Description: Lawsuit to compel the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to make a final determination on the proposed listing of the eastern black rail.
Center for Biological Diversity v. Bernhardt
Filing Date Type File Action Taken Summary 03/19/2020 Complaint Download Complaint filed. Lawsuit Sought Final Listing Determination on Marsh Bird Threatened by Sea Level Rise. Two organizations filed a lawsuit to compel the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to make a final determination on the proposed listing of the eastern black rail, a “a small, elusive marsh bird with speckled black plumage, a rufous nape, and scarlet eyes” found in the eastern United States, Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean. The plaintiffs alleged that the bird “stands on the brink of extinction” due to the loss, degradation, and fragmentation of its habitat but also due to increasing threats from sea level rise, which affects water depth, a “key habitat component” for the rail, which selects for its habitat “high ground areas of coastal marshes with shallow water (less than 6 centimeters) and infrequent tidal inundation or flooding.”