Gov. Kate Brown believes the federal government should continue to protect gray wolves as an endangered species—but not necessarily in Oregon.
She wrote a letter to the Trump administration saying she doesn’t support delisting wolves from federal protection, even though Oregon Fish and Wildlife Director Curt Melcher does. According to an OPB article, Brown acknowledged that she and her wildlife chief have a philosophical difference when it comes to federally protecting wolves.
In Western Oregon, where the wolf population numbers at least 137, Brown said she doesn’t believe endangered species protections are warranted, but she said they should remain in effect for the rest of the lower 48 states.
In 2011, Congress delisted wolves in Washington and the eastern third of Oregon. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is seeking public comments on a proposal to remove protections elsewhere. That would let more ranchers kill wolves attacking livestock and perhaps enable wolf hunting in the future.
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