Salamanders under fire: Burning forests among threats as feds contemplate endangered status
Well, we’ve been discussing a woodpecker who likes fires and specifically post-fire habitat.
In this story we find an animal that apparently doesn’t like them so much and appears to be also rare. I wonder how a pattern of burning for woodpecker habitat in the Sierra would affect their local salamanders?
Here’s the link, and below is an excerpt.
One of the chief threats facing the lung-less amphibian is the combination of an overgrown forest and the likelihood of severe wildfire, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
While the salamander has evolved over centuries with low-intensity fire, the waves of fast-moving, intense fires that have charred tens of millions of acres in the West over the last decade is a problem.
Biologists say that between 1995 and 2010, severe fires have burned more than one-third of known salamander habitat on national forest lands.
In 2011, the Las Conchas Fire burned nearly 18,000 acres of salamander habitat.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service points to fire restoration, logging, grazing, roads, trails and recreation as other threats to the salamander.
Aside from the proposed listing, the agency is suggesting setting aside more than 140 square miles in three New Mexico counties as critical habitat for the salamander.
The agency will make a final decision on the salamander after a 60-day comment period.
Environmentalists have been pushing for salamander protections for more than two decades.
Hmm. I hope if they figure it’s hard to stop fires, they won’t shut instead stop “fire restoration,” logging, grazing, roads, trails and recreation instead…