CDFW seeks public comment related to Townsend’s big-eared bat

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is seeking public comment on a proposal to list the Townsend’s big-eared bat as an endangered or threatened species.

Townsend’s big-eared bats (Corynorhinus townsendii) range throughout much of western North America, including most of California. They are active at night and roost in colonies or individually in caves, mines, large old trees, large undisturbed spaces in buildings and other structures with large quiet spaces. Disturbance and loss of large colony roosts sites during the maternity and hibernation seasons are considered primary factors that may negatively impact the species in California, although disease, climate change, pesticide use and other factors may also negatively affect populations.

In November 2012, the Center for Biological Diversity submitted a petition to the California Fish and Game Commission to formally list the Townsend’s big-eared bat as a threatened or endangered species. The commission published findings of its decision to advance the species to candidacy on Dec. 27, 2013, triggering a 12-month period during which CDFW will conduct a status review to inform the commission’s decision on whether to list the species.

As part of the status review process, CDFW is soliciting public comment regarding the species’ ecology, biology, life history, distribution, abundance, threats and habitat that may be essential for the species, and recommendations for management of the species. Comments, data and other information can be submitted in writing to: California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Nongame Wildlife Program, Attn: Scott Osborn, 1812 9th Street, Sacramento, CA 95811. Comments may also be submitted by email to: scott.osborn@wildlife.ca.gov.

All comments received by May 1, 2014, will be included in a CDFW report to the commission. Receipt of the report will be placed on the agenda for the next available meeting of the commission after delivery and the report will be made available to the public at that time. Following the receipt of the CDFW report, the commission will allow a 30-day public comment period prior to taking any action on CDFW’s recommendation.

CDFW’s petition evaluation report for Townsend’s big-eared bat is available at: www.dfg.ca.gov/wildlife/nongame/publications/.

photo caption:

Townsend’s big-eared bat

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