Wild Matters

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Green Sea Turtle, © NOAA

© Angelique Rea

Public is Pro-Wolf

As the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service considers abandoning gray wolf recovery across most of the lower 48 states—even eliminating Endangered Species Act protections for wolves in areas where they have yet to be restored or barely have a foothold—recent polls released by Defenders show that the public is against the idea. According to a poll in California, Oregon and Washington, voters strongly support restoring wolves to suitable habitat in their states and believe that wolves should continue to be federally protected until they are fully recovered. 

A similar poll in Arizona and New Mexico—where only about 75 Mexican gray wolves remain—found that citizens there also strongly support wolves—and the restoration of wolves into the Grand Canyon ecoregion and northern New Mexico.

Instead, FWS is considering keeping wolves boxed into an area, which does not include the most suitable habitats and where any wolves that venture outside arbitrary lines will be trapped and returned. 

“Our primary hope now is that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will listen to the millions of wolf supporters who want to see wolves fully recovered in their states. Sadly, the administration has been turning a deaf ear so far to the many voices asking it not to abandon America’s wolves.” —

More Articles from Winter 2014

Florida Panther (captive), © Joel Sartore
On the 40th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act, these faces remind us that they matter
We will soon know the fate of gray wolf management throughout the majority of this country. If the federal government shamefully abandons its conservation responsibilities for this magnificent animal, the battle will surely move on to the federal courts.
Lesser Prairie Chicken, © Joel Sartore
Emergency Preparedness; Red Wolves in the Spotlight; Plummeting Lesser Prairie Chicken Population
Florida Manatee, © Joel Sartore
It was a tough year for Florida manatees. At press time in December, the death toll stood at 796—more than double the 2012 total, making 2013 the deadliest year on record.
California eliminates lead in hunting ammo, protecting condors and many other species.
© Flickr USer 24oranges.nl
Branded America’s favorite fruit, the banana isn’t usually grown in ways favorable for wildlife.
Defenders' staff get ready to release black-footed ferrets. From left: Russ Talmo, Kylie Paul, Charlotte Conley and Jonathan Proctor, Photo: Kylie Paul/DOW
Black-footed ferrets reintroduced to tribal lands in the West
Green Sea Turtle, Photo: NOAA
Named for THE color of their fat—a result of their exclusively vegetarian diet as adults—green sea turtles come ashore each year to nest as they have done since the age of the dinosaurs.