Recent Press Releases

Washington, D.C. —  Senator John Thune today sent a letter to U.S. Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne, expressing his concerns with the impending reintroduction of the black-footed ferret and requesting that, prior to the release of black-footed ferrets in Wind Cave National Park, the Interior Department provide written confirmation of specific guarantees to landowners who will be impacted. Senator Thune also included a letter from the Fall River County Commissioners that describes several concerns shared by a coalition of residents, landowners, and public officials in the Wind Cave National Park area. A copy of Senator Thune's letter to Secretary Kempthorne is available here.

"I've written the Interior Secretary to ensure he is aware of the serious concerns of area residents and landowners who will be impacted by the reintroduction of black-footed ferrets into the Wind Cave National Park," Thune said. "It's critical that the Interior Department gives due consideration to these legitimate concerns.

"I've also asked Secretary Kempthorne to provide impacted landowners with a list of specific guarantees, including federal financial support should the release of black-footed ferrets cause property loss or damage."

Additionally, Senator Thune sent a letter to Secretary Kempthorne in December requesting that he extend the comment period for the Black-footed Ferret Reintroduction Plan for at least 30 days. The Secretary granted this request, allowing more questions and concerns to be voiced.