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Ranchers in Arizona and New Mexico Work to Protect Listed Species
Southwest Region, November 1, 2008
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The Malpai Borderlands Group, with ranchers from Cochise County, Arizona and Hildago County, New Mexico, has completed a habitat conservation plan (HCP) designed to improve grasslands and watersheds and allow participating ranchers to conduct specific ranch management activities while minimizing and offsetting potential adverse effects to 19 wildlife and plant species of concern – nine protected under the Endangered Species Act.  The San Bernardino NWR and the Malpai Borderlands Group have long been partners in the restoration of grasslands and the watershed shared by both organizations.  This HCP formalizes that partnership.  The Fish and Wildlife Service has issued a permit allowing Malpai and rancher-enrollees to take threatened and endangered species if it occurs incidentally to their operations.  This agreement between the two organizations will allow the ranchers to more efficiently conduct business on their ranches by not having to go through the permitting process for each individual habitat project they want to initiate on their property.  This will also work in the favor of the FWS.  The FWS will not have to perform consultations for each proposed project, allowing Service personnel to continue their own restoration work.

Contact Info: Christopher Lohrengel, 520-364-2104 x.106, chris_lohrengel@fws.gov



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