Newly passed legislation that would allow Wyoming bison and cattle ranchers to use any method of state-approved livestock identification — rather than federally mandated eartags — could soon be challenged by federal policy.

The policy may erode a recent victory by Wyoming’s ranching industry that earned them more autonomy over tracking their animals, and industry groups are watching developments closely.

In 2019, ranchers in eastern Wyoming and Montana filed suit against the U.S. Department of Agriculture over a new mandate requiring ranchers to use a specific type of high-tech eartag tracking device when transporting stock across state lines.

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