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Criteria Used to Select Species and Habitats of Greatest Conservation Concern

The following sources were used when prioritizing species and habitats for inclusion to the list:


State Endangered and Threatened Species List
All species listed as endangered or threatened in NH (as of 06/21/2001) were included.


Heritage Rank
Species with a state rank of S1 (critically imperiled because extreme rarity or some factor of its biology makes it particularly vulnerable to extinction) or S2 (Imperiled because rarity or other factors demonstrably make it very vulnerable to extinction)


Animal Tracking List
Species were considered if they were tracked by the Natural Heritage Bureau and listed in the Animal Tracking List (June 2003). The rare species database was used to determine the number of known occurrences in New Hampshire.


Species of Regional Concern
Species identified by the Northeast Wildlife Diversity Technical Committee as a regional concern (Therres 1999).


New Hampshire Ecological Reserve System/ Living Legacy Program
Expert panels were formed as a way to assess population conditions and vulnerability of species in New Hampshire. A list of critical wildlife habitats was developed based on the habitat requirements of associated wildlife species of concern in the state. The list of associated wildlife species was developed by the Project's Scientific Advisory Group and modified by the Ecoreserve Wildlife Working Group (12/5/01).


Taxonomic experts
Species were added to the list based on comments made by taxonomic experts. Taxonomic experts also considered taxonomic priority lists. For example, ornithologists considered priority species under BCR14 (HHP and HP species), Partners in Flight (PIF), Shorebird Plans, etc.


Criteria used by experts to determine status in state included:

  1. Distribution and abundance in New Hampshire and Northeast. Peripheral species that are common elsewhere often were of less conservation concern than endemic or species in the core of range.
  2. What is the risk to the species or species habitat in New Hampshire
  3. Species vulnerability due to life-history characteristics (e.g., reproductive rate, home range size).
  4. Population trends in New Hampshire, regionally, or globally (i.e., is species stable, declining for 1 yr, many years)


NOTE: While some species and groups of species are supported by large datasets, other groups, especially invertebrates, fish, and some reptiles and amphibians are poorly understood. These groups will require directed attention in the future to address species of greatest concern.