Industrial Agriculture and Environmental Health: Andy Parker, Media Specialist – aparker@biologicaldiversity.org, (503) 310-5569
Population and Sustainability: Kim Dinan, kdinan@biologicaldiversity.org, (513)535-1306

Patrick Sullivan, Media Director, psullivan@biologicaldiversity.org, (415) 632-5316
Russ McSpadden, Creative Media Specialist – Media Photos, rmcspadden@biologicaldiversity.org

Banner photo Center for Biological Diversity; photo of jaguar by Robin Silver, Center for Biological Diversity