MISSOULA, Mont. U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy on Friday granted a motion allowing the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation to enter an amicus curiae brief supporting state-regulated wolf hunting in Idaho and Montana.
The move means RMEF positions will be considered against an emergency injunction filed by 13 environmental groups asking the judge to stop a planned hunt and return gray wolves to the endangered species list.
A hearing is scheduled for Monday and Molloy's ruling could follow soon afterward.
The Elk Foundation's amicus curiae brief is posted at www.rmef.org.
"We're grateful that Judge Molloy has agreed to hear our side of this issue," said David Allen, RMEF president and CEO. "Once you cut away the hysterics and hyperbole, this is a straightforward wildlife management issue.
"State wildlife agencies have proven their professionalism and capability to balance predators with other resident species. They've been successfully managing wildlife for decades and we have total confidence in them."
The Elk Foundation's brief reinforces four main points:
• Historic success of modern, hunter-based conservation in North America.
• Viewpoints of hunters who continue to pay for the big-game resources that made wolf recovery possible.
• RMEF-funded research, along with other scientific and anecdotal evidence, showing that wolf populations are fully recovered and that, where wolves are present with elk, wolves are having detrimental impacts on elk.
• State wildlife agencies are best suited to manage wolves alongside other species.