Tell Montana's Fish and Wildlife Commission: Protect Yellowstone's wolves

In the 20th century, wolves were nearly driven to extinction in the Lower 48 states.

The eradication of wolves in Yellowstone National Park threw the park's ecosystem into chaos. Recognizing their importance, scientists reintroduced wolves in 1995, and since then the park's wolves have enjoyed special protections from being hunted. But these protections are limited to the park's boundaries -- and wolves, unlike humans, don't recognize borders.

This year, the state of Montana lifted hunting and trapping restrictions in Montana wolf management units 313 (Gardiner) and 316 (Cooke City), the two areas bordering Yellowstone. As a result, wolves put themselves at immediate risk of being killed if they wander too far from the park, as happened with three young wolves in early September.

Wolves are of vital importance to the health of Yellowstone National Park. To protect them and the overall ecosystems of Yellowstone, restrictions to hunting and trapping wolves should be restored in Montana wolf management units 313 and 316.