38°FOvercastFull Forecast
Shaw Media Auctions

New law protects bears, cougars and wolves

Published: Tuesday, Aug. 26, 2014 1:15 a.m. CST
(Earleen Hinton/ehinton@shawmedia.com)
A black bear was found in a tree June 18 southwest of Mount Morris off Lowell Park Road. A crowd of about 20 people who had been watching the bear today had to be broken up by police.

CHICAGO (AP) – Gov. Pat Quinn has signed a law adding black bears, cougars and wolves to Illinois’ list of protected species.

All three species still are rare in Illinois, but wildlife officials expect them to become more common and wanted a way to protect them.

There have been sightings of black bears, cougars and wolves in the Sauk Valley in the past 2 years.

Jack Darin is director of the Sierra Club’s Illinois chapter. He says the possible return of the large predators “is a sign that decades of investment and effort to restore natural habitat in Illinois and the Midwest are paying off.”

The Department of Natural Resources says the law will allow it to manage the animals for protection and public safety.

Wildlife officials say there’s been an uptick in the number of bears, cougars and wolves entering Illinois, mostly from Wisconsin.

The law takes effect on Jan. 1.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

National video

Reader Poll

Rock Falls is considering a ban on leaf burning. Should the city finally take that step?
Yes. Sterling and Dixon have had bans for years. It’s time for Rock Falls to impose a ban.
No. It would be too great a burden for homeowners to dispose of fallen leaves in other ways.
Not sure
No opinion