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Wisconsin Lawmakers Call on Ryan to Delist Gray Wolf
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 10/07/2016

A group of 19 state legislators have written to House Speaker Paul Ryan of Janesville asking him to encourage his Congressional colleagues to take action and pass the State Wolf Population Management Bill. The measure includes language by Sen. Ron Johnson and Rep. Ried Ribble that would remove the gray wolves from the Endangered Species List in Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota and Wyoming. A similar proposal has been added to the Senate version of the North American Energy Security and Infrastructure Act.

"Recently, we hosted the Great Lakes Wolf Summit in Cumberland," the letter stated. "The presentations and thoughtful discussion confirmed much of what we already know... the wolf population has fully recovered and has greatly exceeded the state goal of 350 wolves."

The lawmakers say the population of wolves in Wisconsin alone has ballooned to almost 900 animals. They also shared transcripts of stories told at the wolf summit and noted that the nearly 200 people in attendance were concerned about what the out-of-control wolf population presents to pets, livestock and children.

"During the public testimony, northern Wisconsin farmers talked about how they are suffering devastating losses of precious livestock," they added. "One of those farmers sadly shared that he was seriously contemplating selling the farm that's been in his family for over 100 years."

Wolves in the western Great Lakes area were relisted under the Endangered Species Act two years ago by a federal judge. Prior to that time, states were given the authority to regulate wolf populations, which prompted Wisconsin to offer a limited hunting season for the animals.

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