Grizzly bears living in and around Yellowstone National Park will be returned to the federal endangered species list, bringing an indefinite end to the hunting of them in Wyoming and Idaho. The ruling was made by Judge Dana Christensen, who sits on a district court in Montana. Yellowstone’s grizzlies are particularly important because their numbers are increasing: There’s now more than 700 within park, up from a low of around 135 just three decades ago, The Guardian reports. Tim Preso, who served as lead attorney in a case challenging the removal of protection for bears, called the ruling “momentous.” Leaders of the Wyoming Game and Fish Department wanted to authorize the first hunt of bears in two generations, which would have allowed up to 22 to be “taken” this year. Preso said he expects that lawyers for the states will appeal Christensen’s ruling.
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