OVER U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE DENIAL
OF ESA PROTECTION FOR IMPERILED SIERRA AMPHIBIANS
January 17, 2003 the Center for Biological Diversity and Pacific
Rivers Council filed notice of their intent to sue the U.
S. Fish and Wildlife Service for illegally delaying Endangered
Species Act protections for the the Sierra Nevada mountain
yellow-legged frog and the Yosemite toad. The Service, under
court order to make listing determinations as a result of
a previous Center lawsuit, determined that listing was warranted
for both species, but is "precluded" by higher priorities.
February, 2000, the Center for Biological Diversity and other
environmental groups submitted formal petitions with the U.S.
Fish and Wildlife Service to protect the Yosemite toad and
Sierra Nevada mountain yellow-legged frog under the Endangered
Species Act. Both species have declined dramatically and
will become extinct if immediate conservation action is not
In 1993, the Center filed a formal petition to list the Sonoran
tiger salamander as endangered throughout its range in Arizona
and Sonora, Mexico. The species was federally protected in
1997. Scientists are now developing a recovery plan to ensure
its continued survival.
by Vance Vredenburg