Feds see improved grizzly numbers as crucial ESA decision looms

Some big grizzly bears are coming soon, and in numbers at least the iconic species looks solid.

In two separate congressional hearings this week, a top career Fish and Wildlife Service employee and the deputy Interior secretary who oversees the agency shed more light on the long-awaited assessments of whether some grizzly populations still require endangered species protection.

On Tuesday, Fish and Wildlife Service official Stephen Guertin assured Rep. Harriet Hageman (R-Wyo.) that the agency plans to announce “by the end of this month” a decision on ESA status of the grizzly bears around Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. The the state of Wyoming produced in January 2022 to remove the population.

Guertin, the agency’s deputy director for program management and policy, did not telegraph what the decision will be. However, he cited good signs in the grizzly population living in what is known as the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.

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