“Oregon’s wolf population grew over 15 percent last year, and meanwhile, wolves continue to kill livestock in the area under federal management, with little recourse for local ranchers. Today’s action by the Trump Administration to officially delist the gray wolf from the Endangered Species List is long overdue. This move will allow our state wildlife officials to manage the wolves more effectively by allowing for a single management plan under local control,” said Walden.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has recognized the recovery of the gray wolf and first proposed delisting it in 2013 under the Obama Administration, but litigation by outside groups brought the process to a crawl. Walden has been a longtime advocate for returning authority for protecting and managing gray wolves to individual states. In 2016, the House passed Walden's plan to remove the gray wolf from the Endangered Species list.
Before today’s announcement, management of wolves in Oregon was divided along arbitrary lines that left wolves in the eastern third of the state under Oregon state management, while the remainder were managed under the federal Endangered Species Act. Now, all wolves in Oregon will be managed by the State of Oregon, which will ensure that the wolf population remains at a healthy level and that livestock are protected.