The Grizzly bear population is coming back. Should they be taken off endangered protection? | The Tylt
The Grizzly bear is the largest North American predator. Unfortunately, due to human actions the population in the lower 48 states has dropped as low as 1,500 individuals. Their range also drastically shrank during the 20th century.
In one of their protected habitats, Yellowstone, federal officials say the population has had a beautiful rebound and has hit capacity for that habitat to sustain. It's uncommon for a protected species to be removed from the endangered list. In fact, it's only happened for 35 animals out of 2,000. But, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services has now proposed to remove the Yellowstone Grizzly from federal protection. Keeping the bears listed is expensive and critics say diverts needed resources that could be used to protect seriously imperiled animals.
The restoration of the grizzly bear in Montana, Wyoming and Idaho during the last three decades stands as one of America’s great conservation successes—a testament to the value of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and the strong partnerships it drives. The Yellowstone grizzly bear population has rebounded from as few as 136 bears in 1975 to an estimated 700 or more today.
A Wired article goes into greater detail about the decision but also the controvercy behind it.
Many environmentalists disagree. Some even claim that grizzly bears are more threatened than ever by climate change and human activity, and have questioned the science the FWS used to propose delisting.... Other scientists agree that it’s too soon to say the grizzly bear has recovered. “The population is facing an uncertain future right now,” says Sylvia Fallon, the director of wildlife conservation at the Natural Resources Defense Council. “We think full recovery means addressing the huge amounts of uncertainty around its population size, food sources, and isolation.”
What do you think? Should we throw a party at the success of being able to take the Grizzly bear off the endangered list? Or, did the government bureaucrats get this one wrong?
The Grizzly bear population is coming back. Should they be taken off endangered protection?
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