May 202015

The Fish and Wildlife Service cannot enforce a rule prohibiting the interstate shipment of reticulated pythons or green anacondas, unless the destination is Florida or Texas, a federal judge ruled late Tuesday (U.S. Ass'n of Reptile Keepers v. Jewell, 13-2007 RDM, D.D.C.).

U.S. District Judge Randolph Moss granted a preliminary injunction sought by reptile dealers but delayed its effective date for two weeks. He also stayed proceedings in the case for 60 days so the government could appeal. The order follows. The accompanying opinion is here. Moss explained his reasoning in an opinion issued May 12.

Feb 102015

A lawsuit has been filed seeking a threatened listing under the Endangered Species Act for the blueback herring.

From the news release:

In August 2011, NRDC petitioned NMFS to list blueback herring as threatened under the ESA, and to designate critical habitat for the species. Two years later, the Service published its determination that the blueback herring was not likely to become in danger of extinction and does not warrant protection under the ESA—despite the government’s acknowledgement that the species was likely at or less than two percent of its historical baseline (based on catch levels) and that three out of four regional blueback herring populations in the U.S. were likely still decreasing. NRDC and Earthjustice, on behalf of several fishing and watershed groups, filed a 60-day notice of intent to sue for ESA protection of the imperiled river herring in October 2014.

Complaint (NRDC v. Sobeck, 15-198, D.D.C.)

The plaintiffs are NRDC, Anglers Conservation Network, Delaware River Shad Fishermen’s Association, Great Egg Harbor River Council, and Great Egg Harbor Watershed Association.