Endangered species are species of plants, animals, or other organisms at risk of extinction. In the United States, the federal government determines the status of a vulnerable species using definitions provided by the Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA). After federal agencies determine the level of risk of extinction for a species, the ESA includes rules "to protect and recover imperiled species and the ecosystems upon which they depend." The federal agencies responsible for identifying species are the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), an agency within the US Department of the Interior (DOI), and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), an agency of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) under the Department of Commerce (DOC).
The ESA defines endangered...Read more