News From The Front…

No ruling yet over wolf settlement

Friday, March 25, 2011 12:00 am

MISSOULA — Ten conservation groups and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service asked a federal judge Thursday to approve their plan to lift endangered species protections for wolves in Montana and Idaho, effectively reversing his previous rulings on the matter.

But four other conservation groups who splintered from the plaintiffs told U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy the proposed settlement is driven by politics, not science, and will hurt the species before it has fully recovered.

“If the settlement agreement is entered, one thing is clear: hundreds of wolves will die,” said Jay Tutchton, attorney for two of the groups.

Molloy said he would rule soon on whether to recommend the proposed deal to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which has jurisdiction over the case since Molloy ruled for the plaintiffs last August and the federal government appealed.

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Groups lay out opposition to proposed wolf settlement

By EVE BYRON Independent Record , The Billings Gazette

Wednesday, March 23, 2011 12:00 am

HELENA — Two environmental groups who don’t want to settle the lawsuit over the delisting of gray wolves in Montana and Idaho say they don’t understand how their former partners in the federal court case can now support state wolf management plans that they previously found so inadequate.

A court-ordered response from what’s being called “the nonsettling parties” that was filed this week by the Alliance for the Wild Rockies and Friends of the Clearwater lays out their concerns with the proposed settlement that will come before U.S. District Court Judge Donald Molloy on Thursday in Missoula.

Mike Garrity, the Alliance’s executive director, said nothing substantial has changed with wolf management since the case was filed by 14 environmental groups in 2009. The groups claimed that the Department of Interior was wrong when it decided wolves could be considered a “recovered” species no longer facing extinction in Montana and Idaho, but not in Wyoming.

The split among states “failed to ensure that the northern Rockies wolf population exhibits genetic connectivity essential to its survival, and will allow the wolf population in Idaho and Montana to decline dramatically …” the groups stated in the lawsuit.

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Photo: Courtesy

Posted in: Wolf Wars

Tags: “settlement”, Judge Molloy, 10j, Montana and Idaho wolves in jeopardy

Published in: on March 25, 2011 at 2:18 am  Comments (8)  
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