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ESAblawg is an educational effort by Keith W. Rizzardi. Correspondence with this site does not create a lawyer-client relationship. Photos or links may be copyrighted (but used with permission, or as fair use). ESA blawg is published with a Creative Commons License.

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florida gators... never threatened!

If you ain't a Gator, you should be! Alligators (and endangered crocs) are important indicator species atop their food chains, with sensitivity to pollution and pesticides akin to humans. See ESA blawg. Gator blood could be our pharmaceutical future, too. See ESA musing.

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Follow the truth.

"This institution will be based on the illimitable freedom of the human mind. For here we are not afraid to follow truth wherever it may lead, nor to tolerate any error so long as reason is left free to combat it." -- Thomas Jefferson to William Roscoe, December 27, 1820.

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Thanks, Kevin.

KEVIN S. PETTITT helped found this blawg. A D.C.-based IT consultant specializing in Lotus Notes & Domino, he also maintains Lotus Guru blog.

« FWS proposes critical habitat for four New Mexico wetland species and Missouri snail | Main| U.S Court of Federal Claims rejects (again) the unripe takings claims of wanna-be developer who lacked an ITP »

FWS lists two Hawaiian damselflies and four Southwest fish, but without critical habitat.

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75 Fed. Reg. 35990 / Vol. 75, No. 121 / Thursday, June 24, 2010 / Rules and Regulations
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR / Fish and Wildlife Service
50 CFR Part 17 / Docket No. FWS-R1-ES-2009-0036 / MO 92210-0-0008 / RIN 1018-AV47
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing the Flying Earwig Hawaiian Damselfly and Pacific Hawaiian Damselfly As Endangered Throughout Their Ranges
SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), determine endangered status under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act), for two species of Hawaiian damselflies, the flying earwig Hawaiian damselfly (Megalagrion nesiotes) on the island of Maui and the Pacific Hawaiian damselfly (M. pacificum) on the islands of Hawaii, Maui, and Molokai. This final rule implements the Federal protections provided by the Act for these species. We also determine that critical habitat for these two Hawaiian damselflies is prudent, but not determinable at this time. DATES: This rule becomes effective July 26, 2010.

EXCERPT RE: 5 FACTOR ANALYSIS: We find that both of these species face immediate and significant threats throughout their ranges:
A.  Both the Pacific Hawaiian damselfly and the flying earwig Hawaiian damselfly face threats from past, present, and potential future destruction, modification, and curtailment of their habitats, primarily from: Agriculture and urban development; stream diversion, well-drilling, channelization, and dewatering; feral pigs and nonnative plants; and from stochastic events like hurricanes, landslides, and drought. The changing environmental conditions that may result from climate change (particularly rising temperatures) are also likely to threaten these two damselfly species (compounded because of the two species’ small population sizes and limited distributions), although currently there is limited information on the exact nature of these impacts.
B.  The only known population of the flying earwig Hawaiian damselfly is immediately and significantly threatened by potential recreational collection.
C.  Both the flying earwig Hawaiian damselfly and the Pacific Hawaiian damselfly are subject to an immediate and significant threat of predation by nonnative insects (ants) and bullfrogs. The Pacific Hawaiian damselfly is also similarly threatened by backswimmers and nonnative fish.
D.  The inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms (e.g., inadequate protection of stream habitat and inadequate protection from the introduction of nonnative species) poses a threat to both species of Hawaiian damselfly.
E.  Both of these species face an immediate and significant threat from extinction due to factors associated with small numbers of populations and individuals.

EXCERPT RE: CRITICAL HABITAT: We are currently unable to identify the physical and biological features that are considered essential to the conservation of either damselfly species, because necessary information is not available at this time. Key features of the life histories of these damselfly species, such as longevity, larval stage requirements, and fecundity, remain unknown.

Megalagrion_koelense.jpg
The aquatic and associated upland habitats where the populations of the Pacific Hawaiian damselfly are found have been modified and altered by development and agriculture; stream diversions, channelization, and dewatering; and nonnative plants. In addition, introduced ants, backswimmers, bullfrogs, and predatory nonnative fish have altered and degraded the habitat for the Pacific Hawaiian damselfly.  Image above of a related Hawaiian Damselfly  (Megalagrion koelense )by Idelle Cooper from National Park Service

***

75 Fed. Reg. 36035/ Vol. 75, No. 121 / Thursday, June 24, 2010 / Proposed Rules
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR / Fish and Wildlife Service
50 CFR Part 17 / Docket No. FWS-R4-ES-2010-0027 / MO 92210-0-0008-B2 / RIN 1018-AV85
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing the Cumberland Darter, Rush Darter, Yellowcheek Darter, Chucky Madtom, and Laurel Dace as Endangered Throughout Their Ranges
SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), propose to list the Cumberland darter (Etheostoma susanae), rush darter (Etheostoma phytophilum), yellowcheek darter (Etheostoma moorei), chucky madtom (Noturus crypticus), and laurel dace (Phoxinus saylori) as endangered under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). If we finalize this rule as proposed, it would extend the Act’s protections to these species throughout their ranges, including, Cumberland darter in Kentucky and Tennessee, rush darter in Alabama, yellowcheek darter in Arkansas, and chucky madtom and laurel dace in Tennessee. We have determined that critical habitat for these species is prudent, but not determinable at this time. DATES: We will consider comments we receive on or before August 23, 2010.

ChuckyMadtom.jpg
The chucky madtom (Noturus crypticus) is a small catfish, with the largest specimen measuring 6.47 cm (2.55 in).  The chucky madtom is a rare catfish known from only 15 specimens collected from two Tennessee streams. A lone individual was collected in 1940 from Dunn Creek (a Little Pigeon River tributary) in Sevier County, and 14 specimens have been encountered since 1991 in Little Chucky Creek (a Nolichucky River tributary) in Greene County. Photo by Conservation Fisheries Inc., available at U.S Fish & Wildlife Service.