Jaguar Recovery Moves Forward

Thanks to a new ruling, the federal government will have to launch a recovery plan for jaguars.©

A federal district court judge in Arizona last week struck down the federal government’s refusal to develop a species recovery plan for the critically endangered jaguar, which at one time roamed as far north as San Francisco’s Bay Area and east to the Appalachians. The lawsuit questioned a Bush administration contention that the jaguar’s formerly robust presence in the continental U.S. was "insignificant" in determining whether or not to help bring the species back from the brink of extinction.

According to the nonprofit Center for Biological Diversity, the successful plaintiff in the lawsuit, the fact that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service had declared it would not work to develop a recovery plan for an endangered domestic species was a first in the 35 years since the Endangered Species Act went into effect.

"The court today roundly rejected the Bush administration’s refusal to protect and restore jaguars to the United States," said the Center for Biological Diversity’s Michael Robinson. "We can now finally put the Bush era behind us and start the long, hard work of restoring the U.S. jaguar population."

Source: Center for Biological Diversity