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. Grizzly Bears No Longer Threatened In Famous US Park

File photo of Grizzly Bears in Yellowstone National Park.
by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) March 22, 2007
Grizzly bears in the Yellowstone National Park have been taken off the threatened species list, US officials said Thursday.

A statement on the US Fish and Wildlife Service website said there were now more than 500 grizzlies in the park, which straddles the northwestern states of Wyoming, Idaho and Montana, compared with a figure believed to range between 136 and 312 when they were declared threatened in 1975.

"The grizzly's remarkable comeback is the result of years of intensive cooperative recovery efforts between federal and state agencies, conservation groups, and individuals," Deputy Interior Secretary Lynn Scarlett said.

"The grizzly is a large predator that requires a great deal of space, and conserving such animals is a challenge in today's world."

The US Fish and Wildlife Service said grizzly bears in Yellowstone would now be removed from the "threatened" species list. However, four other grizzly populations in the lower 48 contiguous US states have not recovered and would continue to be protected as threatened species.

The statement said since the 1990s the Yellowstone grizzly population has grown at a rate of four to seven percent per year. The Interior Department had first proposed plans to delist the bears two years ago.

Source: Agence France-Presse

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