On August 31, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) announced that the Wyoming population of gray wolves is recovered and will be removed from federal protection under the Endangered Species Act. This population of wolves will be managed by the State starting September 30th under an approved management plan.
The state management plan will maintain at least 150 wolves and 15 breeding pairs in the State of Wyoming. USFWS expects the Greater Yellowstone Area wolf population to maintain a long-term average of approximately 300 wolves, while the entire Northern Rocky Mountains Distinct Population Segment is projected to sustain a long-term average of approximately 1,000 wolves. The Northern Rocky Mountain wolf population has recovered to over 1,773 adult wolves with more than 109 breeding pairs, and has surpassed recovery goals for 10 consecutive years.
Most of Wyoming’s wolf population, located in northwest Wyoming, will be managed as trophy game animals year-round. This status allows the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission to regulate wolf hunting and other methods of control.
USFWS will continue to monitor the federally delisted wolf population in Wyoming for a minimum of five years to guarantee a sustained recovery. The Service has the ability to reestablish federal protection if data demonstrate that it is necessary.
Source: FWS (August 31, 2012)