In-Depth: Sponsoring Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) reintroduced this bill from the 115th Congress to delist non-native species from the endangered species list, which would have the effect of removing an “onerous” and “counterproductive” permitting requirement for transferring such animals across state lines between breeders and zoos:
“How is this promoting conservation of the species? Removing unnecessary, outdated, redundant regulatory authority over interstate movement of non-native endangered species… will enhance conservation and that’s why we’re doing it.”
A zoo owner wrote to Rep. Gohmert in support of delisting non-native endangered species because of the regulatory burden created by the designation:
“Our zoo provides daily care and maintenance for more than 1,000 animals, representing 125+ species, many of which are endangered. We… have a long history of reproducing many of these endangered species. However, our access to genetic diversity for these animals is severely hampered by their listing in the ESA. Managed breeding programs are truly stifled by ESA listings as interstate movement is largely prohibited and the licenses to allow this, called CBW permits, are becoming difficult to renew.”
At the House Natural Resource Committee’s hearing on this bill in the previous Congress, the Acting Director Greg Sheehan of the Fish and Wildlife Service said that this bill “could create enforcement challenges related to wildlife trafficking,” but acknowledged the value of reducing duplicative regulations between the Endangered Species Act and international conventions.
In the 116th Congress, this bill doesn't have any cosponsors. In the previous Congress, it had 21 cosponsors in the House, including 20 Republicans and one Democrat.
Summary by Eric Revell(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / WoodenDinosaur)