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INHOFE PRAISES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE FOR RECLASSIFYING THE AMERICAN CROCODILE
March 20, 2007

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE             CONTACT: MARC MORANO 202-224-5762
March 20, 2007                                                              marc_morano@epw.senate.gov
                                                                                          MATT DEMPSEY 202-224-9797
                                                                                          matthew_dempsey@epw.senate.gov
 
INHOFE PRAISES FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE FOR RECLASSIFYING THE AMERICAN CROCODILE
 
“This Decision Provides Hope That Additional Species, Like The American Burying Beetle, That Have Recovered In Large Part Due To Private Recovery Efforts May Soon Be Removed From The Endangered Species List.”
 

WASHINGTON, DC – Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Environment and Public Works Committee, today applauded the decision by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) to reclassify the American crocodile (Crocodylus acutus) in Florida from “endangered” to “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The decision provides hope that additional species that have been recovered, such as the American Burying Beetle, may soon also be reclassified or de-listed by the FWS.

“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decision to downgrade the American crocodile from ‘endangered’ to ‘threatened’ is certainly good news,” Senator Inhofe said. “This Decision Provides Hope That Additional Species, Like The American Burying Beetle, That Have Recovered In Large Part Due To Private Recovery Efforts May Soon Be Removed From The Endangered Species List. ESA was never intended to permanently list species once they have recovered, and I am optimistic that Secretary Kempthorne and USFWS Director Dale Hall will continue to reevaluate all species on the Endangered Species list and reclassify or de-list as appropriate.”
 
In January, Senator Inhofe praised the decision by the US Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to conduct a status review of the American Burying Beetle. The review will assess the American Burying Beetle to determine whether its status has changed since the time of its listing and whether it should be de-listed or classified differently. The American Burying Beetle (ABB) was listed as an Endangered Species in 1989 based on museum and collector's data (not actual scientific study data). Since its listing, the ABB has been found in many areas and is much more widespread than originally thought.
 
As Chairman of EPW Committee, Senator Inhofe held several hearings that focused on the ABB issue, including one in 2003 and 2004. Additionally, the ABB was a featured topic of Senator Inhofe in all of the EPW hearings on the Endangered Species Act held in the 108th and 109th Congresses.
 
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