Target: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Director Daniel Ashe Goal: List the desert massasauga rattlesnake as an endangered species so that its population may be protected The desert massasauga rattlesnake is a distinctive creature found in the grasslands of… Source: forcechange.com
GR: Rattlesnakes of the western U. S. tend to be shy, non-aggressive regulators of small mammal populations. Like gophersnakes that kill by squeezing, rattlesnakes are part of the complex equation that produces a balanced ecosystem. Removing them might disrupt the balance and lead to other losses. This petition will remind the Director of the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service that people are paying attention.
In 2010, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) proposed listing nine large constrictor snakes as injurious under the Lacey Act, which would significantly reduce the trade of these species as pets. However, in January 2012, only four of the nine species were listed. USFWS is still considering the remaining five species of snakes for listing and is soliciting public comments on the matter.
Large constrictor snakes have become established in parts of Florida and are consuming native wildlife, including endangered and threatened species. Scientists with the U.S. Geological Survey concluded that all nine species of these large constrictor snakes present a “high” or “medium” risk of becoming invasive.
The second edition of my “Arizona Wildlife Notebook” will be off to the printer (CreateSpace) as soon as I finish the cover. This edition has introductions and checklists for 12 groups of Arizona animal species: Amphibians, ants, bats, birds, butterflies and moths, dragonflies and damselflies, fish, grasshoppers, lizards, mammals, snakes, and turtles. Groups in bold type are new to the Notebook. The introduction to each group covers the group’s conservation issues and provides references for printed and online field guides. The checklist for each group includes scientific and common names and conservation status. I alphabetized each checklist by scientific name, and I included an index for all the common names. Continue reading →