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Endangered Species Act

Casper – “The Endangered Species Act (ESA) is focused on listing and not on recovery,” said Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead during an Aug. 26 press conference at Grey Reef Access Area southwest of Casper. “My initiative as chairman of the Western Governor’s Association (WGA) is to focus on the ESA and engage western states and their people in this issue.”

Mead, who began his term as WGA chairman in June, was joined by WGA Executive Director Jim Ogsbury for the announcement. Mead noted that WGA is uniquely poised to develop bipartisan solutions to the problems with the ESA.

“We have an opportunity to develop resolutions that are bipartisan in nature,” he said of WGA. “As Governor Herbert of Utah says, ‘When western governors come together, it isn’t the Republican or Democrat party, it is the common sense party,’ and the history of WGA shows that is exactly right.”

Working in the West

Because of the profound impact of the ESA, Mead noted that the issue is one that all western states can come together on to develop solutions.

“We want to engage the western states and the people of the West to help us answer some questions,” he said. “How can the ESA be improved? Where is it working? Where is it not working? What things need to be done in terms of rules and regulations to make the Act work better?”

After selecting a team representing a wide array of interests to lead the effort, Mead noted that WGA will hold the first of five listening sessions in late October or early November this year. The first session will be held in Wyoming.

“We want to engage other people in this issue and hear all the suggestions from the public,” he said. “By early next year, we will have some draft language in place on what the changes should be.”

By next June’s WGA meeting, to be held in Wyoming, Mead said the western governors will come together to vote on the issue.

“If we get some good strong language that is viewed as very positive, the next step will be to run a national resolution for the National Governor’s Association,” Mead added. “This is a great opportunity for our western governors and others to do the hard, heavy work and build on it from a national level.”

ESA statistics

“The ESA is intended to protect and recover listed species,” Mead explained during the event. “Presently, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) places a great deal of focus on listing and not enough focus on recovery.”

Mead cited that 1,568 species are listed as endangered in the U.S. An additional 652 species from around the globe are also included, for a total of 2,221 endangered species on the planet.

“Since the ESA was enacted in 1973, 2,280 species have been listed globally,” he continued. “Only 59 of those 2,280 have ever been delisted. Of those, 10 went extinct, 30 recovered and 19 were delisted due to errors in the original data and the species didn’t warrant protection.”

Mead continued, “That means roughly one percent of all species that have been listed have ever been delisted. That is not a story of success.”

Inside Wyoming

In Wyoming, Mead noted that citizens have a great desire to protect species and conserve species in the state.

“We see a high level of frustration when we do what we need to protect a species,” he continued, citing the grey wolf as an example.

After over a year of work with then-Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar on wolves, along with Wyoming Game and Fish Director Scott Talbott, Wyoming developed a state plan to manage wolves responsibly to maintain a healthy and genetically viable population.

“We worked hard and came to an agreement that, while not perfect, did all it needed to do to make sure wolves continue to not only exist but to thrive in Wyoming,” Mead explained. “Despite the agreement, we find out that the plan is not sufficient, even though, in the Judge’s opinion, wolves have more than fully recovered.”

The same is true of the grizzly bear, Mead added.

Wyoming, he continued, is home to a number of endangered and threatened species, and the state has led efforts to recover many species, including the sage grouse.

Building on success

“Wyoming, of any state, has citizens who have a great appreciation for wildlife,” Mead said. “We love the fact that our 11,000 ranches and farms have done so much to preserve so many species and help species thrive.”

Wyoming has a strong record of bringing diverse interests together to develop plans to conserve species, Mead added, citing Bighorn sheep and sage grouse as two prime examples.

“We are going to engage industry, agriculture, environmental groups, conservation groups and everyone across the West to see how we can do better with regards to the ESA,” Mead said. “I’m convinced that collectively, we can do better than only delisting one percent of all the species that have been listed.”

“We have over 2,000 species on the list and only one percent delisted, something is wrong with the ESA,” Mead emphasized. “I think we can come together, despite political differences, to resolve issues that are of common importance in the West.”

Saige Albert is managing editor of the Wyoming Livestock Roundup and can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Washington, D.C. – On July 17, Wyoming’s Gov. Matt Meat (R) joined U.S. Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) and members of the Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW) to testify on draft legislation, the Endangered Species Act (ESA) Amendments  of 2018.

Barrasso drafted the legislation, which would reauthorize the ESA for the first time since 1993. The bill elevates the role of states and increases transparency on implementation of the Act, while also prioritizing resources to meet conservation goals and promotes conservation and recovery. 

The bill is based on bipartisan efforts from the Western Governors’ Association, an effort which included National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), the Public Lands Council (PLC), state wildlife agencies, conservation groups including Audubon Society and The Nature Conservancy, Environmental Defense Fund, energy companies and sportsman’s groups.

“This effort really represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to update and modernize ESA for the first time since it was passed 45 years ago,” said NCBA’s Ed Frank.

Mead spearheaded the WGA effort. 

Hearing 

Mead began by touting some of the success of ESA, including the reintroduction of black-footed ferrets across eight states when the species was thought to be extinct. 

Further, he cited the protection of grizzly bears, a species that has grown from 136 bears in 1975 to conservative estimates of more than 700 bears on delisting in 2017.

“These success stories are a testament to the ESA’s ability to prevent extinction,” Mead said. 

However, Mead said ESA is far from perfect, citing five lawsuits and 15 years that were required to delist gray wolves and a second round of litigation on grizzly bears.

“Nearly 30 percent of all listed species have no recovery plan, and litigation dictates U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) priorities and workload,” he says.

Amendments

Since ESA has not been amended substantively since 1988, Mead said the time to discuss amendments is now.

While he has supported legislation through Congress that protects species from being listed or delists them, Mead also commented, “I have to frankly say that the process of Congress, by popular vote, of making the decisions on individual species is not the best way to go.”

“Addressing root problems would obviate the need for Congress to intervene with respect to individual species. That would be better legislation, better policy and better for wildlife,” he said.

Mead noted that a real, bipartisan solution to correct the ESA would provide for cooperation and collaboration and would yield better results than “bitter partisanship and harsh rhetoric.”

Inside the bill

During his testimony, Mead also highlighted several pieces of the bill that would be particularly helpful to improving the bill and increasing its efficacy.

As an example of a breakdown of the bill, Mead explained that timelines within the bill, coupled by the number of species proposed for listing, provides and encourages endless litigation. 

The draft bill helps to address this challenge through a National Listing Work Plan at U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to prioritize findings and ensure decisions are made within seven years. 

“The discussion draft also enhances the role of states,” Mead continued. “It contemplates states leading recovery teams, developing and implementing recovery plans, consulting with federal agencies in a meaningful way on all aspects of ESA implementation and providing helpful species data to the FWS.”

“We have an opportunity to improve ESA for wildlife and people,” Mead added. “We can encourage innovative conservation practices and facilitate faster and more cost-effective species recovery.”

After the hearing

Following the hearing, Mead told PLC’s Ethan Lane, “I’m really encouraged EPW is taking this up. It is a difficult issue – there’s no question about it, and people get very passionate about it, but this is an issue that governors struggle with.”

The process of protecting species provides challenges because there is seemingly no end result from spending local, state and federal funds to protect species.

“I’m really hoping this committee can take the bill to the next step because, in 40-plus years, we’ve learned a lot,” Mead continued. “In 40-plus years, we’ve had some success, and we’ve had some failures.” 

Mead cited the gray wolf, which has been in court for 20 years and has far exceeded recovery goals as one example of a failure. 

“For some, I think we can’t get it delisted because some don’t like the idea of state management,” he explained. “I think what we’re seeing in the draft legislation is states will have a greater role, which I think is absolutely for states and the species. I think we can do a better job.” 

Further, Mead said he hopes his message resonated with a bipartisan audience, and he’s optimistic for the bill’s future. 

Saige Albert, managing editor of the Wyoming Livestock Roundup, can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Evanston – “Ravens have been an economic and ecological problem causing damage,” says Dan Madsen, a certified crop adviser in Fremont County. “We have a five-county raven control program that was spurred by larger entities and weed and pest districts.”

With municipalities, large companies, livestock producers and more expressing concerns over the detrimental impact seen by ravens, particularly in southwest Wyoming, efforts have been put in place to attempt to control the populations. 

“I’ve been dealing with predators most of my life,” says Rod Merrell of USDA Wildlife Services. “In southwest Wyoming, in my opinion, ravens are probably as damaging as any vertebrate that we have, as far as their impacts on livestock production, wildlife and human health and safety.”

Recent problem

“Raven populations have increased in Wyoming, especially in southwest Wyoming, by as much as 1500 percent since 1960, this sharp increase is likely due to these highly-adaptable birds taking advantage of human made resources.” Merrell says, noting that area sheep producers in particular have seen dramatic impacts. 

Beginning in the 1990s, Merrell notes the first documentation of predation by ravens on lambs occurred. 

“Predation has escalated considerably over the years,” he continues. 

Ravens kill livestock by pecking at the eyes and umbilical cords of newborn lambs and calves. 

“The newborn animals either bleed to death or die of shock,” Merrell says. “The first documentation of depredation in calves was in 2005 in Uinta County. It has become an even bigger problem now.”

While losses are difficult to quantify, Merrell says they are considerable, and complaints from cattle producers have escalated dramatically in recent years.

In addition to depredation, ravens create health and human safety issues at industrial facilities because they congregate in such large numbers. 

“Ravens have escalated in industrial facilities, and their roosts are huge in some places,” Merrell says. “We’ve seen roosts with as many as 300 birds.”

The resulting fecal matter creates bacterial concerns, among other safety issues. At the same time, removal efforts are both expensive and time-consuming. 

Regulation project

Because ravens are regulated under the National Migratory Bird Act, state wildlife agencies have very little control over populations. 

“In April 2012, the Wyoming Game and Fish Department requested lethal control of ravens at four locations in southwest Wyoming,” Merrell notes.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has the authority to grant permits to control migratory birds, such as ravens, for a variety of reasons, including reducing incidence of livestock depredation and to reduce the risk of livestock disease. 

“The other reason we went after this project is to help alleviate human health and safety concerns from raven roosts and nests,” Merrell explains. 

“We started a control project encompassing Fremont, Sweetwater, Sublette, Lincoln and Uinta counties,” he adds.

The project includes 10 large roosts and locations at landfills across the southwest part of the state with the goal of reducing populations. 

Control efforts

“We aren’t trying to eradicate the species,” Merrell clarifies. “We are just trying to bring population numbers back down to normal levels.”

Using a site-specific methodology, Merrell notes that ravens were targeted with an avicide called DRC-1339. 

“We went out to landfill sites prior to placing bait to count the ravens,” he says. “Then, we take high-speed photographs and count the birds on the computer. It works quite accurately.”

After counting birds, appropriate avicide levels are determined. 

“We acquired supplemental label use so we could use dog food as the carrier,” Merrell also notes, adding that typically, meat baits are utilized as the carrier. “Meat baits are extremely labor intensive and not as effective.”

Additionally, FWS also approved the use of DRC-1339 for human health and safety, whereas in the past it was only available for use for livestock depredation. 

After applying the bait, the remaining population of ravens was estimated by the same method to calculate initial populations. Take numbers must be reported to FWS. 

“It is difficult to calculate take because it takes 24 to 72 hours for the ravens to expire,” Merrell says. “Take numbers are also reported by environmental specialists at industrial sites, so we can get an accurate reflection of take.”

Results

In the first year of the project, Merrell notes that numbers were reduced. 

For example, in the Rock Springs landfill, 330 ravens were counted in 2013. The following year, approximately 130 birds were counted. In the Green River landfill, 65 birds were noted in 2013, and 60 were counted in 2014. 

“There is an interesting phenomenon between Green River and Rock Springs,” Merrell explains. “I’m quite certain the birds were utilizing both landfills.”

In Kemmerer in 2013, well over 200 birds were counted, and only 20 were identified in 2014. 

“We can’t attribute the entire population decrease to the avicide,” he continues. 

Numbers nearly halved in the Big Piney landfill, and decreased from 150 to 90 in Farson. 

In Fremont County, raven populations were more consistent from 2013-14, but Merrell also notes that retention of young ravens was very good following treatments. 

Additionally, bait application was later in the year as a result of permit delay times, which may impact effectiveness.

“These numbers represent reductions of the population from 31 percent in 2013 to as high as 68 percent population reduction in 2014,” Merrell said. “If we count the overall number of birds surveyed, there was a 40 percent reduction in populations. We believe this is a very conservative estimate.”

Benefits

Merrell also notes that direct benefits were seen as a result of the project. 

“Livestock depredation dropped 79 percent in 2013, and depredation was almost non-existent in 2014 compared to what had been seen in the last 15 years.”

Additionally, complaints from the industry about human health and safety concerns dropped 100 percent as a result of the project, with no complaints in 2014. 

With the hope of continuing to positively impact raven populations, Merrell says they hope to be consistent with their treatment to bring birds back in line with acceptable numbers. 

“I’m confident we are going to have to continue treating because of the prolific nature of ravens,” Merrell comments. “We will continue to apply at some level or another.”

Sage grouse benefits

Raven control is suspected to benefit sage grouse populations, as well, says Rod Merrell of USDA’s Wildlife Services.

“Studies have shown that overpopulation of ravens can have negative impacts on sage grouse populations,” he says, noting that most studies are relatively recent. “It is proven that ravens definitely have an impact.”

“We are doing studies now on the benefits for sage grouse,” Merrell says.

A study is currently being conducted in Fremont County using 40 artificial nests. 

“We use brown chicken eggs in the same habitat as sage grouse nests, and we place trail cameras to identify what destroys the nests,” he says. “Out of the 75 percent of nests that were destroyed, ravens were 80 to 85 percent of the problem.”

Magpies were the next leading cause of nest destruction.

“After we started treating Fremont County’s landfills, we saw a 64 percent decrease in nest destruction in 2013 and 68 percent reduction in 2014,” Merrell adds. 

 

Madsen and Merrell addressed the 2014 Wyoming Weed and Pest Annual Convention in Rock Springs. 

Saige Albert is managing editor of the Wyoming Livestock Roundup and can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Although the Preble’s meadow jumping mouse has been relisted in Wyoming, many who are involved with the issue don’t think the decision will have immediate or operation-changing effects on agriculture.
“The impact to agricultural operations will be minimal. It may be an inconvenience, but the listing shouldn’t cause an increase in expenses or a change in activities,” says U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service biologist Pat Deibert, who works from Cheyenne.
However, she says problems could arrive with projects that use federal funding, or state funding with federal ties, because of increased review.
“There could potentially be implications for folks who are waiting for funding to do work in riparian areas,” says Deibert. “It doesn’t mean they won’t be able to get those funds – it just may delay them.”
Although Deibert predicts minimal impacts to the agricultural industry, Renee Taylor of Taylor Environmental Consulting says it could be a big deal for the Niobrara Shale oil play, as well as for those who would like to build new houses or sheds on their private property. With respect to the energy industry, she says it’s relatively easy to avoid Preble’s habitat, because standard stipulations already direct oil and gas to stay 500 feet from riparian corridors.
The relisting, a decision made July 7, won’t actually take effect until Aug. 6, a date set by the judge. Deibert says that nothing on the ground or in the mouse’s habitat spurred the relisting decision – it was simply that the judge found fault with the FWS policy that allowed the mouse to be listed in one state and not another, using the state line as a boundary.
“We are disappointed in the ruling,” says Wyoming Farm Bureau Executive Vice President Ken Hamilton. “I don’t think we were in danger of having the mouse go extinct here in Wyoming.”
In 1998, the FWS listed the mouse as “threatened” under the ESA in Colorado and Wyoming; in 2003, the agency initiated efforts to designate “critical habitat,” which it revised in December 2010. In July 1999, the FWS received petitions to remove the mouse from the ESA list, but, in December 2003, refused to take action.              In that same month, the State of Wyoming filed a petition to delist the mouse, and in February 2005 the FWS concluded delisting was warranted and initiated rulemaking to do so. In February 2006 the FWS extended the time to take final agency action on the proposed delisting.
Meanwhile, in March 2007 the Solicitor of the Department of the Interior issued an opinion concluding that the ESA permitted a species to be delisted in a part of its range while it retained its ESA protection elsewhere. In November 2007, FWS proposed to determine that the animal was no longer threatened in Wyoming and could be delisted. In July 2008 the FWS withdrew ESA protection for the Preble’s mouse in Wyoming.
Taylor says her research, funded by True Ranches, helped demonstrate that the mouse was much more broadly distributed in the state than anybody ever thought, and that the population was stable and sound, and that the subspecies is alive and well.
“The agency was able to determine that the threats to the mouse in Colorado don’t exist in Wyoming,” says Taylor, noting that along Colorado’s Front Range every riparian or stream corridor from Interstate 25 to the base of the Rockies contains either a housing development or a gravel pit.
“Those are things that threaten the mouse,” says Taylor, noting that some tried to make the case that livestock grazing was as detrimental as the development. “We were able to demonstrate through the historical record that, when the mouse was first found in 1904 by Chugwater, the habitat wasn’t nearly as good or as stable as it is today. There was little or no riparian habitat then, but now it’s back, and it’s beautiful.”
“In Wyoming we don’t have the urbanization in riparian corridors, or the gravel pits, so the Service was able to say the threats don’t exist in Wyoming, and they delisted,” says Taylor, adding that the state line was chosen as a simple way for people to know whether or not they were in the listed area.
In June 2009, several environmental groups filed a lawsuit in Colorado federal district court to challenge the July 2008 rule. In August 2009, the district court granted the right of the Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation and the Wyoming Stock Growers Association to intervene to defend the decision.
“The listing goes back to 1998, and with that we will restore the 4(d) rule,” says Deibert of the court’s most recent decision. The rule exempts certain agricultural activities from being considered an interference with a listed species.
“It basically says you can continue with normal agricultural activities, as long as it’s not your intent to kill the mouse,” she explains. “For folks who are grazing, and have good riparian management, this listing should not be an issue.”
“If you’ve traditionally hayed, your fine. If you switch crops to something that will require extra tillage, you might want to talk to someone, but that most likely won’t be in riparian areas, anyway,” she adds.
The mouse, which lives in southeast Wyoming riparian areas, can be found from Interstate 25 clear to the top of the Laramie Range, says Taylor.
“The listing applies to the whole state, but the animal is distributed only to Albany, Laramie, Platte, Goshen and Converse counties,” says Deibert. “It’s a riparian species that wants to be near water, and they’re underground for nine months of the year.”
Taylor says the mouse “adores” noxious weeds, and that the more nasty, snarly and wicked a place is, the better the mouse likes it.
“The mouse is alive and well and does not need to be relisted in the state of Wyoming,” says Taylor. “If you’re good to the riparian community, you’ll be good to the mouse, and we were able to demonstrate that the livestock industry has been good to riparian corridors, and thus to the mouse.”
Christy Martinez is managing editor of the Wyoming Livestock Roundup and can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Casper – On March 12, three ag agencies whose territories span from New Mexico to Wyoming partnered to intervene in yet another lawsuit that could have a dramatic impact on the management of agricultural lands in the West.
    The Colorado Farm Bureau, the Colorado Cattlemen’s Association and the Wyoming Stock Growers Association (WSGA) have joined together with Colorado attorney Kent Holsinger to intervene in a lawsuit brought by Forest Guardians and the Biodiversity Conservation Alliance in 2006 against the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS).
    This particular lawsuit focuses on a small bird known as the mountain plover, whose summer range is from New Mexico up through Wyoming and even into Montana.
    “The Petroleum Association had intervened earlier, and we had looked into it, but at the time we were in the process of intervening in the sage grouse lawsuit and that was our priority,” says WSGA Executive Vice President Jim Magagna. Now that the sage grouse issue is halted for the moment, he says the plover has come back into the spotlight.
    “The interesting thing is the plover is a species that thrives in areas that are heavily grazed or disturbed,” he notes. “It’s not a sagebrush obligate species. The plover would have different implications than the sage grouse or the pygmy rabbit, but nevertheless it would restrict what could be done on private and public lands.”
    “This is a bird of disturbance, and it likes bare ground and it’s very visual,” says Wyoming FWS biologist Pat Deibert. “It wants to see everything that’s going on around it, and it rarely nests in vegetation taller than four inches.”
    She says the plover is often associated with prairie dog towns and areas with little vegetation. “I’ve seen them on windswept, sparse plains,” she says. Mountain plover are found throughout Wyoming, except for mountain areas. “They’re a secretive little plains bird, and most people would mistake them for a killdeer,” she adds.
    In 2003 the environmentalists challenged a decision by the FWS that said listing the mountain plover under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) was not warranted. According to attorney Holsinger, the case was filed in southern California’s Ninth Circuit, a court often chosen by environmentalist groups.
    “We determined the species did not warrant listing because it was found in greater abundance in agricultural fields than we thought,” says Deibert. A part of the bird’s habitat is tilled ag land, so she says a concern was that the birds would set up a nest only to have it plowed under during field work.
    “A program was started to mark the nests, after which the farmer could go around them, and that helps the birds in productivity on ag lands,” she says. “That was a measure taken by the agriculture industry that led us to decide the species did not warrant listing.”
    “When we made the ‘not warranted’ finding, the mountain plover did not meet our definition for listing,” she notes. “The estimates for Wyoming came in a lot higher than was originally thought, and we do already provide language for these birds indicating that landowners need to take care to minimize disturbance to prairie dog towns when the birds are nesting.”
    Deibert says it’s really hard to find the mountain plovers unless you know what you’re looking for. “You’ll never see them because they’ll leave their nests when you’re still several hundred yards away and finding their nests is really hard. In order to locate one you have to see the mother or father get off it and fly away.”
    Although the bird seems to tolerate disturbance, biologists aren’t yet sure how much it affects their productivity. “In areas where there’s constant activity, such as drilling for oil and gas, we don’t know how frequently they’re successfully reproducing,” she says.
    To help find that out, United States Geologic Survey Ecologist Natasha Kotliar has been working on a BLM-funded project that was in pilot stages last summer. “They’re interested in the effects of energy development on mountain plover, so we’re working on areas to the north and south of Wamsutter that have a gradient of well densities and roads.”
    She says they are going to get the study in place this summer, which will include monitoring the birds’ density and habitat use among the variations in well and road densities.
    “They’re hard birds to sample, so we spent a lot of time on methodology and study design to make sure we’d get a good sample,” she says. “There are quite a few plover in that area.”
    Kotliar says one thing the BLM is interested in finding through the study is how effective their lease stipulations – such as waiting to put in well pads until after the breeding season and how much traffic is allowed on roads - are in minimizing disturbance to the birds.
    “They’re somewhat tolerant of disturbance,” says Kotliar of the birds, “But there may be some point in which they can’t tolerate it and a threshold where disturbance does become a problem.”
    One concern for the mountain plover that is out of Wyoming’s control is the birds’ exposure to contaminants in their winter range – California. “The birds don’t usually show up in Wyoming until around April,” says Deibert. “The concern is that there’s a lot of stress on the females laying their clutches if they’ve been exposed to contaminants. There are links between the high levels of contaminants we find in them and how those affect their ability to reproduce and get through migration to and from California.”
    “Until we put the mountain plover on our list, people didn’t even know where they were,” comments Deibert. “Colorado was thought to be their stronghold, but we found their range is shared between Wyoming and Colorado and even up into Montana.”
    “The status in the lawsuit right now is that the parties are arguing over what will or will not be included in the administrative record in the case, and that should be resolved by the end of the month,” says Holsinger. “Sometime after that the court will hear motions for summary judgment in the case.”
    As evidence for his side of the case, he says there are “tremendous conservation efforts” already in place for mountain plover, from federal lands to voluntary private conservation efforts between landowners and Farm Bureau and bird conservation groups. “There are tremendous amounts of good things going on for the mountain plover and evidence showing it shouldn’t be listed,” he says.  
    According to the memorandum in support of intervention, “A listing of the mountain plover as threatened or endangered under the ESA would harm the Intervenor-Applicants by impairing existing conservation efforts, in which some of the Intervenor-Applicants’ members are participants. The ESA creates disincentives to landowners and industry, often restricting the ability to manage for species.”
    “History shows that an ESA listing is bad not only for the landowner, but also for the mountain plover itself,” says Holsinger.  “The ESA has had less than one percent of listed species ever recovered. The ESA just adds layer after layer of bureaucracy that gets in the way of good management and stewardship.”
    Christy Hemken is assistant editor of the Wyoming Livestock Roundup. Send comments on this article to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..