Michigan offers a wide variety of ecosystems for a LARGE number of Mother Nature's creatures in North America. You pair the wooded areas of the Northern Peninsula, with the Largest Freshwater Lakes in the world, and rich farmland in the south, There are SO many species that can prosper in this area.

But through overhunting, fishing, and deforestation, habitats have begun to shrink, and with them, populations of native animals. As such, there are now dozens of endangered and threatened species across Michigan and the Great Lakes area that could soon go extinct if we don't recognize them.

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The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Services offered a report in 2015 that is in dire need of updating, but as of February that year, these were the federally Endangered, or Threatened species in the State.

Threatened vs. Endangered

It's important to distinguish between "Threatened" and "Endangered" in this conversation.

The worst of the worst is obviously "Extinct," and that's what conservation efforts are trying to avoid. Entities like the Michigan Department of Natural Resources work hand-in-hand with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Services, as well as the Environmental Conservation Online System. So, they identify species that are below an acceptable number in population, and work to protect them, and their habitats.

Animals who are on the brink of Extinction are deemed "Endangered." So this is the closest you can get, without completely disappearing. And then there's "Threatened," which is the next step up. They aren't in immediate danger, but there are some warning signs that should be taken into consideration


There are some distinctions to be made, too, between endangered and threatened on the State and Federal level. Michigan has an entirely different level of measurement. Something endangered on the State Level, might not be so endangered on the National level. It just means that a population that was once thriving, is now on the verge of being completely gone from the state, but not necessarily the rest of the country.

Michigan, though, has a ton of unique Fauna that could use our protection efforts.

Threatened/Endangered Species of Michigan

Michigan is home to a LARGE amount of unique Flora and Fauna, but a good portion of its species are on some kind of protected list, whether it be "Threatened," or flat out "Endangered."