Friday, 13 May 2016

Facts About the Endangered Species Act of 1973

By Alina Bradford, Live Science Contributor | May 11, 2016 02:52am ET

The Endangered Species Act of 1973 was created to protect animals and plants that were in danger of becoming extinct. "Nothing is more priceless and more worthy of preservation than the rich array of animal life with which our country has been blessed," said President Richard Nixon while signing the act on December 28, 1973.

According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which administers the act along with the National Marine Fisheries Service, a species may be listed as either endangered or threatened. "Endangered" means a species is in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range. "Threatened" means a species is likely to become endangered within the foreseeable future. All species of plants and animals — including subspecies, varieties and, for vertebrates, distinct population segments — are eligible for listing, except pest insects.

As of May 10, 2016, the act listed 1,367 species of animals and 901 species of plants as endangered or threatened.

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