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Listing Process for Endangered and Threatened Species

Listing Process

Florida's process for listing fish and wildlife is governed by Rule 68A-27.0012, F.A.C. Current and recent listing actions can be found under Listing Actions


Requests to Evaluate

  • Requests to evaluate a species status may be submitted to FWC between January 1 and June 30 of each year.
  • Requests are evaluated for completeness between July 1 and September 30 of each year.
  • Incomplete evaluation requests will be returned to the requestor with insufficiencies clearly noted in writing. 
  • Corrected evaluation requests can be re-submitted within 30 days outside of the January through June timeframe described above.

Requests to Evaluate must:

  • Be a written request submitted to the Commission through the Division of Habitat and Species Conservation;
  • Include the name, address, and signature of the person(s) submitting the request;
  • Include the scientific and common name of the species requested for evaluation;
  • Provide sufficient information on the biology and distribution of the species to warrant investigation of its status;
  • Include a biological score, calculated following the process described in Millsap, B.A., J.A. Gore, D.E. Runde, and S.I. Cerulean. 1990. Setting Priorities for the Conservation of Fish and Wildlife Species in Florida. Wildlife Monographs 111, and as subsequently modified; 
  • Include the data, references, and score assigned for each biological variable used to determine the biological score;
  • Include or reference the best scientific and commercial data available regarding the species.


Evaluation Process

Complete requests to evaluate are reviewed to determine if a change in listing status is warranted.

Listing Evaluation Requests
  • Commission staff review the information found in the request to evaluate and other available scientific and commercial data to determine a final biological score.
    • Species with final biological scores greater than or equal to 27 are evaluated further.
    • No further action is taken on species with final biological scores less than 19. The requestor will be notified if this is the case.
    • Staff evaluates the population trend, size, extent of occurrence, area of occupancy, and quantitative analysis available for the species to determine if further evaluation is needed for species with final biological scores ranging from 19 to 26.
  • For species that warrant continued evaluation, additional biological information is sought from the public, and a Biological Review Group is appointed by the Commission. Biological Review Groups consist of 3, 5, or 7 scientists familiar with the species. 
  • The Biological Review Group evaluates the species based on the criteria found in Rule 68A-27.001(3), F.A.C.
  • FWC staff prepares a Biological Status Report summarizing the review group’s findings, and make a recommendation for listing status within the report. 
  • The Biological Status Report is peer reviewed by no fewer than 3 independent scientists familiar with the species.
  • The Commission reviews the recommendation and determines if the species warrants listing.  If the species warrants listing, it is added to the list of candidate species and a deadline is established for developing a management plan.  
Requests to Remove a Species from Florida's Endangered and Threatened Species List
  • To determine if the removal of a species from Florida’s Endangered and Threatened Species list is warranted, species are evaluated against criteria found in Rule 68A-27.001(3), F.A.C.
    • The request to evaluate must include the information outlined above, with the exception of a biological score. 
  • A Biological Review Group is appointed to conduct the biological status review.
  • Commission staff prepares a Biological Status Report with a recommended listing action. The report is peer reviewed and presented to the Commission.


Final Listing

For any species to be added to or removed from the Florida Endangered and Threatened Species List, a management plan must be approved by the Commission.

Public comment periods are required for management plan development and review.  All management plans must meet the definition of a management plan as defined in Rule 68A-27.001, F.A.C.

Listing status changes are not effective until management plans are approved and the species is added to the Florida Endangered and Threatened Species List in 68A-27.003, F.A.C.


Emergency Evaluation Process

Emergency listing requests may be submitted at any time. 

The Executive Director reviews the request, and if listing is essential to prevent imminent extinction, a temporary Executive Order can be issued to list the species as state-designated Threatened.

The temporary order is approved or terminated at the next regularly scheduled Commission meeting. 

If approved, the evaluation described above and the development of a management plan must be completed within 365 days.