While we're on the subject of candidate species, let's consider the wolverine up in the northern Rockies and the Pacific Northwest. The day before the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said it won't list the Sonoran Desert Tortoise as endangered. the service gave a similar nod to the wolverine, which is down to  fewer than 300 in this country but still not in imminent enough peril to warrant listing, the service decided.

Here is an account of the situation by Reuters. Here's another version from the Bozeman, Montana Daily Chronicle. Apparently, climate change is a major threat to the wolverine but the dangers are long-term, according to the service. A third story from Scientific American reports that wolverines numbered 500 to 1,000 as recently as 2008 and suggests that trapping may have lowered the numbers.