Target: Sally Jewell, Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior
Goal: Applaud efforts to protect habitat for Yellow-billed Cuckoos
The United States Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed a plan that will protect the yellow-billed cuckoo from extinction. The yellow-billed cuckoo has been in need of protection since 1986, and was officially declared an endangered species in 2013. Today, the proposal is poised to protect more than half a million acres of streamside habitat, in nine states, including Arizona, California, and Colorado, to name a few, which is home to the greatest population of these beautiful songbirds.
The yellow-billed Cuckoo once thrived along nearly every water body in the western United States, but its population has steadily been depleted by dams, livestock grazing, water withdrawal, river channelization and other harmful factors. Today, the bird survives, in very small numbers, along portions of Sacramento’s Eel and Kern rivers, Colorado’s Gila and Verde rivers and the San Pedro rivers in Arizona.
The cuckoo, known as the ‘rain crow’ for its habit of singing before storms, is one of the few species that can eat spiny caterpillars, as well as noxious insects, which normally kill other birds, making them an essential part of our ecosystem.
Although the proposed plan isn’t set to be finalized until 2015, many conservation activists and wildlife protection advocates are rejoicing as the victory proves to be beneficial to the human population as well. With streamside habitats protected, healthy water quality for people in western regions increases exponentially. Michael Robinson, a conservation advocate at the Center for Biological Diversity, states of the victory “The cuckoo’s decline is representative of the poor job we’ve done caring for our waterways, so this proposal is a big step toward being better stewards of our rivers and streams.”
Sign the petition to thank Sally Jewell, Secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior, for her efforts in the fight to preserve the yellow-billed cuckoo’s habitat and safeguard healthy water quality.
Dear Sally Jewell,
It has come to my attention that the U.S. Department of the Interior has actively worked with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to protect the habitat of the endangered yellow-billed cuckoo. These resplendent birds have seen their population deplete exponentially due to environmental factors, industrialization and climate change. Your proposal to protect 546,335 acres of streamside habitat in nine western states deserves to be applauded. By protecting these waterways, you’ve also improved water quality for the people of the western United States and, for that, your efforts are greatly appreciated.
The yellow-billed cuckoo, as well as other suffering species, will no longer have to face extinction. Thank you for being such a vigilant activist and passionate conservationist.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: n88n88 via everystockphoto