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Abstract Detail

Conservation of North American Lichens and the Ecosystems They Support


This Land is Your Land: Lichens As Endangered Species in the United States.

The Endangered Species Act was passed by the United States Congress in 1973 to prevent the loss or harm of endangered and threatened species and to preserve the ecosystems that these species depend upon. While marked by a checkered history, the ESA remains one of our nation’s most powerful conservation statutes and has resulted in the protection of extensive native biodiversity including the acquisition of thousands of acres that serve as critical habitat.  
There is growing evidence of the existence of important reservoirs of lichen biodiversity in the United States that host 10s to 100s of species potentially or actually threatened at the federal level by imminent habitat destruction, inadequate regulatory mechanisms, or other factors—manmade and natural. Currently protected by the ESA are 837 angiosperms, two lichens, and zero bryophytes. Whereas we might have claimed a lack of sufficient data for federal protection of lichens several decades ago, ample supporting evidence now exists, and this should not be disregarded.  
This talk serves as a call to action to the American Bryological and Lichenological Society, as well as to supporting societies, to back the petitioning of candidate lichens for federal protection by the Endangered Species Act, as administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. I will outline steps necessary to propose the listing of several candidate species and then review the data supporting this proposed action.    

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1 - University of Colorado, Boulder, EBIO & Museum of Natural History

united states
endangered species act
u.s. fish and wildlife service.

Presentation Type: Symposium or Colloquium Presentation
Session: SY11
Location: Salmon/Snake/Boise Centre
Date: Wednesday, July 30th, 2014
Time: 2:15 PM
Number: SY11003
Abstract ID:733
Candidate for Awards:None

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