Thanks to the recent loss of federal protection under the Endangered Species Act, wolves are now “fair game”. A wolf captured in Utah 6 years ago and being tracked was killed in Wyoming, according to the article in today’s Salt Lake Tribune.
The wolf was not causing trouble, nor did it have a record of having caused trouble, and was one of three wolves shot, two of them near an elk feeding ground.
Born in 2000, the wolf was one of only two confirmed to live in Utah during the past 75 years. In 2002, it was caught in a trap near Morgan and taken back to Yellowstone National Park, where it rejoined the Druid Peak pack.
The pack is perhaps the most famous of the wolves set free in the Northern Rocky Mountain gray wolf-recovery area, which in Utah includes a small area east of Interstates 84 and 15 and north of Interstate 80.
The wolf delisting means the affected states – Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, Washington, Oregon and Utah – now manage the wolves.
Camenzind said people knew the wolves had been hanging around the feeding ground. “On Friday, they went out and shot them,” he said.
Wolf 253M “was a good wolf,” he said. “He covered thousands of miles and didn’t cause any trouble.”
Wyoming’s wolf management plan considers wolves predators that can be killed for any reason across most of the state. Only a small area near Yellowstone is off-limits, though Cowboy State wildlife officials plan to allow restricted fall hunting in the remaining protected area for trophy animals.
The Jackson Hole Conservation Alliance is one of several organizations that plan to file a lawsuit on April 28 against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service over its delisting decision.