ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - Gov. Mark Dayton is consulting with his Department of Natural Resources chief on how the state should respond to a federal ruling that outlaws hunting of gray wolves.

Dayton says he's unsure how active Minnesota would be in any appeal of the federal judge's pre-Christmas decision, which reinstated federal protection for the species in Minnesota, Michigan and Wisconsin. It's halted the hunt that had gone on for two years to manage the wolf population.

He said Monday he planned to meet later in the day with DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr about next steps.

The governor says the DNR needs power to manage the wolf population so the animal doesn't pose too great a threat to other wildlife and livestock.