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Endangered Insects and Spiders - Other Endangered Insects

recovery species karner habitat

Santa Cruz Mountain Insects

Insects, like numerous other species, suffer from diminished habitat as a result of encroaching development,

FIGURE 9.1
Life history stages of the Karner blue butterfly

TABLE 9.2
Karner blue butterfly recovery plan overview

Recovery objectives: The objective of this recovery plan is to restore viable metapopulations of Karner blues across the species extant range so that it can be reclassified from endangered to threatened. The long-range goal is to remove it from the federal list of endangered and threatened wildlife and plants.
Recovery criteria: The reclassification criteria will be met when a minimum of 27 metapopulations [19 viable metapopulations (supporting 3,000 butterflies each), and 8 large viable metapopulations (supporting 6,000 butterflies each)] are established within at least 13 recovery units across the butterfly's range and are being managed consistent with the recovery objectives outlined in this plan. Delisting will be considered when a minimum of 29 metapopulations (13 viable and 16 large viable metapopulations) have been established within at least 13 recovery units and are being managed consistent with the plan.
Actions needed:
1. Protect and manage Karner blue and its habitat to perpetuate viable metapopulations.
2. Evaluate and implement translocation where appropriate.
3. Develop rangewide and regional management guidelines.
4. Develop and implement information and education program.
5. Collect important ecological data on Karner blue and associated habitats.
6. Review and track recovery progress (includes re-evaluation of recovery goals for Wisconsin).
Total estimated cost of recovery (in $1,000s):
Year Need 1 Need 2 Need 3 Need 4 Need 5 Need 6 * Total
2003 872.5 75 7 133 391 7 1,485.5
2004 964.5 55 26 63 423 27 1,558.5
2005 974 100 27 48 400 15 1,564
Total 2811 230 60 244 1,214 49 4,608
*Does not include land acquisition costs.
Date of recovery: Full recovery of the species is anticipated to require at least 20 years, until about 2023.
SOURCE: Adapted from Karner Blue Butterfly Recovery Team, "Executive Summary: Karner Blue Butterfly Recovery Plan," in Karner Blue Butterfly Recovery Plan (Lycaeides melissa samuelis), Department of the Interior, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Great Lakes-Big Rivers Regions (Region 3), Fort Snelling, MN, September 2003

industrialization, and changing land use patterns. In California's Santa Cruz Mountains, the tiny Zayante band-winged grasshopper, barely half an inch long, occupies areas containing abundant high-quality silica sand, known as Zayante or Santa Margarita sand. This sand is valuable for making glass and fiberglass products, and several businesses have entered the area in the hope of capitalizing on this. The Zayante band-winged grasshopper joined the ranks of listed endangered species in January 1997. In 2000, as a result of a lawsuit filed by the Center for Biological Diversity, the Fish and Wildlife Service proposed the establishment of critical habitat for the grasshopper.

The Ohlone tiger beetle was listed as endangered in October 2001. The species was discovered in 1987 and is found only in Santa Cruz County, California. The Ohlone tiger beetle is a small species, about half an inch long, with spotted metallic green wings and copper-green legs. Both adults and larvae hunt invertebrate prey. The Ohlone tiger beetle occupies a total of less than twenty acres of remnant native coastal prairie habitat on state land, private land, and property belonging to the University of California at Santa Cruz. The species declined due to habitat loss and habitat fragmentation resulting from urban development, as well as over-collection, pollution from pesticides, and the increasing encroachment of invasive plant species. The petition to list the Ohlone tiger beetle with the Fish and Wildlife Service was originally made by a private citizen in 1997.

In 1998 the Fish and Wildlife Service completed a recovery plan for the Zayante band-winged grasshopper, the Ohlone tiger beetle, as well as other insect and plant species found in the Santa Cruz Mountains. Table 9.5 summarizes a range of conditions that cause harm to a variety of Santa Cruz Mountain threatened and endangered species. Factors leading to endangerment include sand mining, urban development, conversion of land to agricultural uses, recreational use (such as hiking, horseback riding, off-road vehicle use, bicycling, and camping), competition with non-native species, fire suppression, pesticides, logging, and over-collection.

Hine's Emerald Dragonfly

The Hine's emerald dragonfly has been listed as an endangered species since 1995 and is found in federal and state preserves and National Forest lands in Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Missouri. In earlier times, its range extended through portions of Ohio, Alabama, and Indiana as well. The Hine's emerald dragonfly has a metallic-green body and emerald-green eyes. It is considered a biological indicator species because it is extremely sensitive to water pollution. The decline of this dragonfly species has resulted primarily from loss of suitable wetland habitat, such as wet prairies, marshes, sedge meadows, and FIGURE 9.2
Range-wide recovery units for the Karner blue butterfly
fens occurring over dolomite rock. (The lakeside daisy is another species damaged by the decline of these habitats—it is listed as threatened.)

Wetland habitats support dragonflies during their aquatic larval period, which lasts some three to four years. Adult dragonflies occupy open areas and forest edges near wetland habitats, where they feed on invertebrate species such as mosquitoes. Hine's emerald dragonflies also serve as prey for a variety of bird and fish species. The recovery plan for the dragonfly includes measures to protect current habitat as well as reintroduction of the species to portions of its former range. Private companies that own land supporting dragonfly populations have aided conservation efforts by monitoring populations and preserving important habitat areas.

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