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Grizzly Delisting Begins

GrizzlycubsplayingurlConservationists should celebrate as federal officials begin the process of removing the Grizzly bears in and around Yellowstone from endangered species protection. The move will shift management responsibilities from the feds to the state of Wyoming. This means a limited hunting season could be on the horizon.

I wrote a short post recently on the Endangered Species Act, and here is one of the rare success stories. Of course, the biggest obstacle to beginning a hunt will be public outcry. The same people that watch bears from cars on the roads of Yellowstone, feed them junk food and otherwise intefere with habitat will almost certainly claim that a bear hunt will destroy the fragile species. Pish posh. Having followed the New Jersey bear debacle for the last three years, it's pretty obvious that hunter's don't have a negative impact on animals that are deemed "huntable" by wildlife officials. In fact, my bet would be that the incidents of bear attacks/encounters will be drastically reduced when a few hunters take to the mountains.

Speaking of which, one of our editors here was charged by a grizzly during a deer hunt in Alaska. I'll be posting his exclusive report on the website this week. Just hearing him tell the story will make you need a new pair of underwear.

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My only worry is that Wyoming will mismanage the bear population. Most state gov'ts are fine and their DNR's do a good job. But some are disasters who either give out too many or too few tags or licenses with terrible results for everyone involved.
Would be better for the Feds to retain some oversight over Wyoming.


Since one of the areas where bears are being delisted includes Yellowstone Park, I'll have to see who has jurisdiction. The laws are funny since the park is older than some of the surrounding states.


Colin, our executive editor has some answers. First, which I should've made clear in my first post, is you cannot hunt in national parks, including Yellowstone. Second, the grizzly is being reduced from endangered, but is still considered threatened. That means the US Fish and Wildlife Service will have oversight for setting quotas and hunts.

Jeff Drenning

I don't see the management of the Grizzlies being messed up, as Will said, the US FIsh & Wildlife Service will have the say on hunts. I think if the population is stable enough a hunt should be instituted, it will definitely cut down on the number of bear/human encounters. Like you said though, there will still be enviromentalists and anti's protesting this, but they never have been very intelligent folks.


I agree totally that a hunt needs to be implemented, I just want to make sure that US Fish and Wildlife is involved. The only people who could be against a hunt at this point would be the same wack jobs that came out in NJ last year. The involvment of the Feds is necessary at this juncture to insure that different states and other jurisdictions don't screw up what, to this point, has been a successful program to bring back the Griz.

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