Endangered Species Day (May 16) and Student Contest

Endangered Species Day - May 16, 2014

Endangered Species Youth Art Contest - deadline March 15, 2014

President Nixon signed the Endangered Species Act into law on December 28, 1973. Our legislators understood that, without protection from human actions, many of our nation's living resources would become extinct.  NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) share responsibility for implementing the Endangered Species Act (ESA).

Currently, there are about 2,100 species of animals and plants listed under the ESA. Of these species, approximately 1,480 are found in part or entirely in the U.S. and its waters; the remainder are foreign species. The ESA requires NMFS to designate critical habitat and to develop and implement recovery plans for threatened and endangered species.

The ESA has been successful in preventing species extinction—less than 1% of the species listed have gone extinct. Recently, the Eastern population of Steller sea lion was delisted. Read about that environmental success story here.

What are some ways that you can get involved? Celebrate Endangered Species Day on May 16, 2014, gain the public's attention by tweeting what the ESA has meant to you (#myESA), or celebrate endangered species by entering the Endangered Species Youth Art Contest (deadline of March 15, 2014). Of course, preserving wildlife habitats and cleaning up the outdoors where you live goes a long way too!