National delisting proposal lowers bar for endangered species conservation
WASHINGTON (June 7, 2013) – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released its proposal today to strip federal protections for gray wolves nationwide except for Mexican gray wolves in the Southwest.
The following is a statement from Jamie Rappaport Clark, president of Defenders of Wildlife:
“This proposal sets an unfortunate low bar for endangered species recovery in the United States. Wolves currently inhabit only a fraction of their former range, and this proposal will cut off wolf recovery from vast areas of suitable habitat out west where the species can still thrive. Frankly, it’s disappointing that the federal government is ready to throw in the towel when wolves are still missing from key states like Colorado, California and Utah. These states have excellent habitat for wolves and can benefit both economically and ecologically from the return of wolves.
“Having just a few thousand wolves in the Northern Rockies and Great Lakes is a far cry from what many of us envisioned for gray wolf recovery when we embarked on this ambitious conservation effort nearly two decades ago. Though wolf recovery has made significant progress so far, that is not an excuse to give up now when the job is only half done. Without additional protection and resources from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, further gray wolf recovery in the United States may never occur.
“I sincerely hope that the Obama administration will listen to the millions of Americans who want – indeed, expect – the federal government to do a better job of protecting wolves and all of our nation’s imperiled wildlife.”
John Motsinger, firstname.lastname@example.org , 202-772-0288
Defenders of Wildlife is dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities. With more than 1 million members and activists, Defenders of Wildlife is a leading advocate for innovative solutions to safeguard our wildlife heritage for generations to come. For more information, visit www.defenders.org and follow us on Twitter @DefendersNews.