U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Tom Koerner/USFWS via Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license

The Trump administration has made several rule changes to the Endangered Species Act that they say will provide transparency while protecting species.

The U.S. Interior Department may have complied with requests from an oil industry trade association to remove some environmental species act protections for a beetle, according to agency records. 

Jessica Ulysses Grant

Chytrid fungus is a deadly disease that infects amphibians worldwide, and it's considered the worst infectious disease in the history of vertebrates. Once infected, amphibian populations often see drastic declines and sometimes even go extinct.

A group of wildlife advocates is suing the federal government, saying they need to have more of a role in helping to prevent grizzly bear deaths on national forest land in Idaho and Wyoming.


CC0 Public Domain

The federal government is officially pursuing an appeal on a judge's decision to put the Yellowstone Grizzly Bear back under Endangered Species Act protections.

Flickr Creative Commons/Charles Peterson

After years of effort, two wildlife biologists are getting closer to opening a wildlife rehabilitation center in the town of Driggs, Idaho. Teton Wildlife Rehabilitation Center Co-Founders Renee Seidler and Lindsey Jones said there's a need for such a facility because Idaho's only rehab center is on the other side of the state, and Wyoming doesn't have one at all. So far, they've sunk a well, constructed an access road on the property and built waterfowl and beaver rehabilitation ponds.

Brian Waitkus

A California condor recently flew from Arizona to Wyoming but died shortly after arriving. California condors are an endangered species, and the bird, which was being tracked, was taken in for a necropsy by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

MILFORD, Utah — The San Francisco Mountains in southwestern Utah were once home to one of the richest silver mines in the world. When it comes to mining today, they stand mostly quiet — for now — with only a handful of rock mines operating in the area.

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Wyoming is the latest state in the Mountain West region to be sued by conservation groups over how a federal wildlife kill program is conducted in the state.

Dwayne Reilander via CC BY-SA 4.0

Wyoming plans to appeal a U.S. District Court Judge's decision from September to put the Yellowstone grizzly bear back on endangered species act protections.

Vital Ground: Gary Wolfe, Executive Director via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license

A pair of conservation groups recently purchased land in northwest Montana hoping to help secure a corridor for grizzly bears to travel between two isolated ecosystems: the Cabinet-Yaak in Montana and Selkirk on the border of Idaho and Washington. This comes after a couple of recent sightings of grizzly bears moving on the periphery of both areas.

It’s pretty weird seeing my dad cut into the neck of a dead cow elk.

Like me, my dad Mike has never hunted before. He’s a software engineer. But now he’s wearing blue latex gloves, covered in blood, as he peels skin and fur off the animal.

Public Domain

Wyoming officials have long been trying to reform the Endangered Species Act. Just last week, Wyoming Game and Fish Deputy Director testified to a Senate committee why more funding is needed.  A new online application tool hopes to aid wildlife managers with budget needs for individual species. 

Public Domain

This time of year, is hunting season in Wyoming, and the state is known for its prime elk hunting. But after a series of conflicts with grizzly bears, outfitters and guides say there needs to be better grizzly management in the state.

LUKE RUNYON / KUNC

The temperature is hovering right around 90 degrees the day Dale Ryden and I float down the Colorado River near Grand Junction, Colorado. The water looks so inviting, a cool reprieve from the heat, but if either of us jumped in we'd be electrocuted.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released a staff directive making it more difficult for the public to obtain important documents - particularly ones related to the Endangered Species Act and decisions surrounding new listings. Noah Greenwald, Endangered Species Director of the Center for Biological Diversity, said the controversy all started with a leaked memo.

Eleven grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem have been euthanized since the beginning of September in a "particularly bad month" for grizzly conflicts, the Powell Tribune in Wyoming reports.

That rate may be normal for the fall.

Wyoming Game and Fish Department

It's been a week since Wyoming lost management authority of the Yellowstone grizzly bear. This at a time when grizzly activity is increasing.

Bob Wick, BLM

Some western lawmakers are up in arms over a Trump administration announcement that eases the requirements for drilling near sage grouse. For now, Wyoming isn't impacted by the announcement, though that could change.

The Interior Department is once again facing change in agency leadership. The acting head of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has stepped down. 

A Wyoming toad about to be released
Cooper McKim / Wyoming Public Radio

A wildlife refuge near Laramie is expanding by nearly 600 acres. The Mortenson Lake National Wildlife Refuge is one home to reintroduction efforts of the endangered Wyoming toad, whose population crashed in the mid-1970s. The amphibians have since been brought back to the area where they are beginning to breed in the wild.

A year and a half into the Trump presidency and several federal land agencies do not have directors—

including the National Park Service, Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Former land managers say the lack of leadership has grave consequences for the future of public lands.


 


US Fish and Wildlife Service-Mountain Prairie Region

After less than 20 years on the list, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing the removal of a flowering plant from the list of threatened species. The pink and white Colorado butterfly plant grows up to three feet tall and along waterways in southeast Wyoming and Colorado’s Front Range but urban encroachment nearly wiped it out.

Public lands facilities around the nation are cutting budgets and staff. But in the Mountain West region, cutbacks at Montana's National Bison Refuge are prompting accusations of a political vendetta by regional U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service managers. 

Charles Preston

When federal protections were lifted for the Yellowstone-area grizzly bear last year, conservation groups quickly got to work to reverse that decision. One of those attempts was recently thwarted when U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced they would not restore protections after a months-long review.

Melodie Edwards

The Bobcat Trapper

Riverton trapper Tom Krause shows me around his workshop where furs of every sort are displayed on the wall.

“I have some pelts here that you might be interested in. To begin I have a melanistic phase of a raccoon, which is a black raccoon or the opposite of being albino.”

Henry Mulligan; https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:American_bison_on_the_National_Bison_Range,_Montana.JPG

A federal judge ordered the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to reconsider its decision to deny Endangered Species Act protections for the Yellowstone bison.

 

Nic Patrick

With grizzlies off of the endangered species list, many scientists view grizzlies as a success story. But the question is how does the bear successfully return to a heavily populated environment? Wyoming Public Radio’s Kamila Kudelska looks at the history of grizzly management to possibly learn some lessons for how to handle grizzlies in the future.

 

Yellowstone National Park Emblem Sticker
National Park Service

A coalition of tribal and conservation groups is asking a judge to restore federal protections for Greater Yellowstone grizzly bears, as it also asks the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), to restore federal protections on their own.

US Fish and Wildlife Service

Very few of the elk that winter every year on the National Elk Refuge outside Jackson are making their traditional long migration all the way to Yellowstone National Park for generations, and wildlife biologists are worried they’ll eventually forget the route altogether.

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