Endangered Species
Endangered Species
Our History

Pre ESA

San Joaquin kit fox.

San Joaquin kit fox

Pre ESA

The San Joaquin kit fox was among the first species to gain federal protection under the Endangered Species Preservation Act of 1966. Learn more

1970s

Higgins eye pearlymussels.

Higgins eye pearlymussel

1970s

The Higgins eye pearlymussel was among the first invertebrates to gain Endangered Species Act protection in 1976. Learn more

1980s

Black-footed ferret.

Black-footed ferret

1980s

A ranch dog retrieves a black-footed ferret – presumed extinct – in 1981 near Meeteetse, Wyoming. Learn more

1990s

California condor.

California condor

1990s

The California condor is reintroduced back into the wild in southern California after its removal from the wild in 1988. Learn more

2000s

Bald eagle.

Bald eagle

2000s

After nearly disappearing from most of the United States, the bald eagle recovers and is removed from ESA protection in 2007. Learn more

2010s

Chiricahua leopard frog.

Chiricahua leopard frog

2010s

In August 2011, the 10,000th captive-bred Chiricauha leopard frog is released into the wild. Learn more

Endangered sandplain gerardia.

"My vision is to see a field in bloom—make the whole place pink," says Chris Raithel of the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, referring to restoring populations of the endangered sandplain gerardia... More

Indiana bats in cave.

Indiana bats are found over most of the eastern half of the United states. Almost half of them hibernate in caves in southern Indiana... More

Female polar bear.

This video was editied and compiled from raw footage recorded by a camera equipped radio collar that was put on a female polar bear in the Beaufort Sea during April 2014 by the U.S. Geological Survey... More

  • Endangered Sandplain gerardia.

    Featured State Story:
    Rhode Island Landowners Needed to Conserve Sandplain Gerardia More »
    Read Read more success stories from around the country.

  • Indiana bats in cave.

    Featured Species:
    Conserving the Indiana Bat
    Learn more

  • Female polar bear.

    Partnership Story:
    A Day in the Life of a Polar Bear
    Learn more

Know Your Species

Screen capture of interactive U.S. mapView our new interactive map to learn about endangered species success in your state or territory.

Launch map


Media Kit/Resources

Loggerhead sea turtle hatchling. Credit: Becky Skiba/USFWSA collection of resources to help journalists build their story, coloring pages for children to learn about endangered species across the country, and other tools to celebrate the ESA. Learn more

Species on Refuges

Still frame of 40 Years of Endangered Species in the National Wildlife Refuge System video.National wildlife refuges are home to more than 280 of the nation's 1,311 endangered and threatened species.

Learn more

ESA 101 video

For 40 years, the Endangered Species Act has protected America's imperiled plants and animals—from the carnivorous green pitcher plant of Southeastern wetlands, to the western snowy plover of northwestern beaches, to the iconic polar bear of the Arctic.

This video takes us through the successes the ESA has brought in the last four decades, and looks ahead to the work that still needs to be done.

Last updated: November 27, 2017