State Capitol News
4:57 pm
Thu December 2, 2010

Federal Court Against Groups Trying to Preserve Mexican Wolves in State

Phoenix, AZ – The groups wants the locations of where wolves had attacked
cattle. The U.S. Department of Agriculture, which works with
ranchers to kill or remove wolves, has that data. Michael
Robinson of the Southwest Center for Biological Diversity said
this information is necessary to preserve the wolves which were
reintroduced to Eastern Arizona in 1998. He said there were only
42 animals at the beginning of this year, down 19 percent from a
year earlier.

(The leading cause in losses is the federal government responding
to livestock depredations by shooting or trapping wolves. And so
we sought to find out where are these conflicts taking place on
public lands, primarily on national forest lands, so that we
could look at the factors that go into them and change policies
that would allow wolves to stay in the wild.)

Robinson said that could include restrictions on grazing on
public lands. A federal judge ruled last year the data had to be
disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act. But the appellate
court concluded that specific GPS locations for agricultural
operations are exempt -- and that the program to kill or remove
wolves fits that definition. For Arizona Public Radio this is
Howard Fischer.