Western Watersheds Project Files Legal Challenge To Denial of Endangered Species Act Protections for Greater Sage-Grouse

For immediate release – March 8, 2010

Contact: Jon Marvel, Executive Director, Western Watersheds Project – 208-788-2290
Laird Lucas, Executive Director, Advocates for the West – 208-870-7621

In response to the announcement on Friday March 5 by Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar that the listing of greater sage-grouse and two of its distinct population segments (Mono Basin and Eastern Washington) under the protections of the Endangered Species Act is “warranted but precluded”, Western Watersheds Project has filed litigation in federal District Court in Boise, Idaho challenging the “precluded” portion of the finding.

The litigation charges that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Department of the Interior violated the Administrative Procedure Act and the Endangered Species Act by finding that the listing of greater sage-grouse is “precluded”.

“The Obama administration rightfully concluded that the greater sage-grouse fully qualify for the protections of the Endangered Species Act,” said Jon Marvel, executive director of Western Watersheds Project. “Unfortunately, the administration has violated the law in not listing sage-grouse at the same time.” Read the rest of this entry »

Tough winter for wolf darting in Yellowstone Park

Wolf numbers in Yellowstone are way down, but that doesn’t mean more of what are left wear collars-

Tough winter for wolf darting. By Brett French. Billings Gazette (reprinted in the Star-Tribune)

It looks like a very bad water year in Idaho.

Could it also turn out to be another bad fire year? A really bad fire year?

Burned signs on the South Fork Salmon River 2007 © Ken Cole

Burned signs on the South Fork Salmon River 2007 © Ken Cole

With precipitation and snowpack somewhere around 75% of normal, it looks bad for fish and fires this year.

Rocky Barker asks whether it could be as bad as the 1910 fires.

Is Idaho ready for a repeat of the massive fires of 1910?
BY ROCKY BARKER – Idaho Statesman

See where the state stands water wise this year: Idaho SNOTEL Snow/Precipitation Update Report