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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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Service seeks public comment on draft recovery plan for eastern massasauga rattlesnake
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is seeking public comment on a draft recovery plan for the eastern massasauga rattlesnake, a small and timid species that was listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act in 2016. The goal of the plan is to ensure the long-term viability of the snake to the point at which it no longer warrants ESA protection.
The eastern massasauga is found in parts of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, as well as in Ontario, Canada. Historically it also occurred in Minnesota and Missouri, but it is now considered extirpated in those states. The eastern massasauga was listed as threatened due to population declines linked to habitat loss, collection and intentional and unintentional killing. The draft recovery plan for the species includes actions such as habitat protection, population management and research.
Draft Recovery Plans for Rusty Patched Bumble Bee and Dakota Skipper Available for Comment
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is seeking public comment on draft plans to recover the rusty patched bumble bee, a species listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) in 2017 as well as the Dakota Skipper, which was listed as threatened under the ESA in 2014. The draft plans outline general management actions and criteria that indicate when the species may be considered recovered and eligible to be removed from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife.
Partners Celebrate Successful Recovery of Beloved Songbird
Bird enthusiasts from around the world travel to northern Michigan in hopes of catching sight of a Kirtland’s warbler, a small songbird once poised on the brink of extinction. Now the species is thriving thanks to decades of effort by a diverse group of dedicated partners. Due to the species’ remarkable recovery, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today announced that it no longer warrants protection under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
Final Environmental Impact Statement announced for Iowa’s MidAmerican Energy Company’s wind energy facilities
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announces availability of the final environmental impact statement on an application for incidental take of threatened and endangered species at select wind facilities operated by MidAmerican Energy Company in Iowa. The documents are expected to publish in the Federal Register Monday October 7, 2019, under docket number FWS-R3-ES-2018-0037.
Eastern Plant Once Thought Extinct Now Recovered Federal Protection No Longer Needed
Once thought extinct, running buffalo clover, a perennial plant native to parts of the eastern United States, is thriving and is now considered recovered. The change in status for the clover came about thanks to a number of state, federal and private conservation partners working together for over three decades. Because of their efforts, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is now proposing to remove Endangered Species Act (ESA) protections for the species.
Service Completes Initial Review on Petition to List Lake Sturgeon
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has completed initial review of a petition to list the lake sturgeon under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The Service has concluded there is substantial information to consider listing the species as threatened or endangered. The Service will begin an in-depth review of this species to determine if the fish should be listed.
Two endangered piping plover chicks successfully fledged from Montrose Beach in Chicago
In August 10, 2019, we passed a milestone with the first successful fledging of piping plover chicks in Chicago since at least 1961, when a pair of plovers were seen at Wolf Lake during the nesting season.
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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