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California Ranchers Fight Gray Wolf Protections

posted Mar 8, 2017, 9:02 PM by chloe owens

2/3/17, by Rebekah Kearn, Courthouse News

California Ranchers Fight Gray Wolf Protections

A week after President Donald Trump signed an executive order rolling back environmental protections, the California Farm Bureau and ranchers sued the state, challenging its listing of the gray wolf as endangered…They claim that giving the gray wolf substantial protections not easily contravened, the commission overturned a years-long, collaboratively developed wolf management plan that protects livestock from wolf predation, and threatened the safety and livelihoods of farmers and ranchers.  Plaintiffs’ attorney Damien Schiff with the Pacific Legal Foundation insists that the lawsuit is not anti-wolf…Once abundant nationwide, gray wolves were nearly exterminated from the Lower 48 states because hunters killed them for preying on livestock. By 1920, the entire gray wolf population in California was gone. In at least one aspect, the lawsuit is an extension of the long-running political fight between states’ rights groups and the federal government…At issue behind the complaint, but not directly addressed by it, is the question: If the federal government declares that a species is in danger of extinction and needs protection, to what extent, if any, do the states have the right to refuse?