Center for Biological Diversity v. Zinke, No. 14-17513 (9th Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
The Ninth Circuit affirmed summary judgment for the FWS in an action challenging the FWS's determination that the Sonoran Desert Area bald eagle was not a distinct population segment eligible for listing under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), 16 U.S.C. 1533. The panel held that FWS reasonably concluded that, while the combination of unusual characteristics in a discrete population was sufficient to satisfy the persistence factor, those characteristics did not by themselves necessarily require a conclusion that the desert eagle population segment was ecologically or biologically significant for the bald eagle taxon as a whole; FWS reasonably concluded that if the desert eagle population segment were "extirpated," this would not create a significant gap in the range of the taxon; and FWS directly addressed climate change in its 2012 decision.