Paul Weiland Discusses Tentative Ruling on Bees Classified as Fish for Endangered Species Listing


Paul Weiland was quoted in the Bloomberg article, "'Are Bees Fish' Argument May Lose in Endangered Species Case." The article examines a decision by Superior Court Judge James Arguelles, who took under submission a tentative ruling that set aside a state Fish and Game Commission’s decision to consider four species of bumblebees for protections under the California Endangered Species Act. Nossaman's Ben Rubin handled the argument.

According to Bloomberg, "Insects aren’t specifically protected under [California] state law. But proponents of listing the Crotch, Franklin’s, Western and Suckley cuckoo bumblebees argued that the pollinators fell under the definition of fish—which are eligible, because they are invertebrates and don’t have backbones."

In his recent ruling, Judge Arguelles tentatively agreed with the Almond Alliance of California, California Association of Pest Control Advisers, the California Cotton Ginners and Growers Association and other groups who opposed listing the species because state law clearly didn’t protect insects.

Commenting on the case, Paul, who represents the Almond Alliance of California and the additional groups opposing the "bees as fish" classification, said they were pleased the court was taking the ramifications of the commission’s rulings seriously. "We are disappointed that the state continues to engage in revisionist history to support its position,” said Paul.

The case is Almond Alliance of California v. California Fish and Game Commission, Cal. Super. Ct., No. 34-2019-80003216, 11/13/20.

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