Tricolored Blackbirds Receive Emergency Protection Under the California Endangered Species Act
The emergency protections prevent the killing, harassing, or harming of tricolored blackbirds for the next 180 days, while the California Fish and Game Commission considers a petition to formally list the birds under the state’s Endangered Species Act. Tricolored blackbird populations have declined throughout the State with only 145,000 birds counted in 2014-the lowest ever recorded. Formal listing of this bird will primarily affect agricultural operations as tricolored blackbirds nest in large colonies located within irrigated pasture, silage fields, and other agricultural crops. “It’s critical that harvesting and plowing activities on private lands used for tricolor breeding are prohibited or delayed during the upcoming 2015 nesting season”, Jeff Miller from the Center for Biological Diversity.