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US Fish & Wildlife Service FieldNotes

Endangered Black-footed Ferrets Escorted by the East Lansing Field Office to Canada

Region 3, December 16, 2013
Only 18 black-footed ferrets existed in 1986 when captive-breeding efforts began.
Only 18 black-footed ferrets existed in 1986 when captive-breeding efforts began. - Photo Credit: n/a
Service Fish and Wildlife Biologist Jeremy N. Moore stands before 12 caged black-footed ferrets, which he transported from Detroit Metropolitan Airport, Detroit, Michigan, to Canada.
Service Fish and Wildlife Biologist Jeremy N. Moore stands before 12 caged black-footed ferrets, which he transported from Detroit Metropolitan Airport, Detroit, Michigan, to Canada. - Photo Credit: n/a

On November 20, 2013, Fish and Wildlife Biologist Jeremy N. Moore of East Lansing’s Ecological Services Field Office escorted 12 black-footed ferrets  from the Detroit Metropolitan Airport  to Windsor, Canada, in the company of members from the Toronto Zoo. The dozen ferrets had been packaged by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s National Black-footed Ferret Conservation Center in Carr, Colorado, and flown to Detroit from Denver, Colorado. The ferrets will be acclimated and placed into the Toronto Zoo's black-footed ferret breeding program next spring. Some of the kits born will be selected to stay in the breeding program and then returned to Carr next year. Other offspring from the Toronto Zoo breeding program will be reintroduced into prairie habitat of Saskatchewan, Canada, as well as other reintroduction sites in North America. Conservation and reintroduction efforts to support this endangered species have come a long way. In 1987, 18 black-footed ferrets were captured from the wild to begin a desperate captive breeding program to rescue the species from extinction. Today, reintroduction efforts have led to an estimated North American population of 1,000 black-footed ferrets. The East Lansing Field Office was privileged to assist and share in this effort.

Contact Info: Jeremy Moore, 517-351-8318, jeremy_n_moore@fws.gov