U.S. Rep. Jerry Carl said a small animal populating Alabama beaches should be taken off the endangered species list.
Carl (R-Mobile) joined FM Talk 106.5 “Midday Mobile” radio show Monday and said the Alabama beach mouse is causing problems for businesses on the coast.
“I think that beach mice is a great example of what’s going on in this country,” Carl said. “They’ll use this beach mouse, for example, and they’ll raise a ton of money, they want a five-year study here, and they want money for the federal government to do studies, and it’s all a way to raise money and shut down legitimate business and growth that should be there.”
The beach mouse has been on the engendered species list in the state since 1986, and has remained on the list despite several reviews.
“Yes it should be delisted,” Carl said. “You know how fast rats multiply? I mean the fact they’re on the beach doesn’t make any difference, they’re still a rat. They still multiply by the thousands.”
The congressman doesn’t think this one animal should be able to stop businesses from expanding around the beaches.
“When you can shut down an economy,” he said. “I’m told by developers over there, between rats and turtles … they add 40% to the cost of a job … They have to pay all these environmental groups to come in and do environmental studies about the rats.”
Carl said it’s time to do a real review of the animals on the endangered species list.
“I think we ought to take 57 of those creatures and shellfish and other things and we need to look at them,” he said. “Have they made a recovery? Because if they’ve made a recovery, let’s take them off.”
He also said he’s not against protecting the environment, but called for it to be done in a reasonable manner.
“And nobody’s a bigger environmentalist than you and I,” he said to the host. “And I’m quick to tell an environmentalist I own the wetlands behind my house. I deliberately bought those wetlands to save those wetlands from being [destroyed].”