Senator Cynthia Lummis has introduced the Grizzly Bear State Management Act of 2021 alongside Senator John Barrasso of Wyoming, Senators Mike Crapo and James Risch of Idaho and Senator Steve Daines of Montana. This bill would remove grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem from the Endangered Species List and shift management of the grizzlies to wildlife scientists in the states.
In 1975, there were 136 grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. In 2019, there were 728 bears, evidence of an effective conservation effort. At this point, grizzly numbers have been in the 700s for a number of years.
The Interagency Grizzly Bear Study Team’s analysis suggests that the park is at or near its ecological carrying capacity for grizzly bears. In making the bill’s introduction, Lummis remarked, “It’s time to remove the grizzlies in this area from the Endangered Species List and allow wildlife scientists in Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho to manage the populations according to science.” The companion version of this legislation was previously introduced in the House by Representative Liz Cheney of Wyoming.