By TODD RICHMOND
MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin wildlife officials have released their first new wolf management plan in almost a quarter-century but it doesn’t establish any statewide population goals. The Department of Natural Resources adopted a plan in 1999 that called for capping the statewide wolf population at 350 animals. Wolf hunters have long used that number to justify generous harvest quotas. The draft plan the DNR released Thursday does not include any statewide population goal. Instead it recommends evaluating conditions in each of the state’s six wolf hunting zones and deciding whether to reduce the local population, keep it stable or allow it to grow. A federal judge in February restored endangered species protections for wolves across most of the country.
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