The Federal government takes back its control of gray wolves.

One might find it hard to keep track of the on again, off again listing and de-listing of protections for the gray wolf population. As a result of recent legal action, gray wolves in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Michigan are once again protected under the federal Endangered Species Act, at least until after public comment.

"That's basically the gist of the lawsuit – that there wasn't ample time for the public to comment on the final rule that de-listed wolves earlier this year."

Georgia Parham, spokesperson with the US Fish and Wildlife Service, says her agency reached a settlement with a coalition of animal rights' groups to re-list the wolves until the public has ample time to express their opinions and concerns. 

"So under terms of the agreement, which I understand still has to be approved by the court, we will provide an additional opportunity for people to comment on the rule."

Parham says wolves have exceeded recovery goals and are thriving under state management, so after an agreed-upon period of time, she'd like to see wolf management return to the states' control.

Currently up to 626 gray wolves are estimated to live in Wisconsin, from just 25 in 1979.

AUDIO: Jackie Johnson report (1:21 MP3)

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