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Gray Wolves, Black Bears, And Cougars Now Protected In Illinois

Jitze Couperus (flickr.com/photos/jitze1942) (CC BY 2.0)

Gray wolves, American black bears, and cougars (or mountain lions) are now protected species under Illinois law.Governor Pat Quinn signed legislation today that adds the species to the state's Wildlife Code.

The measure allows the Illinois Department of Natural Resources to create protocols regarding the animals. Landowners can apply for permits to remove unwanted animals that are not causing immediate threat.

The addition takes effect on January 1, 2015.