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Thursday, August 15, 2013

Florida’s Threatened and Endangered Animals

Lara Miller, 
Natural Resources Agent

You may often hear the words “threatened” or “endangered” when naturalists are talking about a particular species. You might even hear “species of special concern” or folks arguing whether it is Federally-listed or State-listed. The good news is, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) has an updated report (October, 2012) to help clear up any confusion.

FWC is the agency responsible for maintaining the State list of animals. The status of these animals can be classified as Federally-designated Endangered, Federally-designated Threatened, State-designated Threatened or State-designated Species of Special Concern. As of November 2010, all Federally-listed species found in Florida are also included on Florida’s list as one of the Federally-designated assignments above. Species which are not Federally-listed, but are at risk of extinction in Florida are classified on the State list as State-designated Threatened.

All species with a State-designation were recently processed through biological status reviews. These reviews allow FWC to make decisions on the status of the species. Official status changes cannot be made until an updated management plan is approved for the species. In an effort to build consistency among the Federally-listed and State-listed species, the category of State-designated Species of Special Concern will eventually be eliminated. Once current management plans are revised, a decision will be made as to whether the species (currently listed as State-designated Species of Special Concern) will be modified to State-designated Threatened or removed from the list.

Other Federal agencies share the in authority to list species as endangered and threatened. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration-National Marine Fisheries Service (NOAA-NMFS) assists with the listing of the majority of marine species. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is the one responsible for administering the Federal list.

For a complete list of the listed animals from FWC, click here.

FWC is currently asking for public input on an Imperiled Species Management Plan for conserving 60 species on Florida’s Engendered and Threatened Species list. Show your environmental stewardship by getting involved and remember…

You can stay up to date on news and information affecting our environment by following your Pinellas County Natural Resource Extension Agent on Twitter or Facebook.


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