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Petition to List 81 Marine Species under the ESA

Background

On July 15, 2013, we received a petition from WildEarth Guardians [pdf] to list 81 species as threatened or endangered and designate critical habitat under the Endangered Species Act.

The 81 petitioned species includes

We will respond to the petition with 90-day findings and, if warranted, 12-month findings in separate Federal Register notices organized by taxa of animals in the petition. We will post information on each finding and associated materials below as they become available.

23 Corals

We published a 90-day finding on the portion of the petition related to 23 coral species on October 25, 2013.

The finding determined that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 20 species:

We found that the petition presented substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 3 species, and completed comprehensive status reviews for these species:

Based on the best scientific and commercial data available, and after taking into account efforts being made to protect the species, we are proposing to list these three coral species as endangered species under the ESA. 

NOTE: Information on the 2009 petition to list 83 corals under the ESA is also available on our website.



 

3 Hagfishes

We published a 90-day finding on the portion of the petition related to 3 hagfish species on November 6, 2013.

The finding determined that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for the 3 species:

 



 

3 Sea Snakes

We published a 90-day finding on the portion of the petition related to 3 sea snake species on November 6, 2013.

The finding determined that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 2 species:

We found that the petition presented substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 1 species, the dusky sea snake, and completed a comprehensive status review for this species:

Based on the best scientific and commercial data available, and after taking into account efforts being made to protect the species, we are proposing to list the dusky sea snake as an endangered species under the ESA. 



 

22 Sharks

We published a 90-day finding on the portion of the petition related to 19 species and 3 subpopulations of sharks on November 19, 2013.

The finding determined that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 10 species and 3 subpopulations:

We found that the petition presented substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 9 species:

We have completed comprehensive status reviews for Harrisson's dogfish (Centrophorus harrissoni), the Sawback angelshark (Squatina aculeata), Smoothback angelshark (Squatina oculata), and the Common angel shark (Squatina squatina). Based on the best scientific and commercial data available, and after taking into account efforts being made to protect the species, we are proposing to list Harrisson's dogfish as a threatened species and the sawback, smoothback, and common angelsharks as endangered species under the ESA. 

The five remaining shark species are considered candidate species. Status reviews will be initiated for these eight species. 



 

5 Marine Mammals

We published a 90-day finding on the portion of the petition related to 5 marine mammals on February 21, 2014.

The finding determined that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 1 species:

We found that the petition presented substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 1 species and 3 subpopulations:

Based on the best scientific and commercial data available, we have determined that the the Eastern Taiwan Strait population of Indo-Pacific humpback dolphin, the Baltic Sea population of harbor porpoise, and the Fiordland subpopulation of common bottlenose dolphin are not  distinct population segments and therefore do not warrant listing.

The one remaining entity, Hector's dolphin, is considered a candidate species. A status review will be initiated for this species.

10 Skates & Rays

We published a 90-day finding on the portion of the petition related to 10 species of skates and rays on February 24, 2014.

The finding determined that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 5 species:

We found that the petition presented substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 5 species:

Based on the best scientific and commercial data available, and after taking into account efforts being made to protect the species, we have determined that the undulate ray (Raja undulata) does not warrant listing at this time.

The four remaining skate and ray species are considered candidate species. Status reviews will be initiated for these species. 

 

15 Bony Fishes

We published a 90-day finding on the portion of the petition related to 10 bony fishes on February 24, 2014.

The finding determined that the petition does not present substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 10 species:

We found that the petition presented substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action may be warranted for 5 species:

We completed comprehensive status reviews for the Banggai cardinalfish (Pteropogon kauderni), the coelacanth (Latimeria chalumnae), and the greenback parrotfish (Scarus trispinosus). Based on the best scientific and commercial data available, and after taking into account efforts being made to protect the species, we are proposing to list the Banggai cardinalfish and the Tanzanian DPS of African coelacanth as threatened species under the ESA, and have determined that the greenback parrotfish does not warrant listing at this time. 

The two remaining species are considered candidate species. Status reviews will be initiated for these bony fishes. 

Updated: July 14, 2015