Tuesday, February 2, 2016
Amendment Aims to Strip ESA Protection for Endangered Mexican Wolves
U.S. Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) introduced an amendment to the Senate Energy Bill (S. 2012) which, if passed and signed into law, would remove federal protections for the critically endangered Mexican gray wolf - a species already on the brink of extinction.
Sen. Flake's amendment would direct U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to determine whether there are at least 100 wild wolves remaining in the recovery area, and if so, Mexican gray wolves will lose endangered species act protections permanently.
Please urge your senators to oppose any legislation that takes aim at critically endangered wildlife!
This is urgent, and we appreciate your consideration. Please take action today.
The Mexican gray wolf (Canis lupus baileyi) or “lobo” is the most genetically distinct lineage of gray wolves in the Western Hemisphere, and one of the most endangered mammals in North America. By the mid-1980s, hunting, trapping, and poisoning caused the extinction of lobos in the wild, with only a handful remaining in captivity. In 1998 the wolves were reintroduced into the wild as part of a federal reintroduction program under the Endangered Species Act. In 2015 there was a single wild population comprising only 110 individuals and USFWS will announce results of the current population survey any day now.
As a participant in the federal Species Survival Plan (SSP) for the Mexican gray wolf, the Wolf Conservation Center (WCC) plays a critical role in preserving and protecting the imperiled species through carefully managed breeding and reintroduction. To date, the WCC remains one of the largest holding facilities for the rare species and four wolves from the Center have been given the extraordinary opportunity to resume their rightful place on the wild landscape.