Proposal Would Help Restore Endangered Topeka Shiner in Missouri; Public Invited to Information Meetings

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing to reintroduce the endangered Topeka shiner.  The reintroduction would take place in restored streams at The Nature Conservancy's Dunn Ranch Prairie.

January 23, 2013

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is proposing to reintroduce the endangered Topeka shiner in northern Missouri, in partnership with the Missouri Department of Conservation and The Nature Conservancy, as part of an effort to restore populations in Missouri. The reintroductions would be carried out on lands managed by MDC and the Conservancy.

On January 23, 2013, the Service published a proposed rule to establish a “non-essential, experimental” population of Topeka shiners in Adair, Gentry, Harrison, Putnam, Sullivan and Worth counties in northern Missouri. This designation gives wildlife managers more flexibility in working with the reintroduced Topeka shiners and provides nearby private landowners with reassurance that the presence of a protected species will not affect their activities.

The Service is seeking public input on the proposal to establish a nonessential experimental population of Topeka shiners in Missouri. You may submit information by one of the following methods:

(1) Electronically: Federal eRulemaking Portal: Follow the instructions for submitting comments on Docket No FWS–R3–ES–2012–0087.

(2) By hard copy: Submit by U.S. mail or hand-delivery to: Public Comments Processing, Attn: FWS–R3–ES–2012–0087; Division of Policy and Directives Management; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service; 4401 N. Fairfax Drive, MS 2042-PDM; Arlington, VA 22203.

Deadline for comments is March 25, 2013.

Two public meetings will be held: on February 19, 2013, from 6 pm to 8:30 pm (Central Standard Time) at the Eagleville Community Center, 10028 10th St., Eagleville, Missouri 64442, and on February 21, 2013, from 6 pm to 8:30 pm (Central Standard Time), at the Green City Hall, 4 South Green St., Green City, Missouri 63545.

The Topeka shiner is a small minnow that lives in small to mid-size prairie streams in the central United States where it is usually found in pool and run areas. Suitable streams tend to have good water quality and cool to moderate temperatures.

Populations of the Topeka shiner have steadily declined, and the species now occupies only about 19 percent of its historical habitat, and only 15 percent of its former range in Missouri. The Topeka shiner was designated a federally endangered species in 1998. Threats to the species include habitat destruction, sedimentation, and changes in water quality. Under the Endangered Species Act, plants and animals listed as endangered are at risk of becoming extinct in the foreseeable future.

For more information on the Topeka shiner and the Service’s activities to recover endangered species, visit

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit


This release was issued by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on January 23, 2013.

The Nature Conservancy is a leading conservation organization working around the world to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the web at To learn about the Conservancy’s global initiatives, visit To keep up with current Conservancy news, follow @nature_press on Twitter.

Contact information

Paul McKenzie
573-234-2142 x 107

Georgia Parham
812-334-4261 x 1203

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