Delisting the Eastern North Pacific Gray Whale from the ESA
The Service is amending the List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants (List) by revising the entry for the gray whale (Eschrichtius robustus) to remove the eastern North Pacific (California) population from the List while retaining the western North Pacific (Korean) population as endangered. In addition, the NMFS is amending its list of endangered species under NMFS jurisdiction. These actions correspond to a determination by NMFS, and concurrence by the Service, that the eastern North Pacific population of the gray whale should be removed from the List. The eastern North Pacific population has recovered to near its estimated original population size and is neither in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range, nor likely to again become endangered within the foreseeable future throughout all or a significant portion of its range. The Service and NMFS believe that the western North Pacific gray whale population, which is geographically isolated from the eastern population, has not recovered and should remain listed as endangered.