The federal government and extreme enviro-Marxist groups are threatening New Mexico cattle growers’ livelihoods over the protection of the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse, an endangered species.
The far-left Arizona-based Center for Biological Diversity claims the federal government isn’t adequately defending the mouse and its environment from cattle ranching and has told the government it intends to sue over the mouse’s protection this summer. The group’s co-founder Robin Silver claims the “fragile” species is not being adequately protected by the federal government.
Far-left groups in New Mexico, such as Defenders of Wildlife in Santa Fe agree. Bryan Bird, a program director of the group, said, “I would agree with the Center for Biological Diversity that the feds are just not doing enough to turn that situation around.”
“The two go together, the species and the habitat,” said Teresa Seamster, Northern New Mexico conservation chairwoman for the far-left dark money lobbying group, the Sierra Club. “It’s all connected.”
According to a statement from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to the Santa Fe New Mexican, “The Forest Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are committed to the protection of the New Mexico meadow jumping mouse. Using the best available science, we are working together to conserve [threatened and endangered] listed species and also provide for traditional forest uses.”
The tug of war between the federal government and the radical environmentalists is putting cattle ranchers in the crosshairs. “We’re the ones that are becoming extinct,” said Randell Major, president of the New Mexico Cattle Growers Association. “It’s getting harder and harder to make a living in New Mexico.”
The field mouse was listed as an endangered species seven years ago under the Barack H. Obama administration. The mouse lives near creeks and riverbeds and uses long grasses for food and “protection.”
The New Mexican report says that “Cattle, elk and deer trample the grasses and make them uninhabitable for the mice.”
Kelly and Spike Goss, cattle ranchers from Weed in the Lincoln National Forest, say they have fought the federal government for cattle grazing rights for years in multiple battles based on “endangered” species.
“They break you mentally, physically and financially,” Spike Gross said of the federal government. The family fought the federal government in the 1990s over logging rights and protection of the Mexican spotted owl. The enviro-Marxists and the federal government fighting over the protection of the mouse is the latest battle the Gross family is being involved in.
“They just keep taking and taking our most valuable water and forage,” Kelly Goss said.
20 years ago, the family grazed 550 heads of cattle on the property, but now they graze 410. The New Mexican reports, “The Gosses said they are willing to settle for a price, perhaps $12 million, with the government and give up.”
Kelly Gross said, “This is our culture, but at this point, we’re just spent.” The family says they would not pass on the headaches of fighting the federal government onto their next generation.
“They would have the environmentalists attacking the Forest Service from one side, and they would have the ranchers attacking them from the other side,” said Manuel Lucero, the head of a group of ranchers in the Jemez Springs area.
While enviro-Marxist groups battle with the feds over endangered species, such as mice, wolves, and owls, ranchers and farmers who must use these lands to provide for their families are being pushed smack-dab in the middle of this battle, which threatens to destroy their very existence.