Good News for the Humboldt Marten
The US Fish and Wildlife Service took action this week on EPIC and the Center for Biological Diversity ‘s petition to list the Humboldt Marten under the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA). According to correspondence to the petitioners dated February 3, the agency aims to publish the 90 day finding –the first step toward potential ESA listing– either “late this fiscal year or during the first half of fiscal year 2011.“
This comes as a welcome development, departing from the October 2010 announcement by the Service that it would not be able to work on the petition this year, citing budgetary restrictions. See Scott Greacen’s article entitled, “Feds to Critically Endangered Humboldt Marten: You’re On Your Own ”.
According to correspondence from the Service to the petitioners, funding has become available and the Arcata Office of the Fish and Wildlife Service will be the lead Office conducting the finding work.
The Humboldt marten is a cat-sized carnivore related to minks and otters that lives only in coastal, old-growth forests in Northern California and southern Oregon. Because nearly all of its old-growth forest habitat has been destroyed by logging, the Humboldt marten is so rare that it was believed extinct for 50 years.
To download the Petition to List the Humboldt Marten under the Endangered Species Act, click here .