State Appeals Court throws out lawsuit against DNR wolf hunt

The Minnesota Court of Appeals has dismissed a lawsuit by groups trying to stop the state’s wolf hunt.

The opinion issued Tuesday morning says the groups seeking to stop the hunt — the Center for Biological Diversity and Howling for Wolves — don’t have standing to bring the action.

Said the ruling by a three-judge panel (PDF):

In sum, petitioners do not assert that the wolf rules cause unique harm to their aesthetic interest in wolves or the unlawful use of public funds. Petitioners therefore lack standing to challenge the wolf rules in this court.

The groups filed the lawsuit after the state DNR created rules for hunting of wolves in Minnesota, soon after U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service removed Minnesota’s wolves from the federal government’s threatened and endangered species list in January, 2012. The lawsuit claims the DNR had adopted the rules in violation of statutory rule-making procedures.

The groups had earlier tried to stop the state’s wolf hunt last fall and winter, but the courts wouldn’t prevent the hunting and trapping season, and hunters and trappers killed about 413 wolves, out of an estimated population of 3,000.

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