Montana wildlife managers want a 40-percent reduction in the quota for bobcats killed by trappers in the southwestern portion of the state because their are signs the population is declining.

The move would reduce the region's annual trapping quota from 250 to 150 bobcats. It comes after trappers reported seeing fewer bobcats and rabbits, the cats' main prey.

State wildlife commissioners gave preliminary approval to the reduction. There will be a final decision in August.

The bobcat quota for southwestern Montana has fluctuated between 100 and 325 animals since the mid-1990s as state officials have struggled to find the right balance between trapping and sustaining the population.

(The Associated Press Contributed To This Story)

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