Last Tuesday, a Lewis and Clark district court judge issued a temporary restraining order affecting gray wolf hunting and trapping regulations in wolf management units (WMU) at Glacier National Park and Yellowstone National Park. According to the press release, the order was effective immediately.
The changes from the order restrict all hunters and trappers to harvest a maximum of five wolves per person and season. It also bans snares as a legal method for trapping. The restraining order also reinstitutes WMUs 110, bordering Glacier National Park, 313, and 316, which border Yellowstone National Park. One wolf has been harvested in 313, closing hunting and trapping in the area. No harvests have happened in the 316 and 110 WMUs.
The temporary restraining order expires on November 29, with a court case hearing for gray wolf hunting regulations. Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks (FWP) are set to make legal arguments for the case scheduled for November 28.
Montana FWP director, Hank Worsech, says there is a healthy and stable wolf population in the state, proving the state can manage wolves and will continue to do so. “We will comply with the judge’s order and look forward to the opportunity to defend good science and management strategies,” Worsech said.
A total of 56 wolves have been harvested so far for the 2022-2023 season. In 2021, 18 wolves were harvested in WMU 313, and three harvests in 316.