Wildlife official: Gray wolf population rises in Wisconsin - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Wildlife official: Gray wolf population rises in Wisconsin

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 MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A Wisconsin wildlife official says the state's gray wolf population has gone up by about 13 percent in the past year.

David MacFarland with the Department of Natural Resources tells the Wisconsin State Journal that a preliminary estimate says there are 746 gray wolves in the state.

It's the first increase in the estimated population since hunting and trapping of gray wolves was legalized in 2012. MacFarland said last year's lower kill limit contributed to the population increase.

In December, a federal judge ruled that gray wolves should regain protected status in the western Great Lakes region, overturning a 2012 decision by the Obama administration. The judge's order banned further wolf hunting and trapping in Wisconsin, Minnesota and Michigan.

State and federal officials have worked to override the judge's ruling.

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