Coleman’s coralroot is a beautiful orchid found at only three sites in the Sky Islands of Arizona, with one population in the Dragoon Mountains and two in the Santa Ritas. In the Santa Rita Mountains, one population grows in the footprint of the proposed Rosemont copper mine, a massive open-pit mine that could obliterate the entire population. In the Baboquivaris, the orchid has already been extirpated, likely due to overgrazing by cattle. The orchid’s surviving populations are all threatened by livestock grazing, recreational impacts and global climate change. Just discovered to be a separate species in 2010, the Coleman’s coralroot is already in danger of extinction.
To save the orchid from that fate, in September 2010 the Center petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to protect it under the federal Endangered Species Act. When the agency failed to move forward in the protection process, the Center filed a notice of intent to sue.
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2010 federal Endangered Species Act petition
Contact: Tierra Curry