BOISE, Idaho (AP) — The U.S. Forest Service has notified a conservation group that Idaho officials won't use a hired hunter to kill wolves in the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness this winter. Earthjustice in a statement says it received the notification Wednesday from the federal agency as required by the settlement of a federal lawsuit. The letter from Forest Service officials to Earthjustice says the Idaho Department of Fish and Game notified the federal agency of its decision on Friday.

The state agency's wildlife bureau chief, Jeff Gould, says state officials are concentrating on a statewide elk study rather than wolves. Earthjustice on behalf of four environmental groups filed the lawsuit in January 2014, a winter in which a state hunter killed seven wolves in the wilderness area.

More From Kool 96.5