U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Protects Gunnison Sage-Grouse as Threatened Under Endangered Species Act

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) has determined that the Gunnison sage-grouse, a ground-dwelling bird found only in southwestern Colorado and southeastern Utah, requires the protection of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) as a threatened species.

The Service originally proposed to list the species as ‘endangered’ under the ESA in January 2013, but efforts by the two states, tribes, local communities, private landowners and other stakeholders to conserve the species and its habitat have helped reduce the threats to the bird sufficiently to give it the more flexibly protected status of ‘threatened.’ The Service’s efforts to work with plaintiffs to extend the court settlement deadline to allow more time for development of conservation commitments by counties and states were unsuccessful, and therefore the agency must proceed with this listing and critical habitat designation today.

Read More: http://www.fws.gov/mountain-prairie/pressrel/2014/11122014_ServiceProtectsGunnisonSageGrouseAsThreatenedUnderESA.php