Celebrating the Endangered Species Act

Jet Eliot

Nene, Kauai, Hawaii Nene, Kauai, Hawaii

All the creatures photographed in this post were nearly exterminated to extinction if it had not been for this law.

Today marks the 42nd anniversary of the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the most important U.S. law for protecting wildlife and plants.

Enacted by the 93rd United States Congress and signed by President Nixon on December 28, 1973, the Act is administered by two federal agencies:  U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Bald Eagle, Calif. Bald Eagle, Calif.

ESA protects endangered vertebrates, invertebrates, non-flowering plants and flowering plants.

Originally developed to protect U.S. species, there are further worldwide extensions today.  Read more here.

Grizzly Bear, Denali NP, Alaska Grizzly Bear, Denali NP, Alaska

In the 1950s and 1960s the American alligator, victim of a highly profitable trade, was hunted nearly to extinction.

Then legislation was set into place, and today there are over a million alligators in the southern


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