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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:

In December 2014, we proposed to list these three coral species as endangered species and requested public comment. On October 7, 2015, we published a final rule listing these three foreign coral species as endangered 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:

In December 2014, we proposed to list the dusky sea snake as an endangered species and requested public comment. On October 7, 2015, we published a final rule listing the dusky sea snake as endangered 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 these nine shark 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 narrownose smoothhound, and spiny angel shark as threatened species and the daggernose shark, striped smoothhound,and Argentine angelshark as endangered species under the ESA. In July 2015, we proposed to list the sawback, smoothback, and common angelsharks as endangered species and requested public comment. On August 1, 2016, we published a final rule listing these three angelsharks as endangered under the ESA. On January 20, 2016, we determined that the Harrisson's dogfish shark does not warrant listing at this time. 

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