UPDATE: Idaho Fish and Game wasted no time, announcing late today that wolf tags were for sale - $11.50 for residents and $186 for nonresident hunters. A valid 2011 Idaho hunting license is required to buy a tag.
UPDATE: The Center for Biological Diversity filed a challenge in a federal district court in Montana today, saying the Congressional rider which lifted endangered species protections from wolves was unlawful. The suit is based on Article III of the U.S. Constitution, which establishes the principle of "separation of powers."
"The wolf rider is a clear example of overreaching by Congress that resulted in the wrongful removal of protections for wolves," said Noah Greenwald, endangered species director at the Center of Biological Diversity. "Congress has set a terrible precedent that we hope to overturn."
Idaho is once again in charge of managing gray wolves in the Gem State. As expected, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service published a rule in the Federal Register today, removing wolves from protection under the Endangered Species Act. The delisting also removed protections in Montana and parts of Oregon, Utah and Washington. The agency also published another rule that could lead to delisting of wolves in Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Virgil Moore, director of the Idaho Department of Fish and Game, tells BW that he expects to have details for a proposed hunting season for the Fish and Game Commission to review at its July meeting. Rules could be set in August, and a full wolf hunt is expected with the opening of the big game season in early September.