ANCHORAGE - E-mails obtained by The Associated Press reveal a fissure that turned into a divide between federal and state wildlife managers over a plan to kill wolves in a national refuge in Alaska.
The state and federal governments have a long history of working cooperatively behind closed doors to manage the state's vast wildlife resources. But the dispute over the caribou herd on Unimak Island ended in a public showdown in court, with the state losing.
E-mails show that cooperation had been ongoing for months before the state abruptly announced in May it was going to the island in the Aleutian chain to undertake predator control measures to help a caribou herd.
Once the state vowed to go forward with its plan, the relationship between the two agencies quickly soured. The federal agency then became focused on a way to stop the state.