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Celebrate Endangered Species Day

Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission - Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The Endangered Species Act (ESA) was passed in 1973 to protect endangered and threatened plant and animal species. An Endangered species is in danger of becoming extinct throughout its habitat range. A Threatened species is likely to become endangered.

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), a bureau of the U.S. Department of the Interior, is responsible for listing species (adding to the list), delisting species (removing from the list), and reclassifying species (making changes to the listing) protected by the ESA. The ESA outlines protective measures which make it illegal to “harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture or collect” threatened or endangered species.

The USFWS also develops recovery plans for Endangered or Threatened species. Endangered and Threatened species are protected by state and local laws.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the ESA. Since its inception, the ESA has helped recover over 30 species and saved numerous other species from extinction.

Endangered Species Day, Friday, May 16, recognizes and encourages national efforts to save America's endangered species and their habitats. Here's a list of ways you can commemorate this special day:

Learn about Arkansas's endangered species — ANHC maintains a Rare Species Search Engine . You can also visit our Image Gallery for photos of Rare Animals and Rare Plants . Visit the website of the Arkansas Field Office of the USFWS for more information.

Participate in an Endangered Species Day event near you. You can search for one here .

Read a book about endangered species. This link is a good place to begin.

Send an Endangered Species E-card.

Research and plant native species in your yard. Native plants provide food and shelter for native wildlife. Our Native Gardening Guide will get you started.

Educators can find tools on ANHC's Tools for Teaching web page including discussion guides, lesson plans, activity sheets, posters, and a PowerPoint presentation. You can find lesson plans for national ESA topics on the Endangered Species Coalition's Teacher Resource Center page. 



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