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PNS Daily Newscast - April 20, 2018 


The DOJ delivers the Comey memos to Congress. Also on our rundown: More evidence that rent prices are out of reach in many markets; Wisconsin counties brace for sulfide mining; and the Earth Day focus this weekend in North Dakota is on recycling.

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Last Chance to Comment on Grizzly De-listing

The public comment period on a proposal to take the Yellowstone Grizzly off the endangered species list ends today. (skeeze/pixabay)
The public comment period on a proposal to take the Yellowstone Grizzly off the endangered species list ends today. (skeeze/pixabay)
May 10, 2016

WEST YELLOWSTONE, Idaho - If you want to have your say about the feds' proposal to take the Yellowstone Grizzly off the endangered species list, now is your last chance.

The online public comment period ends today, and so far more than 3,300 people have weighed in.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says the grizzly population has risen to about 700 animals, enough to justify de-listing them.

But Glenn Hockett, volunteer president with the Gallatin Wildlife Association, says we shouldn't be in such a hurry to weaken protections for the bears.

"There's a lack of connectivity between the greater Yellowstone and other populations in the northern Continental Divide," says Hockett. "But as well, there's a lack of grizzly bears in a number of areas of very suitable habitat outside of the greater Yellowstone - in, for example, the Frank Church Wilderness in Idaho, as well as the Selway Bitterroot Wilderness."

The states of Idaho, Wyoming and Montana are already planning the rules for trophy hunts that would be allowed on the periphery of the park, if the bear is de-listed.

Comments can be entered online, just 'til the end of the day today, at regulations.gov.

Hockett says the bears are already being shot if they pass too close to ranches and pastures. He thinks the bears will be devalued even more if they are de-listed.

"We haven't provided the essential connectivity to these other areas and if we de-list the bear, some major barriers to the movements along those corridors will take precedence over the bear," he says.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will now consider the public comments and issue a final decision.

Suzanne Potter, Public News Service - ID