Iowa DNR officer dies of COVID-19

 January 9, 2021 11:51 pmTravis Breese

DES MOINES, Iowa (KWWL) – The Iowa Department of Natural Resources confirms one of its conservation officers has died of complications from COVID-19.

Steve Reighard died of COVID complications on Friday, according to Iowa DNR Director of Communications Alex Murphy. Reighard had been in the hospital for “a few weeks”, Murphy said.

Reighard was a conservation officer in Dickinson County in Northwestern Iowa since 2012. He is the first DNR employee to die of the virus.

Iowa DNR officers held a ceremonial car parade to honor Reighard on Saturday, which was shared on the Iowa Fish and Game Conservation Officers Association’s facebook page.

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Ontario taking steps to further protect deer, elk and moose from disease

Chelsea PapineauCTV Northern Ontario Digital Content Specialist

@ChelseapCTV Contact

Published Thursday, December 17, 2020 11:15AM ESTLast Updated Thursday, December 17, 2020 4:09PM EST

CTV Northern Ontario: Deer helpers

SUDBURY — The Ontario government has made changes to the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act to protect deer, elk and moose in the province from chronic wasting disease (CWD) found in Quebec and neighbouring states.

Members of the cervid family, which include deer, elk, moose and caribou, are affected by this progressive and fatal disease.

While it has not yet been found in Ontario, the province felt it necessary to make these changes to protect wildlife and support hunting after CWD was found in a Quebec deer farm near the Ontario border in 2018. The disease has also been found in all five states that border the province.

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Biden administration begins to identify key environmental leaders

By Laura Bies

Posted on January 5, 2021

 President-elect Biden has nominated Rep. Deb Haaland for Secretary of the Interior. Credit: AFGE

The Biden administration will officially take office on Jan. 20, but it has already announced who it will nominate for key positions. In addition, its transition teams have been meeting with career agency employees to better understand agency operations and challenges.

During an event on Dec. 19, the incoming administration announced a slate of nominees for environment, energy and climate jobs.

Rep. Deb Haaland (D-N.M.) will be nominated by president-elect Biden for Secretary of the Interior. If confirmed by the Senate, Halaand would be the first Native American to be a member of the Cabinet. She would be the 54th Interior Secretary and only the third female to serve in that position. Haaland currently serves as the vice chair of the House Committee on Natural Resources.

“As our country faces the impacts of climate change and environmental injustice, the Interior Department has a role to address these challenges,” said Rep. Halland during a Dec. 19 event, Rep. She also said that “we will ensure that the decisions at Interior will once again be driven by science.”

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Wisconsin Wolf Season


MADISON, Wis. – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) today announced the official wolf season will begin Nov. 6, 2021. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will delist gray wolves from the federal list of endangered species on Jan. 4, 2021, returning management authority to the lower 48 states and tribes. Under Wisconsin law, when the wolf is delisted, the state’s annual hunting and trapping seasons shall resume.

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Colorado Is Getting Its Wolves Back After Voters Approve Historic Law

George Dvorsky Nov. 6, 2020

Voters in Colorado have approved Proposition 114, forcing the state government to reintroduce the gray wolf. It’s the first time in U.S. history that a ballot measure win has obliged a state government to bring back a species that disappeared due to human actions.

With more than 90% of the vote counted, opponents of Proposition 114 have admitted defeat, reports the Denver Post. With the referendum won, state wildlife officials in Colorado will be required to develop an evidence-based recovery plan for wolves, which haven’t called the state home for decades. The proposition stipulates that grey wolves be restored to the mountainous portions of the state west of the continental divide by the end of 2023, with input from the public.

The passing of this ballot measure marks an important milestone, as it’s the first time that voters in a U.S. state have forced a state wildlife agency to restore a species through a referendum. That’s not a small thing, and it reflects a growing push to restore the balance of nature.

But it was close. Proposition 114 squeaked by with the support of 50.4% of those who voted for so-called “paws on the ground.” Denver and Boulder currently account for the 9% of votes that still need to be counted, but those regions are expected to favor the bill.

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