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Beyond Politics- The Science Behind Gray Wolves

posted Apr 3, 2015, 10:31 PM by chloe owens

3/6/15, by Brooke Kansier, Great Lakes Echo

Beyond politics – the science behind gray wolves

… during the 1800s and 1900s, this keystone species began to clash with another predator — the humans who increasingly inhabited the land. People significantly reduced wolf populations as they competed for food and threatened livestock… a clash that particularly resonates today, as politicians, activists and hunters fuel heated debates on the current state of the species’ endangered status…“Scientifically, wolves have not recovered because they have not returned to a significant portion of their historic range,” said Adrian Treves, an associate professor of environmental studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Treves and Knapp are among 50 wildlife biologists and scientists who signed a recent open letter urging Congress not to alter the Endangered Species Act or protection of the gray wolf. According to Treves, the species has only returned to about 20 percent of its historic range, which originally included somewhere between 29 and 39 states “Wolves can’t live everywhere, they wouldn’t like it down here with us,” Knapp said. “But the point is, there are places wild enough for wolves.”