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Federal judge denies request for bald eagle protection

Posted: Wednesday, Jan 25th, 2012

The San Carlos Apache Tribe and others suffered a set back in their “bald eagle” lawsuit when a U.S. District Court Judge in Phoenix came out denying their request for temporary protection of the bald eagles.  

The case involves a federal lawsuit filed last year by the San Carlos Apaches, the Pima-Maricopa Indian Community along with the Maricopa Audubon Society and Center for Biological Diversity against the U.S. Department of Interior, its Secretary Kenneth Salazar and the U.S. Fish Wildlife Department along with its Director Daniel Ashe.

Federal judge, David Campbell,  issued an order earlier that the Fish and Wildlife Service must produce a new review about the bald eagles by this April.

In the meantime, San Carlos Apache Tribal leaders and the three other groups had requested on Sept. 2 of last year   that the judge to  throw out the rule removing the bald eagle from the federal list of endangered species, pending a final listing.

In a 14-page order  signed Jan. 11 by Judge  Campbell, he said that although the San Carlos Apaches and other “plaintiffs have noted a number of possible harms from development projets, water use, and energy projects, the plaintiffs have not shown that the eagle is likely to suffer irreparable harm from any of these sources absent ESA protections during the remand period. 

Because the Court finds an insufficient showing of likely irreparable harm, the Court need not address the other factors required for an injunction.”

Therefore, Judge Campbell said

1.   The  request by the San Carlos Apaches and others to vacate the Fish and Wildlife Service’s September 2, 2011 rule removing the Bald Eagle from the federal list of endangered species is denied.

2.  Also denied is a request by the plaintiffs for the U.S. District Court to vacate the Fish and Wildlife Service’s finding in the 2007 delisting rule that the desert ( bald ) eagles are not significant.”

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