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Endangered Species Program
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Endangered Species program is conserving and restoring threatened and endangered species and their ecosystems.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife
Service in the Midwest
The Midwest Region includes Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin.
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Running buffalo clover saved from extinction -- Service removes eastern plant from list of endangered species
Running buffalo clover, a perennial plant native to parts of the eastern U.S. and once thought to be extinct, is thriving and is now considered recovered. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is pleased to announce a final rule removing Endangered Species Act (ESA) protections for the species.
“The recovery of the running buffalo clover is a great example of the success of conservation partnerships,” said Charles Wooley, regional director of the Service’s Great Lakes Region. “We applaud the efforts of our state, federal and private conservation partners who came together to ensure its long-term future and who persevered in searching for and discovering new populations.”
Once found in nine states, running buffalo clover was believed to be extinct prior to 1983, when one population was found in West Virginia. In 1987, the Service listed running buffalo clover as endangered. Since then, additional populations have been identified, including 21 populations reported after the agency’s 2019 proposal to delist the plant. Running buffalo clover is now known to occur in 175 populations in Indiana, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. Of the known populations, 88 are on public lands or privately owned lands with conservation agreements.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reopens public comment period on proposal to list two Missouri crayfishes as threatened under the Endangered Species Act
On April 27th, 2021, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will reopen a public comment period on a proposed rule to list two species of Missouri crayfish, the Big Creek and St. Francis River crayfish, as threatened under the Endangered Species Act . The proposed rule originally published in the Federal Register on September 17, 2020. Reopening the comment period allows the agency to host a virtual public information session and an associated public hearing on this matter.
Missouri population of eastern hellbender listed as endangered
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has listed the Missouri distinct population segment of the eastern hellbender as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Endangered species are those that are in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of their range.
While eastern hellbenders in other parts of the United States are not facing extinction, populations in Missouri are geographically and genetically distinct, meriting separate consideration under the ESA.
Trump Administration Returns Management and Protection of Gray Wolves to States and Tribes Following Successful Recovery Efforts
More than 45 years after gray wolves were first listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the Trump Administration and its many conservation partners are announcing the successful recovery of the gray wolf and its delisting from the ESA. U.S. Secretary of the Interior David L. Bernhardt was at the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge to announce that state and tribal wildlife management agency professionals will resume responsibility for sustainable management and protection of delisted gray wolves in states with gray wolf populations, while the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) monitors the species for five years to ensure the continued success of the species.
Service proposes to list two species of Missouri crayfish as threatened under the Endangered Species Act
We at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service invite you to learn more about our recent proposal to list the Big River crayfish and the St. Francis River crayfish as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. An online presentation provides an explanation of why the species were proposed, how the crayfishes would be protected and more detailed information on where they occur.
Partnership-driven efforts lead to downlisting of the American burying beetle
Thanks in part to the efforts of dedicated partners across this species’ range, the first insect added to the endangered species list is staging a comeback: the American burying beetle. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is downlisting the beetle under the Endangered Species Act, from endangered to threatened.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service determines designating critical habitat is not warranted for the rusty patched bumble bee
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced that designating critical habitat is not warranted for the endangered rusty patched bumble bee. The rusty patched bumble bee was listed as endangered in 2017 after surveys found its populations had dropped by nearly 90 percent. The bee once was found in 31 states and provinces from Connecticut to South Dakota. It now occurs only in scattered populations in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Ohio, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Ontario, Canada.
What We Do
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is responsible for administering the Endangered Species Act. To fulfill our responsibilities, we do the following:
Candidate Conservation: identify and assess declining species that may need Endangered Species Act protection and take steps to conserve those species.
Listing: take steps to list candidate species as endangered or threatened and designate critical habitat. We also remove species from the Threatened and Endangered Species List ("delist") when they no longer need Endangered Species Act protection.
Section 7 Consultation: all Federal agencies have a responsiblity to conserve threatened and endangered species and to ensure that their actions do not jeopardize the existence of any listed species. Under the authority of Section 7 of the Act, we consult with Federal agencies to help them fulfill their obligations.
Permits: issue permits to "take" listed species, under certain conditions.
Habitat Conservation Plans (HCPs): work with Incidental Take permit applicants to help them prepare HCPs that minimize and mitigate the effects of their incidental take.
Grants: provide grants to States under Section 6 of the Endangered Species Act. These funds may, in turn, be awarded to private landowners and groups for conservation projects.
State Field Offices
We have Ecological Services Field Offices in each of the eight upper Midwest States. For project reviews, Section 7 consultation, or information about endangered species that you do not find on this site, please contact the Field Office in your state.
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