09 February 2011 BREAKING: Pacific Walrus Denied Endangered Species Status Posted by: Caitlin Leutwiler | 6 comments | Share: The Obama administration yesterday announced it will not list the Pacific walrus under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The Fish and Wildlife Service has determined the species is “warranted but precluded,” a delay in listing allowed by the ESA if the agency feels that other imperiled species are a higher priority. This news comes at a bad time for the Arctic mammal. Climate change is causing sea ice in both the Bering and Chukchi Seas to disappear at an alarming rate, diminishing important Pacific walrus habitat and availability of prey and increasing the chances of deadly stampedes. And shrinking sea ice isn’t the only thing walruses have to worry about. Foreseeable harm to walrus populations also includes increased shipping, potential oil spills and ocean acidification, which will further reduce the walrus’ prey base of clams and other shellfish. Bob Irvin, senior vice president of conservation programs for Defenders said, “By melting Arctic sea ice on which Pacific walrus and other wildlife depend, climate change is stacking the deck against their ability to survive. As Pacific walrus habitat shrinks, it becomes harder to find food and the animals are forced to crowd together in fewer areas, increasing the risk of deadly stampedes. With all of these threats, the life of a Pacific walrus is pretty tough. Today’s decision just made it tougher, failing to provide the help Pacific walrus will need to survive the impacts of global climate change.” What Defenders Is Doing Defenders is co-sponsoring a Pacific walrus remote camera monitoring project, placing five cameras at a walrus haulout location. The goal of the project is to record haulout disturbances and what the causes are and how long they last. Read more about how Defenders is working to protect walruses and other wildlife from the Arctic meltdown. 6 Responses to “BREAKING: Pacific Walrus Denied Endangered Species Status” Soffi February 9th, 2011 Poor animal. Live them alone Elveleigh February 9th, 2011 Defenders by the time you have proved the devastation I just hope its not too late for the walrus’ Inma February 9th, 2011 This horrible news couldn’t have come in a worst moment,absolutely horrible and inconsiderate decision, really appalling autrey justice king February 9th, 2011 It just make’s me sick that mankind doesn’t care about the one’s that were here before us.God made them as well and we should care for them not take their habitat.Animal’s do nothing but try and survive and raise their young (just like us). Post Your Comment Click here to cancel reply. Name (required) Mail (required) (will not be published) You May also be interested in Wolf Weekly Wrap-Up Helicopter gunning kills 23 wolves in Idaho; Urge Secretary Jewell to abandon gray wolf delisting proposal — Call your representative by March 14; Washington wildlife agency urged to end support for abolishing federal wolf protections; The latest on Governor Otter’s wolf control board. Two Too Many Development Projects in the Ivanpah Valley While these projects most definitely directly impact a species that has been identified as threatened and is dependent on the habitat where they would be built, Silver State South and Stateline’s approval is most troubling for a bigger reason. You see, this isn’t just an issue for the Ivanpah Valley. Developers and agencies need to be conscious of how and where they plan energy projects all across the country. They need to look at renewable energy planning with a landscape-wide lens, understanding that building in the right places and making an effort to minimize environmental impacts from the start are essential. California’s Rim Fire: Opportunities Rise from the Ashes After California’s devastating Rim Fire, will officials take the opportunity to give nature a chance to fully recover?