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Yellow-billed cuckoo
Center for     Biological     Diversity   

Lawsuit Launched to Protect Threatened Songbird's Habitat

The Center for Biological Diversity has been fighting for 20 years to save the western yellow-billed cuckoo, a songbird that once ranged widely but is now down to just 350 pairs, mostly in Arizona, New Mexico and California.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service finally protected the species as threatened in 2014, also proposing safeguards for more than a half-million acres of this cuckoo's habitat. But the agency hasn't followed through — so this week we filed notice of a planned lawsuit over its inaction.

"After many years of delay, it's time for the Fish and Wildlife Service to protect the cottonwoods, willows and other streamside homes of this tenacious songbird," said the Center's Brian Segee.

Read more in our press release.

U.S. Supreme Court

Polluters Will Love Trump's Supreme Court Pick

President Donald Trump is trying to push the U.S. Supreme Court into dangerous new territory. We're troubled by his nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to replace Justice Kennedy.

"Polluters and corporations will love having Kavanaugh on the Supreme Court. The rest of us will suffer the costs for generations to come," said Center Senior Counsel Bill Snape. "He has a long, troubling record of being on the wrong side of issues like clean air and water, including a 2015 decision in a pollution case that would have had deadly consequences for people and wildlife. That was too much for the Supreme Court, which easily overturned it. This guy belongs nowhere near the Supreme Court."

Read more in Buzzfeed and stay tuned for how you can help.

$17 Million Won to Reduce Harms of SoCal Freeways

Juvenile burrowing owls

Good news: The Center and allies have won a $17 million settlement to reduce the environmental impact of two proposed freeway projects in Southern California's Riverside County, which suffers from some of the United States' worst air pollution.

The money will support measures to benefit both people and wildlife. These include installing air-filtration devices in homes and schools, using solar energy, instituting better safety measures, and acquiring and protecting habitat for imperiled species like burrowing owls and tricolored blackbirds. Read more.

Dwight Hammond and Steven Hammond

Outrageous: Trump Pardons Ranchers After Convictions

On Tuesday Trump pardoned Oregon ranchers Dwight Hammond Jr. and Steven Hammond, who were convicted in 2012 for a 2001 fire set on public lands. Their prison sentence was part of the impetus for the armed takeover of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge by right-wing militants in 2016.

"The Hammonds are dangerous people with a history of arson, illegal grazing and threatening federal officials," said Kierán Suckling, the Center's executive director. "Trump's pardon abandons human decency and will encourage more violence and extremism among his base."

Read more in the Los Angeles Times.

Summer Reading Suggestions From The Revelator


Ready to crack open a good book this summer? The Revelator has you covered.

The latest installment of "Revelator Reads" covers 15 new environmentally themed books. They include an examination of the water crisis in Flint, Mich., a meditation on the necessity of bees, a biography of a 17th-century ornithologist and even a textbook on wildlife crime.

Check out our list of summer reads.

Dusky gopher frog

Dozens of Groups Ask Supreme Court to Help Frogs

Center attorney Collette Adkins is fighting in the Supreme Court for Louisiana's few remaining dusky gopher frogs — and dozens of groups just filed "friend of the court" briefs supporting our position that these frogs' last scrap of habitat must stay protected.

At the behest of timber company Weyerhaeuser, the nation's highest court is considering whether to uphold the endangered frogs' protections — so we've intervened to defend them.

"It's inspiring to see economists and business owners and religious leaders urge the Supreme Court to protect these little frogs," said Adkins. "They're all uniting to save wildlife and the Endangered Species Act."

When picked up, gopher frogs cover their eyes with their forefeet, possibly to protect their faces until predators release them.

Read more in our press release.

BBQing? Do Right by Wildlife and the Planet

Vegan BBQ

This is barbeque season, and all those cookouts are cooking the planet. Between Memorial Day and Labor Day, Americans eat about 818 hot dogs per second — plus burgers, steaks and chicken.

Meat production causes greenhouse gas emissions, habitat loss, water use, pollution and other threats to wildlife. Luckily, with so many plant-based meat alternatives, it's easy to take extinction off your grill.

Watch and share our video comparing the environmental cost of two barbecues, and check out our Extinction-free BBQ menus.

Scott Pruitt

EPA: Scott Pruitt Is Out, Wheeler Is In

With the resignation of embattled, corrupt Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt, one Trump lackey — hell-bent on trashing vital clean-air and water rules and dismantling climate and public-health protections — has been replaced by another.

Andrew Wheeler, previously Pruitt's deputy, is taking the reins as acting EPA chief and will surely do his best to continue Pruitt's slash-and-burn campaign against U.S. environmental safeguards.

Unlike Pruitt, Wheeler is a D.C. insider and former coal lobbyist — and may prove ruthlessly effective at attacking key laws to swell the bottom lines of polluting industries.

"It's a brave new world of pro-fossil-fuel ideologues who seem not to care about anything but industry profits, the rest of the country be damned," said Center attorney Bill Snape.

Read more.

African elephant

Biodiversity Briefing: The Fight Against Trophy Hunting

In our latest quarterly "Biodiversity Briefing" phone call, Executive Director Kierán Suckling talks about trophy hunting's harm to conservation, its relation to various laws, and what the Center's doing to save imperiled species from this threat.

You may already know trophy hunting is detrimental to U.S. species like Yellowstone grizzly bears, which we're fighting hard to defend from being shot in Wyoming and Idaho. Kierán also explains how we're helping animals overseas being poached for the black market — like in Africa, where one elephant is illegally killed every 26 minutes for its ivory.

These personal phone briefings, including Q&A sessions, are open to all members of the Center's Leadership Circle and Owls Club. For information on how to join and be invited to participate live on the calls, email Senior Development Associate Celia Bavier or call her at (520) 623-5252 x 312.

Listen to the briefing.


Wild & Weird: Meanwhile in Florida

What do you get when you combine 2 million alligators and 19 million humans? Answer: the Sunshine State of mind.

Check out this remote camera footage of one domestic cat's experience creeping through a Florida swamp at night. It's on Facebook and YouTube.

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Photo credits: Yellow-billed cuckoo by
Seabamirum/Flickr; U.S. Supreme Court building by justindc/Flickr; juvenile burrowing owls by Alan D. Wilson/Nature's Pics Online; Dwight and Steven Hammond courtesy U.S. Department of Justice; bee by Stefan Partridge/Flickr; dusky gopher frog courtesy USFWS; vegan BBQ by dyrsfrihet/Flickr; Scott Pruitt by Gage Skidmore/Flickr; African elephant by antpitta/Flickr; alligator by Alyssa Johnson/USFWS.

Center for Biological Diversity
P.O. Box 710
Tucson, AZ 85702
United States