Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Federal Court Refuses to Block Yellowstone Bison Hazing

Posted By on Wed, May 22, 2013 at 9:09 AM

Three Federal Appeals Court judges refused to block the use of helicopters to haze wild bison May 20, according to a news brief filed by the Associated Press.

Ninth District U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals judges denied an injunction filed by Helena, Mont. conservation group the Alliance for the Wild Rockies, which claimed using helicopters at low-altitudes to haze bison also affects the area's grizzly bear population and should be stopped.

In an appeal to U.S. District Judge Charles Lovell's March ruling, the group asked for the emergency injunction in an effort to block this season's bison hazing by helicopter to drive the animals back into Yellowstone National Park, according to the AP.

But on May 21, Montana Department of Livestock spokesman Steve Merritt said the operation to drive bison back into the National Park, which began in May, was nearing completion, and that the helicopter would likely be grounded for the rest of the operation.

"We're probably done with the helicopter for the year, but we've always felt the helicopter was one of the more expeditious, efficient ways to move bison back into the park," Merritt said.

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