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Salazar, Strickland Encouraged by discussions with Governors Concerning Gray Wolves

Lakewood, CO -- At a meeting today with the Governors from Idaho, Montana and Wyoming, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks Tom Strickland discussed a path forward regarding the Northern Rocky Mountain gray wolf population.

"The successful recovery of the gray wolf is a stunning example of how the Endangered Species Act can work to keep imperiled animals from sliding into extinction," said Secretary Salazar. "Today's meeting was very constructive and I appreciate that the Governors' share our goal to delist the species with a responsible approach guided by science."

"There are many complexities involved in how we conduct the delisting," said Assistant Secretary Strickland. "In today's meeting we discussed how we move forward to both delist the wolf and provide appropriate protection in the future."

In April of 2009, Secretary Salazar affirmed the decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to remove gray wolves from the list of threatened and endangered species in the northern Rocky Mountain states of Idaho and Montana and parts of Washington, Oregon and Utah. Wolves will remain a protected species in Wyoming.

Recently a federal judge in both Wyoming and Montana ruled against the Department on the delisting and on related issues, and wolves currently remain listed under the Endangered Species Act in all three northern Rocky Mountain States.

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