The Idaho Fish and Game Commission has approved an updated “Memorandum of Agreement” between Idaho, Wyoming and Montana regarding state grizzly bear management commitments in support of delisting the bears in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Wyoming and Montana’s commissions had already approved the memorandum.
The agreement defines the process by which the three states will “coordinate the management and allocation of discretionary mortality of grizzly bears in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem to ensure the long-term genetic health, viability, and sustainability of the ecosystem’s grizzly bear population.”
It updates a similar 2016 agreement by adding language to protect genetic diversity within the ecosystem by moving at least two grizzly bears from outside the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem into the area by 2025, unless migration from outside the ecosystem is detected in the interim.
The Yellowstone grizzly population has met federal population recovery goals since the early 2000s, but a series of lawsuits has prevented the bears from being removed from the Endangered Species list.