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Expanded wolf hunt flying through Montana’s Legislature

HELENA, MONT. — A proposal to expand the state’s wolf hunt is being fast-tracked through the Legislature and shortly will be sent to the governor’s desk for his signature.

The Montana Senate on Thursday suspended its rules so it could take initial and final votes on the same day on the measure that already had overwhelmingly cleared the House. The Senate backed it 45-4.

House Bill 73 lets the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks increase the number of wolves one hunter can take, allows for electronic calls, and removes a requirement to wear hunter orange outside general deer and elk season.

The measure also prohibits the state wildlife agency from banning wolf hunts in areas around national parks. Its swift passage would allow the changes to take effect during the hunting season that’s currently under way.

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So, Montana’s lawmakers were highly offended that state officials tried to apply common sense and defend scientific research by putting a buffer around a small part of Yellowstone. The nerve of those people! Can’t let science get in the way of making those special interests happy.

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