Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge official eyes Saginaw land for development
Fish and Wildlife Service manages the refuge, which spans a corner of Saginaw as well as parts of James and Spaulding townships. Fish and Wildlife Service, potentially adding the land to the Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge. Fish and Wildlife Service remains able to leverage federal funds to maintain and develop the Shiawassee National Wildlife Refuge, he said. The wildlife service’s ties to Green Point Environmental Learning Center deepened because of a lawsuit filed the following year. At one point, Saginaw was asked to pay as much as $5 million, officials said at the time.mlive.com
Dow Chemical, General Motors settlement funds could fund $4.7M in proposed restoration projects
Click here to view the draft onlineThe draft was developed by the Tittabawassee River Natural Resource Trustee Council and the Saginaw River and Bay Trustee Council. Dioxin contamination in the Saginaw Bay watershed was the result of historic industrial practices by Dow dating as far back as the 1890s, MLive previously reported. Back in the 1940s, a subsidiary of the General Motors Corporation and wastewater treatment plants on the Saginaw River released polychlorinated biphenyls and related compounds into the Saginaw River, according to information provided by EGLE. Because of this, the trustees reached a settlement for natural resource damages in 1998 with the General Motors Corporation and other responsible parties. Read more from MLiveEPA proposes $5.4M settlement with Dow for dioxin cleanup workDow Chemical settlement will fund restoration projects for Tittabawassee River areaNew project aims to track sturgeon and walleye in Saginaw Bay with acoustic receiver systemmlive.com
Rare attack in Alaska renews interest in polar bear patrols
A polar bear attack that killed a mother and her 1-year-old son in far western Alaska this week underscores the risks of living alongside the world's largest land carnivores and has renewed interest in prevention programs known as bear patrols.
Environmentalists want jaguars reintroduced to US Southwest
An environmental group on Monday petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to help reintroduce the jaguar to the Southwest, where it roamed for hundreds of thousands of years before being whittled down to just one of the big cats known to survive in the region. The male jaguar, named Sombra — shadow in Spanish — has been seen in southern Arizona several times since first captured on a wildlife camera in the Dos Cabezas Mountains in 2016, including a 2017 video by the Center for Biological Diversity. There are a handful of jaguars known to be living across the border in the Mexican state of Sonora.news.yahoo.com
Northern long-eared bat now listed as endangered after being devastated by fungal disease
The Biden administration declared the northern long-eared bat endangered on Tuesday in a last-ditch effort to save a species driven to the brink of extinction by white-nose syndrome, a fungal disease.chicagotribune.com
Fungal outbreak threatens Great Lakes tricolored bat with extinction
Fish and Wildlife Service in March proposed reclassifying the northern long-eared bat from threatened to endangered as it reached the brink of extinction. “White-nose syndrome is decimating hibernating bat species like the tricolored bat at unprecedented rates,” said Martha Williams, the agency director. Fish and Wildlife Service shows a tricolored bat inside Ellison's Cave in Walker County, Ga., in 2016. But the agency decided against that for the tricolored bat because habitat loss isn’t causing its slump. The Fish and Wildlife Service will take comments on the proposed listing through Nov. 14 and conduct a public hearing Oct. 12.mlive.com
Nevada court fights raise caution flags on green energy push
Opposition from friends, not foes, is creating potential roadblocks to President Joe Biden’s green energy agenda on federal lands in the blue-leaning, Western swing state of Nevada. Two lithium mines and a geothermal power plant in the works in the biggest U.S. gold-mining state are under attack from conservationists, tribes and others who otherwise generally support Biden's efforts to expedite the transition from fossil fuels to renewables. The conflicts put a spotlight on an emerging reality as the Biden administration tries to meet its goal of having the U.S. power grid run on clean energy by 2035.news.yahoo.com
Biden Administration Reverses Trump Endangered Species Rule
Federal regulators Wednesday canceled a policy adopted under former President Donald Trump that weakened their authority to identify lands and waters where declining animals and plants could receive government protection.detroit.cbslocal.com
Duck artists: The Hautman brothers
For his paintings of waterfowl, artist Jim Hautman has won the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's annual duck stamp contest a record six times. Close behind are his brothers, Joe Hautman (five-time winner) and Robert Hautman (three-time winner). Correspondent Conor Knighton talked to the self-taught artists about the siblings' artistic rivalry.news.yahoo.com
Federal Agencies Reverse Trump Limits On Habitat Protection
The Biden administration on Thursday withdrew a rule adopted under former President Donald Trump that limited which lands and waters could be designated as places where imperiled animals and plants could receive federal protection.detroit.cbslocal.com
Janitor corrals mountain lion in empty California classroom
A quick-thinking custodian safely confined a mountain lion in an empty classroom after it entered a Northern California high school Wednesday morning, authorities said. The custodian was opening Pescadero High for the school day when the juvenile cougar was spotted, said Detective Javier Acosta with the San Mateo County Sheriff’s Office. “The mountain lion casually walked through campus and decided to go into an English classroom,” he said.news.yahoo.com
Judge: Trump administration illegally withdrew bird listing
A federal judge has ruled the Trump administration acted illegally in 2020 when it withdrew an earlier proposal to list as threatened a hen-sized bird found only in the high desert along the California-Nevada line. Greater sage grouse live in sagebrush habitat in 12 western states, including California and Nevada, while bi-state grouse exist only along the Sierra’s eastern front.news.yahoo.com
Brooklyn’s dam is being demolished with help from state and federal funds
BROOKLYN, MI – Brooklyn’s Dam is targeted for demolition, with help from some state and federal funding. The Brooklyn Dam Removal Project has received $800,000 through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Fish Passage Program under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources also is providing a $252,000-grant toward the project.mlive.com
Training dog expected to recover after wolf attack in Marquette County
MARQUETTE, Mi – A hunting dog is recovering after it was bitten by a wolf in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The training dog is okay and is expected to make a full recovery, its owner told WLUCThe DNR told the TV station that a man was training his hunting dogs. One of the dogs was baying at a rabbit when a wolf approached and carried the dog further into the woods. The incident has renewed conversations and debates around Michigan’s oft discussed and routinely proposed wolf hunt. The last wolf hunt in Michigan was in 2013.mlive.com
Wildlife officials mark rare Florida panther for death
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the agency formed to protect wildlife, has taken an unprecedented step and marked for death a rare Florida panther known as FP 260.FP 260 is still alive, but has been targeted for capture and euthanasia, Craig Pittman reports for the Florida Phoenix.Get market news worthy of your time with Axios Markets. Subscribe for free.Driving the news: Because of an Immokalee rancher's persistent complaints that FP 260 was killing her calves, the federal agency decided thnews.yahoo.com
4 federal agencies join Rockford airport asking for dismissal of lawsuit seeking to protect Bell Bowl Prairie
The U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Department of the Interior, Federal Aviation Administration and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said last week in a court filing that the Natural Land Institute has no legal standing.chicagotribune.com
Yellowstone bison species decision questioned by US judge
A federal judge has ordered the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to revisit part of its decision not to protect Yellowstone National Park’s bison as an endangered species. The Buffalo Field Campaign and Western Watersheds Project groups have been fighting since 2014 to have Yellowstone’s bison declared endangered or threatened under the Endangered Species Act. The Fish and Wildlife Service, citing a different study, has argued that the herds are not genetically distinct and rejected the listing petition in 2019, the Billings Gazette reported.news.yahoo.com
Wyoming tries again to remove Yellowstone grizzly protection
Wyoming has asked the federal government to remove grizzly bears in and around Yellowstone National Park from protection under the Endangered Species Act, a request which if approved could allow the animals to be hunted. The bears' recovery from as few as 136 animals when they were first protected as a threatened species in 1975 to more than 1,000 today is a success story, the state argued in its petition Monday. Wyoming filed the petition with the formal support of Idaho and Montana officials.news.yahoo.com
Invasive spider species appearing in Georgia
The Joro spider species population -- native to east Asia -- has skyrocketed in Georgia. It’s not clear exactly how and when the first Joro spider arrived in the U.S. Experts say Joros are not a threat to humans or dogs and cats and won’t bite them unless they are feeling very threatened.news.yahoo.com
Toxic foam covers India's sacred Yamuna river
One of India's holiest rivers - the Yamuna - is coated with toxic foam, adding to the woes of New Delhi residents already enduring a blanket of thick smog over the capital. The city government has blamed the blight on "heavy sewage and industrial waste" discharged into the river from further upstream last week. But it didn't stop several Hindu worshippers from taking a dip in the river to mark Chhath Puja, a four-day festival to offer prayers to the sun.news.yahoo.com
Endangered status proposed for Nevada flower at lithium mine
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing endangered species listing for a desert wildflower that’s only known to exist on a remote ridge in western Nevada where an Australian company plans a lithium mine at the center of a legal battle.
Biden aims to restore species protections weakened by Trump
The Biden administration says it is canceling or reviewing a host of actions by the Trump administration to roll back protections for endangered or threatened species, with a goal of strengthening a landmark law while addressing climate change.
Scientists: Grizzlies expand turf but still need protection
Fish and Wildlife Service is a grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis) in Grand Teton National Park, Wyo. Grizzly bears are slowly expanding in the northern Rocky Mountains but scientists say they need continued protections and have concluded no other areas of the country would be suitable for the fearsome animals. The Fish and Wildlife Service on Wednesday released its first assessment in almost a decade about the status of grizzly bears in the contiguous U.S. Conservationists and some university scientists have pushed to return bears to areas including Colorado’s San Juan Mountains and California’s Sierra Nevada. Grizzly bears have been protected as a threatened species in the contiguous U.S. since 1975, allowing a slow recovery in a handful of areas.
Conservationists sue to save spotted owl logging protections
FILE - In this May 8, 2003, file photo, a northern spotted owl sits on a tree branch in the Deschutes National Forest near Camp Sherman, Ore. Environmental groups have filed a lawsuit seeking to preserve protections for 3.4 million acres of northern spotted owl habitat from the US-Canadian border to northern California. Fish and Wildlife Service removed protections for the old-growth forest in the last days of the Trump administration. Democratic lawmakers called the reduction in logging protections “potential scientific meddling” and called for an investigation. For decades, the federal government has been trying to save the northern spotted owl, a native bird that sparked an intense battle over logging across Washington, Oregon and California. AdThe Fish and Wildlife Service has since said the northern spotted owl warrants being moved up to the more robust “endangered” status because of continued population declines.
1st clone of US endangered species, a ferret, announced
Fish and Wildlife Service is Elizabeth Ann, the first cloned black-footed ferret and first-ever cloned U.S. endangered species, at 50-days old on Jan. 29, 2021. Scientists have cloned the first U.S. endangered species, a black-footed ferret duplicated from the genes of an animal that died over 30 years ago. (AP) – Scientists have cloned the first U.S. endangered species, a black-footed ferret duplicated from the genes of an animal that died over 30 years ago. The slinky predator named Elizabeth Ann, born Dec. 10 and announced Thursday, is cute as a button. “You might have been handling a black-footed ferret kit and then they try to take your finger off the next day,” U.S.
Biden plans temporary halt of oil activity in Arctic refuge
Fish and Wildlife Service shows a herd of caribou on the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in northeast Alaska. President Joe Biden on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021, signaled plans to place a temporary moratorium on oil and gas lease activities in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge after the Trump administration issued leases in a remote, rugged area considered sacred by the Indigenous Gwich'in. Fish and Wildlife Service via AP, File)JUNEAU, Alaska – President Joe Biden's administration announced plans Wednesday for a temporary moratorium on oil and gas leasing in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge after the Trump administration issued leases in a part of the refuge considered sacred by the Indigenous Gwich'in. Details of his plans weren't immediately available, though Psaki told reporters in Washington that leases would be reviewed. “The Biden administration must faithfully implement the law and allow for that good progress to continue,” she said in a statement.
Trump administration slashes imperiled spotted owls' habitat
The Trump administration has slashed more than 3 million acres of protected habitat for the northern spotted owl in Oregon, Washington and northern California, much of it in prime timber locations in Oregon's coastal ranges. Fish and Wildlife Service under President Donald Trump of taking a "parting shot" at protections designed to help restore the threatened owl species. “This revision guts protected habitat for the northern spotted owl by more than a third. The Fish and Wildlife Service has since said the northern spotted owl warrants being moved up to the more robust “endangered” status because of continued population declines. It was updated on Jan. 14, 2021, to correct the amount of owl habitat devastated by Oregon wildfires last fall.
US holds first oil lease sale for Alaska's Arctic refuge
Fish and Wildlife Service, caribou from the Porcupine caribou herd migrate onto the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in northeast Alaska. The U.S. government held its first-ever oil and gas lease sale Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021 for Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, an event critics labeled as a bust with major oil companies staying on the sidelines and a state corporation emerging as the main bidder. Fish and Wildlife Service via AP, File)JUNEAU, Alaska – The U.S. government held its first-ever oil and gas lease sale Wednesday for Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, an event critics labeled as a bust with major oil companies staying on the sidelines and a state corporation emerging as the main bidder. Critics of the lease sale say the region is special, providing habitat for wildlife including caribou, polar bears, wolves and birds, and should be off limits to drilling. The land management agency has said under an “optimistic, aggressive hypothetical scenario" exploration could begin within two years after a lease sale, with production eight years after a sale.
Trump administration scales back wild bird protections
– The Trump administration on Tuesday finalized changes that weaken the government's enforcement powers under a century-old law protecting most American wild bird species, brushing aside warnings that billions of birds could die as a result. A U.S. District Court judge in August had blocked the administration's prior attempt to change how the Migratory Bird Treaty Act is enforced. The 1918 migratory bird law came after many U.S. bird populations had been decimated by hunting and poaching — much of it for feathers for women’s hats. Fish and Wildlife Service will not prosecute landowners, industry and other individuals for accidentally killing a migratory bird," Bernhardt said. An electric industry trade group said it expected its members would continue to take steps to reduce bird deaths.
Feds to delay seeking legal protection for monarch butterfly
FILE - In this June 2, 2019, file photo, a fresh monarch butterfly rests on a Swedish Ivy plant soon after emerging in Washington. Trump administration officials are expected to say this week whether the monarch butterfly, a colorful and familiar backyard visitor now caught in a global extinction crisis, should receive federal designation as a threatened species. Emergency action could be taken earlier, but plans now call for proposing to list the monarch under the Endangered Species Act in 2024 unless its situation improves enough to make the step unnecessary. Trump's team also has weakened protections for endangered and threatened species in its push for deregulation. “Protection for monarchs is needed — and warranted — now," said George Kimbrell, legal director for the Center for Food Safety.
Trump administration moves ahead on gutting bird protections
The Trump administration moved forward Friday on gutting a longstanding federal protection for the nation's birds, over objections from former federal officials and many scientists that billions more birds will likely perish as a result. Fish and Wildlife Service published its take on the proposed rollback in the Federal Register. The Trump administration maintains that the Act should apply only to birds killed or harmed intentionally, and is putting that “clarifying” change into regulation. The administration has continued to push the migratory bird regulation even after a federal judge in New York in August rejected the administration’s legal rationale. Steve Holmer with the American Bird Conservancy said the change would accelerate bird population declines that have swept North America since the 1970s.
Elusive eastern black rail threatened by rising sea levels
Nicknamed the “ feathered mouse,” the eastern black rail is about six inches long, with white-flecked dark feathers, a brown nape and brilliant red eyes. Populations have declined by more than 75% over the last 10 to 20 years, according to a wildlife service news release announcing Endangered Species Act protection. The Center for Biological Diversity first proposed protections for the eastern black rail 10 years ago and sued the government last year over its inaction. The wildlife service said that doing so would make it easier for bird lovers to find eastern black rails and potentially trample their habitat. Historically, the eastern black rail is known to exist in 35 states east of the Rocky Mountains as well as Puerto Rico, Canada, Brazil, and several countries in the Caribbean and Central America, according to the FWS.