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On August 6, 2015, the California Fish and Game Commission (Commission) voted to list the southern Sierra Nevada evolutionarily significant unit of the fisher (Pekania pennati) as a threatened species under the California Endangered Species Act, but determined not to list the northern California evolutionarily significant unit.  In doing so, the Commission followed the recommendation of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (Department).

According to the Department’s status review, [n]ative populations of fishers currently occur in Canada, the western United ...

Whether dealing with water or with endangered species directly, there have been a number of recent developments that are worth keeping on your radar.  Below is a quick summary of some of the more significant items:

July 16, 2015 - The House of Representative, in a largely partisan vote, passed H.R. 2898, the Western Water and American Food Security Act of 2015, by a vote of  245-176.  The Act, which is intended to ease some of the effects of the unprecedented drought gripping California, requires, among other things, for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the National ...

On July 1, 2015, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) published notice of its 90-day findings on petitions to list 31 species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).  Of these 31 species, all of which occur in the United States, the Service made positive 90-day findings on 21 petitions.  A positive finding on a listing petition prompts a 12-month review of each species by the Service to determine whether listing is warranted.  Of the remaining ten petitions, the Service concluded that nine petitions failed to provide substantial information demonstrating that listing action may be warranted.  Most species addressed in the findings originated from a 53-species mega-petition filed by the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) in July 2012.  If the Service finalizes its May 21, 2015 proposed rule to revise the regulations for species listing petitions, multi-species petitions such as the one filed by CBD will no longer be accepted by the Service.

Perhaps most notably, the Service’s publication included a denial of the petition to reclassify or downlist the gray wolf (Canis lupis) from its current status as endangered to threatened.  Twenty-two petitioners (including the Humane Society of the United States, CBD, and the Sault Sainte Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians) signed the 2015 petition requesting reclassification of the gray wolf (excluding the Mexican wolf subspecies (Canis lupus baileyi) throughout the conterminous United States).  The Service first concluded that the petition failed to provide substantial information indicating that the population proposed for reclassification may qualify as a distinct population segment.  The Service acknowledged that this finding alone was enough to deny the petition for reclassification, but stated that the status of the gray wolf has been a source of significant controversy over the past few years, and due to the controversy, also concluded that the petition did not provide substantial information indicating that the gray wolf at large would qualify as threatened rather than endangered.

Posted in Listing

Today, in response to a petition to list (pdf) filed by the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) in October 2014, the California Fish and Game Commission (Commission) determined not to make the tricolored blackbird (agelaius tricolor) a candidate for listing under the California Endangered Species Act (CESA).  As we reported, the Commission previously — in December 2014 — decided to list the species on an emergency basis principally on the basis of the petition and without the benefit of input from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and interested parties.  The ...

On Tuesday, May 26, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit rejected (pdf) the National Association of Home Builders’ and three other associations’ (collectively, NAHB) challenge to separate settlements between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) and two environmental organizations. The settlements direct the Service to make listing decisions on 251 species by specified dates.  The Court of Appeals affirmed a district court’s decision that NAHB lacked standing to raise its challenge.

As we previously reported, the district court ...

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While a number of Endangered Species Act (ESA) reform bills continue to wind their way through Congress (see our May 6, 2015 post), yesterday, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) announced their own plan to "increase regulatory predictability, increase stakeholder engagement, and improve science and transparency" when acting on petitions to list, uplist, downlist, or delist a species, as well as petitions to revise critical habitat designations.  Rather than revising the ESA itself, as some in Congress ...

On April 2, 2015, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) issued a final rule (pdf) listing the northern long-eared bat (Myotis septentrionalis) as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).  The Service determined that there are several factors affecting the species, but none as severe and immediate to its persistence as the disease known as white-nose syndrome (WNS).  The Service found that WNS is the predominant threat to the northern long-eared bat and, in the absence of WNS, the species would not be experiencing the dramatic decline that it has since WNS emerged.

The ...

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After a relatively quiet start to the year, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS)  have issued findings and rules regarding the proposed listings of four separate species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) over the last two days.  NMFS issued a 90-day finding on a petition to list the Gulf of Mexico population of Bryde's whale (Balaenoptera edeni) on April 6, 2015.  FWS issued a 12-month finding on a petition to list the Humboldt marten (Martes caurina humboldtensis) and proposed to list two species of crayfish - the Big Sandy crayfish ...

On March 27, 2015, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) accepted two petitions asking NMFS to list the Porbeagle shark (Lamna nasus) as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act either throughout the entirety of its global range, or as distinct population segments (DPS) occurring in the Northwest Atlantic, the Northeast Atlantic, and the Mediterranean.  (80 Fed. Reg. 16,356 [pdf].)  The petitions, filed separately by Wild Earth Guardians and the Humane Society of the United States, were originally rejected as not warranted by NMFS in July 2010.  Both ...

On March 3, 2015, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) issued two Federal Register notices – a 90-day finding on a petition (pdf) to list the Common thresher shark (Alopias vulpinus) as either threatened or endangered, and a proposed rule to list  (pdf) the Tanzanian distinct population segment (DPS) of the African Coelacanth (Latimeria chalumnae) as a threatened species.

On August 26, 2014, Friends of Animals petitioned NMFS to list the Common thresher shark as endangered or threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), or, in the alternative, to delineate six ...

On February 10, 2015, the National Marine Fisheries Service and the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration ("Services") issued a final rule (pdf) to include captive killer whales in the Southern Resident killer whale distinct population segment (DPS) of killer whales (Orcinus orca). The DPS has been listed as endangered under the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA) since 2005, but the listing excluded whales held in captivity. In January 2013, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals petitioned the Services to remove the exclusion and extend the protections of ...

The Transportation Research Bureau ("TRB"), a division of the National Research Council within the National Academies, has released a report entitled Innovative Airport Responses to Threatened and Endangered Species (pdf).  The report is intended to assist airport sponsors and operators in addressing federally listed species issues on or near their facilities.  The introduction to the report includes the following summary of its contents:

"ACRP Report 122 first introduces relevant regulations and then provides a discussion of potential areas of conflict between ...

Last week, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) published three new rules, continuing its flurry of activity from December as we previously noted here and here.  Below are the latest final and proposed rules issued by the Service.

January 16, 2015 – The Service issued a final rule listing the Mexican wolf (Canis lupus baileyi) (pdf) as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).  The Mexican wolf is a subspecies of the gray wolf that was listed as endangered in the southwestern United States and Mexico in April of 1976.  When the gray wolf was listed as endangered in 1978, it ...

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Coming in just under the wire for the New Year, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) and National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) published new rules today, making December a very busy month for Endangered Species Act (ESA) listing decisions. Below are the latest items from FWS and NMFS to be published in 2014.

December 31, 2014 - FWS issued a 90-day finding on a petition to list the Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus plexippus) as a threatened species under the ESA.  FWS found that the information and sources cited in the petition present substantial commercial or scientific ...

The National Marine Fisheries Service (Service) recently published (pdf) its final rule listing five species of sawfish as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).  The final rule contains the Service’s determination that the narrow sawfish (Anoxypristis cuspidate), dwarf sawfish (Pristis clavata), largetooth sawfish (collectively, Pristis pristis), green sawfish (Pristis zijsron) and the non-U.S. distinct population segment (DPS) of smalltooth sawfish (Pristis pectinata) are endangered species under the ESA.  The Service determined that these five ...

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Although there were some notable downperiods when it came to Endangered Species Act news over the past twelve months, the past few weeks have been anything but slow.  Below are a few of the more recent newsworthy items that have rolled off the presses:

December 11, 2014 - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service issues a final rule listing the rufa red knot (Calidris canutus rufa) as a threatened species.  The rufa red knot is a migratory shorebird that breeds in the Canadian Artic, and winters in parts of the United States, the Carribean, and South America.  The final rule states that the ...

On December 5, 2014 the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) released its Fiscal Year 2014 Threatened and Endangered Species Candidate list.  Under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), when the USFWS either receives a petition from a third party to list a species as threatened or endangered, or when the USFWS decides of its own accord to evaluate a species for listing, it is required to issue a 90 day finding on the potential listing, and then a 12-month finding, followed by a determination on the species' status.  Forty species received final listing decisions this year.  USFWS may delay a ...

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Today, in response to a petition to list (pdf) filed by the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) in October 2014, the California Fish and Game Commission (Commission) extended protection to the tricolored blackbird (agelaius tricolor) on an emergency basis under the California Endangered Species Act.  The Commission previously -- in 2005 -- denied a petition from CBD to list the species.

While the tricolored blackbird is endemic to California, it is distributed through much of the State.  Census data on the species has been collected periodically over the past 20 years.  The ...

On November 12, 2014, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (Service) listed as threatened and designated over 1.4 million acres of critical habitat for Gunnison sage-grouse (Centrocercus minimus), the smaller cousin of the greater sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus).  The Gunnison sage-grouse’s (Gunnison) current range is limited to southwestern Colorado and southeastern Utah.

The regulations came as a blow to the State of Colorado, landowners, and others who have devoted considerable resources to the conservation of the Gunnison Basin population’s sagebrush ...

On November 4, 2014, the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona issued an opinion in Ctr. for Biological Diversity v. Jewell,2014 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 157436(D. Ariz.Nov. 4, 2014) finding that the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) did not abuse its discretion by finding that the Sonoran Desert population of bald eagles is not a distinct population segment. The Bald eagle was originally listed as an endangered species under the precursor to the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in 1967, after FWS found that less than 500 breeding pairs remained in 1963. Under ESA protections, the bald ...

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On November 5, 2014, the National Marine Fisheries Service issued a 12-month finding (pdf) for the queen conch (Strombus gigas), concluding that the species prized for its meat and shell does not warrant listing because it is "not currently in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range nor is it likely to become so within the foreseeable future."  WildEarth Guardians had submitted the 2012 petition requesting that the queen conch be listed, citing overfishing as the primary threat to the species.   In the 12-month finding, however, the ...

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) recently announced that it is proposing to list the African lion (Pantera leo leo) as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The proposed listing is the result of a 2011 petition to list the species as endangered. In the Service’s 12-month finding on that petition, the Service determined that listing the African lion as threatened throughout its range under the ESA is warranted.

The African lion has a large range and its population has ten strongholds totaling approximately 24,000 lions, which is 70 percent of the current ...

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Posted in Listing

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 the Poweshiek skipperling is found in Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Manitoba.  The Service determined that the Dakota skipper is likely to become endangered throughout all of its range within the ...

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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 of mammals that includes weasels and otters, and grows to about the size of a large house cat.  The Federal Register notice (pdf) regarding the proposed listing, which was published yesterday, states that the ...

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) has published (pdf) a proposed rule to list 21 species as endangered and 2 species as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Of the 21 species the Service proposes to list as endangered, twelve are plant species and nine are animal species. The two proposed threatened species are animal species.

All 23 species are found in the U.S. Territory of Guam and the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. According to the proposed rule, the species are experiencing population level impacts as a result of habitat loss and ...

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Last Friday, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) published its final rule listing the western yellow-billed cuckoo (Coccyzus americanus) as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The species is an insect-eating bird found in riparian woodland habitat. The final rule lists loss of riparian habitat as the primary threat to the species and notes that conversion to agriculture, dam construction, river flow management, and overgrazing have all contributed to loss of the species’ habitat over the last several decades. The species has been listed in twelve ...

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On September 30, 2014, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia upheld (PDF) the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (Service) decision to withdraw (PDF) its proposal to list the dunes sagebrush lizard as an endangered species.  The Service found that threats to the lizard and its habitat have been reduced such that the species no longer meets the statutory definition of an endangered (or threatened) species.  

The dunes sagebrush lizard’s (Sceloporus arenicolus) range spans approximately 745,000 acres across southeastern New Mexico and western Texas in shinnery oak ...

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) has declined to list two Nevada plants under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). On Wednesday, the Service published its 12-month findings on a petition to list the Churchill Narrows buckwheat (Eriogonum diatomaceum) and the Las Vegas buckwheat (Eriogonum corymbosum var. nilesii).

Section 4(a)(1) of the ESA lists five factors that the Service must examine when deciding whether to list a species as threatened or endangered: (1) the present or threatened destruction, modification, or curtailment of its habitat or range; (2 ...

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On September 12, 2014, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) published notice of its final rule listing the Georgia rockcress (Arabis georgiana) as a threatened plant species under the Endangered Species Act.  On the same day, the Service published notice of its final rule designating 732 acres within Georgia and Alabama as critical habitat for the species.  Designated critical habitat for the Georgia rockcress includes riparian and river bluff habitat within Gordon, Floyd, Harris, Muscogee and Clay Counties in Georgia and Bibb, Dallas, Elmore, Monroe, Sumter, and ...

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 On Friday, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) issued a final rule (pdf) revising the critical habitat designation for the contiguous United States distinct population segment (DPS) of the Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis) and revising the boundary of the Canada lynx DPS. The revised critical habitat designation consists of approximately 38,954 square miles of critical habitat in five units in Idaho, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, Washington, and Wyoming.

The Service’s final rule also rescinds the existing State-boundary-based definition of the Canada lynx DPS and ...

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Last Thursday, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) issued a final rule listing two plants as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The two species, Florida brickell-bush (Brickellia mosieri) and Carter’s small-flowered flax (Linum carteri carteri), are both native to Miami-Dade County, Florida. According to the Service, the species’ habitat has suffered degradation as a result of inadequate fire management, nonnative plant species, and human activities. The brickell-bush is known to be present in just 17 sites, while Carter’s small-flowered ...

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In a 90-day finding (pdf) published this morning in the Federal Register, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) found that the listing of the orange clownfish (Amphiprion percula) "may be warranted" under the Endangered Species Act.  This finding was based in large part on the threat from "bleaching and subsequent loss of anemone habitat resulting from ocean warming" to three species of anemone that host the orange clownfish.  NMFS is now conducting a full status review of the species, and it has solicited scientific and commercial information pertaining to the ...

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On August 20, 2014, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) declined to list (pdf) the Upper Missouri River Distinct Population Segment of the Arctic Grayling (Thymallus arcticus) as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act.

According to the Service, ongoing conservation efforts initiated by private landowners and federal and state officials have worked to improve conditions for the species. These voluntary programs, including irrigation flow reductions and fish ladders, have improved habitat quality for the trout. The Service estimates that these ...

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 The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announced today that it is withdrawing its proposal to list the North American wolverine (Gulo gulo luscus) as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The decision to withdraw the listing proposal followed the consensus recommendation of the Service’s three Regional Directors for the regions encompassing the wolverine’s known range in the contiguous United States – the Mountain Prairie, Pacific Northwest, and Pacific Southwest regions.

As we previously reported, the Regional Director of the Service’s Mountain ...

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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 inches and have a life span of less than three years.  According to the announcement issued by the Service, the "two primary  factors affecting the status of the shiners are river fragmentation and alterations of the natural stream flow regime ...

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Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) issued a final rule (pdf) protecting three flowers under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The three flowers -- the Short's bladderpod (Physaria globosa), fleshy-fruit gladecress (Leavenworthia crassa), and whorled sunflower (Helianthus verticillatus) -- are found in Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, and Tennessee.

According to the Service, whorled sunflowers are primarily threatened by industrial forestry and pine plantations. The flowers grow to be six feet tall and live in moist, prairie-like areas, woodlands ...

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A Regional Director for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) has directed federal biologists to withdraw their proposed rule to list the wolverine (Gulo gulo luscus) as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. As we reported here, the Service proposed listing the wolverine in February 2013, citing habitat loss due to climate change as the primary threat to the species. Officials in Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana objected to the proposed listing, arguing climate change conclusions are premature. In response to these objections, the Service asked a panel of nine biologists ...

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Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and National Marine Fisheries Service issued their final interpretation of the phrase "significant portion of its range" for the purposes of applying the Endangered Species Act (ESA).  This phrase plays a key role in the listing and delisting of species, as it appears in the ESA's definition of "endangered species" and "threatened species."  Specifically, under the ESA, an "endangered species" is defined as "any species which is in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its ...

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) issued a final rule (pdf) listing the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse (Zapus hudsonius luteus) as endangered under the Endangered Species Act.

The jumping mouse is a small mammal that hibernates eight or nine months out of the year, which is longer than most mammals. In the three or four months it is active, the jumping mouse must breed, birth, raise its young, and store up sufficient fat reserves to survive the next hibernation period. In addition, the jumping mouse has a limited lifespan of three years or less, and produces only one small ...

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In a split decision and contrary to the recommendation of the Department of Fish and Wildlife (Department), the California Fish and Game Commission (Commission) voted to list the gray wolf (Canis lupis) as endangered. The decision was lauded by representatives of environmental groups but opposed by representatives of farming and ranching interests. It affirms the willingness of the Commission, made up of political appointees, to overrule scientific staff when making critical decisions at the juncture of science and policy.

As we reported here, four environmental groups ...

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On June 2, 2014, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announced the listing of the Webber's ivesia (Ivesia webberi) as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act, and the designation of 2,170 acres of critical habitat in Plumas, Lassen, and Sierra Counties in northeastern California, and in Washoe and Douglas Counties in northwestern Nevada.  As stated in a related announcement issued by the Service, the rule listing the Webber's ivesia and designating critical habitat will not become effective until July 3, 2014.  The identified threats to the species include ...

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) has issued a final rule (pdf) listing the Kentucky Glade Cress (Leavenworthia exigua var. laciniata) as threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The Kentucky Glade Cress, a small, lilac-colored wildflower, is located in parts of Jefferson and Bullitt counties in Kentucky.  The primary threat to the species is the loss and degradation of its habitat, caused by development, roads, utilities, and conversion of its habitat to lawns. The final rule will become effective on June 5, 2014.

The Service also issued a proposed ...

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On May 2, 2014, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) issued a 12-month finding concluding that, based on the best available scientific and commercial information, the endangered Lane Mountain milk-vetch (Astragalus jaegerianus), a plant found in a small portion of the central Mojave Desert in San Bernardino County, should not be reclassified as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.  The Service found that the "primary threats to Lane Mountain milk-vetch are habitat loss and disturbance from military training, OHV use, recreational mining ...

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) published a final rule (pdf) in the Federal Register listing the Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog (Rana Sierrae) and the northern distinct population segment (DPS) of the mountain yellow-legged frog (Rana muscosa) as endangered, and the Yosemite toad (Anaxyrus Canorus) as threatened.  The agency proposed listing the species on April 25, 2013, following a decade of litigation intiiated by the Center for Biological Diversity, as describe in the proposed rule.

 

Recent research based on mitochondrial DNA, morphological ...

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 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 the gray wolf under CESA, determining that the scientific evidence does not warrant listing the species at this time. The issue arose in 2011 when a single wolf, OR-7, was spotted in California for the first time.

The five-member ...

 Yesterday, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announced (pdf) the final listing of the lesser prairie-chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The Service identified drought and habitat fragmentation as threats to the species, and concluded the lesser prairie-chicken is likely to become endangered in the foreseeable future.

In connection with the final listing decision, the Service also announced a final special rule under section 4(d) of the ESA that will retain some degree of state responsibility for managing the ...

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On March 27, 2014, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) issued a 12-month finding and proposed rule to reclassify the arroyo toad (Anaxyrus californicus), a species that is believed to exist exclusively in California, from endangered to threatened under the Endangered Species Act.  The 12-month finding and proposed rule were initiated by a petition submitted in 2011 by The Pacific Legal Foundation requesting that the Service delist the Inyo California towhee and reclassify from endangered to threatened the arroyo toad, Indian Knob mountainbalm, Lane Mountain ...

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) issued a final rule (pdf) listing the Georgetown salamander (Eurycea naufragia) and the Salado salamander (Eureycea chisholmensis) as threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The Service also issued a proposed special rule for the Georgetown salamander under section 4(d) of the ESA, which authorizes the take of protected species in certain instances.

The primary threat to the species is habitat degradation due to declining water quality and disturbance of surface spring sites. According to the Service, urban development ...

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Today, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) announced (pdf) a 90-day finding on a petition to list the Hector’s dolphin (Cephalorhynchus hectori), the Baltic Sea subpopulation of harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena), the eastern Taiwan Strait subpopulation of the Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin (Sousa chinensis), and the Fiordland subpopulation of the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus) under the Endangered Species Act. The announcement came as a result of NMFS' determination that the petition presented substantial scientific and commercial information ...

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has announced a final rule listing the Georgetown salamander (Eurycea naufragia) and Salado salamander (Eureycea chisholmensis) as threatened species under the Endangered Species Act.  The final rule is scheduled to be published in the Federal Register on Monday.  According to an article by Claire Osborn of the Austin American-Statesman, "Williamson County officials have said the area would lose millions of dollars in development if the salamanders are listed."

Nossaman’s Endangered Species Law & Policy blog focuses on news, events, and policies affecting endangered species issues in California and throughout the United States. Topics include listing and critical habitat decisions, conservation and recovery planning, inter-agency consultation, and related developments in law, policy, and science. We also inform readers about regulatory and legislative developments, as well as key court decisions.

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