Description: Lawsuit filed challenging the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's decision to forgo recovery planning for the Canada lynx in the contiguous United States.
Friends of the Wild Swan v. Haaland
Filing Date Type File Action Taken Summary 11/01/2021 Order Download Parties' stipulated settlement adopted and case dismissed. Fish and Wildlife Service Agreed to Prepare Recovery Plan for Canada Lynx. The federal district court for the District of Montana dismissed a case challenging the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s (FWS’s) decision to forgo recovery planning for the Canada lynx in the contiguous United States after the plaintiffs and the federal defendants agreed to a settlement pursuant to which the FWS will prepare a draft recovery plan by December 2023 and will finalize a final recovery plan within a year after publishing the draft plan. In their suit, the plaintiffs alleged that the December 2017 decision to forgo recovery planning based on the FWS’s determination that the lynx in the contiguous United States were “recovered” and no longer threatened arbitrary and capricious and not in accordance with law. They asserted that deeming a species to be “recovered” was not a valid reason to forgo recovery planning and also that the recovery finding was “premature” and conflicted with best available science, which the plaintiffs said revealed threats to lynx, including increasing threats from climate change. The plaintiffs also alleged that the FWS failed to evaluate whether the lynx were recovered and no longer threatened in a “significant portion” of the species’ range in the contiguous U.S. and that the FWS failed to properly identify and evaluate threats to the lynx within the “foreseeable future,” which the FWS identified as 2050 but which the plaintiffs alleged extends to at least 2100. 10/29/2021 Motion Download Joint motion for adoption of parties' stipulated settlement agreement filed. 09/24/2021 Motion for Summary Judgment Download Memorandum filed in support of plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment. 12/01/2020 Complaint Download Complaint filed.