Monday, December 9, 2013

Comments Sought On Delisting Gray Wolves

Wolf (Canis lupus) - captiveThe U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has proposed to remove the Gray Wolf (Canis lupus) from the list of threatened and endangered species.

The agency claims that the Gray Wolf’s population has been “restored” to its historic range and no longer needs federal protection despite their continued absence from the Northeast and the Adirondacks, along with parts of the Pacific Northwest and other areas of the Mountain West, which are parts of the wolf’s historic range. The Endangered Species Act says that the Gray Wolf must be protected throughout its historic range.

The delisting would leave wolves that might naturally return to the Adirondacks without any significant federal protection and susceptible to new hunting and trapping regulations. The wolf is considered a missing critical component of the regional ecology of the Adirondack Park and one of the key apex predators that once called the Adirondacks home.

Comments on the plan to delist the wolf are being accepted by the Fish and Wildlife Service until December 17, 2013. Comments can be submitted here.

Photo of a captive wolf by Larry Master.


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7 Responses

  1. I don’t know a lot about hunting laws but I wonder if they could be “protected” by New York State saying they are not allowed to be hunted/trapped. Until such time that there presence is significant enough to allow for it.

    • Paul says:

      I think they are now. It is illegal to shoot a wolf in NYS. Even coyotes can only be killed and trapped when they are in season.

  2. Paul says:

    “The wolf is considered a missing critical component of the regional ecology of the Adirondack Park and one of the key apex predators that once called the Adirondacks home.”

    I wonder if there is sufficient prey for wolves in the Adirondacks?

    • Andre says:

      Well that is how nature balances itself… where there is abundant prey predators flourish… when prey is less – predators starve and/or have less offspring. Human intervention in driving out predators has terrible consequences.
      The coyotes are the ones who would “suffer” – because don’t tolerate them. Coyotes though can live closer to ppl than wolves – so again – they balance themselves out. Coyotes proliferate so well in NY now because there are no established wolf and cougar populations.

      To answer – if wolves can find enough prey in the Bitterroot Mountains out west – they will in the ADK. Even in the Isle Royal near Michigan they (wolves) specialize to only hunt moose… and their numbers always balance each other out. Of course humans don’t live there.

      • Paul says:

        I imagine that the wolves in the bitteroot don’t run into a road every few miles when they are hunting there like they would here.

  3. Paul says:

    Does this mean that farmers and ranchers will no longer be paid for wolf related losses?

  4. Tim says:

    After perusing the USFWS bulletin on this issue, it seems the gray wolf is a different subspecies from the eastern wolf which lives in Ontario and Quebec. My guess is, the eastern wolf would be the most likely subspecies to visit the Adirondacks.