Representative Boubert pushes efforts to ‘support gray wolf flag’

US Representative Lauren Poubert represents Colorado’s third congressional district.
photo courtesy

U.S. Representative Lauren Poubert, Republican of Colorado, and Republican Representative Tom Tiffany of Wisconsin, are leading efforts to oppose a federal judge’s decision to return gray wolves to the endangered species list.

Over the past decade, the US Fish and Wildlife Service has restored gray wolves in Wyoming, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico and Arizona. In November 2020, Colorado voters passed Proposition 114, mandating the state to reintroduce wolves west of the continental divide.

A letter dated Thursday and signed by Boebert, Tiffany and about two dozen other lawmakers asserted that government and private conservation efforts were “more than enough” and that gray wolf numbers had exceeded the federal administration’s goals.

The letter cites an estimated 3,000 gray wolves across the Rocky Mountain states, including 1,543 in Idaho, 1,117 in Montana, and 327 in Wyoming.

“The Gray Wolf has fully recovered, and should remain de-listed in the lower 48 United States, and must be managed by the states,” Poppert said in a statement. “It really is that simple. Some activist justice from California should not be able to flip the best science available and break the law based on his left-wing political beliefs.”

Wolves were exterminated in Colorado in the 1940s, but resettlement efforts in neighboring states were so successful that at least one pair immigrated to the state.

According to the CPW, the two adult wolves bred and produced young in nearby Jackson County.

The pair came from a larger group in Wyoming. Based on the CPW’s forecast, wolves could move from the south to the state one day, too.

Meanwhile, Jackson County ranchers have reported multiple wolf killings of cattle and at least one dog Since December.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife confirmed on December 21 that this heifer was killed by wolves near Walden in Jackson County.
Colorado Cattleman Society / Image Courtesy

In November 2020, the US Fish and Wildlife Service delisted gray wolves nationwide, removing them from the endangered species list. The decision returned management of gray wolves to state and tribal wildlife agencies on January 4, 2021. The lift has won support from the Trump and Biden administrations.

However, the judge ruled In February 2022 he overturned the federal agency’s decision and put wolf management back into the hands of the US Fish and Wildlife Service. State wildlife officials said the two agencies will work together in the state’s reintroduction efforts.

“The same bureaucrats who worked in the Department of the Interior under the Trump administration and found the Gray Wolf to have fully recovered are still working in the department,” Poubert’s statement continued. “The flag has not changed, and Secretary (Deb) Haaland must appeal the unlawful decision of the California judge. I will continue to fight for our ranchers and protect their livestock from these dangerous predators.”

Colorado Parks and Wildlife employees monitor the M2101 gray wolf after it has been calmed down and fitted with a GPS collar. The M2101 was spotted in north central Colorado traveling with the M1084 gray wolf from the Snake River Pack in Wyoming.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife / Image courtesy

Along with Popper, Tiffany, and Representative Ken Buck, also of Colorado, 21 members of Congress and a female congresswoman signed the letter to encourage Haaland to appeal the judge’s decision. Carlisle Currier, the head of the Colorado ranch bureau, has also taken a stand against bringing the wolves back.

Representative Boebert’s office also noted that its $1 million appropriation request for the Livestock and Wolf Loss Show Program will help compensate farmers and ranchers whose livestock were killed by wolves reintroduced through federal programs after it was signed into law.

According to Representative Boebert’s office, it will also introduce legislation soon to remove gray wolf in the lower 48 states. Boebert represents Colorado’s third congressional district, which includes Pitkin County, Moffat County, and most of the Western Slope.

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