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Habitat Protected for a Tiny, Shiny Insect
In an important victory for the Center for Biological Diversity and allies, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service just protected nearly 2,000 acres of habitat for endangered Miami tiger beetles in South Florida.
As small as a grain of rice, Miami tiger beetles have a beautiful emerald sheen. Just like tigers, they’re aggressive predators with strong mandibles. But their last two populations are threatened by developments — including a waterpark we’re challenging in court — and sea-level rise.
Under the Endangered Species Act, the Service is supposed to designate critical habitat whenever it protects a U.S. species. But (as usual), we had to sue to make that happen for these beetles.
Species with critical habitat are more than twice as likely to be recovering than species without it. That’s why, as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Act this year, we also fight like hell to defend and strengthen this lifesaving law.
Join us by taking action to protect more imperiled species and their homes.
A Week of Action to End the Era of Fossil Fuels
When President Biden took office, he promised to be the climate president — yet under his watch, the United States continues to be the biggest oil and gas producer in the world.
Frontline communities and global scientists have been abundantly clear: We can’t avoid the very worst of the climate and extinction crises if we allow any more fossil fuel development.
This summer it’s time to mobilize and turn up the heat. Starting June 8, join us across the country for a week of action to demand the president use his executive powers to end the era of fossil fuels and finally declare a climate emergency.
You can also share this powerful video on Twitter to help get more people involved.
Report: How I-11 Would Worsen the Water Crisis
The Colorado River Basin is already suffering the most severe water shortage in 1,200 years. According to a new Center report, building Interstate 11 through Arizona would only make it worse by spurring more water-draining sprawl.
The proposed 280-mile interstate would also degrade sensitive desert ecosystems — threatening species like Sonoran desert tortoises and cactus ferruginous pygmy owls — and disturb hundreds of Indigenous cultural sites.
The report is called Deadpool Highway, but it’s not named after a comic-book character. “Deadpool” is also what you call a reservoir that can no longer flow — which could soon be Arizona’s Lake Powell.
High Time to Protect These Imperiled Salmon
On Tuesday we petitioned to protect Washington coast spring-run Chinook salmon under the Endangered Species Act.
These magnificent Chinook return in spring from the ocean to rivers, staying for many months in deep pools until they spawn in the fall. But these treasures of the Pacific Northwest have declined drastically and are now at just a fraction of their historical abundance.
“To stop their slide toward extinction, spring Chinook salmon need federal protection now,” said the Center’s Jeff Miller.
Angela Manno’s Art and Activism
Artist and longtime Center supporter Angela Manno paints imperiled species — including a honeybee, pangolin, star cactus and blue iguana — in a contemporary icon style. Applying her training in Byzantine Russian iconography, she uses gold leaf, painted archways, and traditional materials.
“My aim is to exalt each species as irreplaceable, having intrinsic value, and to inspire action,” Angela said in a recent interview.
When she sells her art, she donates half the proceeds to the Center and other conservation groups — and until midnight on May 31, all donations to the Center’s Saving Life on Earth Fund will be doubled.
Buy something to support her work (and the Center).
That’s Wild: Mushrooms Are Singing in the Rain
A new study of the electrical signals of wild mushrooms — “trains of voltages,” in science speak — shows that the fungi are quiet in dry periods and emit more “noise” after they get wet. The fungi in question, Laccaria bicolor, grow around the roots of trees like birch, oak and pine.
There’s more to learn, but some scientists believe the signals are a form of language and the fungi may be communicating to coordinate growth or trade nutrients. Another theory is that mushrooms are quieter when dry because during those times they have less energy for chitchat.
Center for Biological Diversity | Saving Life on Earth
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Photo credits: Miami tiger beetle by Jonathan Mays/FWC; Dixie Valley toad andTiehm's buckwheat by Patrick Donnelly/Center for Biological Diversity; climate rally by Shadia Fayne Wood/Survival Media Agency; cactus ferruginous pygmy owl by Sky Jacobs; Chinook salmon courtesy CDFW; paintings by Angela Manno; elephant by Aardwolf6886/Flickr; wild mushrooms tapped for electrical signals by Yu Fukasawa.
Center for Biological Diversity
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Tucson, AZ 85702