Diane Boyd gave a well-received presentation last Wednesday during a seminar hosted at the University of Montana W.A. Franke College of Forestry and Conservation . . .
A lot of people talk about the important role federal and state lands play in protecting wolves, but Diane Boyd, a wolf and carnivore specialist, said those public landscapes often are at high elevation and don’t harbor wintering populations of deer and elk.
In fact, the scientist said Wednesday that wolves need both private and public lands protected, and the private swaths are critically important.
“They hold the key, in addition to the federal lands, to maintaining grizzly bears, wolves, elk, deer, everything,” Boyd said.
Federal lawmakers pressed Interior Secretary Sally Jewell on Wednesday to drop the administration’s plan to end federal protections for gray wolves across most of the Lower 48 states.
Seventy-four House members signed onto a Wednesday letter to Jewell that cited a peer-review panel’s recent conclusion the government relied on unsettled science to make its case that the wolves have sufficiently recovered.
Gray wolves were added to the endangered-species list in 1975 after being widely exterminated in the last century. Protections already have been lifted for rebounding populations of the predators in the northern Rockies and Great Lakes regions.