President Biden weighs down on wolves | Idaho
President Joe Biden recently indicated his support for new protections for gray wolves, although the details of his position are not entirely clear.
Biden appeared with Dr.Anthony Fauci in “Brave Wilderness,” an outdoor children’s program that airs on YouTube with over 18.7 million subscribers. The show generally focuses on wildlife and learning about different species and habitats.
The President and Fauci appeared as guests on the show to answer questions from hosts Coyote Peterson and Mark Vins about COVID-19 vaccines and the summer travel season. In the middle of the 12-minute clip, Biden praised the show for talking to children about the importance of protecting the environment before starting the first of several wolf comments.
“One of the things I get from my grandchildren, some of them are really little, call me up and say, ‘Pop, they’re gonna kill all the wolves, they’re going to kill the wolves, Pop,’ Biden said. “Why is this happening, Pop?” “
While the president did not elaborate on what prompted the remarks, wolves have become a national problem in recent months after a hunt in Wisconsin far exceeded the set quota and Montana and Idaho adopted. laws to reduce the number of wolves.
Montana Governor Greg Gianforte also made national news after trapping and killing a wolf near Gardiner without taking a state-required certification course. The governor received a written warning from the state game wardens, but was allowed to keep the skin and head.
Peterson later shared that one of his favorite shows featured the Colorado Wolf and Wildlife Center, which he felt was important to highlight “the atrocities to eliminate wolves” and that animals “need protection more than ever. “.
The president agreed.
“I’m in it. I’m in it with you,” he said, asking the hosts for advice on the natural resources at risk.
Biden also noted that he loved dogs and that domestic dogs were descended from wild wolves. He also mentioned that he spent time with wolves on two separate occasions, one being a wild wolf and the other an apparent joke on politics. He did not develop his experience with a wild wolf.
Attempts to contact the White House to ask if the president supported listing wolves in the Endangered Species Act were unsuccessful.
When asked about the president’s comments, Republican Gov. Greg Gianforte’s office said the wolves in Montana should remain under state control.
“We are eager to learn exactly what the president means. That said, wolf populations are re-established in Montana and as a result, the state will continue to manage this population responsibly, ”said a spokesperson for Gianforte.
Ultimately, Biden does not have the unilateral power to invoke the protection of endangered species. That decision rests with the Home Office’s US Fish and Wildlife Service, which reportedly initiates a listing process that could take years.
Late last month, three environmental interest groups called on the administration to invoke an emergency wolf re-registration order in response to actions in Montana and Idaho. The federal government has yet to respond.
The administration said in January it would reconsider an order by former President Trump to remove federal protections from the Endangered Species Act for wolves in the Lower 48. The delisting prompted Wisconsin to hold a wolf hunt. wolf, which authorities halted after three days with hunters killing 216 wolves – far exceeding the quota of 119.
Montana and Idaho, whose wolf hunting and trapping seasons date back to 2009, also passed laws to reduce wolf populations in each state, which together number about 2,700 wolves.
Montana’s new laws include extended wolf trapping seasons and the authorization of traps to trap wolves.
Another law allows wolf hunters and trappers to be reimbursed privately for their costs of slaughtering a wolf.
Final law directs state officials to reduce wolf populations to “sustainable” numbers, including consideration of baiting, night hunting on private land, and the unlimited taking of wolves by an individual in areas with a high density of wolves. The law does not define “sustainable” and state officials do not expect to identify a specific population target.
New Idaho Law Signed By Gov. Brad Little Brings Several Changes For Hunters And Trappers As Well As Funding For Private Contra Hiringteurs to kill wolves. The law allows unlimited wolf hunting and trapping on a single license, night hunting and the use of snowmobiles, ATVs and helicopters.
Supporters of the laws have said wolf populations have increased dramatically in many areas and are negatively impacting big game herds and livestock.
Opponents defend the value of wolves as part of a natural ecosystem, also claiming that some of the new methods of hunting and trapping exceed ethical limits.
Wolf populations increased in the 1990s in the Northern Rockies following transplants in Yellowstone National Park and Idaho as well as natural restocking. Federal authorities first deregistered the Wolves from Montana and Idaho in 2009 – a decision overturned a year later by the court. In 2011, Democratic Sen. Jon Tester of Montana and Republican Representative Mike Simpson of Idaho added an endorsement to a budget bill to remove wolves from the region.
Tom Kuglin is the associate editor of the Lee Newspapers State Bureau. Its coverage focuses on the outdoors, recreation and natural resources.