Wolves are at the center of a seemingly never-ending debate in the United States. The species was brought back from the brink of extinction over the past few decades. Then, wolves lost their federal protection during the final days of the Trump administration. Now, state-sponsored hunts have been quickly making dents in the wolf population.
According to MPR News, the issue is back in federal court in California. One side is hoping the judge upholds the loss of protection for wolves while wildlife advocates hope the decision is reversed. According to the report, this isn’t necessarily a red versus blue issue. President Biden defended the removal of wolves’ federal protection.
The court proceedings on Friday focused on some mundane topics. A federal attorney posed a highly technical question as to whether gray wolves really constituted a “valid species”. The issue is whether or not gray wolves specifically are unique enough to constitute a species. If gray wolves are not technically a “species” then they cannot be protected under the Endangered Species Act. Wildlife advocates called this a back-door way to strip the animals of their protection.