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Lawsuit aims to put grey wolf back on federal endanger species list

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A Gray Wolf is shown in a Michigan Department of Natural Resources stock image.  Source: http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,1607,7-153-10370_12145_12205-32569--,00.html
A Gray Wolf is shown in a Michigan Department of Natural Resources stock image. Source: http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,1607,7-153-10370_12145_12205-32569--,00.html

WASHTINGTON D.C. (WTAQ) - If the Humane Society of the United States has its way, there will never be a repeat of Wisconsin’s wolf-hunting season.

The animal rights-and-preservation group filed a lawsuit in Washington this afternoon against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and President Obama’s Interior Department.

The lawsuit asked the courts to put Upper Midwest grey wolves back on the federal endangered species list.

It said the government’s decision to de-list Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Michigan wolves threatens the animals’ overall recovery.

Other plaintiffs in the lawsuit are the Friends of Animals, Help Our Wolves Live, and Born Free USA.

Wisconsin has been above its wolf population quota for years – and the excess animals have killed farm livestock and damaged crops.

That’s why Wisconsin adopted a wolf hunt, in which 117 animals were shot and trapped in just over two months.

The season was supposed to end this month, but the hunting quota was reached in late December.

Humane Society lawyer Jonathan Lovvorn said the hunts took place quote, “hostile state management programs that encourage dramatic reductions in wolf populations.”  He said the removal from the endangered list was quote, “the only line of defense for wolf populations” which are being pushed to the “brink of extinction.”

The Fish-and-Wildlife Service said the wolf population had recovered – and as a result, it did what was required by law.

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