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Sen. Karin Housley issued this statement urging Congress to “delist the gray wolf as an endangered species.” In the statement, Sen. Housley states “I am pleased the U.S. House of Representatives included an amendment in one of its recently-passed spending bills to bypass the courts and delist the gray wolf as an endangered species. By nearly every metric, the gray wolf’s recovery goals have been exceeded and this language would return management responsibility where it belongs: with the states. Farmers and landowners are prevented from protecting their livestock against wolf attacks because of this burdensome regulation. Instead of siding with far-left environmentalists, Tina Smith should put her brand of radical, left-wing partisanship aside and support this effort in the U.S. Senate.”

By all objective measures, the timber wolf, aka the grey wolf, is no longer an endangered species. Further, it shouldn’t be listed as a threatened species, either. According to this government definition, the definitions of an endangered species and a threatened species are spelled out in simple, easy-to-understand wording. An endangered species “are at the brink of extinction now.” Meanwhile, threatened “species are likely to be at the brink in the near future.” This is important information, too:

Threatened status benefits species and people in two situations: (1) it provides Federal protection before a species reaches the brink of extinction; and (2) in the case of species that were initially listed as endangered, threatened status also allows scaling back Federal protection as they recover and no longer need the maximum protections of the Act.

State natural resource management agencies designated by the Service may “take” (kill, wound, trap, or move as defined by the Act) individuals of a threatened species in pursuit of conservation programs for the species. In contrast, those agencies are prohibited from “taking” an endangered species if the action might kill or permanently disable the specimen, move it to another state, move it beyond its historical range, or keep it in captivity for longer than 45 days.

The environmental activists to which Sen. Housley refers have argued, literally, that species that’ve been put on the endangered species list are forever at risk of extinction. In their mind, the ESA, aka Endangered Species Act, should protect endangered and threatened species alike with equal ferocity.

The thing about environmental activists is that they’re never willing to accept the fact that the ESA worked. If they did, they’d be much less rabid and much more moderate and tolerable.

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