Public comment deadline on grizzlies protection in Montana approaches

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MISSOULA, Mont The deadline is approaching for public comment on a plan to lift federal protections from grizzly bears in the Northern Rocky Mountains comments on the plan are due by Friday.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed habitat-based recovery criteria to monitor how an estimated 1,000 grizzlies are recovering in the mountains between Glacier National Park and Missoula. If approved, those criteria would guide Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks and several federal agencies in managing the bears if they lose Endangered Species Act protection.

A population of about 700 grizzlies in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem around Yellowstone National Park was delisted in 2017 and turned over to state management. That decision has been challenged in federal court, though.