On September 23, Defenders of Wildlife and Audubon Kansas filed a lawsuit in federal court in Washington, D.C., against the EPA for its decision to register pesticides that kill prairie dogs. The pesticides at issue are chlorophacinone and diphacinone, found in the products Rozol and Kaput-D. The lawsuit alleges that by registering the use of these pesticides, the EPA is violating several federal laws, including the Endangered Species Act. The full complaint can be found here. The suit also alleges that the EPA failed to heed warnings from the Fish and Wildlife Service, which recommended that registrations of the chemicals be disapproved or rescinded due to their known and potential impacts to wildlife.
According to one article, the FWS said the use of the chemicals could damage ferret recovery efforts and impact other federally protected species, and that EPA should consult with FWS over their use “because the range of the black-tailed prairie dog overlaps with the black-footed ferret, one of the most critically endangered mammals in the United States.” The black-footed ferret relies on the prairie dogs as one of their major food sources. The FWS also expressed concerns that the use of these chemicals might lead to potential mortality of migratory raptors.
In response, EPA published notice in the Federal Register yesterday, Oct. 7, which can be found here. EPA is requesting public comments on a June 5, 2009 petition from World Wildlife Fund requesting that the EPA suspend registration of Rozol, which had been approved in May. EPA will accept public comments until November 6, 2009.
Filed under: animal law, environmental law, Uncategorized Tagged: | animal ethics, animal law, animal welfare, endangered species, Endangered Species Act, EPA, Fish and Wildlife Service, Prairie Dogs, World Wildlife Fund