Check Out These Illinois Animals On The Endangered Species List
If I asked you to guess the total number of Illinois' animal population that are listed on the Endangered Species List, what number would you come up with?
If you guessed that there are over 100 animals on that list, congratulations...not that over 100 endangered animals is anything to congratulate anyone about.
If there's any good news in knowing that 100-plus animals in Illinois are endangered, I guess it would be the fact that none of Illinois' endangered animals make the list of the top ten most endangered animals in the United States.
EcoWatch.com's list of the most endangered animals in the United States includes:
- Florida Panther
- Florida Manatee
- Red Wolf
- California Condor
- Black-Footed Ferret
- Loggerhead Sea Turtle
- San Joaquin Kit Fox
- Mississippi Gopher Frog
- Atlantic Bluefin Tuna
- Woodland Caribou
Taking A Look At The List Of Illinois' Endangered Animals, I've Noticed That There Are A Few That I've Never Seen Before, Even Though I've Lived In Illinois All My Life
My grandfather grew up on a farm outside of Byron back in the early part of the last century, and he claimed that as a child he often heard wolves howling at night (keep in mind he was born in 1903), and it scared the hell out of him.
The good news is that kids living around the Byron area no longer hear wolves howling at night, the bad news is that it's because they've become very rare. I've never seen one in the wild in Illinois.
Gray wolves (Canis lupus) are distinctive wolf species that were once abundant in several regions of North America, including Illinois. Today, they are considered the largest wild canine in Illinois. Scientists believe that in North America alone, they used to number about two million. Due to run-ins with humans and habitat destruction, gray wolves have become endangered in Illinois.
Then, We Have Franklin's Ground Squirrel
Since the squirrels are listed as endangered, the Illinois government has declared that the mishandling, capture, or lethal removal of these squirrels by humans is strictly prohibited and illegal.
Next On The List Comes The Short-Eared Owl
The short-eared owl (Asio flammeus), also known as the marsh owl or grass owl, is one of the most unique birds in the world. Unfortunately, it is one of the endangered animal species in Illinois. The owl used to be the most abundant bird species in the state until its habitat loss became a huge problem.
To check out the Illinois Department of Natural Resources list of every endangered or threatened animal or plant species, click here.
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Gallery Credit: Katherine Gallagher