This fall the Center for Biological Diversity sued the California Department of Parks and Recreation for continuing to let off-road vehicles kill protected birds at Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area. Now the agency wants to finalize a permit dramatically expanding off-roading there under a "habitat conservation plan."
We're fighting this every step of the way, and there's something you can do to help.
The plan would greenlight motorized recreation across 1,370 acres of habitat for threatened snowy plovers and erase a third of the park's protected breeding areas for plovers and California least terns. It would let State Parks "take" — including kill — 67 plovers and 30 least terns every year, exempting off-roading, one of the birds' main threats, from regulation by the Endangered Species Act.
The plan also fails to address proposed off-roading expansion into the southern end of Oceano Dunes and planned development near Oso Flaco Lake that would damage habitat for endangered plants and destroy San Luis Obispo County's best bird habitat.
Tell the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to reject the plan and "take" permit, and instead force State Parks to reduce motorized recreation at the dunes and expand protected habitat areas for imperiled plovers and terns.