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Cheoah bald salamander. Photo by Andy Kraemer, CC BY-NC 2.0.

Additional information on six petitioned species including three salamanders, one lizard, and two insects found in the Southeast

Any plant or animal that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has been petitioned to list and protect under the Endangered Species Act is considered “at-risk.” Recognizing that conservation is only successful through partnerships, the Service leveraged the work of state wildlife agencies and a variety of other conservation partners to assess whether these species at-risk require protection under the Act.

Since receipt of the 2010 petitions, 60 southeastern species have not required federal protection as a result of either conservation actions, additional information (e.g., updated survey data), reevaluation of threats to their survival, and a lack of substantial information indicating further need for evaluation since 2010. Those same partnerships have ensured another 11 species now require less protection or no protection at all.

About the petitions

When we are petitioned to provide federal protection to a species, our biologists review the information presented by the petitioner as well as the information in our files prior to the date of the petition, to determine whether a closer look at the species’ status is advisable.

The six species included in these findings came from the following petitions to list them under the Endangered Species Act:

We have summarized our findings below. More detail is available by clicking the link to the Federal Register docket number for each species.

Not substantial findings

Four petitioned species found in the Southeast will not be given further consideration for federal protection at this time. If you have further questions, visit our information page on 90-day findings or contact Andreas Moshogianis at andreas_moshogianis@fws.gov or 404-679-7119.

Cheoah bald salamander

A close up photo of a gray-silver salamander walking on a layer of wet moss.
Cheoah bald salamander by aposematic herpetologist, CC BY-NC 2.0

Federal Register docket: FWS–R4–ES–2015-0081

Known occurrences: North Carolina The Center claims that the salamander warrants listing due to:

  • Habitat destruction due to clearcutting
  • Inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms
  • Natural or manmade factors including small, isolated population dynamics

Based on our review of the petition and sources cited in the petition, the Fish and Wildlife Service finds that the petition does not provide substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action, to list the species, may be warranted.

South Mountain gray-cheeked salamander

A dark colored salamander standing on green moss.
South Mountain gray-cheeked salamander by John P. Clare, CC BY NC-ND 2.0

Federal Register docket: FWS–R4–ES–2015-0117

Known occurrences: North Carolina

The Center claims that the salamander warrants listing due to:

  • Habitat destruction due to clearcutting and residential development
  • Inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms
  • Natural or manmade factors including small, isolated population dynamics

Based on our review of the petition and sources cited in the petition, the Fish and Wildlife Service finds that the petition does not provide substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action, to list the species, may be warranted.

Southern dusky salamander

A mud colored salamander standing on green vegetation.
Southern dusky salamander in Florida by squamatologist, CC BY NC-ND 2.0

Federal Register docket: FWS–R4–ES–2016-0038

Known occurrences: North Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia and possibly South Carolina

The Center claims that the salamander warrants listing due to:

  • Disease
  • Inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms

Based on our review of the petition and sources cited in the petition, the Fish and Wildlife Service finds that the petition does not provide substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action, to list the species, may be warranted.

Monito skink

Federal Register docket: FWS–R4–ES–2016-0034

Known occurrences: Puerto Rico

The Center claims that the salamander warrants listing due to:

  • Habitat destruction from human disturbance
  • Predation
  • Inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms
  • Natural and manmade factors including climate change, pollutants, and isolation and stochastic events

Based on our review of the petition and sources cited in the petition, the Fish and Wildlife Service finds that the petition does not provide substantial scientific or commercial information indicating that the petitioned action, to list the species, may be warranted.

Substantial findings

A more thorough scientific review known as a 12-month finding has been triggered for the following species. The Fish and Wildlife Service will seek to collect additional scientific and commercial data to determine whether these species may require federal protection.

Yellow-banded bumble bee

A close up image of a bee illustrating the many tiny hairs the insect has all over its body.
Yellow-banded bumble bee. Public domain photo by USGS Bee Inventory and Monitoring Lab.

Federal Register docket: FWS-R5-ES-2016-0024

Known occurrences: Connecticut, Kentucky, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

The Fish and Wildlife Service finds that the petition presents substantial scientific or commercial information indicating the petitioned action, to list the species, may be warranted. The petition presented substantial information on the following factors:

  • Present or threatened destruction, modification or curtailment of the species’ habitat or range
  • Disease
  • Inadequacy of existing regulatory mechanisms
  • Natural or manmade factors

However, during our status review we will thoroughly evaluate all potential threats to the species.

To submit your information, please contact Krishna Gifford at Krishna_Gifford@fws.gov or 413-253-8619.

American burying beetle

A large black beetle with orange and brown spolotches on it's back.
American burying beetle. Public domain photo by Lindsay Vivian, USFWS.

Federal Register docket: FWS-R2-ES-2016-0011

Known occurrences: Arkansas, Kansas, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Dakota, and Texas

The Fish and Wildlife Service finds that the petition presents substantial scientific or commercial information indicating the petitioned action, to delist the species, may be warranted. The petition presented substantial information on the following factors:

  • Present or threatened destruction, modification or curtailment of the species’ habitat or range

However, during our status review we will thoroughly evaluate all potential threats to the species

To submit your information, please contact Brady McGee at Brady_McGee@fws.gov or 505-248-6657.

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