“No one can do everything, but everyone can do something.”
In June, 2013, the USFWS announced its plan to remove the gray wolf from the federal protections afforded by the Endangered Species Act in the lower 48 states. Wolves need continued protection to expand into much of their historic range before they are removed from the list. Few gray wolves presently roam in the vast majority of their former range. A recovering wolf population isn’t static. It spreads as wolves rebound. A blanket delisting will threaten fragile populations that are still trying to make a comeback on the American landscape, including the Northeast region.
According to a peer review report by an independent panel of scientists, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's move to strip gray wolves from federal protection is based on insufficient science. In the report, produced by the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS) at UC Santa Barbara, an independent panel of wildlife biologists from universities, the California Academy of Sciences, and the Natural Resources Defense Council agree unanimously that more study is needed before the wolf is removed from ESA protection.
Growing evidence suggests wolves are attempting to naturally re-colonize the Northeastern United States from neighboring populations. The availability of wolf prey and habitat has been documented to support wolf recovery, as both are abundant in the Northeast. The only obstacle to the return of the wolf in the Northeast is leadership and a clear plan for its recovery.
Since Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts and New York do not acknowledge the presence or likely presence of wolves, they have failed to provide the measures necessary to adequately protect them from being killed so that they can continue to disperse naturally throughout their historic range in this region.
In response to the independent report, FWS opened public comment on its wolf delisting proposal until late March; thus, the process that will potentially remove gray wolves from the Endangered Species List has been delayed. We urged those in the Northeast to TAKE ACTION, and thousands sent in their personal comments. Presently, we await a final decision regarding the outcome of FWS proposals.
What can you do?
Visit the websites of member organizations and supporters. Follow their action alerts and other suggested ways that you can support and/or participate in the democratic process to be a voice for wolves in the Northeast, US.
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