For Immediate Release, August 30, 2023

Contact: Emily Bishton, Arivaca Pollinator Pathway, 

Dynamic, 3-D Mural Unveiling Sunday in Arizona 

Mural Series Commemorates the 50th Anniversary of the Endangered Species Act

Arivaca, Ariz. – The Endangered Species Coalition, our member organizations, and the Arivaca Pollinator Pathway Project are pleased to announce the unveiling of a 3-dimensional, community mural featuring native endangered and threatened species in different settings. The mural unveiling and celebration is part of a series commemorating the 50th year of the Endangered Species Act. Festivities begin Sunday, September 3rd at 11:00 am and will run until 4:00 pm at the Arivaca Dancehall, 17271 W. 5th St. in Arivaca, Ariz.

This event will feature the dedication of our new mural, created by artist Paul ‘Nox’ Pablo, and complementing our Pollinator Pathway project by depicting images of local, native plants and animals. We’re honored that the celebratory event will include special guests from Tohono O’odham Nation and its Cultural Center and Museum, who will provide a presentation and receive returned local Tribal artifacts.  The event will be capped off with a performance by legendary Waila musicians Gertie and the T.O. Boys, who have entertained audiences and been cultural ambassadors for the Tohono O’odham Nation throughout the US for decades. 

About ESA AT 50 

In 2023, the 50th anniversary provides a unique, year-long opportunity to build support for the Endangered Species Act and imperiled species by celebrating conservation achievements, highlighting conservation needs, and generally reminding the public and decision-makers why plants, fish, and wildlife are beloved and vital to the heritage we share as Americans. Just as in 1973, an unprecedented coalition of agencies, organizations, and nonprofits are coming together to commemorate this conservation legacy. Find out more about the coalition, events and activities at 

About the Arivaca Pollinator Pathway Project

The Arivaca Pollinator Pathway is a volunteer-driven project to build public gardens in the small town of Arivaca to provide a linked pathway of habitat for Monarchs and other butterflies, bees, bats, and other pollinators.  In addition, to grow local knowledge and understanding about the importance of pollinators and how to provide good habitat for them, through free garden classes and experiential learning.

The project has also grown to include the creation of a beautiful new mural that depicts pollinators and other species that are endangered or threatened in the region of Southern Arizona that includes Arivaca and the Tohono O’odham Nation.  The 3-sided mural is surrounded by one of the Pollinator Pathway gardens, and its unique design takes viewers on a day and night journey through the natural habitat of this region.

The Pollinator Pathway Project is a collaboration between the Arivaca Dancehall, the Teen Advisory Board (TAB) of the Friends of the Arivaca Caviglia Library, and fiscal sponsor Arivaca Human Resource.

Find out more about the project’s events and activities.

Article republished with permission from the League of Conservation Voters.


The Endangered Species Act (ESA) is facing unprecedented attacks that threaten some of our nation’s most important species. At the same time, the climate crisis and irresponsible development are leading to catastrophic losses of plant and animal species. Some biologists estimate that 35% of animals and plants could become extinct in the wild by 2050 due to climate change alone. While working to curb our emissions and ensure a livable planet for every species on Earth, we must also ensure that those most at risk and their habitats are protected. This year, on the 50th anniversary of the ESA’s passage, it is more important than ever to uphold this foundational environmental law in the face of continued threats.

The ESA’s 50 Years of Success

President Nixon signed the ESA into law in 1973 with overwhelming bipartisan support. The ESA ensures that species in danger of extinction, as well as the ecosystems that support those species, benefit from comprehensive protections. Since its passage, the ESA has secured the survival of iconic species including our nation’s emblem, the bald eagle.

Indeed, the ESA has been credited with saving 99% of listed species from extinction, and this achievement is due to the essential collaboration between federal agencies and state, local, and tribal governments. Success stories include the survival of the Florida manatee, seven species of sea turtles, the Channel Island fox, and the gray wolf. Importantly, these species and their habitats are not separate from us. These creatures inhabit the same coasts, forests, bays, and grasslands we do. Often, their loss is an indicator of a broader habitat decline which affects all of us – from the water we drink, the soil we grow our food in, to the larger balance of ecosystems we too are a part of.

Today’s Unprecedented Attacks on the ESA

There has long been opposition to the ESA’s protections for vulnerable species and habitats, primarily in the name of agricultural development and economic growth. The Trump administration undertook various efforts, both executive and administrative, to prioritize economic development, prevent the use of the best available science, narrow the definition of “habitat,” and overall to interfere with federal agencies’ abilities to prevent species’ extinction. Now, the Biden-Harris administration is taking steps to reverse those actions and strengthen regulations to protect threatened species.

However, the attacks continue in Congress. In May, the Senate took an unprecedented step of voting to remove protections for an individually protected species, the critically imperiled lesser prairie chicken, using a deregulatory tool called the Congressional Review Act (CRA). The CRA is an extreme anti-regulatory law, passed under Speaker Gingrich’s leadership in the 90’s, that allows Congress to overturn rules made by an administration and explicitly bans any “substantially similar” rules from being pursued in the future. Historically, this has been abused by anti-environmental members of Congress who want to permanently strip away protections for our environment, wildlife, and natural heritage. In this case, it could prevent the Fish and Wildlife Service from ever protecting the lesser prairie-chicken under the Endangered Species Act in the future, even if its populations collapsed or just a handful of individual birds remained.

The Senate’s May CRA vote was quickly followed by two more votes to remove protections for the northern long-eared bat and to rescind the Biden administration’s expanded definition of “habitat,” which would severely curtail which lands or waters could be considered in ESA designations. President Biden has vowed to veto both resolutions should they pass the House, stating that they would undermine our country’s proud tradition of wildlife conservation and risk the extinction of many critical species.

This is part of a larger pattern of attacks on the ESA driven primarily by development and gas and oil interests. Just last week, House Republicans held a hearing “evaluating the costs of the Endangered Species Act” and advocating for individual landowners to make decisions about the future of these species, over scientists and experts. House Republicans also released their interior and environment appropriations bill which proposes funding for everything from the Environmental Protection Agency to the Department of Interior for the Fiscal Year 2024. The bill includes specific provisions rescinding protections under the ESA for critical species like the gray wolf, lesser prairie-chicken, northern long-eared bat, and sage grouse. And we expect to see additional amendments attacking endangered species and their habitats throughout this process.

What Can You Do?

Contact your Representative and tell them to oppose these attacks on the Endangered Species Act.

For Immediate Release, May 12, 2023


Israel Chavez, Doña Ana Village Association,
Jeanne Dodds, Endangered Species Coalition, 360.624.8653

New Mexico Mural Celebrating Biodiversity Unveiled by Local Artists, Partners

Mural Series to Commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Endangered Species Act

Doña Ana, N.M.—  A collaboration of artists and partners will unveil the first in a series of murals to commemorate the 50th year of the Endangered Species Act on May 19th, at 3:00 pm in Doña Ana, New Mexico. The event will feature a community celebration with creative activities for youth and opportunities to watch the mural in progress. Migration: A Natural Act is a striking portrayal of the natural magnificence of southwestern New Mexico, with a particular focus on its imperiled fauna. 

The mural, located at 135 Joe Gutierrez Street, Doña Ana (Las Cruces), New Mexico, highlights the Boreal Owl, Gila Monster, and two endangered fish species –  the Chihuahua Chub and Roundtail Chub. Migration is a recurring theme of the artwork, with the river symbolizing the innate movement of humans and animals across the landscape. The river depicted in the mural is a potent force, breathing new life into the terrain and restoring its vitality. In the mural’s corners, one can observe the towering cottonwood trees, which are indigenous to the Doña Ana community and serve as a poignant reminder of the region’s rich natural heritage.

“Despite the obstacles faced by the endangered species depicted in the mural, the artwork’s overarching message is one of hope. It conveys that through diligent effort and unwavering commitment, it is conceivable to re-establish equilibrium in the ecosystem and revive the region’s vitality,” said artist Raquel Madrigal. “The mural is a beautiful tribute to the significance of preserving the natural world and its diverse fauna.”

The Endangered Species Act 50th Anniversary mural series will spotlight regional ecological and cultural diversity within the US by highlighting plants and animals that are protected by the Endangered Species Act. Species that are currently listed and in danger of extinction will be featured as well as some species who have recovered thanks to this landmark legislation. Murals will be installed throughout 2023 at regional locations across the US, including in Oregon, Arizona, Massachusetts, Florida and in other states.

About the Artist

Raquel Madrigal is an interdisciplinary artist with a degree in Fine Arts, who is widely known for her captivating murals, posters and zines that incorporate her unique poetry. Her murals, in particular, have garnered attention for their powerful narrative highlighting the struggles and triumphs of working-class families as well as the endangered species in Southern New Mexico.

About Doña Ana Village Association

The Doña Ana Village Association (DAVA) was founded in 2021 as a result of several community conversations which demonstrated a serious need for community organizing and representation. The Village of Doña Ana is the oldest federally designated Colonia in southern New Mexico, and its representation is limited to legislators and county commissioners. 

About ESA at 50

In 2023, the 50th anniversary provides a unique, year-long opportunity to build support for the Endangered Species Act and imperiled species by celebrating conservation achievements, highlighting conservation needs, and generally reminding the public and decision-makers why plants, fish, and wildlife are beloved and vital to the heritage we share as Americans. Just as in 1973, an unprecedented coalition of agencies, organizations, and nonprofits are coming together to commemorate this conservation legacy.

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