The Wyoming Game and Fish Department is beginning a series of public meetings Wednesday, November 8, to discuss state management of grizzly bears. The Interior Department announced in June of this year that Yellowstone-area grizzly bears would be taken off the endangered species list.
As Wyoming transitions to its role as the primary protector of the large mammal, the Game and Fish Department hopes to start a conversation with the public discussing questions and concerns about state management. The plan is to have biologists on hand to answer any questions.
Brian Nesvik, Chief Game Warden of the WGFD, said those supervising the meetings will take note of any common themes that arise.
“This is more focused on, okay now, we have a de-listed grizzly bear in Wyoming and what do you want to see as far as priorities as we move forward with grizzly management,” he said.
Nesvik said it’s not part of the normal process for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department to hold public meetings like this when a species is moved to state management. But he said there was enough public interest around the grizzly bear, that it felt necessary.
"This was a good opportunity to go out and kind of listen more than anything to what the public has to say about how we execute or implement the Wyoming grizzly bear management plan,” he said.
The department has organized eight meetings throughout the month to discuss state management with the last one on December 4 in Lander. All meeting times and locations can be found here.