As the Trump administration exited the White House, it gave one last “kick in the beak” to the Northern Spotted Owl, according to a Post Alley story.
The administration reduced the amount by nearly one-third of critical habitat protected for the owl in Washington, Oregon and California. The owl has been listed as a threatened species since 1990, and its numbers have been declining since.
Quoted in the story is UW School of Environmental and Forest Sciences emeritus professor Jerry Franklin, who has played an important part in finding ways to preserve old-growth ecosystems for a variety of reasons, including to aid the spotted owl:
“’I love the spotted owl,’ Franklin says. ‘It’s such a gentle creature.’ But, he says, ‘I’m more concerned about the whole array of prey’ species that the barred owl has put at risk. This has gotten a lot bigger than saving the spotted owl, he says. And whether or not the Trump Administration was willing to call it endangered, ‘they know it is.’ In fact, ‘we all know it is.'”