An executive order that took place last October removed gray wolves from the list of animals on the endangered species list. It was thought that they didn’t need protection from the government any longer because the numbers had rebounded. Unfortunately, this has led to mass slaughter.
A hunting season was opened up in 2021 that allowed the Wisconsin gray wolf to be hunted and trapped. It was now legal for state officials to have control over the gray wolf population, and the Natural Resources Board felt that allowing 200 wolves to be killed outside of reservation land was acceptable.
The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources talked about the 119 gray wolves that were allocated to the state in a press release. 81 remaining wolves would be allocated to the Ojibwe Tribes.
Although there was a limit placed on how many wolves could be killed, it only took 60 hours for hunters to kill 216. It was originally intended to be a one-week-long hunt but it ended after only three days.
In Wisconsin, the hunting season lasts from November until the end of February. Since gray wolves were now no longer protected, wildlife officials could open up the hunting season. It is interesting to note, however, that they had already scheduled the hunting season, even though the protection didn’t end until January.
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The hunting season was scheduled for November 2021, but Hunter Nation, a hunting group, accused the state officials of delaying the wolf hunt to allow anti-hunting groups to block and stop the hunt.
A lawsuit was filed on February 2 that demanded the state law will be changed so the hunt took place right away. They were concerned that their opportunity to hunt the wolves was limited because of additional policies being enacted by the current president.
On February 12, a Jefferson County Circuit Court judge gave permission to start the season that same month.
According to The Baltimore Sun, a lawyer for the Humane Society, Nicholas Arrivo, said: “I think the actual death toll is considerably higher because of the rippling effects through the wolf family structure.”
Environmentalists are claiming that the killings took place when gray wolves were vulnerable because it was during the breeding season.
There are also saying that they need to be protected under the Endangered Species Act because so many of them were killed.Whizzco