Conserving the Nature of America
Press Release
America’s Rarest Species Receive $12.6 Million in ESA Grants for Hawaii, Oregon, Washington

September 15, 2016

Contact(s):

Christina Meister, Christina_Meister@fws.gov, (703) 358-2284


Endangered Hawaiian Petrels, or ?Ua?u, are one of two seabird species endemic to the Hawaiian Islands and are found nowhere else on Earth. They have declined dramatically due to predation by introduced mammals, such as cats, rats, and pigs, and due to collisions with man-made structures during their nocturnal flights from their breeding colonies in the mountains to the ocean where they search for food. Credit: USFWS

Hawaii, Oregon and Washington will receive $12.6 million in grants through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund (CESCF) to protect threatened and endangered species. The grants will enable states to work with private landowners, conservation groups and other government agencies to develop projects that protect federally listed species and their habitats. 

Overall, 20 states will receive $44.8 million in grants from the fund, which is authorized under Section 6 of the Endangered Species Act.

“If our children are to inherit a world with something called a leatherback sea turtle, northern long-eared bat or California tiger salamander, we need to commit to conservation at every level,” said Service Director Dan Ashe. “By strategically investing in projects that have a proven track record of success, we are putting our limited resources to the most effective use and building a sustainable conservation legacy.”

“These grants will enable state fish and wildlife agencies to advance the stewardship of our nation’s fish and wildlife resources,” said Dave Chanda, President of the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies and Director of New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife. “We appreciate the strong ties formed by state agencies and their partners to protect these imperiled wildlife species and their habitats, which are critical to the on-the-ground success of these projects.”

The funded projects in the Pacific Region are:

  • In Hawaii – Helemano Wilderness Area (Honolulu County), $2 million; Kaua?i Seabird Habitat Conservation Program: Kaua?i Island Utility Cooperative Habitat Conservation Plan (Kaua?i County), $906,105; Hawaiian Hoary Bat Habitat Conservation Plan for Biomass and Timber Harvest in the Hawaiian Islands (Hawai?i, Honolulu, Kalawao, Kaua?i, and Maui counties), $395,000; and Kalua?aha Ranch Conservation Easement (Maui County), $500,000;
  • In Washington – Mt. Si Area Old Growth Phase II (King County), $2 million; Grand Coulee Ranch (Douglas County) $2 million; West Rocky Prairie (Thurston County), $2 million; and South Puget Sound Prairie Species Conservation (Thurston County), $600,000;
  • In Oregon – Deschutes Basin Multi-Species Habitat Conservation Plan (Deschutes, Crook, Jefferson, Klamath, Wasco and Sherman Counties), $700,000; Rogue River Recovery Land Acquisition (Jackson County), $500,000; and Mountcrest Working Forest Conservation Easement (Jackson County), $1 million.

For full details on each project in the Pacific Region, go to http://bit.ly/2d3TB2O

CESCF funding is provided through three competitive grant programs: the Habitat Conservation Planning Assistance Grants Program, which provides funds to support the development of Habitat Conservation Plans (HCPs) that protect habitat for listed species; the Recovery Land Acquisition Grants Program, which provides funds for the acquisition of habitat in support of approved and draft species recovery plans; and the HCP Land Acquisition Grants Program, which provides funds to acquire habitat for listed species to complement approved HCPs.

The grants are funded in part by the Land and Water Conservation Fund, which was established by Congress in 1965. The fund promotes access to outdoor recreation resources for present and future generations by providing funding to federal, state and local governments to purchase land, water and wetlands for the benefit of all Americans. For the past 51 years, the fund has supported more than 40,000 conservation and outdoor recreation projects nationwide. President Obama proposed full funding at $900 million for the Land and Water Conservation Fund in the Fiscal Year 2017 budget, and is pursuing full, permanent and mandatory funding for the fund’s programs beginning in 2018.

The ESA provides a critical safety net for North America’s native fish, wildlife and plants. The Service is working to actively engage conservation partners and the public in the search for improved and innovative ways to conserve and recover imperiled species. For a complete list of FY 2016 CESCF funded projects visit: https://www.fws.gov/endangered/grants/index.html. To learn more about the Service’s Ecological Services Program visit www.fws.gov/endangered.


The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.

For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit http://www.fws.gov/. Connect with our Facebook page, follow our tweets, watch our YouTube Channel and download photos from our Flickr page.