US Fish & Wildlife turn over Wolf Management to Montana - by Maria Ferguson
On Friday, June 24, 2005 the US Fish & Wildlife (USFW) turned over the management of Gray Wolves to the State of Montana. Carolyn Sime, the Wolf Recovery Specialist for the State of Montana's Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, had this to say,
"This basically gives us the key to the car and the credit card. What it means is that at this point, the state steps up to the plate in the management of Wolves, and the USFW takes a step back."
Friday's decision was an important step in an effort to eventually turn over full rein for the protection of Wolves to the individual states.
"While the ultimate vision is delisting the Wolf, this is an important interim step that recognizes the commitment and good will of the people of Montana, " Ed Bangs USFW Wolf Recovery Coordinator said in a statement on Friday.
Montana's Wolf Management plan is committed to population monitoring, research and public outreach.
Until the Wolf is delisted federally, Montana will not have full rein but will be able to put into practice sections of their plan and when the time comes for Wolves to be considered recovered the transition for state management will be much smoother.