The U.S. Congress, through the Endangered Species Act of 1973, recognized that endangered and threatened species of wildlife and plants "are of esthetic, ecological, educational, historical, recreational, and scientific value to the Nation and its people." Some of the many specific reasons to invest money and effort into actions to conserve species threatened by extinction include:
- Natural balance of life,
- Medicinal purposes,
- Pest control and pollination,
- Monitors of environmental health,
- Benefits to clean air and water, and
- Other economic and intangible values.
More than 20 different types of wildlife in West Virginia are protected by the Endangered Species Act, from the Cheat Mountain salamander to the SJames spinymussel and Virginia big-eared bat. View the map below and learn where they are by county (DOC) and by aquatic habitat (PDF).
Learn more about Endangered Species in the Northeast Region.