April 12, 2023 | By:

Letter Endorsed by 100 Scientists Calls for Removal of the Director of the US Fish and Wildlife Service

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(Image: CC BY-NC 2.0, Credit: US FWS-Pacific Region)

On April 12, The Rewilding Institute’s Carnivore Conservation Biologist, Dave Parsons, sent a letter to President Biden and Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland calling for the removal of the current Director of the US Fish and Wildlife Service because she is serving in violation of federal law. The letter is endorsed by 100 scientists.

In 1973 Congress passed the Endangered Species Act, which requires decisions made pursuant to the Act to be based on the best available science. In 1974 Congress modernized, by law (16 U.S.C. 742b(b)), the current U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Recognizing the importance of science-based decision-making for conserving the nation’s wildlife, Congress established scientific qualifications for the Director of the new agency, “thereby assuring the appointment of a professionally trained public servant,” who was not subject to “political taint.” (H. Rep. 93-952)

Specific language was included in the federal statute requiring that “[n]o individual may be appointed as the Director unless he is, by reason of scientific education and experience, knowledgeable in the principles of fisheries and wildlife management.” The scientific education requirement is unambiguous and separate from the experience requirement. Since 1964, all confirmed Directors have possessed one or more academic degrees in the natural resource sciences – 3 BS, 9 MS, and 1 PhD.

The current Service Director has no “scientific education” credentials. She has a BA in philosophy from the University of Virginia and a law degree from the University of Montana.

Continue reading the letter here.

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David E Merchant Jr
1 year ago

They all should be replaced!

Charles Fox
1 year ago

Thank you for pursuing this flagrant violation of federal law. The Biden Administration should be trying to repair the rule of law that the Trump Administration trashed. Instead, they are making it worse. We must insist on the rule of law, not the rule of politically calculated whim.

Karen Holleschau
1 year ago

Agreed! How on Earth could such an unqualified individual get the position in the first place?

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