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Lauren McCauley – Bees in Peril as First Species Added to Endangered Species List

Marking a troubling development in the crisis of pollinator decline, the first species of bees were added to the Endangered Species List. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) announced the determined status on Friday for seven types of yellow-faced bees found in the Hawaiian islands. It comes after a multi-year effort by the invertebrate conservation organization The Xerces Society to gain federal recognition and protection …

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Marjorie Cohn – Numbers in Obama’s Drone Deaths Report Just Don’t Add Up

More than three years after President Barack Obama pledged to be transparent about the United States’ lethal drone program, his administration has finally come forward with an accounting of the numbers of civilian deaths that resulted from drone strikes between Jan. 20, 2009, and Dec. 31, 2015. But they only cover airstrikes “outside areas of active hostilities,” which encompasses Pakistan, …

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Dan Bacher – California Fish Species Plummet To Record Lows

Fish species ranging from endangered Delta Smelt to Striped Bass continued to plummet to record low population levels in 2015 in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, according to the annual fall survey report released on December 18by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW). Only 6 Delta Smelt, an endangered species that once numbered in the millions and was …

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Analysis: Republican Attacks on Endangered Species Up 600 Percent Per Year

WASHINGTON— Over the past five years, Republicans in Congress have launched 164 attacks on the Endangered Species Act — a 600 percent increase in the rate of annual attacks over the previous 15 years, according to a new analysis by the Center for Biological Diversity. The report, Politics of Extinction, also identifies five Republicans responsible for nearly a quarter of …

New Data: 2.7 Million Animals Killed by Rogue Federal Wildlife Program in 2014

New data from the highly secretive arm of the U.S. Agriculture Department known as Wildlife Services reveals it killed more than 2.7 million animals during fiscal year 2014, including wolves, coyotes, bears, mountain lions, beavers, foxes, eagles and other animals deemed pests by powerful agricultural, livestock and other special interests. Despite increasing calls for reform after the program killed more than 4 million …