Office of Law Enforcement - San Diego, California
Since 2000, almost 60% of the Endangered Species Act take cases investigated by San Diego Special Agents were in Riverside and San Bernardino counties, home to 56 listed species. These counties include critical habitat and defined Habitat Conservation Plans (HCPs) for endangered species such as the Peninsular Big Horn Sheep, San Bernardino Kangaroo Rat, Stephen’s Kangaroo Rat, California Gnatcatcher, Southwestern Willow Flycatcher, Least Bell's Vireo, Desert Tortoise, California Red-Legged Frog, Southwestern Arroyo Toad, and many other endangered and threatened plants.
San Diego Special Agents regularly investigate international bird smuggling. San Diego Special Agents respond to law enforcement requests generated in Riverside, San Bernardino, and Los Angeles counties. These large counties include environmentally sensitive areas, and federal and state protected lands such as Joshua Tree National Park, Mojave National Preserve, the Coachella Valley Fringe-toed Lizard Preserve and portions of the Salton Sea State Recreation Area.
The farmlands in the Coachella Valley (Imperial County), Sonny Bono Salton Sea National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), and the state Wister Wildlife Hunting area provide a stopover and wintering area for birds in the Pacific Flyway. The Salton Sea NWR provides habitat to over 375 bird species. In addition, endangered and sensitive species such as the Southern Bald Eagle, Peregrine Falcon, Yuma Clapper Rail, Fulvous Whistling-Duck, and White-faced Ibis, have been observed on the refuge. There are approximately thirty private waterfowl hunting clubs located in Imperial County, CA. There is heavy dove and waterfowl hunting pressure in this area due to the population growth in southern California and diminishing habitat for recreational hunting.
US Fish and Wildlife Service
Last updated: March 23, 2011