After federal protections for the gray wolves were restrained, Judge Jeffery White of the US district court of Oakland, California, ruled in favor of reinstating the protection last Thursday. He found that gray wolf populations would not be able to bounce back without protection.
Now it will be illegal to hunt and kill the gray wolf in the 47 states that are not under state authority. This species has been brought back from near extinction, and with the new protection (under the Endangered Species Act), they have a possibility to rebound again. Studies confirm that active hunting by humans is a significant force threatening the species.
The gray wolf plays a vital role in their ecosystem, and they are necessary predators who keep deer and elk populations from overgrowing. If the populations get out of hand, the elk and deer will overeat the important vegetation in their habitats. Thanks to the gray wolf, even vehicle collisions, in particular areas where deer populations have been abundant and frequently crossroads, have decreased.