SAVING THE NORTHERN GOSHAWK
An agile and swift predator with unnerving red eyes, the northern goshawk is legendary for its ferocity, beauty and amazing flight skills; in medieval Europe, goshawks were the most prized of all falconry hawks. Darting through trees beneath the forest canopy, they’re top-level predators. But as mature and old-growth forests suffer death by a thousand cuts, so do goshawks. In turn, their decline unravels forest ecosystems and puts stress on other species.
To save the goshawk and the forests it depends on, the Center launched an ambitious campaign to list the northern goshawk as endangered and in so doing, to protect all mature forests from Alaska to Mexico. Failure spelled success: Although the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service kept the goshawk off the endangered list — despite two Center petitions and several lawsuits — our campaign compelled the U.S. Forest Service to dramatically improve protection of mature and old-growth forests across the West. New goshawk management plans were established in Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Colorado, California, Oregon and Washington. The Center has conducted scientific research on goshawks and between 1999 and 2001 published an online review of goshawk research and conservation issues.
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