In 2021, the Montana and Idaho legislatures each passed a suite of bills liberalizing wolf hunting. These changes ignited national debate around fair chase ethics, norms of state wildlife management decision-making, and potential relisting of wolves in the Northern Rockies under the Endangered Species Act.
Honing in on Montana, hosts Alex and Jared explore what these recent changes to wolf hunt regulations could mean for wolf populations in the state and for people who share the landscape with wolves. Plus, they seek to understand if a collaborative, ground-up, scientifically and publicly-informed management approach could create more durable solutions that might help prevent pendulum swings in the future.
Links and resources from State management in the Northern Rockies
Research led by Eric Olson, published in Conservation Letters: “Pendulum Swings in Wolf Management Led to Conflict, Illegal Kills, and a Legislated Wolf Hunt” (PDF)
Montana Free Press bill tracker 2021 legislative history of:
- SB 314: Revise laws related to wolf harvest
- SB 267: Authorize reimbursement for wolf trapping and hunting
Montana Hunt Regulations: fwp.mt.gov/hunt/regulations/wolf
Check out WLA’s Working Wild Challenge: westernlandowners.org/working-wild-challenge/
Recommended listening: The On Land Podcast, presented by Western Landowner’s Alliance
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Working Wild U is a production of Montana State University Extension and Western Landowners Alliance with support from the Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation, Western SARE and you, our listeners.
Today’s episode was directed and edited by Zach Altman and produced by Matthew Collins, Zach Altman, Alex Few, Jared Beaver, and Abby Nelson.
Our hosts are Jared Beaver and Alex Few.
Louis Wertz is our Executive Producer. Music is from Artlist and Blue Dot Sessions.
Special thanks to Kathleen Shannon for helping edit this episode, and thanks to Doug Smith, Abby Nelson, Dan Vermillion, Mike Jimenez, and Ken Mills.
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