New lawsuit aims to protect endangered plant from cattle grazing

Cattle grazing at the site of Tiehm's Buckwheat
Cattle grazing at the site of Tiehm's Buckwheat(The Center for Biological Diversity)
Published: Jan. 9, 2023 at 11:55 AM PST
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - A new lawsuit filed by the Center for Biological Diversity against the Bureau of Land Management aims to protect Tiehm’s Buckwheat from cattle grazing.

They are seeking to remove cattle from the buckwheat’s habitat.

“Tiehm’s buckwheat is one of North America’s most endangered plants, but federal officials are letting the livestock industry run roughshod over its fragile habitat,” said Patrick Donnelly, the Center’s Great Basin director.

“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recognized cattle grazing as a threat to the buckwheat’s existence, but the Bureau of Land Management has done nothing to protect these wildflowers,” he continued.

The suit began when seven cows were discovered grazing in the plant’s habitat last week, destroying individual plants and degrading the overall habitat, the center says.

Last year, BLM had said the cattle had been removed from the site.

“Each one of these plants is precious and essential for the recovery of this endangered species,” said Donnelly. “It’s totally unacceptable that the BLM is letting cows destroy this wildflower’s protected critical habitat while greenlighting a lithium mine that could wipe out the whole species. We’re going to court to hold this agency accountable for protecting each and every buckwheat.”