#1 Feds rile ranchers by fencing off water for cattle — to protect a jumping mouse! by algernonpj 13.05.2014 03:09

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Despite some inaccuracies about Bundy's situation, this story is about the latest inanity by the feds.

Feds rile ranchers by fencing off water for cattle — to protect a jumping mouse!
Forest Service says it’s mouse habitat
By Valerie Richardson
May 11, 2014

The Obama administration’s crackdown on Western land use has sparked a furor over the Forest Service’s decision to fence off a creek used by thirsty cattle in drought-stricken Otero County, New Mexico.

The Otero County Commission is scheduled to meet Monday to discuss whether to order the sheriff to open the gates against the wishes of Forest Service officials, who have argued that the fence is needed to protect the Agua Chiquita riparian area and habitat for the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse.

Otero County Sheriff Benny House said he worries that the increasingly tense situation could erupt into a Nevada-style melee between ranchers and federal agents.

“What’s going to happen here is that we could end up with a Bundy situation,” said Sheriff House, referring to Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy’s standoff with the Bureau of Land Management. “Hopefully, we can resolve it without it getting out of hand.”

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“The Forest Service is coming in and saying, ‘We’re in charge of the water and the water is part of the forest,’” said Sheriff House. “It’s a control issue, and they’re trying to push the rancher out. They’re using every excuse in the book. One area is a riparian area. One area is critical habitat. One area might be for endangered species.”

At a May 5 board meeting, Forest Supervisor Travis Moseley told the commissioners that Agriculture Department counsel assured him that the Forest Service’s actions in the Lincoln National Forest were on “sound legal footing.”

District ranger James Duran said the Forest Service is taking steps to protect habitat for the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse, which was proposed for listing as an endangered species in June 2013 after a 251-species settlement in 2011 between the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and WildEarth Guardians.

Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014.../#ixzz31Zid71rk

Who you might ask are The WildEarth Guardians ?;

Zitat
According to its 2012 annual report, the overall mission of WildEarth Guardians is to protect and restore wildlife, wild places, and wild rivers in the North American West.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WildEarth_Guardians


http://www.wildearthguardians.org/site/PageServer

Their revenue included nearly 1/2 million in government grant
http://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cf...mary&orgid=9974

As to the meadow jumping mouse:

Zitat
The meadow jumping mouse (Zapus hudsonius) is the most widely distributed mouse in the subfamily Zapodinae. It may be found from the Atlantic coast, to the Great Plains, as far north as the arctic tree lines in Canada and Alaska, and as far south as Georgia, Alabama, Arizona, and New Mexico.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meadow_jumping_mouse

#2 RE: Feds rile ranchers by fencing off water for cattle — to protect a jumping mouse! by Cincinnatus 13.05.2014 14:58

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A New Mexico county board on Monday instructed the local sheriff to open the Forest Service gates blocking thirsty cattle from reaching water, setting up a clash with federal agents over state water rights and endangered species.

The Otero County Commission voted 2-0, with one commissioner absent, to “immediately take steps to remove or open gates that are unlawfully denying citizens access to their private property rights.”

Commissioner Ronny Rardin said Monday he was uncomfortable with taking action “against people that are my friends,” apparently referring to local Forest Service rangers, but that he had an obligation as an elected commissioner to uphold the Constitution.

“That Constitution is in breach right now and it is our duty, it’s our civil duty — if we want to keep our nation free and keep our country as it was intended to be by our forefathers — to stand up and take this type of action,” said Mr. Rardin.

The tension comes as ranchers and others throughout the West cry foul over what they describe as the federal government’s tightening control of public lands. About 52 percent of Western land is owned by the federal government.

The Otero County situation has even drawn comparisons to the standoff last month at the Nevada ranch owned by Cliven Bundy. Unlike Mr. Bundy, who had refused for 21 years to pay his grazing fees to the federal government, the New Mexico ranchers have not broken any laws.

The New Mexico ranchers became alarmed this year when Forest Service officials refused to open gates allowing cattle to reach a creek in the Lincoln National Forest. Local rangers have said that they are trying to protect the riparian area, which is considered habitat for the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse.

The mouse is expected to be listed as an endangered species in June. The proposed listing, which would include as much as 193 miles of critical habitat in Arizona, Colorado and New Mexico, comes after a settlement with WildEarth Guardians in 2011.

Otero County Sheriff Benny House said that he plans to wait to enforce the order until after a meeting Friday called by acting U.S. Attorney Damon Martinez.

“We’re just doing our homework and finding out exactly what our options are between now and the meeting on Friday, and hopefully we can get something resolved on Friday,” said Mr. House. “I’ll give them that courtesy.”


http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014.../#ixzz31XGZ3ROJ (emphasis added)

Mr Obama tear down that wall...or we will. That's all the "courtesy" we should give these aholes.

#3 RE: Feds rile ranchers by fencing off water for cattle — to protect a jumping mouse! by algernonpj 13.05.2014 15:57

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@Cincinnatus

thanks for posting the update.

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