News and Updates
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will review status of Canada lynx to prepare for recovery planning
January 15, 2015
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced today that the agency will review the status of the Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis), which is listed as threatened under the federal Endangered Species Act as a contiguous United States distinct population segment. The five-year status review will clarify the extent, magnitude, and nature of the threats to the lynx DPS so that recovery planning may target those specific threats.
Plan finalized for Canada lynx affected by state trapping programs
November 4, 2014
With measures in place to minimize and offset the effects to federally protected Canada lynx, the Service has permitted the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife for incidental captures of the threatened species associated with state-regulated trapping programs. Maine is the first state to have an incidental take plan for Canada lynx. The plan outlines measures to minimize take and injury, such as using certain trap sets, and to offset take by providing lynx habitat.
News release (web) (PDF)
Agencies release revised plan, assessment for protecting Canada lynx affected by Maine trapping program
Maine to manage at least 4,785 acres for Canada lynx
August 5, 2014
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is one step closer to making a decision on permitting Maine's state-regulated trapping programs for effects to the federally protected Canada lynx. The Service has released revised versions of Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife's incidental take plan and a corresponding draft environmental assessment of the plan for public review and comment through September 5, 2014.
The agencies previously released draft versions of these documents for public comment in November 2011, followed by three highly attended public information sessions. The Service received about 285 unique letters, 129 comment cards from public information sessions and 6,100 form letters commenting on issues from outreach and monitoring measures to lynx handling procedures and enforcement.
News release (PDF and web)
Proposal would help southern Maine landowners conserve rare rabbit
June 30, 2014
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife have drafted a 50-year agreement to restore New England cottontail habitat on private and state-owned lands in Androscoggin, Cumberland, Kennebec, Knox, Lincoln, Oxford, Sagadahoc, Waldo and York counties in Maine. Under the proposed agreement, MDIFW would work with interested landowners to restore and manage up to 12,000 acres of young forest habitat.
The agreement, called a candidate conservation agreement with assurances, helps landowners voluntarily manage lands for rare species by assuring they will not be subjected to additional land use restrictions if the species is protected under the Endangered Species Act in the future. The New England cottontail has been a candidate for protection under the federal ESA since 2006 and is listed as endangered by the state of Maine. The draft agreement and associated documents are available for review and comment at http://www.fws.gov/newengland/.
Questions and answers (PDF)
More on the New England cottontail