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North Florida Field Office

2007 Wood Stork Five-Year Review


September 28, 2007

Media Contact: Chuck Underwood 904-731-3332

U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service Announces
Availability of the Wood Stork Five-year Review

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) announced today the completion and availability of the five-year status review of the wood stork.

After reviewing all of the best scientific and commercially available information and data, the Service recommended that the current listing classification for the wood storks be upgraded from endangered to threatened.

According to Service scientists, the data shows that the wood stork is expanding its range and adapting to habitat changes.

“This expansion is accompanied by numerous successes including in 2006 when that breeding season marked the first time since the early 1960's when there have been more than 10,000 nesting pairs,” said Dave Hankla, the Service's field supervisor for its North Florida Ecological Services Office in Jacksonville.

Service biologists acknowledged that the 2007 nesting season was low in comparison to recent years, but said this is likely in response to poor nesting conditions caused by severe drought conditions.

“Regional and local environmental conditions have always affected the breeding success of wood storks,” said Bill Brooks, a Service fish and wildlife biologist and primary author of the review. “The long reproductive lifespan of the wood stork allows it to tolerate reproductive failure in some years due to droughts or unseasonably heavy rainfall.”

The Service's five-year review also contains other recommendations for future actions aimed at continuing the wood stork's progress toward recovery.

The five-year review and a list of Frequently Asked Questions are available online at http://www.fws.gov/northflorida or may be requested by email to woodstork @ fws.gov, by fax at 904-232-2404, by mail at U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Attn: Wood Stork Five-year Review, 6620 Southpoint Drive South, Suite 310, Jacksonville, FL 32216-0958, or by telephone at 904/232-2580.  Please include your name and street mailing address in your request.  Email requests will receive an automated response confirming receipt of your request.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is the principal federal agency responsible for conserving, protecting and enhancing fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. Visit the Service's website at http://www.fws.gov.

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Last modified September 28, 2007

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