endangered species | KUOW News and Information

endangered species

Biologist Adrian Wolf searches the ground for something camouflaged in the dry prairie grass. Then he spots it: a baby streaked horned lark. Wolfs hands tremble as he puts a tiny silver identification band on its leg. I have an endangered species little life in my hand, he says, and then places the bird back in its nest. Only about 2,000 streaked horned larks are left on the planet. Wolf is trying to prevent the native Northwest songbirds from going extinct. But thats not an easy task...

Finally — some good news for the bees of Hawaii. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has given endangered status to seven species of yellow-faced bees native to the islands. These are "the first bees in the country to be protected under the Endangered Species Act," according to the Xerces Society , which advocated for the new designation. The new rule designating protections for the bees, published Friday in the Federal Register , states that yellow-faced bees are known "for their yellow-to...

Most populations of humpback whales no longer need endangered species protections, according to a decision by the National Marine Fisheries Service. The U.S. government listed all humpback whales as endangered back in 1970, after commercial whaling had drastically reduced their numbers. But now, officials say they have divided humpback whales into 14 distinct populations. And after a scientific review, they say that nine of those populations have recovered enough that they no longer need to...

Washington's increased bald eagle population may dismiss them from the endangered species list.
Flickr Photo/Kenneth Cole Schneider (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/jxtHAq

Nationally associated as an emblem of authority and statehood, bald eagles are "sensitive." At least that’s how they’re classified by the Washington State Wildlife Commission. But there's power in numbers -- and their population continues to grow.

South Africa will allow domestic trade of rhino horns again, after a seven-year ban. International trade of the horns is still barred. The Supreme Court of Appeal rejected the government's bid to keep the domestic moratorium in place, National Geographic reports . South Africa is "home to the world's largest rhino population, and nearly all of the world's 20,000 white rhinos," National Geographic adds. Rhino horns grow back after being cut off, so advocates of lifting the trade ban say rhinos...

Oregon Spotted Frog
Flickr Photo/USFWS Pacific Region, Teal Waterstrat (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/ajZhmE

On Monday federal officials defined the critical habitat for a rare Northwest creature: the Oregon spotted frog. That designation is required since the frog was listed as threatened in 2014. You'd be lucky to see or hear this frog.

Its populations were first damaged by trapping and logging, and more recently faced a threat from rat poison used by illegal marijuana farms in Southern Oregon and Northern California.
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife

A weasel-like creature that lives in northwest forests will remain unprotected. Thursday, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said it won't list the fisher as an endangered species. That decision could affect the animal's population across the west.

Wolf advocates are watching to see if Gov. Kate Brown will sign legislation they say slams the door on legal challenges to Oregons lifting of endangered-species protections for the gray wolf. Brown said on Thursday that her office will review the legislation before making a decision. On a bipartisan vote of 17-11 Wednesday, the state senate ratified a decision state wildlife regulators made last November to remove the gray wolf from the Oregon Endangered Species List. Amaroq Weiss with the...

Two men have been arrested in Portland on charges of smuggling wildlife into the U.S. after allegedly using an online business to ship orangutan skulls and other endangered wildlife parts through the mail. Federal agents arrested Eoin Ling Churn Yeng, 35, and Galvin Yeo Siang Ann, 33, on Friday afternoon when they arrived to meet with a business associate. Both men were identified as Malaysian nationals. The two men allegedly co-owned an online business that regularly smuggled endangered...

Oregon's Fish and Wildlife Commission voted Monday to remove wolves from the state's list of endangered species. The decision changes little in the short term for Oregons known population of 81 gray wolves. A state management plan would continue to permit killing wolves only if they're caught in the act of attacking or involved in repeated livestock damage. The vote followed a day-long public hearing that kept the commission in session until early evening. It clears the way for a decision in...

Commercial imports of elephant ivory have been banned by federal and international law for decades. But now wildlife activists are pressing West Coast states to pass their own laws to deter the poaching of elephants and rhinos.

US Rejects Protections For Greater Sage Grouse

Sep 22, 2015

The U.S. Interior Department says the greater sage grouse does not need federal protections across its 11-state western range. The long-awaited decision affects millions of acres across the Western states. Today Im proud to mark a milestone for conservation in America, because of an unprecedented effort by dozens of partners in 11 western states, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has determined that the greater sage grouse does not require protection under the Endangered Species Act, said...

The plight of greater sage grouse is at the top of mind for ranchers, conservationists and politicians across the West so much so that one ranch in southeastern Oregon has put a wildlife biologist on its payroll. Andrew Shields roams the Roaring Springs Ranch in Harney County every day, monitoring the progress of the imperiled bird. I see more wildlife species than people, and I dont think many folks can say that wildlife biologist or not, Shields said. One recent day, he turned his dusty...

A Texas hunter who paid $350,000 for the right to hunt a rare black rhino in Namibia has killed the animal. The hunt has drawn controversy and spurred debate over the best way to manage endangered wildlife. Corey Knowlton won an auction last January for a hunting permit that would allow him to kill a black rhino weighing around 3,000 pounds. "There are only an estimated 4,000 to 5,000 black rhinos living in the wild," Mark Memmott wrote for the Two-Way last year. "Namibian authorities issue...

Feb. 17, 2015 is a happy day for biologists Brian Bangs and Paul Sheerer. Today the Oregon chub, a tiny minnow that exists only in the Willamette Valley, is the first fish species to be officially taken off the endangered species list. Never heard of it? The Oregon chub is kind of an underdog. Not very many people know what they are. Actually, a lot of biologists dont know what they are, says Sheerer, who works for the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. They only grow to be about three...

Pages