Interior Dept declines to reimplement grizzly protections near Yellowstone: report

Interior Dept declines to reimplement grizzly protections near Yellowstone: report
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The Interior Department will not restore long-standing federal protections for grizzly bears in and around Yellowstone National Park. 

The decision disregards a federal appeals court ruling that said that the Interior Department needed to consider how species' recoveries were affected by the loss of their habitats, The Associated Press reported

That case involved gray wolves in the Great Lakes region. Both grizzly bear and gray wolf populations have recovered somewhat from the threat of extermination, but exist largely outside historical habitats.

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The Interior Department's decision comes as some states are planning public hunts of grizzly bears in the Yellowstone area.

The Interior Department said that it disagreed with the court's ruling because the grizzly population in Yellowstone had recovered, and that grizzly bears outside the Yellowstone area remained protected, the AP reported. 

Conservation groups, however, have argued that allowing bear hunts would ultimately prevent grizzly bears from repopulating areas that they once inhabited, because it would further diminish the population.