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Endangered Species Law and Policy

Tag Archives: Endangered

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Lists One Midwestern Butterfly as Threatened, Another as Endangered

Posted in Uncategorized

On October 24, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) published a final rule listing the Dakota skipper (Hesperia dacotae) as a threatened species and the Poweshiek skipperling (Oarisma poweshiek) as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act.  The Dakota skipper is found in Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Manitoba and Sasketchewan, and that… Continue Reading

Service Proposes to List Fisher DPS As Threatened

Posted in Listing

On October 6, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) issued a news release (pdf) announcing its proposal to list the West Coast Distinct Population Segment (West Coast DPS) of fisher (Pekanian pennanti) as threatened under the Federal Endangered Species Act (ESA), in part due to significant threats from illegal marijuana farming.  The fisher belongs to a family… Continue Reading

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Lists Two Texas Minnows, Acknowledges Impacts to Water Management Likely

Posted in Listing

On August 4, 2014, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announced its decision to list two small Texas minnows — the sharpnose shiner (Notropis oxyrhynchus) and smalleye shiner (N. buccula) — as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).  The two Texas minnows, which have been candidates species since 2002, measure less than 2… Continue Reading

D.C. District Court Holds Pre-Violation Notice Ineffective

Posted in Court Decisions

On June 23, 2014, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia affirmed the strict application of the Endangered Species Act’s (ESA) pre-litigation notice requirements, dismissing a lawsuit alleging that the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (Service) failed to timely act on a number of listing petitions because the violations stated in the… Continue Reading

House Approves Bill Requiring the Executive Branch to Report Fees Awarded To Prevailing Parties

Posted in Congress, Legislation

Yesterday, the House of Representatives approved the Open Book on Equal Access to Justice Act (H.R. 2919), which would amend existing law to require the Executive Branch to provide an annual report to Congress on the amount of fees and other expenses awarded to prevailing parties, other than the United States, in certain administrative proceedings and civil suits, including… Continue Reading

California Fish and Game Commission Delays Listing Decision for Gray Wolf

Posted in Listing

 The Los Angeles Times reports that the California Fish and Game Commission (Commission) unanimously voted to postpone a decision on whether to list the gray wolf (Canis lupus) under the California Endangered Species Act (CESA). As we previously reported, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife recommended in February 2014 that the Commission not list… Continue Reading

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Issues Revised Recovery Plan for the Pallid Sturgeon

Posted in Conservation

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) has announced the availability of a revised recovery plan for the pallid sturgeon (Scaphirhynchus albus), a species that is found in the Missouri and Mississippi River basins, has been described as having a "unique dinosaur-like appearance," and has been listed as endangered since 1990.  As summarized by the Service, the revised recovery plan updates… Continue Reading

With the Conclusion of the Shutdown, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Gets Back to Work

Posted in Listing

Getting back into the swing of things, earlier today the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service determined that the eastern small-footed bat (Myotis leibii) does not warrant listing at this time, and commented on its proposal to list the northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis) (pdf) as endangered under the Endangered Species Act.  The notice issued by the Service… Continue Reading

Impacts of Government Shutdown on Endangered Species

Posted in Fish & Wildlife Service

As reported earlier today by Emily Yehle of Greenwire, if the U.S. Government fails to avoid a government shutdown before tomorrow, a number of federal agencies, including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of the Interior are planning to "pull the plug on their online presence."  (E&ENewsPM, Sept. 30, 2013).  You may ask, what… Continue Reading

Congress Continues to Probe the Endangered Species Act

Posted in Congress

Yesterday, the House Committee on Natural Resources held a second hearing regarding implementation and impacts of the Endangered Species Act.  Today’s hearing was titled: Transparency and Sound Science Gone Extinct?: The impacts of the Obama Administration’s Closed-Door Settlement on Endangered Species and People.  In a summary description issued before the hearing, the Committee stated that it anticipated the hearing would "highlight how the lack… Continue Reading

District Court Awards Fees to ESA Defendant, Ordering Plaintiffs Jointly and Severally Liable

Posted in Court Decisions

On March 29, 2013, after more than 11 years of litigation, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia held that a defendant, as the prevailing party, was entitled to attorneys’ fees under the Endangered Species Act’s fee shifting provision.  See Animal Welfare Institute v. Feld Entertainment, Inc., No. 03-2006 (D.D.C. Mar. 29, 2013) (pdf). The fee provision states, in relevant part,… Continue Reading

Service Proposes to List Wolverine as Threatened Species

Posted in Listing

On February 1, 2013, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced its proposal to list the wolverine (Gulo gulo luscus) as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.  The proposed listing is the result of a court-ordered deadline established by a controversial settlement between the Service and two environmental organizations.  (See our posts from… Continue Reading

Court Vacates Critical Habitat Designation for Polar Bear

Posted in Court Decisions

On January 10, 2013, the United States District Court for the District of Alaska issued an order (pdf) vacating the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s critical habitat designation for the polar bear after concluding that the Service failed to comply with substantive and procedural requirements in the Endangered Species Act.  Specifically, the district court found that the administrative record produced… Continue Reading

D.C. Circuit Rejects Challenge to Controversial ESA Settlement

Posted in Court Decisions, Legal

On January 4, 2012, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia held (pdf) that Safari Club International (Safari Club) lacked standing to intervene as a matter of right in the litigation that resulted in two stipulated judgments establishing procedures and deadlines for reviewing listing and critical habitat determinations for 251 candidate species, thereby affirming the decision… Continue Reading

Lawsuit Filed Challenging Controversial Settlement

Posted in Litigation

On December 17, 2012, the National Association of Home Builders, the Olympia Master Builders, the Home Builder Association of Greater Austin, and the Texas Salamander Coalition, Inc., filed a lawsuit (pdf) against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Ken Salazar, in his official capacity, alleging that when the Service entered into stipulated settlements with WildEarth Guardians (pdf) and… Continue Reading

House Natural Resources Committee to Examine Endangered Species Act Reauthorization This Fall

Posted in Regulatory Reform

On July 27, 2011, House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings announced that the Committee will "move forward" in the fall to examine the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in an effort to reauthorize the law.  Chairman Hastings issued his statement shortly after the House passed an amendment offered by Rep. Norm Dicks to the FY 2012 Interior Appropriations… Continue Reading