ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — U.S. wildlife managers will have to revisit a contentious rule that governs management of Mexican gray wolves roaming the American Southwest.
The revision was ordered Monday by a federal judge in Arizona who determined that the rule adopted in 2015 fails to further the conservation of the endangered predators.
The current rule will remain in effect until the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service issues a revamped version or addresses deficiencies outlined in the court order.
The Fish and Wildlife Service is reviewing the order.
Environmentalists had argued the rule arbitrarily limited the population, banned the animals from suitable habitat and loosened provisions against killing them in the wild.
A survey done over the winter showed there were at least 114 wolves in the wild in Arizona and New Mexico.