There are 145 Imperiled Animal Species listed in Florida. In our continuing series we’re spotlighting a few at a time. Today we’re looking at Wood Storks, American Crocodiles, and Sherman’s Fox Squirrels.
Wood Stork; Bird; Mycteria Americana: The iconic Wood Stork is listed as federally Threatened, upgraded from Endangered due to successful conservation efforts. However, FWC says, “The South Florida population has collapsed due to agricultural expansions and altered hydrocycles (Coulter et al. 1999, J. Rodgers pers comm. 2011).” I ask you, how will babies be delivered if Wood Storks become extinct? Learn more from these links: FWC, Audubon Florida, All About Birds, USFWS
Photo: By Mattstone911 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
American Crocodile; Reptile; Crocodylus Acutus: This Federally Threatened species is restricted to southern Florida coastal areas in the U.S., though it can be found throughout the Caribbean. While similar to American Alligators, they are lighter in color and have a narrower snout. Typically shy and reclusive, clashes with humans are exceedingly rare. Loss of habitat to human development keeps these cold-sensitive creatures restricted to protected lands for the most part. Learn much more through these links: FWC, MyFWC PDF, NatGeo, NPS
Sherman’s Fox Squirrel; Mammal; Sciurus Niger Shermani: The largest squirrel in the western hemisphere, sporting a bushy tail similar to a fox, the Sherman’s Fox Squirrel is a Florida Species of Special Concern due to habitat loss. Only 10%-20% of its native habitat remains, since it prefers longleaf pine forests and other uplands, most of which have been destroyed. Remaining populations are scattered and isolated…which can quickly lead to population declines. Learn much more about this native rodent through these links: MyFWC, Florida Nature, FNAI
Get to know our Imperiled Species — please check back often, as we’re spotlighting new species often. We still have a long way to go…