Today the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officially listed the lesser prairie-chicken as a "threatened" species under the Endangered Species Act.
“It's a sad day when a species has to get listed. The bright spot is that the service has opened the door to innovative approaches for species conservation, as demonstrated by its commitment to range-wide planning. By sharing the responsibility for species protection with the states and private landowners, the Service has increased the potential for recovery of the lesser prairie-chicken. This is a big evolution in how the Act gets implemented.
"We believe more can, and should, be done to engage private landowners. I am hopeful that through modern species conservation measures like habitat exchanges currently under consideration with the service, we can meet the challenge of feeding and fueling a growing population without harming the planet in the process."