We at Nature Bridges have spent our careers working to build beautiful structures without disturbing the natural beauty of our forests and wetlands. Those natural habitats are home to native animals and plants, and we consider the preservation of their homes to be one of our highest priorities.
Wildlife at Risk
With National Endangered Species Day coming up on May 21, we want to share some facts about the country’s most valuable resource:
- Wildlife that is considered endangered is in danger of extinction in the near future. Animals like the Kemp’s ridley sea turtle, Florida panther, and Staghorn coral are endangered.
- Threatened means that the plant or animal species is likely to be considered endangered soon. Animals like the West Indian manatee, roseate tern, and gray bat are threatened.
- As of May 2021, more than 700 animal species in the United States alone are considered threatened or endangered. In the world, that number is doubled.
- Almost 950 plant species are threatened or endangered.
- The top reason for species to become endangered or threatened is because of a change in their habitat. Other causes include natural events (volcano, etc.) pollution, pesticides, and the introduction of non-native invasive species.
What Can We Do?
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, along with other organizations, spends time and resources to preserve habitats and help these threatened and endangered species make a comeback. There are things we can do both on Endangered Species Day and throughout the year to help.
- When building any type of structure, consider how your building and the building process affects the natural habitat of animals.
- If you are a gardener, try not to use invasive plant species. Many beautiful native plant species are available to plant in our gardens, and they provide homes and food to our native animal species.
- Take steps to conserve water use in your home. Preservation of clean water through limited use of pesticides and herbicides can also help protect wildlife.
- Learn about endangered and threatened species in your area and any programs you may be able to participate in to help. For example, there may be programs where you can raise baby turtles until they are big enough to avoid area predators! There’s also a national Pollinator Party that lets anyone help scientists collect valuable information about area pollinators.
No matter what you do to help keep our wildlife safe, we invite you to participate in Endangered Species Day with us. Be on the lookout for any wildlife on May 21 (and every other day), and help us to keep our natural environment beautiful and strong!