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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.


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.


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.

« The ESA and Election Day: wolves, wood storks, woodpeckers, water and more. | Main| FWS extends public comment on Lane Mountain Milk-Vetch, finds listing of Wright's Mash thistle warranted but precluded »

FWS proposes listing of two midwest mussels; lists three southeastern mussels as endangered

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75 Fed. Reg. 67552 (Tuesday, November 2, 2010) / Proposed Rules
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service
50 CFR Part 17 / Docket No. FWS–R3–ES–2010–0019; MO 92210–0–0008–B2 / RIN 1018–AV96
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing the Rayed Bean and Snuffbox as Endangered
AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.
ACTION: Proposed rule.

SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), propose to list the rayed bean (Villosa fabalis) andsnuffbox (Epioblasma triquetra) as endangered throughout their ranges, under Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). This proposed rule, if made final, would extend the Act’s protection to the rayed bean and the snuffbox. We have determined that designating critical habitat for these species is prudent, but not determinable at this time. The Service seeks data and comments from the public on this proposed listing rule. DATES: We will consider comments we receive on or before January 3, 2011. We must receive requests for  public hearings, in writing, on or before December 17, 2010.

INFO AND LINKS.  The rayed bean is a small freshwater mussel with habitat in lakes and small to large streams in sand or gravel. It is endangered in Illinois, Michigan, and Ohio. Species of Special Concern in Indiana. SeeIllinois Natural History Survey and photo above from FWS, Angela Boyer.

The snuffbox is a small, triangular freshwater mussel that is found in Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. It lives in small to medium-sized creeks in areas with a swift current, although it is also found in Lake Erie and some larger rivers. See FWS.  The life cycle of the snuffbox, like most freshwater mussels, is unusual and complex. The male releases sperm in the water column that is then siphoned by the female to fertilize her eggs. Fertilized eggs develop into microscopic larvae, called glochidia, within special gill chambers. After brooding for up to seven months, the female expels mature glochidia, which then must attach to the gills or fins of a specific host fish species to complete development into juvenile mussels. If successfully attached to a host fish (such as the logperch in the photo below), glochidia mature within a few weeks. Juvenile mussels then drop off and continue to grow, if they fall onto appropriate substrate. Photo by Dr. Chris Barnhart, Missouri State University, available online from FWS.


75 Fed. Reg. 67512 (Tuesday, November 2, 2010) / Rules and Regulations
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR Fish and Wildlife Service
50 CFR Part 17 / Docket No. FWS–R4–ES–2008–0104; MO 92210–0–0008–B2 / RIN 1018–AU88
Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Determination of Endangered Status for the Georgia Pigtoe Mussel, Interrupted Rocksnail, and Rough Hornsnail and Designation of Critical Habitat
AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.
ACTION: Final rule.

SUMMARY: We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service), list the Georgia pigtoe mussel (Pleurobema hanleyianum), interrupted rocksnail (Leptoxis foremani), and rough hornsnail (Pleurocera foremani) as endangered under the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). We also designate approximately 258 kilometers (km) (160 miles (mi)) of stream and river channels as critical habitat for the three species, in Cherokee, Clay, Coosa, Elmore, and Shelby Counties, Alabama; Gordon, Floyd, Murray, and Whitfield Counties, Georgia; and Bradley and Polk Counties, Tennessee. DATES: This rule becomes effective on December 2, 2010.