January 9, 1985 – The National Marine Fisheries Service declared the vaquita endangered under the Endangered Species Act.

June 28, 2000 – The Center and a binational coalition of environmental groups filed a lawsuit against the federal agencies responsible for managing water diversions from the Colorado River to ensure that impacts on imperiled species like the vaquita were considered. The lawsuit also sought to obtain guaranteed water flows into the Colorado River Delta.

October 18, 2002 – The Center filed suit and won an injunction blocking a U.S. vessel from conducting deadly seismic surveys in the range of the vaquita.

March 4, 2008 – The Center filed a petition to ban the importation of swordfish from countries that aren’t adequately protecting marine mammals from fisheries.

January 5, 2015In a landmark settlement the U.S. government agreed to adopt new rules that ensure seafood imported into the United States meets high standards for protecting whales, dolphins and other marine mammals like the vaquita.

Vaquita photo by Paul Olsen, NOAA