Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Six at-risk species up for review

The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service continually reviews the status of plants and animals on the federal list of endangered and threatened species. The service's Pacific region recently announced its five-year review of 70 species in Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Hawaii and Guam. Six of those species are birds in Hawaii and Guam, such as the Laysan Finch.

It's my impression that many North American birders remain unaware of the endemic birds in the Hawaiian Islands, which host more endangered species than any other state. Hawaii has 317 species within its boundaries -- 44 animals (of which 32 are birds) and 273 plants -- while California has the next highest tally at 308, 129 animals (of which 17 are birds) and 179 plants.

The six Pacific birds currently under review include: Maui Akepa, Oahu Creeper, Laysan Finch, Guam Micronesian Kingfisher, Nukupu'u (noo-koo-poo-oo) and Po'ouli (poh-oh-oo-lee).

To learn more about the Aloha State's endemic birds, visit Hawaii Audubon Society. To learn about species protected by the Endangered Species Act, visit the service's site.

Laysan Finch courtesy of U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service


Anonymous Anonymous said...

good links, and biologically it make sense that hawaii should have so many species if i remember my biology right. I've read that 25% of earth's species will be extinct by 2100 (or was it 2050)? so depressing, but a good reminder to do what we can.

April 20, 2006 12:20 PM  
Blogger Amy said...

Agreed, Dr. C, and we can do some things very easily, e.g. buy a $15 Duck Stamp that will purchase more habitat that could sustain at-risk species.

April 20, 2006 3:05 PM  

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