WILDLIFE in the WEST
Threatened and endangered species in the West cover the gamut. They are bighorn sheep and wolves. They are sage-grouse and salmon. They are pygmy rabbits and spotted frogs.
Our wildlife cases wield the Endangered Species Act, the National Environmental Policy Act and others to halt habitat destruction – unchecked grazing, industrial development, mining exploration, obsolete dams – wildlife in the West face these and many other threats daily.
As climate change and human activities cause the loss and fragmentation of habitats, our work becomes increasingly vital. We strive to protect and boost diminishing wildlife populations – from the mighty bighorn to the fragile frog.
Case: Dr. Steve Herman & WWP v. WDFW, No. 08-2-00276-1, Thurston County Sup. Ct
Three rounds of state court litigation challenging Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife’s agreement with ranchers to open state wildlife refuges to livestock grazing, various grazing leases given by WDFW on state wildlife refuges, and an EIS which opened up the Whiskey Dick Wildlife Area to grazing. These include areas vital to the last remaining sage-grouse populations…
Case: WWP v. US Forest Service, 07-cv-151-BLW (D. Idaho).
We brought this case in March 2007 to prevent the Forest Service from authorizing domestic sheep grazing in allotments on Payette and Nez Perce National Forests that pose a “high risk” of spreading diseases that kill Rocky Mountain bighorn sheep, which are native to the Hells Canyon and Salmon River region of central Idaho. Our…
Case: WWP v. Dyer, 04-cv-181-BLW (D. Idaho)
This long-standing litigation challenges BLM’s mismanagement of grazing in the Jarbidge Resource Area of southern Idaho, which has harmed sage-grouse, pygmy rabbits, and other sensitive sagebrush-obligate species and their habitats. Our first court victory, in 2004, held that BLM violated NEPA in approving “temporary” grazing increases sought by Simplot Co. and other major corporate ranchers….
Case: WWP v. U.S. Forest Service, case no. 08-1460-PJH
We teamed up with heavy-weight San Francisco law firm Keker & Van Nest in this litigation challenging hundreds of Forest Service grazing permit renewals on dozens of National Forests across the West. These permit renewals were done without any NEPA analysis, instead using “categorical exclusions” under an appropriations “rider” passed by Congress several years ago,…
Case: WWP v. US Fish and Wildlife Service, 06-cv-277-BLW (D. Idaho).
Greater sage-grouse are an “umbrella” species for the sagebrush ecosystem, that once covered 155 million acres of western US and Canada. Sage-grouse populations have declined steeply as sagebrush has been destroyed and fragmented by agricultural conversions, livestock grazing, energy development, weed invasions, and other impacts. This case challenged a January 2005 determination by U.S. Fish…