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Issues

Arizona files motions today to protect state’s interest in Mexican Wolf recovery

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PHOENIX — The State of Arizona, on behalf of the Arizona Game and Fish Department, today filed two motions aimed at protecting the state’s interest in the Mexican wolf reintroduction program and successful recovery of the endangered wolf subspecies that inhabits east-central Arizona and New Mexico. Arizona filed a motion to intervene in the lawsuit Center for Biological Diversity v. Sally Jewell. The suit concerns the recently-revised 10(j) Rule that governs the management of Mexican wolves in Arizona and New Mexico. The state filed the motion to intervene to defend its trust authority over wildlife conservation in Arizona and its involvement in the revision of the 10(j) Rule. The state also filed a motion to dismiss the suit based on…

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Saving prime sage grouse habitat will mean fighting fires differently this summer

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A provision passed last year by Congress further complicates this process: The government can’t use federal funds to fully list the sage grouse or invoke the full restrictive powers of the law. So Guerry became one of the strongest advocates for Rangeland Fire Protection Associations on Browns Bench. But that doesn’t necessarily mean this fire season will be bad, said Ed Delgado, NIFC head of predictive services.

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Strategy on Greater Sage Grouse Outlined at Interior Hearing

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Interior Department plans to decide whether to list the greater sage grouse under the Endangered Species Act by Sept. 30, but whatever the decision the agency won’t write a rule implementing it, Secretary Sally Jewell said Tuesday.Congress approved language as part of a broad fiscal 2015 spending package (PL 113-235) that prevents the department from spending money to write a proposed rule if the Fish and Wildlife Service decides to designate the bird as threatened or endangered. Jewell…

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Idaho senators oppose loosening elk-import restrictions

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Sen. Lori Den Hartog, R-Meridian, said, “With all our industries, I think we need to be looking at ways to reduce regulation in a meaningful way.” But, she said, “That means balancing the needs of our industries with the other benefits that we have in our state, like our wildlife. I think those are important things to weigh, and I don’t think any of us take that lightly.

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Fighting the EPA: HB1432 provides $5 million for environmental litigation

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Cutting said some environmental decisions are made during what is called the “sue-and-settle” process. This process starts with an environmental group bringing a lawsuit against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service requiring a ruling concerning an environmental issue such as the endangered species status of a plant or animal. The judge might require a ruling within a limited amount of time. This limits research on the issue.

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Florida moving with comprehensive approach to reducing conflicts with Bears

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The Commission also asked staff to move forward with developing specific plans for a limited bear hunt in certain parts of Florida. Hunting alone is not likely to reduce human-bear conflicts in urban and suburban areas. However, in other states, hunting has proved to be an effective measure for managing bear populations and can help more direct measures of reducing conflicts such as securing attractants and removing conflict bears.

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Gray wolf travels more than 500 miles, shot in Utah

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…of a gray wolf in Utah since gray wolves were reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park and Idaho in the 1990s. Robinson raised doubts that the gray wolf could easily be mistaken for a coyote. “Wolves are quite a bit bigger than coyotes,” Robinson told the Times. “Even a small wolf like this is twice as big as your average coyote.” Robinson added that a Utah state program that pays out $50 bounties to hunters for killing coyotes _ in order to keep down the predator…

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The Idaho Statesman Rocky Barker column, Grizzly bears in Idaho

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A Fremont County jury convicted a local hunter for shooting a grizzly, even though he said the bear charged him. The grizzly petition comes nearly 20 years after wolves were reintroduced at Corn Creek in the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness. The polarized sides — wolf lovers and wolf haters — have dominated the discussion. Grizzly bears may well return to central Idaho, if they haven’t already.

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