Skip to main content

Howls of joy for wolves!  Judge Donald Molloy in Montana has ordered that the Northern Rocky Mountain gray wolf goes back on the endangered species list in Montana and Idaho.


The judge's opinion (50 pg pdf) decries the politics of the original delisting.  As background, the wolf was placed on the Endangerd Species List in 1974.  The animal recovered to the point where the Obama administration delisted the wolf in May 2009 in Montana and Idaho, but not Wyoming.  The first two states had what were supposed to be good plans for wolf management; Wyoming's plan for wolf management remained one step above "exterminate 'em all," and thus the wolf remained on the Endangered Species list in that state alone.

The district court disapproved of the "two out of three states ain't bad" approach.  The key holding:

The Endangered Species Act does not allow the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service to list only part of a "species" as endangered, or to protect a listed distinct population segment only in part as the Final Rule here does; and

the legislative history of the Endangered Species Act does not support the Service's new interpretation ofthe phrase "significant portion of its range." To the contrary it supports the historical view that the Service has always held, the Endangered Species Act does not allow a distinct population segment to be subdivided.

 Thus, "the rule delisting the gray wolf must be set aside because, though it may be a pragmatic solution to a difficult biological issue, it is not a legal one."  (opinion, p.6)

18342d[1]The judge held that the wolf must be either delisted across all three states or kept on the Endangered Species list in all three states.  The wolf has one distinct population in the Northern Rocky Mountains (the Mexican gray wolf, clinging to life in Arizona and New Mexico, is an entirely separate distinct population) and it doesn't respect state boundaries. "Even if the [Fish & Wildlife] Service's solution is pragmatic, or even practical, it is at its heart a political solution that does not comply with the ESA [Endangered Species Act]." (opinion, p.49)

The issue remains politically charged, the judge's ruling is relatively narrow, and I expect appeals to follow.  Still, it's the second good court ruling in two days for people who care about the rights of people and animals.

Originally posted to RLMiller on Thu Aug 05, 2010 at 04:13 PM PDT.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Bob Johnson, JekyllnHyde, Ed in Montana, ljb, hester, Izixs, BrooklynJohnny, decembersue, SarahLee, teacherken, askew, greendem, abarefootboy, GreenSooner, Joan McCarter, asimbagirl, Rolfyboy6, Pandora, Powered Grace, theboz, mattman, PeterHug, tnichlsn, byteb, bramish, KateG, eeff, denniswine, frisco, shpilk, object16, Norwegian Chef, shermanesq, Scott in NAZ, bronte17, missLotus, BlackSheep1, Agathena, Aquarius40, roses, ivote2004, Boston to Salem, PeteZerria, Glinda, Cedwyn, lirtydies, antirove, high uintas, Eddie C, wader, edrie, Dube, TexDem, Dallasdoc, missliberties, pat bunny, ranger995, Lawrence, betson08, AbsurdEyes, RebeccaG, ybruti, Curt Matlock, tomjones, JayDean, Pam LaPier, murrayewv, environmentalist, BoogieMama, Gowrie Gal, Julie Gulden, vcmvo2, joanneleon, marina, 3goldens, tle, mjd in florida, PBen, sap, triciawyse, truong son traveler, craigkg, citizenx, TigerMom, YucatanMan, trinityfly, ratzo, Chaoslillith, cfk, ladybug53, Burned, sheddhead, Sandino, kaliope, Geekesque, Lisa Lockwood, Cory Bantic, peacestpete, Ekaterin, JanF, Snud, fhcec, xaxnar, begone, lgmcp, reddbierd, Mother Mags, martini, Knucklehead, gwilson, tarheelblue, myboo, Dvalkure, KenBee, Wary, luckydog, blueoasis, birdbrain64, NearlyNormal, bleeding heart, boatsie, ER Doc, JugOPunch, Persiflage, RantNRaven, Dreaming of Better Days, blueoregon, Statusquomustgo, Hedwig, Nulwee, OHdog, ZenTrainer, NonnyO, BentLiberal, ammasdarling, old wobbly, bear83, out of left field, bluicebank, A Mad Mad World, DorothyT, tgypsy, possum, Dartagnan, ColoTim, gloriana, BruceMcF, aravir, FishOutofWater, la urracca, Thunder Dreamer, ezdidit, certainot, lurks a lot, DWG, ballerina X, joyful, joedemocrat, Orange County Liberal, jayden, Midwesterners, Moderation, uciguy30, Got a Grip, M Sullivan, JML9999, Phlogistician, gloryous1, Terra Mystica, rmonroe, JDWolverton, mconvente, condorcet, caseymarc4, zerone, kjallen, geez53, Senor Unoball, bythesea, elwior, Wes Opinion, jamess, beltane, Greasy Grant, Lujane, rssrai, pamelabrown, geomoo, bluesheep, TokenLiberal, mofembot, temptxan, S C B, luckylizard, doppler effect, allie123, Ellinorianne, squarewheel, ZhenRen, satanicpanic, maggiejean, 1BQ, J M F, DontTaseMeBro, rsmpdx, greengemini, Carol in San Antonio, CanyonWren, Stranded Wind, Methinks They Lie, Partisan Progressive, h bridges, JesseCW, DefendOurConstitution, geodemographics, MKSinSA, soms, Lopez99, kw7777777, allep10, Dark UltraValia, sfarkash, Roxy Hope, SheaG, jfromga, spicecakes69, citisven, Leftcandid, Larsstephens, ozarkspark, BlueOak, Amber6541, BigVegan, smileycreek, brentbent, methinshaw, angelesmartian, marabout40, patrickz, miss SPED, LaughingPlanet, politik, amk for obama, jethrock, UTvoter, luvsathoroughbred, birddog, LadyParadox, NY brit expat, samanthab, elginblt, Mariken, ThisIsMyTime, Egalitare, iceweasel, Funkygal, sluggahjells, addisnana, shel3364, rja, Unenergy, Casual Wednesday, elengul, ericlewis0, DemHikers, Onomastic, gobears2000, heart of a quince, StateofEuphoria, bgblcklab1, wildlife advocate, BlueJessamine, We Want Change, ontheleftcoast, soothsayer99, FarWestGirl, Situational Lefty, it really is that important, mawazo, Ebby, mydailydrunk, cama2008, marleycat, bobsc, Wolf10, akmk, floridablue, Vtdblue, enhydra lutris, corvaire, Keori, zapus, Safina, StateOfGrace, Anthony Page aka SecondComing, zenox, KingofSpades, Nightshade Q, Regina in a Sears Kit House, Apost8, PrometheusUnbound, Dom9000, YaNevaNo, QES, Domino14, Matt Osborne, damfino, Aji, delmardougster, passionateprotagonist, Miep, Joieau, peachcreek

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site