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Action timeline

June 1, 2000 – The Center and the Institute for Wildlife Studies submitted a petition to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to list four of the six subspecies of the island fox as endangered under the Endangered Species Act.

December 4, 2000 – The Center formally notified the Service that it would file suit for the agency’s failure to respond to the petition. Despite the imperiled status of the foxes, the Service refused to process the petition.

August 28, 2001 – The Center, the Southern Appalachian Biodiversity Project, and the California Native Plant Society reached an agreement with the Service to help expedite Endangered Species Act protection for 29 species, including the island fox.

December 10, 2001 – The Service issued a formal proposal to protect the four imperiled island fox subspecies under the Endangered Species Act.

April 17, 2003 – The Center sued the Service for failing to finalize its decision to list the foxes.

March 5, 2004 – The Service listed the island foxes as endangered.

October 7, 2004 – The Service proposed to designate critical habitat for the island fox.

November 9, 2005 – The Service declared that it would not designate critical habitat for any of the endangered island fox subspecies, essentially stating that because the foxes use all the habitats available on their islands, their local environment did not meet the definition of critical habitat.

Photo courtesy of National Park Service