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CCA lauds decision not to list blackbird

The California Cattlemen's Association is pleased that the state Fish and Game Commission decided not to list the tricolored blackbird as endangered or threatened -- a move farmers and ranchers say could be economically devastating.

SACRAMENTO — The California Cattlemen’s Association is applauding a state panel’s decision not to list the tricolored blackbird as endangered or threatened.

However, the state Fish and Game Commission has signaled it could reconsider the listing if asked to do so by the Department of Fish and Wildlife or an environmental group, the CCA cautioned.

“The tricolored blackbird will continue to be on the radar for the commission,” the cattlemen’s group told its members in a legislative bulletin.

CCA representatives were among many who argued against the listing during the commission’s Aug. 6 meeting in San Diego. Others complained that listing the bird would cause economic devastation for farmers and ranchers, according to the bulletin.

In addition, some farmers and ranchers said a listing could push farmers and ranchers to remove Himalayan blackberry bushes, an invasive plant species that provides habitat for the bird, the bulletin reported.

According to a University of California-Davis survey, populations of the tricolored blackbird have decreased sharply since 2011, but California’s historic drought may have contributed to the decline.



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