Lawsuit challenging how DNR handled wolf season goes to appeals court

  • Updated: April 2, 2013 - 7:46 PM

A lawsuit that claims the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources didn’t properly follow its own rules when it established a wolf hunting and trapping season last year will be heard Wednesday at the Minnesota Court of Appeals.

The DNR has said that the public had plenty of opportunity to comment during the legislative process that established the wolf season in 2012.

The Center for Biodiversity and Howling for Wolves filed the lawsuit last year.

“The state rushed to issue wolf-hunting and trapping rules without giving people a real chance to voice their opinions,” said Collette Adkins Giese, a Minneapolis-based attorney at the center.

The lawsuit is one of two involving Minnesota’s wolves. Four groups also filed suit earlier this year against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service seeking to put wolves back on the federal endangered species list.

Hunters and trappers killed 412 wolves in the state’s first regulated wolf season. The DNR is conducting a wolf population survey. The last survey, done in 2008, showed a winter wolf population of about 3,000.

Did you know?

And then there was the angler near Hibbing who didn’t remove his fish house from a lake by the deadline. After being contacted by conservation officer Don Bozovsky, the owner decided it was easier to burn the house instead of move it. But it’s going to cost more. Bozovsky found the remains, and now the angler faces numerous violations, including littering, burning prohibited materials and burning a structure on state waters.

• An ATVer was stopped near Isle, Minn., by conservation officer Chris Tetrault, who asked to see the vehicle’s registration. The driver opened a side compartment to look for it, and a walleye — taken out of season — fell out. Enforcement action was taken.

• The spring waterfowl migration is in full swing, and some goose hunters are out in southern and western Minnesota hunting the birds.

doug smith

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