Celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act by adopting a rare plant species
Celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act by adopting a rare plant species. Through our Southern Oregon community (citizen) science project we will teach volunteers how to monitor populations of rare plant species. The goal is for volunteers to be able to visit known populations of their adopted species and report on the health of those populations. After completing the training, volunteers will work independently or with a team of family and friends as they check on their adopted plants over time.
The Endangered Species Act (ESA) was enacted on Dec. 28, 1973, to prevent the loss or harm of endangered and threatened species and to preserve the places they live. Now in its 50th year, the ESA stands as a testament to the power of partnerships and the conservation successes we can achieve through working together. Today, hundreds of species are stable or improving, thanks to conservation actions undertaken by federal agencies, state and local governments, conservation organizations and private citizens.
While we have made considerable progress in safeguarding our imperiled species and their habitats since the passage of the ESA, the challenges we face are ongoing. Loss of habitat and introduction of invasive species are the most serious threats to vulnerable species and their habitats. Additionally, climate change promises to expand the scope and complexity of these problems.
As we look to the next 50 years and beyond, a renewed commitment to species conservation and the ESA is vital. It is up to all of us to continue the success of the ESA so future generations may experience the natural heritage we all cherish. Sadly, the resources available for rare plant monitoring have never been enough to do the science necessary to adequately monitor known populations. Consequently, over the past 20 years many States and Provinces in North America have successfully involved their communities in rare plant species adoption programs.
The Siskiyou Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Oregon and The Understory Initiative are starting a local community (citizen) science Adopt a Rare Plant Program. Join us and help conserve our rare Southern Oregon flora.
For more information, go to understoryinitiative.org/rareplant.
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