The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) announced a proposal to protect seven Brazilian bird species as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), August 12, 2009. If made final, the measure would extend ESA protection to these species. The decision by the Service was published in the August 12, 2009 Federal Register.
Addition of a foreign species to the federal list of threatened and endangered species places restrictions on the importation of either the animal or its parts, according to the government.
The seven species are all native to the Atlantic Forest and neighboring regions of southeastern Brazil and include: the black-hooded antwren (Formicivora erythronotos); Brazilian merganser (Mergus octosetaceus); cherry-throated tanager (Nemosia rourei); fringe-backed fire-eye (Pyriglena atra); Kaempfer’s tody-tyrant (Hemitriccus kaempferi); Margaretta’s hermit (Phaethornis margarettae); southeastern rufous-vented ground-cuckoo (Neomorphus geoffroyi).
In July of 2008, the Service published a notice in the Federal Register announcing its petition findings for foreign species and announced that the listing of 30 foreign species, including these seven, is warranted. After studying the available scientific and commercial information regarding the threats to the species, the Service has concluded that these seven species should be identified under a single proposed rule for three reasons:
All seven species are found in the Atlantic Forest and southeastern region of Brazil.
The species are subject to similar threats, including small population sizes, habitat loss due to deforestation and ongoing land use practices.
Combining species that face similar threats allows the Service to maximize limited resources and increase its ability to complete the listing process for warranted-but precluded species.
Of the remaining 23 foreign species, proposed listing rules have since been published for 10 species, and proposed listing rules for the remaining 13 species are scheduled to be published in the Federal Register by the end of December 2009, according to USFWS.
The Service is seeking additional information on the status of the seven bird species from all available sources, including peer reviewers, scientific researchers, non government organizations, government agencies, range countries and individuals.
The Service will accept comments and information concerning the species from interested parties for 60 days after its publication in the Federal Register. Comments can be submitted at the Federal eRulemaking Portal at http://www.regulations.gov. (Follow the instructions on the web page for submitting comments). To deliver written comments by U.S. mail or hand-delivery, address to: Public Comments Processing, Attn: FWS-R9-IA-2009-0028; Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, Suite 222; Arlington, VA 22203. All comments except anonymous comments will be posted on http://www.regulations.gov. Personal identifying information, such as an address, telephone number, e-mail address or other personal identifying information will be posted along with your comments.
For more information, visit www.fws.gov.