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Action timeline

August 9, 1995 – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposed listing the willowy monardella under the Endangered Species Act.

October 13, 1998 – The Service listed the willowy monardella as an endangered species, but due to the influence of corrupt Interior official Julie MacDonald, deemed designating critical habitat for the plant “not prudent.”

2001 – The California Native Plant Society sued the Service for its refusal to set aside critical habitat for the willowy monardella.

June 2, 2003 – As part of a settlement with the California Native Plant Society, the Service agreed to reconsider its “not prudent” finding on the willowy monardella’s critical habitat designation.

November 9, 2005 – Despite determining that 2,539 acres of San Diego County land are necessary for the conservation of the willowy monardella, the Service proposed designating just 115 acres as critical habitat for the plant.

November 8, 2006 – The Service’s final critical habitat decision protected a mere 73 acres of willowy monardella habitat – less than 3 percent of the 2,539 acres originally deemed essential for the species’ conservation.

August 28, 2007 – The Center filed a notice of intent to sue the Service for wrongful decisions affecting the listings and critical habitat designations of 55 species, including the willowy monardella’s microscopic critical habitat designation.

January 14, 2009 – The Center filed its final challenge to the Bush administration’s anti-endangered species actions in seven separate lawsuits to increase critical habitat for 19 species, including the monardella.

Photo © Jasmine Watts