MINNEAPOLIS— In accordance with an agreement with the Center for Biological Diversity that speeds up protection decisions for 757 species, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today proposed to protect the eastern massasauga as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. The reclusive, nonaggressive rattlesnake has been waiting for protection for more than 30 years.
Eastern massasauga rattlesnake photo by Mike Redmer, USFWS. This photo is available for media use.
“As wetlands have been drained and destroyed, the massasauga has disappeared with them,” said the Center’s Collette Adkins, an attorney and biologist who works to protect rare reptiles and amphibians. “Endangered Species Act protection for this beautiful snake will help safeguard its future, and will also help save the wetlands that people need for flood-control and water filtration.” www.biologicaldiversity.org
GR: The Arizona population of Massasauga (Sistrurus catenatus) is considered “critically imperiled” (S1) by the Arizona Game and Fish Department.