Critical Habitat 2002-2005
Upper Park Creek. Photo by Wade Fredenberg, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
November 29, 2002
The Service published in the Federal Register a notice of document availability for review and comment for the Draft Recovery Plan for the three of the five Distinct Population Segments of Bull Trout (Klamath River, Columbia River and Saint Mary-Belly River populations) (67 FR 71439).
November 29, 2002
The Service published in the Federal Register a proposed rule for the designation of critical habitat for the Klamath River and Columbia River distinct population segments of bull trout and notice of availability of the draft recovery plan (67 FR 71235) for those populations.
June 25, 2004
The Service published in the Federal Register a proposed rule for the designation of critical habitat for the Jarbidge River, Coastal-Puget Sound and Saint Mary-Belly River populations of bull trout (69 FR 35768).
July 1, 2004
The Service published in the Federal Register a notice of document availability for review and comment for the draft Recovery Plan for the Coastal-Puget Sound (69 FR 39950) and Jarbidge (69 FR 39951) distinct population segments of bull trout.
October 6, 2004
The Service published a final rule in the Federal Register designation of critical habitat for the Klamath River and Columbia River populations of bull trout (69 FR 59995).
December 14, 2004
Alliance for the Wild Rockies et al filed a complaint challenging the adequacy of the final critical habitat designation for the Klamath River and Columbia River bull trout populations. Our motion for partial voluntary remand was subsequently granted by the court with a final rule due by September 15, 2005.
In 2005, the Service designated approximately 3,828 miles of streams and 143,218 acres of lakes in Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington as critical habitat for the bull trout. Approximately 985 miles of shoreline paralleling marine habitat in Washington also was designated. No critical habitat was designated in the Jarbidge River basin. This was significantly less than the amount of critical habitat the Service had proposed in 2002 and 2004.
January 5, 2006
A lawsuit was filed by the Alliance for the Wild Rockies and Friends of the Wild Swan, alleging the Service failed to designate adequate critical habitat, failed to rely on the best commercial and scientific data available, failed to consider the relevant factors that led to listing, and failed to properly assess the economic benefits and costs of the critical habitat designation and for an inadequate analysis and unlawful use of exclusions.
March 23, 2009
The Service notified the U.S. District Court of Oregon that the agency would seek a remand of the 2005 final critical habitat rule based on the findings of an Investigative Report by the Department of the Interior Inspector General. The report found that a former Department of the Interior political appointee had extensively interfered with the final 2005 designation by directing large areas to be excluded from what had been proposed and by not allowing the inclusion of any areas unless there was absolute certainty that bull trout were present.
July 1, 2009
The court granted the Service’s request for a voluntary remand of the 2005 rule and directed the agency to complete a proposed revision by December 31, 2009, with a final designation due by September 30, 2010.
For more information including biology, status, and other related documents please go to
Recovery Units with Critical Habitat for Bull Trout (Final 2005 Rule)
Proposed Critical Habitat Rule 2004
- Jarbidge, St Mary-Belly, Coastal Puget Sound
Fact Sheets (Developed in 2002 for the proposed Critical Habitat process)