I’m not sure what it means, but if it actually means wolves will be protected only in Yellowstone and Grand Teton Parks, and adjoining Wilderness areas. This really means wolves will be protected ONLY inside Yellowstone Park, and then only as long as they don’t step outside unless it is into a designated Wilderness. No packs live full time inside Grand Teton. In addition, Not a single wolf pack has its territory totally inside a Wyoming Wilderness area, much less those Wilderness areas adjacent to Yellowstone. Therefore, even Mollies Pack, the Bechler Pack, and even the Druids might be subject to being shot for fun because they sometimes leave the Park, and they leave in areas where a wilderness does not adjoin.
On the upside, this “deal” probably makes the delisting to contrary to law and the regulations that following, included changes in them that were procedural violations, that a federal judge has an increased change of slapping this down.
Story in the Idaho Statesman by Rocky Barker on the Deal.
Here is a link to a pdf map of the Greater Yellowstone wolf packs. Do you see a pack that lives entirely inside a designated wilderness area? Do you think that a judge will notice that there is no safe spot for wolves in Wyoming outside Yellowstone Park?
Update (May 27): Here’s a report on the latest view from Wyoming’s agricultural political elite. State eyes ‘ultimate’ predator. By Whitney Royster and Jeff Gearino. Casper Star Tribune.
The number of wolves in Wyoming outside Yellowstone National Park jumped by 31 percent in 2006, going from 134 to 175. With that increase, 123 cattle were reportedly killed by wolves, more than has ever been recorded in Wyoming since wolf reintroduction. In response, 44 wolves were killed, which is also a record for that time period
All the “ultimate predator” could do was kill 123 cattle?
This is unsaid, most of “the cattle” were calves and almost all reimbursed. Recall that in recent weeks too, the supposed decimation of Wyoming wildlife has suddenly turned into a big surplus of elk. As a result the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission wants to increase the take by human hunters.