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Idaho's conservation plan benefits hunters, anglers & taxpayers

Posted: 6:57 PM, Mar 23, 2017
Updated: 2017-03-24 13:39:43-04

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently approved Idaho's wildlife conservation plan.

Topping the action plan is the elusive wolverine, which according to state wildlife officials is in the greatest need of conservation efforts.

In the plan, there are 205 species of greatest concern. That's down from the 2005 list of which included a total of 229 species.

Through the process to update the list, threats are identified. While a loss of habitat is most common, disease and competition from invasive species are also factors that are considered.

Some of the species removed from the updated list include Peregrine Falcons and the Bald Eagle.

"If you're out there hunting or just recreating, what kind of an experience might that be without songbirds or butterflies... all the things you may not even notice that they're there," says Rex Sallabanks, the wildlife diversity program manager for Idaho Fish and Game. "But, you'd probably notice if they weren't there."

The goal is to prevent species whose numbers are on the decline from becoming threatened or endangered in the first place.

Sallabanks says when habitats are improved for non-game species, which the majority of the species on the list are in that category, game like elk and Mule Deer also benefit.

"It becomes a lot more expensive then to recover that animal once it's listed," he says. "So, we're saving money by being proactive."

You can find the full list and management plan by visiting  https://idfg.idaho.gov/swap .