Landowner Losing $36 Million Because the Government Wants to Protect…Frogs

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Top Tier Gear USA

gopher_frog

Cute little fella, isn’t he?

That’s a Dusky Gopher Frog. In 2012, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature listed the species as one of the top 100 most endangered in the world. Also known as the Mississippi gopher frog, the amphibian was historically found across parts of southwest Alabama, southern Mississippi and southeast Louisiana.

Currently, the entire population of these frogs is estimated to be around 250, and they live in only three ponds, all in south Mississippi: Glen’s Pond, Mike’s Pond and McCoy’s Pond.

The government wants to protect the species – and is willing (and able) to prevent landowners from developing land that might be hospitable to the frogs.

Edward Poitevent owns land north of Lake Pontchartrain in Louisiana. He wants to build offices and homes on the land, and could provide safe high-ground housing to people who would like to move away from areas that were flooded during Hurricane Katrina.

He can’t move forward with his development plans, though, because the government decided 1,500 acres of his property should become a preservation area for the frogs.

None of the frogs currently live on Poitevant’s land – they all live in Mississippi. In an interview, Poitevent told John Stossel that the Fish and Wildlife Service certified that the frog has not been seen in the state of Louisiana since 1967. Pointevant’s land currently has no ponds or the longleaf pine tree the species needs to survive.

The species hasn’t been seen in the state in over 50 years, but that isn’t stopping the government from making Poitevent’s privately owned land a critical habitat for the creatures. The land has been in his family for generations; Poitevent’s great grandfather started a lumber company after the Civil War and the property remains an actively managed tree farm.

At a hearing in 2012, several members of the Mississippi Tea Party spoke out against the government’s plan for Poitevent’s land. They called the Endangered Species Act unconstitutional, accused the government of taking people’s property without proper justification and expressed outrage about the amount of taxpayer money being spent to save a frog.

When Stossel contacted Fish and Wildlife Service officials for information, they were “not available” to talk with him. He notes that they posted a video on YouTube that says they work “with” landowners: “The Service has many voluntary partnership-based programs that can provide technical and financial assistance to manage species.”

Fantastic – but the government’s handbook on how to work with them is a whopping 315 pages long and is riddled with legalese.

Stossel also notes that landowners, in response to the schemes of environmentalists, tell each other, “If you find an endangered species, shoot, shovel and shut up!” He points out that the suggestion is mostly a joke, but it does happen and is an example of how government regulations can backfire.

“The Endangered Species Act was another noble idea. We all want to save polar bears. But now the bureaucrats make it almost impossible for some people to improve their own property. Industry and technology, not regulations, are humanity’s greatest contribution to the environment. Leave people their freedom, and they come up with new, smarter, more efficient and thus cleaner ways of doing things. Stifling that process with regulation isn’t ‘progressive,'” said Stossel.

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Contributed by Lily Dane of The Daily Sheeple.

Lily Dane is a staff writer for The Daily Sheeple. Her goal is to help people to “Wake the Flock Up!”

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  • bumblebee8

    Just because some cannot find value to the diversity in nature does not mean that they are not important. Just as we have been seeing with the bee colony collapse and its implications, frogs as well are sentinels for a healthy environment. They are also an important food source for many other species who would otherwise see themselves decrease in population. When frogs begin to show signs of deformity, population decreases, tumors, etc you can bet your bottom dollar something in the environment is not healthy. Money is not everything when people become sick because we could not see that something is becoming toxic.

    • So deny the benefits of private ownership in order to keep frogs as a “canary in the coal mine” Jesus!

    • roberta4343

      this is not the point go read the article again, if you take private property give fair compensation to the loss of that right, I am for saving crittors, but I am for paying for it too and not by stealing someones property rights. if you want something do not steal to get it. pay for it out of your own pockets.enviromentalists are paid taxpayer dollars with voluntary donations to petition the gov using lawsuits to protect animals or trees and then force the gov to use taxpayer funds again to do so (stealing someones private property rights whatever they are is the same as taxes) let these enviromentalists use their own money gained by voluntary contributions and fund raisers too and buy those rights dont use power of the gov to steal from people twice.

  • crazy2medic

    This is like the same crap they did to the west Texas ranchers that were clear cutting cedars to make pasture land, some college environmental wackos decided to stop them to save the golden cheek warbler, the ranchers promptly told them to stay off their land, what they failed to understand is cedars aren’t native to Texas, the birds obviously nested in something else prior to the arrival of the invasive cedars, and no doubt that the birds would have gone back to the trees they nested in before, this guy is losing use of his own land for a frog that hasn’t been seen in his state in over forty years! That is theft of private property!

    • laura m.

      Land grabs in Fla for decades. Raw land declared off limits to those who owned it in various areas, land that was passed down or bought undeveloped with intentions to build a house, then later gov declared a wet land (notified owner) and paid little compensation to owner. Some counties charge a $5000. environmental impact fee to develop raw land not in a wetland area. Fla is turning into another Calif. w/ overpopulation and more laws.

  • Josh2

    Shale oil under the land. Gov’t has been grabbing all lands with oil and silver and gold under it. Or any they think might have oil.

  • Dadwasright

    If you give the government power they will screw you with it . Learn from that .None of the frogs currently live on Poitevant’s land