Delmarva Peninsula fox squirrel makes a comeback celebrated with the removal from the Endangered Species Preservation Act list as per a Friday federal announcement.
Once abundantly found in forests, the Delmarva Peninsula fox squirrel has seen a drop in population numbers ever since the beginning of the 20th century. Poaching in addition to a ramp up in forest clearing, timber harvesting as well as development projects have added to a destructive trend clearing the squirrel’s habitat.
Overall, it is estimated that 90 percent of the habitat of the cute gray squirrel was cleared in in Delmarva Peninsula. Now, the Delmarva Peninsula fox squirrel makes a comeback in the Delaware, Virginia and Maryland, all sharing the habitat of the animal.
In a Friday announcement, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials stated that the squirrel will finally be removed from the endangered species list. Now, its presence is prevalent in the Nanticoke Wildlife Area, Seaford and Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge.
The removal from the list is celebrated by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials as a major success of the Endangered Species Preservation Act. Many political arguments have been thrown in the debate over the efficiency of the Act. As Delmarva Peninsula fox squirrel makes a comeback, it makes the most powerful argument to support the continuous implementation of the Endangered Species Preservation Act.
Out of the woods, the Delmarva Peninsula fox squirrel brought a reason to celebrate. Michael Bean, who is the deputy assistant secretary for fish, wildlife and parks with the Interior Department joined Senator Tom Carper in stating:
“The Endangered Species Act brought this squirrel back from the brink, and I’m excited we can celebrate this victory here in one of its habitats today”.
However, if you happen to pass through either of the two hotspots for the silvery gray squirrel, don’t expect to find them jumping from tree branch to tree branch. While the population number increased sufficiently to bring the Delmarva Peninsula fox squirrel out of the endangered species list, the squirrels are rather shy animals, highly secretive.
Nonetheless, wildlife officials will continue monitoring the population for five more years, according to regulations under the Endangered Species Act. At the same time, plans to connect the squirrel to Sussex as well are currently set in motion.
Photo Credits: Flickr