Great Plains Studies, Center for


Date of this Version

October 1996


Published in Great Plains Research 6:2 (Fall 1996). Copyright © 1996 The Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska–Lincoln. Used by permission.


This is a handsome little volume offering information on the status and biology of all of the sixty species of Kansas plants, invertebrates, and vertebrates listed by the state or by federal statutes as threatened or endangered. The book begins with a one-page introduction stating the authors' goal of producing a single volume to provide ready access to information on all legally designated protected species in Kansas. In this the authors are successful. The introduction is followed by a brief history of how a species comes to be considered either threatened or endangered, as well as a complete list of all Kansas species so classified by both federal and state agencies. All other Kansas species considered in need of conservation (a designation that indicates less risk of extirpation than those considered threatened or endangered) are also listed. Some of these may be more imperiled in other states than they are in Kansas, and it is helpful to have them listed here. Knowledge of the status of a species across a wider geographic range than that delimited by the boundaries of a single state can be particularly useful for conservation biologists in neighboring states who might need to coordinate efforts across state lines to save a species. Only one species listed in this volume, the Lake Scott Riffle Beetle, is endemic to Kansas. Its loss there would mean its loss to the world. All other species occur in other states, or even other countries (e.g., the Bald Eagle), so the battle to conserve such species will be fought in many regions.