Feds reverse course on wolverines

August 12, 2014 by Matthew Brown

Federal wildlife officials are withdrawing proposed protections for the snow-loving wolverine—a reversal that highlights lingering uncertainties over what a warming climate means for some temperature-sensitive species.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe said that while is a reality, predictions about its localized impacts remain "ambiguous."

Ashe says that makes it impossible to determine whether wolverines are in danger of extinction.

The Associated Press obtained the decision ahead of Tuesday's formal announcement.

Wolverines, or "mountain devils," need deep snows to den. Federal officials last year said future temperature increases warranted increased protections for the animals.

As scientists grapple with limits on computer , the wolverine finding carries potential ramifications for other species— from Alaska's bearded seals to dozens of species of coral.

Explore further: US to reconsider species protection for wolverines

Related Stories

Study: Wolverines need refrigerators

July 12, 2012

Wolverines live in harsh conditions; they range over large areas of cold mountainous low-productivity habitat with persistent snow. The paper suggests wolverines take advantage of the crevices and boulders of the mountainous ...

US: Warming imperils wolverines (Update)

February 1, 2013

The tenacious wolverine, a snow-loving carnivore sometimes called the "mountain devil," is being added to the list of species threatened by climate change—a dubious distinction that puts it in the ranks of the polar bear ...

Utah wolverine sighting first documented in 30 years

July 3, 2014

State wildlife officials have captured images of a wolverine on the northern slope of the Uinta Mountains this year, the first documented sighting of the animal in Utah since a wolverine carcass was found in 1979.

Recommended for you

New lizard named after Sir David Attenborough

August 3, 2015

A research team led by Dr Martin Whiting from the Department of Biological Sciences recently discovered a beautifully coloured new species of flat lizard, which they have named Platysaurus attenboroughi, after Sir David Attenborough.

A look at living cells down to individual molecules

August 3, 2015

EPFL scientists have been able to produce footage of the evolution of living cells at a nanoscale resolution by combining atomic force microscopy and an a super resolution optical imaging system that follows molecules that ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.