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CENTER for BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY Because life is good

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Action timeline

September 19, 1988 – The San Gorgonio chapter of the Sierra Club petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to list the Riverside fairy shrimp as endangered under the Endangered Species Act on an emergency basis. The Service found that emergency listing was not warranted.

November 12, 1991 – The Service published a proposed rule to list the Riverside fairy shrimp as endangered.

August 3, 1993 – The Service listed the shrimp as endangered. It declined to designate critical habitat for the species, claiming that this designation would increase the threat of habitat vandalism.

September 3, 1998 – The “Vernal Pools of Southern California Recovery Plan,” which included recovery goals for the Riverside fairy shrimp, was finalized.

June 30, 1999 – The Center filed suit against the Service for its failure to designate critical habitat for the shrimp.

September 21, 2000 – The Service proposed to designate 12, 060 acres as critical habitat for the shrimp.

May 30, 2001 – In violation of the Service’s own federal recovery plan, the agency made a final critical habitat designation of only about 6,870 acres, excluding virtually all wetlands on the Marines’ Camp Pendleton and Miramar bases, as well as occupied pools threatened with development.

April 12, 2005 – The Service slashed critical habitat for the Riverside fairy shrimp more than it ever had before by designating only 306 acres as vital to the survival and recovery of the species. The decision amounted to a 96-percent reduction of originally designated acreage.

August 28, 2007 – The Center submitted a notice of intent to sue the Bush administration for slashing the Riverside fairy shrimp’s critical habitat, as well as for making illegal decisions regarding protections for 54 other imperiled species.

January 14, 2009 – The Center filed suit against the Bush administration to compel the Fish and Wildlife Service to grant the Riverside fairy shrimp adequate critical habitat.

November 16, 2009 – The Service agreed to reconsider its deeply flawed decision to slash critical habitat for the Riverside fairy shrimp. A new decision was slated for proposal in 2011.

May 31, 2011 – The Fish and Wildlife Service proposed to grant the species 2,984 protected acres: a nearly tenfold increase over the 2005 acreage.

December 4, 2012 – As a result of our lawsuit, the Service granted the riverside fairy shrimp 1,724 acres as protected critical habitat in Ventura, Orange and San Diego counties.

Photo courtesy Victoria School IT Club