The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announces the availability of a draft recovery plan for the Neuse River waterdog, found in the Neuse and Tar-Pamlico River Basins in North Carolina. The public now has an opportunity to review and comment on the recovery plan for this species, listed by the Service as threatened in June 2021.
Among some of the rarest salamander species in the southeastern United States, the Neuse River waterdog is a unique aquatic salamander, who lives under water and keeps its gills into adulthood. Neuse River waterdogs require large, flowing streams and rivers with large rocks or logs to hide under, decomposing leaves for young to live in, and clear water with minimal silt. As an indicator species, its presence signifies clean water and healthy streams. The primary threat to the Neuse River waterdog is habitat degradation, affected by water quality and quantity; sedimentation; natural and man-made barriers which restrict movement; and weather events.
The draft recovery plan for the Neuse River waterdog is available at the following link:
Recovery plans, like the one for the Neuse River waterdog, provide guidance and establish criteria for determining when species can be considered for delisting, no longer requiring protection under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). They also include site-specific actions necessary for species’ recovery and estimate the time and costs required for implementing those actions. These plans identify objective, measurable criteria to track recovery of a species. As these plans are not regulatory documents, no agency or entity is required by the ESA to implement actions in a recovery plan.
To obtain a copy of the draft recovery plan by mail, send a request to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Raleigh Ecological Services Field Office, P.O. Box 33726 Raleigh, NC 27636-3726 or by phone: 919-856-4520.
To ensure consideration, the Service must receive written comments on the draft recovery plan on or before Sept.17, 2023. However, the Service will accept information about any species at any time. Submit comments in writing to Raleigh@fws.gov, firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail to the address above.
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. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov/southeast. Connect with us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/usfwssoutheast, follow our tweets at www.twitter.com/usfwssoutheast, watch our YouTube Channel at http://www.youtube.com/usfws, and download photos from our Flickr page at http://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwssoutheast.