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E-M:/ Endangered Species Hearing in Lansing Tomorrow

Enviro-Mich message from anne.woiwode@sfsierra.sierraclub.org


Just a reminder that the state's Threatened and Endangered Species List will
be up for hearings both tomorrow (April 22 - Lansing) and next week (April 27-
Roscommon).  Written comments may be submitted until MAY 15 to MDNR Wildlife
Division, PO Box 30444, Lansing, MI  48909-7944.

Sierra Club will be submitting comments that raise at least the following

     - While the "extirpated species" on the list are not required under the
law, the proposal to eliminate entirely from the list extirpated mammals
(including the woodland caribou, and for you UofM fans, the wolverine) raises
grave concerns. The message appears to be that despite successful
reintroduction of previously extirpated mammals, including the gray wolf, the
moose, the elk, the pine marten, the fisher, etc., the DNR is deciding that
the species to be eliminated from the list at this time do not warrant ever
having their habitat restored in order to allow the restoration of the native
species to Michigan.  While there is question about whether wolverine is a
native species (sorry maize and blue) there is no question that woodland
caribou is native, and is found not far from Michigan's borders today (in some
parks in Ontario). This appears to be a decision to no longer TRY to bring
back the full range of native species to Michigan.

     - Some species that were recommended by the Committees convened by the
DNR to make recommendations for what should be added to the list and what
should be eliminated, were not included by the DNR in the list that went out
for public review and comment.  In particular, the northern goshawk and the
red crossbill, both were recommended by the Committee but disappeared from the
list published by DNR for comment.  Despite efforts to determine from the
relevant DNR officials what information was used by DNR staff to ignore or
override the input of scientists convened by DNR to prepared the proposed
lists, Sierra Club has been unable to get any answers as to why the lists were
changed.  We will be strongly recommending that ALL species recommended for
listing by the Committees be included in the final list unless the agency can
provide compelling rationale for not including those species.

We urge concerned environmentalists to make their views known.  Unfortunately,
the list is provided with no rationale for the changes, so it is difficult for
the average person to assess its accuracy.  In addition, the Sierra Club
continues to be quite concerned that the list update is coming seven years
after the last update, despite clear legislative language in Michigan's
statute requiring updates to be conducted every two years. 

More about the proposed rules can be found on the DNR's webpages.

for information contact Sierra Club

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