Threatened and Endangered Species
Working to conserve and restore endangered and threatened species and their habitats
The native animals and plants of our nation belong to all of us.
In the early 1970’s our nation decided we did not want to watch species go extinct for lack of attention or effort. The bald eagle, our national symbol, was in serious decline, as were many other species. The Endangered Species Act was established in 1973 to commit government agencies to preventing extinction of species, and promoting their conservation with a goal of their recovery.
The current list of federally endangered and threatened species in the nation can be found at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's endangered species website. But the federally endangered and threatened species in Maryland and Delaware can be found here.
Bog turtle. Credit: USFWS
An “endangered” species is added to the list when it is in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range. A “threatened” species is added to the list when it is likely to become endangered in the foreseeable future. The list of endangered and threatened species includes mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, arachnids, crustaceans, snails, insects, fishes, mussels, and plants.
The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is the federal agency responsible for coordinating the conservation of those plants and animals threatened with extinction. We work with other federal agencies, state and local governments, agencies, American Indian tribes, conservation organizations and private landowners to conserve endangered species and their habitat. The goal of the ESA is recover species so they no longer need protection. Much of the progress in recovery of endangered species can be attributed to support and involvement from our various partners.
The Service prepared National Bald Eagle Management Guidelines to help landowners, land managers and others avoid disturbing bald eagles.
How we conserve endangered species:
For more information, contact:
Chief, Division of Strategic Habitat Conservation
Endangered Species Program Leader