Circuit court declares Northern Rockies wolf-hunting case moot

2012-11-09T11:04:00Z 2012-11-09T23:53:53Z Circuit court declares Northern Rockies wolf-hunting case mootBy ROB CHANEY Missoulian The Billings Gazette
November 09, 2012 11:04 am  • 

MISSOULA - A part of the legal fight over hunting wolves in the Northern Rockies officially disappeared from the record when the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals declared the case moot this week.

In 2010, federal District Court Judge Donald Molloy ruled that gray wolves were improperly stripped of Endangered Species Act protection in Montana and Idaho.

Later that year, Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., got an amendment through Congress declaring wolves in the northern Rocky Mountains a recovered species under the ESA and blocking any further legal review.

Molloy, in a separate decision, agreed that Congress had the power to shield the issue from court review even though he thought such power was unconstitutional. Montana and Idaho resumed public wolf hunts in 2011.

On Wednesday, a three-judge panel of the 9th Circuit granted a motion by the states of Montana and Idaho along with several private hunting and livestock organizations that declared Molloy's wolf ruling "dismissed, vacated and remanded." They ordered Molloy to consider the underlying case as moot.

"The bottom line is environmental groups cannot refer to the Molloy ruling as precedent since the 9th Circuit Court vacated it and wolves in Idaho and Montana remain under state management," Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation spokesman Mark Holyoak said in an email on Thursday.

Copyright 2015 The Billings Gazette. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

More from the Gazette

Missoula County judge retiring May 1

11 hours agoLoading…
Highlands mine could mean primary, secondary jobs for Butte

Highlands mine could mean primary, secondary jobs for Butte

15 hours ago Photos

Photos

Loading…
Legitimate questions and politics collide with welfare whistleblowers

Legitimate questions and politics collide with welfare whistleblowers

21 hours ago Photos

Photos

Loading…
Taxing and spending: How much money is coming in and how will it be spent

Taxing and spending: How much money is coming in and how will it be spent

January 24, 2015 6:45 pm Photos

Photos

Loading…

Missoula federal building studied for possible VA clinic

January 24, 2015 4:00 pmLoading…
Helena man sentenced to 50 years for 11th drunk-driving offense

Helena man sentenced to 50 years for 11th drunk-driving offense

January 24, 2015 11:00 amLoading…
Missoula native Darian Stevens seeking X Games medal

Missoula native Darian Stevens seeking X Games medal

January 24, 2015 10:30 amLoading…
Carroll Saints help woman, child from burning car

Carroll Saints help woman, child from burning car

January 24, 2015 10:19 amLoading…

Follow The Billings Gazette

Popular Stories

Get weekly ads via e-mail

Deals & Offers

Featured Businesses