Thursday, June 09, 2016

Mexican gray wolves need rescuing from politics

By Michael J. Robinson / Center for Biological Diversity
 This spring saw two steps forward for securing the future of the endangered Mexican gray wolves.

 Two captive-born pups were introduced into a wild wolf family in the Gila National Forest in late April. And the same week, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service finally agreed to complete a legally required Mexican wolf recovery plan. But the agreement, submitted to a court almost 40 years to the day after Mexican wolves were protected under the Endangered Species Act, came only because a lawsuit by conservationists forced the agency to follow the law.

Now, two new developments highlight why it’s critical that the upcoming recovery plan – as well as current wolf management – be anchored in science, not politics.

First, a court will soon decide whether to grant the request of Gov. Susana Martinez’s administration to order removal of the new pups in the Gila and to enjoin future wolf releases.

And in the meantime, in late May, federal trappers captured yet another Mexican wolf.

The circumstances surrounding removal of one of only 97 wolves living in the wild in New Mexico and Arizona reflect an issue central to the recovery effort: requiring reasonable steps to deter wolves from becoming habituated to livestock...

And Robinson concludes: 

The service should extricate itself from state politics driven by the livestock industry, stop removing wolves from the wild, release five or more family packs into the Gila as scientists recommend, and write a recovery plan that will ensure the Mexican gray wolf contributes to the natural balance in the Southwest and Mexico forever.

1 comment:

J.R. Absher said...

Robinson has never held a position with a science-based wildlife agency or organization, has a master's degree in literature, and has been with the Center for Biological Absurdity since its founding. Some expert, huh?