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Bats Suffering 95% Population Decline Denied Endangered Status in Pennsylvania

Game Commission bullied by Mining, Timber, Development Interests, and Politicians

by Dr Stan Kotala, Wildlife and Endangered Species Chair

Three bat species whose populations have declined by more than 95% over the past 6 years have been denied endangered species status in Pennsylvania.

After proposing listing as endangered the little brown bat, the northern long-eared bat, and the tri-colored bat in September, Pennsylvania Game Commission officials announced last month that the agency will not be moving forward to draft regulatory changes to place these three species of bats on the state’s endangered species list.

Pennsylvania Game Commission Executive Director Carl Roe noted that the agency received many public comments in support of listing the bats as an endangered species. “Through this process, we heard from various wildlife organizations and representatives from the timber, oil, coal and gas industries, as well as legislators. At the present time, it is clear that more discussion, research and coordination need to be done on White Nose Syndrome and the other outside factors that are impacting our bat populations, as well as how we can craft solutions that protect bats without threatening the industries that employ thousands of Pennsylvanians,” said Roe

As usual, industries, developers, and politicians claimed economic Armageddon if efforts were made to protect these three bat species from extinction. And again, sound science was trumped by political bullying.

The Pennsylvania Game Commission's public notice requesting comments regarding the proposed listing of these three bat species is at http://www.pabulletin.com/secure/data/vol42/42-32/1555.html

Other info on site: Moshannon Group’s letter supporting the listing of these three bat species