Monday, November 14, 2011

Hit with the ugly stick

If you are going to attack endangered species it is wise to choose one of the less charismatic ones. Rep. Joe Baca of San Bernardino County has chosen well with the Delhi sands flower loving fly.

Here is the summary of House Resolution 1042 which is currently in committee. What do you think?

Amends the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA) to treat a limited listed species as extinct for purposes of this Act upon the expiration of the 15-year period beginning on the date it is determined by the Secretary of the Interior to be an endangered species, unless the Secretary publishes a finding that: (1) there has been a substantial increase in the population of the species during that period; or (2) the continued listing of the species does not impose any economic hardship on communities located in the range of the species. 

Defines "limited listed species" as any species that is listed as an endangered species for which it is not reasonably possible to determine whether the species has been extirpated from the range of the species that existed on the date the species was listed because not all individuals of the species were identified at the time of such listing.

For the back story on this fly see this article in the San Bernadino County Press enterprise Newspaper with the fabulous title: Colton: City moving on two fronts to battle fly.

At stake is the city's long-sought plan to establish a Superblock development of restaurants and stores along the west side of Pepper Avenue across from Arrowhead Regional Medical Center. Those plans have been stalled by restrictions imposed since the fly, which depends on the area's sandy soil, was placed on the federal endangered list in 1993.  

The fly is linked to the dunes created by centuries of Santa Ana winds scooping sand from the mountains and depositing it in the valleys below.
Development has paved over much of the dunes, leaving only 1,200 acres scattered across Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

"This community can't afford to sit and watch that pile of sand" remain undeveloped, Councilman Vincent Yzaguirre said.

For lots more fly information you can read the 5-year status review of the Delhi Sands flower-loving fly from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

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