Threatened and Endangered Species in Nebraska
Nebraska has plant and animal species that are listed as threatened or endangered at the federal and/or state level. Populations of animals or plants can decline due to a variety of factors including, but not limited to, habitat loss or degradation, invasive species, disease, and human-related mortality. There are federal and state programs established to protect endangered and threatened species.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is the principal federal partner responsible for administering the Endangered Species Act (ESA), federal legislation intended to provide a means to conserve the ecosystems upon which endangered and threatened species depend and provide programs for conservation of those species, thus preventing extinction of plants and animals.
The USFWS definitions:
- Endangered Species - an animal or plant species in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range.
- Threatened Species - an animal or plant species likely to become endangered within the foreseeable future throughout all or a significant portion of its range.
- Extinct Species - a species that no longer exists. For ESA, a species currently believed to be extinct.
- Ecosystem - a dynamic and interrelating complex of plant and animal communities and their associated nonliving (such as physical and chemical) environment.
Information from the USFWS Endangered Species Program: http://www.fws.gov/endangered/.
The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission (NGPC) has an objective to preserve and increase populations of Nebraska's endangered and threatened species of wildlife and plants. Through the NGPC Natural Heritage Program, they strive to build resiliency of Nebraska's ecosystems by enhancing the habitat that wildlife need to survive and to prevent future threatened and endangered species listings. The Nebraska Nongame and Endangered Species Conservation Act is the Nebraska law that protects listed species. A species may be at-risk of extinction in Nebraska, but not throughout its entire range. Therefore, some species have a state status as endangered or threatened, but may be listed differently under the federal status.
Nebraska endangered and threatened species resources:
- Endangered and Threatened Species Range Maps (individual species maps available by clicking on species name in table below)
- Nebraska Endangered and Threatened Species List(shown below)
- Spatial data of Nebraska Endangered and Threatened Species for use with GIS available at: http://outdoornebraska.ne.gov/wildlife/programs/nongame/Heritage/ET_Ranges.asp
Nebraska Endangered and Threatened Species
|Common Name||Scientific Name||State Status||Federal Status|
|Eskimo Curlew*||Numenius borealis||Endangered||Endangered|
|Whooping Crane||Grus americana||Endangered||Endangered|
|Interior Least Tern||Sternula antillarum athalassos||Endangered||Endangered|
|Piping Plover||Charadrius melodus||Threatened||Threatened|
|Mountain Plover||Charadrius montanus||Threatened|
|Black-footed Ferret*||Mustela nigripes||Endangered||Endangered|
|Northern Long-eared Bat||Myotis septentrionalis||Threatened||Threatened|
|Swift Fox||Vulpes velox||Endangered|
|River Otter||Lutra canadensis||Threatened|
|Southern Flying Squirrel||Glaucomys volans||Threatened|
|Pallid Sturgeon||Scaphirhynchus albus||Endangered||Endangered|
|Topeka Shiner||Notropis topeka||Endangered||Endangered|
|Sturgeon Chub||Macrhybopsis gelida||Endangered|
|Blacknose Shiner||Notropis heterolepis||Endangered|
|Lake Sturgeon||Acipenser fulvescens||Threatened|
|Northern Redbelly Dace||Phoxinus eos||Threatened|
|Finescale Dace||Phoxinus neogaeus||Threatened|
|American Burying Beetle||Nicrophorus americanus||Endangered||Endangered|
|Salt Creek Tiger Beetle||Cicindela nevadica lincolniana||Endangered||Endangered|
|Scaleshell Mussel||Leptodea leptodon||Endangered||Endangered|
|Blowout Penstemon||Penstemon haydenii||Endangered||Endangered|
|Colorado Butterfly Plant||Gaura neomexicana ssp. coloradensis||Endangered||Threatened|
|Western Prairie Fringed Orchid||Platanthera praeclara||Threatened||Threatened|
|Ute Ladies'-tresses||Spiranthes diluvialis||Threatened||Threatened|
|American Ginseng||Panax quinquefolium||Threatened|
|Small White Lady's Slipper||Cypripedium candidum||Threatened|
|* Species of historical occurrence in Nebraska but no known extant populations.|