Gray wolf. Credit: Gary Kramer / USFWS

A federal court ruling put up another roadblock as Wisconsin hunters have been seeking to hold another gray wolf hunt since a Madison judge temporarily blocked the hunt last year.

California U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White, an appointee of former President George W. Bush, restored federal protections for gray wolves, banning Wisconsin hunters from access to what a Columbia County judge said was a constitutionally required annual wolf hunt. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service failed to prove how wolf populations can be sustained across much of the country with being relisted in the Endangered Species Act.

Conservation group Coyote Project last year successfully pushed to halt Wisconsin’s wolf hunt in a Dane County court case. The group’s national carnivore conservation manager Michelle Lute in a press release said Americans want to coexist with wolves.

“The American public is clear: they demand more than just persistence for wolves,” she said. “All wolves deserve full, enduring protections and a national recovery plan that will allow them to fulfill their ecological functions and live self-determined lives without persecution.”

Advocacy group Hunter Nation has been pushing for another wolf hunt. President and CEO Luke Hilgemann in a press release said the latest ruling will halt responsible and common-sense predator management solutions across the country.

“At Hunter Nation, we prefer to trust local experts and conservation and hunting partners to come up with predator management programs that make sense for them rather than putting our faith in bureaucrats who don’t spend time in the woods or never have to deal with the negative consequences of an uncontrolled wolf population,” he said.

See the Lute release here.

See the Hilgemann release here.

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