Feds float wolverine protections

Wolverines are facing new protections from the federal government.

The Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) on Monday proposed to list the North American wolverine as a threatened species. The decision follows a court order to reopen the case.

The status of wolverines has been in flux since 2013, when the FWS originally proposed to protect the species. 

Amid “substantial disagreement” over the scientific evidence required to support the protections, the FWS withdrew the proposal a year later.

The Center for Biological Diversity, WildEarth Guardians and the Defenders of Wildlife then sued the FWS to follow through with the protections, and earlier this year a federal court agreed, sending the case back to the agency for reconsideration.

"In effect, the court’s action returns the process to the proposed rule stage, and the status of the wolverine ... has effectively reverted to that of a proposed species,” the FWS wrote.

The public has 30 days to comment.