Feds delay wolverine listing decision

Wolverine. Photo courtesy Roy Anderson/USFWS.

Wolverine. Photo courtesy Roy Anderson/USFWS.

Not everyone is convinced that the species is threatened by global warming

By Summit Voice

FRISCO — Federal biologists last week said they aren’t quite ready to make a final decision about endangered species status for wolverine. The listing deadline has been pushed back by six months for another review of the science — a step that’s taken when there is “substantial scientific disagreement.”

“During the peer review process on our proposed rule to list the wolverine as threatened, we received a variety of opinions from the scientific community concerning the information we used to develop the proposed rules,” the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said in a statement. Background on wolverine conservation online here.

“Specifically, some peer reviewers questioned the information we used to describe wolverine habitat, and estimates of the likely impacts to wolverine habitat from future climate change,” USFWS biologists said.

Based on recent comments, the agency will extending the deadline for the final listing decision by 6 months to further evaluate areas of scientific disagreement and uncertainty as they relate to the wolverine listing decision. The new deadline for a final rule or withdrawal of the proposal will be August 4, 2014.

A Federal Register notice to be posted in January will specify  the kinds of information the Service is seeking.  The notice and proposed rules are online at http://www.regulations.gov at Docket No. FWS–R6–ES–2012–107 for the proposed threatened status for North American wolverine.  Copies of the proposed rules are also available at http://www.fws.gov/mountain-prairie/species/mammals/wolverine/.

Comments:

(1) Electronically:

 Go to the Federal eRulemaking Portal:  http://www.regulations.gov.  In the Keyword box, enter the appropriate Docket No.:  Docket No. FWS–R6–ES–2012–107 for the proposed threatened status for North American wolverine.  Then, in the Search panel on the left side of the screen, under the Document Type heading, check on the Proposed Rules link to locate the proposed rule.  You may submit a comment by clicking on “Comment Now!”

(2) By hard copy:

For the proposed threatened status for the North American wolverine, submit by U.S. mail or hand-delivery to:  Public Comments Processing, Attn:  FWS–R6–ES–2012–107; Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 222; Arlington, VA 22203.

We request that you send comments only by the methods described above.  We will post all comments on http://www.regulations.gov.  This generally means that we will post any personal information you provide us.

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