The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (“Service”) recently published a positive 90-day finding on a petition to list the Lesser Prairie-Chicken (Tympanuchus pallidicinctus) and three distinct population segments as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”). The petition was filed by WildEarth Guardians, the Center for Biological Diversity, and Defenders of Wildlife on September 8, 2016. The Service will initiate a status review for the Lesser Prairie-Chicken, followed by a determination regarding whether listing is warranted.
The listing petition was submitted on the heels of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas’s decision to vacate the Service’s final rule listing the Lesser Prairie-Chicken as a threatened species under the ESA.