Wisconsin wolf hunt: Animal rights groups plans suit to stop it

FILE - A gray wolf is pictured howling in the snow at a wildlife park in Norway. (Photo by Wolfgang Kaehler/LightRocket via Getty Images)

A coalition of animal rights groups is planning to file a lawsuit Tuesday to stop Wisconsin’s wolf hunt this fall.

The action comes after the state Department of Natural Resources board this month set the quota for the fall hunt at 300 animals, disregarding pleas from multiple groups to cancel the season after hunters blew past their kill quota during a messy spring season. The DNR set the kill limit in February at 119 animals but hunters killed 218, angering conservationists and animal rights groups.

The DNR's last estimates put the wolf population at around 1,000 animals. Hunting opponents insist a fall hunt could cut the population in half. But Wisconsin law mandates that the DNR hold a hunt between November and February every year that the wolf isn't on the endangered species list.

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The animal rights groups working on the lawsuit include Animal Wellness Action, Friends of Wisconsin Wolf and Wildlife, Project Coyote and Animal & Earth Advocates.

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