U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announces proposal to grant red knot birds threatened status

Washington, DC (September 27, 2013)— The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced today its proposal to list red knots, small migratory shorebirds, as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. Defenders of Wildlife and its partners have submitted four requests to list red knots since 2005. Below is a statement from Defenders of Wildlife President and CEO Jamie Rappaport Clark:

“The proposal by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to grant threatened status to red knots has been a long time coming. It could mean the difference between red knot recovery and eventual extinction. Now that we’ve recognized the need to protect this amazing bird, the next step is to make their threatened status official.

“Red knots have been declining rapidly since the 1980s and face a number of challenges. Global warming is changing their Arctic nesting grounds. Commercial harvest has reduced the numbers of horseshoe crabs, the eggs of which are a critical red knot food source during migration. The continued loss of this species could impact ecosystems across the globe, making today’s announcement all the more important."


Media contact: Haley McKey, (202)-772-0247, hmckey@defenders.org

Defenders of Wildlife is dedicated to the protection of all native animals and plants in their natural communities. With more than 1 million members and activists, Defenders of Wildlife is a leading advocate for innovative solutions to safeguard our wildlife heritage for generations to come. For more information, visit www.defenders.org and follow us on Twitter @DefendersNews.

You may also be interested in:

Press Release
Scientists today released a report announcing that a decrease of at least 5,000 red knots was observed at key wintering grounds in Tierra del Fuego, Chile from the previous year. Scientists reported population counts of wintering knots in other locations declined as well. The estimated current total population for the migratory shorebird is now unlikely to be more than 25,000.
The latest articles about wildlife issues that may be of interest to those in the press.
Endangered Species Act
Wildlife is once again at a crossroads, and the need to speed up recovery efforts could not be more urgent.
In the Magazine
In a huge victory in July 2011, wildlife champions on both sides of the aisle in the House of Representatives struck down the so-called “extinction rider” by a vote of 224 to 202, with 37 House Republicans supporting the measure.