Editorial: Wolf hunting should not be allowed within Rockefeller Memorial Parkway, connector of Grand Teton and Yellowstone

By the end of the 1920s, the gray wolf had been eradicated from the greater Yellowstone ecosystem of northwestern Wyoming and southwestern Montana. This species had called this beautiful, mountainous region home for thousands of years, but was pushed out by human development and largely unfounded fears. And the environment suffered for it. Without a top predator, the elk and other grazing species here became lazy, damaging the health of habitats and other species by staying too long in one location and compromising their own genetic make-up.

After years of hard work and compromise dating back to the 1960s, actions were finally taken to restore the greater Yellowstone ecosystem's top predator. In 1995 the National Park Service (NPS) released gray wolves back into the wild inside Yellowstone National Park and since then the species has thrived, becoming a favorite for tourists visiting our nation's first national park. But this successful recovery may soon be in jeopardy if appropriate protections are not taken in anticipation of the gray wolf coming off the endangered species list in Wyoming, which is expected to happen just weeks from today.

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