ʻIo No Longer Considered Endangered or Threatened
The ʻio or Hawaiian hawk will be removed from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife on Feb. 3, 2020.
On Thursday, the US Fish and Wildlife Service published the final rule to remove the ‘io, which was initially listed in 1967. Since then, improved monitoring, partner-led landscape-level conservation efforts and the species’ demonstrated resilience now indicate it no longer meets the definition of threatened or endangered.
“It is gratifying to say this species, listed more than 50 years ago, has a population secure enough to remove it from the list of threatened and endangered species” said Robyn Thorson, Regional Director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Columbia Pacific Northwest & Pacific Island Regions.
The delisting is based on studies showing range-wide population estimates have been stable for more than 30 years. The ʻio is nesting and foraging successfully in both native and altered habitats and has use of large areas of managed habitat. Based on the Service’s analysis, the ʻio is no longer at risk of extinction, now or in the foreseeable future.
The Service published a proposed rule to delist ʻio and post-delisting monitoring plan for public review and comment multiple times, most recently for 30 days on Oct. 30, 2018. The Service reviewed and fully considered all comments received during all the comment periods from the peer reviewers, state and federal agencies and public on the proposed delisting rule.
The Service also prepared a final post-delisting monitoring plan for the ʻio and its habitat designed to help ensure it remains secure from the risk of extinction after removal from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife. The finalization of the delisting of the ʻio will not affect the protection provided to the species by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act or Hawaiʻi state law.
The final rule, and the supporting documents, will publish in the Federal Register and the rule will take effect 30 days after publication. More information can be found here: www.fws.gov/pacificislands