Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: Mississippi
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Mississippi Project

Integrating Conservation Planning Tools to Develop a Transparent Conservation Blueprint for Southeastern Aquatic Species

October 2019 - August 2022


Participating Agencies

  • USDOI Fish and Wildlife Service

Dozens of freshwater fishes will undergo formal Species Status Assessments under the Endangered Species Act over the next decade. However, most freshwater fishes are data-deficient, which creates uncertainty when evaluating species’ status. Therefore, we are developing an analytical framework and easy-to-use tools that integrate available data on species’ life history, distributions, and population trends for petitioned species. This work is a collaboration among Mississippi State University, USGS Mississippi Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, and biologists with the US Fish and Wildlife Service. This decision-support tool will help the USFWS structure available information on petitioned fishes, thereby leading to more transparent, quantitative, and reproducible status assessments.