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Center for     Biological     Diversity   

Our Newest Court Fight: Halting Wolf-killing in Washington

We're heading back to court, this time to save wolves in Washington state. On Monday the Center for Biological Diversity and partners filed a lawsuit to stop the state from killing even more wolves after members of the Smackout and Sherman packs were gunned down.

"We can't sit by and watch wildlife officials kill more wolves from Washington's small wolf population," said Amaroq Weiss, our West Coast wolf advocate. "Washingtonians want wolves recovered, not killed. The Department of Fish and Wildlife needs to listen to public opinion and consider the dire environmental costs of killing more wolves."

Washington's wolves were driven to extinction in the early 1900s via government-sponsored extermination; they began to recolonize the state very recently, growing into a fledgling population of about 20 confirmed packs by 2017.

Read more in The Seattle Times.

San Fernando Valley spineflower

Historic Agreement on Newhall: River and Wildlife Protections

For decades the Center has been fighting and litigating the Newhall Ranch development, a massive housing and commercial project outside of Los Angeles.

This week we and allies approved a historic legal settlement that preserves thousands of acres for wildlife, provides millions of dollars to protect the Santa Clara River, and requires stringent measures to cut greenhouse gases — like 10,000 solar installations.

"No matter what, this massive development was going to break ground in a matter of months, so we're glad to have these important benefits in place for wildlife, the climate and local communities," said the Center's Aruna Prabhala. "We'll be watching closely to make sure Newhall meets all the agreement's requirements, including protecting endangered fish, setting aside nearly 1,200 acres for the San Fernando Valley spineflower reintroduction and 10,000 solar installations."

Get more from KPCC News.

Revelator Interview: Ralph Steadman and 'Gonzovationists'

Detail of orangutan illustration by Ralph Steadman

Illustrator Ralph Steadman turns his iconic style toward some of the world's most endangered animals in his new book, Critical Critters. It's his third collaboration with writer, filmmaker and conservationist Ceri Levy.

The book is packed with portraits of pandas, tigers, vaquitas and dozens of other species, all depicted in the wild, paint-splattered style made famous by Steadman's collaborations with gonzo journalist Hunter S. Thompson.

Check out The Revelator for an interview with Steadman and Levy about wildlife, art, extinction and the importance of humor.

Desert horned lizard

Victory: Nevada Bans Commercial Reptile Collection

In response to work by the Center, dozens of scientists and hundreds of supporters, the Nevada Board of Wildlife Commissioners has voted to permanently ban commercial collection of reptiles in the state.

Previously Nevada was allowing unlimited for-profit reptile collection, causing dangerous population plunges in reptiles like chuckwallas and desert horned lizards. Commercial collectors have removed almost half a million reptiles from Nevada's public lands over the past 30 years. The vote on Saturday immediately halts commercial collection and will establish rules for a permanent ban.

"This is a huge win for our state's wildlife and people," said the Center's Nevada Director Patrick Donnelly. "Our remarkable reptiles have been exploited for profit for too long."

Read more in The Nevada Independent.

Ignite Change Has Launched — Join Us to Stand for Lands

Ignite Change launch participants

Ignite Change, the Center's new network of volunteer activists, is up and running. We had a wildly successful launch on Sunday, with more than 70 events around the country. Thank you.

The network's first campaign, Stand for Lands, is fighting to protect our national monuments and other public lands from Trump. In the coming weeks, we'll be pressuring members of Congress to stop efforts to open public lands up to more oil and gas drilling, grazing, logging and destruction. Check out these photos from Sunday's events and join Ignite Change.


Protections Won for Hawaiian Bird, Desert Turtle, Tiny Fish

Finally — after years of work by the Center and allies — three new species have gained federal protection. The Endangered Species Act now safeguards the ultra-rare Sonoyta mud turtle in Arizona; the 'i'wi, a bright-colored, breathtaking Hawaiian bird; and a small, speckled southern fish called the pearl darter.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service protected these species under two 2011 settlements with the Center and WildEarth Guardians, which have now led to protection decisions for 188 animals and plants. Eleven more species have been proposed for protection, with decisions expected by year's end.

"We're fortunate to have the incredibly effective Endangered Species Act to help these three precious species," said the Center's Noah Greenwald.

Read more in our press release.

Toughie, the last Rabbs' fringe-limbed tree frog

A year ago this week, Toughie — the last Rabbs' fringe-limbed tree frog on Earth — died at his home in the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Watch our video of Toughie, which uses extremely rare footage by world-renowned endangered species photographer Joel Sartore, and peer into the small, beautiful eyes of one whose kind will never again know existence.

El Jefe

Suit Filed to Save Jaguars From Rosemont Copper Mine

If completed, the controversial open-pit Rosemont copper mine in southern Arizona would destroy prime jaguar habitat — so the Center filed suit Monday in U.S. District Court to challenge a federal "biological opinion" that led to the mine's approval this summer.

"The Rosemont Mine would turn thousands of acres of the Coronado National Forest into a wasteland," said Marc Fink, a senior Center attorney. "The agencies found that it would permanently damage endangered species and precious groundwater resources. But they're still green-lighting a massive mine that will destroy habitat and suck the Santa Ritas dry."

In addition to hurting jaguars, Rosemont would ruin habitat for ocelots and more than a dozen other endangered species, from Chiricahua leopard frogs to fish like Gila chubs.

Read more in the Arizona Daily Star.

Don't Let These Orcas Slip Away

Southern Resident killer whale

We were saddened by news earlier this week that a young male orca known as "J52" had died, apparently from malnutrition. He was a member of the "Southern Resident" population, which makes its home in Washington's Puget Sound and migrates along the West Coast. The number of whales in this endangered population has fallen from 83 last year to only 76 today — the biggest year-to-year decline ever recorded.

Future whale deaths can be prevented. Check out this op-ed by Center Oceans Director Miyoko Sakashita and then take action.

Help the Center Win a Grant From CREDO

CREDO logo

Are you a CREDO Mobile customer?

If so, you can help the Center win a grant in support of our work to protect wildlife and wild places. CREDO Mobile invites its customers to nominate their favorite progressive organizations to apply for funding. This is an easy and quick way for you to make a potentially big impact.

Please take a moment to complete the short nomination form.

Mexican free-tailed bats

Wild & Weird: One Heck of a Big Bat Nursery in Texas

Head southwest from the town of Mason, Texas, and you'll find the Eckert James River Bat Cave — one of the biggest bat nurseries in the country.

Some 4 million female bats arrive here to roost from May through September. Most of these are pregnant when they arrive. In the cave females give birth to a single pup in June or July; the young grow quickly and can fly at about five weeks, but stay with their mothers until the return to Mexico in October.

Watch our video of Mexican free-tailed bats emerging from the Eckert James River Bat Cave on Facebook or YouTube.

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Photo credits: Wolves by Juan José González Vega/Wikimedia; San Fernando Valley spineflower being pollinated by an ant by Colleen Draguesku/USFWS; detail of orangutan illustration by Ralph Steadman; desert horned lizard by Robb Hannawacker/NPS; Ignite Change launch event participants courtesy Center for Biological Diversity; 'i'iwi by Ludovic Hirlimann/Wikimedia Commons; video still of Toughie, the last Rabbs' fringe-limbed tree frog, by Joel Sartore; El Jefe the jaguar courtesy Conservation CATalyst and the Center for Biological Diversity; Southern Resident killer whale by Miles Ritter/Flickr; CREDO logo; Mexican free-tailed bats emerging from the Eckert James River Bat Cave video still by Tanya Sommer/USFWS.

Center for Biological Diversity
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Tucson, AZ 85702