HELENA, Mont. (AP) -- A federal judge in Missoula will hear oral arguments on June 15 on whether gray wolves in Montana and Idaho should be removed from the list of federally protected species.

U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy filed the paperwork Monday scheduling the hearing.

The hearing comes in a lawsuit filed by Earthjustice on behalf of 13 conservation and wildlife groups over whether wolves can be removed from protection under the Endangered Species Act in Montana and Idaho yet remain protected in Wyoming.

Wyoming plans to manage wolves as predators that can be shot on sight and the federal government says that does not afford the animals enough protection.

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Information from: Independent Record, http://www.helenair.com

Copyright 2010 The AP.

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