Born Free USA position: OPPOSE
Bill description: This bill would prohibit the Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks Commission from prohibiting the hunting or trapping of wolves in an area immediately adjacent to a national park. This bill is in direct response to the public outcry after at least seven Yellowstone wolves were killed last year. The public asked that the commission protect Yellowstone wolves by creating a safety boundary around the park. If this bill passes, the commission will not be able to make such a decision.
Background: Yellowstone National Park wolves have been killed as they wandered just outside of the park boundaries, as they commonly do. The majority of Yellowstone wolves live on the park’s northern range, which is mostly in Montana. Wolves are an important part of the Yellowstone ecosystem and economy. Yellowstone National Park visitors coming to see wolves bring in $35 million annually to local economies, and nearly 4 percent of Yellowstone National Park's 2.8 million annual visitors say they would not have visited the nation's oldest national park if wolves weren't there.
What you can do: Write or e-mail your legislators and ask them to oppose HB 73 for the above reasons.
Find the bill text here.
Find your legislators here.
Note: The text and status of Montana bills is available at http://leg.state.mt.us/css/default.asp.