|A Mexican gray wolf leaves cover at the Sevilleta
National Wildlife Refuge, Socorro County, NM.
Suspicion over federal plans to restore Mexican
gray wolves has spread to Colorado and Utah.
The Federal government proposed to release a subspecies of wolf in southern Utah and Colorado. This has raised concerns among local ranchers and the Utah Farm Bureau.
Conversely, wildlife advocates are fighting to introduce the Mexican gray wolf into Utah. The Mexican wolf is a threatened species found in the Southwest region of the United States. There are only 110 species left in the wild. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has surveyed the region along southern Utah and believes the habitat is suitable for the reintroduction of Mexican gray wolves.
Kirk Robinson, executive director of the Western Wildlife Conservancy, expressed his concerns about the Mexican wolf not being discussed during the legislative season.
"Nobody is talking about reintroducing the Mexican wolf," Robinson said. "Our government officials are really upset about this. They don't want Mexican wolves or any other wolves for that matter. That is why there is such a big conflict."
Robinson shed some light as to why southern Utah needs a wolf population.
America’s Rarest Species Receive $44.8 Million Investment Under Endangered Species Act Grants Program: California will receive $15 million in funding to help collaborative efforts to conserve imperiled species
In addition to providing regulatory protections that have successfully prevented the extinction of hundreds of species, the Endangered Species Act (ESA) also provides millions of dollars in funding each year for conservation efforts through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund (CESCF). This year, threatened and endangered species in 20 states will benefit from $44.8 million in grants from the fund; California will receive over $15 million. Authorized under Section 6 of the ESA, the CESCF enables states to work with private landowners, conservation groups and other government agencies to develop projects that protect federally-listed species and their habitats.
Bishop: Obama Administration’s Final Species Petition Regulations Demonstrate Need for ESA Reform
Washington, D.C. (Sept 26, 2016) – Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced final revisions to regulations governing the petition process under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) issued the following statement:
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) have issued listing decisions on a number of species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in recent days, and USFWS has announced notable changes in its recovery strategy for the red wolf.
- On September 7, 2016, USFWS reopened the comment period for its proposed rule to remove the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem population of grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis) from the list of threatened species. The initial proposed rule emphasized that the States of Montana, Wyoming, and Idaho needed to promulgate regulations managing human-caused mortality of grizzly bears before USFWS would proceed to a final rule, and such state mechanisms have recently been finalized.
Process will ensure species in greatest need are addressed first, provide predictability and transparency and foster stakeholder engagement
January 14, 2016 - The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today announced a draft methodology to better identify and prioritize pending Endangered Species Act (ESA) “status reviews,” the process by which the Service determines whether a species that has been petitioned for listing warrants ESA protection. The methodology will assist the Service and its partners in addressing America’s most imperiled wildlife and plant species first, while reinforcing collaboration between the Service and its partners and maximizing transparency throughout the decision-making process.
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Nov 12, 2014) - House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings (WA-04) released the following statement today on the Obama Administration’s listing of the Gunnison Sage-Grouse as threatened under the Endangered Species Act:
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Removes Lesser Prairie-Chicken from List of Threatened and Endangered Species in Accordance with Court Order; Agency will continue working with stakeholders on conservation efforts benefitting lesser prairie-chicken, landowners and local economies
July 19, 2016 - The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today fulfilled a court ruling that had vacated its Endangered Species Act (ESA) listing decision, by officially removing the lesser prairie-chicken from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife.
This administrative action and the decision not to appeal the court’s ruling do not constitute a biological determination on whether or not the lesser prairie-chicken warrants federal protection. The Service is undertaking a thorough re-evaluation of the bird’s status and the threats it faces using the best available scientific information to determine anew whether listing under the ESA is warranted.
ALBUQUERQUE, NEW MEXICO – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has released a draft revision to the Mexican Wolf Recovery Plan. The plan guides Mexican wolf recovery efforts by the bureau and its partners, with the ultimate goal of removing this wolf subspecies from Endangered Species Act (ESA) protections and returning management to the appropriate states and tribes. The Service is now seeking public input and peer review on the draft revised plan through a public comment period and series of public meetings. The comment period will remain open through August 29, 2017.
December 1-31, 2015 - The following is a summary of Mexican Wolf Reintroduction Project (Project) activities in the Mexican Wolf Experimental Population Area (MWEPA) in Arizona, including the Fort Apache Indian Reservation (FAIR), and New Mexico. Additional Project information can be obtained by calling (928) 339-4329 or toll free at (888) 459-9653, or by visiting the Arizona Game and Fish Department website at www.azgfd.gov/wolf or by visiting the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service website at www.fws.gov/southwest/es/mexicanwolf. Past updates may be viewed on either website, or interested parties may sign up to receive this update electronically by visiting www.azgfd.gov/signup. This update is a public document and information in it can be used for any purpose. The Project is a multi-agency cooperative effort among the Arizona Game and Fish Department (AGFD), USDA Forest Service (USFS), USDA-Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Wildlife Services (USDA-APHIS WS), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the White Mountain Apache Tribe (WMAT).
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Members of the Congressional Western Caucus released statements regarding this week’s full committee hearing and markup on the Caucus’ bipartisan Endangered Species Act modernization package in the House Natural Resources Committee, during which four of those bills passed the Committee:
Natural Resources Committee Chairman Rob Bishop (UT-01): “These bills honor our heritage, lighten regulatory burdens for communities, increase transparency, and strengthen relationships between states and the federal government. Ultimately, these bills aim to bolster our country’s natural resources. I’d like to thank the Western Caucus and my colleagues for helping to move these bills forward.”
AUSTIN, Nev. - Private landowners and conservationists in Nevada and several other Western states continue to work together to try to prevent the sage-grouse from being listed as an endangered species.
Duane Coombs, manager of the 250,000-acre Smith Creek Ranch near Austin, Nevada, is among those working to improve sage-grouse habitat on the public and private lands he ranches.
Process will ensure species in greatest need are identified and addressed first, provide greater transparency and foster stakeholder engagement
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced its final methodology for improving the way it identifies and prioritizes pending Endangered Species Act (ESA) status reviews, the scientifically rigorous process the agency uses to determine whether a species warrants federal protection. The new approach will allow the Service to be more strategic in how it addresses pending status reviews, to be more transparent in how it establishes workload priorities, and to work better with partners to conserve America’s most imperiled plants and wildlife.
Revisions to policy implementing Candidate Conservation program improve process for working with states, tribes and private landowners
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) and NOAA Fisheries today finalized revisions to the Candidate Conservation Agreements with Assurances (CCAAs) policy under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
The Candidate Conservation program is emblematic of the flexibility of the ESA and how the law can be used to engage partners in conserving and protecting imperiled species before they are listed as threatened or endangered. In particular, CCAAs provide a mechanism that encourages non-federal landowners to implement specific conservation measures for at-risk wildlife. In return, they receive assurances that they will not be required to undertake any additional conservation measures or be subject to additional resource use or land use restrictions, even if subsequent information indicates that additional or revised conservation measures are needed for the species or if the species is ultimately listed under federal protection.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Proposes to List West Coast Population of Fisher as Threatened Under Endangered Species Act
YREKA, Calif., (Oct 6, 2014) — The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) today announced it is seeking information from the scientific community, the public and interested stakeholders on its proposal to protect the West Coast population of fisher as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
The first nest was found on April 18 on Santa Monica State Beach, followed by discovery of a nest on Dockweiler State Beach on April 27, and two nests on Malibu Lagoon State Beach on April 28 and May 4. The nests were discovered by monitors with Los Angeles Audubon and The Bay Foundation. Following their discovery, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) biologists installed small wire cages around each nest to protect the eggs from predators and human disturbance.
“This is a sign that, against all odds, western snowy plovers are making a comeback, and we really need the cooperation of beachgoers to help give them the space they need to nest and raise their young,” said senior fish and wildlife biologist Chris Dellith with the Service’s Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office. “I’m hopeful that we can find a balance between beach recreation and habitat restoration, which will allow humans and shorebirds like the western snowy plover to peacefully exist along our coastline.”