In the 1990s, when the federal government determined that it would restore wolf populations to the Northern Rockies, it aimed to cultivate 300 wolves. Today, biologists say, there are at least 1,700 wolves in six states. And that poses a problem for places like Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho, where officials say the predators are attacking livestock, writes The Associated Press. Several governors have said they might seek to create wolf hunts in their states, which could become a reality as the Obama administration discusses the possibility of Congressional support for removing wolves from the Endangered Species List.
The frustration from the governors and U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar “is that everybody recognizes that the [wolf] population is not only recovered, but it is robust,” says Wyoming Governor Dave Freudenthal. Wolves were eliminated from Colorado in the 1930s, say state wildlife officials, but they appear to be returning to the northern part of the state, perhaps because of the recovery program in the Northern Rockies. The Fort Collins Coloradoan lists a number of wolf sightings and other evidence for their presence in recent years.