Arizona Game and Fish Commission Backs Wolf Delisting

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Arizona appears to be joining other western states wishing to manage their own local wolf populations. According to the Arizona Daily Star, the Arizona Game and Fish Commission voted to support a bill pushed by a group of congressional Republicans that would delist the Mexican wolf as an endangered species, along with all other gray wolves living in the Northern Rockies and elsewhere in this country.

Its worth noting that this doesn't mean that Arizona is seeking hunting of wolves or eradication, rather the state wishes to "become more heavily involved in planning the species' future and would run wolf reintroduction in a 'more affordable, efficient and effective manner'."


hawkeye270's picture

You are absolutely right

You are absolutely right Vermonster about Arizona's wolves being an entirely different matter than Wyoming, Idaho and Montana's. Not only is the situation (wolf pack number, overall population size, recruitment etc.) different, but it is a different subspecies altogether that unlike the robust wolf populations further north, is NOT doing well. I think getting the mexican gray wolf delisted in Arizona is a very, very long shot. It basically is not going to happen. The wolves up north have drastically exceeded the delisting criteria set forth in the Environmental Impact Statement. I do not know the specifics of the mexican wolf EIS but I can tell you that the estimated 42 wolves currently living in the state is no where near it. That population level is not high enough to avoid serious problems with loss of heterozygosity and inbreeding. I understand their argument as a state's rights issue but this is the type of situation (very low population levels) that the ESA has been successful at handling in the past. Is it the only option though... not necessarily.

Ca_Vermonster's picture

It figures that all of the

It figures that all of the other states with wolves will follow each other's lead.  However, if there is one place that may not be able to push it, it's Arizona.  Mainly because of the fact that it's a seperate subspecies of wolf, the Mexican Wolf. 

They have decent numbers of them, but I could see some people wanting a better study to be done first.  Most people hear "wolf" and lump them all in together.

Hey Jim, that would be quite a slam, wouldn't it?  I wish it would happen here, but I don't believe I will live to see the day that mountain lions are opened up to hunting in California. 

Oh well, I can hope.

jim boyd's picture

I have seen this wolf issue

I have seen this wolf issue pop up more and more lately...

I am now wondering if at some point in the future, there could become a viable wolf season, with the all important revenue stream that comes from it... not just in license sales but for both in state and out of state hunters and all of the various industries that are supported by folks that travel around in a state to hunt.

It could even be that a state might "grant" you a wolf license if, for instance, you purchased a mule deer tag and an elk tag... or something to that effect, particularly if a state felt that the hunting was slipping... or was looking for a way to make their state more attractive.

Maybe that is way out in left field?

I can see that certain hunters would revel in the chance to bag a wolf... maybe create a triple slam that is wolf, mountain lion and bobcat or something to that effect.

Just a thought!

ecubackpacker's picture

When you get down to the

When you get down to the basics of the issue with wolves, the states want to have control of managing them within their borders. Arizona is like the other states who have a wolf population raoming their borders. Let the states have the say so on how these wolves are managed. The states will do the best job in bringing the wolves to manageable populations. They want to get rid of the politics involved when the Feds get control of managing the wolves.

It is the hunters and their taxes on guns, ammo and other fees that has helped to fund the reintroduction of these populations of wolves throughout the west, not the enviromentalists. They are the problem when it comes to managing wolves. Too many preservationists and too much Federal control prevent the true conservationist from managing wolves.  

Wolves everywhere

It seems wolves are the hot topic in todays hunting and conversation story lines. There is no lack of news and stories about who should manage them and what they should do with them.  There are mutiple sides of these coin for sure. A wide range of opinions by experts and people who think there are experts and alittle by us 2cent givers.  This isnt an issue down here in the south but it interesting reading all the same. I hope everything works for the best at both ends.  I know the ranchers arent so sympathetic to the wolf cause. Their lively is at stake in some cases.  I wish all the best.