A lengthy and hard- fought battle over a lizard that can only be found in the shinery oak dunes of southeastern New Mexico and West Texas took a turn for the best Wednesday when federal officials decided against dubbing the reptile an endangered species.
An unprecedented number of voluntary conservation agreements now in place in New Mexico and Texas persuaded the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to withdraw its proposal to list the dunes sagebrush lizard as a species protected under the Endangered Species Act. Candidate Conservation Agreements and Candidate Conservation Agreements with Assurance, accords between industry and species, are tools created by the Service to establish cooperative conservation. These agreements, both voluntary, have been joined upon by the Bureau of Land Management and praised by politicians.
“The states of New Mexico and Texas have worked tirelessly with the Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management and scores of landowners and operators in the Permian Basin to conserve and protect habitat that supports the dunes sagebrush lizard and many other species,”
stated Service Director Dan Ashe in a joint press release from the Login to read more