Congressional Support for Distinct Population Segments
March 11, 2005
March 11, 2005 -- The congressional delegations from Idaho, Montana and Wyoming supported a communiqu? to the Department of Interior, strongly encouraging the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to consider all options in addressing the recent court order out of the U.S. District Court in Portland.
The Portland ruling stated that FWS improperly separated the gray wolf into Distinct Population Segments. This would require FWS to abandon its 2003 policy that created three regional recovery areas and would require the wolf to be recovered in its entire historical habitat at previous numbers before delisting can take place in any part of the United States.
The 10 U.S. Senators and Representatives reminded the department that all three states contain wolf populations considered 'non-essential, experimental.' "The 2004 Annual Report should be published shortly and will demonstrate that the wolf population not only is recovered but continues to grow," stated the contingency.
They continue by stating that boundaries of Distinct Population Segments, if upheld, can be established so that delisting occurs where it is warranted, additional wolf recovery remains an option where possible and publicly desired, and any such future recovery would be administer by FWS's general recovery program.